Category Archives: 31-40%

Early Man (2018)

“Real Men Don’t Settle For Bronze”

Directed by Nick Park
Starring Eddie Redmayne, Tom Hiddleston, Maisie Williams and Timothy Spall

Somewhere around about the dawn of time, the meteor that killed the dinosaurs also carved out a sheltered, fertile valley, where a Stone Age tribe modestly prospered until the ruthless Lord Nooth (Hiddleston) and his Francophone, Bronze Age cohorts arrive to kick the out and mine the valley for bronze. Most of the tribe, led by their Chief, Bobnar (Spall), slope off into the volcanic badlands, but young Dug (Redmayne) follows the invaders to their city, where he challenges their champion football team, Real Bronzio, for the future of the valley.

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The Greatest Showman (2017)

This is a film about PT Barnum, with apparently no tagline; this feels wrong.

Directed by Michael Gracey
Starring Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron, Michelle Williams, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya

Tailor’s boy Phineas Barnum (Jackman, once he grows up) sets out into the world to make a fortune, so that he can support his childhood sweetheart Charity (Williams) in the manner to which, as the daughter of a great family, she is accustomed. After years of struggle and with two lively daughters to support, Barnum parlays a gift for flim flam into a museum of curiosities, which becomes a huge success after he hits on the idea of including a show featuring living, human ‘oddities’.

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Bright (2017)

Directed by David Ayer
Starring Will Smith, Joel Edgerton, Noomi Rapace, Lucy Fry, Édgar Ramírez, Ike Barinholtz and Happy Anderson

LA cop Daryl Ward (Smith) has been partnered with Nick Jakoby (Edgerton), the first orcish cop in a world where magical races live side by side with humans – apart from the Elves, who have their own exclusive, gated communities, because fucking elves, yo – which has not proven a marriage made in heaven. With the department pushing to set Jakoby up for a fall, the pair stumble across a magical crime scene and custody of an elf magician, Tika (Fry) and a wand.

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Justice League (2017)

Yeah, spoilers; Superman is back.

“Unite the League”

Directed by Zack Snyder (and Joss Whedon)
Starring Gal Gadot, Ben Afflex, Jason Momoa, Ray Fisher, Ezra Miller, Henry Cavill and Ciaran Hinds

In the wake of Superman’s death, the world is going a bit crazy. Wonder Woman (Gadot) and Batman (Afflek) try to keep a lid on things, but when Steppenwolf (Hinds) shows up and steals an artefact called the Mother Box from the Amazons, it’s time to bring together the metahumans identified by Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg): Arthur ‘Aquaman’ Curry (Momoa), Barry ‘The Flash’ Allen (Miller), and Victor ‘Cyborg’ Stone (Fisher).

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Murder on the Orient Express (2017)

“Everyone is a suspect”

Directed by Kenneth Branagh
Starring Kenneth Branagh, Penélope Cruz, Willem Dafoe, Judi Dench, Johnny Depp, Josh Gad, Derek Jacobi, Leslie Odom Jr., Michelle Pfeiffer, Daisy Ridley, Marwan Kenzari, Olivia Colman, Lucy Boynton, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Sergei Polunin and Tom Bateman

Spoiler warning: While this is a brand new murder mystery film at the time of writing, the source which it follows is decades old and one of the most famous whodunnits of the golden age. I will therefore be discussing the solution, at least in passing.

After solving a tricky problem in Jerusalem by shamelessly abusing the Wailing Wall, world famous Belgian detective Hercule Poirot (Branagh) and his fabulous moustaches are summoned to assist with a tricky case in London. A friend in the company, unapologetic hedonist Bouc (Bateman) gets him a berth on the overbooked Orient Express from Istanbul, alongside an eclectic bunch of travelers. On the first day of travel, he is approached by Mr Ratchett (Depp), a shady American antique dealer, who wants to hire him to watch for his enemies, but refuses. That night, the train is caught in an avalanche and derailed, and Ratchett is murdered.

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My Little Pony: The Movie (2017)

The 80s nerd in me is sad that it isn’t The My Little Pony: The Movie. I guess you’ll either get that or you won’t.

“Friendship Comes in Many Colours”

Directed by Jayson Thiessen
Starring Uzo Aduba, Ashleigh Ball, Emily Blunt, Kristin Chenoweth, Taye Diggs, Andrea Libman, Michael Peña, Zoe Saldana, Liev Schreiber, Sia, Tabitha St. Germain, Tara Strong, Cathy Weseluck

As Equestria prepares for its first Friendship Festival, under the guiding hoof of Princess Twilight Sparkle (Strong), all are united in Harmony; until the Fire Nation Storm King’s armada attacks unexpectedly, capturing the Princesses Celestia(Nicole Oliver), Luna (St. Germain) and Cadence (Britt McKillip). Twilight and her friends – Applejack and Rainbow Dash (Ball), Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy (Libman), Rarity (St Germain), and Spike the Dragon (Weseluck) – barely escape from Commander Tempest (Blunt), a unicorn with a broken horn, and her hapless goon Grubber (Pena), with only a partial instruction from Celestia to go south and seek the Queen of the Hippos.

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Hotel Transylvania 2 (2015)

“Drac’s pack is back.”

Directed by Genddy Tartakovsky
Starring Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Steve Buscemi, David Spade, Keegan-Michael Key, Mel Brooks

Dracula (Sandler) oversees the marriage of his daughter Mavis (Gomez) and her human boyfriend Johnny (Samberg), opening the Hotel Transylvania to non-monsters with the aid of buddies Frank (James), Wayne (Buscemi), Griffin (Spade) and Murray (Key) (Frankenstein’s monster, a werewolf, the Invisible Man and a mummy.) Not long after, Mavis announces her pregnancy, and soon the family is joined by Dennis (Asher Blinkoff).

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Sing (2016)

“Auditions begin 2016”

Directed by Garth Jennings
Starring Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon, Seth MacFarlane, Scarlett Johansson, John C. Reilly, Taron Egerton, Tori Kelly

Theatrical impresario Buster Moon (McConaughey) attempts to revitalise his failing theatre with a singing competition, accidentally offering a $100,000 prize. While Rosita (Witherspoon), Mike (MacFarlane), Ash (Johanssen), Meena (Kelly) and Johnny (Egerton) are all drawn to the competition for their own reasons, Buster’s best friend Eddie (Reilly) tries to persuade him that perhaps he needs to give up the theatre before it breaks him.

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King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)

This is not your grandfather’s King Arthur.

“From Nothing Comes a King”

Directed by Guy Ritchie
Starring Charlie Hunnam, Àstrid Bergès-Frisbey, Djimon Hounsou, Aidan Gillen, Jude Law, Eric Bana

In the mists of historyish, the wise and valiant King Uther (Bana) is besieged by an army of barbarians and giant, infernal elephants led by the Mage Sorcerer Mordred, because if we’re going to fuck this myth then by God we’re going to fuck it hard and we’re going to fuck it from the word go. He defeats Mordred with the aid of the sword of awesomeness, Excalibur, but is betrayed by his brother Vortigern (Law). Uther and his Queen are murdered, but their son Arthur survives, floating downriver to Londinium.

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Rebourne: Power Rangers (2017)

This understated early poster is pretty cool.

“It’s Morphin’ Time”

Directed by Dean Israelite
Starring Dacre Montgomery, Naomi Scott, RJ Cyler, Becky G, Ludi Lin, Bill Hader, Bryan Cranston, Elizabeth Banks

The Original

After astronauts on the Moon open a space dumpster and release the space witch Rita Repulsa, space wizard Zordon and his irritating robot sidekick recruit five ‘teenagers with attitude’ to become the Power Rangers and battle Rita, launching a multi-series franchise which worked by revamping many largely unconnected Japanese super sentai series through a mix of voice dubbing and new footage for the Western market.


The Reboot

On primeval Earth, a team of armoured, alien warriors led by Zordon (Cranston) are killed battling an enemy named Rita (Banks), but drop a rock on her before she can seize the crystal she was pursuing. Millennia after, the town of Angel Grove has grown up over the site. High school football star Jason Scott (Montgomery) wrecks his future by sneaking a cow into a rival school’s locker room then crashing his car while fleeing police. He winds up in long-term detention with disgraced cheerleader Kimberley Hart (Scott) and autistic tinkerer Billy Cranston (Cyler), and the three of them end up at the town’s gold mine at the same time as the rebellious Trini (G) and reckless Zack (Lin) when Billy unearths a wall of volcanic glass from which they remove five medallions which quickly prove to have mysterious powers.

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