Jonathan Glazer’s perfectly crafted film is one of the most compelling of the year! His screenplay is loosely based on the novel by Martin Amis, which takes place in 1943 and follows the story of the commandant of Auschwitz, Rudolf Hoss (Christian Friedel) and his wife Hedwig (Sandra Huller). They live in an idyllic home with their five children next to the concentration camp and spend most of their carefree time swimming and fishing at the nearby river. Hedwig is busy looking after their beautiful garden while servants run around the spotless clean house. They are totally immune to what’s happening behind their garden wall – smoke is continuously coming out the furnace, screaming and cries for help can be heard but all these sounds fall on deaf ears…

It is a chilling film superbly designed and edited. The sound design by Johnie Burn is truly haunting and is perfectly complimented by Mica Levi’s remarkable score. Lukasz Zal’s striking cinematography highlights the clinical environment that surrounds the Hoss family, totally indifferent to any reality.

The performances are stunning – Friedel is superb as the cold-blooded commander, who casually discusses the design of a new crematorium with his officers as if he is asking the servants what’s for dinner tonight. Sandra Huller, the star of TONY ERMANN and ANATOMY OF A FALL, cements her reputation as one of the most exciting European actors working in cinema today. Do not miss!



Cord Jefferson’s intelligent and brilliant screenplay offers Jeffrey Wright his best part in ages. He plays Monk, an overconfident writer who still struggles to hit the big time. He refuses to write about racial stereotypes until Sintara Golden’s (Issa Rae) novel breaks records in the commercial world. He then reluctantly decides to write about the black experience but under a pseudonym…

Jefferson has assembled an excellent ensemble of actors, who relish his sharp, astute piece of writing. Wright is terrific as the self-obsessed writer, who refuses to take any advice from his agent, family, or friends and is well supported by Sterling K Brown as his irresponsible brother Clifford. Both are worthy of their Oscar nominations, but the film is also worth celebrating for the arrival of Cord Jefferson, who makes a remarkable directorial debut with his splendid adaptation of Percival Everett’s 2001 novel “Erasure”.



This is one of the best and most delightful, animated films I have seen for a while. Mike White, the creator of SCHOOL OF ROCK, lends his eccentric writing style for this lovely story of the Mallards – a family of ducks who want to leave their New England Pond and migrate to Jamaica. It is a long way and face many adventures along the way including an encounter with Erin, an old heron (Carol Kane), who at first is not clear whether she wants to eat or mother the ducklings. Later they fall into the hands of a fashionable New York chef who wants to include the ducks in his menu. “What’s duck a l’orange” innocently asks Gwen, the baby of the family. “It’s you with l’orange on top” the wounded but fearless pigeon Chump (Awkwafina) responds casually.

It is a beautiful film with a strong narrative and with many unexpected delights which are perfectly complimented by ace voice work. Give your family a treat and see this!



A terrific opening for Matthew Vaughn’s latest slick spy thriller – in typical James Bond fashion secret agent Argylle (Henry Cavill), escapes from an enemy trap and drives away spectacularly through the rooftops of a white coloured village on a Greek island. This sets up the tone most adequately of what’s to follow, before we meet Elly Conway (Bryce Dallas Howard, who, like the protagonist in ROMANCING THE STONE, is a successful novel writer.

Unlike her creation of Argylle in her fictional books, Elly is a shy, awkward woman who miraculously finds herself in the same predicament as that of her hero after an encounter on the train with Aidan (Sam Rockwell), a down to earth spy who hates cats…

I loved the first half of this slick and stylish adventure, but as the story develops the plot becomes even more preposterous by the minute, which makes it difficult to care much about the protagonist’s predicament.



Alberto Corredor’s hugely atmospheric, creepy horror was originally made into an award winning short. It was scripted by Lorcan Reilly, who now along with Marina Pamies and Bryce McGuire extend this ghost story into a full feature. When Iris (Freya Allan) inherits a run-down pub from her estranged father she flights to Berlin to identify his body. She struggles to make ends meet and she is happy to stay there and discuss the estate, but little does she know about the existence of Baghead – a shapeshifting creature hiding in the basement. Iris learns more about Baghead when a young man called Neil (Jeremy Irvine) pays her a lot of money to see the creature and ask her questions about his dead wife…

It is a genuinely chilly story superbly acted. Peter Mullan sets up the tone in the prologue as Iris father before his ghastly death. Freya Allan is a strong presence and so is Jeremy Irvine as the disturbed young man desperately needing answers about his wife’s fatal accident. Corredor expertly directs an intriguing horror with plenty of thrills and chills.



Michael Powell’s groundbreaking 1960 psychological horror-thriller was loathed at its initial release for its daring exploration of child abuse, sadomasochism and scopophilic fetishism. But since then thanks to Martin Scorsese the film has been reappraised and is now considered a masterpiece. The story follows Mark Lewis (Carl Boehm), a cameraman and a serial killer who murders woman while filming their dying expressions of fear…

Boehm is superb – his innocent presence and good looks make the audience care for him despite his vile actions. He is supported by a strong female cast that includes Anna Massey as Helen Stephens, Mark’s lovely neighbour who begins to fall for this lonely man and Maxine Audley as Mrs Stephens, Helen’s blind mother who senses that something is not entirely right with her charming neighbour. Moira Shearer is spellbinding as Vivian, the woman in the film studio who, like in RED SHOES, dances her way before tragedy strikes her.

This striking new 4K restoration is a must for your collection! (Blu-ray disc from StudioCanal)



Spanish director Lois Patino’s mystical film takes you on a journey that begins in a Buddhist temple in Laos. The story follows a group of young monks and a young man called Amid, who looks after a sick, dying woman. He reads to her from the Tibetan Book of the Dead and prepares her for the journey she is about to embark. Then, the action moves to Zanzibar and focuses on Juwairiya, a young girl living in a small community by the sea. She is thrilled when a baby goat is born and calls it Neema, which means blessing in Arabic…

Halfway through the film Patino invites you to close your eyes and feel the journey through light and sound. It a beautiful, calming experience about resurrection, regeneration and beyond.



Mstyslav Chernov along with a team of Ukrainian journalists from The Associated Press become key witnesses to the atrocities of the Russian invasion. They are trapped in the city of Mariupol, and they are the only connection to the outside world. Their harrowing images of dying children and of mass graves shocked the world.

It is a daring film that captures the horrors of war most powerfully and deserves every award going for its clarity and impact. When Russian ambassadors are asked to comment about the devastating effects of the siege, they ironically say “that everything is staged for the camera, and it is actors who portray the alleged victims.”

It is one of the most powerful and essential documentaries of recent times!


Any feedback is welcome: [email protected]

Leave a Reply