Ida Red (2021, dir. John Swab)

Tulsa-based criminals work to raise the money to get a matriarch out of prison before she dies. Not-bad 2010-set noir drama with action elements. Does plenty of things seen elsewhere (from Heat to Hell or High Water) but has its own decent vibe, a fine cast of character actors, and some quirky moments. Swab remains a talent to keep an eye on.

Here’s the trailer.

Monster Hunter (2020, dir. Paul WS Anderson)

An army ranger is transported to another dimension, where she must battle giant creatures. Okay and often handsome video game franchise adaptation, efficiently-enough riffing on everything from Aliens to Beetlejuice via Starship Troopers: well-tailored for an international action market, if a touch po-faced in execution for the most part.

Here’s the trailer.

The Strangers: Prey at Night (2018, dir. Johannes Roberts)

A dysfunctional family on a trip to relatives encounters murderous masked teens. Competent slasher sequel which benefits from a decent cast and some strong moments, but that doesn’t really add anything to its predecessor. A lighter touch makes the flick more accessible, but this might not be what’s quite needed here.

Here’s the trailer.

Jungle Cruise (2021, dir. Jaume Collet-Serra)

A scientist-adventurer and an irascible tugboat captain journey up the Amazon in search of a fabled tree. Labourious action-fantasy cribbing from allsorts: The African Queen, Aguirre: Wrath of God, various Pirates of the Caribbean flicks, the Brendan Fraser iteration of The Mummy. Not great, and a disappointment from the usually sure Collet-Serra.

Here’s the trailer.

The Marksman (2021, dir. Robert Lorenz)

A struggling rancher takes a Mexican boy to Chicago, pursued by vengeful cartel members. Straightforward but effective thriller with action elements, with the feel of a Clint Eastwood vehicle that got recast. No surprises, but not bad in its way, and with a couple of lovely supporting performances.

Here’s the trailer.

Chungking Express (1994, dir. Wong Kar Wai)

Two stories in the same part of Hong Kong, both featuring lovelorn cops. Splendid postmodern comic romance with thriller asides: a love letter to the sidestreets, drawing on the 60s French New Wave and 80s Cinema du Look in more-or-less equal measure. Recommended.

Here’s the trailer.

400 Bullets (2020, dir. Tom Paton)

Two soldiers protect a case of missile chips against superior opposition. OK low-budget military actioner that doesn’t quite maximise its potential to do Assault On Precinct 13 in Afghanistan. Still, there’s some promise in the handling of limited resources, and there’s more to come from the talented Jean-Paul Ly.

Here’s the trailer.

Riders of Justice [AKA Retfærdighedens Ryttere] (2020, dir. Anders Thomas Jensen)

A soldier teams up with three data specialists to get revenge for his wife’s death. What sets itself up as a straightforward action thriller quickly develops into a black comedy that’s touching, outrageous, and daring in all kinds of ways. Highly recommended.

Old (2021, dir. M Night Shyamalan)

A remote beach has the power to age humans dramatically: holidaying strangers race against time to escape. Good-looking if at-times awkward Twilight Zone-ish yarn with horror elements. Not sure the movie plays wholly fair with its resolution, but there’s an OK one-time watch here.

Here’s the trailer.

Halloween Kills (2021, Dir. David Gordon Green)

Utterly dreadful and unnecessary sequel to the 2018 Halloween sequel-reboot. Michael Myers carves up more scared people in Haddonfield including the dregs of the 1978 original film cast. So unbelievably stupid it beggars belief. Painful even for hardcore fans.

Halloween Kills (2021, Dir. David Gordon Green) Utterly Crap – Avoid!