Inside Out (24 July 2015 (UK)):
Pixar can do no wrong, with a seemingly endless well of brilliant ideas at their disposal, Inside Out has become an expectation, so its genius should not be missed. The film explores what really goes on in our heads through five emotions – Joy, Anger, Disgust, Fear and Sadness – making some of the most challenging philosophical questions entirely palatable, and presenting it in a way even kids can understand. As well as being a great film anyway, but that’s obvious, Inside Out is one of best educational videos ever made and should feature on the shelf of every primary school in the world.
Ant-Man (17 July 2015 (UK)):
In what was possibly one of the most outrageous superhero film choices ever made, Ant-Man somehow delivers. Maybe it’s Paul Rudd’s charm as the Ant-Man that really shows that Marvel can create any kind of film.
Ant-Man relaxes The Avengers and Guardians of The Galaxy, gives the whole series shape and points the over-arching story in the correct direction.
This is without a doubt my film of July 2015. It’s fun for all the family, and you don’t have to be a superhero fan to enjoy it either!
Southpaw (24 July 2015 (UK)):
Southpaw holds a good fight for not only one of the best films released in July 2015, but also in the long line of boxing films.
Jake Gyllenhaal plays Billy Hope, a boxing champ near the end of his reign. His wife Maureen (Rachel McAdams) worries about him, his career and what will happen to their daughter Leila (Oona Laurence) if he takes one too many blows. Hope ends up tragically losing his wife and there’s a possibility he could lose his child forever. Billy loses his manager, a former fighter and amateur boxer trainee takes him on, helping him get his life back on track.
When watching Southpaw it is obvious that Gyllenhaal was committed to his role, however 13-year-old Oona Laurence surprised all with a topnotch performance. Their father-daughter relationship was what kept Southpaw alive (at least for me). Definitely well-chosen to play their parts – they have a genuine bond.
It’s not the BEST fighting/boxing movie ever made, but it holds it’s ground as a good fighting/boxing film.
Amy (3 July 2015 (UK)):
I’ve already written about Amy (2015), twice now actually… But I’m still reeling from Asif Kapadia’s documentary about Amy Winehouse’s life and her tragically young death.
If you think documentaries aren’t typically for you then this one might change your mind. Kapadia weaves together family videos and previously unheard songs along with interviews with Winehouse’s closest friends and family: those who worked alongside the celebrated singer, who knew her best and saw her through the darkest times.
Amy offers an insight into an exciting and wonderful life that was at times troubling and dangerous. The tragedy of Winehouse’s death made evermore poignant as we witness firsthand the 27 year old’s vulnerability through her own words and actions captured on film.