With so much grabbing for your attention and dollars these days, it’s easy to miss when the latest releases are heading to a cinema near you. So come back every week as we here at So, Is It Any Good? preview the big new releases hitting screens.

Up this weekend, another reboot hits the road, Jake Gyllenhaal has tickets to the gun show, Hitman takes another assignment, Joaquin Phoenix is a bit of an Irrational Man, and a Sundance hit is pretty Dope in limited release.


vacation_ver6_xlgRating: MA15+

Starring: Ed Helms, Christina Applegate, Chris Hemsworth, Leslie Mann, Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo

Synopsis: Rusty Griswold takes his own family on a road trip to “Walley World” in order to spice things up with his wife and reconnect with his sons.

Our Verdict



Why you should be interested: The Chevy Chase starring original is a classic, and while it doesn’t hit those heights, the new Vacation does provide a pretty high joke ratio so that you won’t be disappointed. Ed Helms and Christina Applegate are always reliably funny, and are ably supported by a diverse and interesting supporting cast. Don’t watch too much before hand (the trailers give away a fair number of the best jokes) and you’ll have a good time.

Who should see it: National Lampoons nerds, Hangover fans



Rating: MA15+

Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rachael McAdams, Forrest Whitaker

Synopsis: Boxer Billy Hope turns to trainer Tick Willis to help him get his life back on track after losing his wife in a tragic accident and his daughter to child protection services.




Why you should be interested: This screams “Awards Contender” to me. A well-regarded young actor beefing up for a meaty role about a boxer with everything to lose. Add in a great supporting cast (50 cent maybe not included), a screenplay by Sons Of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter, and director Antoine Fuqua (Training Day) and you’ve definitely peaked my interest. Even if the synopsis and trailer give away a big plot point, I’m still buzzed to see Gyllenhaal really tear into a role. I think he was robbed not to be nominated at last years Oscars for Nightcrawler, maybe this will right that wrong.

Who should see it: Boxing buffs, Sports movie fans, Gyllenhaal groupies, Good drama devotees

Hitman: Agent 47

hitman_agent_forty_seven_ver4Rating: MA15+

Starring: Rupert Friend, Hannah Ware, Zachary Quinto

Synopsis: Based on the top-selling, award-winning video game franchise, “Agent 47” is an all-new motion picture about an elite and genetically engineered assassin, known only by the last two digits – 47 – of a barcode tattooed on the back of his neck. His latest target is a young woman on the run from powerful and clandestine forces. The mission brings startling revelations about the lethal agent and his prey, hurtling them on a collision course with their pasts. And this time, his number may be up


Why you should be interested: I wasn’t sure that Hitman needed another sequel, the original Timothy Olyphant starrer didn’t leave me needing to see more of that world. But here comes another version, with another Hitman, this time played by Rupert Friend (Pride & Prejudice, Homeland). The trailer doesn’t really sway me much, there’s some big action set pieces (and hey look Zachary Quinto!), but if you’ve got nothing else to do and have seen Mission Impossible and The Man From U.N.C.L.E. it might be a mindless way to kill a few hours.

Who should see it: Hitman series completists, Friends of Rupert

Irrational Man

irrational_man_xlgRating: M

Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Emma Stone, Parker Posey

Synopsis: On a small town college campus, a philosophy professor in existential crisis gives his life new purpose when he enters into a relationship with his student.




Why you should be interested: Woody Allen fans are already lining up for their seats. The rest of us might be wondering whether this is the Match Point/Midnight In Paris/Blue Jasmine Allen or the Anything Else/Scoop/To Rome With Love Allen. When he’s on-point, he’s very good, but too often he can degenerate into nonsense. The trailer has a breezy vibe, and it’s good to see Phoenix in a more relaxed role than in recent years. Emma Stone can never be counted as a negative either. I dunno, reviews haven’t been kind so as a casual Allen-fan, I’d probably be in the “miss” camp.

Who should see it: Allen admirers, Phoenix-philes, Stone supporters


dope_ver2_xlgRating: MA15+

Starring: Shameik Moore, Tony Revolori, Kiersey Clemons

Synopsis: Malcolm (Shameik Moore) is carefully surviving life in a tough neighborhood in Los Angeles while juggling college applications, academic interviews, and the SAT. A chance invitation to an underground party leads him into an adventure that could allow him to go from being a geek, to being dope, to ultimately being himself.



Why you should be interested: A big hit out of the Sundance film festival, this has been on my radar since the first trailers dropped a couple months back. The trailer gives a cool vibe, the story is a nice twist on the ghetto-tales that we’re used to seeing (no the main character isn’t in a gang), and it looks damn funny. Reviews have been stellar, so do yourself a favour, seek it out (hint: it’s playing predominantly at the Dendy chain).

Who should see it: Indie geeks, fans of 90’s hip-hop, lovers of good cinema

So, what are you going to see this weekend? Hit us up in the comments and let us know what you’ve watched, and if it’s any good!