CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?
DIRECTOR MARIELLE HELLER
STARRING MELISSA McCARTHY, RICHARD E. GRANT, JANE CURTIN
RELEASE DATE FEBRUARY 2019
Melissa McCarthy, best known as an Emmy-winning comedy actress for her appearances on Saturday Night Live, as well as for her film roles in Bridesmaids (2011) and Ghostbusters (2016), shifts gears to brilliant effect and quietly dazzles in this slightly melancholic, often slyly funny, true story of a troubled writer’s descent into forgery and deceit.
Based on a memoir by Lee Israel, it has McCarthy as a struggling 50-something writer who, despite some modest success, feels her talents are unrecognised. Having lost a dead-end job, unable to connect romantically, and anxious both about her ailing cat and an eviction notice, she decides to turn to the literary dark side, using her genuine skill with words to forge letters from notable literary celebrities, bringing in both much-needed cash and final, if secret, vindication in her confidence as a wordsmith.
Director Marielle Heller isn’t so much interested in the crime scheme but in Israel’s character and the trials and anguish of the writing life. Richard E. Grant (in what could be his best turn since Withnail & I) is value for money as her dandyish, equally dyspeptic friend, but it’s McCarthy’s film, and she’s terrific as the irascible, boozy writer who can be simultaneously sympathetic and infuriating. It all adds up to film about fakery that’s very much the real thing.
OUT OF BLUE
DIRECTOR CAROL MORLEY
STARRING PATRICIA CLARKSON, JAMES CAAN, TOBY JONES
RELEASE DATE MARCH 2019
Director Carol Morley’s stylish, neo-noir is based on the Martin Amis novel Night Train. The always-excellent Patricia Clarkson is Detective Mike Hoolihan, a New Orleans detective who investigates the brutal murder of an astrophysicist.
As Mike works on the case her own previous trauma begins to intrude, and reality becomes alarmingly permeable. With nods to the work of filmmakers such as David Lynch and Nicolas Roeg, Out Of Blue is going to be a must for film fans who enjoy a mystery, wrapped in a riddle, all boxed up in a humdinging enigma. It’s a darkly entertaining treat.
DIRECTORS ANNA BODEN, RYAN FLECK
STARRING BRIE LARSON, JUDE LAW, GEMMA CHAN, BEN MENDELSOHN
RELEASE DATE MARCH 2019
The latest arrival in the Marvel Universe is the female superhero we’ve all been waiting for. Set in the 1990s, the film has Brie Larson as Carol Danvers, an air force pilot who gains superhuman powers, only to find herself trapped in an intergalactic war between two alien races. Described as an action comedy by screenwriter Geneva Robertson-Dworet, it will also be a trip back in time for the Gen-Y crowd (in the trailer, Cap Marvel crashes into a Blockbuster video). “There are definitely homages to our favourite ’90s action films within Captain Marvel,” promises MCU overlord, Kevin Feige.