What Richard Did/ Taken 2/ Sparkle/ Skyfall

First off this month, Irish movie What Richard Did (October 5), directed by Adam and Paul helmer Lenny Abrahamson.

The story follows titular Richard (Jack Reynor), the archetypical, privileged D4 rich kid (think Ross O Carroll Kelly without the irony). Life is all pints of Heino’ and trips on the Dort until Richard does something that shatters the cosy quotidian and destroys the lives of those closest to him. A stellar cast of newbies make this one to watch this month.

Next up this month, Taken 2 (October 5), the follow-up to 2008 smash Taken, with Liam Neeson reprising his role as gravelly-voiced, ass-kicking CIA agent, Bryan Mills. 

This time, however, the shoe is on the other foot (or the machete is in the other hand?) as the family of the bad guys he dispatched in the previous movie are out for revenge and so they snatch his super hot ex-wife (Famke Janssen). Cue lots of explosions and improbably elaborate gunfights as Bry uses his lethal skills to track down his ex-wife and eliminate all who stand in his way.

Now for something completely different: Sparkle (October 5), featuring a final performance from the late, (sort-of) great Whitney Houston. 

The set-up is pretty familiar and the plot itself sounds uncannily like 2006’s Dreamgirls: in 1960s America, three sisters form a girl group – against the wishes of their embittered Mama (Houston), whose own dreams of stardom have long-since been crushed by Jim Crow-era racisim. Soon they become local sensations with major label interest, but, as any ‘90s rapper will tell you: mo’ money, mo’ problems, yo, and soon in-fighting and personal egos threaten to tear the family apart. 

Can Sparkle (played by American Idol winner Jordin Sparks) and her sisters work it out? Or will Mama crash their gig during a crack binge and ruin their big chance? There’s only one way to find out!

Finally this month, the James Bond franchise celebrates 50 years in the blockbuster business with the release of Skyfall (October 26), the 23rd instalment in the super-spy/ super-shagger series. 

The plot (which, lets be honest, in all Bond films is secondary to the grand action set pieces) is thus: after a botched mission Bond (Daniel Craig) is missing and presumed dead.

Meanwhile the identities of every MI6 agent has been leaked on the internet, leading M to be subject ed to a governmental review of her performance. When MI5 is attacked Bond reappears, and together with M, sets about locating nefarious international criminal Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem). But really, who cares what the plot is? With a cast that includes Ralph Fiennes, Javier Bardem, Albert Finney and, of course, Dame Judi Dench and more big budget effects than you can shoot and RPG at, a good time will be had be all. Long live Bond!