Four new films to see in cinemas this week

SWEETHEART ★★★★☆
Directed by Marley Morrison. Starring Nell Barlow, Ella-Rae Smith, Jo Hartley, Sophia di Martino, Tabitha Byron, Samuel Anderson. 15A cert, limited release, 103 min
Excellent British comedy following an angry teenager, recently come out as a lesbian, as she squabbles with her irritating but basically decent family at an awful seaside resort. Some viewers may worry that the threats here are a little too low-level – there are no villains in Sweetheart – but, though desperately touching at times, this remains a class of romantic comedy in which resolution is never entirely out of reach. Barlow is remarkable in the lead: angry, confused, embarrassed. A first-class directorial debut stuffed with big laughs and quiet wisdom. Full review DC

DEADLY CUTS ★★★☆☆
Directed by Rachel Carey. Starring Aidan McArdle, Angeline Ball, Ericka Roe, Lauren Larkin, Pauline McLynn, Victoria Smurfit. 15A cert, gen release, 91 min

Angeline Ball (2nd from left) and her crew in Deadly Cuts
Angeline Ball (2nd from left) and her crew in Deadly Cuts

A group of bawdy characters from Dublin’s northside compete in a hairdressing competition. It seems scarcely possible that any screen smaller than three-lens Cinerama could be large enough to accommodate the broadness of the comedy in this (what adjective shall we use?) unpretentious Irish movie. All is forgiven, Mrs Brown; in comparison, you carry yourself like Anna Karina in a Godard puzzler. Yet, for those of us who have lived through a few decades of Irish film, there is something pleasingly nostalgic about the rawness of Deadly Cuts. It’s warm. It’s harmless. Victoria Smurfit, in particular, has an absolute ball. Full review  DC

MY LITTLE SISTER/SCHWESTERLEIN ★★★☆☆
Directed by Stéphanie Chuat, Véronique Reymond. Starring Nina Hoss, Lars Eidinger, Marthe Keller, Jens Albinus. Limited release, 100 min

Nina Hoss and Lars Eidinger in My Little Sister
Nina Hoss and Lars Eidinger in My Little Sister

Lisa (Hoss), who is both motherly and furiously compensating, is determined to nurse her gay, leukaemia-afflicted brother (Eidinger) back to health and onto a stage. It’s a big ask of a woman who is already snowed under with maternal and domestic responsibilities and expectations. “I have plans too,” Lisa tells her husband, who seems to have never considered such a possibility. The emotional pyrotechnics that scaffold most cancer dramas, give way to something that is as honest as it is understated. This is Switzerland’s entry for this year’s Oscar for international feature. Full review TB

 THE ADDAMS FAMILY 2 ★★☆☆☆
Directed by Greg Tiernan, Conrad Vernon. Voices of Charlize Theron, Oscar Isaac, Chloë Grace Moretz, Snoop Dogg, Bette Midler, Bill Hader, Wallace Shawn. PG cert, gen release, 93 min

The Addams Family 2
The Addams Family 2

The Addams Family is a durable creation, but can the franchise survive another instalment in its latest ghastly incarnation? If the first hideously designed Addams Family (2018) animation left unamused audiences singing “they’re creaky and they’re crappy, they’re altogether lacking”, this sequel aims (and lands) even lower. The Gothicism that hitherto defined the clan has given way to the twin nightmares of relatability and four-quadrant striving. “The horror; the horror”, as Marlon Brando says in a film that is funnier than this one. Full review TB

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