Now showing at Ryedale Palace Chancery Lane,Malton,North Yorkshire YO17 7HW 01653 698899
- Fantastic Four
- Inside Out
- The Choir
- True Story
Ant-Man 4 stars
Cat burglar Scott Lang is released from San Quentin Penitentiary and resolves to go straight for the sake of his daughter. Inventor Dr Hank Pym invites Scott to don a superhero outfit, which shrinks the wearer at the touch of a button. Aided by Hank's feisty daughter, Scott masters the suit and learns to mind-control four species of ants. Humans and insects take on Hank's former protege, Darren Cross, who intends to sell the Ant-Man technology to the highest bidder.
- GenreAction, Adaptation, Adventure, Romance, Science Fiction
- CastEvangeline Lilly, Hayley Atwell, Paul Rudd, Bobby Cannavale, Judy Greer, Michael Douglas.
- DirectorPeyton Reed.
- WriterJoe Cornish, Edgar Wright, Paul Rudd, Adam McKay.
- Duration117 mins
- Official sitewww.marvel.com/antman
Although its ambitions are grander than the incredible shrinking hero of the title, the latest franchise in the cluttered Marvel Comic universe is refreshingly modest compared to the computer-generated bombast of The Avengers. The script, initially penned by Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish, and was then revised by Adam McKay and Paul Rudd when Peyton Reed replaced Wright in the director's chair, leans heavily on deadpan humour.
That changing of the filmmaking guard in 2014 hasn't negatively impacted on Ant-Man. Reed's boisterous action adventure is anchored by a winning lead performance from Rudd, who made his mark as Phoebe's boyfriend in the sitcom Friends. Here, the actor flexes his comic muscles as well as his abs and pecs, which are flaunted in an obligatory scene of toplessness to prove he hit the gym for the role.
When Rudd's unlikely hero is invited to become Ant-Man and save the world, his considered response is: "I think our first move should be calling The Avengers." Sensible.
Cat burglar Scott Lang (Rudd) is released from San Quentin Penitentiary and resolves to go straight for the sake of his daughter Cassie (Abby Ryder Fortson). He shares an apartment with former cellmate Luis (Michael Pena) but struggles to find gainful employment. Desperate to pay child support to his despairing ex-wife (Judy Greer), Scott agrees to one lucrative heist set up by Luis and two pals (David Dastmalchian, Tip "T.I." Harris).
Unfortunately, the robbery lands Scott in a police cell, under the glare of Maggie's new beau, Detective Paxton (Bobby Cannavale). Inventor Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) offers Scott a way out if he agrees to don a superhero outfit, which shrinks the wearer at the touch of a button.
Aided by Hank's feisty daughter (Evangeline Lilly), Scott masters the suit and learns to mind-control four species of ants. Humans and insects take on Hank's former protege, Darren Cross (Corey Stoll), who has replicated the Ant-Man technology for his Yellowjacket suit, which he intends to sell to the highest bidder: Hydra.
Ant-Man mines a rich vein of humour to underscore the high-speed acrobatics. The 3D format is only noticeable when Scott activates the suit and seemingly benign household features, like a running tap, become life-or-death obstacles a la Honey I Shrunk The Kids.
Director Reed has great fun juxtaposing perspectives, especially in a showdown on a child's train set that is thrilling close-up, with carriages crashing off tracks, but laughably pedestrian when witnessed actual size.
Rudd invests his reformed do-gooder with charm and chutzpah, and Douglas and Lilly provide solid support as the feuding father-daughter dynamic destined for reconciliation. "This isn't some cute technology like the Iron Man suit," Hank tells Scott about his invention. Perhaps not, but this first salvo of Ant-Man is almost as entertaining.
Fantastic Four 3 stars
Reed Richards is an inquisitive scientist, who has conducted experiments since his schooldays, which he hopes will reveal the secrets of the universe. Accompanied by Sue Storm, her hot-headed brother Johnny and loyal friend Ben Grimm, Reed teleports to an alternate universe where all four friends are blessed with startling new abilities. The friends vow to use their extraordinary talents for the good of mankind but they meet their match in megalomaniac Victor von Doom (Toby Kebbell).
- GenreAction, Adaptation, Adventure, Fantasy, Romance, Science Fiction
- CastMiles Teller, Kate Mara, Michael B Jordan, Jamie Bell, Toby Kebbell.
- DirectorJosh Trank.
- WriterJeremy Slater, Simon Kinberg, Josh Trank.
- Duration106 mins
- Official sitewww.fantasticfourmovie.co.uk
Josh Trank, who directed the 2012 sci-fi fantasy Chronicle, attempts to reboot the Marvel Comic franchise with a younger cast headlining this action-packed blockbuster. Reed Richards (Miles Teller) is an inquisitive scientist, who has conducted experiments since his schooldays, which he hopes will reveal the secrets of the universe. Accompanied by Sue Storm (Kate Mara), her hot-headed brother Johnny (Michael B Jordan) and loyal friend Ben Grimm (Jamie Bell), Reed teleports to an alternate universe where all four friends are blessed with startling new abilities. Reed discovers he can stretch his human form to outrageous lengths and becomes Mr Fantastic, while Sue learns how to become invisible and create force fields. Johnny sets himself ablaze and takes flight as The Human Torch, and Ben develops stone body armour that allows him to perform feats of incredible strength as The Thing. The four friends vow to use their extraordinary talents for the whole of mankind but they meet their match in megalomaniac computer scientist Victor von Doom (Toby Kebbell).
Showtimes (Click time to book tickets)
- Thursday 6th August 2015
Inside Out 5 stars
From the moment baby Riley opens her eyes, her mood is shaped by five coloured emotions - Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger and Disgust - which bicker behind a large control desk laden with buttons and levers. Joy is the dominant emotion in Headquarters and she safeguards Riley's memories, which are stored as glowing orbs. When Riley turns 11, her parents relocate from Minnesota to San Francisco. Traumatic events such as a first day at a new school nudge Sadness to the fore.
- GenreAnimation/Cartoon, Comedy, Family, Family
- CastDiane Lane, Amy Poehler, Kyle MacLachlan, Bill Hader, Phyllis Smith, Lewis Black, Mindy Kaling.
- DirectorPete Docter, Ronaldo Del Carmen.
- WriterPete Docter, Meg LeFauve, Josh Cooley.
- Duration102 mins
- Official sitewww.movies.disney.com/inside-out
Despite gargantuan advances in medical science, we still don't fully understand the complexities of the human brain: its ability to process vast quantities of information, solve problems and store memories at speeds that put supercomputers to shame.
Pixar Animation Studios, the wizards who conjured the Toy Story trilogy, contemplate the vagaries of neuropsychology with this visually stunning and emotionally rich comedy, which unfolds predominantly inside the head of a little girl.
This high-brow concept doesn't seem like the most accessible subject matter for a family-oriented computer animation. But directors Pete Docter and Ronaldo Del Carmen elegantly tilt their film at the windmills of the mind and deliver a hilarious, heartfelt and ultimately life-affirming adventure that celebrates childhood innocence, family unity and the power of the human spirit to overcome adversity.
Laughter and tears abound, as well as cute visual gags, ensuring parents will be repeatedly dabbing their eyes while children whoop and gurgle with glee at the slapstick and rollicking action sequences.
A mother (voiced by Diane Lane) and father (Kyle MacLachlan) welcome a baby girl called Riley (Kaitlyn Dias) into the world. From the moment she opens her eyes, Riley's mood is shaped by five coloured emotions - golden Joy (Amy Poehler), blue Sadness (Phyllis Smith), purple Fear (Bill Hader), red Anger (Lewis Black) and green Disgust (Mindy Kaling) - which bicker behind a large control desk laden with buttons and levers.
Joy is the dominant emotion in Headquarters and she safeguards Riley's memories, which are stored as glowing orbs, tinged with the colour of the emotion that prevailed at the time. When Riley turns 11, her parents relocate from Minnesota to San Francisco.
Traumatic events such as a first day at a new school nudge Sadness to the fore. Following an altercation, sworn rivals Joy and Sadness are expelled from Headquarters and find themselves stranded in the labyrinth of Riley's long-term memories.
Aided by Riley's imaginary friend Bing Bong (Richard Kind), Joy and Sadness blaze a haphazard trail on the chugging train of thought back to Fear, Anger and Disgust, who have been left in charge of Headquarters, with disastrous consequences.
Inside Out is Pixar's best film since the holy animated trilogy of WALL-E, Up and Toy Story 3. Docter's script, co-written by Meg LeFauve and Josh Cooley, glisters with imagination, wit and invention, delivering guffaws with detours into the heads of Riley's parents as they attempt to deal with her pre-teenage rebellion.
Vocal performances are note perfect, led by Poehler's exuberant portrayal of Joy and Smith's sincere embodiment of Sadness, who tugs heartstrings as the film reaches its exquisite conclusion.
The film is preceded by a short: a musical love story entitled Lava between two volcanoes called Uku and Lele, directed by James Ford Murphy. Joy and Sadness shared blissful control of my mind throughout.
Minions 3 stars
Since the dawn of time, the Minions have gravitated towards the most despicable master they can find. One Minion named Kevin embarks on an epic quest to find a new evil boss for his brethren to follow. Flanked by teenage rebel Stuart and diminutive scaredy-cat Bob, Kevin leaves the Minions' current home in Antarctica bound for 1968 New York City, where he stumbles upon the world's first female super-villain: Scarlet Overkill.
- GenreAnimation/Cartoon, Comedy, Family, Family
- CastChris Renaud, Sandra Bullock, Pierre Coffin, Steve Coogan, Allison Janney, Michael Keaton, Katy Mixon, Jon Hamm.
- DirectorPierre Coffin, Kyle Balda.
- WriterBrian Lynch.
- Duration91 mins
- Official sitewww.minionnation.co.uk
You can have too much of a good thing. In small doses, Despicable Me's goggle-eyed hench-creatures are a deranged delight. As unwittingly heroes of their own big screen adventure, these pint-sized "knights in shining denim" lose some of their loopy lustre, hindered by Brian Lynch's flimsy script, which is disappointingly light on storyline and belly laughs.
A dazzling vocal cast of gifted comic actors is repeatedly short-changed. Very young children, who gurgle with glee at the Minions' bonkers vernacular combining Esperanto and gobbledygook, will adore the slapstick, pratfalls and the tiniest member of the Minions clan, Bob, who clutches a well-loved teddy bear called Tim.
Adults will be considerably harder to win over. The lack of a coherent storyline grates as much as the lazy cultural stereotyping of the British as tea-sipping, corgi-riding folk, who frequent pubs called The Pig's Spleen.
Since the dawn of time, Minions have gravitated towards despicable masters including Tyrannosaurus Rex, Count Dracula and Napoleon. Unfortunately, these masters die prematurely - at the hands of the clumsy, yellow hench-creatures - leaving the Minions in a state of deep depression.
One brave soul named Kevin steps forth to find an evil boss for his bald, jaundiced brethren. Flanked by Stuart and scaredy-cat Bob, Kevin leaves the Minions' ice cave retreat bound for 1968 New York City. Cue a President Richard Nixon billboard proclaiming "Finally: a name you can trust". Could the Minions have stumbled upon their arch-villain?
No. The plucky trio learns about a gathering of criminals in Orlando and hitches a ride to the convention with a bank-robbing family led by Walter Nelson (voiced by Michael Keaton) and wife Madge (Allison Janney).
Their daughter Tina (Katy Mixon) points the Minions in the direction of bouffant super-villain Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock). "If I was a minion, that's who I'd want to work for," she swoons. Thus the trio pledges allegiance to Scarlet and her inventor husband Herb (Jon Hamm), who are plotting to steal the Crown Jewels from Queen Elizabeth II (Jennifer Saunders).
While the soundtrack swings its flares to The Kinks and The Who, Kevin, Stuart and Bob careen around London armed with Herb's nifty gadgets: a robo-suit, lava lamp gun and hypno-hat.
Minions has a sprinkling of giggles and doesn't outstay its welcome but there's an unshakable feeling that Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda's film falls short. The groovy time period should be a velvet goldmine of visual gags but the best the film can muster is a nod to The Beatles and a faked moon landing.
The 3D version doesn't exploit the eye-popping format so parents with tykes in tow should save their money for the inevitable raid on the concessions stand. Animation is colourful and pristine, opting for shiny surfaces and sharp angles that reduce the need for meticulous detail and realism. Despicable? Meh.
The Choir 3 stars
Eleven-year-old Stet is left to fend for himself when his alcoholic mother dies in a car accident. The boy's father has a new family so he packs off Stet to the National Boychoir Academy, where his singing voice can be honed by head conductor Carvelle and his assistants Drake and Wooly. With close guidance and nurturing from Carvelle, Stet embraces his natural gift and realises that he is not alone in the world after all.
- CastDustin Hoffman, Garrett Wareing, Eddie Izzard, Kevin McHale, Josh Lucas, Kathy Bates.
- DirectorFrancois Girard.
- WriterBen Ripley.
- Duration103 mins
- Official site
- Release10/07/2015 (selected cinemas)
An inspirational teacher attempts to coax a troubled boy out of his shell in this predictable yet heart-warming human drama directed by Francois Girard. Eleven-year-old Stet (Garrett Wareing) is left to fend for himself when his alcoholic mother dies in a car accident. The boy's father (Josh Lucas) has a new family and would prefer to hide wastrel Stet from the world so he agrees to pack off the youngster to the National Boychoir Academy, where Stet's singing voice can be honed by head conductor Carvelle (Dustin Hoffman) and his assistants Drake (Eddie Izzard) and Wooly (Kevin McHale). Stet struggles to fit into his regimented new surroundings and his flawless voice sparks a rivalry with one of the other boys. However, with close guidance and nurturing from Carvelle, Stet embraces his natural gift and realises that he is not alone in the world after all.
True Story 3 stars
Christian Longo, a man wanted for the murder of his wife and three children, is arrested by police in Mexico, posing as a respected New York reporter called Michael Finkel. When the real journalist learns about the case, he is intrigued and agrees to visit Christian in prison. The two men forge a strange bond during a series of conversations in which Christian reveals that he has always been a huge fan of Michael's work.
- GenreAdaptation, Drama, Thriller
- CastFelicity Jones, Jonah Hill, James Franco, Maria Dizzia.
- DirectorRupert Goold.
- WriterRupert Goold.
- Duration99 mins
- Official site
Based on Michael Finkel's memoir of the same name, True Story dramatises the real-life Faustian pact between a disgraced journalist and a charming husband, accused of murdering his entire family. The game of cat-and-mouse between these two unreliable narrators, who both distort the truth for personal gain, should light the fuse on verbal fireworks in writer-director Rupert Goold's sombre film.
Unfortunately, the script, co-written by David Kajganich, obscures our view of any pyrotechnics behind billowing smoke and mirrors, including a series of fractured dream-like reminiscences that reduce dramatic momentum to a crawl. "Sometimes the truth isn't believable. That doesn't mean it isn't true," coolly observes the accused.
It's a fair point but the absence of plausibility and verifiable facts makes for a frustrating viewing experience, compounded by the squandering of Oscar nominee Felicity Jones (The Theory Of Everything) in a thankless supporting role.
Celebrated New York Times reporter Michael Finkel (Jonah Hill) pens an incendiary feature about contemporary child slavery in the African chocolate trade. The article makes the cover of the newspaper's magazine but embarrassing evidence subsequently comes to light that Michael wilfully distorted the facts. "I said write it up, not make it up," seethes his editor (Gretchen Mol).
With an indelible stain on his reputation, Finkel returns shame-faced to snow-laden Montana and his wife Jill (Jones). Soon after, journalist Pat Frato (Ethan Suplee) from The Oregonian contacts Mike for a comment about the recent arrest of Christian Longo (James Franco), a man wanted for the murder of his wife and three children, in Mexico.
"When they apprehended him, he said he was Mike Finkel of The New York Times," explains Frato. Intrigued why Longo stole his identity, Finkel visits Christian behind bars and forges a strange bond with the accused. In exchange for writing lessons, Christian agrees to tell the reporter his version of events leading to the deaths of his wife MaryJane (Maria Dizzia) and offspring.
Finkel becomes dangerously fascinated, sensing a chance at redemption if he can exploit his privileged access to Christian for a best-selling book. "This is a once in a lifetime story!" gushes the writer to his increasingly concerned wife.
True Story is structured around several face-to-face encounters between the two protagonists. Hill plays his part with wide-eyed fascination while Franco remains slippery yet oddly engaging, teasing out some of the facets of Longo's narcissistic personality disorder.
Jones has just two emotionally resonant scenes of note, neither of which gel with the rest of the narrative and render her almost superfluous. Goold and co-writer Kajganich tread a careful path between legal record and litigious speculation that leaves too many key questions unanswered. In the hard fought battle for our hearts and suspicious minds, Goold's film fails to conquer either.