It's quite the quality weekend at the cinema, with Teen Titans Go! To the Movies, Ant-Man and The Wasp and Sicilian Ghost Story among the new films on screens.
Sicilian Ghost Story *****
Fabio Grassadonia and Antonio Piazza's masterful, eerie film is a Mafia-fused slow burner which skilfully weds fantasy and reality, as a young boy goes missing in Sicily.
Sicilian Ghost Story's modus operandi is long panning shots of the hilly landscape, carefully framed images of woodland creatures, a rat in the forest, hovering birds and meticulously observed studies of the human subjects concerned.
Put simply, a work of cinematic genius. Read our full review here.
Teen Titans Go! To the Movies ****
Centred on the premise that absolutely every superhero gets their own movie, this oh-so-meta big screen outing for the Teen Titans instantly surpasses most of the films it sends up along the way as Robin and co. try to get their movie made and be seen as more than 'just sidekicks'.
The storyline itself is less important in the grand scheme of things, with the self-parody and fourth wall-breaking antics so enjoyable that the loose plot really just serves as a means to an end to get in all of the fart jokes, Easter eggs and witty one-liners.
At a concise 84 minutes this film does that rare thing of leaving the audience wanting more. Read our full review here.
Ant-Man and the Wasp ****
Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly and pals summon the spirits of Saturday morning TV for a catch-your-breath chase movie with the same age-reversing properties as their 2015 charmer. Little wonder indeed.
Two years on from the events in Captain America: Civil War, Scott Lang/Ant-Man (Rudd) is under house arrest when he has to break the law (again!) and help out Hope van Dyne/Wasp (Lilly) and physicist father Hank Pym (Douglas) in matters pertaining to "confusing grown-up stuff", aka The Quantum Realm.
Damascus Cover **
Jonathan Rhys Meyers deserves a better script and so does everybody else in this creaky vehicle, based on a Howard Kaplan novel from 1977 that trundles along passably but somehow unsatisfactorily, too.
Looking like a man who would not say no to a Bond role or two sometime in the near future, Meyers acquits himself as well as he can in this lumbering vehicle.
It's a movie that tries to marry the sinister solemnities of John Le Carré with the jumpy, pumped-up derring-do of, well, your standard Bond movie. Is there such an entity as a 'standard Bond movie?' Discuss. Read our full review here.
Mission: Impossible - Fallout ****1/2
The sixth Mission: Impossible movie and probably the best, Fallout is far more than the impressive/obsessive Tom Cruise stunts. For starters, Rogue Nation director/writer Christopher McQuarrie is the first helmer to be asked back, and - remarkably - he's taken the template to an even higher level than his dynamic 2015 debut.
The conflict between personal loyalties and the common good is at the centre of it all, with Henry Cavill (interviewed below) joining regulars such as Cruise, Ving Rhames and Simon Pegg as August Winter, a CIA assassin who is embedded with the Impossible Missions Force (IMF) as they endeavour to retrieve some stolen plutonium and, y'know, save the world.
Rebecca Ferguson and Michelle Monaghan reprise their roles as former MI6 agent Ilsa Faust and Ethan Hunt's ex-wife Julia, while Angela Bassett and Vanessa Kirby swell the impressive female presence as CIA director Erika Sloane and the duplicitous Alana, aka The White Widow. Read our full review here.
Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation ***
Dracula and co. are back for another Transylvanian adventure and the franchise still bubbles with enough colour and silliness to stay afloat for this seaside outing.
Worried that her dad is under too much stress running the hotel, Mavis (Selena Gomez) decides to book Dracula (Adam Sandler) and their entire family on a monster-friendly cruise around the Bermuda Triangle.
While relaxation was the aim of the game, nobody bargained for the love story that was to come when Dracula falls for the ship's captain Erikha (Kathryn Hahn). But the course of true love doesn't run smoothly and all isn't as it seems on board. Read our full review here.