Reviews for 'Birdman,' 'Nightcrawler' and 'Maps to the Stars' Lead Our Film Review Roundup

Reviews for 'Birdman,' 'Nightcrawler' and 'Maps to the Stars' Lead Our Film Review Roundup
Halloween is upon us which means loads of snack-sized candies to cram into your pockets as you head over to watch one of several new film releases this week. Every Friday, as always, we compile a list of reviews of this week's brand new movie releases in our Film Review Roundup. Read on for suggestions for what to watch while you're coming off that sugar high, then head to our Recently Reviewed section for more film reviews.

Up first we have Birdman, starring Michael Keaton. No stranger to a superhero movie, this time he plays washed up actor Riggan Thomson, who played the titular character in the fictional Birdman movies, and who struggles with the direction his life is taking. The film features an incredible lineup of actors including Edward Norton and Emma Stone, and was captured in one long single shot. Does this make the film too gimmicky? You'll have to read our review to find out.

Second on the list is Dan Gilroy's Nightcrawler. Jake Gyllenhaal plays the naive, opportunity-seeking Louis, who winds up becoming a "nightcrawler," a freelance camera person who captures seedy footage and sells it to a ratings-starved local news channel. The film reveals humanity's dark obsessions and, according to our reviewer, "the kinds of news culture we loudly mock but secretly consume." Want to know more? Check out our review.

Next up is Maps to the Stars, the latest from David Cronenberg. The film revolves around a fading actress in Hollywood (Julianne Moore), and features an array of Cronenberg's filmic trademarks. But does this film live up to Cronenberg's classics? Read our review to find out. Next is the high-concept thriller Before I Go To Sleep, which follows Christine (Nicole Kidman), who suffers from amnesia and wakes up day after day not able to remember what happened the day before. As the audience, we're only privy to the knowledge Christine has, but does this build tension or leave audiences in the fog? Read on to find out.

Young Ones takes place in a post-apocalyptic world where water is scarce and the most valuable of natural resources. Director Jake Paltrow "smartly assesses what it is about human nature that creates conflict rather than focusing on the symptoms they present," says our reviewer, but does it resonate? Our review will let you know.

Last but not least is Laggies, a coming-of-age movie starring Keira Knightley, who plays an aimless 20-something, and Chloë Grace Moretz, her teenaged friend. Both girls provide award-winning performances, but does that equal a film success? Read on to find out.

Not enough for you? Check out our Recently Reviewed section for additional film, music and video reviews every day.