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  • BlacKkKlansman

    BlacKkKlansman

    ★★★★

    In the early 1980’s, while studying at NYU film school, Spike Lee was almost expelled for daring to criticise D.W Griffith’s Birth of a Nation. After the film was screened to students, the director was appalled that instead of assessing the repugnant, pro-white supremacist message on the surface, he was being asked to overlook it in order to assess the revolutionary filmmaking techniques instead. When he made a short film (The Answer) satirising Birth of a Nation, about an African-American…

  • The Meg

    The Meg

    ★★★

    Before watching The Meg, it can be easy to worry whether the film will wink at the audience and indulge in a campy silliness, or play it completely straight, depriving the audience of easy laughs and attempt to mine something of worth from the trashy conceit. Either one of these scenarios can work out well, of course; but the worst examples of the former lead to films trying so hard to become "cult movies" they render themselves boring, while the…

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  • It Follows

    It Follows

    ★★★★

    With the blockbuster success of Fifty Shades of Grey in cinemas worldwide, many pundits are claiming that this marks a new era for “sex positive” movies- and much more importantly, the basic idea of a woman being as sexually open as her male counterparts not being a source of cinematic shame, but one of pride. It’s only been two decades since what I dub the “unofficial Michael Douglas misogyny trilogy” of Fatal Attraction, Basic Instinct and Disclosure hit cinemas, films…

  • Kong: Skull Island

    Kong: Skull Island

    ★½

    I have rarely seen a cinema audience as rowdy as the crowd at my screening of Kong: Skull Island yesterday evening. Roughly ten minutes in to the film, peaceful decorum in the auditorium seemed to be abolished, with audience interaction reaching a level usually associated with cult classics like The Rocky Horror Picture Show or The Room, not a preview screening of a would-be franchise starter.

    Here was a crowd actively hating a movie in real time, loudly questioning plot…