In cinemas this week: Black Mass, Learning to Drive and Miss You Already.
Black Mass – In 1970s South Boston, FBI Agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) persuades Irish mobster James “Whitey” Bulger (Johnny Depp) to collaborate with the FBI and eliminate a common enemy: the Italian mob. The drama tells the story of this unholy alliance, which spiraled out of control, allowing Whitey to evade law enforcement, consolidate power, and become one of the most ruthless and powerful gangsters in Boston history. Scott Cooper has directed two underrated films before this – Crazy Heart and Out of the Furnace – so I am interested in this for his involvement. The supporting cast is very strong, too.
Miss You Already – They say opposites attract. Milly (Toni Collette) is the woman who has everything: a successful career; a rock-star husband and two beautiful children. Her best friend is Jess (Drew Barrymore), she works in a community garden; lives in a boathouse with her boyfriend Jago and desperately wants a baby. Friends since childhood Jess and Milly can’t remember a time they didn’t share everything – secrets, clothes, even boyfriends, their differences are the glue that binds them together. That is until Milly is hit with the life changing news that she has breast cancer and needs Jess’s support more than ever. As Jess tries to balance her own life as well as being there for Milly it is only a matter of time before the pressure on their bond takes its toll.
Learning to Drive – Isabel Coixet’s slice-of-life comedy/drama Learning to Drive stars Patricia Clarkson as Wendy, a middle-ages book critic who is shattered when her husband Ted (Jake Weber) leaves her. In order to visit her daughter (Grace Gummer), who lives upstate, Wendy begins taking driving lessons from Darwan (Ben Kingsley) an American citizen originally from India who makes a living as a cabbie and giving driving lessons. The two strike-up a friendship that helps her learn to take control of her life, and him adjust to his new life after an arranged marriage.
Weekly Recommendation: Not a particularly interesting week, but I am committed to seeing Black Mass. It looks to be the best of an unusually thin lineup. I still have a few others I would like to catch up with; notably Cut Snake and The Visit, and if you haven’t yet seen Sicario or The Martian make them your priority.