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Rebourne: Doctor Sleep (2019)

“Dare to Go Back”

Directed by Mike Flanagan
Starring Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson, Kyliegh Curran and Cliff Curtis

The Original

Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), an author and recovering alcoholic, is struggling with his next book, as well as the bottle. He takes a job as winter caretaker in the Overlook Hotel, a mountain lodge left empty for the season, hoping to get some writing done and reconnect with his wife, Wendy (Shelley Duvall), and son Danny (Danny Lloyd). Unfortunately, the malevolent spirit of the hotel gets its hooks into Jack, intent on destroying Danny and his paranormal abilities, the titular ‘shining’.

The Shining is widely acknowledged as one of the greatest horror movies ever made – critical opinions aside, it contains scenes which have been parodied over and over again, and had a pastiche in a Simpsons ‘Treehouse of Horror’ episode – although not by Stephen King, author of the novel on which it was based. King took issue with director Stanley Kubrik’s treatment of the original story, eventually producing a new adaptation which was a) much more faithful, and b) quite dull. He also wrote a sequel, Doctor Sleep, which eventually got an adaptation of its own.

The Late Sequel

I’ll be honest, Rose the Hat is an effectively creepy villain right up until you start hearing her name sung to the theme tune of the children’s cartoon ‘James the Cat’.

Danny ‘Doc’ Torrance (Roger Dale Floyd) begins to recover from the horrors of the Overlook Hotel when the spirit of hotel cook and fellow Shiner Dick Halloran (Carl Lumbly) teaches him to trap the ghosts that haunt him in boxes in his head. Years later, he has become an alcoholic Ewan McGregor, using booze to numb his abilities, until all-round nice guy Billy Freeman (Curtis) helps him turn his life around and he gets a job as night porter in a hospice, where he becomes known as Doctor Sleep among the patients for his ability to ease them from life when their time comes.

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GEMINI MAN (2019)

“Who will save you from yourself”

Directed by Ang Lee (Hulk)
Starring Will Smith (After Earth), Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter), Clive Owen (Last Knights) and Benedict Wong (Doctor Strange)

Worn down by his life as a government assassin, Henry Brogan (Smith) retires, but when an old contact reveals that his last target was an innocent man, he is plunged into conflict with the US Government and PMC Gemini, led by Brogan’s former boss, Clay Varris (Owen). Teaming up with Dani (Winstead), a junior agent set to monitor his retirement, and his old buddy Baron (Wong), Brogan sets out to uncover the secrets behind his last assignment, but finds himself pursued by a younger assassin who turns out to be a younger clone of himself (also Smith).

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Angel Has Fallen (2019)

“Loyalty is Under Fire”

Directed by Ric Roman Waugh
Starring Gerard Butler (Gods of Egypt), Morgan Freeman (Lucy), Jada Pinkett Smith (The Matrix Reloaded), Lance Reddick (John Wick), Tim Blake Nelson (Fantastic Four), Piper Perabo (Beverly Hills Chihuahua), Nick Nolte (The Spiderwick Chronicles) and Danny Huston (Wonder Woman)

Struggling with the health impact of too many action blockbusters, Secret Service Agent Mike Banning (Butler) is faced with the possibility of a desk job and more time with his wife Leah (Perabo) and daughter, while his old army buddy Wade Jennings (Huston) is struggling to make ends meet with the US government no longer employing his PMC and totally not planning to betray his old buddy.

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The Current War (2017*)

“Power Changes Everything

Directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon
Starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Shannon, Katherine Waterston, Tom Holland, Tuppence Middleton, Matthew Macfadyen and Nicholas Hoult

In the latter years of the 19th century, a feud arises as quixotic entrepreneur Thomas Edison (Cumberbatch) and industrial titan George Westinghouse (Shannon) clash over the supply of electric lighting and power. Edison has the superior electric bulbs, Westinghouse’s alternating current can supply power over a longer distance; Westinghouse seeks collaboration, but Edison is determined to retain sole control.

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Overlord (2018)

“Every Soldier Must Face Their Demons”

Directed by Julius Avery
Starring Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell, Mathilde Ollivier, John Magaro, Gianny Taufer, Pilou Asbæk and Iain De Caestecker

On D-Day, a US Paratrooper squad is shot down en route to destroy a key radio tower. Surviving the drop and Nazi forces on the ground, Privates Boyce (Adepo), Tibbet (Magaro) and Chase (De Caestecker) regroup under the driven veteran Corporal Ford (Russell) and attempt to complete the mission, with the aid of local scavenger Chloe (Ollivier).

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Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again (2019)

“Here We Go Again”

Directed by Ol Parker
Starring Amanda Seyfried, Lily James, Christine Baranski, Jessica Keenan Wynn, Julie Walters, Alexa Davies, Pierce Brosnan, Jeremy Irvine, Colin Firth, Hugh Skinner, Stellan Skarsgård, Josh Dylan, Dominic Cooper, Andy Garcia, Cher and Meryl Streep

We join Sophie Sheridan (Seyfried) as she prepares to reopen the hotel she has inherited from her mother, Donna (Streep), a year after the latter’s death, supported by hotel manager Snr. Cienfegos (Garcia), her local father, Sam (Brosnan) and her mother’s best friends Tanya (Baranski) and Rosie (Walters). Unfortunately, her other dads – Bill (Skarsgård) and Harry (Firth) – are unable to make it, and her partner Sky (Cooper) is delayed in New York, where he is learning the hotel trade, but has been tempted by an offer of a permanent job. As the stresses pile up on Sophie, flashbacks take us to the earlier life of Donna (James), who graduates from Oxford with Tanya (Wynn) and Rosie (Davies) in 1979, and sets out to travel across Europe.

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Rampage (2018)

Rampage“Big Meets Bigger”

Directed by Brad Peyton
Starring Dwayne Johnson, Naomie Harris, Malin Åkerman, Jake Lacy, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Joe Manganiello

In a stricken orbital lab, Dr Atkins (Marley Shelton) is forced by her boss, Claire Wyden (Åkerman), to retrieve biological samples before being allowed into an escape pod. She gets out, but a giant, mutant rat busts up the pod, which implodes on re-entry leaving the three sample cases to fall to Earth.

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Upside Down (2012)

So, if he’s Adam, is she God?

“Two worlds. One future.” (The English taglines are a real letdown compared to the French ‘And if love were stronger than gravity?’)

Directed by Juan Diego Solanas
Starring Jim Sturgess, Kirsten Dunst and Timothy Spall

Adam and Eden are childhood sweethearts, pulled apart by false accusations, different social status, and the fact that they live on opposing planets in a binary world in which any given thing is only subject to the gravity of one world.

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Ready Player One (2018)

In the novel, the real identities of various characters are kept as a surprise. Cinema doesn’t roll that way.

“A Better Reality Awaits*”

Directed by Steven Spielberg
Starring Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, Lena Thwaite, Philip Zhao, Win Morisaki, T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg, Mark Rylance and Hannah John-Kamen

In 2045, with much of the world in the proverbial toilet, vast swathes of the population spend their lives in the OASIS, a vast, persistent virtual reality universe. On his death, the creator of the OASIS, James Halliday (Rylance), set a challenge: The person who discovered three keys and clues leading to an Easter egg in the OASIS would inherit his personal estate and complete control of the system. Some years later, the search for the Egg is contested between freelance ‘Gunters’ like Wade Watts (Sheridan), known in the OASIS as Parzival, and his friend Aech (Thwaite), and the ‘Sixers’, almost literally faceless corporate goons employed by IOI, a company keen to monetise the OASIS, which they already use as an indentured labour camp for debtors.

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Eyeborgs (2009)

“Nowhere to Run. Nowhere to Hide.”

Directed by Richard Clabaugh
Starring Adrian Paul, Megan Blake, Luke Eberl, Danny Trejo

Next Sunday AD, and after one too many terrorist attacks the US has passed the Freedom of Observation Act, creating a unified surveillance system linking all security cameras to the Optical Defence Intelligence Network (ODIN – because naming your computer after a god couldn’t possibly go wrong.) DHS Agent Gunner (Paul) follows up intel provided by ODIN’s mobile cameras – the titular eyeborgs – and stumbles on a plot, seemingly to assassinate the president.

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