This week starts strong, before slowly descending through mediocrity and into real scrape-the-barrel type stuff. It’s got Nick Cage in it, though, and two thirds of the cast of Ex Machina. Seriously though, just watch Brooklyn, maybe a repeat showing of Spectre, and go home. It’s kinder that way.
First up this week is Brooklyn. Based on Colm Tóibin’s novel of the same name, and written (the screenplay, that is) by Nick Hornby (High Fidelity, About a Boy), the film stars a bunch of awesome people: Saoirse Ronan (Atonement, The Lovely Bones, The Grand Budapest Hotel), Domnhall Gleeson (Ex Machina, Ex Machina, Ex Machina), Jim Broadbent and Julie Walters. Set in the 1950s, the film tells the story of a young Irish immigrant newly arrived in Brooklyn, where she struggles to find her way and dances with romance. It has received high praise, and looks really quite great. It opens on Friday.
Next, Burnt. Starring Bradley Cooper (The Hangover, Silver Linings Playbook) and Sienna Miller (you know her name, but can’t name a single film she’s been in), alongside a bunch of other (better) people like Daniel Brühl (Inglorious Basterds, Rush), Emma Thompson, and Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina, Ex Machina, Ex Machina), Burnt is about a chef who is disgraced because he does drugs, and goes to London where he tries to build up his reputation and earn three Michelin stars. The film has received reviews slightly worse than mixed, and looks far too bland to be about food (get it?). It opens Friday.
A documentary next, in the form of He Named Me Malala. The film is about the life of Malala Yousafzai, a young Pakistani girl who was shot in the head and left for dead by the Taliban for speaking out about girls’ education. After recovering (miraculously, I mean who lives after getting a bullet to the face?), Malala went on to campaign for female education across the globe, and won the Nobel Peace Prize. As awesome as her story is, however, the film that tries to tell it seems to have come short, receiving mixed reviews. In cinemas Friday.
Up next is a film far removed from a documentary about a girl campaigning for female rights – Kill Your Friends is a dark British comedy about the 90s music industry. It stars Nicholas Hoult as a man trying to capitalise on the popularity of Brit-pop, even if he has to get all murder-y to do it. It premiered at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, but has received scathing reviews, so maybe give it a miss. It opens on Friday.
Our next film this week is guaranteed to not only go down as the best film of the year, but to revolutionise the film industry. The Runner, starring our-Lord-and-saviour Nicolas Cage, sees the great man take on the role of a politician who gets wrapped up in the aftermath of the BP oil spill of 2010, who is also involved in a sex scandal. Oh Nick! When will you learn? Petrol and illicit sex just don’t go together. I could tell you about the reviews The Runner has received, but you don’t really care. All you needed to know was that Nick Cage was in it. You’ve probably already bought tickets to see the film when it’s released on Friday.
Wrapping things up this week is Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse. A shorter, and more accurate, title would have been Zombie Boobs. The film follows a bunch of recently pubescent boys during an outbreak of zombies, and naturally they take advantage of the situation by revelling instead in an outbreak of zombified bosom. It’s received pretty crappy reviews, but then again it’s got boobs in it. A difficult choice – Sophie ain’t got nothing on this. The film is released on Friday.