Director Garth Davis brings dramatic heft and shimmering visuals to this saga of five-year-old Saroo (the beguiling Sunny Pawar), who is accidentally stranded in Kolkata, 950 miles from his home in Madhya Pradesh. Afraid and disoriented, he faces overwhelming challenges, but is eventually adopted by an Australian couple (Nicole Kidman and David Wenham) who lovingly parent him in their native Tasmania. While on a hotel management course 25 years later, the grown-up Saroo (Patel) meets and falls in love with Lucy (Mara), who then helps him to search for the mother he still yearns for back in India. Based on a true story, this is an arresting, emotionally charged and Oscar-worthy tale.
Director: Bill Condon
Starring: Emma Watson, Luke Evans, Stanley Tucci, Ian McKellen. USA 2017. 129 mins.
Back in 1991, the Walt Disney Company released Beauty And The Beast, an exquisitely drawn feature animation that became a gargantuan hit, delighting both audiences and critics and spinning off a blockbuster Broadway musical. So who better to breathe new life into the beloved French fairy tale – with its very modern message of not judging people by their appearance – in a live-action telling than the studio that made it a movie classic in the first place? Veteran director Bill Condon (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Parts 1 & 2, Dreamgirls, Mr Holmes) has refashioned the characters for a contemporary audience but stayed true to the animation’s music, with several new songs and an amended score by the original composer, Alan Menken. Get ready to be wowed all over again.
Director: Ben Wheatley.
Starring: Sharlto Copley, Armie Hammer, Brie Larson, Cillian Murphy, Jack Reynor, Sam Riley, Noah Taylor. UK 2016. 91 mins.
Ben Wheatley (Sightseers, A Field In England) follows hot on the heels of his last feature, High-Rise, with this all-guns-blazing action thriller.
In America in 1978, Justine (Larson) has arranged a deal on behalf of two Irishmen (Cillian Murphy, Michael Smiley) to buy a stash of guns from gangsters Vernon (Copley) and Ord (Hammer), but then there’s a misunderstanding and shots are fired… The standout cast have great fun with this shoot-’em-up and the playful script’s wry dialogue as the manic standoff escalates into a bloody game of survival.
Director: Jordan Peele
Starring: Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Bradley Whitford . USA 2017. 104 mins.
American sitcom star Jordan Peele turns writer/director for this smartly observed, almost Hitchcockian comedy thriller concerning Chris (Kaluuya) and Rose (Williams), who’ve reached the stage in their relationship when it’s time for him to meet her parents. Unfortunately, it doesn’t pan out as planned: Rose hasn’t told her parents that Chris is black, and despite their best efforts to appear liberal, her somewhat creepy mum and dad are revealed as being anything but.