Love bleeds into life through a dreamy Brixton haze in Raine Allen-Miller’s Rye Lane, which must be far and away the best British romcom in some time. It’s a vibrant, audacious affair, thrumming with colour and exciting diversity of beats. Right from the off, via an aerial flight over a row of unisex lavatories, Rye Lane revels in its own strange and alluring beauty. The experience is all encompassing, a rush of overwhelming sensory engagement, but thoroughly intimate. It’s the sort of closeness that comes only when a film feels something of the love its story tells.
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A veritable clutch of genre tropes vie for dominance in Champions, a winning feel gooder from Dumb and Dumber’s Bobby Farrelly. It’s a Dodgeball-esque underdog narrative, a will they/won’t they romance, redemption tale and sports comedy. No path followed here has not many times been well trodden before. That’s not to say the film fails to charm. A script by Mark Rizzo – adapted from Javier Fesser’s Spanish original: Campeones – delivers big on the belly laughs, even as it stumbles through inevitable pitfalls. The heart certainly leaves Champions several notches warmer.
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Just four years on from his Star Wars swan song, Adam Driver’s return to intergalactic space hopping is…well, it’s underwhelming. A half baked elevator pitch, cut to the core for the benefit of a palatably brief runtime. The result is a choppy editorial mess. A film laden with seismic holes. That’s even before the ‘catastrophic asteroid’ strikes.
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