WHAT’S ON IN CINE­MAS

Tara Brady and Don­ald Clarke’s picks of the cur­rent film re­leases

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - THE TAKE CINEMA -

BLACK PAN­THER ★★★

Di­rected by Ryan Co ogler. Star­ring Chad­wick Bose man, Michael B Jor­dan, Lu pit aN yong’ o,Danai G uri ra, Martin Free­man Marvel’s first out­ing with a black pro­tag­o­nist stars Bose­man as an African king who, from time to time, fights op­pres­sion as the lithe Black Pan­ther. Coogler has as much right to di­rect a so-so chil­dren’s film as the next chap, but a lit­tle more roughage would have been nice. It’s ef­fi­cient, fun and very well acted. But the ex­cess of CGI is suf­fo­cat­ing and the sur­face plot is im­pos­si­ble to care about. Just good enough. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 134 min DC

BLOCK­ERS ★★★★

Di­rected by Kay Can­non. Star­ring Kathryn New­ton, John Ce na, Les­lie

Mann Three girls plan to lose their vir­gin­ity. Their par­ents plan to stop them. The film sets it­self apart from most high-school shag come­dies by fo­cus­ing un­crit­i­cally on fe­male sex­u­al­ity even as it rel­ishes the dads’ dis­com­fort with that topic. “Why is sex even bad?” some­one says, ca­su­ally en­cap­su­lat­ing the dilemma at the heart of so much Amer­i­can com­edy. The rou­tines are hit and miss but when they work they prop­erly tear the roof off. 16 cert, gen re­lease, 102 min DC

COCO★★★★

Di­rected by LeeUnk rich and Adrian Molina. Star­ring An­thony Gon­za­lez, Gael García Be rn al, Ed­ward James

Ol­mos The lat­est from Pixar risks telling chil­dren (and all oth­ers) a tale of the Mex­i­can Day of the Dead. On pa­per, the mythol­ogy scans as com­pli­cated and dark, but in the ca­pa­ble hands of Os­car-win­ner Unkrich and Pixar vet­eran Molina,

Coco is ac­ces­si­ble for even the youngest. The an­i­ma­tion es­chews the tir­ing photo-re­al­ism of Cars 3 in favour of the trans­port­ing car­ni­va­lesque, re­plete with a stage show by Frieda Kahlo and candy-coloured Xoloitzcuintli. Wel­come back. PG cert, gen re­lease, 105 min TB

NEWRELEASE CUS­TODY/JUSQU’ÀLAGARDE ★★★★★

Di­rected by Xavier Le grand. Star­ring D en isMé no chet,Lé aD ruck er,

Thomas Gio­ria A young boy copes with week­end vis­its to an abu­sive fa­ther fol­low­ing his par­ents’ an­tag­o­nis­tic sep­a­ra­tion. The re­search is rig­or­ous. The per­for­mances are con­sis­tently strong with Gio­ria ex­celling as the cau­tious ter­ri­fied child. The re­sult ad­dresses the worst man­i­fes­ta­tions of toxic mas­culin­ity within the con­text of a hurtling drama that never al­lows at­ten­tion to wan­der. A stun­ning de­but from a direc­tor who just oozes po­ten­tial. 15A cert, lim re­lease, 94 min DC

NEWRELEASE DEATHWISH ★★

Di­rected by Eli Roth. Star­ring Bruce Willis, Vincent D’ On of rio, Elis­a­beth S hue, Dean Nor­ris, Kim­berly Eli se In Michael Win­ner’s 1974 orig­i­nal, Charles Bron­son was an ar­chi­tect who em­barks on a venge­ful ram­page af­ter New York no­good­niks kill his wife and rape his daugh­ter. In the new film, Bron­son’s stone-faced vig­i­lante is re­placed by Bruce Willis’s smug sur­geon and the ac­tion has shifted to Chicago, prompt­ing the Chicago

Reader to dis­miss the film as a “Trumpian fan­tasy”. That’s only hal­fright. While Death Wish of­ten dou­bles as a com­mer­cial for the US gun lobby, its un­even, head-scratch­ing tone re­calls Milo Yiannopou­los’s Twinks for Trump cam­paign. Is it trolling or just con­fused? 16 cert, gen re­lease, 107 min TB

NEWRELEASE A FIST­FUL OF DOL­LARS/ PER UN PUGNODIDOLLARI ★★★★★

Di­rected by Ser­gio Leone. Star­ring Clint East­wood, Mar­i­anne Koch, G ian

Maria Volontè In 1964, A Fist­ful of Dol­lars, a Span­ish-shot, English­dubbed, Ger­man-co-pro­duced, Mex­i­can-set re­make of the Akira Kuro­sawa’s 1961 samu­rai movie

Yo­jimbo, with an Ital­ian direc­tor at the helm, trum­peted the ar­rival of the spaghetti western. Ser­gio Leone would later claim that “East­wood, at that time, only had two ex­pres­sions: with hat and no hat.” That’s a lit­tle un­fair. The ac­tor may not have been tech­ni­cally gifted, but he had plenty of star qual­ity. His de­liv­ery of lines like “Get three coffins ready” is hard to beat. Club, IFI/Light House, Dublin, 100 min TB

GHOSTSTORIES ★★★★

Di­rected by AndyNym an and Jeremy Dy son. Star­ring AndyNym an, Martin Free­man, Alex Law th er, Ni­cholas

Burns A prickly night­watch­man (White­house) hears ter­ri­ble things while guard­ing a derelict build­ing once used as an asy­lum for fe­male pa­tients. A nervy, bul­lied young man (Lawther) is involved in a hit-and-run in­ci­dent with a de­monic beast while driv­ing deep in a for­est. A wealthy high-flier from the fi­nan­cial sec­tor (Martin Free­man, ooz­ing smug) is ter­rorised by a pol­ter­geist just as his wife is going into labour. This is a mod­ern Dead of Night port­man­teau from Andy Ny­man (the co-cre­ator of Dar­ren Brown’s stage shows) and The League of Gen­tle­men’s Jeremy Dyson. 16 cert, gen re­lease, 98 min TB

THE HUR­RI­CANE HEIST ★★

Di­rected by Rob Co­hen. Star­ring Toby K eb bell, Mag­gie Grace, Melissa

Bolona,BenCross With a nod to the com­par­a­tively mas­ter­ful high con­cepts of Snakes on a Plane and

Shark­nado, Hur­ri­cane Heist fea­tures a hur­ri­cane and a heist. As the film opens, two boys witness the death of their fa­ther in an Alabama cat­e­gory 5 storm. The old man dis­ap­pears just as the younger one fan­cies he sees a skull in the clouds. If only the rest of the film had got be­hind the skull mo­tif. In­stead we have to wait un­til the fi­nal scene – the storm in a race against trucks – for a dash of mit­i­gat­ing camp. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 103 min TB

ISLEOFDOGS★★★★★

Di­rected by Wes An­der­son. Voices of Bryan Cranston, Ed­ward Nor­ton, Bill Mur­ray, Jeff Gold bl um, Ken Watan­abe, Gr eta Ger wig, Frances Mc Dorm and, Har­veyKei­tel,S carl ett Jo hans son, Tilda S win ton, F Mur­ray

Abra­ham,YokoOno In a fu­tur­is­tic Ja­pan, a thug­gish, to­tal­i­tar­ian Mayor Kobayashi - the de­scen­dant of a long line of cat fanciers - uses an out­break of snout fever to jus­tify the ban­ish­ment of all ca­nines. The pup­pers and dog­gos of Me­gasaki City are ac­cord­ingly rounded up and dumped on Trash Is­land. Here, the mutts scrap in mar­vel­lous cot­ton­wood dust-ups and strug­gle to sur­vive on mag­goty morsels. Wes An­der­son’s sec­ond stop-mo­tion film (af­ter Fan­tas­tic Mr

Fox in 2009) doesn’t put a paw wrong. PG cert, gen re­lease, 101 min TB

JOUR­NEY­MAN ★★★

Di­rected by Paddy Con si di ne. Star­ring Paddy Con si dine, Jo die Whit­taker, Paul Pop pl ewell Ma tty Bur­ton (Con­si­dine), a boxer at the end of his ca­reer, takes on the brash young op­po­nent in a fi­nal ti­tle fight. This is go­ing­to­beal­ife-chang­ing­fight, prom­ises the trash-talk­ing new­comer. He’s cor­rect, but not in the way Matty thinks: A head in­jury leaves him en­tirely de­pen­dent on his wife (Whit­taker) – and en­tirely changed. Thought­ful, ten­der-hearted drama piv­ots around the ac­tor/ direc­tor’s cen­tral per­for­mance, but that turn is never al­lowed to over­shadow ter­rific work by Whit­taker and Welsh. 15A cert, lim re­lease, 92 min TB

LADYBIRD ★★★★★

Di­rected by Gr eta Ger wig. Star­ring Saoi rs eRo nan, Lau­rie Met calf, Tracy Let ts, Lu­cas H edges, Ti­mothée

Cha­la­met Glo­ri­ously funny, sur­pris­ingly mov­ing comic-drama about the strug­gles be­tween a feisty teenager (Ro­nan, de­light­ful) and her ha­rassed mum (Met­calf, nu­anced) in mil­len­nial Sacra­mento. For some­body so of­ten iden­ti­fied as the most fash­ion­able of cin­e­matic hip­sters, ac­tor-turned-direc­tor Ger­wig proves (not for the first time) to have an enor­mously gen­er­ous spirit. No­body is per­fect in the Lady

Bird uni­verse. But no­body is fully ma­lign either. Lau­rie gets her mo­ment of cathar­sis. Ro­nan is even­tu­ally al­lowed the chance to breath. Es­sen­tial. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 94 min DC

NEWRELEASE LOVE, SI­MON ★★★★

Di­rected by Greg B erl anti. Star­ring Nick Robin­son, Katherine Lang ford, Alexan­dra S hi pp, Jen­nifer Garner,

Josh Du ch am el, Tony Hale Si­mon Spier is a much-ad­mired high-school se­nior grow­ing up in a pic­ture-per­fect Amer­i­can sub­urb. His friends are bub­bly and gor­geous. His par­ents are lov­ing and un­der­stand­ing and played by Garner and Duchamel. His younger sis­ter is the op­po­site of bratty. It shouldn’t be a big deal for Si­mon to come out, and yet it is. None would ever mis­take this shiny, glossy movie for the queerer pic­tures in the Gregg Araki archive, but by going the full John Hughes, it’s a land­mark LGBTQ movie. Af­fect­ing, too. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 109 min TB

NEWRELEASE MAKINGTHEGRADE ★★★★

Di­rected by Ken War drop Pick­ing up where 2010 sleeper hit His & Hers left off, Ken Wardrop’s third fea­ture de­picts the re­la­tion­ships be­tween Ir­ish piano stu­dents and their teach­ers. The film meets and warmly greets some 51 par­tic­i­pants – hail­ing from all over Ire­land – as they pre­pare for their Royal Ir­ish Academy of Mu­sic ex­am­i­na­tions. Us­ing that body’s grade struc­ture, Mak­ing the Grade opens with five-year-old Harry Kee­gan climb­ing on to a stool for his first les­son, and closes with those tack­ling Rach­mani­noff for Grade Eight. Heart­warm­ing. G cert, gen re­lease, 87 min TB

MICHAELINSIDE ★★★★

Di­rected by Frank Berry. Star­ring DafhydF lynn, Moe Dun ford, L al or Rod dy, Rob­bie Walsh, Steve Blount,

HazelDoupe Flynn is ter­rific as a young Dubliner who gets cast on the slip­pery slope when he’s banged up for a mi­nor of­fense. Dun­ford is charis­matic as the bully on the yard. Berry’s fol­low up to I Used to Live Here is tech­ni­cally as­sured: en­velop­ing score by Daragh O’Toole; oily, claus­tro­pho­bic cam­er­a­work from Tom Comer­ford; an as­ton­ish­ing lead per­for­mance by Flynn. But it the gen­er­ous hu­man­ism un­der­ly­ing the doc­u­men­tary re­al­ism that really sets it apart. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 96 min DC

MID­NIGHT SUN★★

Di­rected by Scott S peer. Star­ring Bell aT horne, Pa­trick Sch­warzeneg­ger, Rob Rigg le

Largely ter­ri­ble teen sick pic about a girl who, con­fined in­doors with a rare dis­ease, falls for the lo­cal hunk and causes dad to worry. Thorne is grand as the lead, in the fash­ion of a Dis­ney Chan­nel grad­u­ate.

PHO­TO­GRAPH: WARNER BROS. PIC­TURES

Dwayne John­son in Ram­page.

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