Reel Picks: More about movies playing this week

Albert Nobbs (R)

The story of a woman in 19th century Ireland who has spent 30 years of her life passing as a man in order to make a living. Co-written by Glenn Close, who has been nominated for a best actress Oscar as the lead in this study of gender bending roles.

The Artist (PG-13)

A black-and-white, mostly silent film. It’s Hollywood, 1927. Silent movie star George Valentin wonders if the arrival of talking pictures will cause him to fade into oblivion, when he falls for a young dancer set for a big break. Nominated for 10 Oscars. Directed by Michel Hazanavicius, starring Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo. Dujardin won Best Actor at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.

Big Miracle (PG)

In a small Alaska town, a news reporter recruits his ex-girlfriend — a Greenpeace volunteer — on a campaign to save a family of gray whales. Drew Barrymore, John Krasinski, John Pingayak.

Chronicle (PG-13)

Three high school students make an incredible discovery, leading to their developing uncanny powers. With elements of a superhero origin story and a science-fiction fantasy, they learn to control their abilities and use them to their advantage.

The Descendants (R)

A land baron (George Clooney) tries to re-connect with his two daughters after his wife suffers a boating accident. Directed by Alexander Payne, and with Shailene Woodley and Amara Mille. Nominated for five Oscars, including best picture and best actor (Clooney).

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (PG-13)

Nine-year-old Oskar, an inventor, letter writer, and amateur detective, finds a key in a vase in a closet a couple of years after his father died in 9/11. He searches New York City for the lock that matches the mysterious key left behind by his father. Starring Thomas Horn, Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock.

Haywire (R)

A highly trained operative and super soldier (Gina Carano) seeks payback after she is betrayed and set up during a mission. Directed by Steven Soderbergh. Also starring Ewan McGregor, Michael Fassbender, Michael Douglas.

Red Tails (PG-13)

Based on the true story of the World War II crew of African-American pilots in the Tuskegee training program. Facing segregation, they are kept mostly on the ground during World War II, but are finally called into action. Terrence Howard, Cuba Gooding Jr., Gerald McRaney, David Oyelowo.