Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

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Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

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Article excerpt

Byline: Charlotte O'Sullivan

CHIPS Cert 15, 100 mins IN WHICH the TV series that no one in Britain gave much of a toss about gets a big-screen adaptation. Basically, this is an origin story, with a maverick FBI agent who knows nothing about motorbikes (the brilliant Michael Pena) forced to adopt a new identity Ponch and infiltrate the California Highway Patrol. Naturally, Ponch has an unwitting partner, Jon Baker (Dax Shepard), who's the chalk to his cheese. Shepard (also the film's director) has gangly charm and the chemistry between the leads creates some daft but involving moments. There are lots of good people in the cast (Maya Rudolph, Kristen Bell), but too many of the gags are lazy and/or have a nasty edge.

ALL THIS PANIC Cert 15, 79 mins GRIPPING, hilarious US documentary. Jenny Gage and her cinematographer husband, Tom, spent three years hanging out with a group of New York girls, all in their late teens and all middle class but with very different family set-ups. Some are about to go to college. One the wretched and wrathful Ginger decides to take a year out. These kids must love Gage. Without seeming to perform for the cameras, they talk about private stuff (two of the girls have self-harmed) and allow some pretty excruciating altercations to be captured on film. By the end you adore them all.

Whatever your age and gender, it's stirring stuff.

POWER RANGERS Cert 12A, 124 mins WHAT a month for "gay moments". First, LeFou in Beauty and the Beast. Now one of the helmeted, magiccoin-wielding heroes in this children's franchise reboot, aka Yellow Ranger, who admits she's having "girlfriend troubles". Fans of the Nineties TV series may wonder what the $100million budget was spent on. The sets are dingy and the props would struggle to look classy in a pound shop. The plot, along with most of the dialogue, is risible.

Luckily the writers, young actor RJ Cyler (as Blue Ranger) and Elizabeth Banks (Rita Repulsa, left, the film's baddie) seem to be in on the joke. …

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