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Alex B Cann at the movies: Mean Girls, One Love, Madame Webb and The Taste of Things

I uttered a few choice words on Monday evening, when I was grabbing a quick shower before going to catch a preview screening of Wicked Little Letters and I lost my balance.

Long story short, I'll be reviewing this new release in my next column, as my fall left me rather blushing and bruised. I'll be sticking to baths for the foreseeable future.

This week, I can recommend Mean Girls (2024), which has been out for a month and is still showing at Cineworld Ashton for the next week. It's a five star triumph for me, best enjoyed if you don't mind musicals and don't compare it too closely to the original (for my money, it's a lot more fun!). Tina Fey has done a fantastic job of overhauling an already likeable script, and brought in a cracking cast topped by Avantika as Karen (her Halloween song is a highlight). I also loved Jaquel Spivey as Damien and Renee Rap as Regina in particular. It made me smile lots, the choreography is outstanding, and it kept my attention throughout. Watch on October 3rd (Mean Girls Day) if not before! Hard to believe the original was released 20 years ago. Elements of social media are brought into this one, but it still feels timeless and a whole bundle of fun. A real surprise how much I enjoyed it.

Disappointment of the week was Bob Marley : One Love, which just wasn't that interesting, given the incredible subject matter. Whilst Kingsley Ben Adir has clearly watched a lot of Bob Marley YouTube videos to perfect his mannerisms and movements, the timeline felt clumsy and some of the acting a little hammy. The incredible act of bringing together rival political leaders on stage at a big concert in Jamaica kind of happened as a throwaway moment at the end, and there were even a few key songs missing from the soundtrack. It never really got out of second gear for my money, sadly. A special mention though for Lashana Lynch as Rita Marley, who is a real standout, and Marley's music is always a real pleasure to hear in any context. A true inspirational individual.

And Madame Web has had a savaging from the critics. I'm not sure if I'm in the wrong here, but I rather liked it. A standalone Spiderman-esque story, starring Dakota Johnson as Cassandra Webb. She can foresee events just before they happen, and it's all to do with a spider that her mother was trying to find decades earlier. The plot is clearly a bit daft, it's all very over-the-top, and it doesn't really need to be seen in IMAX, but it definitely deserves a couple of hours of your time. Marvel have really been churning them out lately, but this is definitely not one of their worst efforts.

Next week, I'll try again to make it to see the new Olivia Coleman movie, plus The Taste Of Things, which features lots of sumptuous food and I'd best not watch on an empty stomach.


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