While a lot of our sources of entertainment are heading back to at least some sense of normality, some folks may still be uncertain about going to the cinema. Some cinemas have reopened already, some not for another few weeks...
Some cinemas are showing some classic blockbusters, to make up for the fact that this week is the week we were all supposed to be watching Christopher Nolan’s latest sci-fi action-thriller Tenet. A lot of the big 2020 blockbusters have been pushed back further, as at the time of writing Tenet is set to be released on August 12th, Mulan on August 19th, A Quiet Place Part II on September 4th, and so on…
So you might be thinking there is nothing new to see in the cinemas until then, but there actually are some new movies coming out before then. Sure, they’re not going to be on the same scale as some of the biggest blockbusters of the year, but if you’re a movie lover as much as we are, then that shouldn’t matter to you at all.
The first new release we’re going to talk about is Black Water: Abyss, which is basically what you get if you put The Descent and Crawl into a blender. It revolves around a group of adventurous folk hunting down a new cave system in North Australia, only for a sudden rainstorm to trap them in there. Of course they aren’t in there alone, as they soon discover there is a hungry crocodile trapped in there with them, and it begins violently picking them off one by one.
It is the sequel to a 2007 true-life horror movie we’ve never heard of, and stars a collection of actors we didn’t recognise (one of them kind of looks like a lesser Hemsworth). Five minutes in and you can guess the order they’re going to die in, it is THAT kind of movie. Which, to be fair, is probably exactly what you’re looking for; a proper “turn your brain off for 90 minutes” kind of deal.
Will you remember it a year from now? No. Will you even remember it a week from now? Probably not. But for cheap, trashy jump-scares, it does the job. Go in knowing that it is essentially a dodgy, rickety ghost-train, and you can’t have your expectations dashed too much. The movie has been released in some cinemas since Friday July 10th, and other cinemas will be showing it as they open in the coming days and weeks.
Check out the trailer for it here:
The second new release is Stage Mother, which couldn’t be more different to Black Water: Abyss if it tried.
Two-time Oscar-nominee Jacki Weaver stars as a conservative, religious Southern State mother who finds out that her estranged son has died suddenly from a drug overdose. Flying up to San Francisco for his funeral, she discovers that she has inherited a drag bar from him, and soon finds herself entangled in the lives of the people who knew him and loved him. Before long she takes it upon herself to revamp the drag bar entirely and make it a success in his honour.
Rarely has a film been this underwritten and, oddly, under-directed but still managed to be a success, and that almost singularly comes down to Weaver’s brilliant performance. Watching her become reacquainted with her now dead son through the eyes of his grieving boyfriend (Adrian Grenier – remember him? From The Devil Wears Prada??) and their best friend (Lucy Liu, stealing every scene she’s in) is both heartwarming and heartbreaking, and while the script doesn’t give her too many one-liners to dish out, the few she does get she delivers with panache.
While the movie does tackle some very heavy topics, from drug abuse to domestic violence to the difficulties surrounding gender reassignment surgeries, even in those darkest moments it is never too far away from big musical number or a sassy drag queen throwing shade at an audience member. The movie is due for release in Irish cinemas from Friday 24th August, and you can check out the trailer for it right here:
As mentioned, not all cinemas will be hosting these new movies, or even releasing them on the same days, so make sure to check with your local cinema for times and release dates.