Welcome to the BRAG’s new film column, where (normally) I will guide you with sure hands to this week’s greatest new releases. On this auspicious day, however, my hands are somewhat less sure as I’ve seen all of ONE of this week’s batch. And let’s just not talk about that one.

So sit back and watch in amazement as I swing deftly between wild conjecture, irresponsible usage of gifs and easy-to-assemble opinions like the best of the Buzzfeed staffers!

 

FREEHELD

  

 

Get ready for this week’s ready-made tearjerker, as Julianne Moore grinds up and swallows every award she’s ever won to make her voice sound like that of her cancer patient character.

 

Not only does this true-story Oscar-bait have a phenomenal cast representing some of the finest actors in their respective generations – Moore, the wonderful Ellen Page, and Steve Carrell once again completely transforming – but the trailer gives hope for a snappy script from Oscar nominee Ron Nyswaner (Philadelphia).

 

tl;dr all us marriage equality peeps be like

 

 

 

MAN UP

 

 

I’m really not a rom-com kinda guy. Not that I don’t do sappy; just that the formula tends to grate on my nerves. But if there’s one man to convince me I’m wrong, it’s Simon flipping Pegg, teaming up here with the charming Lake Bell to produce some serious cringe. Bell is the 30-something single lady (who is, of course, treated like a leper by friends and family) who pretends to be the blind date Pegg’s been waiting for, and awkwardness ensues.

 

tl;dr would normally avoid but

 

 

 

NO ESCAPE

  

 

It’s a busy week for Lake Bell! Fresh from swooning over Pegg, she’s back to her own accent and married to Owen Wilson, who’s up and moved his whole family overseas to a country that suddenly descends into the chaos of a military coup. The moment Pierce Brosnan says “Welcome to Asia”, all of my white guilt flares white-hot. Apparently, we need these American folk here, because empathising with ‘Asian’ protagonists would be too much of a stretch for us. Why are the military targeting foreigners? It’s probably not important.

 

Also starring Hollywood’s most overused tagline: “How far would you go to protect the ones you love?”

 

tl;dr

 

 

 

NOW ADD HONEY

 

 

While we’re on the subject of cultural cringe, here’s an Aussie film! Which means two things: that ’Strayan twang (the producers of Upper Middle Bogan have told everyone to lay on the Hay accent real, real thick) and Angus Sampson. This one sees Robyn Butler’s already dysfunctional family unit coping with the introduction of a pop star (Lucy Fry) into their lives after her mother (Portia de Rossi) ends up in jail. I’ll let slip some cautious optimism – could be fun!

 

tl;dr This one’s all about Portia. Welcome home.

 

 

 

TANNA

  

 

And now for something completely different… a journey to the nation of Vanuatu, where the love of two young people who defy an arranged marriage threatens war between two tribes. Australian documaking duo Martin Butler and Bentley Dean make their debut into narrative filmmaking with this stunningly shot epic romance that’s been making waves at the Venice Film Festival. It might be a hard one to find, but it’ll surely be worth the hunt.

 

tl;dr shut up and look at how beautiful this is

  

 

At this stage, I would present THE VERDICT on one of our five films, but I’ve chosen not to taint this virgin column with… ahem… that film. Read on if you dare.

 

Until next week!

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