Rushes – Out Now: In Cinemas

Posters for Belle, Devil's Knot and Oculus

Heritage history, horror from WWE Studios, and the West Memphis Three

 

Belle

Director: Amma Asante  ||  Writer: Misan Sagay  ||  Cast: Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Tom Wilkinson, Miranda Richardson  ||  Country: UK  ||  Distributor: Fox Searchlight Pictures  ||
Rating: 12A

 

Straight off of 12 Years A Slave‘s Best Picture win at the Academy Awards earlier this year, Belle is another tale of racial prejudice, only this time set this side of the pond and with a refreshingly feminine focus. Based on the little-known true story of Dido Elizabeth Belle (drawn mostly from a painting commissioned in 1779), it stars Oxford-born Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Dido, the illegitimate daughter of a Royal Navy Admiral (Matthew Goode), who is raised by her aristocratic great-uncle Lord Mansfield (Tom Wilkinson) and his wife (Emily Watson). Despite her lineage, she still faces discrimination amongst the upper classes, and these injustices prove a direct influence on her great-uncle – then Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales – to become an important step towards the abolition of slavery in England.

In saturated release from Friday 13th June

 


Devil’s Knot

Director: Atom Egoyan  ||  Writer: Paul Harris Boardman, Scott Derrickson  ||  Cast: Colin Firth, Reese Witherspoon, Dane DeHaan  ||  Country: USA  ||  Distributor: Entertainment Film  ||  Rating: 15

 

From director Atom Egoyan, mostly known for Cannes favourite The Sweet Hereafter (1997) and Amanda Seyfried erotic thriller Chloe (2009), and co-written by new Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson, Devil’s Knot is a dramatic retelling of the infamous 1993 murder case of the West Memphis Three. Taken from Mara Leveritt’s book of the same name (published in 2002), the film chronicles the investigation following the murder of three young children in Arkansas. The titular convicted trio of teenagers are suspected of carrying out the murders as part of a satanic ritual by local police and fearful citizens, although all three claim their innocence until the very end. Academy Award winners Colin Firth and Reese Witherspoon star as a private investigator and the mother of one of the victims. See West Of Memphis, Amy Berg’s eye-opening documentary, for more on the aftermath to the savage crime.

In wide release from Friday 13th June

 


Oculus

Director: Mike Flanagan  ||  Writer: Mike Flanagan, Jeff Howard  ||  Cast: Karen Gillan, Brenton Thwaites, Katee Sackhoff  ||  Country: USA  ||  Distributor: Warner Bros.  || Rating: 15

 

Adapted and extended from a short by writer/director Mike Flanagan (a relative newcomer), Oculus is a supernatural horror that will likely attract UK audiences for its lead actress, former Doctor Who companion and lovable Scot Karen Gillan (who will also be appearing as a villain in the upcoming Guardians Of The Galaxy). While not a found-footage frightfest, this US production nevertheless follows in the Paranormal Activity tradition of strange demonic entities terrorising a suburban family. Gillan stars as Kaylie, a young woman who sets out to prove that the crimes supposedly committed by her brother (Brenton Thwaites) were the work of a mysterious being living inside an antique mirror. Told across two parallel timelines, Oculus is the latest production from wrestling entertainment outfit WWE Studios, whose previous features include last year’s chillers The Call and No One Lives.

In saturated release from Friday 13th June

 


Also out:

In limited release

112 WEDDINGS (Doug Block; USA; Dogwoof Pictures)

COMMON PEOPLE (Stewart Alexander, Kerry Skinner; UK; Common People Productions)

THE FOOD GUIDE TO LOVE (Dominic Harari, Teresa Pelegri; Spain, Ireland; Fox Searchlight Pictures) — Ireland only

THE HOOLIGAN FACTORY (Nick Nevern; UK; Altitude Film)

KNOCKED FOR SIX (Boyd Hicklin; Australia; Metrodome)

OF HORSES AND MEN (Benedikt Erlingsson; Iceland, Germany; Axiom Films)

A PERFECT PLAN (Pascal Chaumeil; France; Icon Film)

ROAD (Michael Hewitt, Dermot Lavery; UK, Ireland; Kaleidoscope Entertainment)

 

In wide release

THE YOUNG AND PRODIGIOUS T.S. SPIVET (Jean-Pierre Jeunet; France, Canada; Entertainment One)

 

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