“Independence Day: Resurgence”
Opens at 8 p.m. Thursday
Anyone remember a little Will Smith alien-invasion pic called “Independence Day”? On its 20th anniversary comes a sequel to the 1996 megabuster, with Liam Hemsworth filling in for Mr. Smith and Jeff Goldblum exclaiming, “Oh, my God,” as malevolent ETs return to conquer Earth. Warning: This movie wasn’t screened in advance for critics. Enter at your own peril. Rated PG-13. Time: 2:00.
“Free State of Jones”
Opens at 7 p.m. Thursday
Written and directed by Gary Ross (“The Hunger Games”), this fact-based Civil War drama tells the story of Newton Knight (Matthew McConaughey), a disillusioned Confederate Army deserter who, with the help of escaped slaves and like-minded Southern farmers, rises up against the Confederacy. Rated R. Time: 2:19.
In this “Jaws” for a new generation, Blake Lively plays a surfer who gets stranded off a remote beach on a small rock outcropping after being attacked by a 20-foot great white shark (CGI, not animatronic). As the tide rises, she must use her ingenuity to avoid becoming chum. Rated PG-13. Time: 1:27.
“The Neon Demon”
Elle Fanning is an aspiring model who moves to L.A. and falls in with a bad crowd in director Nicolas Winding Refn’s stylish thriller. Rated R. Time: 1:57.
A rookie major leaguer with control problems is sent to the minors to work with a sports psychologist, who discovers repressed conflicts between the pitcher and his domineering father. With Johnny Simmons, Paul Giamatti and Ethan Hawke. Not rated. Time: 1:30.