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  • Bad Times at the El Royale

    Bad Times at the El Royale

    ★★★★★

    This was perhaps the most fun I've had in the cinema all year. It's a very impressively constructed movie that keeps you guessing to the very end, and it represents a remarkable harmony of different elements - great acting by every lead, immersive production design, a whip-smart script, and a stunning soundtrack.

    Cynthia Erivo is absolutely remarkable as the talented singer Darlene Sweet, and turns in one of the best performances I've seen all year - she might be the…

  • Journey to a Mother's Room

    Journey to a Mother's Room

    ★★½

    This is a difficult one. I can recognise that this film is impressive in several ways - it knows the story it wants to tell (the adjustments that inevitably occur as a child leaves home for the first time, and how they are best resolved) and gets that story across effectively. The characters have clear arcs and their relationship develops in a beautiful and honest way. The performances are quiet but effective, and there were some charming moments of humour.…

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  • Jupiter Ascending

    Jupiter Ascending

    ★★★★★

    Gorgeous, imaginative, fascinating and fun in all the right ways, I love Jupiter Ascending to pieces. I adore the rich word and mythology the Wachowskis establish here, and find the characters likeable and sympathetic. The film, while obviously truncated from a longer version, reveals itself more fully with subsequent viewings, but is, more importantly, an incredibly exhilarating ride from the get-go. It's a modern-day Labyrinth or Wizard of Oz, and I'm amazed by the level of hate and vitriol directed at it. In short, I had more fun with Jupiter Ascending than I've had at the cinema in years.

  • Won't You Be My Neighbor?

    Won't You Be My Neighbor?

    ★★★★★

    The ultimate compliment to this movie is that I went in knowing nothing about Fred Rogers, and came out moved (almost, but not quite, to tears) and deeply impressed by his kindness and compassion. Fred Rogers was not a cultural export to ever reach UK shores, but I kind of wish he had. The Brit icons of childhood I knew growing up (think Rolf Harris and Jimmy Saville) have been outed as monstrous child abusers, and there was something incredibly…