Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to pay attention to our newest offering of film releases for the week, which includes a long-awaited spy epic featuring one of the biggest stars in the world, an endearing time-travel anime romance, and a Spanish spin-off of a Netflix apocalyptic universe…

Movie of the Week


Streaming + On-Demand


Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One (2023, dir. Christopher McQuarrie)

CAST: Tom Cruise, Hayley Atwell, Esai Morales, Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Vanessa Kirby, Henry Czerny, Shea Whigham, Greg Tarzan Davis, Frederick Schmidt, Pom Klementieff, Charles Parnell, Rob Delaney, Indira Varma, Mark Gatiss, Mariela Garriga, Cary Elwes

CREW: Christopher McQuarrie (director, writer, producer), Erik Jendresen (writer), Tom Cruise and Leifur B. Dagfinnsson (producers), Lorne Balfe (composer), Fraser Taggart (cinematographer), Eddie Hamilton (editor)

PLOT: Ethan Hunt (Cruise) and his IMF teammates Luther (Rhames), Benji (Pegg) and Ilsa (Ferguson) are tasked with tracking down a terrifying new weapon that could destroy humanity, and stopping it from getting in the wrong hands. As the fate of the world hangs in the balance, and with dark forces from his past quickly closing in, Hunt must consider the importance of his mission, even above the lives of those closest to him…


1) The seventh entry of the hugely popular global espionage franchise once again sees star/producer Tom Cruise committing the most dangerous on-screen stunts (including riding a motorcycle off a cliff!) for the sake of our endless entertainment

2) Christopher McQuarrie returns once more to direct and co-write, while popular franchise stars Ving Rhames, Rebecca Ferguson, Simon Pegg, and Henry Czerny (from all the way back in the first movie from 1996) are also back in challenging new chapters for their characters

3) The movie took several years to shoot, largely due to the COVID-19 pandemic delaying production by months, and forcing sequences to be shifted around the world in order to accommodate less-restrictive health and safety measures

4) Some of the exotic international locations this time include Rome, Norway, Venice, and the vast deserts of Abu Dhabi

5) Expect things to end on a nail-biting cliffhanger, set to conclude next year with Part Two – which, if rumours are to be believed, may be Cruise’s final outing as Ethan Hunt

Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One is showing in cinemas from Tuesday 11th July 2023



The Tunnel to Summer, the Exit of Goodbyes (2022, dir. Tomohisa Taguchi)

CAST: Marie Iitoyo, Ōji Suzuka, Arisa Komiya, Haruka Terui, Rikiya Koyama, Seiran Kobayashi, Tasuku Hatanaka

CREW: Tomohisa Taguchi (director, writer), Akenosuke Kanazawa, Makiko Mameda and Keijirô Taguchi (producers), Harumi Fuuki (composer), Kô Hoshina (cinematographer), Akinori Mishima (editor)

PLOT: One summer, high school student Kaoru (Suzuka) learns of a mysterious tunnel that is rumoured to grant any wish of those who walk through it, but in exchange it will age them drastically. Kaoru decides to try it out in the hopes that it will bring back his younger sister from her untimely death, but he is unexpectedly joined by his enigmatic classmate Anzu (Iitoyo), and they work together to explore the tunnel’s mysteries and deal with the emotional consequences…


1) Anime filmmaker Tomohisa Taguchi, best known for his work on the recent spin-off series Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War, directs this tender adaptation of Mei Hachimoku’s light novel

2) The story is a magical realist study of the sacrifices made in exchange for what we desire the most in life

3) Its two central characters form a compassionate romance that may leave you moved by its power

4) The animation itself is stunning to behold, a true testament to the power of hand-drawn artistry

5) Following Makoto Shinkai’s Suzume earlier this year, this is just the latest in a strong year for anime features by respected auteurs of the field

The Tunnel to Summer, the Exit of Goodbyes is showing in cinemas from Friday 14th July 2023

While We Watched (2023, dir. Vinay Shukla)

CAST: Ravish Kumar, Sushil Bahuguna, Deepak Chaubey, Sushil Mohapatra, Swarolipi Sengupta, Saurabh Shukla

CREW: Vinay Shukla (director, writer, producer, cinematographer), Reshma Ramachandran, Amaan Shaikh and Abhinav Tyagi (writers), Luke W. Moody and Khushboo Ranka (producers), Joaquin Garcia (composer), Amaan Shaikh (cinematographer), Abhinav Tyagi (editor)

PLOT: Ravish Kumar is a renowned Indian TV journalist known for his ruthless on-air takedowns of the ruling establishment, but when press freedoms suddenly begins to disintegrate, Kumar is faced with political and personal backlash that puts his life in danger…


1) The dangers of state-controlled press are explored in this powerful and timely new documentary

2) TV journalist Ravish Kumar is the central figure, as the film charts his difficult experiences during India’s crackdown on independent media

3) It also shows the rise of extremists spreading misinformation on a national scale through increasingly one-sided platforms

4) Parallels will undoubtedly be made to the alarming methods of far-right propaganda in Western civilisations, especially in the United States

5) It’s a film with messages that we desperately need to be reminded of in this era of fake news and totalitarian control over the supposed freedom of the press

While We Watched is showing in cinemas from Friday 14th July 2023

Puffin Rock and the New Friends (2023, dir. Jeremy Purcell)

CAST: Chris O’Dowd, Amy Huberman, Eva Whittaker, Beth McCafferty, Aaron McGregor, Euan McGrath

CREW: Jeremy Purcell (director), Sara Daddy (writer), John McDaid, Tomm Moore, Nora Twomey and Paul Young (producers), Eberg (composer), Sophie Borlée (editor)

PLOT: On the island of Puffin Rock, the last Little Egg of the season suddenly disappears, prompting a group of young animal friends to set out and find it before a big storm arrives on the island…


1) The delightful pre-school animated series is brought to the big screen for an endearing feature-length adventure

2) It is co-produced by Cartoon Saloon, the Irish animation studio behind Oscar-nominated features like The Secret of Kells, Song of the Sea and Wolfwalkers

3) Chris O’Dowd narrates the story as he does in the original series, with support from other Irish talent such as The Clinic star Amy Huberman

4) The simple narrative is accompanied by some gorgeous visuals, both of which should stimulate the minds and eyes of its young target audience and their parents/guardians

5) It’s a gentle reminder that animation has the power to enchant viewers of all ages

Puffin Rock and the New Friends is showing in cinemas from Friday 14th July 2023

Squaring the Circle (The Story of Hipgnosis) (2023, dir. Anton Corbijn)

CAST: Aubrey Powell, Storm Thorgerson, Paul McCartney, Roger Waters, Noel Gallagher, David Gilmour, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, Nick Mason, Graham Gouldman, Peter Gabriel

CREW: Anton Corbijn (director), Trish D Chetty (writer, producer), Ged Doherty and Colin Firth (producers), Stuart Luck and Martijn van Broekhuizen (cinematographers), Andrew Hulme (editor)

PLOT: In 1968, graphic designers Aubrey Powell and Storm Thorgerson found Hipgnosis, an art company that would go on to design the iconic album covers for artists like Pink Floyd, Paul McCartney and Wings, Led Zeppelin and Peter Gabriel…


1) The company behind some of the most iconic images in music history is the subject of filmmaker Anton Corbijn’s striking new documentary

2) Surviving founder Aubrey Powell recounts how he and late business partner Storm Thorgerson used their unique artistic skills to forever alter the image of popular music

3) Some of their most famous commissioners, including Paul McCartney, Noel Gallagher and Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters, are interviewed on camera about their experiences with Hipgnosis

4) Shot in stark black-and-white (as seems to be Corbijn’s style, at least in his narrative features like Control), the film itself is as much of a work of art as the iconic album covers were

5) It’s a must-see for music fans who are curious to know the backstory for certain album covers such as the mesmerising one for Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon

Squaring the Circle (The Story of Hipgnosis) is showing in cinemas from Friday 14th July 2023 (and will be available to rent/buy on most digital platforms)

Pinocchio: A True Story (2021, dir. Vasiliy Rovenskiy)

CAST: Pauly Shore, Jon Heder, Tom Kenny, Liza Klimova, Bernard Jacobsen, Kate Lann, David Grout, Andrey Kurganov, Stephen Ochsner, Andrew Winn

CREW: Vasiliy Rovenskiy (director, writer, producer), Maksim Sveshnikov and Vadim Sveshnikov (producers), Anton Gryzlov (composer), Eduard Nuritdinov (editor)

PLOT: The carpenter Geppetto (Kenny) creates a wooden puppet named Pinocchio (Shore), which comes alive and desires to become a real boy and explore the world. He soon runs away from home, with his horse Tybalt (Heder) for company, and soon joins a travelling circus run by nefarious conman Mojafocco (Jacobsen)…


1) The third, and perhaps the most unintentionally hilarious, of 2022’s trend of Pinocchio movies finally gets a proper UK release

2) Made in Russia back in 2021, this fully CG-animated take on the classic story makes some, erm, interesting choices in both its plotting and especially its casting for the English dub

3) Pauly Shore voices the wooden puppet himself, a decision that caused the dub’s trailer to go viral for all the wrong reasons, with supporting work from voice actor Tom Kenny and Napoleon Dynamite himself Jon Heder

4) Despite universally negative reviews – as of writing, it has a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes – it is quickly becoming a cult classic of so-bad-it’s-good cinema, largely because of the hilarious miscasting of Pauly Shore

5) Upon watching it, you’ll have a whole new level of admiration and respect for Guillermo del Toro’s Oscar-winning take on the material, and maybe even Disney’s terrible remake (though that one seems less likely)!

Pinocchio: A True Story is showing in cinemas from Friday 14th July 2023

Medusa (2022, dir. Anita Rocha da Silveira)

CAST: Mariana Oliveira, Lara Tremouroux, Joana Medeiros, Felipe Frazão, Thiago Fragoso, Bruna G., Bruna Linzmeyer, Carol Romano, Fernanda Lasevitch, Isadora Ruppert, Julianna Pimenta, Anita Chaves, Natália Balbino, João Oliveira

CREW: Anita Rocha da Silveira (director, writer), Mayra Auad, Vânia Catani and Fernanda Thurann (producers), Bernardo Uzeda (composer), João Atala (cinematographer), Marilia Moraes (editor)

PLOT: In Brazil, Mariana (Oliveira) and her friends fuel their compressed but faithful lives by forming a night-time vigilante gang, where they go around in search of sinners who have strayed from the rightful path. However, when an attack goes wrong, Mariana finds herself dealing with her moral compass and her own relationship with faith…


1) The latest feature from Brazilian filmmaker Anita Rocha da Silveira, of the acclaimed dark comedy-thriller Kill Me Please, is a chilling look at the unhealthy combo of religious hypocrisy and sexist ideology

2) It explores them in a surreal and almost dream-like fashion, one that would make David Lynch and Dario Argento very happy

3) There’s a burning anger to the way things are portrayed, especially when it feeds into that underlying female rage its central characters feel throughout

4) You are intentionally made to feel uncomfortable as you witness the firm grasp that patriarchal doctrine has on these characters, and are invited to make keen observations regarding the role of religion in society

5) It works as both a thriller with fiery social commentary, and as a damning takedown of the systems designed to keep women and other minorities in check

Medusa is showing in cinemas from Friday 14th July 2023

A Kind of Kidnapping (2022, dir. D.G. Clark)

CAST: Patrick Baladi, Kelly Wenham, Jack Parry-Jones, Olivia Poulet, Leila Hoffman, Sherelle Armstrong, Johanna Allitt, Gary Kitching, Luke McQueen, Sharuna Sagar

CREW: D.G. Clark (director, writer), Richard Wylie (producer), Darren Berry (composer), Ben Saffer (cinematographer), Rachel Durance (editor)

PLOT: Maggie (Wenham) and Brian (Parry-Jones) are a couple who are struggling to get by, and decide to kidnap sleazy politician Richard Hardy (Baladi) in order to solve their problems. However, nobody seems willing to pay the ransom for the largely despised Hardy, who decides to spin his kidnapping to gain some much-needed PR…


1) This darkly funny satire takes aim at the current political climate with some hilariously grim results

2) It is the feature directorial debut of D.G. Clark, best known for the short-lived sitcom How Not to Live Your Life

3) Patrick Baladi gets plenty of mileage out of playing a two-faced politician, clearly based on numerous public figures from the last few years of UK politics

4) The movie won a handful of awards at the Manchester Film Festival, including for Clark’s screenplay and for Kelly Wenham’s all-encompassing performance

5) It’s a film with plenty of laugh-out-loud moments, and ones that’ll leave you in a state of shock

A Kind of Kidnapping is showing in cinemas from Friday 14th July 2023



Bird Box Barcelona (2023, dirs. Álex Pastor and David Pastor)

CAST: Mario Casas, Naila Schuberth, Georgina Campbell, Diego Calva, Alejandra Howard, Lola Dueñas, Patrick Criado, Gonzalo de Castro, Michelle Jenner, Leonardo Sbaraglia, Celia Freijeiro

CREW: Álex Pastor and David Pastor (directors, writers), Dylan Clark, Adrián Guerra, Chris Morgan and Núria Valls (producers), Zeltia Montes (composer), Daniel Aranyó (cinematographer), Luis de la Madrid and Martí Roca (editors)

PLOT: The world has descended into chaos after it is invaded by creatures that cause people to kill themselves upon seeing them. In the desolate city of Barcelona, Sebastián (Casas) and his young daughter Sofia (Schuberth) must find a way to escape their fate while keeping their eyes from seeing the fateful creatures…


1) The post-apocalyptic world introduced in the 2018 Netflix phenomenon Bird Box is expanded upon in this frightening and nail-bitingly tense spin-off

2) We are transported to the titular Spanish city, which adds a whole new dimension to the sci-fi terror unleashing before your very eyes

3) Mario Casas and Naila Schuberth are the central focus here, with meaty supporting roles for Barbarian’s Georgina Campbell and Babylon breakout Diego Calva

4) The characters find new and inventive ways of avoiding direct eye contact with the deadly creatures (which might even inspire a whole new online trend as the first film did)

5) It opens up numerous possibilities of stories to tell within this universe, in worldwide locations that might have their own ways of surviving the apocalyptic madness

Bird Box Barcelona is streaming exclusively on Netflix from Friday 14th July 2023

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

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