Directed by Kenneth Branagh Starring Ferdia Shaw, Lara McDonnell, Josh Gad (Frozen II), Tamara Smart, Nonso Anozie (Pan), Colin Farrell (Total Recall) and Judi Dench (Cats)
Eleven year old Artemis Fowl (Shaw) learns of the existence of the People, a civilisation of fairy beings living in a city close to Earth’s core, when his father, Artemis Sr. (Farrell) is kidnapped by a pixie named Opal Koboi, and his abductor demands Artemis provide ‘the Aculos’ in return for his father’s life.
In a fantasy land well into its post-heroic age, magic is a thing of the past, having been abandoned in favour of the more reliable forces of science. Ian Lightfoot (Holland) is an elf high schooler who misses the presence of his late father in a family dynamic with his caring but overwhelmed mother, Laurel (Louis-Dreyfus), over-exuberant fantacist brother, Barley (Pratt), and Laurel’s new boyfriend Colt (Mel Rodriguez), a stuffy centaur police officer. On his sixteenth birthday, he and Barley receive a bequest from their father: A wizard’s staff and a spell to allow them to summon their father back to life for one day.
Cecilia Kass (Moss) leaves her abusive boyfriend, wealthy optics specialist Adrian Griffin (Jackson-Cohen), with the help of her sister Emily (Dyer) . Two weeks later, hiding out with Emily’s friend James (Hodge) and his teenage daughter Sydney (Reid), she learns that Adrian has committed suicide, and learns from his brother Tom (Dorman) that Adrian left her five million dollars and a passive aggressive letter. Initially feeling liberated, a series of incidents cause Cecelia to believe that Adrian is stalking her, having found a way to become invisible.
Peter Rabbit (Corden) live in the Lake District with his sisters, Flopsy (Robbie), Mopsy (Debicki) and Cottontail (Ridley), and their cousin Benjamin (Moody), raiding the garden of grumpy Mr MacGregor (Neill), who killed their father and wants to eat them in one or more pies, and enjoying the kindness of his neighbour Bea (Byrne), an artist and rabbit-lover who has been their surrogate mother since their own parents died. When MacGregor’s pursuit of Peter provokes a fatal heart attack, the rabbits claim the garden for their own, but a previously unknown great nephew, Thomas MacGregor (Gleeson) proves an obstacle.
Dr John Dolittle (Downey Jr.) is a doctor who can talk to animals, and who – together with his wife, Lily (Kasia Smutniak) – travels the world, rescuing animals and bringing them back to a sanctuary granted to them by a grateful Queen Victoria (Jessie Buckley). After Lily is killed in an animated sailing incident, Dolittle becomes a recluse, until his parrot Polynesia (Thompson) leads young Stubbins (Collett) into the grounds with injured squirrel Kevin (Robinson), on the same day that Lady Rose (Carmel Laniado) enters the estate to summon Dolittle to attend the desperately ill Queen.
Directed by Autumn de Wilde Starring Anya Taylor-Joy, Johnny Flynn, Mia Goth, Bill Nighy, Miranda Hart, Josh O’Connor, Callum Turner, Rupert Graves, Gemma Whelan, Amber Anderson, Tanya Reynolds and Connor Swindells
Beautiful, intelligent, rich, aristocratic and infinitely self-satisfied, Emma Woodhouse (Taylor-Joy) sees herself as the pinnacle of both sense and sensibility in her social circle. Not wishing to surrender herself to matrimony, she instead sets about finding matches for her friends, beginning with matching her governess, Miss Taylor (Whelan), with amiable local widower Mr Weston (Graves), before moving on to her new friend, Harriet Smith (Goth), and seeking to find a socially advantageous match for ‘the natural daughter of nobody knows who.’
Directed by Jeff Fowler (feature debut) Starring James Marsden (X-Men: The Last Stand), Ben Schwartz (The Lego Movie 2), Tika Sumpter (Ride Along) and Jim Carrey (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind)
Sonic (Schwartz) is a hedgehog, with the power to move at incredible speed. To keep that power from the wrong hands, his mentor and mother-figure Longclaw (Donna Jay Fulks) sends him through a sufficiently advanced scientific ring to safety. Sonic spends years living in secret near the town of Green Hills, developing a one-sided relationship with its inhabitants, especially ‘Doughnut Lord’ – local sheriff Tom Wachowski (Marsden) – and ‘Pretzel Lady’ – his wife, veterinarian Maddie (Sumpter). When Sonic’s frustration at his lonelieness finally gets the best of him, his temper sprinting releases a massive EMP and draws the attention of the government and their staff mad scientist, Ivo Robotnik (Carrey).
* aka Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey, the title having been changed after a week in some sort of desperate hope that the poor opening was due to the title burying the lede rather than the studio opting to open an action movie in Febraury.
After breaking up with the Joker, Harley Quinn (Robbie) hits rock bottom, finally blowing up the chemical factory where she was ‘reborn’ in a symbolic rejection of his toxic influence on her life. This leaves her without the protection afforded by the fear Joker commands in the underworld, and everyone she ever wronged, in particular crime boss Roman Sionis (McGregor) and his henchan Zsasz (Messina) , comes gunning for her.
In the late 19th century, the March sisters – Jo (Ronan), Meg (Watson), Amy (Pugh) and Beth (Scanlen) – live with their mother, Marmee (Dern) while their father (Odenkirk) is fighting in the Civil War. The family has little money, but still supports their less fortunate neighbours, while being themselves supported by their neighbours Laurie (Chalamet) and his grandfather, Mr Laurence (Cooper).
Directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah Starring Will Smith (Gemini Man), Martin Lawrence (Big Momma’s House), Vanessa Hudgens (Sucker Punch), Alexander Ludwig (The Seeker: The Dark is Rising), Charles Melton (The Sun is Also a Star), Paola Núñez (El cumple de la abuela), Kate del Castillo (The Book of Life), Nicky Jam (XXX: The Return of Xander Cage) and Joe Pantoliano (The Matrix)
Bad Boys was a 1995 action buddy comedy, notable as the feature debut of Michael Bay (Transformers et al), as a part of the inexorable rise to greatness of rapper and sitcom star Smith, and as pretty much the zenith of the movie career of stand up comic Lawrence. Smith and Lawrence played Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett, Miami detective sergeants in a classic and utterl unironic maverick mould. Lifelong friends, the playboyish Lowrey and happily married Burnett are forced by a series of shenanigans to swap identities to make contact with a witness (Tea Leoni) in a major heroin case. Hilarity ensued through a series of misunderstandings and a lot of people got shot.
‘Bad Boys’ by The Inner Circle – famous as the theme tune to the documentary show Cops – was their theme song.
In 2003, producer Jerry Bruckheimer went back to the well, reuniting Bay, Smith and Lawrence with co-star Joe Pantoliano as the pair’s long-suffering captain, for a case which saw them taking on Cubans, Russians and ecstasy smuggling, and throwing in some relationship drama as Mike dated Marcus’s sister Syd (Gabrielle Union), an undercover DEA agent.
I have actually never seen Bad Boys II, but it sounds like much of a type with the original.
The Late Sequel
There was then a seventeen year break, before Bruckheimer got the band back together – or most of them, Bay being replaced as director by Belgian duo El Arbi and Fallah – for the obligatory ‘we are not too old for this shit’ installment.
Marcus is considering retirement after the birth of his first grandson. Mike is determined to keep going as he is, despite Marcus’s attempts to make him see that he ought to take a second chance on a relationship with fellow career cop Rita (Nunez). Meanwhile, bruxa jailbird Isabel Aretas (del Castillo) is broken out of prison by her son, Armando (Jacob Scipio), whom she sends to Miami to take revenge on those who destroyed her family, culminating with Mike Lowery.