Virtual-Lancaster Cinema Page. Read on for the weekly round-up, and reviews.
We have three new releases during this period. Horror with The Quiet Ones (15); adventure with The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (12A) and cartoon adventure with Khumba (U).
On the other hand we have lost 300: Rise of an Empire, The Book Thief and Need for Speed. However the films Epic and Mr. Peabody and Sherman are again being screened.
There are a number of excellent films currently being screened, including Science Fiction adventure with Divergent & Captain America: The Winter Soldier; Big screen drama with Noah and comedy with Muppets Most Wanted.
For alternative viewing pleasure the compelling Under the Skin can be recommended at the Dukes. They also have a one day viewing of 12 Years a Slave in case you have not yet caught this must see movie.
12 Years a Slave
Director: Steve McQueen
Cast Includes: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Benedict Cumberbatch, Brad Pitt, Sarah Paulson, Michael Fassbender
Set in the 1800s, New York black man Solomon Northup (Chiwetel
Ejiofor) is drugged, kidnapped and sold as a slave to a New Orleans
Plantation. Here he works for slave-master Epps (Michael Fassbender)
who is a sadist, dishing out sexual abuse. The film is based on an 1853
memoir by Solomon Northup, the script being co-written by Steve McQueen
and John Ridley. This is one of the finest films about American
Slavery. It is very visceral, with Nothup trying to maintain dignity
amidst the violence of the movie. Very well shot and splendidly acted,
this is the must see film for 2014.
Director: Neil Burger
Cast includes: Kate Winslet, Theo James, Shailene Woodley
The movie is based on Veronica Roth's popular trilogy. Tris
(Woodley) is a 16 year old girl living in Chicago after a war which
wiped out most of civilisation. Society has been divided into different
factions and as teens come of age they undergo tests to decide which
faction will contain them. Yet Tris proves to be divergent, not fitting
into any of the factions and divergent people are considered a threat
to the status quo. She must work with the mysterious Four (James) to
determine why being divergent is considered to be so dangerous. The
movie is rather a slow starter. However the cast is full of talent,
there is some nice dialogue and the film finishes with a tense climax. A
must see movie if you have read and enjoyed Roth's books.
Director: Shana Feste
Cast includes: Alex Pettyfer, Gabriella Wilde
All the classic ingredients of teen romance when privileged girl
Jade meets handsome boy David but their parents try to keep them apart.
David exacerbated the situation when a stupid prank results in the
destruction of Jade's house. The movie is based on the novel of the
same name by Scott Spencer but struggles to capture the power of the
original, leaving a film that does not really explore the characters of
the lovers and fails to convince an audience.
Director: Chris Wedge
Cast Includes: Amanda Seyfried, Beyonce Knowles, Colin Farrell
An animation for all the family from the people who made Ice
Age and Rio. Mary Katherine (MK), a young girl who has recently lost
her mother, moves in with her scientist father. He is engaged in
observing the tiny folk who live in a nearby forest, and MK finds
herself transported into this miniature realm. Here she joins a team of
comical characters to save the world. This film has excellent
animation and introduces a number of particularly cute and funny
characters. It is aimed at children and should not fail to entertain.
However for this reviewer it did not quite live up the the Ice Age
Director: Chris Buck
Cast Includes Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Josh Gad,Alan Tudyk, Jonathan Groff
This Disney musical animation is loosely based on the fairy tale
'The Snow Queen' who has condemned a kingdom to eternal winter. It is
up to Anna (sister to the snow queen) and a loner Kristoff to undertake
an epic journey to find the Snow Queen and convince her to lift the icy
spell. This is a magical movie destined to become a classic. It will
appeal to families and children of all ages.
Mr Peabody & Sherman
Director: Rob Minkoff
Cast Includes: Ty Burrell, Max Charles, Ariel Winter
A DreamWorks comedy animation. Mr Peabody is a dog, but
this does not stop him being an inventor, scientist, sportsman and
general genius. Accompanied by his boy Sherman, the duo use their WABAC
time machine in order to impress Sherman's friend Penny. However
during their adventures meeting famous characters of history,they
accidentally rip a hole in the Universe. As a result they must repair
history in order to save the future. A great yarn and appealing family
movie. There is little here to offend the youngest of children, and
some of the jokes will entertain an older audience.
Muppets Most Wanted
Director: James Bobin
Cast includes: Ricky Gervais, Ty Burrell, Tina Fey, Eric Jacobson, Steve Whitmire
A long awaited sequel to 'The Muppets' in which the entire Muppet
cast undertake a sell out world tour. However Constantine (a Kermit
lookalike and major criminal) and his right hand man Dominic (Gervais)
involve the Muppets in an international crime heist. The film is an
upbeat Disney musical comedy that will appeal to all ages and generates
plenty of laughs. An excellent film.
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Cast includes: Russell Crowe, Emma Watson, Jennifer Connelly, Anthony Hopkins
A movie based on the biblical story of Noah and the flood, but it
takes quite a bit of artistic license. Crowe and Watson as Noah and Ila
respectively give excellent performances and this is epic movie which
very much goes its own way. With stunning effects and some surreal
sequences this is a very entertaining film.
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Director: Wes Anderson
Cast includes: Saoirse Ronan, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, Tony Revolori
An idiosyncratic movie telling the adventures of Gustav (Fiennes)
the concierge at the Budapest hotel and his friend Zero Moustafa
(Revolori). The film is full of madcap characters and is filmed in the
classic Anderson style. Set in Europe between the wars, the film tells
the story of the theft of a Renaissance painting and disputes over
fortunes. The movie has a star-studded cast and much of the plot of
interlocking stories is told in flashbacks. A fine comedy making this a
must see movie.
The Quiet Ones
Director: John Pogue
Cast includes: Sam Claflin, Erin Richards, Jared Harris, Olivia Cooke
A Hammer Horror film set in 1974. Professor Coupland (Harris),
helped by a group of university students, relocates to a country estate
in order to try an unorthodox cure for a mentally unstable woman Jane
Harper (Cooke) with malignant alter ego Evey. The experiment is
recorded by cameraman Brian McNeil (Claflin). This is a stylish movie
with impressive visual effects. However the performances of the
students are a little wooden and the film does not break any new ground.
However in all a competent and gripping horror film.