What's on the big screen this week
THE September school holidays haven't officially started yet in most areas but The Secret Life of Pets is already a big hit at the cinema.
The animated film topped the Australian box office following its debut last week and is sure to be a popular option for entertaining the kids during their break.
But there's plenty on offer for parents including Bridget Jones's Baby, Aussie comedy Spin Out, the documentary The Beatles: Eight Days A Week and Tom Hank's acclaimed turn in Sully.
Here are this week's highlights of the big screen and why you should see them:
Bridget Jones's Baby (M)
British publishing executive Bridget Jones as she enters her 40s and finds herself torn between two men, either of whom could be the father of her unborn child.
Why you should see it: Bridget's latest exploits are laugh-out-loud funny, with director Sharon Maguire recreated the magic fans loved so much in the first film. Read the review.
Pete's Dragon (PG)
For years, old wood carver Mr Meacham has delighted local children with his tales of the fierce dragon that resides deep in the woods. To his daughter Grace, who works as a forest ranger, these stories are little more than tall tales until she meets a mysterious orphan who claims to live in the woods with a giant, green dragon named Elliott.
Why you should see it: Full of awe, magic and imagination, Pete's Dragon is ideal for children ranging from aged seven and up with aspects older members of the family also will be sure to enjoy. Read our student reporter's review.
Spin Out (M)
Billy and Lucy form one of their town's most formidable Ute driving teams. When Billy takes one risky car stunt too far, Lucy declares she is moving to the city - sending Billy into a spin. Amid the mayhem of the town's annual Bachelors & Spinsters party, Billy only has one night to wake up to his true feelings for his best friend.
Why you should see it: Spin Out isn't the LOL comedy it could have been but as a bit of harmless fun based around something as dinkum as Vegemite on toast, this is a little piece of Straya that we can all relate to. Read the review.
The Beatles: Eight Days A Week (M)
Based on the first part of The Beatles' career (1962-1966) - the period in which they toured and captured the world's acclaim - Ron Howard's film will explore how John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr came together to become The Beatles.
Why you should see it: This definitive look at The Beatles' touring years is a must see for any fan of the Fab Four with rarely seen footage, insightful interviews and, of course, great music. Read the review.
Blair Witch (MA 15+)
AFTER discovering a video showing what he believes to be his sister's experiences in the demonic woods of the Blair Witch, James and a group of friends head to the forest in search of his lost sibling.
Why you should see it: This long-awaited second sequel sticks to the same handheld style of footage as the original.
On January 15, 2009, the world witnessed Captain "Sully" Sullenberger (Tom Hanks) gliding his disabled plane onto the frigid waters of the Hudson River, saving the lives of all 155 aboard. However, even as Sully was being heralded by the public and the media for his unprecedented feat of aviation skill, an investigation was unfolding that threatened to destroy his reputation and his career.
Why you should see it: Director Clint Eastwood tells this story very earnestly and Hanks gives a tremendous performance as a hero under pressure. The crash scene is also very well done. Read the review.
The Secret Life of Pets (G)
Taking place in a Manhattan apartment building, Max's life as a favourite pet is turned upside down, when his owner brings home a sloppy mongrel named Duke. They have to put their quarrels behind when they find out that an adorable white bunny named Snowball is building an army of abandoned pets determined to take revenge on all happy-owned pets and their owners.
Why you should see it: The idea of the film is simple: what happens to our pet when you leave for work every day? Intriguing? Yes. Enough to fill two hours of an engaging family film? Actually, yes. Read the review.