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Author: Freda Cooper

Film Review: Den Of Thieves

Reviewed by Freda Cooper

There are two Gerard Butler films around at the moment. One sees him explaining Scottish slang. The other is Den Of Thieves.

This is a movie that’s bursting to be something else. With its chases and gunfire, it fancies itself as the DeNiro/Pacino face-off, Heat (1995), but its ambitions don’t stop there. It also sees itself as something of a Sicario (2015), especially when a gun battle takes place in a queue of stationery traffic. But most of all, it really wants to be an updated The Usual Suspects (1995).

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Film Review: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

Reviewed by Freda Cooper

It was only a matter of time. One of the brothers McDonagh had to hit the jackpot. Big brother John Michael had made The Guard, Calvary and, more latterly, War On Everyone. Martin had In Bruges and Seven Psychopaths under his belt. And now he brings Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri to the screen – the most cumbersome of titles for a film which is the complete opposite.

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Film Review: All The Money In The World

Reviewed by Freda Cooper

Only two months ago, a large question mark hung over the fate of Ridley Scott’s All The Money In The World. We all know why and we all know what happened next. Rather than have his film shelved, the director reverted to his original choice of Christopher Plummer to play billionaire J Paul Getty and re-shot his scenes in just six weeks.

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Most Anticipated Movies of 2018

By Freda Cooper

So that was 2017, the year when horror became the genre of choice and broke a few boundaries into the bargain. When every month had at least one blockbuster, or a superhero movie – or both. When some superheroes weren’t exactly super. And when fan backlashes became the norm, from La La Land to The Last Jedi.

But, most importantly of all, people still kept going to the movies. Because, despite the inevitable flops and disappointments, as well as the more serious, longer term issues, it was a pretty good year as far as the films themselves were concerned. Those of us that write about cinema have had one hell of a job compiling our top tens – even top twenties – this year, because there were so many contenders.

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Film Review: Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle

Reviewed by Freda Cooper

The word Jumanji immediately conjures up misty eyed memories of the 1995 family comedy starring Robin Williams and a young Kirsten Dunst. With a magical board game at its heart, it boasted some special effects that weren’t just impressive for their day, they also stand up surprisingly well now. 22 years later, we have an updated version for today’s generation, in theory a standalone, but who knows?

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Film Review: Brigsby Bear

Reviewed By Freda Cooper

If you ever obsessed over a TV series as a kid, then you’ll have more than a little sympathy for James (Kyle Mooney) in Brigsby Bear.

He’s grown up with Brigsby Bear Adventures, a weekly show about a loveable teddy in outer space, part fun, part education. He knows every plot line down to the minutest detail, can recite chunks of dialogue and his bedroom is full of Brigsby memorabilia. Yet it’s hard to work out why he’s so fascinated. The show is so primitive, it looks home made. That’s because it is. And James is 27.

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Film Review: Kingsman:The Golden Circle

After the more recent incarnations of 007, James Bond fans must be mourning the loss of the once-compulsory gadgets. The good news is that they’ve not gone away, they’ve just been moved elsewhere. To another franchise that treats them with even less reverence.

They’re now housed among a group of spies masquerading as an upper class gentleman’s outfitters, who made their first appearance a couple of years ago in Kingsman:The Secret Service. A title with everything you need to know. Its follow-up, Kingsman:The Golden Circle, has a more cryptic name, but the idea is still very much the same. In fact, even more of the same.

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Film Review: Dunkirk

In the early summer of 1940, 400,000 British and Allied troops are stuck on the beach at Dunkirk.  While they await rescue from the British Navy, the town is being littered with leaflets, reminding the locals and the soldiers that they’re surrounded.  The situation looks – and is – hopeless.

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Spider-Man Homecoming

Our expectations of the latest incarnation of the web-slinger have been pumped and primed since his cameo in last year’s Captain America: Civil War.  The teenage Spidey/Peter Parker nearly stole the entire film from under the more experienced noses of Robert Downey Junior and Chris Evans, with his youthful exuberance, cheekiness – and inability to cope with his new found super powers.

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