Set in the 1970s, this film follows 11-year-old Gru (voiced by Steve Carell) who is on a quest to become a supervillain. After a failed audition to be part of a supervillain team, Vicious 6, Gru steals a supernatural stone, setting off a high-stakes game of cat and mouse. Through abundant puns, laughs, and the silliness of the banana-loving minions, the film, directed by Kyle Balda, shows how young Gru and the minions learnt to work as a team, gives a glimpse into Gru’s supervillain instincts, and comes with familiar madcap humour. (Netflix)
This French film directed by Mélanie Laurent is a rare crime comedy led by women. Two expert thieves and best friends, Carole (Laurent) and Alex (Adèle Exarchopoulos) want to quit their life on the run and start a more mundane one. However, turns out, getting out is harder than they thought. Their godmother (Isabelle Adjani) enlists them to complete a last heist for which they are joined by Sam (Manon Bresch). With female friendship at the centre, complemented by fun banters, heartfelt moments, and action sequences, it’s refreshing to see a film attempt to debunk stereotypes about strong women. (Netflix)
Based on a webtoon, The Girl Downstairs, Bae Suzy plays the titular Doona, the lead singer of a K-pop group, who has had a breakdown and is now taking a hiatus in a sharehome with three college students, including Won-jun (Yang Se-jong). She has no friends, fears ending up alone, realising that apart from singing and dancing, there’s nothing else that she knows how to do. Won-jun dream is to live an ordinary life, like everyone else: “For me, even that’s an achievement,” he says. It is a restrained, quiet love story—with heartache—and at nine episodes than the usual 16, it tends to digress less. (Netflix)
Using archival footage, the four-part docuseries re-enacts the paranormal happenings of 1977-79 at 284, Green Street, Enfield, a north London semi-detached home. Single mother Peggy, her daughters Margaret and Janet and a son are terrorised by a poltergeist. It starts with knocking sound, followed by the flinging of furniture. He speaks through Janet, then 11, calling himself Bill Wilkinson from Durants Park Graveyard.
The Society for Psychical Research’s (SPR’s) two members, inventor and paranormal investigator Maurice Grosse and writer Guy Lyon Playfair, were sent to investigate. Grosse made over 200 hours of tape recordings. Though there were critics and sceptics—SPR’s Anita Gregory found the attitude of Grosse and Playfair extremely “uncritical”, casting doubts on their reliability as interpreters of experience—it’s a dark and disturbing watch. (Apple TV+)
—Compiled by Nipa Charagi and Aisiri Amin