Star Carey’s on shining
Far from the Madding Crowd
(12) ●●●● ●
Thomas Vinterberg’s polished adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s classic novel features another sharp turn from Carey Mulligan.
Her charming heiress copes well as she is pulled from pillar to post by three would-be-lovers.
Class wars abound and while it falls short of the 1967 version, it’s engaging and visually scrumptious throughout.
This claustrophobic submarine-set thriller suffers in comparison to last year’s similarly-themed Black Sea.
Danny Huston and Matthew Goode head up a cast that are never anything less than watchable.
But they’re saddled with unlikeable characters and a severe lack of truly meaty, taut storylines to chew on.
Monsters: Dark Continent (15)
Set 10 years after the events of the original, Dark Continent moves on from an inventive flipping of Americans trying to cross the Mexican border to a bombastic “war on terror”.
Don’t go in expecting full-on man versus beast shoot-outs, though; if you thought the titular creatures were secondary in the first film, prepare yourself for even worse here.
This is a war movie, pure and simple, playing out like Battle LA with a little more thought behind the story.
Director Tom Green – making his cinematic bow – does show promise with some inventive visuals.
But it’s not enough to save this disappointing, frustrating follow-up that feels like false advertising at its worst.