Weekends were created to inspire spontaneous smiles, new friendships and fun-filled adventures. Every weekend deserves a Weekend Note. Discover more by subscribing or clicking the 'Like' link at the end of the article.
Published November 25th 2017
Struck by the Force while Breathing Song on a Trapeze?
Star Wars: The Last Jedi (by Walt Disney Studios)
There are films for all ages and tastes premiering in Australian theatres this month. From drama and childhood adventures to romance, musicals and space opera, start with these top 5 movies in December.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – December 14
In 2015, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, became the third-highest-grossing film of all time, with ticket sales of over $2 billion. The sequel arrives from a galaxy far, far away, in December, continuing the saga of the Star Wars universe.
Recapturing the energy of the original films, J. J. Abrams reacquainted us with our favourite characters, including Han Solo, Princess Leia, Chewbacca, R2-D2 and C-3PO, as a new cast of adventurers joined the franchise.
In this latest edition, Rey (Daisy Ridley) continues her quest, mirroring the journey of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) in Star Wars: A New Hope, wielding a lightsaber under the tutelage of the now middle-aged hermit, the Last Jedi.
Upgraded AT-ATs Walkers thunder across a desert world, similar to the scenes of armoured transports bombarding a Rebel base in The Empire Strikes Back.
Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) confronts his mother, Princess Leia, played by Carrie Fisher in her final film role, in their first encounter after he killed his father, Han Solo.
After defecting from the army of stormtroopers, Finn (John Boyega), challenges his former commander, the silver-helmeted Captain Phasma.
Amid their personal struggles, the galactic battle of good and evil unfolds under the sinister gaze of Supreme Leader Snoke.
Directed by Ryan Johnson (Looper, Breaking Bad), Star Wars: The Last Jedi also stars Oscar Isaac, Benicio Del Toro and Laura Dern.
For almost a century, The Greatest Show on Earth, Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus, brought a spectacle of theatre, magic, clown acts, acrobats, trapeze artists and wild animals to cities around the world.
In the 2017 age of social media and streaming video, the travelling roadshow, hosted beneath the "big top", succumbed to animal rights concerns and declining audiences, with the final show ironically streamed live on Youtube and Facebook.
After his acclaimed performances in Les Misérables and on stage as Peter Allen, Hugh Jackman plays the role of P.T. Barnum, the byword for the theatrical showman.
In this musical, Barnum's tale is celebrated as he creates the world's most successful circus, which endured through the Great Depression and two World Wars to bring joy to children of all ages.
The Greatest Showman also stars Michelle Williams (Manchester by the Sea), Zac Efron (The Disaster Artist) and Rebecca Ferguson (Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation).
Coco (by Walt Disney Pictures)
Coco – Boxing Day
Rated PG for mild themes
In Australia, we're bombarded with new reality TV stars as The Voice and X-Factor uncover debut singers, but in the film world of Coco, a family continues a generations-old ban on music.
Miguel struggles with this silence as he ponders his dream of performing with his idol, the veteran signer, Ernesto de la Cruz (voiced by Benjamin Bratt).
When he resolves to follow his dream, the animated adventure begins as he is plunged into the colourful Land of Dead, brought to life by the award-winning animators in Disney's Pixar Studios.
Guided by an intriguing trickster, Miguel discovers the real reason for his family's repression of music and the potential solution, if he is brave enough to take the ultimate step.
Coco is the highest-grossing film of all-time in Mexico, and stars the voice talents of Anthony Gonzalez, Gael García Bernal (The Motorcycle Diaries) and Alanna Ubach (Legally Blonde).
Romance overcoming adversity is a timeless theme in storytelling.
In 2014, Alex McKinnon suffered paralysis after an accident during a rugby league game. Two weeks after the spinal injury, and as a quadriplegic, he proposed to his girlfriend, Teigan Power. In October, after 3 years of Teigan's support during his physical rehabilitation, he stood during their wedding.
Breathe brings another inspirational romance to the cinema, adapting the true story of Robin and Diana Cavendish (Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy).
When he is only 28 years old, Robin is paralysed by polio. From his hospital bed, he breathes with the aid of a mechanical ventilator. His wife and their friends work with him to invent a wheelchair with a built-in respirator, despite the dire prognosis of his doctors.
If they succeed, their adventurous love story will grow beyond the hospital, with grand plans to travel the world and improve the lives of people with paralysis.
Andy Serkis (Gollum in Lord of the Rings and Caesar in Planet of the Apes) makes his directorial debut with Breathe, which also stars Diana Rigg, Miranda Raison, Dean-Charles Chapman, Hugh Bonneville and Kiera Bell.