film reviews

current film reviews ¦ films now available on dvd
boom reviews - the day shall come The Day Shall Come (15)

Good things come to those who wait, so they say, but for fans of warped creative genius Chris Morris, he takes waiting to a whole new catatonic level.

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boom reviews - skin Skin (15)

Here’s a bit of trivia that, if you’re of a certain age, could make you feel really rather old: it’s nearly twenty years since Brit Jamie Bell made his debut in the titular role of Billy Elliot.

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boom reviews - the mustang The Mustang (15)

Prison flicks are two-a-penny, with the genre well established in cinema history. And although not as well represented, there are a surprising number of equine features that rear their maned heads from time to time on the big screen.

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boom reviews - nekrotronic Nekrotronic (15)

The smartphone will be the death of us all, that’s just an undeniable fact. However we may all be far too busy watching cat videos on YouTube to notice the planet die beneath our very feet. Still, those cute kitties are rather adorable.

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boom reviews - transit Transit (12A)

With the ridiculous political shenanigans that the UK is currently enduring, it’s almost impossible not to relate anything and everything to the absurdity that is Brexit. But with German director Christian Petzold’s latest film, its themes of immigration feel as if they give the feature added social weight and relevance.

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boom reviews - the sun is also a star The Sun is also a Star (15)

Love is all around, if Marti Pellow and his Wet Wet Wets are to be believed, that is. Wherever it may be, it feels to be in dangerously short supply if the current political climate around the world is anything to go by. So perhaps this fluffy love story, set in the city that apparently never sleeps, is just what the world, and everyone in it, needs right now.

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boom reviews - the candidate The Candidate (15)

Politicians – can’t live with them, can’t vote them out of power if they’re a tyrant like Putin. We’ve reached a freaky point in history where the world of politics has almost taken on the status of a reality TV show. The unbelievable is now somehow the norm. You only need look at a couple of the world leaders and their Twitter feeds to realise that.

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boom reviews holiday Holiday (18)

If we took a holiday, took some time to celebrate, just one day out of life, it would be so nice. It’s a wonderful sentiment, but clearly not the one that director Isabella Eklöf had in mind for her film, as the title is about the only thing it shares with Madonna’s 1983 sunny hit. For Eklöf’s dark debut isn’t likely to find you scrawling on a postcard “wish you were here” any time soon.

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boom reviews - The Intruder The Intruder (15)

With nearly a hundred roles under his belt, Dennis Quaid has certainly been around the Hollywood block. He made an impact with his early roles in the eighties, with the likes of The Right Stuff, The Big Easy, Great Balls of Fire! and Innerspace.

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boom reviews - support the girls Support the Girls (15)

Have you ever had one of those days? Of course you have; it’s the kind of day that, despite all your efforts, is just simply unwilling to behave itself. It’s one and only saving grace is that it will eventually end, and you’d have to be pretty darn unlucky for it to leak into the next.

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boom reviews - thunder road Thunder Road (15)

With the ability to shoot video on phones, there was an expectation to see an avalanche of new talent seep through the old guard of Hollywood. Even with YouTube, where anyone could upload their efforts, this route to the commercial film market has been remarkably quiet.

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boom reviews - booksmart Booksmart (15)

If you would believe films, and let’s face it most of us do, teens are obsessed with parties. Sure, the ones that were always invited loved a good party. Who wouldn’t, what with all the jiggying, the gentle lingering of frivolity in the air, choons and of course a balanced selection of nibbles. We’re guessing.

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boom reviews - birds of passage Birds of Passage (15)

Films about drug wars aren’t that unusual, they often go a bit like this: young whippersnapper comes up the ranks, wants to make an impression, throw their considerable ego around, “hey, who are you, to throw your ego around?” – “bang, bang, you’re dead!”, - ”No, bangbang You’re dead!!”. The end.

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boom reviews - extremel ywicked shockingly evil and vile Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile (15)

Looking at director Joe Berlinger’s career to date and two things spring to mind: his attention to all things criminal generally, and Ted Bundy specifically, shows impressive dedication; and he really should get out more.

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boom reviews - woman at war Woman at War (12A)

You would have had to have wrapped yourself from head to toe in tin foil (which would be troubling on so many fronts) not to be aware of the current stories regarding climate change regularly in the news.

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boom reviews - eighth grade Eighth Grade (15)

Your school days were just one big jigsaw puzzle. Every day pieces would be added to it, some welcome, others not so much, until finally, at the end of it, you’re left with a picture that represents everything you’ve gone through.

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boom reviews - dragged across concrete Dragged Across Concrete (18)

We’re now three films deep into director S. Craig Zahler’s CV, and it’s safe to say that he’s forming a familiar M.O. 1/ Write a cracking screenplay that is both stark and brutal, and hold back on the pacing 2/Cast iconic actors who some may describe, somewhat cruelly, as past their sell-by date. 3/ Above said actors must be male. Female actors seeking a starring role, needn’t apply.

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boom reviews - mid90s Mid90s (15)

The 1990s. They say if you remember them, you were more than likely there. You were probably watching Friends and ER, listening to Moby and Nirvana, playing Tetris on your Game Boy, and thinking life couldn’t possibly get better than this. You wait until you get on the internet, you whisper to your younger self.

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boom reviews - happy as lazzaro Happy As Lazzaro (12A)

There are just not enough good people in the world. Fact. This is no doubt because bad things invariably happen to them. Take that Jesus fella; he was always doing nice things for other folk, making sure they had food on their plates, sorting them out with their aches and pains, and look what happened to him.

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boom reviews - lords of chaos Lords of Chaos (18)

There are some extreme places to live, as anyone who lives in South London can testify too. Norway is one of them; with its trippy policy to ban night time with a period when the sun isn’t allowed to set, as well as celebrating the existence of trolls in a big way, it’s no wonder it can bring out the cuckoo in certain folk.

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boom reviews - Under the silver lake Under the Silver Lake (15)

Whenever Keith Lemon chats with one of his guests on Celebrity Juice, be it a minor celebrity or bland pop star, he invariably has to ask them about the product they’re on the show to plug. He asks every single one of them the same, exact question: what’s the message? It’s a deep question, and one that they can never answer conclusively, thanks to him.

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boom reviews - The Vanishing The Vanishing (15)

There are very few Scottish actors who go on to become megastars; there is Sean Connery, of course, and that’s about it. And no, Mel Gibson in Braveheart doesn’t count.

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boom reviews - Girl Girl (15)

Change is in the air, and that’s not a comment on climate change. There appears to be a greater tolerance towards our differences in society, which can only be a good thing.

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boom reviews - the kindergarten teacher The Kindergarten Teacher (12A)

It must be great to be a Gyllenhaal. It doesn’t matter which one really, Maggie, or younger bro Jake; whenever either of them pop up in a film, you know it’s worth a watch, just because one of them is simply in it.

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boom reviews - serenity Serenity (15)

It’s fair to say that British writer and director Steven Knight has come a long way in his career. In the early days, he wrote for Brummie comedian Jasper Carrott on various projects, including his BBC comedy series The Detectives which also starred Jesus, AKA Robert Powell.

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boom reviews - Vice Capernaum (15)

There has to be times, in all our lives, where we’ve considered suing our parents for one thing or another. For instance, TV doesn’t constitute being an actual bone fide baby sitter. Nor does having to trawl around a supermarket on a Saturday afternoon count as a family day out.

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boom reviews - a private war A Private War (15)

Truth is a curious old concept. After all, one person’s truth can be another’s stinking pile of rotting cabbage. And as Mark Twain said (or did he?), never let the truth stand in the way of a good story. So if you thought that fake news was a modern phenomenon, think again.

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boom reviews - boy erased Boy Erased (15)

When actor Joel Edgerton decided to pop behind the camera for 2015’s The Gift, which he also starred in, alongside Jason Bateman and Rebecca Hall, it felt as if that maybe more the direction, as it were, his career was going to take him.

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boom reviews - Vice Vice (15)

Veep – the world’s ultimate understudy role. No real power per se, but if something were to happen to the President of the United States, you are expected to jump in and immediately assume the position as one of the world’s most powerful leaders. The irony is, of course, that you’ll probably just be a foot note in history, and no-one will remember your name.

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boom reviews - the favourite The Favourite (15)

It ’s unclear quite when it happened, but somewhere along the way, Olivia Colman became a national treasure, or at the very least, a national treasure in waiting. No doubt playing royalty, twice in quick succession (here and as Liz 2 in the upcoming third season of The Crown on Netflix), is a big help. Just ask Helen Mirren.

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boom reviews - colette Colette (12A)

If there’s one actor who is keen on keeping the period drama alive it’s Keira Knightley. For the majority of her career, she has been wearing corsets, jaunty hats and serious pouts, in various historical dramas. And doing very well as a result.

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boom reviews - Life Itself Life Itself (15)

Not so long ago, cinema was seen as a fairly serious medium, primarily aimed at grown-ups. By comparison, the relatively new medium of TV was, on the whole, generally accepted as delivering the light and frothy. How times have changed.

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boom reviews - lizzie Lizzie (15)

It was back in 1995 when Chloë Sevigny marked her big screen debut in Larry Clark’s controversial Kids. Since then, she has carved out an impressive career, flitting back and forth from big to small screen with considerable ease.

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boom reviews - disobedience Disobedience (15)

It’s always interesting to see the project a director chooses after they have tasted success with their last film.

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boom reviews - wont you be my neighbor Won't You Be My Neighbor? (12A)

Up until recent atrocities, the city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was mostly known for being a former steel town, as well as home to the Penguins, Steelers and Andy Warhol.But what a lot of people outside of the States may not realise, was that it was also the neighbourhood for national treasure Mister Rogers and his puppet friends.

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boom reviews - Juliet Naked Juliet, Naked (15)

Before the internet, music fandom was pretty much contained; you could put the posters up on your wall, go to the gigs, buy the t-shirts, and possibly even wait at the stage door for a glimpse of your favourite band.

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boom reviews - Operation Finale Operation Finale (15)

There are some actors who, for some indefinable reason, are just watchable, whatever they appear in. Oscar Isaac is in one such artist. It may be because he has the air of something old school about him. If he were born to an earlier generation, he could easily fit in with the likes of Pacino and Hoffman; not necessarily the prettiest of performers, but something about them that the camera – and audiences - loves.

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boom reviews - Black '47 Black '47 (15)

Ahh the Emerald Isle. Famed for its black stout, leprechauns, that Bono chap, and potatoes. It just so happens that this film centres when one from this list was more prevalent, and surprisingly, it’s not all about the Bono. Unless of course, there was a Bono Mr Potato Head, which wouldn’t be at all surprising.

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boom reviews - Escobar Escobar (15)

Just say no. That’s what the first lady Nancy Reagan declared to the American public regarding the taking of drugs. Luckily for one man, Columbian Pablo Escobar, they didn’t listen. At one point, 80% of all the cocaine that made it into the good ole US of A, was supplied by Pablo.

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boom reviews - american animals American Animals(15)

However much of an upstanding citizen you believe yourself to be, you’ve no probably dabbled in some five-fingered discounts in your time. And yes, the pick ‘n’ mix does count. There’s nothing like that high, no doubt heightened by that sugar rush, where you walk away thinking that you’ve just stuck it to the man and are clearly invincible. Unless you got caught of course.

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boom reviews - the negotiator The Negotiator (15)

It’s true that TV shows are the new black. Not that you need a TV to watch them anymore of course, but you catch our drift. There is now fluidity for actors between ‘TV’ and film like never before, with many effortlessly switching back and forth.

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boom reviews - a prayer before dawn A Prayer Before Dawn (15)

Fights are rubbish. Punchy punchy here, bop bop there. And nothing but bruises to show for your troubles. The one exception is if you just so happen to be Anthony Joshua, who has made a pretty penny from his left-right, left-uppercut shenanigans. For the rest of us, it’s just not worth it.

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boom reviews - The Secret of Marrowbone The Secret of Marrowbone (15)

With the likes of A Quiet Place and Hereditary doing their bit to increase heart rates and have sweat glands working overtime in cinemas, horror is on a high with audiences right now.

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boom reviews - Terminal Terminal (15)

There’s something romantic about train stations. Not the tatty, rural kind, with permanently locked toilets and waiting rooms with the scent of pee and foreboding. The grand city kind, with concourses bigger than small countries, platforms as long as your imagination, and exits and entrances akin to the Penrose stairs.

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boom reviews - Mary Shelley Mary Shelley (12A)

Cinema has been fascinated with stories of monsters since its inception. One perennial favourite that can often be found on the big screen, spreading fear throughout its audiences, is of course Frankenstein and his home-made creature.

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boom reviews - My Friend Dahmer My friend Dahmer (15)

Stories of youths struggling to fit in are two a penny in the world of film. There have been so many from the US alone for instance, that their high schools are probably more familiar than our own education establishments, with Grange Hill being the exception, naturally.

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boom reviews - The Breadwinner The Breadwinner (12A)

It’s common knowledge that the Oscars often get it wrong. A fine example of this was in this year’s Best Animated Film category. The category was dominated by glossy Hollywood titles, with the Oscar going to the surprisingly disappointing Disney Pixar title Coco.The film that should have won was the beautiful Loving Vincent, with this title coming in a very close second.

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boom reviews - Submergence Submergence (15)

There’s no doubt that winning an Oscar can open doors for a performer. Since picking up her statuette for Best Actress in a Supporting Role in 2015’s The Danish Girl, Alicia Vikander has starred opposite Matt Damon in Jason Bourne, kicked ass as the new Lara Croft, as well as married her The Light Between Oceans co-star, Michael Fassbender.

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boom reviews - Lean On Pete Lean on Pete (15)

Despite pretty much being big dogs, albeit trickier to hug, horses don’t get the spotlight as much as other animals. But over the years, they have featured heavily in film, in everything from Black Beauty to War Horse.

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boom reviews - I Kill Giants I Kill Giants (12A)

Hollywood, as well as other film industries around the world, has been particularly sizeist over the years. Anything that makes you crane your neck upwards to see is often rewarded with a barrage of bullets. Just ask Godzilla.

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boom reviews - Wonderstruck Wonderstruck (15)

The last twelve months have been popular for the word ‘wonder’ in film; there was the syrupy Wonder with Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson; there was also Woody Allen’s highly enjoyable Wonder Wheel, and now this from American director Todd Haynes.

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boom reviews - Wonder Wheel Wonder Wheel (12A)

With so many creative types being called out – quite rightly – for inappropriate behaviour, it’s becoming more of a minefield when it comes to critiquing their work. Director Woody Allen has been in and out of the controversial spotlight for most of his career, and yet still continues to produce film after film.

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boom reviews - mom and Dad Mom and Dad (15)

So often in life, kids end up taking advantage of their parents, in one way or several others. It usually starts off with small stuff, like silly amounts of pocket money, or demanding a new phone to ignore them on, to ultimately moving back rent free because of your failed life/marriage and demanding they sign up to Netflix so you can catch season 2 of Jessica Jones.

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boom reviews - I, Tonya I, Tonya (15)

They say that competition is healthy, but it can really bring out the worst in people. So much so that there’s actually a new version of the board game Monopoly – the Cheaters Edition – that encourages cheating to win. But even in this version, someone still has to lose, and presumably badly, so even trying to cheat doesn’t guarantee success, although certain politicians could argue otherwise.

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boom reviews - Roman J. Israel, Esq Roman J. Israel, Esq (12A)

If an actor is serious about their profession, then at some point they have to lawyer up. It’s a rite of passage for many to play an advocate of the law, and for some they’re just ticking a box. Denzel Washington already knows this, as he got his lawyering badge for his role in 1993’s Philadelphia. But he had to take a back seat for that one, as his co-star Tom Hanks stole the show, picking up an Oscar for his troubles.

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boom reviews - Coco Coco (U)

Once upon a time, there was a super creative animation film company called Pixar. They made films that everyone of all ages loved. Then, in 2006, a bigger animation company called Disney, came along and gobbled Pixar up. Ever since, Pixar has never been the same. The End.

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boom film reviews - The Darkest Hour The Darkest Hour (PG)

History can be a funny thing. For instance, there will be a section of the population, who will, due to an inadequate education/being pig-ignorant, when asked who Churchill was, will probably say that dog off of the telly. No, no, no, no, no. Of course, if you’re a film fan who, having a great range of general knowledge, you will already know who Churchill was – from watching last year’s film of the same name, starring Brian Cox.

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boom film reviews - The Dinner The Dinner(15)

Steve Coogan clearly loves his grub. He swans off regularly to some of the finest eateries in Europe with the likes of Michael Caine, Ronnie Corbett and Sean Connery - or at least all voiced by the same man, Rob Brydon - in Michael Winterbottom's series The Trip. It's a jolly that sees two grown men constantly attempt to out-impersonate one another, whilst stuffing their faces. Not bad work when you can get it.

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boom reviews Manifesto Manifesto (15)

According to Oscar Wilde all art is quite useless. And on the basis of this filmed art installation, it's a sentiment that's hard to refute. German artist and filmmaker Julian Rosefeldt has created an interesting premise by taking the manifestos from various figures throughout history, including revolutionary socialist Karl Marx, architect Bruno Taut and filmmaker Lars von Trier, and allowing their words to flow through various characters, all of which are played by the versatile Cate Blanchett, in very different settings.

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boom reviews Ingrid Goes West Ingrid Goes West (15)

There was a time, believe it or not, when if you had something to say to someone, you'd say it to their face. Or if you were sly, behind their back. Thanks to social media however, you can now slag said person off to the world - isn't that right Donald? That's progress for you. #progresssucksHeart emoji or poo emoji, social media is here to stay. It's no surprise then that this technological zeitgeist bleeds over into old media, e.g. film. For his first full length feature, director Matt Spicer pokes the darker side of social media and this comic drama is what pops out.

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boom reviews The Man With the Iron Heart The Man With the Iron Heart (15)

It's hard to believe that back in the day, films about Nazis were as popular as superhero ones are today. Fewer sequels, granted - unless you count WW2 of course - and less Lycra for the most part, the war genre was pretty prolific . Instead of being an all out war film, French director Cédric Jimenez focuses his attention on one man, and his rise to fame within the Nazi party.

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boom reviews Horns Horns (15)

Starring in a big budget film as a child actor doesn't guarantee further success – just ask Macaulay Culkin or the kid who played Anakin Skywalker in The Phantom Menace. Well, you could try asking them, but you have to find them first. In 2001, at the age of eleven, Daniel Radcliffe got the lead in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, a role he continued to play for the next ten years, making him pretty much a household name. Since then, he's been pretty bold with his post-Potter roles, with darker fair like The Woman in Black and Kill Your Darlings. But just to reinforce his acting credentials, he also took to the stage to reveal himself, in all his glory, in the demanding Equus. In a sense, Horns sees Radcliffe return to the realms of fantasy in his latest role, for what he probably considered one hell of a part.

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boom reviews - hotel mumbai Hotel Mumbai (15)

In 2008, the Indian city of Mumbai came under a brutal sustained terrorist attack, pinpointing several locations across the city to bring it to its knees in terror.

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boom reviews - phoenix Phoenix (15)

Scandinavian countries have a reputation for producing quite glum and gloomy dramas, which is often attributed to their isolated locales and chilly climes. As sweeping generalisations go, the countries that make up Scandinavia don’t exactly go out of their way to prove it wrong.

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boom reviews - the souvenir The Souvenir (15)

Whenever you went on a school day trip, the best part of it was invariably time spent in the gift shop. These places were undoubtedly to blame for the countless collections of stationery tat purchased, including various rubbers, pencils and pens that subliminally created hordes of collectors-to-be, who would upgrade their desire to collect objects of more expensive tat.

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boom reviews - rapid response Rapid Response (12A)

Driving at ridiculous speeds around a racing track can be fatal, regardless of how good a driver you are, as the recent tragedy in Belgium, with the death of French Formula 2 driver Anthoine Hubert, proves all too well.

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boom reviews - hailsatan Hail Satan? (15)

God, if you’re to believe the hype, is everywhere. Of course God is like the Ben & Jerry’s of the world of religion, in that he/she/it comes in many different flavours around the globe. Christianity’s version is seen as the most popular, with around 70% of the world’s population subscribing to those particular religious leanings.

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boom reviews - UglyDolls UglyDolls (U)

When a popular toy comes out, you invariably get a cheaper, less attractive Chinese knock-off that soon follows. It’s nowhere near as good in terms of quality mind, but when they’re that young, they won’t even notice. And if it’s a little on the toxic side, it’ll probably make their immune systems stronger.

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boom reviews - kings Kings (15)

As debuts go, Deniz-Gamze Ergüven did pretty well with hers. For her first feature, The Turkish-French director helmed 2015’s Mustang, which was Oscar-nominated for Best Foreign Film for that year.

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boom reviews - Charming Charming (PG)

In such a crowded market as animation, dominated by the House of Mouse and other players, it takes a certain bravery to take on these behemoths at their own drawing game. Or stupidity.

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boom reviews - kursk - the last mission Kursk: the Last Mission (12A)

There must be an unwritten law somewhere stating that if you’re going to make a film set on a submarine, it has to be dramatic. Think about it, submarine comedies are very few and far between, and even fewer musicals.

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boom reviews - the captor The Captor (15)

The Scandinavian city of Stockholm is famous for many things: Sweden’s capital is home to three World heritage sites; it hosts the annual Nobel prizes; and it’s where you will, of course, find the Abba museum. But you’ll know all this, as you probably saw Richard Ayoade sulk his way around the city in a recent Travel Man.

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boom reviews - the hummingbird project The Hummingbird Project (15)

Time is precious. Which is why there’s this almost crazed mentality to make things quicker. Everything from making your kettle boil ASAP, to your plane journey taking that bit less to get to its destination.

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boom reviews - john mcenroe in the realm of perfection John McEnroe: in the Realm of Perfection (12A)

Over the years, the sport of tennis has suffered with an image problem, in that it doesn’t really have one. Many of its finest exponents, who have gone on to win the biggest trophies in the game, have often had the personality of a dud Slazenger ball.

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boom reviews - destination wedding Destination Wedding (15)

Nobody likes weddings. They’re a money pit event that guests feel obliged to attend in a vain attempt by the couple-to-be to look popular. Oh and don’t forget to bring an expensive gift with you.

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boom reviews - vox lux Vox Lux (15)

It’s very rare for a child actor continue to have a bone fide career in acting, rarer still to also pick up an Oscar along the way, but that’s just what Natalie Portman has done.

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boom reviews - bel canto Bel Canto (15)

Music – you love it right? Sure you do, and you pride yourself on your eclectic tastes in different genres that make up your playlists. A little bit of this, a sprinkling of that. Chances are however, that there are some musical styles that just don’t float your rockin’ boat.

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boom reviews - a dark place A Dark Place (15)

Never the bride. A fairly accurate description of Irish actor Andrew Scott’s career to date. Although to be fair, he did recently play the priest in the BBC Three comedy Fleabag, who got to conduct the marriage between two characters in the show, so he’s clearly getting close.

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boom reviews - puppet master the littlest reich Puppet Master: the Littlest Reich (18)

You have to feel sorry for clowns. For years they have been held responsible for creating a fear in those who encounter them, when all they really want to do is throw cream pies and wear silly clothes. If you want to talk seriously about real evil, then you have to talk puppets.

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boom reviews - the sisters brothers The Sisters Brothers (15)

Up until now, director Jacques Audiard has helmed projects in his native French, including such titles as 2009’s A Prophet and 2012’s Rust and Bone. For his latest, he heads west – way out west – for his first film in English, with some Hollywood hotshots along for the ride.

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boom reviews - at eternitys gate At Eternity's Gate (12A)

Some artists are known to be prolific in producing work, but the same can’t be said for painter Julian Schnabel, or at least as far as his side job of directing is concerned.

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boom reviews - Us Us (15)

Before the release of 2017’s Get Out, not many held out much hope for it; after all, it was written and directed by Jordan Peele, who, only a year before, was mostly responsible for the dire effort Keanu, a comedy that was about as funny as having your face ripped off by a horde of ravenous feral cats.

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boom reviews - Out of Blue Out of Blue (15)

During the seventies, there were a number of directors pushing the boundaries of film, with much of their output considered avant-garde. Sadly, that kind of mentality has been replaced by big budget commercialism, seeking a high return for their explosive buck.

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boom reviews - ben is back Ben is Back (15)

There’s nothing more important than family, apparently. That’s certainly a recurring theme that cinema likes to bang on about a lot of the time. And the film industry should know, considering how nepotistic it is.

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boom reviews - border. Border (15)

We live in uncertain, divisive times, sadly. The last thing we need is a film that highlights the problems that can arise with borders. But despite the name, this is not a politically motivated feature, thank God.

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boom reviews - everybody knows Everybody Knows (15)

It’s unclear if any other country than the UK has national treasures, but if Spain does, you can bet your bottom Euro that Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem are most definitely at the top of that list.

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boom reviews - what they had What They Had (15)

Actor Michael Shannon has been plying his trade on screen – big and small - since 1992. Slowly but very surely he has become one of the most impressive talents of his generation. And although he has made significant impacts in various roles – as Nelson in the TV show Boardwalk Empire, for instance – and notching up a couple of Oscar noms along the way, he has yet to become the AAA star he deserves to be.

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boom reviews - piercing Piercing (18)

It happens all too rarely these days, but once in a while, a director produces something both quirky and stimulating. With this his second feature, Nicolas Pesce has done just that with his weird and darkly wonderful adaption of the 1994 novel by Ryū Murakami.

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boom reviews - if beale street could talk if Beale Street Could talk (15)

So you manage to make a film (2008’s Medicine for Melancholy), which you write and direct. It’s critically acclaimed, but doesn’t find a wider audience. So you go again, write and direct and send your baby out into the world. Knock knock. Who’s that at the door? It’s the 2017 Academy Awards calling with eight nominations to deliver. Oh by the way, we’ve got three Oscars for you too. Don’t mind if we do, thank you very much.

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boom reviews - Green Book Green Book (12A)

If Peter Pan had a twin, and both ended up working in film, you’d have the Farrelly brothers. For much of their adult lives, the pair have helmed some of the silliest films in modern history, including There‘s Something About Mary, Shallow Hal and both Dumb and Dumber flicks.

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boom reviews - can you ever forgive me? Can You Ever Forgive Me? (15)

Before 2011, Melissa McCarthy was carving out a credible career as a comic actor on US TV in shows such as Gilmore Girls, the short-lived Samantha Who?, and Mike & Molly.

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boom reviews - the favourite Beautiful Boy (15)

Up. That’s the current direction of young American actor Timothée Chalamet’s career. After honing his craft on TV, in the second season of Homeland, Chalamet made positive waves in his breakout role on the big screen, opposite Armie Hammer in 2017’s acclaimed Call Me by Your name.

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boom reviews - The 12th Man The 12th Man (15)

You would think that even though WW2 ended 74 years ago, all the stories worth telling related to it, would have been told by now. Apparently not, as this gripping story set in Norway illustrates.

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boom reviews - The House That Jack Built The House That Jack Built (18)

It’s been five long years since Danish director Lars von Trier released his Nymphomaniac on the world, in two hefty volumes. For some reason, controversy always tends to follow Trier’s career like a bad, wafty smell. For his latest feature, that’s unlikely, as it follows Jack, an engineer with OCD, over a period of time. Oh wait, he also happens to be a serial killer. Oops.

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boom reviews - tulip fever Tulip Fever (15)

With the passing with everyday, we move away from traditional methods of payment in notes and coins. Nowadays, it’s just a matter of tapping plastic, or even your phone, and off you pops. And as everyone in the UK knows, as soon as Brexit happens, the only legal tender will be blocks of pure lard.

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boom reviews - Sorry to Bother You Sorry to Bother You (15)

There is only one job that is literally soul-destroying for both parties involved, and that is telesales. There’s a tangible sense of dread when you pick up the phone and are greeted by someone eerily chirpy attempting to sell you double glazing.

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boom reviews - Siberia Siberia (15)

Sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that all actors, regardless of their fame, are jobbing actors. Take Bruce Willis; at one point the biggest star on the planet. Now, starring in such straight-to-DVD efforts such as Precious Cargo, Acts of Violence and Reprisal. And no, they aren’t made up titles.

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boom reviews - Kin Kin (15)

Hollywood likes to keep it in the family. The only caveat being of course, as long as they’re male. It seems to be almost a trend now that a large number of brothers direct projects together.

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boom reviews - Don't Worry, He Won't get Far on Foot Don't Worry, He Won't get Far on Foot (15)

It’s actually been 23 years since Joaquin Phoenix and director Gus Van Sant worked together, when Phoenix appeared in Van Sant’s 1995 To Die For. Of course Van Sant was already familiar with the Phoenix clan by then, having paired his brother River with fellow heartthrob Keanu Reeves for his 1991 film My Private Idaho.

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boom reviews - The Rider The Rider (15)

Horses are dangerous creatures, apparently more so than snakes, spiders, sharks and several Pokémon. Without doubt the most evil are the panto variety; approach one of them at your peril.

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boom reviews - bad samaritan Bad Samaritan(15)

Having helmed both Independence Day films and 1998’s Godzilla, Team Devlin and Emmerich have proved they know their way around a disaster flick. Unfortunately writer and producer Dean Devlin decided to go behind the camera for last year’s Geostorm, and proved us wrong.

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boom reviews - Under the Tree Under the Tree (15)

Families can be hard work at the best of times. Your own that is, not others. For instance, everyone has a weird uncle; you know the one, who, at family gatherings, can be heard saying things that weren’t appropriate ten years ago, never mind now. He also sits at the table and uses his grubby hands for cutlery, raking food off of the table

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boom reviews - the escape The Escape (15)

For many, being single can be seen as a curse. Society demands that we all couple up, because obviously we’re all happier that way, and if we have the required bits and pieces, we should procreate, because as Whitney sang, the children are our future. And sure, that can work, for some. But as this film portrays, living the suburban dream can easily turn into a nightmare.

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boom reviews - Madame Madame (15)

More often than not, rick folk get a hard time on film. If they’re not the victims of hideous crimes (including house break ins, kidnapping, murders, etc), then they’re being portrayed as snobs who have no feelings and care about nothing more than moolah, and how to make more of it.

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boom reviews - Escape Plan 2 Escape Pan 2: Hades (15)

If anyone knows his way around a sequel it’s Sly Stallone. In fact one of the biggest surprises to date, in regards to his extensive career, is that his 1986 flick Cobra never got a follow up. Already on there way are Creed II, Rambo 5 and The Expendables 4. So don’t discard a Cobra sequel just yet.

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boom reviews - Racer and the Jailbird Racer and the Jailbird (15)

It’s not unusual to see a crime flick that involves some daring driving. A bank heist takes place, that’s gone either good or bad, is often swiftly followed by frantic car chases through the city streets, showing flagrant disregard for road safety. Well it appears that Belgian director Michaël R. Roskam has given the whole crime driving sub genre a whole new spin, that doesn’t involve 360’s or fresh tyre marks.

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boom reviews - Escape Plan 2 Escape Plan 2: Hades (15)

If anyone knows his way around a sequel it’s Sly Stallone. In fact one of the biggest surprises to date, in regards to his extensive career, is that his 1986 flick Cobra never got a follow up.

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boom reviews - In The Fade In The Fade (18)

The name Diane Kruger is a familiar one; not only did she make an impact in Tarantino’s Inglorious Basterds, but also starred in the US remake of Nordic noir series The Bridge, amongst other screen credits.

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boom reviews - Double Lover Double Lover (18)

Ever since the dawn of time – in cinema at least – films have often dabbled with the concept of the doppelganger; either characters who look eerily alike (played by the same actor), or characters who are actually twins (played by the same actor). And then you have Twins, starring big Arnie and wee Danny DeVito, as long lost identical bros, for double the hilarity.

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boom reviews - Anon Anon (15)

Kiwi writer and director Andrew Niccol likes his sci-fi and tech themes; he made his directorial debut with 1997’s Gattica, and then went on to direct 2002’s S1m0ne, 2011’s In Time and 2013’s The Host. He also got nominated for an Oscar for writing The Truman Show in 1998, so he does occasionally get it right.

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boom reviews - Wildling Wildling (15)

There’s been a strange fascination for hirsute wolf-like characters in cinema over the years, with the first featuring a werewolf in 1935’s Werewolf of London. Since then, there have been a number of them scampering onto our screens, but the majority of them have been of the male persuasion.

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boom reviews - The Titan The Titan (15)

Someone in Hollywood must really hate Sam Worthington. Initially at least, starring in James Cameron’s Avatar must have seemed a dream job. However, Not only did he end up looking like a human Smurf, he has to do so again at least four more times for the subsequent sequels that are sadly on their way.

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boom reviews - The Hurricane Heist The Hurricane Heist (12A)

When you start to play around with mixing up genres, like the crossing of streams in Ghostbusters, bad things can happen. For the most part, it’s best to keep them apart, after all no-one wants to see a horror high school musical, or an animated screwball comedy war film. Come to think of it, maybe we would like to see that last one, but you get the point.

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boom reviews - Mark Felt Mark Felt: the Man Who Brought Down the White House (12A)

Let’s face it, the problem with history is, there’s just so much of it. Thank God for films then, without which, many of us would have the brain of a certain US president.

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boom reviews - Proud Mary Proud Mary (15)

Taraji P. Henson is an actress who has really grafted, particularly on TV. She’s appeared in a number of shows, including Boston Legal, Person of Interest and currently stars as the formidable Cookie in the drama Empire.

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boom reviews - The Square The Square (15)

Despite Huey Lewis stating some time ago to the contrary, it’s never been hip to be square. As shapes go, the square has to be in the top three for being the worst. The best? Undisputedly the triangle; put something in a triangle, and you’ve already got intrigue right there.

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boom reviews - Monster Family Monster Family (U)

It’s amazing to think how much hard work and dedication goes into making an animated feature these days. Years of your life poured into bringing characters to life onto the big screen. It must be hugely disappointing then, when the end result is so poor that it’s been a complete waste of your time. And ours too, if you have the misfortune to sit through it.

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boom reviews - The Shape of Water The Shape of Water (15)

What is it with mankind, huh? Whenever it comes across someone/thing a little different that turns up on our radar, it feels the need to send in the white coat brigade with their probes, to prod here, there and did you really have to put it there?!. At least that’s how it comes across in films.

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boom reviews - Lady Bird Lady Bird (15)

After appearing in a couple of dozen films, as well as co-writing a few, Greta Gerwig has decided to take the plunge getting behind the camera for her directorial debut with Lady Bird, at the ripe old age of 34. And if that wasn’t pressure enough, she also wrote it too.

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boom reviews - Loveless Loveless (15)

With Valentine’s just around the corner this Russian drama comes along with just the right romantic message: some people just aren’t supposed to be together. This revelation can sometimes be reached rather too late into proceedings, particularly when children are involved.

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boom reviews - Downsizing Downsizing (15)

To quote a certain Private Frazer, we’re all doomed. Over the years, we’ve not-so-slowly been destroying the planet. It’s great that those with a social conscience do their best to be responsible by cycling, recycling and turning tech off instead of leaving it on standby. But realistically, the damage has already been done and we’re truly buggered. So, so long, and thanks for the fish.

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boom reviews - Last Flag Flying Last Flag Flying (15)

When Steve Carell first burst onto our screens as the awkwardly inept Michael Scott in the US version of The Office, you could tell that a career in comedy was pretty much guaranteed. And, for the most part, that’s true. But no-one could have predicted either his willingness to avoid being typecast in nothing but comic roles, or indeed that he had such ability to do straight roles.

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boom film reviews - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (15)

It must be really frustrating working for Martin McDonagh. On the one hand, he is extremely loyal, with many of his actors appearing in a number of his features. The downside is however, the talented British director has only made three in the last ten years – 2008’s In Bruges, 2012’s Seven Psychopaths and now this.

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boom film reviews - Good Time Good Time (15)

Considering the bickering that can take place between brothers, it's surprising how many can end up working together, especially in film. The most well known include the Coens, the Wachowskis (who are now possibly sisters), the Marvel-lous Russos, the Duffers and the Duplass bros.

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boom reviews Marjorie Prime Marjorie Prime (12)

For those expecting a spin-off featuring the fem-bot behind the man-bot known as Optimus Prime, heading up a fighting team of fem-bots defending the universe and that, then be prepared to be disappointed. It may have futuristic themes, but this isn't that type of film, for better or not. This adaption of Jordan Harrison's 2014 play of the same name, is set around a family who introduce technology in a bid to keep an elderly member engaged with life.

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