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BAD MOMS 2 (MA15+) Just as funny with twice the not-so-nice US, 104 min

This swiftly as­sem­bled se­quel works as a crowd­pleas­ing com­edy be­cause the hit-to-miss joke ra­tio is mod­er­ately high. This time, the foun­da­tion trio of Bad Moms — Amy (Mila Kunis), Kiki (Kristen Bell) and Carla (Kathryn Hahn) — must go head-to-head with their own bad moth­ers. As it is Christ­mas, Amy’s con­trol­f­reak mom Ruth (Chris­tine Baran­ski), Kiki’s clingy mom Sandy (Ch­eryl Hines) and Carla’s trailer-trash mom Isis (Su­san Saran­don) will be do­ing their best to ruin this hal­lowed hol­i­day for all.

BEATRIZ AT DIN­NER (M) For the main course, eat her words US, 82 min

Salma Hayek gives a ca­reer-best per­for­mance in the ti­tle role of a no-non­sense Mex­i­can masseuse in­vited to a din­ner party hosted by two rich clients. Beatriz is the only per­son seated at the ta­ble who isn’t worth mil­lions. But that isn’t about to stop her call­ing out the in­sen­si­tive and self-cen­tred ways of her fel­low guests. Such fiery, spir­ited stuff is par­tic­u­larly apt in an era where Don­ald Trump is US Pres­i­dent, and class di­vides are widen­ing all over the globe. [Ex­clu­sive to War­rina.]

CONOR MCGRE­GOR: NO­TO­RI­OUS (M) Pulls too many punches to truly kick off Ire­land, 90 min

This flashy sports doco gets you up close and im­per­sonal with mixed mar­tial arts su­per­star Conor McGre­gor. As can of­ten be the case when the sub­ject of a doco is also a pro­ducer, the film is very se­lec­tive. The con­tro­ver­sial Ir­ish fighter’s im­prob­a­ble rise from lowly plumber’s ap­pren­tice to high-fly­ing UFC champ is def­i­nitely a story worth telling, and when the film­mak­ers stick to the key facts and cru­cial fights, it makes for riv­et­ing view­ing. How­ever, an un­seemly pro­por­tion of run­ning time is given over to feed­ing McGre­gor’s mon­strous ego. The man’s in­ces­sant need to re­mind ev­ery­one of his abil­ity to crush op­po­nents and make the big bucks is tire­some be­yond be­lief. Hard-line UFC devo­tees will rel­ish the deep fo­cus on two land­mark stoushes: McGre­gor’s UFC Feath­er­weight ti­tle tri­umph in 2015, and his equally as­ton­ish­ing loss of the same belt less than a year later. (That heav­ily hyped re­cent Floyd May­weather bout is briefly dealt with in the clos­ing cred­its.)

THE FOR­EIGNER (MA15+) Re­venge a dish best served old US-China, 110 min

They killed Jackie Chan’s daugh­ter. Now they’re gonna have to pay. But first, old Jackie has to work out ex­actly who “they” are. Af­ter los­ing his only child in a Lon­don ter­ror­ist bomb­ing, Quan (Chan) has a hunch the IRA (and their man in Bri­tish Par­lia­ment, played by Pierce Bros­nan) might be in it up to their ears. So runs the seen-it-all-be­fore premise of The For­eigner, a no-frills ac­tion-thriller as old school as this kind of fare can be.

GEOSTORM (M) Cloudy, with a chance of meat­heads US, 109 min

A D-grade dis­as­ter movie where the world’s weather has turned sus­pi­ciously ma­li­cious. Our only hope rests with the Daniel Day-Lewis of dumb ac­tion flicks, Mr Gerard But­ler. Gezza must zoom up to the In­ter­na­tional Space Sta­tion to shake his fists and throw some span­ners at a ring of weather-con­trol­ling satel­lites that have gone rogue. But­ler and a gri­mac­ing, vein-pop­ping cast play it way too straight in a movie fun­da­men­tally telling all con­ven­tional logic to go and get bent.

HOME AGAIN (M) What­ever they say, Reese is the word US, 97 min

Ea­ger-to-please (and-even-more-ea­ger-not-to-of­fend) rom-com es­capism de­pict­ing a sit­u­a­tion in­cred­i­bly hard to be­lieve, yet very easy to sit back and take in. Reese Witherspoon stars as Alice, who af­ter a big night be­moan­ing her 40th birth­day, takes in three young as­pir­ing film­mak­ers as lodgers. Wouldn’t you just know it? The com­bined traits of this well-be­haved pack of guy-candy amount to ev­ery­thing her ex­hus­band (Michael Sheen) should have been. Costars Candice Ber­gen.

JIG­SAW (MA15+) The eighth cut is not the deep­est US, 92 min

A be­lated eighth in­stal­ment to the Saw fran­chise. You know the drill here. There’s a quar­tet of young mis­cre­ants be­ing held against their will. To es­cape, they might have to part com­pany with an or­gan, limb, or a sub­stan­tial per­cent­age of their life­span. Mean­while, a ca­bal of clue­less cops and mor­ti­cians won­der aloud if this is all the work of the no­to­ri­ous mas­ter­mind Jig­saw, seem­ingly still hard at work de­spite dy­ing at the end of Saw 3.

JUN­GLE (M) Des­per­ate climes de­mand des­per­ate mea­sures, Aus­tralia, 111 min

That high-pro­file Harry Pot­ter gig is the mon­key that needs to be prised off Daniel Rad­cliffe’s back if he is ever to achieve le­git­i­mate recognition as a grown-up ac­tor. While he still has some way to go, D-Rad is be­gin­ning to show a cer­tain some­thing in movies that sug­gests he will in­deed go the dis­tance. While Jun­gle isn’t the ideal show­case for any ac­tor — the script­ing is wispy and the pac­ing is in­or­di­nately slack — Rad­cliffe gives ev­ery­thing a red hot go from start to fin­ish. He plays Yossi Ghins­berg, a naive young Is­raeli ad­ven­turer who finds him­self help­lessly stranded deep in the rain­forests of Bo­livia in 1981. De­prived of any use­ful re­sources, Ghins­berg grad­u­ally finds him­self mak­ing a se­ries of sur­vival­ist choices that would have all­ter­rain tough guys like Bear Grylls chang­ing un­der­wear re­peat­edly. The man-ver­sus-na­ture stuff rarely raises pulses, but it is con­vinc­ing due to Rad­cliffe’s un­shake­able de­ter­mi­na­tion to make it so. A true (ish) story, if that floats your boat. Di­rected by Greg McLean ( Wolf Creek).

THOR: RAG­NAROK (M) Ham­mer comes down, hu­mour goes up US, 129 min

The third big-screen solo out­ing for Thor sees the big burly bearded bloke in his best form yet. While the movie sup­plies the kind of sprawl­ing ac­tion spec­ta­cle Marvel is renowned for, it is also a sly, dry com­edy packed with dead­pan punch­lines and ab­surd sight gags. The good­na­tured goofi­ness to the fore is def­i­nitely the hand­i­work of New Zealand film­maker Taika Waititi, fresh off his 2016 global sleeper hit Hunt for the Wilder peo­ple. When Waititi and an openly en­thu­si­as­tic cast — led by Aus­tralian duo Chris Hemsworth as Thor, and Os­car-win­ner Cate Blanchett as his evil older sister Hela — get the laughs go­ing on a roll, the movie’s charm is ir­re­sistible. Co-stars Tom Hid­dle­ston, Tessa Thomp­son, Mark Ruf­falo.

THREE SUM­MERS (M) Per­fectly unseasonable Aus­tralia, 102 min

A life­less Aus­tralian com­edy from go to whoa to no, lethar­gi­cally col­lect­ing all the sketchy car­i­ca­tures, re­dun­dant stereo­types and crass cliches writer-di­rec­tor Ben El­ton can think of. Af­ter El­ton ap­plies a heart-hard­en­ing grasp of mod­ern romance, then makes sev­eral lifeshort­en­ing lunges at lev­ity, what re­mains is just a dump­ster fire with di­a­logue. The plot stretches a mul­ti­tude of thin sto­ry­lines across three suc­ces­sive stag­ings of an an­nual folk mu­sic fes­ti­val. Char­ac­ters who have ini­tially got it wrong about how to be a good par­ent, a good spouse, a good lover, a good kid or a good mul­ti­cul­tural cit­i­zen will even­tu­ally come to their senses and get it right. But not be­fore a viewer’s pa­tience — or good­will to­wards an ap­peal­ing home­grown cast which in­cludes Michael Ca­ton, Deb­o­rah Mail­man and Magda Szuban­ski — has been va­por­ised. A love story be­tween two unlov­able types merely pro­longs the in­ert, inane agony of it all.

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