Bright Star *** 1/2 (3 1/2 ) It's a delicate but also robust and funny portrait of the romance between John Keats and Fanny Brawne. This film about a poet who never lived beyond his youth and the plucky seamstress who became his final muse captures the essential allure of poetry: its ability to express the ineffable. Thanks to the performances of Ben Whishaw and Abbie Cornish, and the moviemaking of Jane Campion, there's nothing affected about "Bright Star": It conveys the manly - and womanly - qualities of erotic and aesthetic reverie.
Opening next Friday
'Couple's Retreat': (Universal Pictures) Four couples settle into a tropical-island resort for a vacation, only to discover that the resort's therapy sessions are mandatory. With Vince Vaughn and Kristen Bell.
'Paris' : (IFC Films) After he is diagnosed with a potentially fatal heart condition, a French dancer calls upon his sister for help. With Juliette Binoche and Romain Duris
'Unmistaken Child': (Oscilloscope Pictures) A real-time documentation of the search for a reincarnated Tibetan master, told through the eyes of his lifelong disciple, Tenzin Zopa. Directed by Nati Baratz.
Opening Oct. 16
'The Stepfather' : (Screen Gems) A son suspects his mother's new love has a dark side. With Penn Badgley.
Release dates are subject to change.