In Cinemas: 'Big Hero 6' (2014) + 'Kingsman: The Secret Service' (2015)
You could be less than enthused about yet another Marvel superhero film - or perhaps rather excited by the prospect - but 'Big Hero 6' (★★★★) is considerably different than the Studio's other properties. Directors Don Hall and Chris Williams deliver a vivid animation featuring a young genius, who transforms his brother's loveable robot companion Baymax into the heroic spearhead of a rag tag team taking on a masked villain.
'Big Hero 6' mixes the adventure and action of 'The Incredibles' with the heart of similar efforts like 'The Iron Giant' and 'How To Train Your Dragon'. Where this animation exceeds its counterparts is in its incredible visuals as well as its humour, with the interactions between Baymax and lead protagonist Hiro often proving highly amusing for adults and children alike. The emotions toward the end of the film might feel a tad forced but up till then, 'Big Hero 6' is a wonderful journey to be part of. (And it's well worth catching in the cinema for the wonderful preceding dog-based short, 'Feast'.)
Writer-director Matthew Vaughn teams up again with fellow screenwriter Jane Goldman and comic book creator Mark Millar for 'Kingsman: The Secret Service' (★★★), following their collaborations on 2010's cult hit 'Kick-Ass'. Here the team turn the eye on the spy genre, following the path of Taron Egerton as he moves unemployed youngster on a London council estate to secret agent, under Colin Firth's stately guidance.
Samuel L Jackson is on hand as the villainous CEO of a technology corporation, complete with lisp and unconventional fashion style. It's not that much less ridiculous than his appearance in the much derided graphic novel adaptation 'The Spirit'. He does seem to be having fun with it though, and there are certainly several enjoyable moments throughout the film. However, the uneven tone becomes increasingly detrimental, with the ending leaving a particularly sour taste in the mouth with its oddly archaic attitude.
At Home: 'Magic In The Moonlight' (2014) + 'Black Mirror' Christmas special
Colin Firth also appeared in Woody Allen's latest fare, 'Magic In The Moonlight' - a more whimsical follow up to the weighty drama of 2013's 'Blue Jasmine'. Out now on Blu-ray and DVD in the UK, Firth portrays an illusionist and rationalist who is hired to expose Emma Stone's clairvoyant Sophie. As he struggles to find fault with her methods, he begins to fall for her, resulting in a somewhat enchanting (but similarly forgettable) romantic comedy.
The Christmas special of Charlie Brooker's haunting TV series 'Black Mirror' also makes its way into UK homes this week on DVD, plumbing even darker depths than seen in the first two series of the show. Jon Hamm and Rafe Spall star in 'White Christmas' - Brooker's latest cautionary commentary on the power of digital technology, with perhaps the most powerfully unsettling ending yet.
TV & Movie News
After missing out on the Oscars, 'The LEGO Movie' picked up a well-deserved Best Animated Film win at the BAFTAs. The big winners were Stephen Hawking-biopic 'The Theory Of Everything' and Wes Anderson's 'The Grand Budapest Hotel', although 'Boyhood' took away the coveted Best Film prize. The full list of winners can be found at bafta.org.
We've got the first trailer of the latest film incarnation (last seen in 1968!) of popular TV spy show 'The Man from U.N.C.L.E.'. The new film stars Armie Hammer and Henry Cavill, and you can see them in action below:
BBC Three are running a consultation about its planned move to online-only content, and Jordan FG has written a piece highlighting more on the case, as well as his favourite shows from over the years.
The big film news in the comic world was the sudden announcement of Spider-Man joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which will excitingly see the superhero join an upcoming film in the MCU before appearing in a new standalone film in 2017. Read more at marvel.com.
In further unexpected and certainly more bizarre news, the main cast of 'Saved By The Bell' came together to reprise their former characters on the 'The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon':
Read previous On Camera columns here. Drop us a line at film(at)fadedglamour.co.uk if you have something you think might be worth featuring in a future column.