While the uncertainty of the pandemic continued to impact box office, with all but the biggest of franchise properties struggling to draw the numbers that they might have expected in a pre-Covid world, 2021 was none the less somewhat of a bounce back year for the movies. We saw the release of a number of the higher profile properties that had been held back from last year, the festival circuit offered up some interesting works, the big streamers continued to make their mark as an avenue for smaller dramas, comedies and genre pieces that find it increasingly difficult to find space in the multiplex, and the late year box office performances of No Time to Die and, in particular, Spider-Man: No Way Home suggested that perhaps it wasn’t all doom and gloom for theatrical distribution.
On a personal front, while writing reviews was put on the back burner relatively early in the year, I continued to watch stuff and ended up seeing 57 2021 releases (plus a whole heap of older films). Here are my picks of the bunch…Continue reading
Director: Emerald Fennell
Starring: Carey Mulligan, Bo Burnham, Laverne Cox, Jennifer Coolidge, Clancy Brown, Alison Brie
As recent revelations of Joss Whedon’s abusive behaviour on the set of Buffy the Vampire Slayer remind us, the film and television industries have been at the centre of the #MeToo movement since it began. It therefore makes sense that the screen should become a place where these issues start to be tackled. Emerald Fennel’s dark satire Promising Young Woman subversively blends the revenge thriller with the romantic comedy to provide a searing critique of rape culture and a system that insists on giving the benefit of the doubt to boys who ‘will be boys.’ In the process, it might just have provided us with the first truly great #MeToo film.Continue reading