7:00 PM, 15th July, 2017
Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana (Gadot), princess of the Amazons, raised on the sheltered island paradise of Themyscira and trained to be an unconquerable warrior. When an American pilot, Steve Trevor (Pine), crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers and her true destiny.
Wonder Woman was recently introduced to the movie-going public in last year’s Batman v Superman. Her first solo film shows us Diana’s back story amidst the events of World War I. We see the Diana from 100 years earlier, when she was more naïve and idealistic. She is a very different Diana to the experienced, super-confident woman we saw fighting alongside Batman and Superman in Metropolis.
A lot of people are saying how great it is that we finally have a female superhero movie. When I was growing up I watched the Supergirl movie and a “Wonder Woman” TV series (and made myself dizzy pretending to do her spin as she changed into her ‘uniform’).
Now as an adult I watch the current “Supergirl” TV series (which happens to feature the Supergirl movie’s Helen Slater as Supergirl’s adopted mother, and has guest-starred “Wonder Woman” Linda Carter) and Wonder Woman is getting her first-ever movie. It isn’t only fashion that comes around again. Now if only they could stop making the Wonder Woman kids costumes pink!
9:10 PM, 15th July, 2017
Based on the 2013 Dave Eggers novel of the same name, The Circle follows the journey of Mae Holland (Watson), a recent college graduate who secures a job at The Circle, a super high-tech corporation resembling a Google/Facebook/Twitter mish-mash, which is presided over by a Mark Zuckerberg/Steve Jobs-like CEO (Hanks).
The inventor and promoter of concepts each worthy of its own “Black Mirror” episode – including ‘SeeChange’, a miniature wearable portable camera streaming live to the internet – The Circle pursues a philosophy of total transparency. Privacy is viewed as selfish and even a barrier to human progress, resulting in a society of perpetual over-sharers. Mae is confronted by the consequences of this ‘sharing is caring, secrets are lies’ philosophy as she rises ever higher in the company’s ranks. At the same time, she becomes romantically involved with mysterious co-worker Kalden (John Boyega), and faces an anti-Circle adversary in her ex-boyfriend Mercer (Ellar Coltrane).
Written and directed by James Ponsoldt (director of the delightful The Spectacular Now and the thought-provoking David Foster Wallace biopic The End of the Tour) and buoyed by a strong cast, The Circle is looking to be a necessary exploration of pertinent themes at the nexus of technology and society. It is both a dystopian warning in the spirit of Orwell’s “1984” or Huxley’s “Brave New World” and a satire of Silicon Valley’s ‘change the world’ political idealism.