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Movie Watch: Amarillo film options for May 24 to 31, with 'Solo,' Illumination Week, more
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Han (Alden Ehrenreich) and Chewbacca (Joonas Suotamo) in "Solo"
Courtesy LucasFilms

By Chip Chandler — Producer

In Amarillo theaters this week: A half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf herder flies Solo. Plus, special treats for kids fill the screens.


New in theaters

Solo: A Star Wars Story

There are a couple of ways that you can look at the mixed critical reaction to this origin story of the Star Wars galaxy's most beloved smuggler: Reviewers either went in expecting the worst because of the film's its troubled history (the canning of original directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the extensive remakes led by new director Ron Howard), or they're pleasantly surprised that it wasn't a total disaster. Or maybe it's a little of both, plus weariness at the checklist nature of a prequel? "Solo is less a movie than it’s that page in Highlights Magazine that makes you feel good for finding the chair and the bicycle in the hidden picture. As an intergalactic adventure, it’s mostly adequate, with some very successful elements, but if you stripped the Star Wars names and places and put it into the world as a free-standing sci-fi-action movie, it’s doubtful that it would spawn much excitement, let alone sequels," writes The Wrap's Alonso Duralde. (PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi action/violence; click here for showtimes at United Artists Amarillo Star 14, 8275 W. Amarillo Blvd., and Cinemark Hollywood 16, 9100 Canyon Drive)


Special engagements

Illumination Week

A quartet of Illumination Studios films — Dr. Seuss' The LoraxThe Secret Life of PetsSing and Despicable Me — will screen several times between Friday and Tuesday at Hollywood 16. Clickhere for the full schedule.


Memorial Day Western Weekend

Enjoy free screenings of some Clint Eastwood classics in the Memorial Day Western Weekend at Sandell Drive-In, 12 S. Center Drive in Clarendon. 

The Outlaw Josey Wales will screen at dusk Friday, with concessions opening at 6 p.m. and Pale Rider will screen at dusk Sunday, with gates opening at 4 p.m. and a washer pitching contest beginning at 5 p.m. Registration for it begins at 4:30 p.m.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for children and free for ages 2 and younger. Call 806-874-0685.


A Chance in the World

Based on the memoir, this inspirational drama tells the story of adoption advocate Steve Pemberton and his struggles surviving in the foster system. A live-streamed panel discussion will follow. It'll screen at 7 p.m. Wednesday at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.


Cinemark Summer Movie Clubhouse

The Cinemark Hollywood 16, 9100 Canyon Drive, will screen 10 PG-rated family films over the summer for $1 per movie in its Cinemark Summer Movie Clubhouse. Each film will screen at 10:30 a.m. Wednesdays from May 30 to Aug. 1. It'll kick off at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday with The Emoji Movie. Click here for the full schedule.


Andy Irons: Kissed by God

This faith-based documentary details the story of champion surfer Irons and his struggles with bipolar disorder and opioid addiction. A streamed Q&A will follow. It'll screen at 7 p.m. May 31 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.



June 1: Advance tickets are on sale now for brutal Johnny Knoxville comedy Action Point at Hollywood 16 and for survival drama Adrift at Amarillo Star 14. Plus, Vol. 2 of Tommy Wiseau and Greg Sestero's Best F(r)iends will screen at 8 p.m. June 1 and June 4 at Amarillo Star 14.

June 3 and 6: The TCM Big Screen Classics series continues with The Producers, screening at 2 and 7 p.m. June 3 and 6 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

June 7: Advance tickets are now on sale for horror film Hereditary at the Hollywood 16; Amarillo Star 14 should follow.

June 8: Action thriller Hotel Artemis and heist flick Ocean's 8 are scheduled to open nationally, but advance tickets are not yet on sale.

June 10 and 11: Enjoy a double feature of the original 1995 Jumanji and the 2017 hit Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle in special screenings at 2 p.m. June 10 and 6:30 p.m. June 11 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

June 11: The Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker) learns the origins of his deadliest foes in Doctor Who: Genesis of the Daleks, a cinema-length director's cut of one of the most popular Doctor Who serials ever made. It'll screen at 7 p.m. June 11 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

June 12: A National Theatre Live screening of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, a theatrical adaptation of the acclaimed book (which itself is part of PBS's The Great American Read) will screen at 7 p.m. June 12 at Amarillo Star 14.

June 13: Watch the original The Incredibles and sequel The Incredibles 2 in a special double-feature event at 6 p.m. June 13 at Amarillo Star 14. Plus, the inspirational drama One Last Thing, presented by Chicken Soup for the Soul, finds a dentist (Wendell Pierce) being encouraged by his assistant (Joanne Froggatt, Downton Abbey) to reconnect with his estranged daughter (Jurnee Smollett-Bell). It'll screen at 7 p.m. June 13 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

June 14: Advance tickets are on sale now for Pixar superhero sequel The Incredibles 2 at Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

June 14 and 19: The original Mystery Science Theater 3000 guys are back to poke fun at a notoriously cheeseball '80s sci-fi film in RiffTrax Live: Space Mutiny. It'll stream live at 7 p.m. June 14 and encore at 7:30 p.m. June 19 at Amarillo Star 14.

June 15: Action thriller Superfly and action comedy Tag also are scheduled to open nationally, but advance tickets are not yet on sale.

June 17 to 20: The Studio Ghibli Fest 2018 continues with ecological fable Pom Poko at both the Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16. An English-dubbed version will screen at 12:55 p.m. June 17 and 7 p.m. June 20, with a subtitled version screening at 7 p.m. June 18.

June 21: Top drum corps Blue Stars, Bluecoats, Boston Crusaders, Carolina Crown, The Cavaliers and Phantom Regiment will show off their new shows at 2018 DCI Tour Premiere, screening live at 7:30 p.m. June 21 at Hollywood 16.

June 22: Action-adventure sequel Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is scheduled to open nationally, but advance tickets are not yet on sale.

June 24 and 27: The TCM Big Screen Classics series continues with beloved musical West Side Story, screening at 2 and 7 p.m. June 24 and 27 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

June 25 and 28: 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. June 25 and 28 at both Amarillo Star 14 and Hollywood 16.

June 29: Comedies The Hustle and Uncle Drew and action thriller Sicario: Day of the Soldado are scheduled to open nationally, but advance tickets are not yet on sale.


Listings at a glance

Click on titles for my reviews and on theaters for showtimes.

Avengers: Infinity War (AS-14, H-16); Black Panther (Premiere Cinemas Westgate Mall 6, 7701 W. Interstate 40); Blockers (WM-6); Book Club (AS-14, H-16); Breaking In (AS-14, H-16); Deadpool 2 (AS-14, H-16 and Tascosa Drive-In, 1999 Dumas Drive); I Can Only Imagine (WM-6); I Feel Pretty (WM-6); Life of the Party (AS-14, H-16); The Miracle Season (WM-6); Overboard (AS-14, H-16 and Tascosa); Peter Rabbit (WM-6); A Quiet Place (AS-14); Show Dogs (AS-14, H-16); Solo: A Star Wars Story (AS-14, H-16); and Truth or Dare (WM-6). 


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.