What films are on at the cinema? The best movies of June 2021 – from A Quiet Place Part II to In The Earth

From action flicks to artful documentaries providing food for thought, June 2021 is provides an eclectic mix for film fans

As we emerge blinking into the bright post-lockdown world, many of us will simply want to squirrel away into a dark room to stick a movie on.

Thankfully, with so many of us having spent the past 15 months cooped up in our own abodes, there are now other places we can do that, with cinemas reopening across much of the UK.

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But is there anything on?

When movie theatres opened again following the UK’s first national lockdown, it seemed there wasn’t much on. Film distributors, concerned by worldwide uncertainty around the state of the virus across the globe, pulled many of their biggest releases, holding them back for a time when things were much calmer.

Well it seems as if that time could well be now, as this time around, cinema screens have a lot more recent films to be showing – great news for movie fans who have missed catching the latest releases on the big screen.

But what exactly is on? Here are just a few of the highlights from June 2021.

A Quiet Place Part II

What is it? Writer-director John Krasinki invites us to hold our breath (and nerve) as we return to the futuristic horror of a world in which sightless otherworldly creatures hunt human prey by sound.

A Quiet Place Part II follows directly from events of the first film with Evelyn Abbott (Emily Blunt), deaf daughter Regan (Millicent Simmonds), son Marcus (Noah Jupe), and the baby leaving the family home to face the terrors of the outside world.

As they venture in silence through the post-apocalyptic wilderness, the Abbott family encounters survivors like Emmett (Cillian Murphy), who have turned their backs on the possibility of humankind fighting back against the creatures.

When can I watch it? 3 June

Gunda

What is it? Shot in black-and-white and entirely without dialogue, this artistic documentary follows the daily life of a pig, two cows, and a one-legged chicken.

With Joaquin Phoenix serving as an executive producer, the film asks audiences to question their relationship with food, and meditates on the mystery of animal consciousness, and the role humanity plays in it.

A slow paced affair, this isn’t one for those who like a bit more zip in their films, but give it the time and patience it deserves, and it might just change your eating habits for the better.

When can I watch it? 4 June

The Killing of Two Lovers

What is it? This critically acclaimed relationship drama received its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, which should give you some idea of its indie credentials.

It’s since been critically acclaimed on the other side of the pond, and follows David, a man desperately trying to keep his family of six together during a separation from his wife Nikki.

They both agree to see other people but David struggles to grapple with his wife's new relationship, in a film Rotten Tomatoes says, “unites deft direction and an artfully assembled cast in service of a powerful story.”

When can I watch it? 4 June

Nobody

What is it? Throwing his hat into the ageing-father-becomes-action-hero ring (think Liam Neeson’s late career renaissance as a hard-nosed hitman in the Taken films) is Bob Odenkirk, who in Nobody plays a man attempting to outrun his chequered past when an act of violent kindness sees him drawn back into a world of hired guns and mercenary work.

The aftermath of the incident strikes a match to Hutch's long-simmering rage, triggering dormant instincts and propelling him on a brutal path that will surface dark secrets and lethal skills in a barrage of fists, gunfire and squealing tires.

A surprisingly solid action romp, it may be more or less mindless, but with well choreographed action sequences and strong performances from all, is worth a watch.

When can I watch it? 9 June

Shiva Baby

What is it? If you like your comedy awkward and squirm-inducing, look no further than Shiva Baby, which tells the story of a college student who, while at the titular Jewish funeral service with her parents, has an awkward encounter with her sugar daddy and her ex-girlfriend.

Taking place almost entirely in real time at one location, and with a musical score likened to that of a horror film, Shiva Baby perfectly captures the claustrophobia of being trapped at a family gathering as your past mistakes catch up to you.

"Shiva Baby transcends its sitcom setup with strong performances and satisfying insights,” say Rotten Tomatoes, who also call the film “ruefully funny”. It’s a shame that it’s only hitting cinemas for one day, so keep an eye out on streaming services if you miss it.

When can I watch it? 9 June

Fargo

What is it? The Coen Brothers’ classic crime film set in the snowy northern US gets a special cinema re-release in honour of its 25th anniversary – a must watch even if you’ve seen it plenty of times before.

Fargo is one of the best films from the directorial brothers’ stellar canon of work, and tells the story of a car salesman so desperate for money he hires two thugs to kidnap his own wife.

The whole thing collapses when the goons shoot a state trooper, and audiences are plunged into the Coens’ brand of dark humour, deft directing and onscreen action that is prone to a violent outburst. A modern day classic.

When can I watch it? 11 June

The Father

What is it? One of the last film’s from 2021’s class of Oscar winners to hit cinemas, The Father tells the story of a man (Best Actor winner Anthony Hopkins) trapped in his London flat by his steadily worsening dementia.

He’s cared for by his daughter (Olivia Colman), but as his deteriorating memory intensifies, his confusion leads him to believe things aren’t quite what they appear, and his own family may be scheming behind his back.

As the audience, we too are never quite sure what’s happening in actuality and what is a product of the man’s muddled mind; with some of the best onscreen performances you’ll likely see all year, you’ll be gripped.

When can I watch it? 11 June

In The Earth

What is it? The inevitable post-pandemic tsunami of pandemic-inspired horror films begins in earnest, but In The Earth comes critically acclaimed, at least.

As the world searches for a cure to a disastrous virus, a scientist and park scout venture deep in the forest for a routine equipment run. Through the night, their journey becomes a terrifying voyage through the heart of darkness, the forest coming to life around them.

Written and directed by Ben Wheatley (Free Fire, High-Rise), the film – which stars Joel Fry and Inside No 9’s Reece Shearsmith – has been described as “a hallucinogenic meditation on the residual pandemic fears that haunt humanity” by Rotten Tomatoes.

When can I watch it? 18 June

Censor

What is it? Another British horror offering for the month of June, Censor tells the story of film censor Enid, who takes pride in her work guarding unsuspecting audiences from the effects of watching gore-filled movies.

Her sense of duty to protect is amplified by guilt over her inability to recall details of the long-ago disappearance of her sister, but when Enid is assigned to review a disturbing film that echoes her hazy childhood memories, she begins to unravel how this eerie work might be tied to her past.

When can I watch it? 25 June

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