The Greatest Showman

A show that shoots for the stars, but hits the moon.

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P.T Barnum has an extraordinary need for greatness, but a not so extraordinary bank balance to match. What starts as a naive passion project soon escalates into one of the greatest shows in the world, as Barnum rallies the most unlikely of troops to put on a truly unique show.

With Hugh Jackman sitting front and center at the helm of this film as B.T. Barnum, and an equally impressive cast of supporting actors, from Zac Efron to Michelle Williams, this film certainly provides the talent to back this infamously impactful story of inequality and ambition.

Director Michael Gracey provides a backdrop that relishes the acting talent, as all components of this heartfelt and authentic film culminate to create a visionary dream that envisages a world without judgment, with music at its very core.

 

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Stars Wars: The Last Jedi

‘We are the spark, that will light the fire that’ll burn the first order down’

-Poe Dameron-

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As the Star Wars saga grows with unequaled velocity, George Lucas finds a way to keep the ever impending doom at a distance that keeps audiences far and wide coming back for more galactic-fuelled excitement.

Death and destruction face the last of the rebel alliance in Lucas Film’s latest installment as Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) must both find their balance in determining the force to fulfill their destiny.

As per usual, the special effects on offer throughout the film, leave little to the imagination, as the audience are engulfed in all things space, from a near-miss fighter jet crash to phenomenal close-ups of the Millennium Falcone.

Though many new faces make a debut, many old come to an end, as this film marks the beginning of the end for the original star wars cast, whose teachings are graciously passed on to the new generation of rebels.

‘The Last Jedi’ not only gives hope for the future of this all-consuming franchise but gives audiences a story to fall back in love with all over again, courtesy of director Rian Johnson, who puts the ‘war’ back into ‘Star Wars’.

 

Wonder

Life is a tough enough battle to fight as it is, but it becomes an uphill battle when societies concept of normalcy is comprised.

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August Pullman (Jacob Tremblay), is, in all other aspects of his life, a perfectly ‘normal’ 10-year-old boy, except for one small insignificant aspect; he doesn’t exactly look normal. Since his inception into this world, August has battled with a rare genetic disorder which resulted in facial abnormalities.

The film takes on Augusts’ struggles as he navigates his way through Middle School, and tackles unforgiving hardships on his way to igniting friendships.

Straight from the pages of R.J. Palacio’s book ‘Wonder’, director, Stephen Chbosky, doesn’t shy away from the unrelenting sadness of the storyline, but instead embraces it with both hands, showing August’s life as he retreats into the shadows and braves the light.

With Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson taking the lead roles as August’s parents, the film is able to create a feeling of deep empathy that reverberates through the audience and hits the pit of one’s heart, as the realization of impact for August’s family is nothing short of devastatingly beautiful.

This film is not only an important discovery for the unrealistic expectations of Hollywood cinema, but also provides an unwavering glimpse into societal perceptions, which are as far from accepting as can be.

Justice League

Teamwork makes the dream work; especially when saving the world.

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Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Cyborg, the Flash (and maybe Superman) take on a villain that’s out of this (literally), in a fight that’s sure to go down in some sort of superhero history book somewhere.

Though the CGI is horrendous and at times the acting is just as unbelievable, the storyline is filled with action-induced excitement and puts the DC franchise on the right track for eventually catching up to Marvel Mania.

The true hero of this story, however, is Ezra Miller’s performance as the Flash, which is by far the most entertaining aspect of the film, giving a mere glimpse of what the 2020 Flash film has in store for us.

Murder on the Orient Express

Kenneth Branagh conducts this investigative wonder, steamrolling its way into our hearts.

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Hercule Poirot is a detective like no other, and this case is proving hard to crack, as he finds himself stranded upon the orient express amongst thirteen suspects and one very gruesome murder.

The location of filming throughout this films entirety is nothing short of spectacular, with every aspect of 1930s Europe being crafted with immaculate precision, making the cinematography a marvel to behold.

Unfortunately the same cannot be said for the worryingly long running time, which is corrupted with false endings throughout, confusing the audience’s senses as they try to grapple with the senseless accusations.

Though with a cast as acclaimed as this, the script manages to claw its way back by shining the light on the countless number of talented actors, from Josh Gad to Dame Judi Dench, making this film a bearable pleasure.

Thor: Ragnarok

Hammerless, yet unabashed; Thor’s always up for a challenge.

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As fire threatens to engulf Asgard, Thor and a band of hero’s, comprising off Hulk, Loki and a long lost Asgardian must come to its aid.

A third film about the God of Thunder may have seemed a little much for many fans, but Marvel Studios have once again pulled off the impossible to create a wondrous display of heroic camaraderie.

The film unites the most unlikely characters, by fusing a bond of acting chemistry between Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Tom Hiddleston (Loki) and Mark Ruffalo (Hulk), with a little bit of added girl power from Tessa Thompson (Valkyrie).

With a talented pool of actors such as these and a whole host of bonus characters that are sure to give you a giggle, the film enthrals in its execution.

The Snowman

A chilly start to a snowballing crime sees Michael Fassbender pursue a carrot-nosed villain.

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Infamous detective, Harry Hole (Fassbender), must strike up a work-life balance before he loses everything. What starts out as a harmless homicide investigation soon escalates into a matter of personal revenge, with Harry becoming the target.

The film had enormous potential to be one of the most hard-hitting crime dramas in years, but unfortunately, the lacklustre script left the overwhelmingly talented cast pining for a bigger challenge. At every turn, this film had the ability to stun, but, director Thomas Alfredson, disappointed with a culmination of scenes that merged into one another without much hope of climax.

Whatsmore is the lack of explanation as to why a story set in Oslo,  Norway has all-English speaking characters. Though clearly done in order to heighten accessibility in the cinematic universe, it does create confusion for audiences who are not familiar with the Jo Nesbo book on which this film is based, and simply adds to the overall uninspired finish of the film.