Unable to achieve ascension, Saint Maud (2020) finds a home in cinematic purgatory.

Unable to achieve ascension, Saint Maud (2020) finds a home in cinematic purgatory.

Rose Glass’ feature debut is a strikingly stark psychological horror, powered by two mesmeric central performances and a stylishly bleak aesthetic. Claustrophobic and intimate to the point of intrusive, it’s very well crafted and occasionally shocking but ultimately it doesn’t bring anything new to the sanctified vs psychosis trope that dwells malevolently at the heart ..

Greenland (2020) Review

Greenland (2020) Review

Famously Iceland is, for the most part, not covered in ice and snow whereas Greenland is almost entirely smothered by glaciers, its verdant name belying its frozen nature. In that, at least, GREENLAND (2020) is aptly named because for the most part, it’s a tense refugee drama masquerading as a disaster movie. When the interstellar ..

If you’ve seen one of the lead actors of Code 8 (2020), you’ve seen Amell.

If you’ve seen one of the lead actors of Code 8 (2020), you’ve seen Amell.

America’s favourite brand of flavourless beefcake (available in regular and extra dour) are the marquee names in this tediously grimdark superhero tale, co-written and directed by Jeff Chan and based on his crowdfunded short film of the same name released in 2016. Like the original short, this feature-length take is set in a world where ..

If the van’s a-rockin’, don’t be knockin’ Uncle Peckerhead (2020)

If the van’s a-rockin’, don’t be knockin’ Uncle Peckerhead (2020)

Available now on Sky Movies, “Uncle Peckerhead” may have a weird title and an even weirder premise but it surprises by being good, goofy, gory fun, with a pretty good soundtrack to boot (if punk is your thing). Looking to get their career going, up and coming punk band ‘Duh’ are heading out on the ..

The Personal History Of David Copperfield (2020) is a dazzling Dickensian delight.

The Personal History Of David Copperfield (2020) is a dazzling Dickensian delight.

Colourful, captivating and preposterously delightful, Armando Iannucci’s free-spirited adaptation of the Dickens novel brings a vibrant contemporary energy to the classic metronomic rags to riches to rags to riches tale. Chronicling his turbulent upbringing, the film begins with a quintessentially Dickensian framing device as David Copperfield (Dev Patel) narrates his own life story to a ..

The New Mutants (2020) makes the same old mistakes

The New Mutants (2020) makes the same old mistakes

Its eventual path to the big screen may have had a more convoluted timeline than even Christopher Nolan’s most unrestrained fever dream could have concocted for “Tenet”, but the question which dogs “The New Mutants” is ‘was it worth the wait?’ The answer – unsurprising for anyone who’s been watching the most recent “X-Men” movies ..

Apparently, Warner Bros has learned nothing from the DCEU debacle. Scoob! (2020) Review

Apparently, Warner Bros has learned nothing from the DCEU debacle. Scoob! (2020) Review

With an opening that feels like a separate, unrelated short rather than the beginning of a coherent story, not since Han solo’s ham-fisted nomenclature scene has the origin of a character’s name been no unnecessarily or stupidly brought to screen. Quite why Warners figured we needed ‘Scooby Begins’ is anyone guess but here we are. ..

Sky Sharks (2020) is a disappointment I did Nazi coming. #SharkWeak4🦈 Review

Sky Sharks (2020) is a disappointment I did Nazi coming. #SharkWeak4🦈 Review

Brought to you by four production companies who seemingly put more thought and effort into their studio idents than they did producing a good movie, SKY SHARKS not only promises more than it delivers, what it does put on screen is haphazard, unpleasant and – psychologically speaking – somewhat concerning. When a team of geologists ..

Charlize Theron and Kiki Layne prove there’s life in The Old Guard (2020) yet.

Charlize Theron and Kiki Layne prove there’s life in The Old Guard (2020) yet.

Netflix’s latest franchise starter initially does a good job of conveying the experiential tedium of immortality as it introduces us to a band of immortal warriors who have been making their way through history acting as soldiers of fortune but after a sluggish start, it manages to deliver a thrilling finale and sets the stage ..

The Invisible Man (2020) Review

The Invisible Man (2020) Review

A very 21st Century adaptation of H G Wells’ classic “The Invisible Man”, Leigh Whannel takes almost as many liberties with the source material as he does with logic in order to deliver a tense and oppressive thriller, a desire in which he largely succeeds. Having escaped from her wealthy and abusive boyfriend, optical technology ..

Netflix’s Animal Crackers (2020) is the perfect school holiday snack

Netflix’s Animal Crackers (2020) is the perfect school holiday snack

Netflix’s latest family-friendly offering is a movie which once again, unsurprisingly, has had a troubled path to the screen. Originally premiering at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival in 2017, it was due to be released first by Relativity Media, then Serafini Releasing and Entertainment Studios before eventually ending up with Netflix for a release ..

Skyfire (2020) Review

Skyfire (2020) Review

Skyfire blows its load disappointingly early SKYFIRE, the latest Chinese big-budget blockbuster to attempt to break out to mainstream Western success seems, initially, to have a lot going for it: a hybrid of JURASSIC WORLD and DANTE’S PEAK (with an opening scene lifted almost frame by frame from the 1996 Pierce Brosnan action-disaster movie), it ..

Smith and Lawrence roll back the years, if not the mileage in Bad Boys For Life (2020)

Smith and Lawrence roll back the years, if not the mileage in Bad Boys For Life (2020)

Having spent a decade (and the best part of a billion dollars) smashing whirling dervishes of tinfoil and glass against each other in the “Transformers” franchise, it’s easy to forget that Michael Bay’s directorial style was almost fully formed when he made his directorial debut with “Bad Boys”. Although he also directed its louder, brasher, ..

Project Power (2020) needed a slightly stronger dosage.

Project Power (2020) needed a slightly stronger dosage.

I’ve been playing a lot of “Infamous: Second Son” recently, which really put me in the right mindset to enjoy Netflix’s latest bid to kick-start a blockbuster movie franchise. Drawing inspiration from “X-Men”, “Limitless” and half-a-dozen other existing titles, “Project Power” plays its well-thumbed cards well, even if the deck is worn. In the near ..

The Sleepover (2020) offers us some familiar adventures in babysitting.

The Sleepover (2020) offers us some familiar adventures in babysitting.

There’s more than a whiff of ‘Disney Original Movie’ to Netflix’s latest offering, a family adventure caper which sees siblings Clancy and Kevin discover that their seemingly boring stay-at-home mum Margot is actually Mathilde, a former international jewel thief whose witness protection cover has been broken by her old gang. When Margot is blackmailed into ..

Once Upon A Snowman (2020) can’t dig its way out of a drift of unnecessariness

Once Upon A Snowman (2020) can’t dig its way out of a drift of unnecessariness

If, like me, you’d assumed that everything you might need to know about Olaf the snowman’s origins was relayed quite effectively in 2013’s “Frozen”, you’d be absolutely right. That hasn’t stopped Disney from pulling together “Once Upon A Snowman”, a wholly unoriginal original short which plays out like its made up from deleted and discarded ..

The Lego Star Wars Holiday Special (2020) Review

The Lego Star Wars Holiday Special (2020) Review

As someone who has endured the original “Star Wars Holiday Special” (on a VHS bootleg no less), I won’t deny I was at least wary of embracing another celebration of Life Day, albeit an ironic Lego one. It says something about the state the franchise was left in by “The Rise Of Skywalker” that it ..

Come Away (2020) Review

Come Away (2020) Review

Owing a little more, perhaps, to Charles Dickens and C S Lewis than J M Barrie or Lewis Carroll, “Come Away” may be rich in production values and period flourishes but whatever great expectations you may have are soon dashed by this muddled faux Dickensian fantasia. The story introduces us to the Littleton family, parents ..

Tenet (2020) struggles to establish its pledge, let alone deliver its prestige.

Tenet (2020) struggles to establish its pledge, let alone deliver its prestige.

Opening with the kind of crowded theatre scene that “Tenet” itself yearns to bring back to the world’s COVID-starved cinemas, Christopher Nolan’s latest high concept blockbuster sets out its mission statement right out of the gate with a relentlessly kinetic action sequence design to grab the auditorium by the throat. After barely surviving a dangerous ..

An American Pickle (2020) offers us a sweet and sour look at family.

An American Pickle (2020) offers us a sweet and sour look at family.

It is with a fine sense of historical irony that I note my first trip back into the cinema was to see a movie owned and distributed by a streaming service. Originally set to be released by Sony, it eventually fell to HBO Max to open the jar, springing for a theatrical release in overseas ..

Superintelligence (2020) Review

Superintelligence (2020) Review

For a shameless Tesla commercial masquerading as a movie featuring James Corden as a civilisation-threatening super-powerful A.I., “Superintelligence” isn’t anywhere near as bad as you may be expecting. Starring Melissa McCarthy and Bobby Cannavale, it’s a cinematic curiosity which seems almost deliberately designed to be cross-compatible with any genre you might want to apply to ..

Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga (2020) hits some of the right notes, but not necessarily in the right order.
The Witches (2020) Review

The Witches (2020) Review

It’s become something of a cliché recently to begin films – especially ones aimed at a family audience – with a car accident, robbing a character of one or more parents. “Dark Phoenix” did it. “Pete’s Dragon” did it. “Shazam!” sort of did it. Even “Frozen” did it, although they used a ship instead of ..

For a CGI nanotech superhero, Bloodshot (2020) is over-clocked and under-powered.

For a CGI nanotech superhero, Bloodshot (2020) is over-clocked and under-powered.

I always find myself rooting for Vin Diesel and want his movies to do well, for his sake if for no other reason. He’s always so deadly earnest and focused on them that criticizing them seems feels a little like bopping an over-enthusiastic puppy on the nose with a rolled-up newspaper. That being said, “Bloodshot” ..

Boss! Boss! De lame, it’s de lame! Fantasy Island (2020) Review

Boss! Boss! De lame, it’s de lame! Fantasy Island (2020) Review

A frothy, fantasy series from the late seventies/ early eighties may seem like an odd choice for a 2020 horror revival but when has that ever stopped Blumhouse, the McDonalds Of Horror™, from hoovering up an IP and then figuring it out afterwards. The result is a disappointingly underdeveloped, haphazard tales of the entirely expected ..