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November 24, 2011 at 3:06 PM

2 don’t-miss movies, plus 3 for the kids

It’s not often a movie earns a full four stars from one of our reviewers. Another rarity is a good PG flick, aimed at kids between toddlerhood and the teen years. This week, however, we’ve got reviews of two four-star pictures, and three PG movies rated three stars or higher.

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The four-star films:

Seattle Times movie critic Moira Macdonald says that George Clooney gives one of the finest performances of his career in “The Descendants.” The family drama is directed by Alexander Payne (“Sideways”), whom Macdonald recently had the pleasure of interviewing.

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Reviewer Tom Keogh was similarly knocked out by “Eames: The Architect and the Painter,” must-viewing for any fan of art or design. Charles and Ray Eames were key creators of modern style and Keogh calls the film “a dazzling, sensory adventure.”

For the kids:

“Arthur Christmas” is an “animated charmer” from Aardman Productions, the brilliant brains behind the Wallace & Gromit series. Reviewer John Hartl, who is no easy mark, gave it three-and-a-half stars.

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Meanwhile, Martin Scorsese brings you the imaginative “Hugo,” based on the ingenious graphic novel “The Invention of Hugo Cabret,” That got three stars from another veteran film writer, Soren Andersen.

Finally: Our own Moira Macdonald gave three warm-and-fuzzy stars to the new Muppets movie, calling it “the oddest, sweetest movie you’re likely to see this season.”

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(Photos: “The Descendants,” Fox Searchlight Pictures; “Eames: The Architect and the Painter,” Eames Office; “Hugo,” AP Photo/Paramount Pictures, Jaap Buitendijk; “The Muppets,” AP Photo/Disney Enterprises, Patrick Wymore.)

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