Review: ‘Argylle,’ starring Henry Cavill, Bryce Dallas Howard, Sam Rockwell, Bryan Cranston, Catherine O’Hara, Dua Lipa Ariana DeBose, John Cena and Samuel L. Jackson

January 31, 2024

by Carla Hay

Bryce Dallas Howard and Sam Rockwell in “Argylle” (Photo by Peter Mountain/Universal Pictures/Apple Original Films)

“Argylle”

Directed by Matthew Vaughn

Culture Representation: Taking place in the United States, Europe, and Asia, the action film “Argylle” features a predominantly white cast of characters (with a few African Americans, Latinos, Asians and one multiracial person) representing the working-class, middle-class, wealthy and the criminal underground.

Culture Clash: A famous American book author, who has written a series of novels about a British spy named Argylle, goes on the run with a real spy, who has told her that she’s the target of a criminal spy group.

Culture Audience: “Argylle” will appeal primarily to people who are fans of the movie’s headliners, filmmaker Matthew Vaughn, and action movies that have more style than substance.

Bryan Cranston in “Argylle” (Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures/Apple Original Films)

“Argylle” is an incoherent, bloated mess filled with stupid plot twists, awful dialogue, and a gimmicky cat that looks fake for most of the movie. Henry Cavill is not the main star, even though he gets top billing. “Argylle” is mostly Sam Rockwell acting smug and Bryce Dallas Howard acting terrified. The trailers for “Argylle” are grossly misleading, in terms of certain characters being misrepresented as being more important and having more screen time than what’s actually in the movie.

Directed by Matthew Vaughn and written by Jason Fuchs, “Argylle” is yet another big-budget, globe-trotting spy movie with a flimsy plot that’s just an excuse for filmmakers to overspend on visual effects, lavish locations, and salaries for celebrity stunt casting for cast members who are barely in the movie. “Argylle” has so much idiocy and the worst spy adventure clichés, it’s like the filmmakers took the trash ideas from other spy movies and threw them into the junkpile that is “Argylle.” And with an overly long total running time of 139 minutes (which drags the movie down even further into irritating depths), “Argylle” is like garbage with stench that lingers and gets worse the longer it sticks around.

The central characters of “Argylle” are reclusive novelist Elly Conway (played by Howard) and sarcastic spy Aidan Wild (played by Rockwell), who go on the run from a criminal group of spies called The Division. The opening scenes from “Argylle” are mostly revealed in the movie’s trailers. Elly has a best-selling book series about a dashing and handsome British spy named Argylle (played by Cavill), who is obviously a ripoff of James Bond. Elly has an active imagination where she sometimes envisions Argylle and her other book characters coming to life in front of her.

Argylle’s spy colleagues are his muscular best friend/right-hand man Wyatt (played by John Cena), who does a lot of the work requiring the most physical strength; androgynous field tech Keira (played by Ariana DeBose), an expert strategist who’s often needed to get Argylle and Wyatt out of trouble; and Fowler (played by Richard E. Grant), a senior member of Argylle’s Washington, D.C.-based spy group. Argylle’s chief nemesis is a spy named Lagrange (played by Dua Lipa), who uses seduction and charm to get what she wants. All of these characters from Elly’s “Argylle” novels are not in the movie as much as viewers might think, based on the way the “Argylle” movie was marketed. Lipa’s screen time is barely 10 minutes, with her entire character arc show already shown in the “Argylle” trailers. Grant gets even less screen time.

Elly has just finished her fifth “Argylle” book, which ends on a cliffhanger. (It has something to do with Argylle going to London and whether or not he gets a secret file.) Elly’s meddling and opinionated mother Ruth (played by Catherine O’Hara) reads Elly’s manuscripts and is quick to give criticism. Ruth says that the book should not end on a cliffhanger and tells Elly that the book needs a better, more definitive ending.

Elly, who is very insecure and sensitive, has these doubts swirling in her head when she goes to a personal appearance at a bookstore in Denver, where she answers questions from the audience. She denies speculation that she is a spy in real life, just like spy novelists Ian Fleming or John le Carré actually had experiences working in espionage. When a young man in the audience asks Elly out on a date, she lies and says she already has a date.

Elly’s “date” is really spending time at home with her beloved cat Alfie, a gray-and-white Scottish Fold, who is her constant companion. (In real life, the cat that plays Alfie is named Chip, and he is owned by Claudia Vaughn, Matthew Vaughn’s wife, who is better known by her previous name and profession: supermodel Claudia Schiffer.) Elly is a stereotypical “cat lady” bachelorette, who would rather spend time with her cat than with other people. Elly lives in seclusion in a remote house in an unnamed city in the United States.

Elly has a fear of flying in planes, so she takes other transportation for long-distance trips. On a train ride home after her book appearance, a scruffy-looking and talkative stranger sits in the seat facing her. Elly doesn’t really want him to sit near her, but he ignores her attempt to get him to sit somewhere else. He happens to be reading Elly’s latest “Argylle” book, which he says he’s enjoying. It isn’t long before the stranger, who later introduces himself as Aidan Wild (played by Rockwell), tells Elly that he has noticed that she is the famous author Elly Conway. She tries to deny it, but Aidan isn’t fooled.

As already shown in the “Argylle” trailer, Aidan knew who Elly was all along, because he had been tracking her. And he isn’t the only one who knows that Elly is on the train. About 10 spies from The Division are also on the train. They are on a mission to kidnap Elly, but Aidan fights them all off, with Elly intermittently hallucinating that Aidan is really Argylle during the entire melee. Aidan and Elly then escape from the train by a parachute that Aidan happens to have.

Aidan tells Elly that he’s a spy and that her latest “Argylle” book has strangely predicted real-life spy activities. He tells her about The Division, which Aidan says wants to abduct Elly to force her to write the next chapter of the book so The Division can know in advance what will happen in real life. (Yes, this movie’s plot is as moronic as it sounds.) The fugitive duo’s travels take them to Greece, Colorado, London, France, Hong Kong, and the Arabian Peninsula. Most of “Argylle” was filmed in the United Kingdom.

The Division (which sells spy secrets to the highest bidders) is led by a conniving director named Mr. Ritter (played by Bryan Cranston), who comes across more like a grouchy professor instead of the head of a ruthless crime syndicate. Ritter has a shotgun named Clementine, which he says he inherited from his mother. As soon as Ritter shows ths shotgun and talks about the sentimental value that it has for him, you just know he’s going to use this gun in one of the showdown fight scenes.

Ritter’s chief henchman is Carlos Valdez (played by Tomás Paredes), who is completely generic. Carlos was undercover as an audience member at Elly’s Denver speaking appearance. He was the person who asked her if she’s a real spy. The rest of The Division thugs and fighters are mostly nameless and have no real personalities or storylines.

There’s a poorly written subplot about Aidan looking for an elusive young computer hacker named Bakunin (played by Stanley Morgan), who betrayed Aidan because Aidan overpaid Bakunin for data that Bakunin failed to deliver. Bakunin has now mysteriously disappeared. This subplot is nearly forgotten for a great deal of the movie, until it’s shoved in as an afterthought during the movie’s end credits, which hint that there could be an “Argylle” sequel or spinoff. (Please don’t put more of this “Argylle” nonsense into the world.)

Much of the so-called “comedy” in “Argylle” comes from Elly insisting on bringing Alfie with her everywhere she goes. The cat is kept in Elly’s argyle-pattered, backpack-styled carrying case, which has holes on the side so the cat can breathe. It should come as no surprise that Aidan is allergic to cats. The cat is obviously a computer-generated image (CGI) in most of its scenes. This phoniness takes away a lot of the impact that these comedic scenes would’ve had if the cat looked real.

The Beatles’ “Now and Then” is played several times throughout the movie (the song’s significance to certain characters is eventually revealed), and it’s played often enough that it’s clear that a sizeable chunk of the movie’s budget was spent to license the song. Far superior to the movie’s story is the “Argylle” soundtrack, including the end-credits dance song “Electric Energy,” performed by DeBose, Boy George and Nile Rodgers. The “Argylle” music from composer Lorne Balfe invigorates the movie’s over-the-top action scenes but can’t save the film when the movie drags on with frustrating banality during the dialogue scenes, especially during the long final stretch.

In the production notes for “Argylle,” director Matthew Vaughn (who is also one of the movie’s producers) says one of the main influences for “Argylle” is the 1984 action film “Romancing the Stone,” starring Michael Douglas as a cocky mercenary, and Kathleen Turner as an uptight romance novelist, who go on a misadventure when she enlists him to help her find her kidnapped sister in Colombia. “Argylle” tries desperately and fails to have the winning formula of “Romancing the Stone” and other entertaining movies where two people of the opposite sex are thrown together under dangerous circumstances, as they both argue and pretend that they’re not attracted to each other. Rockwell and Howard (as Aidan and Elly) seem to be doing their best, but they just don’t have the right chemistry together.

Elly should’ve been called Nervous Nellie, because that’s how she is for most of this repetitive movie. Elly constantly has to be rescued and reassured by Aidan, who is supposed to look like an average guy but has almost superhuman combat skills. Aidan and Elly get into tiresome and boring arguments because Aidan wants Elly to take risks that she’s afraid to take. Elly is portrayed as an unfortunate “damsel in distress” stereotype that “Argylle” unconvincingly tries to correct in the last third of the movie, when “Argylle” really falls off the rails into an irredeemable wasteland of cinematic muck.

And the question must be asked: Why is Samuel L. Jackson in this movie? Is he in some kind of personal contest to see how many sidekick characters he can play in big-budget films where he’s usually a loudmouth, know-it-all “elder statesman,” who gets sidelined because the main stars get most of the action? That’s essentially what Jackson is in “Argylle,” where he plays Alfred Solomon, a former deputy director of the CIA, who now lives in exile at a vineyard in France.

Predictably, Elly and Aidan end up visiting Alfred at this vineyard, which has a control room with giant video monitors that can see a lot of the action going on in the movie. It’s just a way to have scenes of Alfred reacting to whatever shenanigans that Elly and Aidan are up to in their globetrotting, as these mismatched runaways try to evade getting captured by The Division. Sofia Boutella has a small and thankless role as Saba Al-Badr, a mysterious person described as “The Keeper of Secrets,” who lives in a palace on the Arabian Peninsula.

“Argylle” could have been much more entertaining if it had a story that was engaging, instead of trying too hard to look “daring” with garishly filmed fight scenes that look distractingly artificial. (A fight scene involving ice skating on an oil-covered floor is an example of this egregiousness.) Elly’s fantasy visions about the world of Argylle are awkwardly placed in the movie. The acting performances are adequate, but the co-star chemistry is very forced and unconvincing. Just like the CGI cat in the movie, “Argylle” is as fake and fluffy as it looks, but the end result is not as cute.

Universal Pictures will release “Argylle” in U.S. cinemas on February 2, 2024.

Review: ‘Prisoners of the Ghostland,’ starring Nicolas Cage, Sofia Boutella and Bill Moseley

April 18, 2022

by Carla Hay

Sofia Boutella and Nicolas Cage in “Prisoners of the Ghostland” (Photo courtesy of RLJE Films)

“Prisoners of the Ghostland”

Directed by Sion Sono

Culture Representation: Taking place in Japan, in the fictional city called Samurai Town and in a fictional area called Ghostland, the action film “Prisoners of the Ghostland” features a cast of predominantly white and Asian characters representing the working-class, middle-class and wealthy.

Culture Clash: A mysterious man is forced to find a ruthless leader’s enslaved concubine, who has escaped. 

Culture Audience: “Prisoners of the Ghostland” will appeal primarily to people who are fans of Nicolas Cage and anyone who likes action movies that have more style than substance.

Bill Moseley (center) in “Prisoners of the Ghostland” (Photo courtesy of RLJE Films)

“Prisoners of the Ghostland” has impressive production design and cinematography, but this visually stylish action flick is too much of an incoherent mess in all other areas to be a truly enjoyable experience. Nicolas Cage’s die-hard fans, who automatically praise everything he does, will probably like “Prisoners of the Ghostland” just because he’s in the movie, in spite of the film’s very obvious failings. Unfortunately, the “Prisoners of the Ghostland” story just too cliché, but the filmmakers try to distract from this unoriginality by cluttering up the movie with predictable fight scenes and some bizarre characters.

Directed by Sion Sono, “Prisoners of the Ghostland”(which takes place in fictional areas of Japan) is essentially a post-apocalyptic film that blends elements of Western movies and samurai movies. “Prisoners of the Ghostland” (written by Aaron Hendry and Reza Sixo Safai) has the over-used “male hero who has to save a woman” concept as the basis for the protagonist’s main mission in this story. Maybe it’s a joke or maybe the filmmakers were just too lazy to come up with a name for the protagonist (played by Cage), but he doesn’t have a name in the movie. He’s listed in the film credits as Hero.

The Hero character is not exactly an upstanding, morally righteous person. He’s in prison for a bank robbery where he and his partner in crime, named Psycho (played by Nick Cassavetes), murdered several innocent bystanders. (This bank robbery is shown in a very bloody flashback.)

Psycho was in a prison transport vehicle that crashed into a truck carrying nuclear waste, which caused a massive explosion, leading to much of the area becoming a wasteland disaster area. (“Prisoners of the Ghostland” was filmed in Japan and Los Angeles. The movie had its world premiere at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival.)

A corrupt and twisted leader named the Governor (played by Bill Moseley) has created a settlement community called Samurai Town, which is a combination of a modern Japanese city and American Old West village. As such, people in Samurai Town either dress in traditional Japanese clothing or cowboy/cowgirl gear. The Governor keeps women as sex slaves, whom he calls his “granddaughters.”

One of the enslaved women has escaped. Her name is Bernice (played by Sofia Boutella), and the Governor lets Hero out of prison to force Hero to find Bernice and bring her back to the Governor. As part of this mercenary task, the Governor forces Hero to wear a black leather outfit that is rigged with a detonator. The bomb on the suit will go off if Hero does not return Bernice in two days.

There are voice recognition buttons on the outfit’s sleeves, so that Bernice can speak into these devices to confirm that she is with Hero. Electro-chargers have been placed around Hero’s neck and testicles that will detonate if he tries to take off this outfit before the task is completed. Instead of taking the black Toyota Celica that has been offered to him, Hero instead decides to leave on a bicycle.

The Governor has a samurai bodyguard/enforcer named Yasujiro (played by Tak Sakaguchi), who catches up to Hero and tells him to use the car, and Hero obliges. However, Hero ends up crashing the car and is carried into a bombed-out area called Ghostland, which can be best be described as a rebellious steampunk community. The leader of the Ghostland tribe is the demented Enoch (played by Charles Glover), who knows that Bernice is there, but he’s doesn’t want to let her go.

You know where this story is headed, of course. The rest of “Prisoners of the Ghostland” is just a series of one obstacle after another for Hero, who gets into a lot of fights along the way. And did we mention that there are also some zombies in this post-apocalyptic world? (How unoriginal and unnecessary.)

Unfortunately, none of the uneven acting in “Prisoners of the Ghostland” elevates this shoddily told story. The dialogue in this movie is simply atrocious. “Prisoners of the Ghostland” tries every hard to be perceived as a zany action movie, but there’s no wit, charm or unpredictability to this story. For an action flick, it’s got dreadfully sluggish pacing in too many areas.

“Prisoners of the Ghostland” also has a lot of characters that are either too bland or so wacky that they’re trying too hard and are therefore annoying. Cage is just doing another version of the angsty loner type that he has already done in many of his other films. The villains are hollow. And most of the supporting characters—including Bernice’s friends Stella (played by Lorena Kotô), Nancy (played by Canon Nawata) and Susie (played by Yuzuka Nakaya)—are underwritten and underdeveloped.

It seems like “Prisoners of the Ghostland” was made with the idea that it will be a cult classic that will inspire other movies, similar to what director George Miller’s 1979 post-apocalyptic action classic “Mad Max” ended up doing for sci-fi action cinema in a “wasteland” setting. However, “Prisoners of the Ghostland” doesn’t have enough meaningful characters to care about to see again in spinoffs or sequels. “Prisoners of the Ghostland” is just an empty exercise from filmmakers who think that all you need to make a good action movie are memorable set designs, a well-known actor as a headliner, and a variety of fight scenes. That’s not enough to save “Prisoners of the Ghostland” from being a disappointing mishmash of superficial self-indulgence and amateurish storytelling.

RLJE Films released “Prisoners of the Ghostland” in select U.S. cinemas, on digital and VOD on September 17, 2021. The movie was released on Blu-ray and DVD on November 16, 2021.

Review: ‘Settlers’ (2021), starring Sofia Boutella, Brooklynn Prince, Ismael Cruz Córdova, Jonny Lee Miller and Nell Tiger Free

July 31, 2021

by Carla Hay

Sofia Boutella and Brooklynn Prince in “Settlers” (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)

“Settlers” (2021)

Directed by Wyatt Rockefeller

Culture Representation: Taking place on Mars over an approximate 10-year period, the sci-fi drama “Settlers” features a racially diverse cast of characters (white, Latino and indigenous people) representing humans who have settled on Mars.

Culture Clash: A husband, a wife and their young daughter live in isolation on Mars when their worst fear comes true: They become victims of a home invasion.

Culture Audience: “Settlers” will appeal primarily to people who are interested in “danger in outer space” movies, but viewers should be prepared for a movie that quickly loses steam halfway through the film.

Ismael Cruz Córdova in “Settlers” (Photo courtesy of IFC Films/IFC Midnight)

The sci-fi drama “Settlers” seems like it was an idea that was originally conceived as a short film, but somehow it got stretched into increasingly dull junk that trudges to an unsurprising and lackluster end. There are moments of suspense early on in the film, but they’re not enough to compensate for a movie that wastes a lot of time showing unhappy people isolated in a house, or people running from the front yard to the house and back again. The movie repeats these scenarios too often for its own good.

“Settlers” (which takes place on Mars) is the feature-film debut of writer/director Wyatt Rockefeller, who shows some potential in being able to come up with an intriguing concept for a movie. The problem is that the follow-through in the storytelling is very weak. “Settlers,” which has a small number of people in the cast, needed better character development and more realistic human interactions.

More thought seems to have been put into the film’s first of three acts rather than the second and third acts. The result is an uneven movie where viewers will be disappointed at how much the story deflates into a nonsensical bore. “Settlers” doesn’t even explain how humans can survive in Mars’ atmosphere (which is 95% carbon dioxide) without any type of breathing devices.

“Settlers,” which was actually filmed in South Africa, doesn’t even look like it takes place on another planet. It just look like a typical desert area on Earth. The deficiencies in the movie’s production design can be somewhat excused by the movie having a low-budget, but there are low-budget sci-fi movies that take place on a planet other than Earth that still make more of an effort to simulate a planet that looks different from Earth. What’s more detrimental to “Settlers” than the unimaginative production design is how badly it bungles the “home invasion” part of the story.

The three chapters in “Settlers” are named after the three adults who have the most screen time and the most significant speaking roles in the movie. Chapter 1 is titled “Reza,” Chapter 2″ is titled “Ilsa,” and Chapter 3 is titled “Jerry.” Who are these people? By the end of the movie, you still won’t know too much about them except the basics, such as where they came from and why they’re living on Mars.

Reza (played by Johnny Lee Miller), his wife Ilsa (played by Sofia Boutella) and their curious 9-year-old daughter Remmy (played by Brooklynn Prince) are living in isolation in a house that looks more New Age than Space Age. Remmy’s only companion is a young pig named Cassie, which is kept in a small fenced-in area in the front yard. It’s eventually revealed that this family of three settled on Mars as refugees from Earth because Reza has a shady past and he wanted to start a new life on another planet. Don’t expect details on what Reza’s past misdeeds were, because the move never reveals that information.

Reza and Ilsa seem very afraid of anyone finding out where they are. They are armed with guns and knives. They always seem to be on the alert for sounds of other people who might be in the vicinity. In an early scene in the movie, when Reza is saying good night to Remmy before she goes to sleep, she asks him, “Are there people nearby?”

Reza seems nervous when he replies, “No! It’s just us.” Reza reminds Remmy that they’ve come to Mars because “we wanted more” than what Earth could offer. He also assures Remmy that someday, Mars will be just like Earth. In the meantime, the family has a greenhouse where they grow their own food. There’s no explanation for where they get water in this very desert-looking environment.

One day, the family wakes up to see that the windows at the front of their house have been vandalized with large block letters that read “LEAVE.” Funnily enough, the letters look like they were written from inside the house, which is a detail that the filmmakers didn’t think through, because it’s implied that the vandalism was supposed to took place outside the house. Unless the vandals knew how to do mirror-reverse writing, it doesn’t make sense that the words “LEAVE” would be written as if done from the inside, not outside.

Soon after discovering this vandalism, people can be heard howling like wolves in the distance outside. As a frightened Ilsa asks, “What if it’s the son?” Reza abruptly replies, “Don’t!” He grabs a gun, runs outside and yells, “Come on!,” as if it’s a dare for any strangers to come and get them. It’s a puzzling move from someone who’s trying to protect his family from a home invasion.

Remmy has a tendency to wander outside in the barren yard (usually to play with the pig) when her parents aren’t looking. Ilsa notices that Remmy has been missing while Reza was foolishly daring possible home invaders to go to the house. In a panic, Ilsa calls for Remmy, who’s in the front yard, just as some shadowy figures come out of nowhere and chase after Remmy, who’s running desperately back to the house.

An unnamed woman (played by Natalie Walsh) and an unnamed man (played by Matthew Van Leeve) have run the closest to Remmy. The woman snatches Remmy in attempt to kidnap her. Reza begins shooting, while Ilsa runs outside with a knife. And some people end up dead. It’s enough to say that Remmy is one of the survivors.

The character of Jerry (played by Ismael Cruz Córdova) is a man in his late 20s or early 30s, and he shows up unexpectedly at the house not long after this invasion. He’s armed with a gun and a knife, but he doesn’t hurt anyone in the house. However, one of the parents attacks him, but Jerry doesn’t kill that person in self-defense.

Instead, he makes a bargain: If he gets to stay in the house with the family for 30 days without being physically attacked or ambushed, he will leave his gun behind and leave them alone permanently. In the meantime, Jerry expects to be fed and taken care of in the home, and he offers to protect the house residents in return. He eventually reveals that his parents used to own the house, and he grew up there, which is why he came back.

Are Remmy’s parents squatters? And what happened to the house’s previous residents? Those questions are answered in the movie, which shows that there are reasons for Jerry and the house residents to feel anger and resentment toward each other. Jerry comes across as someone who is capable of doing very bad things and who has secrets of his own, but he seems to be sincere about keeping his end of the bargain. He has a primitive robot that Remmy has named Steve, which she treats like a pet dog.

Meanwhile, the movie has a somewhat useless subplot where Remmy sees something that makes her angry, so she runs away from home. There’s a badly filmed sequence where it looks like she gets trapped in a tunnel-like area that has a door that suddenly comes down in the entrance. But then, the next thing you know she’s back at the house, with no explanation how she got herself out of that predicament. The movie never goes beyond a limited area, nor does it explain what other people on Mars might be doing outside this house or how many other settlers from Earth might be on Mars.

The movie’s last chapter is a fast-forward of about 10 years, with Remmy in her late teens (played by Nell Tiger Free). It’s by far the most ill-conceived and uninspired chapter of this story, because the plot doesn’t really go anywhere until toward the end when Remmy does something that is very easy to predict. All of the actors are given unimaginative and stiff dialogue, so they don’t really get to show much talent in this movie, although Prince fares the best in trying to depict a believable array of emotions.

If your idea of an entertaining Mars sci-fi movie is to watch people prepare meals in a very Earth-looking kitchen, climb on rocks, hang out in a desolate-looking front yard, and have boring conversations in a very Earth-looking house where everyone looks uncomfortable, then maybe you’ll find some enjoyment from watching “Settlers.” These tedious scenarios make up more than half of the movie. But for everyone else who might expect an unpredictable story with interesting characters, you shouldn’t have to settle for “Settlers.” There are plenty of better and more memorable movies about life on Mars.

IFC Films/IFC Midnight released “Settlers” in select U.S. cinemas, on digital and VOD on July 23, 2021.

2017 CinemaCon: What to expect at this year’s event

March 19, 2017

by Carla Hay

CinemaCon

CinemaCon, the annual convention for the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO), will be held March 27-30, 2017 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. About 5,000 people attend the event, which gives movie studios the chance to showcase what they expect to be their biggest hits of the year.

Movie studios scheduled to give their presentations at the event are Sony Pictures Entertainment on March 27; STX Films, Paramount Pictures and Walt Disney Pictures on March 28; Universal Pictures, Focus Features and Warner Bros. Pictures on March 29; Universal Pictures, Amazon Studios and Lionsgate on March 30. Although most of the presentations only include clips and trailers, a few movies will be screened in advance in their entirety. Disney’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” and Lionsgate’s “The Hitman’s Bodyguard.”

CinemaCon culminates with the CinemaCon Big Screen Achievement Awards ceremony, which will take place March 30.

Here are the announced winners of the awards:

Cinema Icon Award
Goldie Hawn

Goldie Hawn
Goldie Hawn (Photo courtesy of PBS)

In a career spanning more than 50 years, Goldie Hawn has won an Oscar (for 1969’s “Cactus Flower”) and starred in such hits as 1980’s “Private Benjamin,” 1987’s “Overboard” and 1996’s “The First Wives Club”. In 2017, she returns to the big screen after a 15-year hiatus by co-starring with Amy Schumer in the comedy “Snatched.”

CinemaCon Vanguard Award
Salma Hayek

Salma Hayek
Salma Hayek (Photo by Lacey Terrell)

Salma Hayek, who received an Oscar nomination for starring as artist Frida Khalo in the 2002 biopic “Frida,” has appeared in a number of hit movies, including 2010’s “Grown Ups,” 2013’s “Grown Ups 2” and 2011’s “Puss in Boots.” She has four movies lined up for release in 2017: “Beatriz at Dinner,” “Drunk Parents,” “How to Be a Latin Lover” and “The Hitman’s Bodyguard.”

Distinguished Decade of Achievement in Film
Naomi Watts

Naomi Watts
Naomi Watts (Photo courtesy of Exclusive Releasing)

Nominated twice for an Oscar (for 2003’s “21 Grams” and 2013’s “The Impossible”), Naomi Watts has starred in practically every movie genre, including the blockbusters “King Kong” (2005) and “The Ring” (2002). In the past 10 years, she has received acclaim for her roles in the Oscar-winning movie “Birdman” (2014),  “Mother and Child” (2009) and “Eastern Promises” (2007).

CinemaCon Male Star of the Year
Charlie Hunnam

Charlie Hunnam
Charlie Hunnam (Photo by Aidan Monaghan)

Charlie Hunnam, one of the stars of the FX TV series “Sons of Anarchy,” has headlined the 2013 action flick “Pacific Rim.” In 2017, he stars in “The Lost City of Z” and “King Arthur.”

CinemaCon Female Star of the Year
Jessica Chastain

Jessica Chastain
Jessica Chastain (Photo courtesy of EuropaCorp)

Jessica Chastain has received Oscar nominations for her roles in 2011’s “The Help” and 2012’s “Zero Dark Thirty.” Her other big hits include 2014’s “Interstellar” and 2015’s “The Martian.” In 2017, her movies are “The Zookeeper’s Wife,” “Woman Walks Ahead” and “Molly’s Game.”

CinemaCon Director of the Year
Jordan Peele

Jordan Peele (Photo by Justin Lubin)

Jordan Peele rose to fame as part of the Emmy-winning comedy duo Key & Peele (with Keegan-Michael Key), who co-starred in an eponymous TV series and the 2016  film “Keanu.” Peele wrote, directed and was one of the producers of the 2017 horror thriller “Get Out,” his directorial debut. With the smash success of “Get Out,” Peele became the first African-American director to have his directorial debut gross more than $100 million at the U.S. box office.

CinemaCon Action Star of the Year
John Cena

John Cena
John Cena (Photo by Mary Cybulski)

Although John Cena has had well-received supporting roles in the 2015 hit comedies “Trainwreck,” “Sisters” and “Daddy’s Home,” his WWE background paved the way for him to star in mostly action flicks. In 2017, he stars in “The Wall,” a war drama co-starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson.

CinemaCon Male Star of Tomorrow Award
Ansel Elgort

Ansel Elgort
Ansel Elgort (Photo courtesy of TBS)

Ansel Elgort is best known for starring in 2014’s “The Fault in Our Stars” and the “Divergent” series. In 2017, his movies include “Baby Driver,” “Jonathan,” “Billionaire Boys Club” and “November Criminals.”

CinemaCon Female Star of Tomorrow Award
Sofia Boutella

Sofia Boutella
Sofia Boutella (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for Paramount Pictures)

Sofia Boutella has had high-profile roles in 2015’s “Kingsman: The Secret Service” and 2016’s “Star Trek Beyond.” Her movies set for release in 2017 include “The Mummy” (starring Tom Cruise) and “Atomic Blonde” (starring Charlize Theron).

CinemaCon Breakthrough Performer of the Year
Brenton Thwaites

Brenton Thwaites
Brenton Thwaites (Photo by David Dare Parker)

After starring in movies that failed to find a large audience (2014’s “The Giver,” 2014’s “Son of a Gun,” 2013’s “Oculus,”), Brenton Twaites is poised to have a major blockbuster breakthrough with 2017’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,” starring Johnny Depp. Thwaites’ other movies releasing in 2017 are “Office Uprising” and “An Interview With God.”

March 24, 2017 UPDATE:

CinemaCon Rising Star of the Year
Isabela Moner

Isabella Moner (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

Isabela Moner is an actress and singer whose on-screen roles include starring in the Nickelodeon series “100 Things to Do Before High School” (from 2014 to 2016) and the 2016 feature film “Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life.” In 2017, she is co-starring with Mark Walhberg in her biggest movie so far: the action sequel “Transformers: The Last Knight.” She also has a voice role in the 2017 animated film “The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature.”

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