Movies: Black Panther, Early Man

Black Panther

This is another hit from the Marvel Studios folks.  This one explains generations of kings of the African nation of Wakanda, the secrets of the royal family and its court.  And there are more than a few who want to over throw the king and his family and so on…

The acting is quite good.  Chadwick Boseman makes a perfect King.  Michael B. Jordan is even better as the rival.  Lupita Nyong’o is great as the guardian warrior.  Forest Whitaker and Angela Bassett both deliver their characters.  There are at least another dozen actors that round out the cast.  The visual effects are quite remarkable.  The script is unique with several nice surprises.

Both critics and audiences like this film.  So did we.  It was refreshing, new, different and inventive.  We saw it on a giant screen at the Empire Theater on Leicester Square.  The film is rated PG-13 for prolonged scenes of action, violence and a brief rude gesture.  We noticed a sizable number of youngsters in the audience.  It is listed as an Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy.  It runs 2 hour, 15 minutes.

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Early Man

From the Aardman Animation Studios, this stop-motion animation is about the clash between the Stone Age and the Bronze Age.  The animators used 273 puppets in the production.  Its ultimate focus pits the two tribes in a “football”/”soccer” game and the stakes for the cave men is their home valley.  It’s no mistake the valley is Manchester!

It has the right mix of silly, naivete, charming and intelligence.  The commentaries on the then/now social culture are a hoot.

The leading voices include Eddie Redmayne as the voice of caveman Dug.  Tom Hiddleston is the voice of Lord Nooth.  Maisie Williams is the voice of Goona.  Timothy Spall is Chief Bobnar and Nick Park is the voice of Hobnob.  At least another dozen English actors round out the cast.

It’s rated PG for rude humor and some action but there is nothing there to keep the kids away.  In fact, in our audience, the kids got the puns and humor without missing a step.

The grenre is listed as Fantasy/Action.  It runs 1 hour, 40 minutes.

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