Jonathan Safran Foer’s novel revisited the deadliest act of terrorism committed on American soil through the eyes of a nine-year-old boy.
British director Stephen Daldry now brings that haunting story to the cinema, aware of the sensitive touch required. Oskar Schell (Thomas Horn) loses his father Thomas (Tom Hanks) in the 9/11 terrorist attacks, shattering the happy home of his mother Linda (Sandra Bullock).
When his father was alive, they played a scavenger hunt game looking for clues throughout New York City. An old key found in a smashed vase convinces the youngster that Thomas has left him a clue from beyond the grave.
A late-night encounter with the mute, elderly man (Max von Sydow) provides Oskar with an unlikely accomplice for the search.
GHOST RIDER: SPIRIT OF VENGEANCE 3D (12A)
Nicolas Cage reprises his role as a motorcycle rider condemned to do the devil’s bidding in this action-driven sequel directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor. Johnny Blaze (Cage) is wrestling with the curse of Ghost Rider and he goes into exile, hoping to keep his fiery alter ego under wraps. But things don’t go to plan when good friend and sidekick Moreau (Idris Elba) unexpectedly makes contact to ask for help protecting a gifted child called Danny.
Rating: Hell bent on another sequel. 6/10
THE ARTIST (PG)
Writer-director Michel Hazanavicius steps back to the early part of the 20th century, when handsome and romantically unattached screen idol George Valentin (Jean Dujardin) is setting hearts aflutter. On the set of his latest production, George meets aspiring starlet Peppy Miller (Berenice Bejo) and he is smitten. With the advent of sound, George’s fortunes wane and Peppy’s star ascends into the stratosphere to the delight of cigar-smoking studio boss Zimmer (John Goodman).
Rating: Silence is truly golden. 9/10
THE MUPPETS (U)
A Muppet called Walter lives with his human brother Gary (Jason Segel) and his girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams). The they discover that a scheming oil man plans to bulldoze the Muppet Theatre and drill for the black gold that lies beneath. The only way to thwart him is to rally the troops. Enter Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo and the gang who organise a televised appeal in the company of celebrity guests including Whoopi Goldberg and Selena Gomez.
Rating: All hail the furry friends. 8.5/10
THE WOMAN IN BLACK (12A)
Solicitor Arthur Kipps (Daniel Radcliffe) is haunted by the death of his wife and seeks refuge in his love for their three-year-old son but his work suffers as a consequence. He’s despatched to the remote village of Crythin Gifford where he must prove himself by attending to the papers of the recently deceased owner of Eel Marsh House. The locals try to ward him off with tales of a mysterious woman dressed all in black, who is blamed for the deaths of children in the village.
Rating: Be afraid, be very afraid. 6/10
THE VOW (12A)
Leo (Channing Tatum) glimpses Paige (Rachel McAdams) in a queue and uses his charm and good looks to secure a memorable first date. They fall in love and marry but after a car accident Leo survives relatively unscathed and Paige loses her memory. As Paige comes to terms with her condition, her estranged parents exploit her misfortune to make amends for past mistakes and woo her back home whilst she gravitates towards her old flame, the last man she can remember with affection.
Rating: Never too late for Valentine’s. 6/10
Andrew Detmer is powerless to help his terminally ill mother and weathering beatings from his father and bullying at school. Soon after Andrew, his cousin and only friend Matt and high school golden boy Steve discover a strange artefact in a crater they are blessed with powers of flight, telekinesis and invulnerability. At first, they employ the new-found abilities for laddish amusement, but once Andrew’s rage takes control it’s only a matter of time before the darkness completely envelops him.
Rating: When super heroes go wrong. 6.5/10