Christopher Robin leads the new cinema releases and trailers August 17th 2018

Christopher RobinThis week, there are FIVE new films out for you to choose from, led by Christopher Robin. Here are the titles, with more info below:

    Christopher Robin
    Crazy Rich Asians
    The Equalizer 2 (CENSORED)
    The Happytime Murders
    God’s Not Dead 3: A Light In Darkness

Christopher Robin is… hang on, haven’t we already had this? Okay, so that was Goodbye Christopher Robin, but why do we always get two films in quick succession about a particular subject that no-one’s been too fussed about for a while? I first remember coming across this in 1991 with Patrick Bergin’s Robin Hood, and then Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves, starring Kevin Costner, which turned out a lot more successful, and is the only one of the two anyone really remembers. There are many other movies examples, since it seems to happen a lot.

Anyhoo, eschewing Domnhall Gleeson this time, we have Ewan McGregor as an adult Christopher Robin, who is now a slave to his work, often neglecting his family as a result. While out and about one day, he suddenly meets his old friend, Winnie the Pooh, who returns to his unforgotten childhood past to help him return to the Hundred Acre Wood and help find Pooh’s lost friends.

It also comes from director Marc Forster who brought us James Bond’s Quantum of Solace and, later, World War Z.

I’m not particularly fussed about this film, but as it’s from Disney, no doubt families will lap it up. Maybe they’ll add in some zombies to spice it up.

Director: Marc Forster
Also stars: Hayley Atwell, Chris O’Dowd, Toby Jones, Jim Cummings, Peter Capaldi, Brad Garrett, Mark Gatiss, Sophie Okonedo, Adrian Scarborough, Roger Ashton-Griffiths, Paul Chahidi, Nick Mohammed

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Maybe!

Crazy Rich Asians centres around three wealthy Chinese families, who prepare for the wedding of the year.

The story follows Rachel Chu (Constance Wu), an American-born Chinese economics professor, who travels to her boyfriend Nick’s (Henry Golding) hometown of Singapore for his best friend’s wedding. Before long, his secret is out: Nick is from a family that is impossibly wealthy, he’s perhaps the most eligible bachelor in Asia, and every single woman in his ultra-rarefied social class is incredibly jealous of Rachel and wants to bring her down.

Watching this trailer, I heard one man’s voice and I thought – “Damn, he sounds like Henry Golding from BBC News’ The Travel Show”, and guess what? It’s him!

It’s a solid fact that East Asian women are the hottest women in the world. And if I could find a rich one, even better!

Director: Jon M Chu
Also stars: Michelle Yeoh, Gemma Chan, Awkwafina, Ken Jeong, Jimmy O Yang, Chris Pang, Sonoya Mizuno, Jing Lusi, Ronny Chieng, Pierre Png

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

The Equalizer 2 sees Denzel Washington return as Robert McCall, the unlikely crusader, attempting to serve an unflinching justice for the exploited and oppressed, but how far will he go when that is someone he loves?

Do you care? I don’t. The first one looked ridiculous enough, and not a patch on the great’ 80s series with Edward Woodward. He wasn’t all action-orientated, whereas Washington looks more like he’s trying to copy the dire Taken movies. Roll on The Equalizer 3 in 2021, then(!)

Then again, No.1 cost $55m to make and only recouped $192m worldwide, and the big studios would be wanting a return of around $800m to have a runaway hit, so under $200m is pretty poor.

Oh, and the first one was cut from an 18 to a 15-certificate in the UK. This has also happened to No.2, and even one of the trailers for No.2 was an 18! As per the BBFC website:

    “This film was originally seen for advice at which stage the company was informed it was likely to be classified 18 uncut but that their preferred 15 classification could be achieved by making reductions to scenes of strong violence and gore. When the film was submitted for formal classification these scenes had been acceptably reduced.”

Director: Antoine Fuqua
Also stars: Pedro Pascal, Bill Pullman, Melissa Leo, Jonathan Scarfe, Sakina Jaffrey, Ashton Sanders, Lexie Roth, Caroline Day

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!

The Happytime Murders is one of those things which must’ve sounded like a good idea, but in the final analysis, I’ve had more laughs at funerals watching The Muppets swear a lot, and in this trailer, they’re effing and jeffing occasionally.

The film is set in the underbelly of Los Angeles where puppets and humans co-exist. Two clashing detectives – one human and one puppet – are forced to work together to try and solve who is brutally murdering the former cast of “The Happytime Gang”, a beloved classic puppet show.

It comes from Brian Henson, one of the Henson clan, who also directed 1992’s The Muppet Christmas Carol and 1996’s Muppet Treasure Island, but even if it did have anything going for it, that soon flies out the window when the human detective shows up: Melissa McCarthy.

Of course, things could be different as she also has a drama coming out later this year, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Also stars: Elizabeth Banks, Joel McHale, Maya Rudolph, Jimmy O Yang, Leslie David Baker, Ryan Gaul, Cynthy Wu
Writers: Todd Berger, Dee Austin Robertson

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!

God’s Not Dead 3: A Light In Darkness

A church destroyed. A congregation silenced. A relationship shattered. Yet even in life’s darkest valleys, a small flame can light the way toward healing and hope. After a deadly fire rips through St. James Church, Hadleigh University leaders use the tragedy to push the congregation off campus, forcing the church to defend its rights and bringing together estranged brothers for a reunion that opens old wounds and forces them to address the issues that pulled them apart.

Who cares…

Director: Michael Mason
Starring: David AR White, Jennifer Taylor, Tatum O’Neil, John Corbett

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!