Arrival leads the new cinema releases & trailers w/e November 11th 2016

arrival This weekend there are six new films out for you to choose from: the aliens return to Earth in Arrival, Ewan McGregor makes a feature-length directorial debut with American Pastoral, there’s Polish World War II drama in The Innocents, there’s close-knit London-based drama in 100 Streets, potential comedy in True Memoirs of an International Assassin, and zero comedy in Kevin Hart: What Now?.

Arrival – The aliens are coming! Again!

And once again, it looks like they’re going to take over the world, and everyone will die, unless just one of us can crack their code and communicate with them. Have you figured out who it’ll be? Well, her name’s in the subject – it’s Amy Adams from Man of Steel!

She plays Dr Louise Banks and, after the alien crafts in the poster land around the world, she’s the cunning linguist recruited by the military to figure out whether they come in peace or are a threat.

Directed by Denis Villeneuve (Sicario, Enemy, Prisoners), from a script by Eric Heisserer, who made turned Ted Chiang‘s short story into a full two-hour movie, the film also stars Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker, Michael Stuhlbarg, Nathaly Thibault and Mark O’Brien.

It’s difficult to say whether it’ll be any good based on this trailer, but I’ll err on the side of…

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

American Pastoral is Ewan McGregor‘s feature-length directorial debut where he plays Seymour ‘Swede’ Levov, also looking like he’s had some CGI on his face rather like Joseph Gordon Levitt did in Looper.

Set in postwar America, ‘Swede’ watches his apparently perfect life fall apart as his daughter Merry’s (Dakota Fanning) new political affiliation threatens to destroy their family.

With a screenplay from John Romano, based on the Philip Roth novel, and a cast that includes Jennifer Connelly, Molly Parker, Rupert Evans, David Strathairn and Peter Riegert, this looks rather offbeat – especially given McGregor’s appearance, and certainly worth a watch.

McGregor previously directed the segment “Bone” from 1999’s Tube Tales, a near 90-minute film based on the stories of nine true-life experiences of London Underground passengers, and this definitely looks worth a watch.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

The Innocents

Poland, winter of 1945. Mathilde Beaulieu (Lou de Lâage) is a young intern working with a branch of the French Red Cross. They are on a mission to find, treat and repatriate French survivors of the German camps. One day, a Polish nun arrives in the hospital. In very poor French, she begs Mathilde to come to her convent. For Mathilde, life and beliefs change when she discovers the advanced state of pregnancy that affect several of the Sisters of the convent just outside the hospital where she performs.

With its release coming close to December, it helps with the movie’s winter theme, and this does look very intriguing.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

100 Streets is centered around three people, with three extraordinary stories, and all lived within a hundred London streets.

With a cast including Idris Elba, Gemma Arterton, Tom Cullen, Charlie Creed-Miles, Ken Stott and Kierston Wareing, the trailer doesn’t give too much away but did grip me within a very short space of time, so while this is unlikely to get a big-screen release in most multiplexes, it certainly looks one to watch on Blu-ray and DVD.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

True Memoirs of an International Assassin

Kevin James in the improbable alleged comedy from Netflix about a publisher who changes his writer character’s debut novel about a deadly assassin from fiction to non-fiction, leading to the loudmouth finding himself thrust into the world of his lead character, and must take on the role of his character for his own survival.

This ‘fish out of water’ story doesn’t look completely without merit, as there’s a handful of gags that made me laugh in this trailer, as Andy Garcia sensds himself up, and he gets taken down a peg or two by uber-hottie Zulay Henao.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

Kevin Hart: What Now?

A recording of a gig on his tour in August 2015, prefaced by a scene that looked slightly amusing before it went into his usual dirge.

Overall, I find Kevin Hart about as funny as the perianal abscess I had treated in 1995. What Now? Switch him off!

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!