In 2019, more than 10,000 films were released. In 2020 there will be no less than prime. In order not to get lost in such a variety of new products, critics’ reviews, articles and ratings on the Internet are needed.
A very different depiction of war comes in this World War One epic from Sam Mendes, the Oscar-winning director of American Beauty and the last two Bonds.
Based on a story told to Mendes by his grandfather, 1917 sees two young British soldiers on a race against time to avert a devastating assault on their comrades in arms.
Mendes’ bold conceit is to tell the story of their mission in what looks like (but isn’t) a seamless single shot – one that takes the viewer into trenches, across battlefields and even underwater.
George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman play the callow leads in a film whose starry ensemble also includes Benedict Cumberbatch, Colin Firth and Andrew Scott.
Earlier this year Mendes called the film, which he also co-wrote, “a big, experiential, immersive picture” that was “incredibly close to his heart”.
The sexual harassment scandal that led to the departure of Fox News’ Roger Ailes from the network he founded is recreated in Jay Roach’s highly topical latest.
Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron and Margot Robbie co-star as three of Ailes’ accusers, while John Lithgow plays Ailes.
Malcolm McDowell, meanwhile, delivers a deliciously deadpan cameo as media mogul Rupert Murdoch.
The make-up used to transform Lithgow into Ailes and Theron into TV presenter Megyn Kelly has to be seen to be believed.