The Lady In The Van leads the new cinema releases & trailers – w/e November 13th 2015

the-lady-in-the-vanThis weekend there are seven new films out for you to choose from: comedy/drama in The Lady In The Van, drama in Steve Jobs, horror in The Hallow, more drama in Closer To The Moon, utter tediousness in Fathers And Daughters, and a kids movie with some big names in A Christmas Star.

The Lady in the Van has a simple premise that states: “A man forms an unexpected bond with a transient woman living in her car that’s parked in his driveway.”

However, that man is writer extraordinaire Alan Bennett, played brilliantly – based on this trailer – by Alex Jennings, and the woman is Miss Shepherd (the one and only Maggie Smith). He helps her get her van into his driveway, where she stays for quite some time, but just how will things pan out?

Alan Bennett, himself, wrote the screenplay for this movie which is directed by Nicholas Hytner (The History Boys) and it also stars Dominic Cooper, Frances de la Tour, Jim Broadbent, Russell Tovey, Roger Allam, Stephen Campbell Moore and, for no apparent reason, James Corden.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

Steve Jobs is the man who used to run Apple until his untimely death on October 5th 2011. Apple sell you a load of overpriced junk which you really don’t need. I mean, Apple watches? The same goes for all the other companies selling you the same tripe.

But the official blurb for the movie states: “His passion and ingenuity have been the driving force behind the digital age. However his drive to revolutionize technology was sacrificial. Ultimately it affected his family life and possibly his health. In this revealing film we explore the trials and triumphs of a modern day genius, the late CEO of Apple inc. Steven Paul Jobs.”

And who’s playing him? Michael Fassbender, with other cast members including Kate Winslet, Sarah Snook, Jeff Daniels and Seth Rogen as Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. The film is directed by Danny Boyle.

I’ve never bought an Apple product as I’m an Android fan, but I’m curious to see how this all pans out, even though it seems to be tanking in the US.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

The Hallow is a new British film, originally titled The Woods, about a family who move into a remote milllhouse in Ireland find themselves in a fight for survival with demonic creatures living in the woods.

The cast is led by Joseph Mawle (Kill Your Friends, Ripper Street), Bojana Novakovic (A Funny Kind Of Love), plus Michael McElhatton, Gary Lydon, Stuart Graham, and one of my favourite actors, Michael Smiley, who’s been in everything from Doctor Who: Into The Dalek, The Lobster, The World’s End, Svengali, the first episode of Utopia, plus Spaced as the one-and-only Tyres, Shaun Of The Dead as Tyres the zombie! Oh, and also the superb A Field In England.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Hit!

Closer To The Moon

Bucharest 1959. A spectacular Bank heist has the country in an uproar. In post-war Communist Romania it is an unimaginable slap in the face to the iron fisted authorities. Four men and a woman are arrested, tried, convicted and while waiting for their execution… are forced to star in a propaganda film about the crime. All five protagonists were heroes of the resistance during the Second World War and highly placed members of Romanian society. They clearly knew they would be caught and executed.

Despite a decent cast including Vera Farmiga, Mark Strong, Harry Lloyd and Christian McKay, this looks like it could go either way.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Maybe!

Fathers and Daughters is about a A Pulitzer-winning writer who grapples with being a widower and father after a mental breakdown, while, 27 years later, his grown daughter struggles to forge connections of her own.

The film stars Amanda Seyfried, Aaron Paul, Russell Crowe, Diane Kruger, Jane Fonda, Michelle Veintimilla, Quvenzhané Wallis, Octavia Spencer, Bruce Greenwood and Janet McTeer, but quite frankly, I found this as boring as the title suggested.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!

A Christmas Star

Born under the Christmas Star, Noelle believes she has the gift to perform miracles, so when conniving developer McKerrod threatens her peaceful life she and her friends determine to use this gift to thwart his plans and save their village.

However, while the cast list includes well-known names like Suranne Jones, Pierce Brosnan, Liam Neeson and Kylie Minogue, appearing as herself, they’re just shoved in towards the end of the list so I bet they don’t have too much to do in this kids film.

Hit or Miss? Verdict: Miss!