Bad Neighbours 2 (2016)

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Aka Neighbours 2:  Sorority Rising.  They’re back! Well, everyone’s gone and grown up. Sort of. Opening on a horribly vomitous sex scene, Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne realise they’re having another baby. They’re trying to sell their house and it’s in escrow now which they do not understand even when the realtor tries to explain. All they know is their toddler daughter keeps playing with a pink dildo in front of people. Meanwhile, Zac Efron’s bestie Dave Franco is getting married. To a guy. So he has to move out of their place and has nowhere to go – except back to the old frat house, where some bolshie girls led by Chloe Grace Moretz want to set up an alt-sorority so they can party righteously. He mentors them until they dump him while he’s lecturing them (they do it on their phones). So he teams up with Seth and Rose to get rid of the girls in order that their house sale goes through. There ensues … total mayhem! Screamingly funny, flat out gross out, hilarious, physical, bad taste comedy. Five buckets of money, that’s all you need. For anything! Party on, rad dudettes! Written by Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, Andrew Jay Cohen, Brendan O’Brien and director Nicholas Stoller.

A Date for Mad Mary (2016)

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Darren Thornton’s adaptation (with his brother Colin) of his stage play is surprising: a female-centred comic drama set in the Irish Republic with the tangled knot of long-term friendship at its heart. Mary McArdle (Seana Kerslake) returns to her working class terraced home in Drogheda after a short stint in prison and the first person she wants to see is her best friend Charlene (Charleigh Bailey) who’s getting married in three weeks and she’s her maid of honour. Charlene never visited her and now expects her to turn up for fittings and sort out all the wedding things and Mary is miffed that Formerly Fat Leona is her other bridesmaid and she got a plus one – but Mary doesn’t because she never has a date. Then she meets wedding videographer Jess (Tara Lee) and they become friends while Mary dates any number of no-hopers and signs up with an agency looking for someone to accompany her to the wedding, which creates all kinds of complications when bridezilla Charleigh bumps into her meeting a gay guy for the first time just as they’re agreeing to go to other people’s weddings. Mary’s feelings for Jess confuse her and we learn from an online video just how she wound up in prison and in the fast food joint where she works her victim shows up and both are shocked by the experience – Mary flashes to the scarred face and is horrified by the consequences of her mad behaviour. Her up and down friendship with Charlene hits a major bump when she presents her with her own speech for the big day – and she finally hears just how badly people have suffered from her actions. She has a one night stand with Jess and everything contrives to trigger another night of madness … This is really a surprising, mature, funny, satisfying film with an amazing performance by Kerslake. Her relationships are realistic, empathetic and never dull. The foul language has an in-built critic in the text – everyone tells Mary to stop cursing – the story is told in inventive ways and everything harks back to the school yard but slowly everyone is growing up, however hard it may be and however much pride needs to be swallowed. This is worth catching.

Come Dance With Me! (1959)


It’s always good to see Brigitte Bardot, even in a lesser crime drama. She’s the young wife of the dentist (Henri Vidal) who has a one-night stand (with Dawn Addams) that is photographed in a bid to blackmail him. She follows him to the dance studio where the tryst took place and finds him with his lover’s corpse and a gun in his hand – then goes undercover as a teacher to root out the real culprit… Adieu, trystesse! Interesting for an excursion to a drag club, a gay villain and the performance of Serge Gainsbourg as Addams’ lover and it’s the final film of Vidal who died immediately after shooting. The dialogue is a little on the nose for what is essentially a comic mystery. But the more BB finds out, the more revealing her costumes become and she dances up a storm, as you’d expect from a trained ballerina. Gainsbourg sings the title song in a film which made less than BB’s previous hits yet she earned more than she ever had before in terms of salary, leading her producer, Raoul Levy, to sever their collaboration, claiming she was finished. Incroyable!

Love is Strange (2015)

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What happens when an old gay couple finally marry, it goes viral, the Catholic archdiocese finds out and unemployment follows and they have to sell up and move in with their devoted straight friends. Fun, sympathetic and immensely well performed by Alfred Molina and John Lithgow who play frustration with ingenuity. Low key and rewarding.