Movie Maniac

Screen Scene: ‘American Ultra,’ Sundance hit ‘End of the Tour’ open in Wichita

The Tallgrass Film Association’s Cinema Alfresco returns with “3 Idiots” at Wichita State University.
The Tallgrass Film Association’s Cinema Alfresco returns with “3 Idiots” at Wichita State University. Courtesy photo

Best bets opening Friday

▪ “American Ultra” – This action-comedy stars Jesse Eisenberg as a small-town stoner whose life with his live-in girlfriend (Kristen Stewart) is suddenly turned upside-down when he discovers he has been trained as a lethal CIA agent, he just doesn’t remember it. See what too much weed can do, kids?

▪ “The End of the Tour” – This Sundance film festival hit has been in a slow-rollout release since early August and now opens in Wichita. It chronicles the five-day interview between Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky (Jesse Eisenberg again – he’s taking over Wichita!) and acclaimed novelist David Foster Wallace (Jason Segel) that took place after the 1996 publication of Wallace’s groundbreaking novel “Infinite Jest.”

Also opening Friday

▪ “Hitman: Agent 47” – Movies based on video games haven’t transferred to the big screen well (I’m talkin’ to you, “Mortal Kombat”) – and the first “Hitman” in 2007 that starred Timothy Olyphant is a good example. This new film is technically a reboot, starring Rupert Friend as a lethal assassin (is there any other kind?) who teams up with a woman to help her find her father and uncover the mysteries of her ancestry.

▪ “Sinister II” – Note to parents: If you move your family into a creepy old country house and one of your kids gets possessed and tries to kill you because he can’t get another chocolate chip cookie, maybe you should move, perhaps?

Special screenings

▪ Return of the Cults: “Pink Floyd the Wall” – The trippy 1982 film companion to the classic Pink Floyd album follows a troubled rock star’s descent into madness. Showing at 7, 9:15 and 11:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Palace Theatre, 535 S. Ridge Circle. Tickets are $3.50.

▪ Cinema Alfresco Spotlight on East Indian Cinema: “3 Idiots” – The Tallgrass Film Association and Wichita State University’s Ulrich Museum of Art team up to present this coming-of-age comedy at 8:30 p.m. Friday at WSU’s Duerksen Amphitheater. The film follows college friends bucking the flailing higher-education system. Admission is free. Blankets, lawn chairs and picnic dinners are welcome. The film is rated PG-13.