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

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - THETAKE CINEMA -


Direct­ed­bySamLevin­son.Star­ring OdessaYoung,Suk­iWater­house, Har­iNef,Abra,Bil­lSkårs­gard,Bella Thorne,JoelMcHale

It’s not al­ways subtle, but Levin­son’s satire con­cern­ing a town where ev­ery sec­ond cit­i­zen has his browser his­tory hacked has in­de­cent zip and im­pres­sive edge. The mes­sages are con­veyed by a dizzy­ing mass of vi­o­lent, sex­ual im­ages – some leer­ing in the style of Larry Clarke – that throb to an ex­cel­lent score by Ian Hultquist. Bravura shots abound. It falls apart a lit­tle in an an­ar­chic last act, but the last line is an ab­so­lute killer. 18 cert, lim re­lease, 108 min


DC Direct­ed­byBryanSinger.Star­ring RamiMalek,LucyBoyn­ton,Gwilym Lee,BenHardy,JosephMazzello,

Squab­bling is a defin­ing char­ac­ter­is­tic of which blazes through Fred­die Mer­cury’s life in a se­ries of agree­ably cheesy vi­gnettes: Fred­die’s Parsi ori­gins and dis­ap­prov­ing dad, his life­long love for Mary Austin (Boyn­ton), the tours, the par­ties, the lone­li­ness be­tween, the hang­ers-on, and var­i­ous erup­tions of cre­ative dif­fer­ences with the band. The fi­nal scene, a flaw­less repli­ca­tion of Queen’s en­tire 20-minute set from Live Aid, is ab­surdly im­pres­sive, with Malek in­ter­pret­ing Mer­cury as a ge­o­mag­netic storm. A kind of magic. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 134 min TB

Bohemian Rhap­sody,


Direct­ed­byDó­nalÓCéil­leachair. Star­ringDan­nySheehy,Liam Holden,Bren­danBe­g­ley,Bre­andán Mo­ri­arty,GlenHansard It takes some class of deter­mi­na­tion to row all the way from Ire­land to San­ti­ago de Com­postela in North­ern Spain. It takes more to do so in a tra­di­tional naomhóg. Yet four men – poet Sheehy, artist Holden, mu­si­cian Be­g­ley and stone­ma­son Mo­ri­arty – set out to do just that in three gru­elling yearly stages, begin­ning in 2014. Glen Hansard joined them later. Ó Céil­leachair’s film records the jour­ney with care and grace. You’ll feel up­lifted and a lit­tle ex­hausted by the close. PG cert, lim re­lease Dublin, 97 min


Direct­ed­byPawelPaw­likowski. Star­ringJoan­naKulig,To­maszKot, Bo­rysSzyc

Love is not enough in this sor­row­ful, swoon­ing Soviet-era drama con­cern­ing pi­anist Wik­tor (Kot) and the blonde, cheru­bic singer-dancer Zula (the mes­meris­ing Kulig) who heads his folk en­sem­ble. When the troupe reaches East Ber­lin, the pair have a clear chance to de­fect but it soon be­comes clear that only one of them has any de­sire to cross the Iron Cur­tain. Thus be­gins a decade of bor­der-cross­ing, part­ings and re­unions. Al­most in­de­cently mov­ing and eas­ily one of the films of the year. 15A cert, IFI, Dublin, 85 min TB


Direct­ed­byStevenCapleJr.Star­ring MichaelBJor­dan,Sylvester Stal­lone,Tes­saThomp­son,Dolph Lund­gren,Flo­ri­anMun­teanu, Phyli­ci­aRashad,Brigit­teNielsen

The fol­low-up to Ryan Coogler’s ex­cel­lent

also stands as a be­lated se­quel to Ivan Drago (Lund­gren) is back and his son is chal­leng­ing for the ti­tle. Will Don­nie Creed (Jor­dan) fight the man who killed his dad? Will Rocky (Stal­lone, OB­VI­OUSLY) be in his cor­ner? That would be telling. We can re­veal that is al­most as sleek as its pre­de­ces­sor and cer­tainly as well acted. If you don’t leave punch­ing the air, con­sider throw­ing in the towel. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 130 min DC

Creed Rocky IV. Creed II


Direct­ed­bySe­bastiánLe­lio.Star­ring RachelWeisz.RachelMcA­dams, Alessan­droNivola Fan­tas­tic Woman

The di­rec­tor of tack­les Naomi Al­der­man’s novel con­cern­ing a pas­sion­ate les­bian re­la­tion­ship within Lon­don’s ortho­dox Jewish com­mu­nity. From the hand­somely framed sen­su­al­ity of its sex scenes to the per­fectly formed swells of Matthew Her­bert, this care­fully crafted cham­ber piece may prove too taste­ful for more ram­bunc­tious sen­si­bil­i­ties. Veteran cin­e­matog­ra­pher Danny Co­hen makes great, nat­u­ral­is­tic use of Lon­don’s bright grey skies and es­ca­la­tors. And even un­der mousy wigs and min­i­mal makeup, Weisz and McA­dams shine like the movie stars they are. 15A cert, lim re­lease, 114mins TB


Direct­ed­byDavidYates.Star­ring Ed­dieRed­mayne,JudeLaw, Kather­ineWater­ston,DanFogler, ZoeKravitz,AlisonSu­dol,Johnny Depp,EzraMiller,Cal­lumTurner, Clau­di­aKim Fan­tas­tic Beasts and Where to Find Them was a bit of a marvel. Yates’ pic­ture fleshed out the Harry Pot­ter uni­verse with­out dis­ap­pear­ing up its own Quid­ditch. What has gone wrong? Red­mayne is back as the mag­i­cal zo­ol­o­gist Newt Sca­man­der in a con­fus­ing, over­pop­u­lated film that plays like the work of a par­tic­u­larly anal Pot­ter Red­dit. The march of non-per­son­al­i­ties serves to bury many of the char­ac­ters we liked so much from the first film. Oh, well. The cos­tumes, at least, are lovely. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 134 min


Direct­ed­byFedeÁl­varez.Star­ring ClaireFoy,Sver­rirGud­na­son,Lakeith Stan­field,Sylvi­aHoeks,Stephen Mer­chant

Lis­beth Sa­lan­dar is back in an adap­tion – keep up here – of the se­quel to Steig Lars­son’s trilogy penned, af­ter that au­thor’s

Mil­len­nium death, by David Lager­crantz. The film re­draws Lis­beth as James Bond, or pos­si­bly the Equaliser, as she gets drawn into a con­vo­luted plot to cap­ture all the nu­clear launch codes in the world. Even the ti­tles fea­ture naked danc­ing lady sil­hou­ettes. Ál­varez is a fine ac­tion di­rec­tor, and his ex­cit­ing set- pieces pro­vide de­cent com­pen­sa­tion for Lis­beth’s now om­nipo­tent skills. But the plot is a shaggy, loose-ended mess. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 115 min


Direct­ed­byS­cot­tMosierandYar­row Cheney.Voic­e­sofBene­dic­tCum­ber­batch,RashidaJones,Angela Lans­bury,Phar­rel­lWil­liams

The lat­est adap­ta­tion of the 1957 Dr Seuss book is jeop­ar­dised by a dis­tinct lack of bah hum­bug­ging. The Grinch, as voiced by Cum­ber­batch, dotes on his loyal dog, Max.and­spoil­sFred,the­fa­trein­deer he en­lists into his Christ­mas-steal­ing scheme. We’re told the Grinch’s heart is two sizes too small, but there’s noth­ing in his in­ter­ac­tions with the Whos of Whoville to sup­port this ab­nor­mal car­dio­vas­cu­lar the­ory. As all-ages Christ­mas porn goes, it’s a huge im­prove­ment on

and the unlovely G cert, gen re­lease,

How the Grinch Stole Christ­mas! and the Four Realms Grinch.

Jim Car­rey 86 min TB TB

The Nutcracker



Reid was the stub­born Kil­dare man who, in the mid­dle part of this decade, re­fused to sell a hunk of land, ear­marked for “strate­gic in­dus­trial de­vel­op­ment”, to a dum­founded In­dus­trial De­vel­op­ment Author­ity. Ward’s hugely im­pres­sive, of­ten beau­ti­ful doc­u­men­tary (bor­der­ing on docu-drama) uses recre­ations, in­ter­views and a wan­der­ing cam­era to cre­ate a por­trait of a gen­uine orig­i­nal: ec­cen­tric, de­ter­mined, in­fu­ri­at­ing. Two worlds ex­ist in par­al­lel: the mod­ern and the an­cient. Nei­ther has, at time of re­lease, en­croached sig­nif­i­cantly on the other. 12A cert, QFT, Belfast

(Tues/Wed/Thur), 80 min


Direct­ed­byPanosCos­matos. Star­ringNi­co­lasCage,An­drea Rise­bor­ough,Li­nusRoache

Os­ten­si­bly, this is a movie in which log­ger Red (Cage) ex­acts a ter­ri­ble re­venge against a Man­son Fam­ily-like re­li­gious cult and their can­ni­bal biker co­horts from hell (ac­tual hell) – we don’t wish to spoil these ad­ver­saries, but wow! – af­ter they have ab­ducted his girl­friend Mandy (Rise­bor­ough). Any sum­mary ig­nores the in­cred­i­ble tex­tures. Ched­dar Gob­lin Mac­a­roni, any­one? It’s fas­ci­nat­ing watch­ing Cage snake his way in and around the 1980s largesse of the project. As Roache’s creepy man-child leader has it: “You’re a spe­cial one, Mandy.” Club, Light House, Dublin (Tues only), 121 min TB


Direct­ed­byDeb­bieIsitt.Star­ring Si­monLip­kin,DanielBoys,Craig RevelHor­wood,BradleyWalsh, Meer­aSyal,He­lenGe­orge,Ruth Jones,Celi­aIm­rie,HughDen­nis, An­naChan­cel­lor Coven­try, as the fic­tional mayor of that place re­minds us in Na­tiv­ity Rocks!, has sur­vived bomb­ing and ra­tioning and poverty. But can it with­stand a fourth film in the Na­tiv­ity se­quence? Kind of. The plot con­cerns the stag­ing of a rock opera to help the city win most Christ­massy spot in the land. Char­ac­ters come and go ran­domly.There’s a lot of chat­ter about fam­ily and Christ­mas and the mag­nif­i­cent city of Coven­try – did we men­tion Coven­try al­ready? Marginally more tol­er­a­ble than the last one. G cert, gen re­lease, 100min


Direct­ed­byPhilJohn­ston,Rich Moore.Voic­e­sofJohnCReilly,Sarah Sil­ver­man,GalGadot,Tara­jiP Hen­son,Jack­McBrayer,JaneLynch, AlanTudyk,Al­fredMolina

Ralph (Reilly), for­mer brute from a plat­form game and Vanel­lope von

Fix-It Felix Jr,


Vanel­lope ( Sarah Sil­ver­man) hangs out with the Dis­ney princesses in Ralph Breaks the In­ter­net.

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