Hello one and all and welcome to this week’s trawl through what’s out there at Brum’s cinemas over the next week.
As always we have a mixed bag of treats out so without further ado, let’s have a dig shall we….
It’s the return of Katniss Everdeen to the big screen as she returns to District 13 to lead the rebellion! Yep, The Hunger Games franchise dictates effectively that Mockingjay has been split into two parts. Effectively part 1 is the stuff in District 13 and Part 2 will be the big fight.
I’m a big fan of these films. I fight the notion that these films are aimed purely at the teenage audience. Sure, the books have a hero that teenage girls have identified with, but far more than say something like the Twilight Saga, The Hunger Games has a more universal appeal because it is well written, well acted and has a dark underbelly and premise.
Sure, everything is amplified up to 10 and it deals with topic matters in such a way which would appeal to the mentality of a teen audience but with that comes the fact that the films are actually satires of media and youth in our world – an obsession with image, corruption and what horrors exist at the top of society etc.
So here we have more dialogue, a little less action and even if things are stretched out to two movies, I will still go to watch in anticipation of a thrill.
The Homesman (15)
In only Tommy Lee Jones‘s second film as director, he also writes, produces and stars in this Western which shows total immersion and belief in this bleak world. The story is adaptation of Glendon Swarthout’s 1988 novel and offers a unique approach by shifting the focus to the women and children who were at the heart of the horrors, and Jones has captured this, often in devastating fashion.
Mary Bee Cuddy (Hilary Swank) is tasked with rescuing three women driving mad by the harsh frontier life. She employs a driver called George Briggs (Tommy Lee Jones), to join her on the adventure. It’s a film which contrasts the bleakness and threat with the stark natural beauty and dark humour.
This film has been called bleak in some circles but from the trailers, footage and interviews I have read, the film counteracts the darkness with acts of dark humour and levity.
Whatever its faults, it’s a film of ambition and with much to say and definitely worth a look this week.
Get On Up (12A)
As the title might well hint, this is a biopic of James Brown with Chadwick Boseman in the title role following his rise from extreme poverty to becoming one of the most iconic musicians of the 20th century. The film follows in the blueprint of other biopics of influential musicians, such as Jamie Foxx as Ray Charles interweaving musical and dramatic connections across time and space.
Engaging, award worthy and full of energy, this is a film that is made on the charismatic performances and the word from the critics is very favourable towards Boseman’s portrayal of Brown.
My Old Lady (12A)
This drama-comedy follows a New Yorker who inherits an apartment in Paris from his estranged father and finds an old lady living there with her protective daughter.
This is a film where canny casting can save a film’s pitfalls in other areas and in Kevin Kline, Kristin Scott Thomas and Maggie Smith (doing the hilarious grumpy old woman thing) there’s hope.
Many critics have preferred the film’s turns to darker humour over the lighter fluffier moments but there’s no doubt that folks should go for the strength of the cast.
Gone Too Far! (12A)
Showing at the mac from Friday through Thursday, this film is set in London and follows two estranged teenage brothers over the course of a single day as they meet for the first time and struggle to accept each other for who they are.
The film is based the Olivier Award-winning stage play by Bola Agbaje and is the feature debut of director Destiny Ekaragha.
Jimi: All Is By My Side (15)
Also at the mac from Friday through Monday, this is a drama based on Jimi Hendrix’s life as he left New York City for London, where his career took off. In stark contrast to Get On Up this week, this film shows a lot of bravery choosing to just focus on one part of a legend’s life and before his heyday.
That’s it from me. Any queries, quibbles, questions etc, please drop me a tweet @timmy666.
It’s my birthday this weekend, so I will be treating myself to a few film screenings (nothing different from normal!). I hope that you are able to as well. Have a great week at the cinema and tune in next week for more #AtTheFlix. Too-de-loo.