After having made many an entertaining comedy in his collaborations with Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright, Cuban Fury (2014) marks Nick Frost‘s first bona fide solo outing. Directed by newcomer James Griffiths, it’s a feel-good, if predictable offering.
Initially conceptualised in a drunken email Frost sent to his producer, the film centres on Bruce Garrett (Frost), a former teen salsa champion who hung up his dance shoes after a bout of bullying. Cut to the present day and Bruce, who has since become overweight, now spends his days working a mundane 9-5 job whilst being bullied by his smarmy colleague Drew (Chris O’Dowd). When it becomes apparent that his boss Julia (former Parks & Recreation star Rashida Jones) also has a passion for salsa, Bruce is encouraged by his sister Sam (Olivia Colman) to dust off his dancing shoes and gain her interest.
After the billion dollar successes of both Avengers Assemble and Iron Man 3, Marvel’s ‘Phase Two’ continues with the highly anticipated Thor: The Dark World. With Game of Thrones director Alan Taylor replacing Kenneth Branagh at the helm, the sequel serves up the thrills as well as the laughs in what is an enjoyable superhero outing.
Much like Branagh’s franchise opener, The Dark World begins with Anthony Hopkins’ Odin narrating a prologue before we catch up with Thor (Chris Hemsworth), who’s been busy on cosmic peacekeeping duty post-Avengers. When an ancient race led by the vengeful Malekith (Christopher Eccleston) resurfaces on the hunt for a powerful weapon that could destroy the universe, Thor must ally with the mischievous Loki (Tom Hiddleston) if he is to save the Nine Realms.
After a handful of producer credits, Judd Apatow is back in the hot seat for romantic comedy This is 40, the sort-of sequel to 2007’s Knocked Up. This time the director has turned his gaze on the difficulties of marriage, and his typically perceptive examination proves equally insightful and enjoyable.
The narrative focuses on the marriage of frustrated couple Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann) on the eve of their 40th birthdays, and as the party approaches the pair must overcome their midlife troubles, in business and with one another.
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