Film Screening 12th August, 2016

Poster for Warcraft: The Beginning

Warcraft: The Beginning 

7:30 PM, 12th August, 2016

  • M
  • 123 mins
  • 2016
  • Duncan Jones
  • Duncan Jones, Charles Leavitt
  • Travis Fimmel, Paula Patton, Ben Foster, Dominic Cooper

The Kingdom of Azeroth has been invaded by a horde of vicious, murdering orcs. Under the leadership of Gul’dan (Daniel Wu), they capture humans as part of a foul plan to allow more of their kind to flee their dying world of Draenor and to take this new realm for themselves.

The humans call on their Guardian, Medivh (Foster) to protect them, but Medivh soon finds that there is something darker at work, and that the orcs are by no means the worst threat that faces Azeroth. And some of the orcs, including the noble chieftain of the Frostwolf clan, Khadgar (Toby Kebbell) are beginning to doubt Gul’dan and the brutal course he’s taking them down…

For people who have played the popular game or its follow-up “World of Warcraft”, this summary reads as a dream come true. For others, it probably sounds like an incomprehensible mishmash of random fantasy things.

As a film, it’s not quite so incomprehensible, though there are certainly a lot of creatures, magic, backstories and alliances flying at you in the first ten or twenty minutes. But Duncan Jones’s film largely brings a very fully realised world to strange and fabulous life: the orcs are suitably brutal but with a code of honour that intrigues, the magicians strange but not all-powerful incomprehensible beings, and the humans ... well, okay, the humans are a bit thinly written, but they’re there simply because not everyone can be strange and interesting.

If you’ve loved the games, or you’ve ever wanted to know what your best friend’s housemate has been up to in the computer room since 2004, this is worth catching on the big screen at Coombs.

Simon Tolhurst

Poster for Bad Neighbours 2

Bad Neighbours 2 

9:43 PM, 12th August, 2016

  • MA
  • 92 mins
  • 2016
  • Nicholas Stoller
  • Andrew Jay Cohen, Brendan O’Brien, Nicholas Stoller, Evan Goldberg, Seth Rogen
  • Seth Rogen, Zac Efron, Rose Byrne, Chloë Grace Moretz

A successful sequel is a film studio’s holy grail. Unfortunately this film won’t fill the chalice-shaped hole in the trophy cabinet of Universal Pictures.

I really liked it and I’m more than happy to encourage others to see it –although I note that a chalice of wine might help to get you in the right viewing mood! My caveat to this endorsement is even though I did laugh at the shenanigans in this film, I don’t think it (or its predecessor) is necessarily the funniest movie in the world. So if you don’t get a belly ache from laughter after watching it, then this is where my caveat comes into play.

In short, Mac (Rogen) and Kelly (Byrne) – the young parents who waged an all-out war against their frat house neighbours in the first film – are back. But this time with all-new neighbours who are even more raucous than the last, forcing the couple to reluctantly team up with their previous nemesis, Teddy (Efron), to battle for neighbourhood supremacy. Again. There is slightly more plot than this, but not much.

This is not comedic gold nor an instant classic, but it isn’t trying to be (at least I hope not!). What it does provide is a whole heap of ridiculousness wrapped up in an easy-to-watch comedy. If that’s what you’re looking for then grab a friend and head to Film Group to enjoy some on-screen silliness.

Oh, and be prepared to witness several shirtless Zac Efron scenes (yay!) as well as shirtless Seth Rogen scenes (yay?). It probably goes without saying that there are also countless bikini-clad sorority girls.

Tamara Lee