Cruella (2021, dir. Craig Gillespie)

An orphan seeks revenge on the fashion maven who killed her mother. Confident, stylish, though thin and overlong prequel to 101 Dalmatians. Basically a supervillain origin story (Cruella is Tim Burton-era Batman, plus Joker and Catwoman here) though borrowing from all-sorts, including The Terminator. MVP is Paul Walter Hauser, though everyone is in on the joke.

Here’s the trailer.

The Favourite (2018, dir. Yorgos Lanthimos)

A young woman, new at court, works to undermine her cousin and become the favoured companion of Queen Anne. Smart drama with a darkly comic sensibility, flirting between arthouse and mainstream. Excellent performances throughout, even if it bears only a passing resemblance to the actual history.

Here’s the trailer.

Zombieland: Double Tap (2019, dir. Ruben Fleischer)

Ten years after the events of Zombieland; tensions split the group, but new threats emerge.  Horror-comedy z-sequel that offers pretty much the same as before, though with inevitably diminished returns. Fine for those who liked the first one, though there’s little here for anyone else.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2: Rise of Electro (2014, dir. Marc Webb)

Spidey comes up against two new foes, and one old one. Stronger in its comedy and in the romantic entanglement stuff than in its superheroics, ASM2 ends up nevertheless both soapy and in a rote city smash-up finale against underwritten opposition.