Now showing at Malvern Theatres Grange Road,Malvern,Worcestershire WR14 3HB firstname.lastname@example.org 01684 892277
- NT Live: The Beaux' Stratagem
- The Man From U.N.C.L.E.
- Thomas & Friends: Sodor's Legend Of The Lost Treasure
NT Live: The Beaux' Stratagem 3 stars
Two penniless bounders hope to marry for money in this revival of George Farquhar's biting restoration comedy, which is broadcast live to cinemas from the stage of the National Theatre in London. Aimwell and Archer have fallen on hard times in London. So they travel around the country posing as master and servant respectively in the hopes of wooing rich ladies to secure their financial future.
- GenreComedy, Romance, Special
- CastSamuel Barnett, Pippa Bennett-Warner, Esh Alladi, Susannah Fielding, Geoffrey Streatfeild.
- DirectorSimon Godwin.
- WriterGeorge Farquhar.
- Duration180 mins
- Official sitentlive.nationaltheatre.org.uk
- Release03/09/2015 (selected cinemas)
Two penniless bounders hope to marry for money in this revival of George Farquhar's biting restoration comedy, which is broadcast live to cinemas from the stage of the National Theatre in London. Aimwell (Samuel Barnett) and Archer (Geoffrey Streatfeild) have fallen on hard times in London. So they travel around the country posing as master and servant respectively in the hopes of wooing rich ladies to secure their financial future. The chancers take lodgings at an inn, run by shady landlord Will Boniface (Lloyd Hutchinson) and quickly learn that their primary target should be wealthy widow Lady Bountiful (Jane Booker), who has a beautiful daughter called Dorinda (Pippa Bennett-Warner). The widow also has a son Mr Sullen (Richard Henders), whose wife (Susannah Fielding) clearly yearns for more excitement than the town of Lichfield can offer. So Aimwell and Archer resolve to seduce Dorinda and Mrs Sullen but the two women are more than a match for the penny-grabbing paramours. Directed by Simon Godwin.
The Man From U.N.C.L.E. 2 stars
Victoria Vinciguerra is the beautiful mastermind of a criminal organisation, which hopes to destabilise the fragile global peace. American agent Napoleon Solo reluctantly works alongside Ukrainian rival Illya Kuryakin to thwart Victoria's nefarious plan. The two men join forces with Gaby Teller, whose father is a German scientist with the key to infiltrating the criminal network. With the clock ticking down to worldwide catastrophe, tensions between Solo and Kuryakin undermine the mission.
- GenreAction, Adaptation, Adventure, Comedy, Romance
- CastHenry Cavill, Alicia Vikander, Elizabeth Debicki, Armie Hammer.
- DirectorGuy Ritchie.
- WriterGuy Ritchie, Lionel Wigram.
- Duration116 mins
- Official sitewww.manfromuncle.com
More than 50 years after the achingly cool TV series The Man From U.N.C.L.E. exploited Cold War paranoia for rollicking entertainment, director Guy Ritchie continues to explore fractious male dynamics in this globe-trotting spy caper.
The unlikely pairing of suave American agent Napoleon Solo and tightly coiled Ukrainian rival Illya Kuryakin during the Cold War remains unchanged in Ritchie's script, co-written by Lionel Wigram. While the original pairing of Robert Vaughn and David McCallum lent swagger and smouldering sex appeal to the politically divided operatives, Ritchie's good-looking men from U.N.C.L.E. - Armie Hammer and Henry Cavill - radiate impeccably tailored style over substance and sizzle.
James Bond could arch an eyebrow and exude more charisma than either leading man manages here as they attempt to wrench a nuclear warhead from the clutches of a criminal network.
The film is having a laugh to suggest that these strapping and chiselled agents, both over six feet tall, could conduct covert surveillance without drawing attention. Ritchie evidently agrees and stokes homoerotic embers with a thinly veiled declaration of sexual preference that will prick up the ears of gay audiences as the men attempt to simultaneously pick two locks on a door and evade capture.
These throwaway moments, including an appearance by Pussy Galore's helicopter from Goldfinger, are symbolic of a film that has the right ingredients but no clear sense how to blend everything smoothly.
Victoria Vinciguerra (Elizabeth Debicki) is the beautiful mastermind of a criminal organisation, which hopes to destabilise global peace using a warhead armed by nuclear scientist Udo Teller (Christian Berkel). CIA handler Sanders (Jared Harris) instructs his debonair agent Napoleon Solo (Cavill) to join forces with KGB counterpart Illya Kuryakin (Hammer) to thwart Victoria's nefarious plan.
The two men bicker and brood, give each other pet names ("Red Peril" and "Cowboy"), and dangle Udo's car mechanic daughter Gaby (Alicia Vikander) as bait to flush the scientist out of hiding. En route, the agents clash with Gaby's sadistic uncle (Sylvester Groth) and forge an alliance with an unflappable British agent, Alexander Waverly (Hugh Grant).
The Man From U.N.C.L.E. lovingly evokes the textures, polish and poise of an era that rebelled against post-war drabness, with fine contributions from production designer Oliver Scholl and costume designer Joanna Johnston.
The soundtrack jives to jazzy beats, matched by Ritchie's measured direction, which thankfully avoids some of his usual showboating. If looks were everything, the film would twist and shout in snazzy kaleidoscopic split screens.
However, characters are poorly developed and on-screen chemistry between the leading men and a shamefully underused Vikander is tepid. "For a special agent, you're not having a very special day," Waverly quips to Kuryakin after one chase sequence. On this handsomely crafted yet bland evidence, nor is Ritchie.
Thomas & Friends: Sodor's Legend Of The Lost Treasure 3 stars
Thomas and his engine pals Ryan, Gordon, Toby and the Scottish twins Douglas and Donald discover an old pirate ship. This leads to the startling realisation that there is lost treasure on the magical island of Sodor. Thomas and co find themselves in a race against time to track down the precious booty before salty sea dog Sailor John gets his paws on the lost treasure and spirits it away in his trusted sail boat Skiff.
- GenreAdventure, Animation/Cartoon, Children, Children's
- CastEddie Redmayne, John Hurt, Jamie Campbell Bower, Nathan Clarke.
- DirectorDavid Stoten.
- Duration63 mins
- Official sitewww.thomasandfriends.com
- Release17/07/2015 (selected cinemas)
Screening in cinemas for a limited time to coincide with the 70th anniversary of Thomas The Tank Engine, this feature-length computer-animated adventure follows the plucky blue locomotive and his pals as they embark on a thrilling quest. Thomas (voiced by John Hasler) and his engine pals Ryan (Eddie Redmayne), Gordon (Keith Wickham), Toby (Rob Rackstraw) and the Scottish twins Douglas and Donald (Joe Mills) discover an old pirate ship. This leads to the startling realisation that there is lost treasure on the magical island of Sodor. Thomas and co find themselves in a race against time to track down the precious booty before salty sea dog Sailor John (John Hurt) gets his paws on the lost treasure and spirits it away in his trusted sail boat Skiff (Jamie Campbell Bower).