Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Original Classic Animation

Disney, 1937

Director: David Hand

Writers: Ted Sears, Richard Creedon, Otto Englander, Dick Rickard, Earl Hurd, Merrill De Maris, Dorothy Ann Blank, and Webb Smith.

Based on: Grimm’s Fairytale of Snow White

I went to see this recently. Disney only releases it once every few years so you have to act when you see it. The aspect ratio in 1937 was 4:3, which looks strange to us now, given the wide screen formats we’re used to. It’s what we’d term today as a musical containing many classics, such as “One Day My Prince Will Come” and the “Hi Ho, It’s Off To Work We Go” sung by the dwarfs.

A Disney Animated Classic

The story contains a lot of cliches, including character concepts, character reactions and facial expressions, and a multitude of instances of political incorrectness and topics a writer is forbidden from discussing in today’s world. However, the artwork is superb, both characters and backgrounds (for years I wanted to be a Disney background artist), the palettes gorgeous, progressing from muted and secondary colours to start and getting brighter as the story progressed. The script was tight, the plot solid and the beats fell in the right place. Today’s kids laughed at the (almost) 100-year-old gags and they enjoyed the story.

Before AI was a twinkle in Hollywood’s eye

Most of all, you have to remember, each frame was hand-drawn and coloured, the characters overlaid onto the backgrounds. Every nodding rabbit, chirping bird and chewing deer represents days of manual work. It’s truly remarkable for that, and a classic, and yes, I cried.

Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs

Asteroid City

Feature, 2023

Director: Wes Anderson

Writers: Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola

Based On: An Original Story by Wes Anderson

As with all Wes Anderson films, you must pay attention to every frame. Not only is a cast of stars set in a Milky Way of cameo appearances by other famous and great actors, each frame is a work of art.

Set in 1955, the film opens in black and white and tells the story of a stage play and what goes on behind the scenes. We arrive in Asteroid City and the story moves into Kodachrome, gaudy and saturated colour, and it’s glorious. It’s a narrative about the culture of the time, and the contemporary attitude to UFOs and little green men, at a time when the Roswell alien conspiracies began.

I bought a ticket thinking I was going to see straightforward science fiction, but there’s a deeper theme too. It hits like a gut punch, but that’s Wes Anderson for you. I told you to concentrate. I loved it.

Starring: Tom Hanks, Margot Robbie, Bryan Cranston and a host of others.

Asteroid City

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

Feature, 2023

Director: James Mangold

Writers: James Mangold, Jez Butterworth, John-Henry Butterworth, David Koepp

Based on: The Indiana Jones franchise.

Indy Jones Does It Again

I’ve waited for this for years, along with half the planet. A non-stop action adventure quest, complete with an ancient fantasy object and exotic locations, the film includes all our favourite Indy Jones tropes. It’s huge fun and has you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. The ending? A real tearjerker. I loved it, especially the way the story turned out.

Starring: Harrison Ford, Phoebe Waller-Jones, Mads Mikkelsen.

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny


Feature, 2023

Director: Greta Gerwig

Writers: Greta Gerwig & Noah Baumbach

Based on: Mattel’s Barbie doll concept.

Oh No, Not Barbie…

Like many others, I dismissed this movie as pink candy floss, or cotton candy, as you call it over the pond, but then I saw the director and the writers, whose work I adore, and I knew I had to see it. There’s also the line in the trailer, “If you love Barbie, this movie is for you. If you hate Barbie, this movie is for you.” Sold.

An enjoyable and thought-provoking experience. I’ll see it again.

Starring: Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Kate McKinnon, Issa Rae, Will Ferrell.



Feature, 2023

Director: Christopher Nolan

Writer: Christopher Nolan

Based on: Book, American Prometheus, The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer written by Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin.

A Masterpiece of History

The story of the man who led The Manhattan Project and cracked the science of making the first atomic bomb, testing it in the New Mexico desert in 1945.A complex storyline, a piece of history, another visual and dramatic masterpiece from Christopher Nolan. 

Starring: Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt and a host of big names.


Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part One

Feature, 2023

Director: Christopher McQuarrie, Splinter Unit Director: Chris Jones

Writers: Christopher McQuarrie & Erik Jendresen

Based on: Bruce Geller’s TV series

A.k.a. Mission Impossible 7. Action, thriller, drama, mystery, this film has it all, including Tom Cruise. For me, I simply loved it. It sets a cracking pace from start to finish, so you have to keep on your toes. I’ve had the privilege of attending Christopher McQuarrie’s video interviews in Christopher Lockhart‘s Facebook group and the privilege of knowing Chris Jones, first through his London Screenwriters’ Festival and online. Nothing like feeling part of the club, and I can’t wait for Part Two.

MI: Dead Reckoning Part Two is scheduled for release in 2024

Starring: Tom Cruise, Hayley Atwell and a host of others.

Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part One

Insidious: The Red Door

Feature, 2023

Director: Patrick Wilson

Writers: Scott Teems, story by Leigh Whannell

Based on: Leigh Whannell and James Wan’s Insidious franchise

Straight supernatural horror, it’s instalment 5 of the Insidious story. 10-year-old Dalton Lambert has now grown and starts college as an artist, still drawing the nightmares that have plagued him all his life. Plenty of sustained tension and jump scares make it classic horror. It helps if you know the franchise already and you recognise actors you know and you’re familiar with the characters. I simply loved, loved, loved the Caravaggio Chiaroscuro metaphor put forward by Dalton’s art lecturer. Very enjoyable.

Starring: Leigh Whannell, Ty Simpkins, Patrick Wilson, Lin Shaye.

Insidious: The Red Door

2023 A Great Year for Theatre Movies

Overall, 2023 has been fantastic for big-screen theatre movies, and the rest of the year promises more. 

Header Image by the mighty

Links to movies sourced at IMDB.

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