Features
Movies Not to Miss: May 2016


Date Posted: 30 April 2016


Which of these are you going to watch?

As May marches us closer to the summer releases, the blockbuster schedule isn't letting up if it is not just getting started. With some of the major superhero movies of the year already released to varying degrees of satisfaction, May is a breather year with only one movie from the Marvel universe that isn't from Marvel Studios.

However, that doesn't mean that May doesn't have anything to offer for the serious film goers as there are a couple of promising releases, and the French Film Festival will be having its 15th edition at local cinemas! But those who are looking for the standard fare of genres, there some of those too, and Tamil and Hindi movie audiences will find a good pickings this month as well.

So to turn on the heat, here are the movies not to miss this May!

Mother's Day

May wouldn't be May if we didn't celebrate Mother's Day and what better time to release a movie on that important day? From director Frank Marshall who has already given us movies to mark the occasion of "Valentine's Day" and "New Year's Eve", him bringing together an ensemble cast to star as mothers; Jennifer Aniston, Kate Hudson and Julia Roberts almost seems too natural. Famed for bringing together an all-star cast, only to fully under-utilise them for an easygoing outing in his last two films, we don't suspect that "Mother's Day" would be any different. But hey, just as how your mother wouldn't mind whatever you bought for her on Mother's Day, it's the thought that counts when you bring her to see this, if not too ogle at Jason Sudekis.

General Release Date: 5 May

Book of Love

Romance sequels are rare these days and it's even more rare to get two of them in the same month. While it's hard not to choose the sequel to one of the most defining Korean romance comedy (that puts laughter and tears in equal measure) in "My New Sassy Girl", it is the rehashing of the story with a new girl in Victoria Song that has shaken our faith in it.

So instead, we decided to go for the spiritual sequel to 2013's "Finding Mr. Right". Bringing back Tang Wei and Wu Xiubo to play as a different couple, but with equally complicated circumstances, "Book of Love" is set to spark the same chemistry between the two leads and it's always great to see the beautiful couple.

General Release Date: 5 May

Traffic

We like our Bollywood movies to be as grand as our dreams and May's selection certainly offers those, whether you are looking for the time-traveling musical actioner of Vikram Kumar's "24", or the nail-biting thriller of Sarath's kidnapping drama "Ko 2". Our pick favors the heartwarming facts over the hardening fictional with the based-on-true-story "Traffic". Based on actual events that happened in Chennai, a girl in desperate need of a heart transplant has her hopes up when a recently deceased man is determined to be brain dead after an accident. However, the challenge came to transport the heart to the hospital when all avenues of delivering it are cut off except by road; 150 kilometers of road through the traffic rush. Already released in its native India in 2011, five years is not too late to see "Traffic", which is often hailed as one of the first works of the Malayalam New Wave, by director Rajesh Pillai who passed away this year due to liver disease.

General Release Date: 6 May

High Strung

Malaysians who have been pumped up for dance movies after last month's "Showdown the Movie", might be looking for what's new in the genre. And in comes "High Strung"; combining classical ballet and street dancing with an accompaniment of classical musical instruments. Sure the trailer looks like it's a rehashing of the story from the first "Step Up", but it's the daring proposition of "Step Up" plus a violin that we want to see where this is going. Besides it won't be just the dancers that will be having choreographed dance battles, but there will be fencing violinist as well; that's an unexpected combination of music and dance if we have seen one (maybe an a capella dance movie is in the works somewhere).

General Release Date: 12 May

Judi-Judi King Boss

From the king of B-grade Malaysian movies comes his most multiracial movie yet, showing us that Julian Cheah has no signs of stopping from making the movies he wants. While we would like to see how Raja Mukhriz Raja Ahmad Kamaruddin's horror outing "Harmonika" would match up against Syamsul Yusof's money pouring "Munafik", but we are taking our chances with the Penangite director's "Judi-Judi King Boss" that already feels like a less-offensive Namewee movie, only because we admire his stoic and shameless filmmaking spirit, and him telling us who is boss when it comes to his own movies.

General Release Date: 12 May

The Angry Birds Movie

One of the most recognisable video games in recent years; Angry Birds, finally gets a movie! Already differentiating itself from its silently slinging mobile game counterpart (and TV animation series) with an admirable voice cast led by Jason Sudeikis with Josh Gad, Peter Dinklage, Keegan-Michael Key, Danny McBride, Sean Penn and Bill Hader, the winds seem to be blowing to win favors with their trailers. It will be up to screenwriter Jon Vitti and co-directors Clay Kaytis and Fergal Reilly's structure to turn these colorful birds into colorful characters, and if these this epic war between birds and pigs is able to smash box office barriers, Sony will have a strong franchise to throw in the animation field in years to come.

General Release Date: 12 May

X-Men: Apocalypse

Just as a new phase is starting for Marvel Studios and a new DC cinematic universe at Warner Bros, Fox is wrapping an arguably better and well deserved X-Men trilogy. While early fan reactions towards one of the most iconic (and invincible) villains in the X-Men universe from the behind-the-scenes sneak peeks reached almost to a frothing point, the trailers have come tell us that you can't judge a movie by its set photos. As the identity of the Four Horsemen are revealed serving a mutant that is literally named the Apocalypse, the young X-Men, led by Jennifer Lawrence and James McAvoy (with a little help for a certain Wolverine), are in for a movie showdown that will hopefully wipe out our memories of "X-Men: The Last Stand" (and maybe also the rebooted "Fantastic Four")

General Release Date: 19 May

Demolition

Jake Gyllenhaal has been an actor to watch, even more so after his groundbreaking performance for "Nightcrawler". In "Demolition" for director Jean-Marc Vallée, who completed the rise of the McConaissance, Gyllenhaal plays as a widower who finds himself unable to grieve for his wife's death, until he begins taking apart the home that they had lived in together. While the role seemed almost perfect for the depth that needs to be reached by an actor of Gyllenhaal's caliber to shine and oust another performance, the Vallée magic hasn't seem to touch it just as with Reese Witherspoon in "Wild". Still, that's still not reason enough to not want to see a great performer working with a great director, even if the sum is not larger than its parts, and you can still appreciate the story with just one of them.

General Release Date: 26 May

The Nice Guys

We didn't get to groove into the 70s with Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice", but we certainly don't mind having "The Nice Guys" as a replacement for that. If we weren't already amused by the pairing of a mustached Ryan Gosling with an oversized Russel Crowe with a bad attitude, we certainly enjoyed the offbeat violent comedy vibe we got getting from the trailers, as we should have expected from director Shane Black. While there's certainly not a lot of nice guys in "The Nice Guys", but it has got plenty of entertaining violence, chemistry and other cool stuff.

General Release Date: 26 May

Writer: Casey Lee





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