Manawatu Standard

Blockbuste­rs back at last

From 007’s return to Dwayne Johnson’s theme park ride-inspired action-comedy and a pair of musicals, has the latest dates to put in your diary.

- James Croot

This week’s arrival of big-budgeted martial arts movie Mortal Kombat marks yet another step in the return of blockbuste­rs to a cinema near you. Moved around multiple times as a result of the ongoing global pandemic, this reboot heralds the start of the traditiona­l northern summer season of Hollywood heavy-hitters.

Stuff has come up with this handy guide to some of the most hotly anticipate­d titles scheduled to hit our multiplexe­s before 2021 is done.

Spiral: From the Book of Saw (May 13)

An exciting, star-studded reboot for the dormant horror franchise which had been in decline for years, this one has essentiall­y been on ice for 12 months. Samuel L Jackson and Chris Rock play father and son policemen who find themselves caught up in a grisly investigat­ion into murders that are eerily reminiscen­t of the city’s gruesome past.

A Quiet Place Part II (May 27)

Rushed into production after the runaway, surprise success of the spooky

2018 original, fans have been kept in suspense for more than 14 months waiting to see how Emily Blunt and family try to continue to stay silent – and alive – in the face of such overwhelmi­ng odds. Peaky Blinders’ Cillian Murphy joins in the action this time around.

Cruella (May 27)

Delayed by six months, after filming was already suspended because star Emma Stone injured her shoulder, this 101 Dalmatians’ villain’s origin story is set to debut on Disney+ just a day after hitting cinemas. The impressive cast also includes Emma Thompson and Mark Strong.

(June 17)

Supposed to rev into cinemas in May last year, while little is known about the plot of the latest instalment of this action franchise, this time it will be without the services of either Dwayne Johnson or Jason Statham. However, in their place comes John Cena, Cardi B and New Zealand’s own Vinnie Bennett.

In the Heights (June 24)

Lin-manuel Miranda fans had to content themselves with a live-recording of Hamilton last year, after this musical adaptation was delayed for 12 months. It’s the story of a bodega owner who has mixed feelings about closing his store and retiring to the Dominican Republic after inheriting his grandmothe­r’s fortune.

Blackwidow (July 8)

First scheduled to screen on April 30 last year, rather than following on from Avengers: Endgame, events in Australian director Cate Shortland’s Marvel movie actually take place in the aftermath of 2016’s Captain America: Civil War. Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff finds herself alone and forced to confront her past.

Space Jam: A New Legacy (July 15)

Although an original release date was never officially announced for this sequel to the much loved 1996 animated-live-action hybrid, this has

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 ??  ?? From top, Chris Rock in Spiral, Scarlett Johansson in Black Widow and Jodie Comer and Ryan Reynolds in Free Guy.
From top, Chris Rock in Spiral, Scarlett Johansson in Black Widow and Jodie Comer and Ryan Reynolds in Free Guy.

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