2   +   9   =  

Yes, technically it’s not out this weekend, but given Spectre has a Monday release, and given it’s James Bond, I can hardly ignore it. Not only is Daniel Craig back as the suave spy (possibly for the last time if recent testy interviews are anything to go by), he’s also reunited with Skyfall director Sam Mendes. For this outing, Bond finds himself on the trail of the eponymous organisation, a sinister group apparently orchestrating his battles of recent years. A high quality cast that includes Christoph Waltz in villainous mode, and Léa Seydoux and Monica Bellucci on obligatory love interest duty, plus a rush of glowing reviews suggest they might be onto another winner.

While Bond will no doubt steal all the limelight, Mississippi Grind, the latest from American indie filmmakers Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck is worth a look. Their first film since 2010, it sees Ben Mendelsohn and Ryan Reynolds hitting poker tables across the south in a combination of road movie and addiction drama, both elements Boden and Fleck have handled well before. It’s not big and showy, it simply promises to be good. And a little bit cool.

You’ve probably seen at least one of his movies, and you may know something of Marlon Brando’s troubled and tempestuous off-screen life, but you certainly haven’t seen the icon laid bare quite like he is in Listen to Me Marlon. The final new release recommendation of the week, what’s most impressive about Stevan Riley’s documentary is that is uses recordings from the Godfather himself to brutally dissect his own life. Told in a dreamy style and using Brando’s voice, taken from old interviews and home recordings he made as part of therapy, it’s worth the effort for anyone interested in Brando, films, or just a good documentary.

The old order comes back to life (again) over in home release world this week with the arrival of Jurassic World. A smash hit over the summer, it reinvigorates a film series that had fallen into disrepair after two insipid sequels eroded the good will built up by Steven Spielberg’s 1994 classic. Colin Trevorrow’s film, fronted by Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, is no Jurassic Park, or more accurately, it’s a bit too much like an inferior retread, but it’s still good fun.

That brings us to a close. With Bond scaring everyone away, expect a quieter week when we next meet. Until then, enjoy the films.

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