Directors: Anna Boden & Ryan Fletcher
Starring: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Jude Law, Annette Bening, Lashana Lynch, Clark Gregg, Akira Akbar, Gemma Chan, Rune Temte, Algenis Perez Soto, Djimon Honsou
Since the advent of the Marvel Cinematic Universe well and truly heralded in the era of the superhero movie, Marvel Studios have consistently shown themselves to be a step ahead of the competition. However, with the blockbuster success of Warner Brothers’ Wonder Woman in 2017 we saw, for the first time, Marvel Studios having missed a trick. While the MCU’s heroes had come from a variety of eras and planets and demonstrated a range of different powers and personalities, there was one key way in which they all remained the same: they were all male. While Hope Van Dyne had made it into the title of Ant-Man and the Wasp she remained clear second fiddle in the narrative, and characters like the Black Widow and Gomorah have been integral parts of the MCU without ever getting top billing. So it is with the 21st film in the franchise that Marvel gives us their first female led film, Captain Marvel. Continue reading
Director: Lenny Abrahamson
Starring: Brie Larson, Jacob Tremblay, Joan Allen, Sean Bridgers, Tom McCamus, William H. Macy
Irish director Lenny Abrahamson’s adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s Man Booker Prize shortlisted novel Room (which she wrote the screenplay for) is a tender and at times thrilling drama about the love of a mother for her son in the face of extreme circumstances.
Five-year-old Jack (Jacob Tremblay) lives with his mother (Brie Larson) in Room, a small, grimy, sound-proof shed with a skylight. He has lived there his whole life. It is just the two of them except for once a week in the evening when he must hide in the wardrobe while a mysterious man known only as ‘Old Nick’ (Sean Bridgers) comes to drop off supplies and ‘visit’ his mother. As an audience we make assumptions about Jack and his Ma’s situation and how they came to be there, but Jack never questions it. In his limited perspective there is Room, there is outer space and there are the planets that he sees on TV, but they aren’t real. Only Room is real. Continue reading