This month’s top movie releases, reviewed

From Digital Spy

Cinemas have reopened in the UK, but it’s not just at the cinema where new movies are being released right now.

But even with more spare time than ever before, you will want to know that the movie you’re spending your time on is worth it. So which one of the new releases should you choose to settle down to?

Here’s our handy round-up of reviews for the biggest releases out now.

Films out September 1-30

Enola Holmes (out September 23 on Netflix)

As origin stories go, Enola Holmes at least does the job of making you want to see where those future movies could go, even if the mystery chosen for the first outing is both overstuffed and not that interesting.

It’s Millie Bobby Brown that makes Enola Holmes work despite the movie’s flaws, and we just hope that the next Holmes outing will be worthy of her talent.

Read our full Enola Holmes review

The Broken Hearts Gallery (out September 11)

Executive produced by Selena Gomez, The Broken Hearts Gallery will be hoping that cinemagoers are looking for something lighter than Tenet, and fans of rom-coms will find plenty to enjoy.

After being dumped by Max (Utkarsh Ambudkar), emotional hoarder Lucy (Geraldine Viswanathan) is inspired to do something with the souvenirs she’s kept from all of her relationships. Lucy creates The Broken Heart Gallery in a hotel being renovated by Nick (Dacre Montgomery) and as word spreads of the pop-up space, Lucy discovers there might be a fresh start in love for her too.

The Broken Hearts Gallery is predictable, but no more so than your typical rom-com, and its strength lies in its cast. Geraldine Viswanathan has impressed in the likes of Blockers and continues her impressive rise here with a terrific lead role, enjoying nice chemistry with Dacre Montgomery in a role a world away from Billy in Stranger Things.

At its best, The Broken Hearts Gallery is sweet, progressive and funny, especially thanks to winning turns from Hamilton’s Phillipa Soo and Molly Gordon as Lucy’s long-suffering friends. The problem is that given you know where the story is going, it’s overlong at 110 minutes and often drags. Had it focused solely on Lucy and Nick’s relationship, it could have been a rom-com winner.

Mulan (out now on Disney+)

And we can say unequivocally that Mulan is not only the best Disney remake yet but perhaps better than the original. A bold statement, but one we stand by.

What makes Mulan so special is, as was promised, the way it hews closer to the original Ballad of Mulan than the Disney original did, and the themes it chooses to explore in a more obvious way. There is no room for manoeuvring: Mulan is a feminist story both subtly and overtly.

Read our full Mulan review

Already released

Tenet

On first watch though, Tenet likely would have benefited from some breathing space. It does truly put you in the shoes of the Protagonist, learning the world as he goes along, but it can be all a bit overwhelming for the viewer.

The result is that as impressive as the craftsmanship and originality of Tenet is, other aspects of the movie prove to be frustrating. It’s still a great movie and a true big-screen experience, but it does stop it reaching the heights of Nolan’s best work.

Read our full Tenet review

Spree

Joe Keery is sensational in the role and when Spree works, it’s thanks to him. Kurt is a believably tragic figure obsessed with online status, someone who believes that the only validation of his existence comes from social media stats.

What lets Spree down is that it often feels like a short movie that’s been stretched too thin, even for its 90-minute runtime.

Read our full Spree review

An American Pickle

The first and last thirds of An American Pickle are by far the best, watching Seth Rogen play off Seth Rogen is consistently delightful.

These are the moments where slapstick humour is abandoned in favour of genuine sentiment laced through with awkwardness that makes it relatable and real and, most importantly, funny.

Read our full An American Pickle review

Summerland

Those who are keen to use the word schmaltzy to describe Summerland aren’t wrong, but sometimes schmaltzy is good. Summerland leans into that sentimental feeling just enough to make your heart swell, pulling back just before you roll your eyes.

And then there are the twists. We won’t get into them here, but there are some big ones. What we can tell you is Gemma Arterton was as shocked as we were.

Read our full Summerland review

SCOOB!

Having skipped cinemas due to the current global situation, SCOOB! has finally arrived on UK shores after its US release back in May – although it doesn’t quite prove worth the wait.

The CGI reboot starts with lifelong friends Scooby-Doo and Shaggy meeting the first time, going on to set up Mystery Inc with Fred, Velma and Daphne. Cut to several cases (and years) later, and Mystery Inc face their most challenging mystery yet as they attempt to stop Dick Dastardly and his villainous plan. (Yep, it’s a Hanna-Barbera shared universe!)

SCOOB! does a great job in updating the original animation to vibrant and colourful 3D, remaining faithful to the original designs. Elsewhere though, the movie is less reverent to the Scooby-Doo we know as Mystery Inc find themselves facing a very real threat, involving Cerberus and a whole lot of robots. It means that this version lacks the goofy charm and the convoluted plot doesn’t justify the change. There’s no denying that Dastardly’s small robots, called Rottens, are super cute though.

Where SCOOB! does work well though is in the interaction between Scooby and Shaggy which brings frequent laughs. The script doesn’t quite get the mix right between adult gags and child-friendly humour, but there are a lot of jokes packed in to ensure it’s rarely dull. It’s just a shame that SCOOB! is too busy elsewhere to make this an outright hit.

The Old Guard

With the always-brilliant Charlize Theron in the lead, The Old Guard proves to be the comic book movie to beat in 2020 – and it could even teach Marvel and DC a thing or two.

Read our full The Old Guard review

Greyhound

Greyhound isn’t bad exactly, it just isn’t very moving. It takes something special to make a straightforward movie about World War Two that resonates with you long after the credits roll (did we mention Dunkirk?), and unfortunately this isn’t one of them.

Read our full Greyhound review

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