New On Screen: May 2023

Look forward to the live action remake of a classic comic this month, along with the return of Hollywood veterans like Sigourney Weaver, Vin Diesel and Woody Harrelson.

By Yong Shu Chiang        15 May 2023


Out 24 May, Apple TV+

Stars: Rose Byrne, Seth Rogen, Carla Gallo

There are friends whom you remember partying with, back in the day, that you may not have kept in touch with as life intervened. Sylvia (Byrne) and Will (Rogen) are two such friends, former besties who resume their friendship long after something had come between them. Years later, now approaching mid-life, the pair have to grapple with the issues that plague responsible adults, and seek solace in each other, platonically, while trying to have it all. In the midst of all this, Sylvia and Will also need to confront the reasons why they had fallen out.

Rose Byrne: Seriously funny

Now known for her comedy chops, the prolific Australian actress used to be noticed for dramatic roles, before a breakout turn in the female-centric comedy, Bridesmaids.

There was a time when Rose Byrne, the ageless Aussie actress who has been active in Hollywood for two decades, was seen only as a “serious” actress.

Though she had a minor role in 2002’s Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones, as a handmaiden to Natalie Portman’s Padme Amidala, she first gained prominence in the epic drama Troy (2004), playing a Trojan priestess opposite Brad Pitt. 

However, arguably Byrne’s most memorable role was in 2011’s Bridesmaids, a surprise box-office hit produced by Judd Apatow, where she played a rich, entitled trophy wife vying to become the BFF of the bride, played by Maya Rudolph. 

In more recent years, the 43-year-old has delved into the horror genre, as a recurring character in the Insidious film series, in addition to working on thrillers, dramas, superhero films and streaming comedy series such as her latest, Platonic, co-starring Seth Rogen.

Born near Sydney, Byrne has been acting since she was 15. When she was still a young up-and-coming actress, she starred as the love interest for an equally unknown Heath Ledger in the 1999 crime comedy Two Hands.

Byrne later played an attorney for five seasons on the legal series Damages, for which she earned Emmy and Golden Globe award nominations. During this successful run, which ended in 2012, she decided she wanted to take “a break” from dramatic roles and explore comedies. 

Following her parts in Get Him to the Greek (2011) and Bridesmaids, Byrne has continued to excel in a string of comedies, such as I Give It A Year (2013), Neighbors (2014), Spy (2015), Neighbors 2 (2016), Instant Family (2018), Like a Boss (2020) and Spirited (2022). 

Currently seen in the darkly comic series Physical, Byrne is also working on a new comedy called Inappropriate Behavior, opposite her husband Bobby Cannavale and Robert De Niro.

Asterix & Obelix: The Middle Kingdom

Out in cinemas now (Available at Shaw Theatres)

Stars: Guillaume Canet, Vincent Cassel, Marion Cotillard

Our two favourite Gauls, Asterix (Canet) and Obelix, spend much of their time defending their village from Roman invaders, enjoying a rich, meaty diet and making merry with their friends. One day, they hear tales of China from a friend, who has befriended a Chinese princess taking refuge from a revolution in her country. After they meet the princess and her trusty bodyguard, Asterix and Obelix are convinced to travel East to help her save her mother and free her country. A problem arises when Caesar (Cassel) decides to bring his army to China.

SAFRA members enjoy special discounts on MovieMax Member rates and Combo Sets at Shaw Theatres. For more info, go to safra.sg/promotions/shaw-theatres

Fast X

Out in cinemas 18 May (available at Shaw Theatres)

Stars: Vin Diesel, Jason Momoa, Brie Larson

In this 10th film of the Fast saga franchise, the themes of family and revenge run deep. Dom (Diesel) has retired to settle down with his wife and son. But the consequences of his past come catching up with him in the form of Dante Reyes (Momoa), a violent criminal who blames Dom and his crew for the death of his drug-lord father. As his life and the lives of those around him are threatened, Dom has some tough decisions to make, in order to save them from the furious reprisals of Reyes, who is aided by the cyberterrorist known as Cipher.

Master Gardener

Out in cinemas 18 May (Available at Shaw Theatres)

Stars: Joel Edgerton, Sigourney Weaver, Quintessa Swindell

Narvel (Edgerton) is a man with green fingers. As a horticulturist, he tends to the grounds of a lush and sprawling estate. His boss is a wealthy widow, Haverhill (Weaver), who appreciates his work and attention to detail. All is well as Narvel is a dedicated employee who causes no trouble. That is, until Haverhill asks him to take on an apprentice, her troubled grand-niece Maya (Swindell). As Narvel tries to teach Maya how to garden, she delves into his hidden background, and a violent and chaotic past threatens to encroach upon the present.

White House Plumbers

Out now, HBO GO

Stars: Woody Harrelson, Justin Theroux, Lena Headey

Two former intelligence agents are special investigators for the Richard Nixon administration in the 1970s. Hunt (Harrelson) and Liddy (Theroux) are among President Nixon’s “plumbers” tasked to investigate leaks, such as that of the Pentagon Papers in 1971. Eventually, they have to dig for dirt on Nixon’s political adversaries, by any means necessary, leading them to spy on the rival Democratic Party’s election campaign offices. These offices at the Watergate Complex would then become the scene of one of America’s greatest political scandals.

Black Knight

Out 12 May, Netflix

Stars: Kim Woo-bin, Song Seung-heon, Esom

Sometime in the not-too-distant future, the world is devastated by climatic elements and the effects of pollution. Across barren wastelands, intrepid “deliverymen” don masks that allow them to breathe, as they transport precious supplies including oxygen to other remaining survivors. One of these deliverymen is 5-8 (Kim), who is part of an elite group of transporters known as the Black Knights. With their special skills and resilience, these Black Knights fight to save refugees, ward off bandits and stand up for justice against an unscrupulous cartel.

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