The First ‘Men In Black: International’ Trailer Has Landed!

The Men in Black have always protected the Earth from the scum of the universe. In this new adventure, they tackle their biggest, most global threat to date: a mole in the Men in Black organization.

Directed by: F. Gary Gray

Cast: Tessa Thompson, Chris Hemsworth, Rebecca Ferguson, Emma Thompson, Liam Neeson, Rafe Spall, Kumail Nanjiani

Release Date: 14th June 2019

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Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

JC-FEATURED-IMAGE-new

Year: 2018
Directed by: J.A. Bayona
Starring: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Rafe Spall, Daniella Pineda

Written by Megan Williams

In 2015, the ‘Jurassic Park’ franchise was given a new burst of life with ‘Jurassic World’, starring Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard. It went on to gross over $1billion worldwide (well deserved, if I say so myself). However, this did mean that a sequel was inevitable.

A sequel no one asked for…and yet, one that I’m glad we got.  

‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ once again follows Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) as they venture back onto Isla Nublar after learning that a volcano is about to destroy the home of the now-shut down Jurassic World park. Once there, they hope to rescue the dinosaurs including Blue, a Velociraptor, that Owen raised and trained. However, things aren’t as they seem, and the team whom they travelled with have other plans for the dinosaurs.

While I loved ‘Jurassic World’, I enjoyed this film a lot more. ‘Fallen Kingdom’ starts off in a similar vein to ‘The Lost World’, but then goes in a new, and slightly darker, direction. And it’s one that I think is inevitable: the island is about to be destroyed by a volcano, so the question of evacuating the dinosaurs comes up and I really enjoyed seeing this side of the story that is essentially the core theme of the film: do the dinosaurs have the same rights as current animals or not, and should they be saved, considering that they are/were extinct? This was a consistent question throughout the film and one I thought worked very well, because it was a question that had to come up, considering where the franchise would be going. Because of this theme and the slightly darker and, at times, more serious tone, this won’t be a film for everyone. Some scenes even seem to be influenced from horror films, which I enjoyed seeing: the dinosaurs are free and they are dangerous animals and this film showcased that effectively. This ultimately does mean that there isn’t a lot of space for humour, but the small amount of comedic moments it does have don’t feel out of place.

The two main actors (Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard) are also great in this once again. I enjoyed seeing them in the previous film and thought they were charming and had good on-screen chemistry. Even though they spend the first half of this film apart from each other, it was a pleasure to see them back in this entry (although I found the dialogue about their past romantic relationship completely pointless, as it added nothing to the film).

My only issue with the film was the CGI dinosaurs. The CGI in the previous ‘Jurassic World’ was impressive and made the extinct animals seem real. However, in this entry, the quality has declined and they look more animated than life-like. While this is a shame, it doesn’t drag the film down: this is still a very enjoyable entry in the franchise.

The park is definitely gone and I’m okay with that: It’s time to move in a new direction and I look forward to seeing where the next entry takes us.

Megan’s Rating:

4.5

Owen & Blue Team Up In Final ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ Trailer

“It’s been four years since theme park and luxury resort Jurassic World was destroyed by dinosaurs out of containment.  Isla Nublar now sits abandoned by humans while the surviving dinosaurs fend for themselves in the jungles.

When the island’s dormant volcano begins roaring to life, Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) mount a campaign to rescue the remaining dinosaurs from this extinction-level event.  Owen is driven to find Blue, his lead raptor who’s still missing in the wild, and Claire has grown a respect for these creatures she now makes her mission.  Arriving on the unstable island as lava begins raining down, their expedition uncovers a conspiracy that could return our entire planet to a perilous order not seen since prehistoric times.

With all of the wonder, adventure and thrills synonymous with one of the most popular and successful series in cinema history, this all-new motion-picture event sees the return of favourite characters and dinosaurs—along with new breeds more awe-inspiring and terrifying than ever before.  Welcome to ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’. ” 

Directed by: J. A. Bayona

Cast: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jeff Goldblum, Toby Jones, BD Wong, Rafe Spall

Release Date: June 6th, 2018

The Ritual

Year: 2017
Directed by: David Brückner
Cast: Rafe Spall, Sam Troughton, Robert James-Collier, Arsher Ali, Paul Reid

Written by Jo Craig

The Halloween film reel for 2017 has a diverse line-up for fright night enthusiasts as they countdown to the witching hour by entertaining a robust array of compelling features, including the anticipated return of ‘Jigsaw’ and British / International horror ‘The Ritual’. Underdog geezer Rafe Spall teams up with ‘VHS’ contributor David Brückner to supply our preliminary fix of adrenaline on an idyllic Friday the 13th release.

The Art House labelled chiller follows a group of four friends who come together for a hike through the Nordic wilderness as a farewell gesture to their fifth companion Robert (Paul Reid) who suffered a sudden and merciless death back on British territory. Travelling with raw emotions and unspoken issues, the lads experience unexplained occurrences during a detour through the forest that test their friendship, sanity and resilience.

If a story began with the bright spark of a wandering pack deciding to take a shortcut through the woods, the ending could be predicted faster than the ‘screamer’ of the group would be killed off. However Brückner’s fourth major production unexpectedly supplies a mountain of weight behind an incredibly misleading trailer depiction that suggested we were in for a Danny Dyer-esque black comedy. With the exception of free-flowing banter cascading over a solid introduction, the plot is quick to address an underlying psychological narrative amongst creepy forest events, acting as an anchor to an otherwise recycled horror with inflated ideas that surface in later plot points. The subtle wit keeps our interest active in the lead up to the shit hitting the fan, but skilfully absorbs the change in tone when our focus shifts to more serious matters, unlocking insight into our characters behavioural patterns. The scares that await behind the branches have a direct relationship with the cognitive subtext, as protagonist Luke provides key scenes that present a unique interpretation of a tormented conscience that differentiates from past foreboding forest flicks.

Rafe Spall from ‘Green Street’ and ‘Shaun of the Dead’ glory is comfortable portraying a lively but subdued Luke, changing his manner naturally with the directors pace. Spall’s support from Robert James-Collier’s Hutch, Arsher Ali’s Phil and Sam Troughton (who remains an unnamed character throughout) offer tenacious backing and timely comic relief but never overshadows Luke’s spotlight. Spall’s portrayal of a more serious role to date shows his skills as a diverse actor, preserving his place as a household British name like his father Timothy, despite flaunting a rather mellow career. As the gang deliver a grounding performance as a unit, sporadic flickers of personal growth aid their show of individuality but bare their primitive instincts that clash in a calculable way.

‘The Ritual’ closely follows the traditional three act blueprint which neatly packages the storytelling as a whole and helps to contain the sudden shift into Nordic imagination with an idiosyncratic denouement which left half the audience feeling cheated. A cumbersome conclusion teetering amidst brilliance and nonsense interjected some wonder into an initially predictable outcome but consequently gridlocked a once energetic script. After thoroughly extinguishing any molecule of humour, a counterbalance of physical legwork was demanded from the actors to compensate, causing irritating and reckless decision making from the London boys we were meant to be rooting for. Ultimately the eye-rolling fantasy connotation will remain a meaty wedge between viewers, leaving some in awe and others running for the convivial atmosphere of the pub.

Aside from getting lost down mythical lane, Brückner’s adaptation of the titular Adam Nevill novel poses a delicious pick ‘n mix of nightmarish qualities with an intriguing subjective undertone, working closely with surprise producer Andy Serkis who lends his insight on embodying human suffering and enlightenment while building an unprecedented creation for a rather inferior twist. British screenwriter Joe Barton shows his strength in repartee but struggles to generate anything ground-breaking when it comes to the hard stuff, damaging what could have been the films leaven. The “holy shit” wallops relied heavily on imagination from suggestion and hair-raising scenarios that silenced any jump scares and added greater emphasis on Ben Lovett’s simple but effective score.

At its finest hour, ‘The Ritual’ carries a powerful ambience reminiscent of ‘The Blair Witch Project’ and its overbearing tension, but stumbles into amateur hour comparable to Nordic found footage escapade ‘Troll Hunter’, linking engaging character studies with tales of hyperbolic fantasy that failed to collaborate successfully in the closing thirty minutes. Exhibiting a well-equipped pursuit through a labyrinth of woodland torment, our first bite of this year’s Halloween platter by no means leaves you dissatisfied, but conclusively plays rather heavily on a taboo genre that calls for an acquired taste to enjoy. Even though the tagline suggests the boys should have gone to Ibiza, JumpCut recommends you head into the woods regardless.

Jo’s Rating: 7 out of 10