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What’s on at the cinema in August

Step aside, Barbenheimer – some new flicks are in town.

Written by Chris Kingston
Published 12.08.2023

July was a pretty good month for cinema releases, right?

We had some massive summer blockbuster movies released, with the high note undoubtedly when two of the year’s biggest new films, Barbie and Oppenheimer, battled it out at the box office after being released on the same day.

We think it’s fair to say that Barbenheimer was worth the hype.

But August is a new month and brings with it a continuation of the hit blockbuster summer we’re all enjoying, with yet more action, comedy and superhero capers heading to cinema screens near you…

Joy Ride

Out now

Asian-American films are finally taking hold in Hollywood, with movies such as Everything Everywhere All At Once winning big at the Oscars last year.

Directed and written by Crazy Rich Asians screenwriter Adele Lim, Joy Ride is a hilarious and unapologetically explicit story of identity and self-discovery, centring on four unlikely friends who embark on a once-in-a-lifetime international adventure.

When Audrey’s business trip to Asia goes sideways, she enlists the help of Lolo, her childhood best friend, Kat, a college friend, and Deadeye, Lolo’s eccentric cousin. Their epic, no-holds-barred journey through China becomes an adventure of bonding, friendship, belonging and wild debauchery that reveals the universal truth of what it means to know and love who you are.

Meg 2: The Trench 

Out now 

Swim back to where you came from, Jaws – there’s a new shark in town.

Get ready for the ultimate adrenaline rush this summer in Meg 2: The Trench – a (literally) larger than life thrill ride that supersizes the 2018 blockbuster and takes the action to higher heights and even greater depths.

Action movie legend Jason Statham returns as Megalodon shark hunter Jonas Taylor and, this time, is joined by global action icon Wu Jing as they lead a team of researchers to the deepest depths of the ocean – where they’re forced into a high stakes battle of survival against some colossal, multiple Megs.

This is a film you can really sink your teeth into this summer.

Gran Turismo

Out now

Gran Turismo is based on the unbelievable, inspiring true story of Jann Mardenborough (Archie Madelowe): a struggling, working-class gamer, whose skills won him a series of Nissan competitions to become a real-life, professional race car driver.

He’s helped along the way by a failed former race car driver (played by David Harbour of Stranger Thingsfame), and an idealistic motorsport exec (Orlando Bloom) who, together, risk it all to take on the most elite sport in the world.

Expect an action-packed thrill ride that proves nothing is impossible when you’re fuelled from within. Also, look out for the one and only Geri Halliwell-Horner, who plays Jann’s mother.

Haunted Mansion 

Out now

Not content with rebooting their animated classics, Disney are also intent on rebooting some of their live-action golden oldies, as we saw with Hocus Pocus 2 last year.

Haunted Mansion is the latest of their Halloween-inspired adventures to get some modern TLC, and of course is also one of their classic theme-park rides. The plot follows a single mum and her son, who hire a crew of so-called spiritual experts (which consists of a tour guide, a psychic, a priest and a historian) to help exorcise her newly-bought mansion, after discovering it’s inhabited by ghosts.

As usual with these kind of flicks, we have an all-star cast of acting talent that includes Lakeith Stanfield, Tiffany Haddish, Owen Wilson, Danny DeVito, Rosario Dawson, Jamie Lee Curtis and Jared Leto.

Brace yourself for an unexpected thrill ride that may set the stage for yet another new franchise…


18th August  

They say dogs are a man’s best friend, but what would happen if the owner was a total dirt bag? If that’s the case, it might just be time for some sweet revenge, doggy style…

When a gullible Border Terrier named Reggie (voiced by Will Ferrell) is left abandoned on the streets by his selfish owner Doug (Will Forte), an animal-hating drug addict who never wanted him in the first place, Reggie finds himself making friends with the other strays on the street.

These include a street-smart Boston Terrier named Bug (Jamie Foxx), Maggie, an Australian Shepherd (Isla Fisher), and a therapy Great Dane named Hunter (Randall Park). Together, they team up to get revenge on Doug.

This adult comedy is rated 15, so it’s definitely not one for the little ones.


Blue Beetle

18th August  

Blue Beetle is the latest DC superhero adventure movie, which tells the story of Jaime Reyes (Xolo Marideria).

When an alien Scarab suddenly chooses Jaime to be its symbiotic host, he is bestowed with an incredible suit of armour capable of extraordinary and unpredictable powers, forever changing his destiny as he becomes the superhero, Blue Beetle.

Susan Sarandon plays villain Victoria Kord, who wants to use the alien technology for her own dastardly ends.

Directed by Angel Manuel Soto, this will be the 14th movie in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) and, with the box office disappointment of both Black Adam and The Flash, we’re sure DC will have done everything in their power to ensure they have a new hit on their hands.

The Blackening

25th August

If you’re looking for a cool twist on the horror genre, look no further than The Blackening, which follows a group of black friends who reunite for a weekend getaway, only to find themselves trapped in a remote cabin with a twisted killer.

Forced to play by his rules, the friends begin to realize this is no game.

Directed by Tim Story (Barbershop, Ride Along), The Blackening offers a neat comedic twist on the Saw and Scream movies by posing the sardonic question: if the entire cast of a horror movie is black, then who dies first?


Theater Camp

25th August

We just can’t seem to help ourselves – when a new musical flick comes on the scene, we have to get fully invested.

The latest all-singing comedic caper comes in the form of Theater Camp: an authentic depiction of the youth theatre experience that anyone who’s ever practised their jazz hands in front of the mirror will be able to relate to.

Tony Award-winner Ben Platt and Molly Gordon star as Amos and Rebecca-Diane: lifelong best friends and drama instructors at a rundown theatre camp in upstate New York. When clueless tech-bro Troy (Jimmy Tatro) arrives to run the property (into the ground), Amos and Rebecca-Diane band together with the staff and students to stage a masterpiece and keep their beloved summer camp afloat.


30th August  

It would seem we recommend at least one horror film every month, yet Slotherhouse stands apart by having already got horror fans on social media both amused and bewildered by its premise.

The action follows college student Emily Young (Lisa Ambalavanar), who adopts a cute-looking sloth named Alpha in order to help her become president of her sorority.

However, when dead bodies start showing up throughout the house, Emily and her friends soon begin to suspect that their new furry friend may indeed be the perpetrator.

With movies like Cocaine Bear being released early this year, we’re not as surprised as perhaps we should be that we now have a killer sloth movie. We’re actually weirdly here for it.

Christopher Kingston
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