How To Train Your Dragon 2 Review

How To Train Your Dragon 2 (PG)

Reviewed By Kate Maitland-Gleed

Star Rating: 4 Stars 

‘An emotional roller coaster’ is one of the ways I would describe this film. Another way would be; ‘a charismatic animation.’ Following on with the story from the last film, the characters or older, wiser and more dragon orientated. With the laughs from the off point, you with be a bag of emotions by the end of this film! But by introducing Cate Blanchett to the line-up, one thing’s for sure; you will love this film all the way through!

Five years ago we saw young Hiccup defy his father and become friends with the enemy; dragons. But now, things have changed; Berk is now a land of peace and productivity with the massive help of these fire-breathing reptiles. Now a young man, Hiccup (voiced by Jay Baruchel) is soon to be made chief and his father, Stoick (voiced by Gerard Butler) has high hopes for his one-legged son. But soon the peace is broken, when Hiccup and his girlfriend Astrid (voiced by America Ferrera) discover a ship of dragon hunters; capturing the creatures and handing them over to the war lord, Drago (voiced by Djimon Hounsou). Hiccup, along with his friends; Astrid, Snotlout (voiced by Jonah Hill), Fishlegs (voiced by Christopher Mintz-Plasse), and the twins Ruff-Nut (voiced by Kristen Wiig) and Tuff-Nut (voiced by T.J. Miller), are determined to save the dragons and protect their hometown of Berk. But while trying to find Drago, Hiccup finds a long-lost someone who is more than happy to see him. Once his family has been brought back together, all focus is on saving the dragons… Alongside this adventurous story line, the smaller tale of a love story occurs between Ruff-Nut and two boys fighting for her hand; but is she interested… Nope! You’ll really want to find out what happens to the citizens of Berk and obviously; who gets the girl… See you at the cinema!

I thoroughly enjoyed this film, almost as much as I did the first. The characters hadn’t lost their wit, they’d only become stronger in personality. I was laughing and biting my nails all the way through this light-hearted sequel. You’ll be on the edge of your seat at some points and find a lump in your throat at others. I can’t wait until the next one comes out!

Categories: Film Reviews

The Fault In Our Stars Review

The Fault In Our Stars Review (12A)

Reviewed By Kate Maitland-Gleed

Star Rating: 5 Stars

“My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.” – John Green

To be perfectly honest, I was skeptical about this film adaptation of John Green’s book; ‘The Fault In Our Stars’. Not only was it the fact that the director Josh Boone may have changed certain elements dramatically, but also because the sad cancer-rigged love story has been used so much; for example, Dakota Fanning’s ‘Now Is Good’. But all doubt went away as soon as the film started! I was in awe all the way through, and the amazing actors and actresses made this story so believable, and sent home the message that this isn’t a fictional novel, it’s happening right now, and that’s the element that makes ‘The Fault In Our Stars’ such a touching film.

The casting for this film was perfect. I’ve never read the book, therefore I don’t know John Green’s original  image for each character, but from what I’ve heard from veteran readers, Shailene Woodley (playing Hazel) and Ansel Elgort (playing Gus) fit the description brilliantly! I mean, if John Green wanted his character Gus to be smoking hot and irresistibly easy to fall in love with, then Ansel Elgort is defiantly perfect! Flecks of comedy were unearthed in this sad tale by the character Issac (played by Nat Wolff), his sad cancer story is enlightened by his strange and confused optimism! The strong-willed parents of Hazel are played by Laura Dern and Sam Trammell. Their kind looks just help tug on your heart strings. Other famous faces within this film include Lotte Verbeek (playing Lidewij) and Willem Dafoe (playing Van Houten).

Within a moment, silence turned to sobbing. The sound of crying flooded the room and due to the intense story, nobody cared; they just sat on the edge of their seats, their eyes wide and tear filled, and fell in love with this beautiful film! I was quoting the film hours after watching it. Now I absolutely hate reading, but by watching this brilliant adaptation, I can’t wait to go into town to find the bookshop! I really want to read John Green’s original novel… And that’s saying something! I will make time to go and watch this touching film again! See you at the Plaza!

Categories: Film Reviews

A Million Ways To Die In The West (15)

Reviewed By Kate Maitland-Gleed

Star Rating: 4 Stars

After the roaring success of Seth MacFarlane’s ‘Ted’ in 2012, I was overly excited to see the new comedy ‘A Million Ways To Die In The West’! After an extremely stressful day, I was really thankful to sit down in the comfy chairs in the Plaza along with some tasty nuts! And they were only my friends!! (Sorry, revision has gotten to my head slightly)! Anyway, with extreme comfort, something to nibble on and surrounded by mates, I was ready to endeavour on a trip back to the wild west… With a whole bucket load of comedy mixed it!

After an unnecessary long introduction of desolate western landscape, and mind boggling country and western music, I was ready for some actual dialogue to occur! Finally it did, and it was well worth the wait!! Puns and side-splitting jokes were thrown at us from the start! And it was really nice to see loads of cameo roles from a variety of famous faces; for example, Ewan McGregor, Christopher Lloyd, Ryan Reynolds and Jamie Fox, and also small links between this Seth MacFarlane film, and ‘Ted’. Also, many past actors and actresses from MacFarlane films were also given main roles in this film; such as, Giovanni Ribisi, Neil Patrick Harris and Sarah Silverman.

After losing the love of his life; Louise (played by Amanda Seyfried), Albert (played by MacFarlane), a humble sheep farmer, comes to the conclusion that there is nothing left for him in the deadly west and that he should leave for a safer part of the US. But after being persuaded against this judgement by his friends, Edward and Ruth (played by Giovanni Ribisi and Sarah Silverman), Albert’s luck begins to change when the smouldering hot, yet self efficient Anna (played by Charlize Theron) falls into his life. What brings these two outcasts together is the lack of gunman skills Albert has, and the extensive pistol tricks Anna can teach him. But as the plot thickens, the pattern in Albert’s stars change and only he, and him alone, can resolve these deadly problems!! (I bet after reading that tantalising taster of the plot, you can’t wait to watch the real film!!)

Myself and my friends really enjoyed this film, and have no doubt that we shall be watching it again! Although there are a few explicit references and scenes, and the majority of the language is some kind of swear word, this really is an enjoyable film to be intently watched by anyone and everyone who enjoy the work and MacFarlane and a massive dose of comedy! See you in the cinema!

Categories: Film Reviews

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues Review

Anchorman 2 (15) Image

Reviewed By Kate Maitland-Gleed 

Star Rating: 4 Stars 

After watching the first ‘Anchorman’ in 2004, I was left laughing and wanting more. 9 years later, we are graced with the continuation of the Legend of Ron Burgundy. New adventures and problems is what prevails for Mr. Burgundy and his news team. Taking you back once again to the 70’s, the time of Elvis, platform shoes and big hair, you will be gald to be back. After getting married to his rival in the last film, his life seems to be looking up… Not for long… Dum dum daaaaaa! Sorry, but it is all very dramatic!

With old and new faces, this film will never stop making you laugh. Even the sad parts have hilarious highlights. Obviously, the main man Will Ferrell is the star of the show and has a direct line to your funny bone. But he doesn’t necessarily have all the funny lines. Along side him is his news team consisting of Steve Carell (who plays Brick Tamland), Paul Rudd (who plays Brian Fantana) and David Koechner (who plays Champ Kind). They will all equally make you fall off your chair with laughter. New faces also crop up and include; Meagen Good (who plays Linda Jackson), James Marsden (who plays Jack Lime), and Kristen Wiig (who plays Chani). The cast list is endless and is made up purely of famous faces that you will instantly recognize. 


Faces such as; Will Smith, Sacha Baron Cohen, Kirsten Dunst, Liam Neeson, Harrison Ford, Jim Carrey and so many more that you will know. Trust me, you’ll love it!

Although I felt this film dragged on a bit and was slightly try hard, I still really enjoyed ‘Anchorman 2’ and would definitely watch it again. I was quoting this film days after I had watched it. You know all that money you received for Christmas, how about popping down to the Plaza to what this fabulous film? See you in the cinema.

Categories: Film Reviews

Carrie Review

Carrie (15)

Written By Kate Maitland-Gleed

Star Rating: 5 Stars

I have been looking forward to watching Carrie for 4 months. I was devastated when I thought the Plaza wasn’t going to show it. But this week they have been showing Carrie and it really made my week. It was brilliant! Staring the amazing Chloë Grace Moretz as Carrie, this film is a must see! I had only seen short clips of the 1976 version, and although slightly cringe-worthy, it still looked good back then, but that storyline mixed with today’s high-tech media and special effects, makes this  2013 remake even better and will have you on the edge of your seat all the way through.

Have you ever been bullied? Maybe wanted to get your revenge on those who treated you wrong? Well Carrie White gets this wish, and has unknowingly had the ability to do so all her life. After becoming a woman, Carrie develops hidden powers to control things with the strength of her mind. Her heavily religious mother in unaware of these dark talents but has always had doubts about her ‘little girl’. Urging her to pray and seek forgiveness from the Lord, along with the ongoing hate campaigns created by her fellow school students, has turned Carrie into a odious person who seeks revenge on those who have made her life the hell it has turned out to be. And what better place to do it but at the senior prom…

As I said earlier, Carrie White is played by the young budding actress; Chloë Grace Moretz; may I say she did a fine job. Her mother, Margaret is played by Julianne Moore. To accompany these two horrifyingly good stars is; Gabriella Wilde (plays Sue Snell), Portia Doubleday (plays Chris Hargensen), Judy Greer (plays Ms. Desjardin), Barry Shabaka Henley (plays Principle Morton) among many others.

Although at some points the acting was a bit cheesy, it linked well with the original film as Moretz used the same eerie movement as  Sissy Spacek did in the 1976 version. The gory scenes were really well finished, leaving you wanting more. After what these girls did to innocent Carrie, you know they deserved what they got! I am so glad I got to see this film, and I might even treat myself and go and watch it again! See you there!

Categories: Film Reviews

FILM REVIEW: Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2

downloadThe sequel to 2009’s taste-bud tingling treat, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 does not disappoint. The perfect family film packed with laughs, not to mention a talking strawberry and a scientist who insists your ideas can “change the world”.

The story follows Flint Lockwood and his gang – a Monkey called Steve, the weather girl, his Dad, a man dressed as a chicken, and a short man in a cap who insists there are many ways in which he can help. Oh yeah, not forgetting a talking strawberry who joins them on their journey as they travel back to Swallow Falls, the island on which they used to live, to recover the machine which is creating the giant man-eating food. As you can imagine, this film is lots of fun, as the characters battle giant cheeseburger spiders (with sesame seeds for eyes), and try to avoid getting caught in cheese-webs, on their epic quest to find the machine.

I’d highly recommend this film to kids, families, and big kids alike, definitely one to watch on a wet afternoon!

reviewed by Dan Spracklen (Usher, Plaza Cinema)


Categories: Film Reviews


That’s right, popular musical MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG from London’s West End is showing here at the Plaza on Thursday 24th October at 2pm and 8pm, in Screen 4. Tickets are available online here, or from the box office when we are open!

ALso just confirmed is the Met Opera season, check it out on our website here:

Categories: Features