Wonder Woman is a breath of fresh air for the DC Extended Universe

Well, that wasn’t so difficult – was it?

After a series of critical misfires, it seems Warner Bros. have finally figured out what was missing from their movie-making formula: fun.

Apart from her brief but winning appearance in Batman V Superman, this marks the long-overdue cinematic debut of perhaps the most iconic female superhero (who’s not somebody’s cousin that is). …

Hell or High Water, or: of consequences and Comanches

The West Texas portrayed in Hell or High Water is less No Country For Old Men than no country for anyone.

Based on a Black Listed screenplay by Taylor Sheridan – who also scripted Denis Villeneuve’s similarly sun-bleached Sicario – the generically titled Hell or High Water manages to escape from the long shadow of the Coen Brother’s 2007 Best Picture winner by introducing a vein of social commentary and lightness of touch without compromising the essential spareness and determinism that characterize the modern-day Western.…

Star Trek Beyond gets ahead by going back to basics

 

Space is no longer the final frontier in cinema. In fact it’s a bit passé.

Where’s Kubrick’s star-child once evoked the wonder of journeying into the unknown, science fiction has since placed its emphasis more on the inherent risks of interstellar travel.…

Z For Zachariah gets a B+ in the post-apocalypse stakes

 

Craig Zobel’s Z For Zachariah may have the same PG-13 age rating as the bloodless Terminator Genisys1, but there’s more to this adaptation of Robert C. O’Brien’s classic junior sci-fi than just The Road for kiddies.

While Cormac McCarthy’s famously grim work of fiction is structured around, well, the road, Z For Zachariah concerns staying put.…

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit fails to fully surface

 

Has ever a hero been rebooted as repeatedly and with little aplomb as Jack Ryan? From Sean Connery-starrer Hunt for the Red October back in 1990 through to the present day, Tom Clancy’s best-known protagonist has grossed more than half a billion dollars.…

Star Trek Into Darkness helps bring the franchise back into the light

We are living in the New Hollywood of pop culture.

Just as Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg and Stanley Kubrick grew up on a diet of Welles, Kazan and Hitchcock, the new generation of filmmakers – Abrams, Whedon, Nolan – were weaned on TV, sci-fi, fantasy and comic books: Star Wars was their Rashomon.…