As we head towards the midpoint of the year it’s good to look back on 2015 so far and see what a fantastic year it has been for film so far. We had the blistering Whiplash which I think is destined to be a future classic, the excellent Duke of Burgundy, Still Alice allowed Julianne Moore to finally take home an Academy Award for leading actress, and Eddie Redmayne gave the performance of a lifetime in The Theory of Everything. On top of that the horror genre has already had It Follows and Spring to celebrate and the action genre was completely reinvigorated last month when Mad Max: Fury Road stormed onto our screens. So to say it’s been a monumental year so far is an understatement, and I haven’t even seen A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night Yet. So, without further ado lets see what June has in store for us all… Black Coal, Thin Ice (Bari Ri Yan Huo) First up is this heavily atmospheric Chinese neo-noir. Telling the story of two former cops who are set on a course to reinvestigate the murder case which destroyed their careers when the murderer begins to start leaving bodies around again. As I understand it the film prioritises style and visual flair above all else but with a 93% rating on Rotten Tomatoes Black Coal, Thin Ice looks pretty promising. You can see it in theatres now as it opened on the 5th of June. Blood Cells Blood Cells is an intriguing new drama set in contemporary Britain and tells the story of an exiled man who is undertaking a journey home a decade after he left. His journey is a surreal one through Britain’s margins and rarely seen characters which are as beautiful as they are troubled. The film has received lots of positive press so far and will become available to the UK on the 30th of June. Jurassic World There’s surely no real need to set this one up. Everyone is familiar with the series and as a huge admirer of the original film I will be sitting down in a theater in order to catch Jurassic World when it arrives in the UK. I have reservations aplenty about the storyline, how good the graphics are going to look and just whether it is really necessary to have yet another Jurassic movie… but they won’t stop me from going to see it when it opens on the 12th of June. Listen Up Philip Alex Ross Perry directs this comedy about pretentious and difficult writers which stars Jason Schwartzman and Jonathan Pryce. Schwartzman takes the lead role of a writer who is awaiting the publication of his next masterpiece but whose relationships with those close to him are disintegrating in the face of his narcissistic, vile attitude. Said to be harking back to the neurotic Woody Allen-esque comedies of the 70’s and 80’s Listen Up Philip should be as biting as it is funny. We can all discover what we think as it is already open here in the UK.
London Road Now here is an interesting project. London Road is the adaptation of a stage production about a serial killer who murdered five prostitutes back in 2006. It stars Tom Hardy and Olivia Colman amongst others… oh and it’s a musical. Having not seen the stage show (which received rave reviews) it’s as hard to picture a show which deals with such a story via a musical as it is intriguing to see Tom Hardy singing. London Road arrives in the Uk on the 12th. The Look of Silence The Look of Silence is Joshua Oppenheimer’s companion piece to the hugely successful The Act of Killing. The previous Oscar nominated film focuses upon those who committed mass executions in Indonesia and how they are celebrated for their crime. The Look of Silence instead is focused on a family who survived the executions whilst they confront those who murdered one of their relatives. Promising to be very hard hitting and hugely powerful The Look of Silence opens on the 12th. Love at First Fight (Les Combattants) Love at First Fight (or Les Combattants) tells the story of a young man who is settling down for a peaceful summer with his friends, family and his own business. However once he meets the forceful Madeline he joins her in enrolling in a brutal bootcamp in order to prepare for the upcoming environmental collapse. Now this is a bit of a wildcard in my list this month; reviews are all over the map with some loving it and others perhaps not quite gelling with the story and the way it is presented. I am really intrigued by the concept here but what will no doubt cement my opinion is just how original (or not) the love story really is here. Love at First Fight opens on the 19th. Mr Holmes I didn’t think I was interested in seeing yet another Sherlock Holmes re-imaging after we have had Sherlock, Elementary and Guy Ritche’s series in recent years, and yet this caught my attention. Mr Holmes stars Ian McKellen as the famous detective towards the end of his life and after he has retired. Based on Mitch Cullins A Slight Trick of the Mind the film will focus on Holmes grappling with memory loss and old age as he revisits one of the unsolvasble cases of his career. Mr Holmes opens on the 19th. Slow West My love of the Western genre combined with being a huge admirer of Michael Fassbender makes me very excited to check Slow West out at the end of the month. I’ve heard all sorts of good things about first time writer-director John M. Maclean’s efforts here… I’ve even heard that he has managed to reinvent the genre. Obviously it’s hard to know what to believe but there is a really positive buzz out there for Slow West. Make sure you catch it from the 26th onwards. Spy The surprise hit of the year so far for me is Spy. I didn’t expect to like this film at all as I’m not a big fan of the collaborations between star Melissa McCarthy and director Paul Feig, but I have to say I was proven to be wrong here. There is nothing hugely original or memorable about the film, but it was a very funny easy time at the movies and it was one of the best spy comedies we have had in years- not that that is saying much. You can see Spy right now as it opened here on the 5th. So, what did you think? Are you also looking forward to any of these films or do you have your eyes set on other releases? Be sure to let me know in the comment box below!