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Strong women can be found throughout all the new films we are covering this week as two cinema releases and another two DVD releases show the spectrum of ways in which characters can inspire audiences. Whether its a musical icon from the past, a fictional account of motivation and rebirth or one of cinema's most iconic villains, all these stories seem like they could only be told in the contemporary world of film.
Safety is of course at the forefront of everyone's mind right now so make sure to check out the specific guidelines for your local cinema before visiting. Meanwhile, many cinemas have used lockdown as an opportunity to improve and renovate their venues so that we can all enjoy the best possible cinema experience.
Named after the song that Aretha Franklin is most associated with, this is a biopic is filled with some amazing musical numbers whilst also aiming to explore the hardships and abuse faced by women in the entertainment industry. Beginning in 1952 and following her career throughout the second half of the 20th century, Respect is the story of Aretha Franklin, one of America's most iconic singer/songwriters. After her father discovers her magnificent vocal range during a visit to church at 10 years-old, Aretha's career begins to take off. An unsteady relationship with her father and an outwardly abusive one with her husband and manager Ted White threatens to overshadow her music but Aretha perseveres despite the volatility of racial injustice sweeping through America during this time.
Herself is an emotional, crowd-pleasing drama which nevertheless features serious and pertinent themes around escaping domestic abuse and community spirit. It follows Sandra, who lives in Dublin and is a mum of two young daughters. After fleeing from an abusive relationship, she seeks to provide refuge for her family. When it becomes clear that the local council won't be able to provide her with a home, she decides to build one herself in the garden space offered to her by a friend. Although she must juggle two part-time jobs as a carer and a bartender, as well as navigating a new relationship with her ex-partner who still has visitation rights, and despite the fact she has no experience related to manual labour, Sandra is able to embrace her new way of living through the help afforded to her by the close-knit community around her.
The summer saw a wide variety of releases and whilst these two films are wildly different, they will be looked back upon as being vital during the reopening of cinemas post-pandemic and are now available for your film club to order. First, a live-action prequel to Disney's 101 Dalmatians follows the peculiar beginnings of the iconic villain Cruella de Vil. Formerly known as Estella, the young fashionista grew up orphaned and in poverty, with her dreams of becoming a renowned designer giving her a sense of hope. Now at the start of her career, Cruella roams 70s London with two new friends, thieves Jasper and Horace, in the hope of catching her big break. This fun and stylish origin story looks at one of cinema's most significant villains and asks questions surrounding morality and finding oneself.
A Quiet Place Part II meanwhile is a long-awaited sequel to the widely popular Part One, which saw a family attempting to survive on an earth that has been overrun by bloodthirsty alien monsters who are attracted to sound. The story resumes the day after the events of the previous film on Day 474 of the alien attacks. After being driven out of their home, the remaining members of the family, and some mysterious new characters, discover a radio signal which plays the song ‘Beyond the Sea' on a loop and surmise it must be a message meant to lead survivors to a nearby island. A Quiet Place Part II retains the tension, suspense and set-pieces of the original while expanding the world of the franchise.
Stream on Into Film+ Premium
Origin story of the Disney villain Cruella de Vil as she seeks a career in London as a young fashion designer.
Age group11–16 years
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