Previews: Peter Rabbit Featurette, Ferdinand, More!

Lots to see in this week’s preview of coming attractions, including a new Peter Rabbit featurette, Ferdinand, Smallfoot, and more…

Peter Rabbit Featurette

This Peter Rabbit featurette wisely introduces the wider cast of the film. With James Corden receiving bad publicity recently, Sony uses this feature to shift focus to other cast members. Corden is joined by Daisy Ridley, Margot Robbie, and Domhnall Gleeson in this big-screen adaptation of Beatrix Potter’s work. Peter Rabbit will be released on 16th March 2018.

Ferdinand Clip

This is a clip from upcoming animated adventure Ferdinand. The film is about a bull who is mistaken for a dangerous beast, and taken from his home. The voice cast includes John Cena, Kate Kate McKinnon, and Gina Rodriguez. Ferdinand will hit the big screen on 9th December 2017.

The Greatest Showman Featurette

This featurette for The Greatest Showman focuses on Zac Efron, and what attracted him to work on the film. The Greatest Showman is an original musical about P.T. Barnum and the birth of show business. Hugh Jackman leads the cast, and is joined by Efron, Michelle Williams, and Zendaya. The Greatest Showman will be released in cinemas on 26th December 2017.

Smallfoot Poster

Here is the new poster for Smallfoot. The film is an animated adventure about a yeti who finds something he didn’t think existed – a human. The film is directed by Karey Kirkpatrick, director of Over the Hedge. Smallfoot features the voices of Channing Tatum, Zendaya, Common, and Danny DeVito. The film is set for release on 5th October 2018.

The Mercy Trailer

The Mercy is director James Marsh’s (The Theory of Everything) latest film. The film tells the true story of an amateur sailor in the late 1960s, who hopes to be the first person in history to single-handedly circumnavigate the globe without stopping. The film stars Colin Firth, Rachel Weisz, and David Thewlis. The Mercy will be released on 9th February 2018.

Film Review: Weiner-Dog


Todd Solondz Wiener-Dog is an immensely entertaining black comedy. Some segments of the film charm more than others, but overall the film is very enjoyable viewing.

A dachshund passes from various owners, each with their own idiosyncrasies. The little dog impacts their lives, as he is passed from a family to a veterinary nurse, from an odd couple to a screenwriter…

Writer-director Todd Solondz delivers another black comedy which swiftly veers from humour to tragedy. Weiner-Dog works so well because Solondz captures his characters succinctly and successful. Each of the vignettes is distinctive, yet features the same brand of black comedy.

Weiner-Dog is divided into a series of short stories, each featuring the same cute dog. Some of these vignettes are more memorable than others. The film starts strong with a young boy getting his dog, despite the reluctance of his mother. This sequence sets up the tone of the film effectively. Solondz paints his film with some bleak ideas. It is the humour surrounding the darkness which makes the film enjoyable. There are some serious themes throughout the film, yet the light touch approach makes these palatable.

The veterinary nurse sequence is as sweet as it is odd. The vignette with the script writer at film school will prove most amusing for those who have experienced similar situations to those portrayed. The penultimate scene will satisfy only those with the darkest of humour. The prolonged duration will feel unnecessary for other viewers. There are some glorious shots in Weiner-Dog, not least the slow-motion interlude in the first segment. The intermission is charming in its silliness.

The ensemble cast of the film do a good job of inhabiting their characters. Kieran Culkin and Greta Gerwig work well together in their story. Julie Delpy is suitably priggish in the opening segment, a good contrast to joy of Keaton Nigel Cooke. Danny DeVito’s weariness perfectly suits his character.

The humour of Weiner-Dog will not thrill everyone, but it is wonderful fun for those who like their comedy black.

Film Review: The Lorax

An animated adaptation of the Dr Seuss story, The Lorax is entertaining family fare with a good message.

Ted, a young boy living in Thneed-Ville, is in love with his neighbour Audrey. When she mentions that she would like a real tree, Ted sets off on a mission to find one in world filled with artificial trees. To find a tree, Ted visits the Once-ler, who lives outside of town. The Once-ler tells Ted what happened to all the trees…

The Lorax does not quite capture the same style and tone as the Dr Seuss book it is based on. Nonetheless, this can be said of the other film adaptations of his work, which have not quite captured the imagination present in these books. Although the film retains the same characters and themes, the narrative is padded out to fit the requirements of a feature-length production.

The humour in The Lorax works fine, although more comedy would have been welcome. The environmental theme is most unambiguous. There is a stark contrast between nature-supporting characters and big-business mentality. Given the audience the film is aimed at, the distinct depictions are not surprising. Some may argue that a big film company such as Universal are in a precarious position with this commentary on the greed of corporations. However, any company that could make a similar impact are likely to be as involved in business as this company.

There are a few songs in The Lorax, none of which are particularly catchy or memorable. The opening sequence is however an effective introduction to the town which the film is set in. The final sequence feels a bit prolonged; making it more succinct would not have distorted the message.

The Lorax offers a visually sumptuous depiction of the forest. The animation is great in these sequences; there seems to be real texture to the trees. Danny DeVito is well cast as the voice of the title character. Ed Helms is entertaining as The Once-ler, while Zac Efron can get away with voicing young Ted.

The Lorax is likely to appeal to young children. Parents will find the values it extols difficult to argue with.

The Lorax Trailer

Everyone loves Dr Seuss, don’t they? Film adaptation of Dr Seuss’ stories have not been too amazing so far, but there’s still hope. The Lorax, which is due for release on 27th July 2012, is produced by Illumination Entertainment. The company were responsible for Hop and Despicable Me, which suggests a good calibre. Animation in the above trailer looks lush, and the film features the voices of Danny DeVito, Zac Efron and Ed Helms.