7 brilliant must-watch films coming out in cinema and streaming this week
Music, mystery and Minions! There’s plenty of variety on offer for film lovers this week, both on the big screen and small. Happy viewing!
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Elvis (buy/rent on all major platforms)
Baz Lurhmann - the film-maker behind Moulin Rouge!, Romeo & Juliet and The Great Gatsby to name a few - is certainly a one-off, so it’s no surprise that his take on the Presley story is told in a way only he could get away with: theatrical, frenzied and sparkling like one of The King’s famous jumpsuits.
Purists might shudder at the electrifying soundtrack - boldly mixing Elvis with hip-hop, amongst other things - but this biopic reminds us how Elvis was a musical magpie, drawing from numerous styles and mixing it with his own style. It’s a job that relative unknown Austin Butler, as Elvis, more than manages (throwing in some sensationally sexy moves along the way). Co-starring Tom Hanks - under a lot of prosthetics - as Presley’s rather dubious manager Colonel Tom Parker.
WATCH: Have you watched Elvis yet?
The Princess (Sky Documentaries)
Billed as ‘the definitive’ examination of the late Diana’s life, The Princess expertly uses only archive footage to tell the story of her journey from nursery school teacher to the most famous woman in the world. And it’s a journey with many bumps in the road, as we know. But what The Princess reminds us via cleverly chosen clips is that, through it all, Diana remained poised and (at least outwardly) calm. Her world might have been collapsing around her but she was never anything but regal.
Minions: The Rise of Gru (rent on all major platforms)
We’ve hardly been lacking Minions content over the last few years but this fifth entry in the Despicable Me franchise still manages to be effortlessly funny and breezily entertaining. The story is a prequel, with an 11-year-old Gru (again voiced by Steve Carell) making his plans to become a supervillain with the help of his Minions. And whilst Carell always deserves plenty of love, it’s really those little yellow, banana-loving sidekicks who once again steal the show. Long may they continue.
Father Stu (buy/rent on all major platforms)
Mark Wahlberg’s latest was all but overlooked when it hit cinemas earlier this year but despite some occasionally clunky philosophising, it’s worth a look. The story is a true one: Stuart Long (Wahlberg) was a messed-up amateur boxer who went from trying to impress a beautiful Sunday School teacher with his charm to realising his calling in life was actually to be a Catholic priest. That’s quite the U-turn. Luckily Wahlberg throws himself into the role, relishing the story of grit and determination, and making what might have been cheesy into something undeniably inspiring.
My Old School (cinemas)
Prepare for some serious jaw-dropping as you watch this true story of high school student Brandon Lee, a teenager who enrolled at Bears Den Academy on the outskirts of Glasgow in the mid-90s. So far, so normal. But Brandon’s complex background and unusual looks were also hiding a major secret. Using interviews with former pupils, wonderfully retro animation plus the actor Alan Cumming appearing in the place of a camera-shy Brandon, this is a haunting yet always entertaining real-life mystery. Exceptional.
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Not Okay (Disney+)
Zoey Deutch continues her climb up the Hollywood ladder with another film that showcases her exceptional comedy skills. She plays Danni, a young woman eager to make it as a social media influencer who discovers that an online misunderstanding might just give her the life she dreams of. But how to keep up the lie? The jokes are certainly warped but Deutch’s ability to balance anxiety, desperation and laughs is seriously impressive. Co-starring Dylan O’Brien.
Jackass Forever (Sky Cinema)
It might be twenty years since the first Jackass film but not much in the world of the notoriously dumb daredevils has changed. Maybe not all the original cast still feature and the ones that do look a little worse for wear (who wouldn’t, considering what they’ve put themselves through?!) But the format of this fourth Jackass compilation remains reassuringly similar to the others: Johnny Knoxville, Steve O, Wee Man and the team (now including - shock horror! - some women too) crack themselves up doing stupid and dangerous things. Is it Shakespeare? Of course not. But it’s still very funny.
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