Virtual-Lancaster Cinema Page. Read on for the weekly round-up, and reviews.
The big event of the week is the release of the science fiction adventure Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (12A). In addition there are two other family adventure films released: Earth to Echo (PG) and Pudsey the Dog: The Movie. For something completely different we also have Monty Python Live (Mostly) being screened at all three local cinemas.
This period sees the loss of Chef, Edge of Tomorrow and Belle. However we see the return of the Walt Disney modern classic Frozen.
Culture is represented by NT Live: Skylight starring Bill Nighy and Carey Mulligan. Also of interest is the digitally restored version of the Beatles film A Hard Days Night (15).
22 Jump Street
Director: Phil Lord and Chris Miller
Cast Includes: Jonah Hill, Peter Stormare, Channing Tatum, Amber Stevens, Ice Cube
The movie finds Police officers Schmidt (Hill) and Jenko (Tatum)
working undercover at a local college to investigate supply of an
illegal drug. Actually the movie is a deliberate re-hash of the earlier
'21 Jump Street', but this still makes it a zany comedy with humour
ranging from slapstick thought parody to the surreal. Well rated and
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Director: Matt Reeves
Cast includes: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Jason Clarke, Gary Oldman, Keri Russell
This movie is already proving a success at the US box office and has
the makings of a summer blockbuster. The film is set a decade after
'Rise of the Planet of the Apes'. Much of humanity has been wiped out
following an outbreak of an artificial virus which killed humans yet
increased the intelligence of apes. Human and ape live in a state of
fragile peace and the film explores the conflict that arises when the
humans try to start a hydroelectric dam that is located in the apes
territory. The first part of the movie builds the characters of both
humans and apes and later there are very impressive special effects as
hostilities commence between the two sides. Both apes and humans have
understandable motives and thus the film is much more than a simple war
between right and wrong. An excellent movie.
Earth to Echo
Director: Dave Green
Cast includes: Teo Halm, Ella Linnea Wahlestedt, Reese C. Hartwig, Jason Gray-Stanford
A construction project is destroying a neighbourhood when a group of
friends start to receive strange signals on their phones. They search
for the origin of the signals and discover an alien who has become
trapped on earth. The film tells the story of the youngsters as they
battle the government and help the alien return to his home. It is hard
not to compare this film with 'E.T.' However the movie is really about
the youthful friendships rather than an extra-terrestrial. A
entertaining if rather average family film.
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.
Director: Clint Eastwood
Cast Includes: Erich Bergen, Michael Lomenda, John Lloyd Young, Christopher Walken, Vincent Piazza
A film version of an award winning musical telling the story of the
formation of the rock group 'The Four Seasons'. This in an entertaining
movie that succeeds in recreating the rock and roll era. The highs and
lows of the working class band members are explored against a backdrop
of fine musical accompaniments.
Director: Robert Stromberg
Cast Includes: Angelina Jolie, Miranda Richardson, Elle Fanning, Sharlto Copley, Sam Riley
In part a re-telling of the tale of sleeping beauty but from the
point of view of the villain of the story, Maleficent (Jolie).
Maleficent was driven to evil following an act of betrayal which cost
her the ability to fly. She battles to save her shadowy forest kingdom
and plots revenge by placing a curse on the infant Aurora (Fanning),
daughter to the king. Aurora herself becomes caught in the conflict
between forest and human kingdoms. This is a rather dark fantasy for a
Disney film, but a great tale with powerful characters and impressive
Mrs Brown's Boys D'Movie
Director: Ben Kellett
Cast includes: Brendan O'Carroll
Agnes Brown (O'Carroll) is a market trader who finds her livelihood
under threat from a property developer. Supported by her family she
embarks on a crusade to save her stall. This is a movie adaption of the
well known and much loved BBC comedy and the film was extremely
successful in its opening weekend. This is a very capable comedy that
captures the spirit of the TV series.
Director: Ben Falcone
Cast includes: Melissa McCarthy, Susan Sarandon, Dan Aykroyd
In one awful day Tammy (McCarthy) has been fired from her job,
crashed her car and discovered her husbands fondness for a neighbour.
She needs to escape and thus joins her grandmother Pearl (Sarandon) in a
trip to see the Niagara Falls. McCarthy plays the working class slob
Tammy to perfection and her grandmother lusts after men and drink.
Hence the film is a road movie with all the ingredients of a first class
comedy. However the elements do not quite come together and the film
does not achieve its full potential.
The Fault in our Stars
Director: Josh Boone
Cast Includes: Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, Laura Dern, Nat Wolff, Mike Birbiglia, Willem Dafoe
A romance between Hazel (Woodley) and Gus (Elgort), teenagers who
have just months to live when they meet at a cancer support group. The
movie is based on the best selling novel by John Green and it is
predominantly aimed at a young adult audience. With an excellent
dialogue the film is a very moving love story that could easily leave
you in tears.