Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (Cinema Review)

12A – 137mins – 2017 – 3D


 

TEMPORAL SPACE AGENT

Based on Pierre Christin and Jean-Claude Mézières’ pulp comic book series Valérian and Laureline which lasted a monumental 44 years from 1966-2010, it is clear that acclaimed director Luc Besson sees this epic science fiction adaptation as his grandiose Avatar moment. Intricately designed and packed full of more CGI than all three Star Wars prequels combined, sadly this is less a return to his The Fifth Element success and more a John Carter-sized flop.

… Keep Scuttling!

Despicable Me 3 (Cinema Review)

U – 90mins – 2017 – 3D


 

GRU GONE GOOD

Happily married to Lucy (Kristen Ghostbusters Wiig) and living a respectable life as a father to his three adopted girls, former supervillain Gru (Steve Carell) is now a top agent for the Anti-Villain League. But when new blood takes over the AVL, Gru and Lucy find themselves thrown to the curb for failing to apprehend former child-star-turned-jewel-thief Balthazar Bratt (Trey Parker). Will reuniting with his long-lost twin brother, Dru (also Carell), see Gru back on a path to heroism, or will Dru coerce him to return to his shady past?

… Keep Scuttling!

The Brand New Testament (DVD Review)

15 – 110mins – 2015 – French with English Subtitles


 

GETTING EVEN WITH DAD

“God exists. He lives in Brussels.”

Accompanied by an eclectic soundtrack which aptly oscillates between grandiose ecclesiastic classical suites and absurdist circus music, this Golden Globe-nominated French language satire is as brilliantly brave and barmy as it is scathingly blasphemous.

… Keep Scuttling!

Things to Come (DVD Review)

Image result for things to come film

12 – 98mins – 2016


LØVE AND FRIENDSHIP

“I thought you’d love me forever. I’m a goddamn idiot.”

Released in its native France as L’Avenir, this naturalistic drama from young director Mia Hansen-Løve drew rave reviews and award success for its wry humanity and Isabelle Huppert’s performance as Nathalie Chazeaux, a philosophy teacher who amidst juggling her career, home live and looking after her depressed and ailing mother (Édith Scob), is left by her husband (André Marcon) for another woman.

… Keep Scuttling!

Le Talent De Mes Ami (DVD Review)


15 – 93mins – 2015


THANKS TO MY FRIENDS

An effervescent French comedy-drama about how easy it is to slip into a rut, waste your potential and unconsciously give up on your dreams. With flashes of quirky humour which bring to life the juvenile imaginings of 30-something best pals Alex (Alex Lutz) and Jeff (Tom Dingler), this has shades of the charming Amelie about it, but also more than a passing resemblance to the breezy air of (500) Days of Summer.

When Alex’s old childhood friend Thibault (Bruno Sanches) turns up at his dull multinational firm a handsome, successful, go-getting motivational speaker and life couch, Alex’s relaxed, seemingly-contented existence is thrown into confusion, as he questions his job, his life and his goals. But where does comfortable-yet-apathetic Jeff fit into his new plans?

You don’t always concur with Alex’s newfound, rash decision-making as he sets out to make a name for himself and be a star, but his journey is an interesting and genuine one – even if presented in such a light, irreverent way. You see relationships formed and fumbled, emotions rise and fall and success loom on the horizon.

While it is straight-guy Alex whose path we follow, Jeff is the stand-out character. A simple, cheeky chap who gets joy from simple things, his heartfelt epiphany in the closing stages is a real eye-opening – and mature – moment of clarity for the three divergent men. This is well worth your time, even if you leave the characters in much the same shape you found them – but such is life.

CR@B Verdict: 3 stars