Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
When a mysterious force threatens a vast space station where many intergalactic species exist in harmony, a team of bantering special agents (Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevigne) are sent to investigate—but nothing about the case is quite what it seems. Writer-director Luc Besson (adapting comic books by Pierre Christin and Jean-Claude Mézières) goes crazy with an intoxicating array of creatures and wondrous effects. (Think The Fifth Element cubed.) The story is slight but sufficient, and the fun keeps coming. Amid all the magic some performances stand out: DeHaan has the boyish charm of the young Tom Cruise, and Delevigne adds spicy star-making sauce. Clive Owen as a sinister soldier and Ethan Hawke as a pimp have their moments too, and there’s a poignant cameo by Rihanna as a shape-shifting “entertainer.” J.L.