Features

Movies Not to Miss: May 2015

Writer: Casey Lee


Which of these are you going to watch?

As the blockbuster heats up, the releases of May would seem to be the lowest point for this summer season after the one-two knockout punch of "Furious 7" and "Avengers: Age of Ultron" from last month. However, May does have a few highlights that can sustain the strong momentum, and there is also a wider range of genres that can satisfy your urge for a well-spent outing at the cinemas without needing a single epic explosion.

So take your pick, whether you are looking to squirm in your seat with horror, laugh out loud with comedy, clench the armrests from the thrillers, or just need some popcorn flick, there's surely something for you this May!

It Follows

"Ghost Coins" from Thailand would have surely been on this list for May's choice of horror if "It Follows" hadn't come along. After a well-received reception at the 2014 Cannes, "It Follows" has been having successes wherever it had a limited release. Although sharing quite a similar premise with 2013's "Contracted", director David Robert Mitchell's indie horror is subtly more disturbing where Eric England relied more on disgust. Not to mention that the "It" in the title is never fully explained, which opens it to many interpretations as a symbol that adds a level of depth that one usually wouldn't go to for a horror, making this perhaps one of the most thoughtful horrors of 2015.

General Release Date: 7 May

Banting

If there is another sport that makes Malaysians hang around at the Mamak besides football and badminton (we'll get to that later), it's pro-wrestling. So not only does "Banting" have costumed wrestlers doing the body slams (who all happened to be women), it sends a positive message that dreams should not be restricted by the strictest of dress codes. It's not about what we wear but what we represent. "Banting" hits the right notes on its premise and has the potential for having good social commentaries, so it would only be up to director not to pin it down and have it taken out on the count of technical foul.

General Release Date: 7 May

Paul Blart Mall Cop 2

Considering what a quick success the original was when it was released back in 2009, it is a wonder that it took this long before the studios realised that putting Kevin James on a segway in uniform is even funnier than putting him in the fighter's cage with a crash helmet. Divorced and in the low of his life, Paul Blart is going on a holiday at the security convention in Las Vegas while spending some quality time with his daughter. When Paul smells a heist being planned, he is back on duty to stop them, and maybe show the other mall cops how it's done.

General Release Date: 7 May

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F

When two of his loyal minions manage to collect all seven dragon balls, they wish for their leader, Frieza, to be brought back to life. Now resurrected with a new form, Frieza seeks revenge against all the saiyans who slew him. To kids who grew up watching Dragon Ball Z, Frieza is as great a nemesis to Gokku as their battle that almost destroyed an entire planet. So if anyone wants to relive that epic battle, now with Vegetta, Trunks, Gohan and the rest of the saiyan family, this movie is surely the one to have nostalgia levels that will easily go over 9000.

General Release Date: 7 May

Pitch Perfect 2

Becoming the singing hit that it was, who knew that an a cappella movie with an attitude would be so much fun. So we are glad that the Bardem Bellas are back to sing some more. After being crowned as the best a cappella group in the United States, the Bellas are now off to prove their worth in Europe at the World Championship where no American team has ever won. With Anna Kendrick, Britanny Snow, Anna Camp, Rebel Wilson, Alexis Knapp and Hana Mae Lee returning to form as the Bellas, this would also be the feature length debut of Elizabeth Banks as the director.

General Release Date: 14 May

Full Strike

Why we haven't made a badminton movie given our crazy love for the sport (Lee Chong Wei FTW!) is anyone's guess, but if there were going to be any future directors who are going to do it, then they should at least watch "Full Strike". When Ng Kau Sau, the former Queen of Badminton, rents her property to a group of crooks, she is inspired to make her return to the sport for a major competition while training her tenants into shape. Directed by Derek Kwok, who directed the life-or-death survival thriller "As the Light Goes Out", we are interested in how he will tackle this with its much lighter tone sports comedy that looks like it can get whacky.

General Release Date: 14 May

Mad Max: Fury Road

"Furious 7" may have sated our appetite for daring car stunts and tugged a few heartstrings as it says goodbye to Paul Walker, but it may not have prepared us for another round of crazier car stunts and blowing our brains out with the maddening vision of George Miller's "Mad Max: Fury Road". After 25 years, and directing happy movies of dancing and singing penguins, George Miller is finally back to the franchise that he is most known for which puts a different face mask on Tom Hardy as the Road Warrior. Instead of fast and sleek cars, these cars have spikes, driven by madmen; and a flaming car that is actually a good sign. We certainly hope that this will inject some new energy to the Mad Max series and give Tom Hardy a vehicle worthy of his name.

General Release Date: 14 May

The Age of Adaline

After a magical accident, Adaline Bowman has never aged a day since she was 29 years old. After 80 years of running, changing identities and stopping herself from falling in love, she is finally making a decision that will change her life after meeting a charming philanthropist who sparks a new passion in her. The gathering of talents for the making of "The Age of Adaline" is as magical and mysterious as the premise sound; an original script written by J. Mills Goodloe, who is best known for his adaptation of Nicholas Sparks' "The Best of Me", and new screenwriter Salvador Paskowitz. It will be directed by Lee Toland Krieger, who last made the wonderful Sundance hit "Celeste and Jesse Forever". If the combination behind the camera is potentially a potent one, then it would solely be up to Blake Lively to turn this into one of her defining roles.

General Release Date: 14 May

Bombay Velvet

Based on Gyan Prakash's "Mumbai Fables" and inspired by James Ellroy's "L.A. Quartet", street fighter Johnny Balraj dreams of becoming the most respected man in 1960s Bombay, and to live the life with the lovely jazz singer Rosie Noronha. After soaking us in blood with his epic crime drama "Gangs of Wasseypur" that has made director Anurag Kashyap a mainstay at Cannes, we would expect nothing less of crime having a heavy price to pay in his "Bombay Velvet", even though it may be dipped in the gold and glitter of the high life in 1960s Bombay.

General Release Date: 15 May

Tomorrowland

Even after a few trailers, one may not still be able to fully grasp what "Tomorrowland" is supposed to be about, when trailers are supposed to sell enough story points to get us interested. Still, when it is the next outing from director Brad Bird, that's already reason enough not to miss this. If you had seen the preview of it during the IMAX screening of "The Avengers: Age of Ultron", you will know that there is much pulpy sci-fiction fun to be had, and that looks to be just the beginning. George Clooney stars as a former boy genius who vows never to return to the alternative future of Tomorrowland, until a young girl comes knocking on his door demanding that she be brought there.

General Release Date: 21 May

Big Game

When the President of the United States is ejected from Air Force One after a terrorist attack, he must survive with the help of a young hunter who is undergoing his rite to manhood in the forests of Finland. US presidents are becoming the new damsels in distress lately, but no one is going to complain if Samuel L. Jackson is going to be a bad...mouthed one. Just as much as the young hunter, played by Finnish youngster Onni Tommila, is looking to make a man out of himself in here, "Big Game" could be Finnish director Jalmari Helander's calling card to play with the big boys in Hollywood.

General Release Date: 21 May

Spy

We've already seen Melissa McCarthy take down drug gangs as a gang-busting cop with Sandra Bullock in "The Heat", so now it's time for her to stop terrorist threats while looking classy as a spy in...."Spy". We admit that "Spy" strongly reminds us of 2008's "Get Smart" (and at least the title of the latter tries a little harder), but we cannot deny that McCarthy is funny when she switches on her improvised crass and mean humour on the unsuspecting public. Although the trailers have shown that McCarthy may be a little more tame in here, at least we will still get to see Jason Statham try to pull a comedic action stunt.

General Release Date: 21 May

Gangnam Blues

We aren't sure if the release date for "Gangnam Blues" has been fixed yet (its trailer does say a June release date even though it has already been released in Korea and China), but we could certainly use a few more gangster movies if you are not inclined to sit through "Bombay Velvet"...or you are just there to see Lee Min-ho. But even his detractors shouldn't scoff at his first leading role on film since his grittier performance here has already garnered him a nomination for Best New Actor at the 2015 Baeksang Arts Award. Anyone who has seen director Yoo Ha's "Dirty Carnival" would know what to expect (mud fights included), but "Gangnam Blues" is looking up to be as good an introduction to his works as any.

General Release Date: 21 May

San Andreas

Disaster movies aren't dead yet in 2005, thanks to "San Andreas". Instead of breaking casts and 'dancing' with Jason Statham in "Furious 7", Dwayne Johnson is now out to save lives as a rescue helicopter pilot when a catastrophic earthquake tears up the American eastern seaboard. It is unfortunate that "San Andreas" is coming out so close to the terrible earthquake that has happened in Nepal, but maybe it will remind us that there are real heroes out there doing everything they can to save and uncover lives under the rubble, even if they have arms the size of the Rock's.

General Release Date: 28 May

Survivor

When a new US Foreign Service officer is posted in London, she becomes the target for a highly-trained assassin while being framed for being the mastermind of bombings in the city. On paper, "Survivor" has the real potential for being a great action thriller. With Pierce Brosnan as the cold assassin known as The Watchmaker (in his next bid to be the next old action star after Liam Neeson), Milla Jovovich who takes on a fugitive role since "The Fifth Element" (with no Bruce Willis to protect her) and supported by Emma Thompson and James D'Arcy; these are strong players who can hold their own onscreen, but together may work into something more tenuous. It would be up to director James McTeigue if he can let these players work together to make something that could closely resemble Tony Scott's "Enemy of the State" or be more ambitious in making Jovovich a "Bourne" successor.

General Release Date: 28 May

 

Cinema Online, 01 May 2015



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