This week, our resident movie critic, Kevin McIndoe, shares his views on Their Finest, Begum Jaan, and Eat Local.
Filmmakers finally seem to have sussed that reflecting real life in the UK of today is not going to lure audiences.
That is, unless they go down the irritating road of all those egregious Richard Curtis/Hugh Grant outings.
So there has been a definite trend this year to hark back to eras when Britain really was great (or was it?).
With this, we get another window on the world of yesteryear but this time it’s about the lot of women on the home front during the Second World War.
Catrin Cole (Gemma Arterton) is a young copywriter who is offered a job with the Ministry of Information’s Film Division. Her remit is to bring a bit of female perspective to its propaganda shorts.
Catrin really doesn’t fancy the job but her artist husband’s gig isn’t exactly bringing home money.
When asked to work on a piece on the Battle of Dunkirk, Catrin ruffles the feathers of one of her male colleagues, Buckey (Sam Claflin), who doesn’t want to work with a woman.
However, their relationship blossoms and that’s when it becomes complicated, as Catrin is married.
It’s stoic, sharp, substantial and often silly. Very British, in fact. And with Bill Nighy in for good measure, what’s not to like in this comedy-drama?
Director Lone Scherfig helmed the brilliant An Education (2009), which propelled Carey Mulligan to stardom.
Her expert touch in recapturing the sights and sounds of a former era without descending into mawkish nostalgia is well on form.
She has made a movie that truly delivers on what a good film should do: rattle every emotion you have while ensuring you leave happy at the end of it.
There was a time when Bollywood was unwilling to film stories with episodes of its turbulent history as the backdrop.
That certainly isn’t the case here, as 11 women in India refuse to part ways with the brothel that employs them as the country tears itself apart over the partition with Pakistan.
In this, Begum Jaan (Vidya Balan) is more concerned about her lot and the plight of other women as the ravages of political turmoil reverberate around her. She intends to be in control of her destiny, and is determined that any change is not going to wreck her life or those she cares about. In Hindi, with English and Arabic subtitles.
Surely the vampire movie fad must be due for a stake through the heart? Well, obviously not, as this latest incarnation sees the quiet, unassuming Sebastian Crockett (Billy Cook) onto something with his hot, older girlfriend Vanessa (Eve Myles). Yeh, he’s onto something all right; especially when he meets some of her uninhibited friends.
Pretty soon, a motley crue of vampire killers, including Annette Crosbie (pictured) turn up to break up the party, and find they have their work cut out.
These young women only get a good girls’ night out every 50 years so they’re not prepared to knock their knees-up on the head just like that. Silly but good fun.
The Long View
Spark is a teenage monkey living on an abandoned planet with his high-spirited friends Chunk, a battle-hardened fox; and Vix, a tech-savvy pig.
However their carefree days are about to come to an end when they learn of the dastardly General Zhong’s plans to wipe out the entire universe. Zhong has captured the deadly space monster Kraken, a beast that has the power to create black holes. If Zhong makes use of it, he will blow the universe to smithereens, and it’s left to Spark and Co to stop him.
Action-packed, full of fun; the kids will love it. With voices provided by Susan Sarandon, Jessica Biel and Patrick Stewart.
Release Date: May 4