Stratton (2017, dir. Simon West)

A Special Boat Service operative races against time to prevent a terrorist attack. Utterly secondhand and dull thriller, lacking in decent action, watchable performances, or a script with an iota of originality. Astonishing this got a cinema release, when stronger fare goes straight to download/DVD.

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (2017, dir. David Soren)

Based on the books by Dav Pilkey, this is a fun big screen debut for the eponymous captain. Superbly animated and never less than entertaining, there is much fun to be had here, even if it is based on a series of jokes about bodily functions. Parp.

Police Story: Lockdown [AKA Police Story 2013] (2013, dir. Ding Sheng)

A Chinese cop trying to find his daughter becomes embroiled in a siege situation. Unrelated to the previous Police Story movies, and with a more serious tone than previous, this is a glossy but over-directed actioner ultimately limited by plot and budget constraints.

Patriot Games (1992, dir. Phillip Noyce)

Or, Jack Ryan v. bits of the IRA. Awkwardly-conceived thriller which tries to have ‘good’ and ‘bad’ terrorists (this was pre-9/11; the IRA tended to be romanticised in US popculture). Some decent set-pieces, and a picture-postcard view of the UK.

King Cohen (2017, dir. Steve Mitchell)

Documentary offering a career retrospective of writer/director Larry Cohen. And an utterly splendid thing it is too; Cohen is engaging and forthright, and a blend of clips, archive footage, and interviews underlines Cohen’s significance to genre. Well worth your time.

Leatherface (2017, dir. Julien Maury & Alexandre Bustillo)

An origin story, tenuously linked to Chainsaw 3D. And not a very good one. Clumsy scripting, awkward directorial choices, continuity errors, and an inconsistent tone mar this prequel. Veterans Dorff and Taylor do what they can to add a little class.

Radius (2017, dir. Caroline Labreche & Steeve Leonard)

A man with memory loss finds that anything that comes close to him dies. A splendidly Stephen King-ish premise is generally effectively handled in this modest and character-focused flick, though unnecessary relationship twists takes it into awkward territory.