Stephen Patrick Morrissey broke into the Manchester music scene in the 1980s and through his time as the frontman of seminal band The Smiths as well as a lengthy solo career, he has grown to become an icon of British indie culture. Director Mark Gill brings a portion of his story to the big screen with coming-of-age drama England is Mine, which sees rising star Jack Lowden play a young Morrissey as he struggles to find his creative voice. After succumbing to the 9-to-5 rat race to work at the Inland Revenue, he meets local artist Linder Sterling (Jessica Brown Findlay) at a gig and becomes inspired to follow his passion.
Comedy is arguably the most subjective of all the film genres and can be tricky to get right at the best of times. Mix that with horror and it is even more of a challenge, which is exactly what filmmaker Benjamin Barfoot has embarked upon with his directorial debut Double Date. The plot follows hapless sap Jim (Danny Morgan) who, with the assistance of cocky pal Alex (Michael Socha) as his loyal wingman, hopes to lose his virginity before his 30th birthday. Their path crosses with sisters Kitty (Kelly Wenham) and Lulu (Georgia Groome), who have a dark ulterior motive.
Summer blockbuster season is upon us with an upcoming superhero movie and a couple of war epics on the horizon. Here are my picks for the best films to see this month!
War of the Planet of the Apes
Following on from the Rise and the Dawn, the final part of the 21st century Apes trilogy sees Caesar (Andy Serkis) and his army go to war with the human race, the opposition fronted by The Colonel (Woody Harrelson).
Song to Song
“Song to Song is a beautifully captured cinematic setlist like little else you will see on the big screen all year”.
Read my full review of Terrence Malick’s new romantic drama here!
Spidey has been rebooted again with Tom Holland as the new fresh faced Peter Parker! After a brief cameo in Marvel’s Civil War movie, he has his stand-alone film.
Christopher Nolan is back to direct World War II epic Dunkirk, the true story of the evacuation of Allied soldiers from the beaches of France in 1940. As he always does, he’s pulled together an all-star cast including frequent collaborators Cillian Murphy and Tom Hardy, as well as Mark Rylance, Kenneth Branagh and Harry Styles.
Sofia Coppola directs the remake of The Beguiled, a western drama set during the American Civil War. She won the Best Director award for the movie at Cannes earlier this year, and the film boasts an impressive cast including Nicole Kidman, Colin Farrell and Elle Fanning.
Some directors can attract A-listers thanks to their previous collaborations, their industry reputation or by the way in which they make films. The acclaimed yet divisive Terrence Malick falls into this category and has pulled together Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara, Michael Fassbender and Natalie Portman to make up possibly the most star-studded cast in recent memory. His latest feature is romantic drama Song to Song, which unfolds against the backdrop of the music scene in Austin, Texas. At the centre of it all is Faye (Mara), a rising musician who embarks on a relationship with fellow performer BV (Gosling) but who is also seeing his manipulative producer Cook (Fassbender); hence a complicated love triangle ensues.
When filmmakers possess a signature style that can be identified across their body of work, they are sometimes referred to as an auteur of cinema. It’s a term that might get banded around too frequently, but one that is often used when discussing Icelandic visionary Baltasar Kormákur. His latest feature is crime thriller The Oath, a personal project which he amazingly produces, directs, co-writes and stars in. The story follows family man heart surgeon Finnur (Kormákur) who tries to rescue his daughter Anna (Hera Hilmar) from her thuggish boyfriend Óttar (Gísli Örn Garðarsson) when she becomes entangled in his dangerous, criminal lifestyle.
Cary Grant is very fondly remembered as a Hollywood icon but documentary filmmaker Mark Kidel scrapes away the Hollywood glitz and gloss to explore the man behind the movie star in Becoming Cary Grant. Adapted from an unpublished autobiography, we hear Grant’s fascinating story in his own words, with actor Jonathan Pryce reading excerpts to provide an enjoyable voice-over.