MICHAEL WINTERBOTTOM’S comedy starring Steve Coogan as a thinly veiled Philip Green does more than crack gags about fashion.
It is a biting swipe against money, power and, well, greed.
Coogan is Sir Richard McCreadie, a fashion tycoon on the cusp of turning 60 who needs a boost to his public profile after a public inquiry into his business and tax affairs tore him to shreds.
He does this by putting on a hugely extravagant Roman empire-themed birthday party, involving a makeshift amphitheatre and A-list guests, on the Greek island of Mykonos.
We learn of the billionaire’s rise to fame via flashbacks and are slowly spoon-fed a tale of a barrow boy’s ambition morphing him into a cash-grabbing bully who chases the deal and to hell with the consequences.
This is an unsubtle, occasionally cloying, yet cracking film, balancing social conscience with laugh-out-loud satire as well as it can.
There are sub-plots that, although crude, merge together well (one of McCreadie’s daughters is filming a Made In Chelsea-type show, which ends up with refugees fighting over takeaway chicken on a beach.)
While this is clearly an attack on moguls without morals, it never feels too preachy, yet never delivers the killer blow either.
Greed (15), 104 mins, Amazon Prime
JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT (Looper, Inception) stars in this low-budget airline thriller which does a great job of drawing you in.
He plays Tobias, a quiet co-pilot about to embark on a flight from Berlin to Paris with his flight-attendant fiancée (and the mother of his child).
In 7500 Joseph Gordon-Levitt gives a strong performance and his reluctant hero act feels believable[/caption]
Shortly after take-off, terrorists storm the cockpit, but thanks to some quick thinking, don’t manage to take control.
However Tobias finds himself in a dreadful situation, having to plan an emergency landing while trying to appease the terrorists and save his passengers.
With the whole film taking place inside the cockpit, it gives you a real sense of claustrophobia.
Gordon-Levitt gives a strong performance and his reluctant hero act feels believable.
This isn’t Die Hard in the air, there are no gung-ho heroics.
Another performance of note is Omid Memar, playing one of the hijackers.
In its own slightly old- fashioned way, this film is pretty good.
(15), 92 mins, Amazon Prime
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THE second season of Das Boot launched on Sky with a lack of fanfare – which is a shame as it is one of their absolute gems.
First launching in 2018, Das Boot (The Boat) was pitched as a sequel to the original book and film, picking up a few months after the events on board U-612.
There’s an inexperienced commander on board, while on land the Gestapo are on the hunt for the French Resistance.
Without spoiling any of the first season, the second expands locations with a third storyline running in New York.
War has twisted everyone into knots and new secret missions are handed out, with huge risks and rewards at stake.
It’s more of the same, which in the case of Das Boot is absolutely fine by me.
The whole series is as gripping and tension-packed as the classic film, with every episode leaving the heart beating a little faster than the last.
Its cast is pretty impeccable too.
Get on board now and be that friend who recommends it first.
Das Boot, (15), 16 episodes, Sky Atlantic & Now TV
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