The New Movies You Can Watch at Australian Cinemas From Boxing Day

Every year, once gifts have been given, turkey and prawns devoured, drinks sipped and backyard games of cricket played, the festive season delivers another treat. Whatever you spend your Christmas Day doing, Boxing Day is just as exciting if you’re a movie buff — or even simply eager to escape the weather, and your house, to relax in air-conditioning and watch the latest big-screen releases.

Just like in 2020, 2021 has seen many cinemas Down Under spend months empty, with projectors silent, theatres bare and the smell of popcorn fading; however, the country’s picture palaces are well and truly back in business. And, they’re screening a wide array of Boxing Day fare as always — so at least one thing about this chaotic year is proceeding as normal.

If you’re wondering not only what’s showing, but what’s worth your time, we’ve watched and reviewed the day’s slate of new titles. It includes a trip back into an adored sci-fi franchise, getting swept up in a musical romance, catching a scorching new Shakespeare adaptation and taking in a glorious 70s-set coming-of-age slice of life. Even when you’re done unwrapping your presents, these silver-screen gifts await.

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THE MATRIX RESURRECTIONS

Hordes of imitators have spilled ones and zeros claiming otherwise, but the greatest move The Matrix franchise ever made wasn’t actually bullet time. Even 22 years after Lana and Lilly Wachowski brought the saga’s instant-classic first film to cinemas, its slow-motion action still wows, and yet they made another choice that’s vastly more powerful. It wasn’t the great pill divide — blue versus red, as dubiously co-opted by right-wing conspiracies since — or the other binaries at its core (good versus evil, freedom versus enslavement, analogue versus digital, humanity versus machines). It wasn’t end-of-the-millennia philosophising about living lives online, the green-tinged cyberpunk aesthetic, or one of the era’s best soundtracks, either. They’re all glorious, as is knowing kung fu and exclaiming “whoa!”, but The Matrix‘s unwavering belief in Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss is far more spectacular.

It was a bold decision those two-and-a-bit decades ago, with Reeves a few years past sublime early-90s action hits Point Break and Speed, and Moss then known for TV bit parts (including, in a coincidence that feels like the product of computer simulation, a 1993 series called Matrix). But, as well as giving cinema their much-emulated gunfire-avoidance technique and all those other aforementioned highlights, the Wachowskis bet big on viewers caring about their central pair — and hooking into their chemistry — as leather-clad heroes saving humanity. Amid the life-is-a-lie horrors, the subjugation of flesh to mechanical overlords and the battle for autonomy, the first three Matrix films always weaved Neo and Trinity’s love story through their sci-fi action. Indeed, the duo’s connection remained the saga’s beating heart. Like any robust computer program executed over and over, The Matrix Resurrections repeats the feat — with plenty of love for what’s come before, but even more for its enduring love story.

Lana goes solo on The Matrix Resurrections — helming her first-ever project without her sister in their entire career — but she still goes all in on Reeves and Moss. The fourth live-action film in the saga, and fifth overall counting The Animatrix, this new instalment doesn’t initially give its key figures their familiar character names, however. Rather, it casts them as famous video game designer Thomas Anderson and motorcycle-loving mother-of-two Tiffany. One of those monikers is familiar, thanks to a surname drawled by Agent Smith back in 1999, and again in 2003 sequels The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions. But this version of Thomas Anderson only knows the agent from his own hit gaming trilogy (called The Matrix, naturally). And he doesn’t really know Tiffany at all, instead admiring her from afar at Simulatte, their local coffee shop.

Before Reeves and Moss share a frame, and before Anderson and Tiffany’s awkward meet-cute, The Matrix Resurrections begins with blue-haired hacker Bugs (Jessica Henwick, On the Rocks). She sports a white rabbit tattoo, observes a scene straight out of the first flick and helps set the movie’s self-referential tone. As a result, The Matrix Resurrections starts with winking, nodding and déjà vu — and, yes, with a glitch, with Lana and co-screenwriters David Mitchell (author of Cloud Atlas) and Aleksandar Hemon (Sense8) penning a playful script that adores the established Matrix lore, enjoys toying with it and openly unpacks everything that’s sprung up around it. Long exposition dumps, some of the feature’s worst habits, explain the details, but waking up Anderson from his machine-induced dream — again — is Bugs’ number-one aim.

Read our full review.

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WEST SIDE STORY

Tonight, tonight, there’s only Steven Spielberg’s lavish and dynamic version of West Side Story tonight — not to detract from or forget the 1961 movie of the same name. Six decades ago, an all-singing, all-dancing, New York City-set, gang war-focused spin on Romeo and Juliet leapt from stage to screen, becoming one of cinema’s all-time classic musicals; however, remaking that hit is a task that Spielberg dazzlingly proves up to. It’s his first sashay into the genre, despite making his initial amateur feature just three years after the original West Side Story debuted. It’s also his first film since 2018’s obnoxiously awful Ready Player One, which doubled as a how-to guide to crafting one of the worst, flimsiest and most bloated pieces of soulless pop-culture worship possible. But with this swooning, socially aware story of star-crossed lovers, Spielberg pirouettes back from his atrocious last flick by embracing something he clearly adores, and being unafraid to give it rhythmic swirls and thematic twirls.

Shakespeare’s own tale of tempestuous romance still looms large over West Side Story, as it always has — in fair NYC and its rubble-strewn titular neighbourhood where it lays its 1950s-era scene. The Jets and the Sharks aren’t quite two households both alike in dignity, though. Led by the swaggering and dogged Riff (Mike Faist, a Tony-nominee for the Broadway production of Dear Evan Hansen), the Jets are young, scrappy, angry and full of resentment for anyone they fear is encroaching on their terrain (anyone who isn’t white especially). Meanwhile, with boxer Bernardo (David Alvarez, a Tony-winner for Billy Elliot) at the helm, the Sharks have tried to establish new lives outside of their native Puerto Rico through study, jobs and their own businesses.

Both gangs refuse to coexist peacefully in the only part of New York where either feels at home — even with the threat of gentrification looming large in every torn-down building, signs for shiny new amenities such as Lincoln Centre popping up around the place and, when either local cops Officer Krupke (Brian d’Arcy James, Hawkeye) or Lieutenant Schrank (Corey Stoll, The Many Saints of Newark) interrupt their feuding, after they’re overtly warned as well. But it’s a night at a dance, and the love-at-first-sight connection that blooms between Riff’s best friend Tony (Ansel Elgort, The Goldfinch) and Bernardo’s younger sister María (feature debutant Rachel Zegler), that sparks a showdown. This rumble will decide westside supremacy once and for all, the two sides agree.

The OG West Side Story was many things: gifted with a glorious cast, including Rita Moreno in her Academy Award-winning role as Bernardo’s girlfriend Anita, plus future Twin Peaks co-stars Russ Tamblyn and Richard Beymer as Riff and Tony; unashamedly showy, like it had just snapped its fingers and flung itself off the stage; and punchy with its editing, embracing the move from the boards to the frame. It still often resembled a filmed musical rather than a film more than it should’ve, however. Spielberg’s reimagining, which boasts a script by his Munich and Lincoln scribe Tony Kushner, tweaks plenty while also always remaining West Side Story — and, via his regular cinematographer Janusz Kaminski (The Post) and a whirl of leaping and plunging camerawork, it looks as exuberant as the vibrant choreography that the New York City Ballet’s Justin Peck splashes across the screen, nodding to Jerome Robbins’ work for the original movie lovingly but never slavishly.

Read our full review.

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LICORICE PIZZA

A Star Is Born has already graced the titles of four different films, and Licorice Pizza isn’t one of them. Paul Thomas Anderson’s ninth feature, and his loosest since Boogie Nights — his lightest since ever, too — does boast a memorable Bradley Cooper performance, though. That said, this 70s- and San Fernando Valley-set delight isn’t quite about seeking fame, then navigating its joys and pitfalls, although child actors and Hollywood’s ebbs and flows all figure into the narrative. Licorice Pizza definitely births two new on-screen talents, however, both putting in two of 2021’s best performances and two of the finest-ever movie debuts. That’s evident from the film’s very first sublimely grainy 35-millimetre-shot moments, as Alana Haim of Haim (who PTA has directed several music videos for) and Cooper Hoffman (son of the late, great Philip Seymour Hoffman, a PTA regular) do little more than chat, stroll and charm.

The radiant Haim plays Alana Kane, a Valley dweller of 25 or 28 (her story changes) working as a photographer’s assistant, which brings her to a Tarzana high school on yearbook picture day. Enter the smoothly assured Hoffman as 15-year-old Gary Valentine, who is instantly smitten and tries to wrangle a date. Alana is dismissive with a spikiness that speaks volumes about how she handles herself (a later scene, where she yells “fuck off, teenagers!” to kids in her way, is similarly revealing). But Gary keeps persisting, inviting her to the real-life Tail o’ the Cock, a fine diner he claims to visit regularly. In a gliding ride of a walk-and-talk sequence that’s shot like a dream, Alana says no, yet she’s also still intrigued.

As a smile at the end of their first encounter betrays, Alana was always going to show up, even against her better judgement (and even as she firmly establishes that they aren’t a couple). Her demeanour doesn’t soften as Gary interrogates her like he’s a dad greeting a daughter’s beau — a gag Anderson mirrors later when Alana takes another ex-child actor, Lance (Skyler Gisondo, Santa Clarita Diet), home to meet her mother, father and two sisters (all played by the rest of the Haims, parents included) and he’s questioned in the same manner. That family dinner arises after Gary enlists the new object of his affection to chaperone him on a trip to New York, where he’s featuring with Lance in a live reunion for one of their flicks. Upon returning to Los Angeles, Gary is heartbroken to see Alana with Lance, but all roads keep leading her back to him anyway.

Charting Alana and Gary’s friendship as it circles and swirls, and they often sprint towards each other — and chronicling everything else going on in the San Fernando Valley, where PTA himself grew up — Licorice Pizza is a shaggy slice-of-life film in multiple ways. Spinning a narrative that Anderson penned partly based on stories shared by Gary Goetzman, an ex-child talent turned frequent producer of Tom Hanks movies, it saunters along leisurely like it’s just stepped out of the 70s itself, and also sports that anything-can-happen vibe that comes with youth. It’s a portrait of a time, before mobile phones and the internet, when you had to either talk on a landline or meet up in person to make plans, and when just following where the day took you was the status quo. It captures a canny mix of adolescence and arrested development, too; teen exuberance springs from the always-hustling Gary, while treading water is both an apt description of Alana’s connection with her would-be paramour and a state she’s acutely aware of.

Read our full review.

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THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD

When Frances Ha splashed a gorgeous portrait of quarter-life malaise across the screen nearly a decade back — proving neither the first nor last film to do so, of course — its titular New Yorker was frequently running. As played by Greta Gerwig, she sprinted and stumbled to David Bowie’s intoxicating ‘Modern Love’ and just in general, while navigating the constantly-in-motion reality of being in her 20s. It takes place in a different city, another country and on the other side of the globe, but The Worst Person in the World‘s eponymous figure in often racing, too. (Sometimes, in the movie’s most stylised touch, she’s even flitting around while the whole world stops around her.) Norwegian writer/director Joachim Trier (Thelma) firmly understands the easy shorthand of watching someone rush — around Oslo here, but also through life overall — especially while they’re grappling with a blatant case arrested development.

Capturing the relentlessly on-the-go sensation that comes with adulthood, as well as the inertia of feeling like you’re never quite getting anywhere that you’re meant to be, these running scenes paint a wonderfully evocative and relatable image. Those are apt terms for The Worst Person in the World overall, actually, which meets Julie as she’s pinballing through the shambles of her millennial life. She doesn’t ever truly earn the film’s title, or come close, but she still coins the description and spits it her own way — making the type of self-deprecating, comically self-aware comment we all do when we’re trying to own our own chaos because anything else would be a lie.

The Worst Person in the World‘s moniker feels so telling because it’s uttered by Julie herself, conveying how we’re all our own harshest critics. In her existence, even within the mere four years that the film focuses on, mess is a constant. Indeed, across the movie’s 12 chapters, plus its prologue and epilogue, almost everything about Julie’s life changes and evolves. That includes not just dreams, goals, fields of study and careers, but also loved ones, boyfriends, apartments, friends and ideas of what the future should look like — and, crucially, also Julie’s perception of herself. As the ever-observant Trier and his regular co-screenwriter Eskil Vogt track their protagonist through these ups and downs, using whatever means they can to put his audience in her mindset — freezing time around her among them — The Worst Person in the World also proves a raw ode to self-acceptance, and to forgiving yourself for not having it all together.

They’re the broad strokes of this wonderfully perceptive film; the specifics are just as insightful and recognisable. Julie jumps from medicine to psychology to photography, and between relationships — with 44-year-old comic book artist Aksel (Anders Danielsen Lie, Bergman Island), who’s soon thinking about all the serious things in life; and then with the far more carefree Eivind (Herbert Nordrum, ZombieLars), who she meets after crashing a wedding. Expressing not only how Julie changes with each shift in focus, job and partner, but how she copes with that change within herself, is another of The Worst Person in the World‘s sharp touches. At one point, on a getaway with friends more than a decade older than her, Julie is laden with broad and trite generalisations about being her age — which Trier humorously and knowingly counters frame by frame with lived-in minutiae.

Read our full review.

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THE TRAGEDY OF MACBETH

Bringing Shakespeare to the big screen is no longer just about doing the material justice, or even about letting a new batch of the medium’s standout talents bring their best to the Bard’s immortal words. For anyone and everyone attempting the feat (a list that just keeps growing), it’s also about gifting the playwright’s material with the finest touches that cinema allows. It’s never enough to simply film Macbeth like a theatre production, for instance, even if all that dialogue first penned four centuries ago still ripples with power — while riffing about power — without any extra adornments. No Shakespeare adaptation really needs to explain or legitimise its existence more than any other feature, but the great ones bubble not only with toil and trouble, but with all the reasons why this tale needed to be captured on camera and projected large anew.

Joel Coen knows all of the above. Indeed, his take on the Scottish play — which he’s called The Tragedy of Macbeth, taking Shakespeare’s full original title — justifies its existence as a movie in every single frame. His is a film of exacting intimacy, with every shot peering far closer at its main figures than anyone could ever see on a stage, and conveying more insight into their emotions, machinations and motivations in the process. The Bard might’ve posited that all the world’s a stage in As You Like It, but The Tragedy of Macbeth‘s lone Coen brother doesn’t quite agree. Men and women are still merely players in this revived quest for supremacy through bloodshed, but their entrances, exits and many parts would mean nothing if we couldn’t see as far into their hearts and minds as cinema — and as cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel’s (The Woman in the Window) stripped-down, black-and-white, square-framed imagery — can possibly allow.

In a year for filmmakers going it alone beyond the creative sibling relationships that’ve defined their careers — see also: The Matrix Resurrections — Joel Coen makes a phenomenal solo debut with this up-close approach. His choice of cast, with Denzel Washington (The Little Things) as powerful as he’s ever been on-screen and Frances McDormand (The French Dispatch) showing why she has three Best Actress Oscars, also helps considerably. The former plays Macbeth, the latter Lady Macbeth, and both find new reserves and depths in the pair’s fateful lust for glory. That’s another key element to any new silver-screen iteration of Shakespeare’s most famous works: making its characters feel anew. Washington and McDormand — and Coen as well — all tread in the footsteps of of Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard and Australian filmmaker Justin Kurzel (Nitram) thanks to 2015’s exquisite Macbeth, but they stand in absolutely no one’s shadows.

The narrative details remain the same, obviously, from the witches prophesying that Macbeth will soon be king to his murderous actions at Lady Macbeth’s urging to make that prediction become a reality. All that scheming has consequences, both before and after Duncan (Brendan Gleeson, Mr Mercedes) is stripped of his throne — and one of the smartest parts of the movie’s central casting is the change it brings to the Macbeths’ seething desperation. Due to Washington and McDormand’s ages, their versions of the characters are grasping onto what might be their last chance, rather than being ruthless with far more youthful abandon. That’s the intensely meticulous level that Coen operates on in The Tragedy of Macbeth. His visual use of light and darkness is just as sharp, too; here, stepping back into the acclaimed play is a lean, ravishing, eerie and potent experience again and again.

Read our full review.

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SWAN SONG

Sit down on your couch to watch Swan Song, and a Mahershala Ali (Green Book)-starring sci-fi drama about mortality, farewells and leaving a mark on the world beckons. Head to the cinema instead, and you’ll see the great German actor Udo Kier grappling with the same concepts — in a movie that shares the same name, too, and is also anchored by a weighty central performance. They’re vastly different features in almost every other way, however, and only one boasts the inimitable Kier. His seven-decade resume spans everything from the original Suspiria and Ace Ventura: Pet Detective to a wealth of Lars von Trier movies, but he turns in career-best work in this SXSW-premiering film-festival favourite about a small-town hairdressing superstar enjoying one last hurrah by styling a former favourite client who has just passed away.

Kier plays Pat Pitsenbarger — and, when the movie begins in an Ohio nursing home, he looks as washed-out as a months-old dye job. With a stare that stings like bleach, he fills his days refolding napkins in an extremely precise way and spending his Social Security benefits on cigarettes he’s not supposed to smoke. After his lawyer arrives with the $25,000 funeral gig offer, Pat isn’t initially willing to shatter his dull routine, but getting a rare taste of a life less institutionalised is too alluring to pass up. His initial reaction — “bury her with bad hair!” — isn’t so quickly cast aside, though. From his acerbic attitude to the rings he packs onto every finger, Pat has spent his life fighting to do things his own way, and he isn’t about to change that for anyone.

The care that Kier puts into Pat can’t be underestimated. His is an attention-grabbing performance, but also always a deeply nuanced one, all while playing a character that’s gleefully outrageous and always has been, and is also unshakeably tinged with melancholy. Every second that Kier is on-screen is a marvel, because every second conveys new character details or plunges further into the many complexities of a man who proudly strides down his own path. Writer/director Todd Stephens (Another Gay Movie) has clearly conceived Pat with just as much thought and precision, and extended the same meticulousness to the town around him. Swan Song could’ve played like a one-note gag — a flamboyant senior citizen making a splash in a conservative midwestern spot — but interrogating what it means to be an openly gay man in such surroundings, both in the past and now, sits firmly at the core of this poignant drama.

Like its lead, Swan Song is both eclectic and electric, especially in balancing different tones in every way it can muster. The narrative is episodic and encounter-driven, but each chapter heaves with slice-of-life glimpses that contrast who Pat once was with the situation that he’s in now. Stephens’ film can look both candidly naturalistic and glitteringly dreamy — and, in the same vein, Kier stands out in his nursing home garb and rocking a women’s safari suit alike. Swan Song also smartly acknowledges the struggles that today’s queer elders have navigated and survived, embodied here by enduring grief over past losses and the impending closure of Pat’s old favourite gay nightclub, as well as the world they find themselves in now. Brief appearances by Jennifer Coolidge (The White Lotus) as Pat’s former assistant and Michael Urie (Younger) as someone touched by his trailblazing add the same layers, in a film that couldn’t be more delicately styled if it was sculpted one snip at a time with hairdressing scissors.

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DELICIOUS

No one eats the rich in Delicious, but French nobility is still savaged in this gently pointed gastronomical comedy. The year is 1789, the revolution hasn’t yet broken out, and the chasm between the wealthy and everyone else is so glaring that it even extends to cuisine — with eating well solely reserved for the kinds of aristocrats who smugly think that no one else could appreciate a fine meal. At one such dinner in the Duke of Chamfort’s (Benjamin Lavernhe, The French Dispatch) household, his personal chef Pierre Manceron (Grégory Gadebois, Night Shift) earns the table’s ire by daring to cook a new dish featuring potatoes and truffles, which he dubs ‘the delicious’. The humble tuber is considered beneath the Duke’s dining companions, but Manceron refuses to apologise for his new creation, choosing to leave his prestigious post and man his own roadside inn instead.

Delicious is framed around the restaurant trade and its beginnings; it isn’t just superheroes that earn origin stories these days, it seems. With his son Benjamin (Lorenzo Lefèbvre, Sibyl) following him home, Manceron busies himself cooking for travellers — but he’s both fiercely proud of his past work and visibly bitter about how the whole situation has turned out. He’s so aggrieved with his current lot in life that when a woman, Louise (Isabelle Carré, De Gaulle), arrives at his door asking to become his apprentice, he’s sharply and rudely dismissive. He questions her story, and perpetuates the stereotype that women can’t be great chefs, too. But she’s a key ingredient in his quest towards a different future, which first involves trying to re-win the Duke’s favour, and then boils up a bowl of revenge.

Everything from Parasite to The White Lotus have set their sights on class disparities with far more brutality, but Delicious adds an affable course to this ongoing pop-culture reckoning. It’s the dessert of the genre, even as its frames are filled with sumptuous close-ups of savoury dishes in various stages of creation — pastry kneaded, potatoes and truffles placed exactingly, and egg wash glistening to begin with. (Yes, if you haven’t eaten before watching, it’ll make your stomach rumble.) An opening title card sets the scene, advising that dining away from home, and for pleasure in general if you weren’t rich, was utterly unheard of at the time. Writer/director Éric Besnard (L’esprit de famille) then spends nearly two hours slowly smashing that status quo, albeit by firmly sticking to the obvious.

Recipes are a culinary staple for a reason, though; amass the right parts in the right way and magic frequently happens. Delicious isn’t the filmic equivalent, but it’s charming nonetheless — as engaging as sitting down to a well-cooked meal where you know what everything will taste like in advance, but you’re happy to get swept up in the flavour. It mightn’t have proven so appetising without Gadebois, Carré and Lefèbvre, however, even if their parts are clearly thinner in Besnard and Nicolas Boukhrief’s (The Confession) script than they play on-screen. The handsome period staging also assists immensely, including all those shots of tastebud-tempting cuisine. Eating is as much about the setting and the company as the food, of course, a concept Delicious bakes into its frames.

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SING 2

Star voices, a jukebox worth of songs, anthropomorphic animated critters, cheesy sentiments: that’s the formula fuelling far too many all-ages-friendly films of late. Back in 2016, Sing used it to box office-smashing success by doing little more than spinning a colourful version of American Idol but with zoo animals doing the singing. It wasn’t the worst example of this kind of flick, but perhaps the most interesting thing about it was the skew of its soundtrack, which favoured songs that the adults in its audience would like more than the pint-sized viewers entranced by its bright hues, talking lions and koalas, and frenetic pacing. It should come as no surprise, then, that Sing 2 doubles down on that idea by not only mining the discography of U2, but by also casting Bono as a reclusive ex-rockstar. For the Irish frontman, the double payday must’ve been nice.

For everyone watching Sing 2, what follows is the latest example of a style of filmmaking that resembles turning on Nickelodeon or your other kid-centric TV network of choice, cueing up a Spotify playlist full of past hits and letting the two run at the same time. Returning writer/director Garth Jennings explored how young minds process, respond to, and both internalise and externalise pop culture in the delightful 2007 comedy Son of Rambo, but his Sing franchise only wishes it could echo to such depths. The fact that its characters are merely belting out souped-up karaoke is telling, because giving familiar ‘believe in yourself’ and ‘trust your pals’ rhetoric some new packaging is the gambit here. Yes, the animated creatures are cute, plenty of the songs are classics, and it’s clearly meant to be disposable fun, but it’s all so dispiritingly lazy and generic.

It might begin with a saccharine rendition of Prince’s ‘Let’s Go Crazy’, but that song choice isn’t instructional or descriptive; nothing here departs from the expected. This time around, after already gathering a gang of music-loving animals via a singing contest in the first flick, koala Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey, The Gentlemen) has a hit show filling his theatre — but he still wants to make it big in the bigger smoke. Alas, Suki (Chelsea Peretti, Brooklyn Nine-Nine), a dog and a talent scout, advises that Buster’s ragtag crew don’t have what it takes. He’s determined to prove otherwise, taking pigs Rosita (Reese Witherspoon, The Morning Show) and Gunter (Nick Kroll, Big Mouth), gorilla Johnny (Taron Egerton, Rocketman), porcupine Ash (Scarlett Johansson, Black Widow), and elephant Meena (singer Tori Kelly) to Redshore City to pitch directly to wolf and media mogul Jimmy Crystal (Bobby Canavale, Nine Perfect Strangers).

If Sing was an animal karaoke caper that turned reality television into a star-studded cartoon while trying to evoke warm and fuzzy sentiments — and it was — then Sing 2 proves a case of just flogging the same exact thing. The narrative has changed slightly and been overstuffed, but that’s all just new words set to the same beat. While a few parts of the initial flick gleamed beyond the template, mainly because it still remained just fun enough, it’s all about as fresh as a U2 greatest hits CD here. Children will still be distracted, but family-friendly entertainment should always strive for more. Dropping two already over-used Billie Eilish tracks within five minutes to sprinkle in some more recent cuts says plenty about Jennings’ second-time approach, as does the heavier reliance upon songs in general to convey all the movie’s emotions and fill almost all of its minutes, too.

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If you’re wondering what else is currently screening in Australian cinemas — or has been lately — check out our rundown of new films released in Australia on August 5, August 12, August 19 and August 26; September 2, September 9, September 16, September 23 and September 30; October 7, October 14, October 21 and October 28; November 4, November 11, November 18 and November 25; and December 2, December 9 and December 16.

You can also read our full reviews of a heap of recent movies, such as The Suicide Squad, Free Guy, Respect, The Night House, Candyman, Annette, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised), Streamline, Coming Home in the Dark, Pig, Big Deal, The Killing of Two Lovers, Nitram, Riders of Justice, The Alpinist, A Fire Inside, Lamb, The Last Duel, Malignant, The Harder They Fall, Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain, Halloween Kills, Passing, Eternals, The Many Saints of Newark, Julia, No Time to Die, The Power of the Dog, Tick, Tick… Boom!, Zola, Last Night in Soho, Blue Bayou, The Rescue, Titane, Venom: Let There Be Carnage, Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn, Dune, Encanto, The Card Counter, The Lost Leonardo, The French Dispatch, Don’t Look Up, Dear Evan Hansen, Spider-Man: No Way Home, The Lost Daughter and The Scary of Sixty-First.


Published on December 24, 2021 by Sarah Ward

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