Film & Cinema

The Secret Life of Pets.

Creatures great and small wreak havoc on the streets of New York City in Chris Renaud and Yarrow Cheney’s colourful computer-animated romp.

Melissa McCarthy in 'The Boss'

Melissa McCarthy, famed for her hilarious scenes in ‘Bridesmaids’ and underrated releases ‘Tammy’ and ‘The Heat’, is due to appear on the big screen later this year leading an all-female cast for ‘Ghostbusters’.

Penelope Cruz as Magda in Ma Ma

The cancer film is a film that I can’t see a need for.

Michael Shannon (left) stars as Elvis Presley and Kevin Spacey (right) stars as President Richard Nixon in Liza Johnson's ELVIS & NIXON. Picture: Steve Dietl

The meeting between the King and The Chief has a mythic air to it – perhaps because it happened in 1970 before Tricky Dicky got into taping every event that happened in the White House,

The Secret Life of Pets

Illumination Entertainment is the most successful animation studio you’ve never heard of.

New York


Friday, June 17, 2016
Film Still  from Tale of Tales. Pictured: Salma Hayek. See PA Feature FILM Hayek. Picture: PA Photo/Curzon Artificial Eye.

Inspired by the works of Basile, Matteo Garrone’s latest film is filled with fantastic tales of deceit and revenge.

A scene from Cemetery of Splendour

Thai director Weerasethakul is of the paint drying school of art house cinema.

Race is out in cinemas now

This week’s recommended film of the week is Race (PG).

A scene from Scott of the Antarctic

The passing of time has not been kind to Captain Robert Falcon Scott and his doomed Polar expedition, which is increasingly seen less as a noble, brave failure and more as a foolhardy, badly organised waste of human life.

A scene from Bang Gang

Bang Gang is a The Kids Are All Wrong piece that passes pleasantly but aimlessly by, making points that have all been made before, and is thus rather reassuring.

Tale of Tales

Director Matteo Garrone came to international attention with Gomorrah, a forensic dissection of the mafia that picked apart its grip on Italy.


When Marnie Was There (U)

Thursday, June 9, 2016
When Marnie Was There. Photo: Studio Ghibli

Nominated as Best Animated Feature at this year’s Oscars, writer-director Hiromasa Yonebayashi’s tender coming-of-age story is sensitively adapted from Joan G Robinson’s book of the same name, which was originally set on the Norfolk Coast.

A still from When Marnie Was There

There are quite a few weepy films coming out this week but none will have the poignancy of this Japanese animation.

Michael Moore in Where To Invade Next

Weeks away from the big EU referendum, our noble choice between Project Fear and Project Nutter, here’s an unexpected intervention from Michael Moore, with a new film about how brilliant life in Europe is (and Iceland and Tunisia).

European Union


Thursday, June 2, 2016
The Nice Guys

Good things come to those who wait.

The cast of Dad's Army

Like all right thinking people, you hated the idea of a film version of the nation’s most beloved sitcom.

A scene from Warcraft

Films of games have consistently disappointed; and really, why wouldn’t they?

Ken Loach in Versus: The Life and Films of Ken Loach

Last week there was an article in The Guardian about how Labour candidates in the last elections were like “middle class Ryanair passengers,” trying to suppress their metropolitan squeamishness while canvassing in traditional Labour areas.

Anthony Hopkins. Picture: Steve Dietl

Misconduct is a truly terrible film; but it is at least a compelling terrible film.

Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe in THE NICE GUYS. Picture: Daniel McFadden

Shane Black has had his ups and downs in Hollywood – going from a million dollar screenwriter (Lethal Weapon) in the ‘80s to being largely ignored in the ‘90s.

Ken Loach.  Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Dartmouth Park director Ken Loach celebrates his 80th birthday this June. After his latest feature, I, Daniel Blake won the Palme D’Or and a documentary out about his life and work, Meredith Taylor reports on this gritty slice of social realism.

Nick Cage in The Trust

When two small time cops try to rob a drug dealing network’s hidden vault, thing don’t go as they expect – which is to be expected.

George Clooney stars as Lee Gates in MONEY MONSTER. Picture: Atsushi Nishijima/Sony Pictures Entertainment

In Money Monster, a selection of Hollywood ‘Liberal Icons’ gather together to wag their fingers at today’s naughty businessmen, and the callous society that has grown up around it.

Tom Hanks

Film of the week: A Hologram for the King (12A)

Damian Lewis stars in Silent Storm

There isn’t a storm, and it isn’t silent.

Tom Hanks stars in A Hologram for The King. Picture: Frederic Batier

The thing about the On-Screen Niceness of Tom Hanks, is that he really is phenomenally nice; and nice in a good way.

Chuck (Josh Gad) and Red (Jason Sudeikis) in Angry Birds. Picture: Rovio Animation

As a film reviewer I live in a world of nark.

A scene from Evolution

If you were the child that felt sick or fainted at school during the lesson when they wheeled out the video recording of the Miracle of Childbirth, this may not be the film for you.

Patrick Stewart stars in Green Room

A desperate, down on their luck punk band take a gig at a backwoods, skinhead, white supremacists’ club, run by Darcy (Stewart).

Ewan McGregor stars in Our Kind Of Traitor. Picture: Jaap Buitendijk

Yes, of course it’s a Le Carré. Even if you didn’t know the title already, you’d know. That title is quintessential Le Carré.

Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant in Florence Foster Jenkins. Picture: Nick Wall

This is a Meryl Streep film about a bad singer: like Mamma Mia but with Streep in the Pierce Brosnan role.

New York
Blake Jenner stars in Everybody Wants Some!! Picture: Van Redin

A year ago Richard Linklater was almost an Oscar winning director; after sweeping through awards season, Boyhood got pipped at the post by Birdman.

A scene from God's Not Dead 2

This courtroom drama is a testament to humanity’s unlimited desire to feel put upon and hard done by.

King George III

Just as Huntingdon Drama Club seemed destined to perform this highlight of the Alan Bennett canon, so I seemed destined to review it.


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