Rosewater and Spooks: The Greater Good lead the new cinema releases & trailers – w/e May 8th 2015

rosewaterThis weekend there are ELEVEN new films out for you to choose from: political drama in Jon Stewart’s Rosewater, TV on the big screen in Spooks: The Greater Good, time-bending drama in The Age of Adaline, psychological horror in The Canal, comedy in A Funny Kind of Love, gang-related drama in Girlhood, zombie horror in Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead, wartime drama in Queen and Country and Phoenix, action for kids in Big Game, and Chris Rock being racist as always in Top Five.

Rosewater features Gael García Bernal as a journalist who is detained in Iran for more than 100 days and brutally interrogated in prison by a man called Rosewater, played by The Bridge‘s Kim Bodnia.

Written and directed by The Daily Show‘s Jon Stewart, I was looking forward anyway to see his creation after he took several months off from the show in 2013 to make this, and to know that it also stars Kim Bodnia? This is a must!

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

Spooks: The Greater Good… YES! Spooks! The TV series! The one which ran for a mammoth ten series from 2002 to 2011, starring Peter Firth as the much-put-upon Harry Pearce! It’s back! In full-length movie form!

As for the plot? When a terrorist escapes custody during a routine handover, Will Crombie must team with disgraced MI5 Intelligence Chief Harry Pearce to track him down before an imminent terrorist attack on London.

The film has a fantastic cast including stars Kit Harington, Jennifer Ehle, Lara Pulver, Tuppence Middleton, David Harewood and Tim McInnerny, and it’s been directed by Bharat Nalluri, who also directed the very first two, and the very last two episodes of the TV series.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

The Age of Adaline sees Gossip Girl‘s Blake Lively plays the titular lead, born in 1908 and who is rendered ageless after a car accident.

After miraculously remaining 29 years old for almost eight decades, Adaline Bowman has lived a solitary existence, never allowing herself to get close to anyone who might reveal her secret. But a chance encounter with charismatic philanthropist Ellis Jones reignites her passion for life and romance. When a weekend with his parents threatens to uncover the truth, Adaline makes a decision that will change her life forever.

Also starring Ellen Burstyn, Harrison Ford, Amanda Crew and Richard Harmon, while Ms Lively is not the sort of actress whose career I have followed, I do love anything to do with time travel, or something of that bent, and so I want to see this.

The Canal

Film archivist David (Rupert Evans) has been having a rough time lately, as he suspects that his wife Alice (Hannah Hoekstra) has been cheating on him with Alex (Carl Shaaban), one of her work clients. This stress is compounded when David’s work partner Claire (the lovely Antonia Campbell-Hughes) gives him a reel of to-be-archived footage that shows that his house was the setting for a brutal murder in 1902.

Becoming progressively more unsettled and unhinged, David begins to believe that a spectral presence is in his house and ends up following his wife to a nearby canal, where he discovers that she is indeed having an affair with Alex. When Alice goes missing shortly afterwards, David contacts the police – only to become the prime suspect in her disappearance. As the police grow more convinced that David has murdered his wife, he struggles to find proof of his growing suspicion that something otherworldly was instead responsible.

Also starring Hannah Hoekstra, Kelly Byrne and Steve Oram, this looks like a great psychological horror and I really want to see this.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

A Funny Kind of Love (aka The Little Death, to giveit the original Australian title) is a truly original comedy about sex, love, relationships and taboo.

In a multi-story narrative, we peer behind the closed doors of a seemingly normal suburban street. A woman with a dangerous fantasy and her partners struggle to please her. A man who begins an affair with his own wife without her knowing anything about it. A couple struggling to keep things together after a sexual experiment spins out of control. A woman who can only find pleasure in her husband’s pain. A call centre operator caught in the middle of a dirty and chaotic phone call. And the distractingly charming new neighbour who connects them all.

You can also see a clip from the film, here.

The film is written and directed by Josh Lawson, who also stars alongside Bojana Novakovic, Damon Herriman, Stephanie May and Tasneem Roc and looks like it could be worth a watch so I’ll err on the side of…

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!


Oppressed by her family setting, dead-end school prospects and the boys law in the neighborhood, Marieme starts a new life after meeting a group of 3 free-spirited girls. She changes her name, her dress code, and quits school to be accepted in the gang, hoping that this will be a way to freedom.

Starring Karidja Touré, Assa Sylla, Lindsay Karamoh and Mariétou Touré, I’m very intrigued by this so it looks like a must-see.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead

Barry (Jay Gallagher) is a talented mechanic and family man whose life is torn apart on the eve of a zombie apocalypse. His sister, Brooke (Bianca Bradey), is kidnapped by a sinister team of gas-mask wearing soldiers & experimented on by a psychotic doctor. While Brooke plans her escape Barry goes out on the road to find her & teams up with Benny, a fellow survivor – together they must arm themselves and prepare to battle their way through hordes of flesh-eating monsters in a harsh Australian bushland.

Also starring Leon Burchill and Luke McKenzie, while it’s difficult to make a zombie film look fresh, there definitely appears to be a great deal of black humour in this and it’s a…

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

Queen and Country

In this sequel to 1987’s Hope and Glory, Bill Rohan (Callum Turner) has grown up and is drafted into the army, where he and his eccentric best mate, Percy, battle their snooty superiors on the base and look for love in town.

The film also stars Caleb Landry Jones, Pat Shortt, David Thewlis, Richard E Grant, Vanessa Kirby, Tamsin Egerton, Aimee-Ffion Edwards, Miriam Rizea, Sinéad Cusack and David Hayman, this isn’t really my sort of film. If it’s yours, then fill your boots, but for me…?

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!


Nelly Lenz (Nina Hoss), a Jewish singer, has survived the Nazi concentration camps but at what cost? She is disfigured and has had to undergo facial surgery. Back in what is left of Berlin, accompanied by her faithful friend Lene (Nina Kunzendorf), she has only one thing in mind, finding Johnny (Ronald Zehrfeld), her musician husband in the ruins of the city. She wants to know if he still loves her and if he has betrayed her, as Lene claims he has. She does meet him but Johnny does not recognize her. Worse, he asks her to impersonate… Nelly, with a view to grabbing her inheritance.

I wasn’t wowed by the trailer but it had a certain style to it and I’ll err on the side of…

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

Big Game must sound like the dream that Hollywood execs have been waiting for – Samuel L Jackson plays The President of the United States!

When Air Force One is shot down by terrorists leaving the President stranded in the wilderness, there is only one person around who can save him – a 13-year old boy called Oskari (Onni Tommila) who, in the forest on a hunting mission to prove his maturity to his kinsfolk, had been planning to track down a deer, but instead discovers the most powerful man on the planet in an escape pod.

With the terrorists closing in to capture their own “Big Game” prize, the unlikely duo must team up to escape their hunters. As anxious Pentagon officials observe the action via satellite feed, it is up to the President and his new side-kick to prove themselves and survive the most extraordinary 24 hours of their lives.

So, like I said, it sounds like a great idea, but… it looks exceptionally dull… except unless you’re a child.

Big Game also stars Ray Stevenson, Jim Broadbent, Ted Levine, Felicity Huffman and Victor Garber.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!

Top Five doesn’t make my Top five of films this week, as it’s another pile of unfunny junk with Chris “Hey, people will laugh if I shout and if I keep reminding them of my skin colour, right?” Rock.

He also proves himself to be a racist by referring in derogatory terms of “white people”. WTF is wrong with him??

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!