This week, there are FIVE new films out for you to choose from: action octoquel in Fast and Furious 8, Japanese/Korean critically-acclaimed drama in The Handmaiden, an engaging Clive Owen drama in The Confirmation, old men go out in style for the second week running in The Hatton Garden Job, and Jim Broadbent finds a sixth sense in The Sense of an Ending.
Fast and Furious 8 is the eighth movie of endless nonsensical bollocks masquerading as a form of entertainment, mostly starring Vin Diesel as ‘man who can drive fast’ Dominic Toretto.
This time round, he’s on his honeymoon with Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), while Mia (Jordana Brewster) and Brian (Paul Walker) have retired from racing. Well, Mr Walker’s no longer making films after his friend Roger Rodas drove them both into a concrete lamp post and two trees in November 2013, at around 100mph. I would be querying just how much cocaine Rodas had shoved up his hooter to make him think that driving at that speed was in any way acceptable, but apparently there was none!
But back to Fast 8, and with the rest of the crew exonerated, the team has found a semblance of a normal life. But when a mysterious woman, Cipher (Charlize Theron), seduces Dom into a world of crime he can’t seem to escape, causing him to betray those closest to him, they will face trials that will test them as never before…. it says here. But you just know that when the trailer is making it look like he doesn’t want his ‘family’ any more, he’ll just be winding us all up, and when the film comes round, everything will work out in the end, and they’ll be onto film No.9.
F Gary Gray (Straight Outta Compton) also directs Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Scott Eastwood, Lucas Black, Helen Mirren, Kurt Russell, Tyrese Gibson and Ludacris as The Fate Of The Furious is released in the UK on April 14th, 2017.
Hit or Miss? Verdict: Read the review!
The Handmaiden (aka Ah-ga-ssi)
1930s Korea, in the period of Japanese occupation, a new girl (Sookee) is hired as a handmaiden to a Japanese heiress (Hideko) who lives a secluded life on a large countryside estate with her domineering Uncle (Kouzuki). But the maid has a secret. She is a pickpocket recruited by a swindler posing as a Japanese Count to help him seduce the Lady to elope with him, rob her of her fortune, and lock her up in a madhouse. The plan seems to proceed according to plan until Sookee and Hideko discover some unexpected emotions.
Directed by Chan-wook Park, based on the novel Fingersmith, and starring Min-hee Kim, Tae-ri Kim, Jung-woo Ha, Jin-woong Jo, Hae-suk Kim and So-ri Moon, this looks stylish even if the trailer doesn’t give away much. However, it has only had good word about it, including from DVDfever reviewer Helen M Jerome when she saw it at the BFI London Film Festival last year.
Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!
The Confirmation stars Clive Owen as Walt, an alcoholic, down-on-his-luck carpenter whose 8-year-old son, Anthony (Jaeden Lieberher) is feeling uneasy about spending the weekend with him, while his mum, Bonnie (Maria Bello) and her new husband Kyle (Matthew Modine) go to a Catholic retreat together.
Walt is just as uneasy about spending time with Anthony, especially since their first day together is a series of characteristically unfortunate events, including his truck breaking down, his landlord locking him out of the house, and the theft of his toolbox which he needs for an upcoming job. As Walt and Anthony set about finding the guy who stole the tools and improvise around their other misfortunes, they begin to discover a true connection with each other, causing Walt to become a better father and Anthony to reveal the promise and potential of the good man he will become.
Sounds very ‘Awww… shucks’, but it actually looks pretty decent.
Written and directed by Bob Nelson, it also stars Stephen Tobolowsky, Robert Forster and Tim Blake Nelson, and since Bob Nelson also wrote 2013’s superb Nesbraska, I’m very much looking forward to this. It’s just a shame that it’s been delayed for over a year from the US release.
Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!
The Hatton Garden Job
In April 2015, the Hatton Garden Safe Deposit Company, an underground safe deposit facility in London’s Hatton Garden area, was burgled by 4 elderly men. The total stolen may have a value of up to £200 million, the incident has been called the “largest burglary in English legal history.”
The film is directed by Ronnie Thompson and stars Matthew Goode, Joely Richardson, Stephen Moyer, Clive Russell, David Calder, Phil Daniels and Larry Lamb, so it has a good cast, but since this is the one where old men rob a bank, even though it’s based on the real life story, the fact it’s been released a week after the remake of Going In Style means it won’t get a look-in at all, however good or bad it is. For a low-budget movie, that’s crazy bad timing.
However, in watching this, it looks like it could be pretty decent, even if we have seen this sort of thing many times.
Hit or Miss? Verdict: Maybe!
The Sense of an Ending stars Jim Broadbent as a man haunted by his past, with a solicitor’s letter presenting a mysterious legacy which causes him to re-think his current situation in life.
Also starring Charlotte Rampling, Harriet Walter, Michelle Dockery, Matthew Goode, Emily Mortimer and James Wilby, this doesn’t look like a huge amount to make a song and dance about.
Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!