Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Critical Week: No wallflower

As awards season heats up, the films screened to critics begin to feel more eclectic than usual. One higher-brow offering was Lady Macbeth, which I missed in the festival rounds last autumn. Florence Pugh stars as a woman who finds a rather grisly way to take control of her life in 19th century England. It's gruesome and clever. The Space Between Us is a romance between two teens in which a sci-fi plot point becomes little more than set dressing. It's a well-made film, but the script remains resolutely superficial.

On the extreme other end of the spectrum, The Lego Batman Movie is a frantic comedy that's very funny but also somewhat exhausting. From Romania, Graduation is a powerfully challenging drama that grapples with huge themes in a way that's sharp and resonant. And All This Panic is a loose, beautifully shot and edited documentary that feels like a narrative feature about a group of teen girls navigating crises that feel like the end of the world. To them at least.

I'm flying off to California for the next couple of weeks to visit family and friends. And I'll also catch up with some movies along the way, which I'll cover here. First on my list is John Wick Chapter 2, as I'm missing the big London press screening. I'll also be over there for Bafta on Sunday night, and perhaps more relevantly for Oscar two weeks later.

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