Hybridising Disney’s magic with Marvel’s wonder, Big Hero 6 is a film bursting with energy, colour, warmth and sincerity. Disney’s new-age 3D animation renaissance (Tangled, Wreck it Ralph, Frozen) continues, and in the process, their winning formula has created the best family-friendly superhero film since The Incredibles.
Add Jake Gyllenhaal’s creepy videographer Lou Bloom to the long list of deranged American loners and sociopaths. It’s not too hard to envision Bloom and his amoral anti-hero antics being somehow related by blood to Taxi Driver’s Travis Bickle (immortally played by the great Robert De Niro).
Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar demands for a patient, open-minded and perceptive audience. For this very reason, it is destined to divide. Missing are the exhilarating action set pieces that viewers have come to expect from the director. At its core, Nolan’s three-hour epic is a high concept, science fiction love letter that mourns for mankind’s pioneering past and embraces the transcendent power of love.
There is a profundity to this cutting dialogue which inspires Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash. It’s a blunt reminder that the widespread acceptance of mediocrity is impermissible. It’s also a confident and direct stab at filmmakers who assemble and shovel uninspired trite down the throats of their compliant audience.
2011’s surprising Rise of the Planet of the Apes was an impressive showcase of how a fairly simple, modern science fiction story could be propelled to compelling new heights thanks to an emotional and industry-changing motion capture performance by Andy Serkis. The film wasn’t perfect. The human characters were fairly one dimensional and the script had its issues, but the project was moving and clever enough to do more than justify its existence as a reboot.
22 Jump Street is 21 Jump Street all over again, but with it’s ‘meta-scope’ slammed into its highest possible gear. It knows what worked the first time round and it’s certainly not going to mess with a winning formula. Its self-awareness and witty smugness is on full display here. “It’s the same case! Do the same thing!” it yells directly to its lead characters and to audience expectations. All this intentional winking and self-referencing does its job exceedingly well and with hugely entertaining results.