The Big Short (15)
This week’s biggest release, this adaptation of Michael Lewis’s non-fiction best seller, provides a dark satirical take on the financial crash. It tells the story of a bunch smart misfit analysts who made their fortune when they predicted the bubble was going to burst back in 2005.
Anchorman director Adam McKay’s black comedy benefits from a zippy, informative and quirky approach alongside the multiple talents of great cast (Bale, Gosling, Carrell, Pitt), some of whom do that thing of ‘wigging up’ and altering their appearance a bit, because that’s what you do! Amongst the film’s many artistic oddities, expect lots of asides, cameos and assaults on the fourth wall.
This is a film that dares to entertain, inform and appal in equal measure. I’m converted.
The 5th Wave (15)
If alien invasions and a slice of apocalypse are your thing then The 5th Wave aims to peek your interest! This well-trodden cinematic setup is an adaptation of Rick Yancey’s book. At the heart of the film is a simple tale with Chloe Moritz attempting to provide some ‘small scale human’ dynamics to a high body count film in an attempt save her brother.
The film eschews a dystopian backdrop for something a little more familiar which allows for the alien devastation to be that much more cutting! That alone might sustain the film’s interest. Judging by the critics, the narrative might not be one of the film’s strengths.
Our Brand is Crisis (15)
The other satire to hit the cinemas this week is the big film adaptation of the 2005 documentary of the same name, which follows a management company who are recruiting by the failing Bolivian president to turn around his predicament. Sandra Bullock plays a talented strategist with a damaged past who comes face-to-face with her nemesis played by Billy Bob Thornton. Cue the film’s satirical setup.
David Gordon Green’s film has a grand setup and provides plenty of opportunity for weighty satire and a cynical take on politics. That said, the film hasn’t quite ignited the excitement of critics Stateside. That said, Bullock’s performance has been widely praised and is probably the main reason to watch!
Ride Along 2 (15)
Ice Cube and Kevin Hart return as bickering buddies, and now both cops assigned from Atlanta to Miami to work with their PD to take down a drug lord played by Benjamin Bratt. The film effectively plays out as one long comedic schtick for Hart to do his notoriously energetic histrionics. I guess much of your enjoyment of this film will be determined by whether you find it funny!
Truthfully, when I saw the trailer for this, I had to remind myself of Ride Along or perhaps I didn’t need or want to remind myself?
Star Men (PG)
Showing at the mac (Mon 25-Thurs 28), Alison Rose’s touching documentary follows four astronauts on a road trip as they celebrate 50 years of work together, a portrait of lifelong friendships, old age, facing death and reminiscence at their life in astronomy and space.
Finally The Electric continue their excellent Cinematic Time Machine season with Sunday showings of Buster Keaton’s 1928 silent classic, Steamboat Bill, Jr. (U) and the eponymous Singing in the Rain (U).
That's it from me. As is usual, any queries or comments, please let me know at @timmy666 on twitter. Have a great week and be sure to support your local cinemas.