CineVue

Film reviews and more

Zoe Margolis

Film Review: Nomadland

★★★★★ Adapted from Jessica Bruder’s non-fiction book Nomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century, the Oscar and Bafta-winning Nomadland is writer and director Chloé Zhao’s third feature-length film and is a beautiful and compassionate portrait of people living on the […]

Film Review: Synchronic

★★★☆☆ Blending science fiction, crime drama and psychedelia, Synchronic is the wildly eccentric fourth film by American filmmaking duo Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead (The Endless, Spring). New Orleans paramedic team and best friends Steve (Anthony Mackie) and Dennis (Jamie […]

Film Review: Long Day’s Journey into Night

★★★★☆ “The difference between film and memory is that films are always false”, muses protagonist Luo Hongwu (Huang Jue) early on in Long Day’s Journey into Night. If what we see, like Hongwu’s own perspective, is unreliable, and if we […]

Film Review: Judy & Punch

★★★☆☆ Turning the traditional story of Punch and Judy on its head with a joyously feminist reinterpretation, debut writer and director Mirrah Foulkes offers an accomplished delight with Judy & Punch. Set in the anarchic and outlandish town of Seaside […]

#LFF 2019: Blackbird review

★★★★☆ Set around a vast estate on the northeast American coast, in Roger Michell’s Blackbird, a family comes together over one last weekend to say their goodbyes to matriarch Lily (Susan Sarandon). Lily has a terminal illness which causes such […]

Film Review: The Peanut Butter Falcon

★★★★☆ A seemingly mismatched road-trip buddy movie, Tyler Nilson and Michael Schwartz’s The Peanut Butter Falcon is heartwarming and filled to the brim with humour and charm. Mourning the loss of his brother Mark (Jon Bernthal), fisherman Tyler (Shia LaBeouf) […]

Film Review: The Flood

★★★★☆ Anthony Woodley’s The Flood follows Eritrean refugee Haile (the extremely impressive Ivanno Jeremiah) on a journey full of hazard over oceans and across borders, as we see him arrive in the UK hoping to find solace and safety. Instead, Haile comes face […]

Film Review: Mari

★★★★☆ An ambitious debut feature by writer-director Georgia Parris, Mari is a tender, intimate exploration of life and death, expressed through movement and dance. When choreographer Charlotte (Bobbi Jene Smith) discovers she is pregnant and that her grandmother Mari is […]

Film Review: Thunder Road

★★★★☆ Opening with an excruciating but perversely funny funeral scene, Thunder Road is unapologetic in showing the rawness and devastation death can have on people. Eulogising his dead mother – via a humiliatingly awful song and dance routine – is […]

Film Review: Green Book

★★★☆☆ Exploring the politics of race and class in 1960s America, Green Book attempts to shine a light on the civil rights era through an inspirational buddy drama. It works for the most part, but at best it’s a somewhat […]

#LFF 2018: Stan & Ollie review

★★★☆☆ Inspired by the book Laurel and Hardy: The British Tours by A.J. Marriot, who also featured as a consultant on the film, Jon S. Baird’s Stan & Ollie is part biography and part homage to Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, […]

Film Review: Sorry to Bother You

★★★☆☆ Ambitious. Witty. Original. Surreal. Ridiculous. These all describe writer Boots Riley’s directorial debut Sorry To Bother You, and yet none of them quite encapsulate how innovative and genre-defying it is. It’s a screwball comedy, it’s absurdist sci-fi, it’s a […]

Film Review: Been So Long

★★★★★ Tinge Krishnan’s Been So Long is a musical delight of heart-warming songs, sardonic British humour, and fantastic performances. Set in London’s Camden Town, its usual grittiness glossed over with a romantic, Technicolor lens, the story avoids posturing with the usual […]

Film Review: The Wife

★★★★★ Joan Castleman (Glenn Close) has intellect, charm, and elegant diplomacy. Her husband Joe (Jonathan Pryce), meanwhile, is the personification of a ditzy writer: flyaway hair, scraggly beard, incapable of having any structure to his life – whether that’s remembering to […]

Film Review: Lucky

★★★★★ Lucky follows the journey of a 90-year-old atheist who finds himself at the precipice of life. It begins like a beautifully slow comedy, filled with the quirks of Lucky’s daily routine and his almost mystical interactions with the town’s […]

Film Review: Yardie

★★★★☆ Idris Elba’s impressive directorial debut is an adaptation of Victor Headley’s novel Yardie. A hugely successful indie book, sold in hairdressers, clothing shops and nightclubs, it went on to become a cult hit. The book was, at the time […]

Film Review: The Happytime Murders

★★★☆☆ Marking the film debut of Henson Alternative, a banner of The Jim Henson Company that specialises in adult content, The Happytime Murders is a puppet-based black comedy which definitely isn’t for kids. Based in a world where puppets and […]

Film Review: The Escape

★★★★☆ The Escape is an emotional exploration of a fractured marriage, but something much darker is at its core: depression and an existential crisis. Gemma Arterton is magnificent as Tara, the stay-at-home mother juggling never-ending laundry loads and repetitive breakfast […]