This Week’s Movie Menu (27 November – 3 December 2023)

Dust off your decorations, untangle the lights, and let Michael Bublé and Mariah Carey out of their hibernating cave: the countdown to Christmas is officially on! And the festive mood extends to this week’s crop of new film releases, which include a chilly psychological thriller, a horror-comedy about deadly elves, an Eddie Murphy fantasy-comedy, the return of cinema’s favourite human-sized elf, and more…

Movie of the Week

 

Eileen (2023, dir. William Oldroyd)

CAST: Thomasin McKenzie, Anne Hathaway, Shea Whigham, Marin Ireland, Owen Teague, Jefferson White, Tonye Patano, Siobhan Fallon Hogan

CREW: William Oldroyd (director, producer), Luke Goebel and Ottessa Moshfegh (writers, producers), Stefanie Azpiazu, Anthony Bregman, Peter Cron and Bavand Karim (producers), Richard Reed Parry (composer), Ari Wegner (cinematographer), Nick Emerson (editor)

PLOT: In 1960s Boston, a young woman named Eileen (McKenzie) works as a secretary at a juvenile detention centre, where she meets the facility’s new psychiatrist Rebecca (Hathaway). Taken by Rebecca’s charm and beauty, Eileen finds herself more and more drawn to her mysterious new co-worker, until she becomes involved in something much more dangerous…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • This stylish and twisty new psychological thriller puts an intriguing spin on the classic film noir template
  • Thomasin McKenzie shines as the titular protagonist, as does Anne Hathaway who exhumes charisma and twisted pleasure in a role unlike anything the Oscar-winner has yet played
  • It is the first feature for director William Oldroyd in seven years, after making a sizeable splash with Florence Pugh’s breakout movie Lady Macbeth
  • Ari Wegner’s moody cinematography captures the bleak, cold 60s Massachusetts atmosphere in which this story is set
  • With shocking twists that have already caught festival audiences off guard, it looks set to be a new wintery chiller classic

Eileen is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

What’s Showing in Cinemas This Week?

 

There’s Something in the Barn (2023, dir. Magnus Martens)

CAST: Martin Starr, Amrita Acharia, Townes Bunner, Alexander Karlsen El Younoussi, Calle Hellevang-Larsen, Jeppe Beck Laursen, Paul Monaghan, Kiran Shah, Henriette Steenstrup, Zoe Winter-Hansen

CREW: Magnus Martens (director), Aleksander Kirkwood Brown and Josh Epstein (writers), Kjetil Omberg and Jørgen Storm Rosenberg (producers), Lasse Enersen (composer), Mika Orasmaa (cinematographer), Kalle Doniselli Gulbrandsen (editor)

PLOT: After inheriting his uncle’s estate in Norway, Bill (Starr) and his family relocate to the home so that they can convert it into a profitable bed-and-breakfast. Soon, Bill’s son Lucas (Bunner) discovers an ancient elf living in the estate’s barn, and learns that there are strict rules to follow in order to keep it happy – but when Bill ignores the rules and opts to throw a Christmas party at the house, the elf sets out on a bloody rampage…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • In this fun festive horror-comedy, Norwegian folklore conflicts with brash American mannerisms in the most brutal of fashion
  • The wrath of mystical elves, who are far from the cuddly and jolly creatures one often associates with them at Christmastime, evokes memories of 80s classics like Gremlins and Critters
  • The film is directed by Magnus Martens, who previously made a splash (albeit for the wrong reasons) with Die Hard clone SAS: Red Notice
  • Just because it’s set at the most festive time of year doesn’t mean that there aren’t any unseasonably bloody deaths to look forward to
  • It should put audiences in a very different kind of Christmas mood, with the big day just over a month away!

There’s Something in the Barn is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Femme (2023, dirs. Sam H. Freeman and Ng Choon Ping)

CAST: Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, George MacKay, Aaron Heffernan, John McCrea, Asha Reid, Peter Clements, Antonia Clarke, Moe Bar-El

CREW: Sam H. Freeman and Ng Choon Ping (directors, writers), Myles Payne and Sam Ritzenberg (producers), Adam Janota Bzowski (composer), James Rhodes (cinematographer), Selina Macarthur (editor)

PLOT: Jules (Stewart-Jarrett), a London drag artist, is violently attacked by homophobic thugs, led by menacing low-life Preston (MacKay). Some time later, Jules encounters Preston in a gay sauna, and decides to enact a brutal ritual of revenge…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • The classic revenge movie template is given a fresh LGBTQ+ update in this captivating thriller
  • Filmmakers Sam H. Freeman and Ng Choon Ping expand upon their BAFTA-nominated short of the same name
  • A rousing lead performance by Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, and a menacing supporting turn by a tattooed George MacKay, anchors the tense drama
  • It has received 11 nominations for the British Independent Film Awards (due to be held this coming Sunday), including Best British Independent Film and Best Joint Lead Performance for Stewart-Jarrett and McKay
  • With unpredictable turns and a moody atmosphere, this is a revenge thriller that you won’t want to skip out on

Femme is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Fallen Leaves (2023, dir. Aki Kaurismäki)

CAST: Alma Pöysti, Jussi Vatanen, Janne Hyytiäinen, Nuppu Koivu, Matti Onnismaa, Simon Al-Bazoon, Martti Suosalo, Alma-Koira, Sakari Kuosmanen, Maria Heiskanen, Alina Tomnikov, Maustetytöt

CREW: Aki Kaurismäki (director, writer, producer), Misha Jaari and Mark Lwoff (producers), Timo Salminen (cinematographer), Samu Heikkilä (editor)

PLOT: In Finland, Ansa (Pöysti) works a menial supermarket job and lives alone, while Holappa (Vatanen) is a construction worker struggling with alcoholism. Both lonely souls soon encounter one another, and against all odds set out to form a connection with one another…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • The latest film from Finnish auteur Aki Kaurismäki is a deadpan tragicomic spin on the classic rom-com formula
  • Kaurismäki brings an old-fashioned sensibility to his storytelling, as well as a huge dollop of his trademark dry humour
  • Lead actors Alma Pöysti and Jussi Vatanen bring an uncertain romantic chemistry that’s unlike a lot of other rom-coms out there
  • At Cannes, the film became an easy audience favourite and came away with the festival’s Jury Prize, while it has also been selected as Finland’s entry for this year’s International Feature Film Oscar
  • It is an unusual viewing experience that could not be more Finnish if it tried!

Fallen Leaves is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023 (and will be available to stream exclusively on MUBI soon)

 

Queendom (2023, dir. Agniia Galdanova)

CAST: Gena Marvin

CREW: Agniia Galdanova (director, producer), Igor Myakotin (producer), Toke Brorson Odin and Damien Vandesande (composers), Ruslan Fedotov (cinematographer), Vlad Fishez (editor)

PLOT: Gena is a young queer artist living in a small Russian town, who wears provocative homemade outfits whilst protesting the government on the streets of Moscow. However, her public displays soon put her life in danger from the authoritative administration…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • Meet the brave LGBTQ+ activist protesting Putin’s Russia in this gripping and intense documentary
  • We see how lead figure Gena Marvin provokes Russian society with her thought-provoking artwork, shocking live performances, and an abundance of revealing costumes
  • The film highlights the struggles and persecutions of LGBTQ+ community members living in a country where homosexuality is sadly still frowned upon
  • As Russia’s war in Ukraine rages on, here’s a handy reminder of just how compressed Russian society still is under Putin’s rule
  • Daring and provocative, this is a vital piece of queer documentary cinema that puts an unlikely hero on the map

Queendom is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023 (and will be available to rent/buy on digital platforms)

 

Tótem (2023, dir. Lila Avilés)

CAST: Naíma Sentíes, Monserrat Marañon, Marisol Gasé, Saori Gurza, Teresita Sánchez, Mateo García Elizondo, Juan Francisco Maldonado, Iazua Larios, Alberto Amador

CREW: Lila Avilés (director, writer, producer), Tatiana Graullera and Louise Riousse (producers), Thomas Becka (composer), Diego Tenorio (cinematographer), Omar Guzmán (editor)

PLOT: Sol (Sentíes), a seven-year-old girl, spends the day helping her family organise a surprise birthday party for Sol’s father, Tonatiuh (Mateo García Elizondo). However, as the daylight fades, the family’s dynamics begin to shift, and Sol realises that her world will no longer be the same…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • This heartfelt family drama explores a shifting hierarchy from the perspective of a child too young to fully understand it all
  • It is the second feature by Mexican filmmaker Lila Avilés, who gained international attention for her debut drama The Chambermaid
  • Like Avilés’s previous film, Tótem has been selected to represent Mexico for this year’s International Feature Film Oscar
  • Following its debut at the Berlin Film Festival earlier this year, it was awarded a Prize of the Ecumenical Jury, an independent award operating during the festival
  • Along with 20,000 Species of Bees, this is another fine Spanish-language coming-of-age drama for audiences of most ages to enjoy

Tótem is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Battle Over Britain (2023, dir. Callum Burn)

CAST: Arnold Voysey, Vin Hawke, Hannah Harris, Callum Burn, David Dobson, Tom Gordon, Sam Parsons, Steven Hooper, Micky David, Archie Blankley, Chris Clynes, Jamie Ellis, Conor Ó’Cuinn

CREW: Callum Burn (director, writer, producer, editor), Andrew Burn (writer, producer), Ben Thatcher (composer), Sam Parsons (cinematographer)

PLOT: During the height of the Battle of Britain, a group of young pilots take to the skies of southern England and engage in deadly but exhausting dog fights against the enemy. However, when one of their ranks ends up missing, the pilots engage in a rescue mission that sees them making the ultimate sacrifice for their country…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • The heroic pilots of the Second World War are celebrated in this rousing wartime action-drama
  • It is the latest war film from director Callum Burn, who also made Lancaster Skies and Spitfire Over Berlin with his co-writer brother Andrew
  • A small British squadron forms the focus of Burns’s new film, with their camaraderie and devotion to their country fuelling the drama
  • There is plenty of action up in the skies, as our British heroes take on the deadly jets piloted by those nasty Nazis
  • Anyone who is nostalgic for patriotic war thrillers will find themselves cheering for their country at several points

Battle Over Britain is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Teddy’s Christmas (2022, dir. Andrea Eckerbom)

CAST: Zachary Levi, Marte Klerck-Nilssen, Jan Gunnar Røise, Nader Khademi, Mariann Hole, Vegard Strand Eide, Gunn Tove Grønsberg, Medina Iqbal, Lene Kongsvik Johansen, Marianne Krogness, Scott Maurstad, Kai Remlov, Morten Rudå, Ingrid Lykkeslet Strømskag

CREW: Andrea Eckerbom (director), Lars Gudmestad and Harald Rosenløw-Eeg (writers), Thea Benedikte Kevin Karlsen (producer), Stein Johan Grieg Halvorsen and Eyvind Andreas Skeie (composers), Kjell Vassdal (cinematographer), Elise Solberg (editor)

PLOT: During a trip to her town’s Christmas market, young Mariann (Klerck-Nilssen) comes across a carnival game booth with a teddy bear that appears to be alive. She desperately tries to win the stuffed toy, named Teddy (Levi), but when he is won by someone else, Teddy and his new hedgehog friend Bolla (Johansen) set out to reconnect with Mariann, learning about the importance of family and friendship along the way…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • Norway’s hit festive family adventure is exported to Western audiences who may be looking for a wholesome new Christmas classic
  • For this international version, Shazam! star Zachary Levi voices the adorable teddy bear that has magically come to life
  • The film mixes live-action with CGI animation to bring the magical adventure to the forefront of children’s imaginations
  • It is based on a song by legendary Norwegian writer and musician Alf Prøysen, and is part of a cinematic trilogy inspired by some of Prøysen’s other Christmas-themed works
  • Families will find this a pleasant and endearing way to raise the Christmas spirit, especially with the countdown to the big day now officially on!

Teddy’s Christmas is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Yoshiki: Under the Sky (2023, dirs. Mark Ritchie and Yoshiki)

CAST: Yoshiki, The Chainsmokers, St. Vincent, Sarah Brightman, Scorpions, Hyde, Sugizo, SixTones, Jane Zhang, Lindsey Stirling, Nicole Scherzinger

CREW: Mark Ritchie (director, producer), Yoshiki (director, composer), Sidney Ganis, Doug Kluthe and Aaron Latham-James (producers), Rachel Bickert, Michael Marius Pessah and Kenneth Wales (cinematographers), Spencer Lee (editor)

PLOT: During the pandemic, world-renowned Japanese musician Yoshiki organises a special global concert for fellow musicians across the world to connect virtually with their fans…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • The power of music is felt in this moving music documentary fronted by Japanese rock star Yoshiki
  • It captures his efforts in 2020 to unite international artists, who couldn’t tour or travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic, for a one-off concert to raise people’s spirits
  • Some of the recognisable artists involved with the project include The Chainsmokers, St. Vincent, and Nicole Scherzinger
  • We also see the emotional toll that the pandemic had on everyone involved, including Yoshiki whose interactions with the husband of a terminally-ill fan are deeply heart-breaking
  • The concert itself is a life-affirming reminder that, even in the middle of a global pandemic, music has the power to unite us all

Yoshiki: Under the Sky is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé (2023, dirs. Beyoncé and James B. Merryman)

CAST: Beyoncé, Blue Ivy Carter

CREW: Beyoncé and James B. Merryman (directors), TBA (producer), Dax Blinn (cinematographer), TBA (editor)

PLOT: Worldwide music superstar Beyoncé performs the final night of her Renaissance World Tour at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, and takes viewers on her creative journey toward making her latest studio album…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • In the wake of Taylor Swift shaking up the exhibition industry with her own record-breaking concert film, Beyoncé brings her now-iconic Renaissance World Tour to screens everywhere
  • Similar to Swift, the pop superstar is distributing the film exclusively through cinema chains, in a deal that will see her earn 50% of all box office profits (which, given the high number of early ticket sales, will probably be quite a lot!)
  • The film is comprised of recorded footage from her final tour performance, and intimate personal recordings during her development of the Renaissance album
  • Look out for special appearances by other members of Beyoncé’s friends and family, including her show-stealing daughter Blue Ivy Carter!
  • Hell, do you really need any more reasons? It’s friggin’ Beyoncé!

Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

What’s Showing At Home This Week?

 

Candy Cane Lane (2023, dir. Reginald Hudlin)

CAST: Eddie Murphy, Tracee Ellis Ross, Robin Thede, Nick Offerman, Jillian Bell, Chris Redd, Ken Marino, D.C. Young Fly, Anjelah Johnson-Reyes, Genneya Walton, Madison Thomas, Thaddeus J. Mixson, Haiden Pino, Danielle Pinnock

CREW: Reginald Hudlin (director), Kelly Younger (writer), Brian Grazer, Charisse M. Hewitt, Karen Lunder and Eddie Murphy (producers), Marcus Miller (composer), Newton Thomas Sigel (cinematographer), Kenny G. Krauss and Jim May (editors)

PLOT: Chris Carver (Murphy) is a family man who is determined to win his neighbourhood’s annual Christmas home decoration contest. However, when he inadvertently makes a deal with a mischievous elf named Pepper (Bell) to increase his chances of winning, a magic spell is cast that brings the neighbourhood’s decorations to life. Now, Chris and his family must set out to break the spell before Christmas is ruined for everyone…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • Eddie Murphy rings in the holidays with this fun-filled festive adventure that everyone can enjoy
  • It is part of star and producer Murphy’s exclusive first-look deal with Amazon, which includes at least three films for the comedy legend to make with the streamer
  • Murphy’s former Boomerang director Reginald Hudlin is signed on to direct, while the likes of Tracee Ellis Ross and Jillian Bell play some memorable supporting parts alongside him
  • A number of eye-popping effects are used to bring the multiple decorations to life, with some creative uses of the classic 12 Days of Christmas also popping up every now and then
  • A high-concept Christmas fantasy that we surprisingly don’t see much of nowadays, this could be a contender for the year’s most memorable festive feature

Candy Cane Lane is streaming exclusively on Prime Video from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Genie (2023, dir. Sam Boyd)

CAST: Melissa McCarthy, Paapa Essiedu, Denée Benton, Marc Maron, Jordyn McIntosh, Luis Guzmán, Alan Cumming, Tate Ellington, LaChanze

CREW: Sam Boyd (director), Richard Curtis (writer), Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner and Riva Marker (producers), John Guleserian (cinematographer), Heather Persons (editor)

PLOT: Bernard Bottle (Essiedu) is facing enormous difficulties, from the trial separation from his wife Julie (Benton) to his tyrannical boss (Cumming) sacking him days before Christmas, when he finds a mysterious antique jewellery box in his house. Inside happens to be a magical genie named Flora (McCarthy) who has the power to grant Bernard an unlimited number of wishes. As he makes steps to better his life through Flora’s magic, he soon begins to realise the power that his new friendship is having on him and his loved ones…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • The hit TV movie Bernard and the Genie is remade for modern audiences looking for a whole new sense of magic
  • Richard Curtis, who also wrote the original, also writes this newer version with his trademark wit still very much intact
  • Melissa McCarthy plays the lively role once filled by Lenny Henry, with Gangs of London star Paapa Essiedu filling in for Alan Cumming (who also plays the role originated by Curtis regular Rowan Atkinson)
  • With the setting moved from London to New York, there’s a much warmer wintery atmosphere that helps embolden the overall festive spirit
  • Filled with laughs and magic aplenty, this is a fantasy comedy which you’ll be glad you wished for

Genie is streaming exclusively on Sky Cinema from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Family Switch (2023, dir. McG)

CAST: Jennifer Garner, Ed Helms, Emma Myers, Brady Noon, Rita Moreno, Matthias Schweighöfer, Bashir Salahuddin, Ilia Isorelýs Paulino, Fortune Feimster, Xosha Roquemore, Paul Scheer, King Bach, Pete Holmes, Naomi Ekperigin, Dan Finnerty, Cyrus Arnold

CREW: McG (director, producer), Victoria Strouse and Adam Sztykiel (writers), Ben Everard, Jennifer Garner, Lawrence Grey, Nicole King and Mary Viola (producers), Pinar Toprak (composer), Marc Spicer (cinematographer), Brian Scott Olds (editor)

PLOT: The Walker family – including mother Jess (Garner), father Bill (Helms), sixteen-year-old daughter CC (Myers) and fourteen-year-old son Wyatt (Noon) – has an encounter with a mysterious astrological reader (Moreno), which leads to all of them waking up the next day in each other’s bodies. Now, the switched family members must help each other out in order to achieve their goals and ultimately come closer as a family…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • Director and producer McG presents the mother of all Freaky Fridays as this time, it’s an entire family swapping bodies with each other!
  • Jennifer Garner (also a producer on the film) and Ed Helms gleefully play into their adolescent sides, while younger actors Emma Myers and Brady Noon have fun playing grown-ups in kids’ bodies
  • All sorts of shenanigans befall this family over the course of this magical day, from sought-after work promotions to important football matches
  • Just wait until you see who – or what – the family infant has had her body swapped with (rest assured, it’s a hilarious delight!)
  • It’s the perfect heart-warming family flick for mothers, fathers and children to watch and enjoy this festive season

Family Switch is streaming exclusively on Netflix from Thursday 30th November 2023

 

American Symphony (2023, dir. Matthew Heineman)

CAST: Jon Batiste, Suleika Jaouad

CREW: Matthew Heineman (director, producer, cinematographer, editor), Lauren Domino and Joedan Okun (producers), Jon Batiste (composer), Tony Hardmon, Clair Popkin and Thorsten Thielow (cinematographers), Sammy Dane, Jim Hession and Fernando Villegas (editors)

PLOT: A year in the life of multi award-winning musician Jon Batiste, wherein he sets out to create an original symphony, and deals with life-changing circumstances involving his life partner Suleika Jaouad…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker Matthew Heineman turns his camera towards an intimate portrayal of revered musician Jon Batiste
  • The film follows Batiste’s life over a monumental year that sees him wrestling with creative strife and the emotional turmoil with a close one’s illness
  • It also celebrates Batiste’s numerous successes over the years, from his role as bandleader on Stephen Colbert’s talk-show, to winning the Oscar for co-composing the score for Pixar’s Soul with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
  • The titular symphony itself is a work of art by Batiste, and it is played here for all viable ears to enjoy
  • Music lovers, and general fans of Batiste’s work, will be enraptured by how delicately the film’s celebration of this artist and his art is handled

American Symphony is streaming exclusively on Netflix from Wednesday 29th November 2023

What’s Returning to Cinemas This Week?

 

Scarface (1983, dir. Brian De Palma)

CAST: Al Pacino, Steven Bauer, Michelle Pfeiffer, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Robert Loggia, Míriam Colón, F. Murray Abraham, Paul Shenar, Harris Yulin, Ángel Salazar, Arnaldo Santana, Pepe Serna, Michael P. Moran, Al Israel, Dennis Holahan, Mark Margolis, Michael Alldredge, Ted Beniades, Albert Carrier, Caesar Cordova

CREW: Brian De Palma (director), Oliver Stone (writer), Martin Bregman (producer), Giorgio Moroder (composer), John A. Alonzo (cinematographer), Jerry Greenberg and David Ray (editors)

PLOT: In 1980, Cuban migrant Tony Montana (Pacino) arrives in Miami where he slowly rises through the ranks to become a powerful drug lord, but his succumbing to greed leads to his eventual downfall…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • Brian De Palma’s iconic gangster flick returns to cinemas in celebration of its milestone 40th anniversary
  • The film was a remake of the 1932 gangster film of the same name, with De Palma and screenwriter Oliver Stone updating the story with much more violent overtones
  • Al Pacino puts in a memorable lead turn as head gangster Tony Montana, whose rise and fall in the world of crime serves as one of cinema’s most compelling cautionary tales
  • Despite gaining controversy for its excessive violence and the questionable depiction of Cubans as criminals and drug dealers, the film became a commercial hit and has since been considered one of the greatest gangster movies ever made
  • It’s your chance to see the film whose eye-catching poster was once a staple for most college boys everywhere on the big screen

Scarface is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Elf (2003, dir. Jon Favreau)

CAST: Will Ferrell, James Caan, Zooey Deschanel, Mary Steenburgen, Ed Asner, Bob Newhart, Daniel Tay, Faizon Love, Peter Dinklage, Amy Sedaris, Michael Lerner, Andy Richter, Kyle Gass, Artie Lange, Jon Favreau, Matt Walsh, Peter Billingsley, Mark Acheson, Claire Lautier, David Paul Grove, Leon Redbone, Ray Harryhausen, Maurice LaMarche, Dallas McKennon

CREW: Jon Favreau (director), David Berenbaum (writer), Jon Berg, Todd Komarnicki and Shauna Robertson (producers), John Debney (composer), Greg Gardiner (cinematographer), Dan Lebental (editor)

PLOT: One Christmas Eve, a human baby orphan is accidentally transported to the North Pole, where he is raised by the elves who work for Santa Claus (Asner). Years later, the human-sized elf Buddy (Ferrell) learns that his biological father Walter Hobbs (Caan) lives in New York, and sets out to find and reconnect with him, only to find that his father is a ruthless businessman who, along with the rest of the city, has lost his Christmas spirit. Using his elf charm and love for the holiday, Buddy sets out to win over his father and the world with his infectious festive nature…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • The modern Christmas classic celebrates its 20th anniversary with a joyful return to cinemas
  • The film launched the big-screen career of Will Ferrell, whose hilarious performance as Buddy the Elf ranks among one of the 21st century’s most iconic comedy roles
  • Director Jon Favreau uses some creative filmmaking techniques to show the amusing contrast between the tiny elves and the human-sized protagonist
  • Since its release, the film has become a hugely popular festive favourite, with its energetic celebration of the Christmas spirit being just one of many Yuletide traditions found within its aesthetic
  • Kids both young and old will be able to share plenty of giggles as they witness Buddy’s hapless antics on the big screen

Elf is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

 

Saving Private Ryan (1998, dir. Steven Spielberg)

CAST: Tom Hanks, Edward Burns, Tom Sizemore, Jeremy Davies, Vin Diesel, Adam Goldberg, Barry Pepper, Giovanni Ribisi, Matt Damon, Dennis Farina, Ted Danson, Harve Presnell, Bryan Cranston, David Wohl, Nathan Fillion, Paul Giamatti, Ryan Hurst, Max Martini, Leland Orser, Glenn Wrage, Corey Johnson, John Sharian, Rolf Saxton, Demetri Goritsas, Dylan Bruno, Joerg Stadler, Amanda Boxer, Harrison Young, Kathleen Byron

CREW: Steven Spielberg (director, producer), Robert Rodat (writer), Ian Bryce, Mark Gordon and Gary Levinsohn (producers), John Williams (composer), Janusz Kaminski (cinematographer), Michael Kahn (editor)

PLOT: In 1944, after the US Army lands in Normandy, Captain John Miller (Hanks) is tasked with leading a small battalion of soldiers on a mission to locate and retrieve Private James Ryan (Damon), whose brothers were killed in battle…

FIVE REASONS TO BE EXCITED:

  • Steven Spielberg’s immersive and influential war epic is back on the big screen for its 25th anniversary
  • Since dazzling audiences and setting box office records in 1998, it’s become one of the most popular war movies of all time, with the brutal opening D-Day sequence being cited as a major influence on cinema going forward
  • Tom Hanks leads an ensemble that includes character actors such as Edward Burns, Barry Pepper and the late Tom Sizemore, as well as (then) newer faces like Matt Damon and Vin Diesel
  • The film won a number of accolades, including 5 Oscars (among them Spielberg’s second for Best Director), although it famously lost the Best Picture award to Shakespeare in Love, often considered one of the biggest upsets in Oscar history
  • Today, it remains a vital and astonishing piece of cinema that’s gritty, raw, and deeply emotional for any strong-stomached audience member to enjoy

Saving Private Ryan is showing in cinemas from Friday 1st December 2023

That’s about it for this week – be sure to come back next week for a whole new set of movies to work up an appetite for!

Want to see our past menus?

Want to find a specific film?

Search for it in the box below:

Wicked Little Letters (2024, dir. Thea Sharrock)

In 1920s Littlehampton, a series of vulgar letters rock the community…

Perfect Days (2023, dir. Wim Wenders)

A Tokyo toiler cleaner leads a carefully structured life…

Memory (2023, dir. Michel Franco)

A woman has a surprise encounter with an old high school classmate…

Someone’s Daughter, Someone’s Son (2024, dir. Lorna Tucker)

Filmmaker Lorna Tucker explores the UK’s ongoing homeless crisis…

Bob Marley: One Love (2024, dir. Reinaldo Marcus Green)

Reggae musician Bob Marley rises to prominence throughout the world…

Madame Web (2024, dir. S.J. Clarkson)

A clairvoyant paramedic protects a trio of young women from a mysterious assailant…

The Taste of Things (2023, dir. Trần Anh Hùng)

A gourmet chef is courted by her years-long employer…

The Promised Land (2023, dir. Nikolaj Arcel)

An 18th century Danish officer runs into complications whilst building on uninhabitable land…

Gassed Up (2024, dir. George Amponsah)

A London moped gang crosses paths with a dangerous crime family…

Suncoast (2024, dir. Laura Chinn)

A teenager struggles to care for her terminally ill brother…

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