Movie Watch: Amarillo film options for June 28 to July 5, with 'Sicario,' 'First Purge,' more

Last Updated by Chip Chandler on
Benicio Del Toro and Josh Brolin star in "Sicario: Day of the Soldado"
Courtesy Sony Pictures

By Chip Chandler — Producer

In Amarillo theaters: A vicious battle on the border, a basketball comedy and, in time for the July 4 holiday, a bloody origin story.


New in theaters

Sicario: Day of the Soldado

"Sicario: Day of the Soldado" trailer

Rule-scoffing fed Matt Graver (Josh Brolin) enlists enigmatic hitman Alejandro (Benicio Del Toro) to help escalate the drug war in retaliation for drug cartels' attempts to sneak terrorists across the border. It's an uncomfortably timely sequel to 2015's Oscar-nominated original Sicario and the second in a proposed trilogy. This one's still written by Taylor Sheridan (Hell or High Water), but it's directed by Italian director Stefano Sollima (Gomorrah). Reviews are pretty mixed, but some take exception to the ultra-violence and the timing. "That it’s these two jet-black cynics (Brolin and Del Toro) we’re following, and that Emily Blunt’s outsider FBI agent (from the original) is nowhere to be found, tells you a little bit about what this movie’s objective is: to fully wallow in its morass, unencumbered by character transformation. Or, as one character asks another incredulously as the scheme inevitably goes south, 'You believe change is the goal?,'” writes Vulture's Emily Yoshida. (R for strong violence, bloody images, and language; click here for showtimes at United Artists Amarillo Star 14, 8275 W. Amarillo Blvd., and Cinemark Hollywood 16, 9100 Canyon Drive)


Uncle Drew

"Uncle Drew" trailer

Inspired by a series of Pepsi web videos starring NBA player Kyrie Irving as an old man who regularly shows up young punks on playground courts, this feature-length comedy might have been better off remaining shorts. It does feature Get Out co-star Lil Rey Howery as Drew's nephew, plus basketball greats Shaquille O'Neal, Chris Webber, Reggie Miller, Nate Robinson, and Lisa Leslie in old-age makeup as his former teammates, though. "For a few shining minutes, Uncle Drew is the movie it surely intended to be: funny and clever, quick and snappy, and most of all, fun — all infused with love for the great sport of basketball. Unfortunately, those minutes come during the closing credits, a sequence entertaining enough to be its own viral video," writes the Associated Press' Jocelyn Noveck. (PG-13 for suggestive material, language and brief nudity; click here for showtimes at Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16)


Opening Tuesday

The First Purge

"The First Purge" trailer

The bloody popular franchise goes back to the beginning in this new installment. The New Founding Fathers of America decide to test a theory that one night of venting aggression will help push the crime rate to record lows, targeting one isolated community. Clearly, as fans of the franchise know, it spreads like wildfire beyond that. No reviews yet, but you've probably got a good idea what you're in for. (R for strong disturbing violence throughout, pervasive language, some sexuality and drug use; click here for showtimes at Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16)


Special engagements


"Bandstand" trailer

Broadway show Bandstand, a swing musical about a group of soldiers adapting to life on the homefront following World War II, will screen at 7 p.m. Thursday at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.


Kids' movie specials

All three Amarillo movie theaters are offering summer-long specials on family films. Click here for the full schedule.

This week's offerings:



"Fireworks" trailer

Filmmaker Geni Kawamura follows up his Your Name with Fireworks, a sci-fi tale of star-crossed teenagers who use an alien device to reset time and stay together — at the risk of losing touch with reality. It'll screen at 7 p.m. Tuesday (subtitled), 7 p.m. July 5 (subtitled) and 12:55 p.m. July 7 (English-dubbed) at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.


Movies at the Lake

"I Can Only Imagine" trailer

The third-annual Fireworks at the Lake celebration at Lake Meredith National Recreation Area will be followed by a screening of I Can Only Imagine. Foods and snacks will be available from several vendors. Fireworks start at 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, with the film following. Admission is free. Call 806-857-3151.



July 5: Advance tickets are now on sale for Marvel superhero sequel Ant-Man and the Wasp at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

July 12: In 350 Days — Legends, Champions, Survivors, former pro wrestling champions Bret Hart and Billy Graham talk with fellow vets about the toll taken by the sport. It'll screen at 7 p.m. July 12 at Amarillo Star 14.

July 12: Advance tickets are on sale now for animated sequel Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation and action-adventure Skyscraper at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

July 15 and 18: The TCM Big Screen Classics series continues with a 30th anniversary presentation of the Tom Hanks comedy Big, screening at 2 and 7 p.m. July 15 and 18 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

July 19: Advance tickets are on sale for musical sequel Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

July 20: Thriller sequel The Equalizer 2 is scheduled to open, but advance tickets are not yet on sale.

July 22 to 25: The Studio Ghibli Fest 2018 continues with fantasy adventure Princess Mononoke at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16. An English-dubbed version will screen at 12:55 p.m. July 22 and 7 p.m. June 25, with a subtitled version screening at 7 p.m. July 23.

July 26: An encore screening of Newsies: The Broadway Musical will return for special summer showings at 7 p.m. July 26 and 12:55 p.m. July 28 at Amarillo Star 14.

July 27: Action sequel Mission: Impossible — Fallout and animated feature Teen Titans Go! to the Movies are scheduled to open, but advance tickets are not yet on sale.

July 28 and 30: An encore screening of Sailor Moon R — The Movie will precede the premiere of Sailor Moon S — The Movie in a special event. They'll screen at 12:55 p.m. July 28 (English-dubbed) and 7 p.m. July 30 (subtitled) at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16. A third movie in the cycle, Sailor Moon Supers — The Movie, will screen Aug. 4 and 6.



Listings at a glance

Click on titles for my reviews and on theaters for showtimes. NOTE: Some additional movies may leave to make room for the mid-week opening of The First Purge.

Avengers: Infinity War (H-16); Breaking In (WM-6); Deadpool 2 (AS-14, H-16); The First Purge (beginning Tuesday at AS-14, H-16); Hereditary (AS-14, H-16); The Incredibles 2 (AS-14, H-16, plus Sandell Drive-In, 12 S. Center Drive in Clarendon, and Tascosa Drive-In, 1999 Dumas Drive); Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (AS-14, H-16); Ocean's 8 (AS-14, H-16 and Tascosa); Overboard (WM-6); A Quiet Place (WM-6); Rampage (WM-6); Sherlock Gnomes (WM-6); Sicario: Day of the Soldado (AS-14, H-16); Show Dogs (WM-6); Solo: A Star Wars Story (H-16Sandell and Tascosa); SuperFly (AS-14); Tag (AS-14, H-16); and  Uncle Drew  (AS-14, H-16).



Chip Chandler is a producer for Panhandle PBS and a member of GALECA. He can be contacted at, at @chipchandler1 on Twitter and on Facebook.




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