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Won’t you take us to the bioscope?


Won’t you take us to the bioscope?

The films opening in our cinemas this week

Critics’ choice

What it’s about
While collecting junk one day, best friends Sonny and Sam meet Slappy, a mischievous talking dummy from an unpublished Goosebumps book by RL Stine. Hoping to start his own family, Slappy kidnaps Sonny’s mother and brings all of his ghoulish friends back to life – just in time for Halloween. As the sleepy town becomes overrun with monsters, witches and other mysterious creatures, Sonny joins forces with his sister, Sam and a kindly neighbour to save Sonny’s mom and foil Slappy’s plan.
What people say
That rare beast: a fun, scary movie for kids that won’t actually terrify them. – Tara McNamara, Common Sense Media
It’s as frenzied as a sugar-fuelled youngster who’s had a few too many Halloween treats before bed. – Plugged In
What it’s about
After Academy Award-winning musical La La Land, Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle and star Ryan Gosling team up for First Man, the story of Nasa’s mission to land a man on the moon, focusing on Neil Armstrong and the years 1961-1969. A first-person account, based on the book by James R Hansen, the movie explores the sacrifices and the cost – on Armstrong and on the nation – of one of the most dangerous missions in history.
What people say
From the moment Armstrong takes his first step on the moon, Chazelle’s film exists on a plane of the purest mystery. – Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
An intimate and epic biopic fuelled by strong performances from its cast, as well as masterful craftsmanship by Chazelle. – Chris Agar, Screen Rant
What it’s about
Riley North awakens from a coma after surviving a brutal attack that killed her husband and daughter. When the system shields the murderers from justice, Riley sets out to transform herself from citizen to urban guerrilla. Channeling frustration into motivation, the young widow spends years in hiding, honing her mind, body and spirit to become an unstoppable force. Eluding the underworld, the police and the FBI, Riley embarks on a deadly quest to deliver her own personal brand of punishment.
What people say
What could have been an interesting gender twist on tried-and-true revenge fantasies devolves into a tone-deaf, uninteresting rip-off of much more compelling films. – Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Starring Jennifer Garner as a hard-working suburban mom turned avenging angel, the film is a belaboured exercise in lazily constructed déjà vu. – Aisha Harris, The NYTimes
What it’s about
After he moves to Scotland with his parents, only child Tony struggles to make friends at his new school. But he is bullied and picked on by the other boys, and has little hope of overcoming his miserable new life. Then he meets Rudolph, a kid vampire with whom Tony becomes very close. But, when Rudolph’s life and the future of the vampire race are threatened by a ruthless vampire hunter, Tony must find the courage to save his best friend.
What people say
It’s a limp affair throughout, drained of any substance. – John Higgins, Starburst
A low-budget cartoon with supernatural characters who aren’t so much undead as lifeless. – Edward Porter, Sunday Times (UK)

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