Welcome one and all to this week’s #AtTheFlix, a round-up of the releases out in Birmingham.
Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, The (PG)
Building on the huge hit of the original, the sequel picks up eight months on, as talk of a Marigold Hotel chain starts, relationships develop and characters continue to explore India’s many delights.
The obvious draw of this film is the brilliant cast doing what they’re doing, and this means professionally and well. Of course, there’s also the love of Indian landscape and culture.
I’m not expecting war and peace but I am hoping for a joyous way to spend a few hours at the cinema.
Nicky (Will Smith) becomes romantically involved with novice con artist Jess (Margot Robbie) and a heist/con movie ensues, a game of cat and mouse.
Despite what looks like a glossy riff on numerous film precedents, and an attractive lead couple, there’s something predictable about the set up.
I am also wondering if this is one of those February films buried behind the award season. It appears to have fallen into that category.
It Follows (15)
Getting critical acclaim virtually everywhere, It Follows appears to be one of the stand-out horror films of recent times up there in the pantheon with 2014`s The Babadook.
All goes awry for a teenage girl after a seemingly innocent sexual encounter leads to strange visions and inescapable terror that someone, or something, is following her. Here ensues a tale of dread and proper chills.
The film has been praised for its natural ability to leave a mark on you well after leaving the big screen. It is packed full of references but does so to serve the horror.
A stand out for 2015 so far.
Boy Next Door, The (15)
J Lo plays a divorced woman whose affair with her teenage neighbour takes an obsessive, dangerous turn.
Cue the second stalker film of this week, albeit far more conventional and far less scary, with a sort of pseudo-sexual overtone.
Judging by the critics, feedback has ranged from the film being unintentionally comic to just being limp.
There’s clearly B-movie written all over this and given this is directed by Rob Cohen (The Fast and The Furious) this should hardly be seen as surprising.
Beyond the mainstream releases this week, at the mac, there is the opportunity to see Bad Hair (15), the acclaimed 2013 Spanish film. The film follows Junior, a nine-year-old boy who has stubbornly curly hair, or “bad hair.” He wants to have it straightened for his yearbook picture, like a fashionable pop singer with long, ironed hair. Beneath it though is a tender and moving tale of a mother and son and a hefty slice of social realism.
That’s it from me. As always, any queries regarding this week’s releases, please drop me a tweet @timmy666.
In the meantime, have a great time at the cinema and see you next week.