For most critics, it’s usually the obscure, the arch, the other, that garners their highest praise.


Why go with the flow when, again and again, art of any great worth has always been that which goes against the grain. That both reflects their turbulent times and yet transcends its birth date, and becomes a timeless piece of work.


So, what film managed to achieve 100% critical approval in 2018, the one film that had all the critics, all over the world, reaching for their superlatives?


Eh, Paddington 2, my friend.


Yep, the sweet, inventine, funny and heartwarming sequel to 2014’s sweet, inventive, funny and heartwarming big-screen adaptation of the late Michael Bond’s 1958 creation scored higher with critics than any other film in 2018. And that’s one hell of an achievement for what is essentially a kids film. And a sequel, to boot.


“You just never know how a film is going to be received,” says Paddington 2 director Paul King. “You generally think you’ve made a great film, and that everyone will love it, but, that dream rarely comes true. With Paddington 2, it just did. Spectacularly.


“I’m going to try and hold onto that feeling for as long as I can, because I know there’s a failure waiting for me, just around the corner…”


Ah, spoken like a true Paddington. You can find out what the fuss is all about when the marmalade-loving little fella – alongside the likes of Brendan Gleeson, Hugh Bonneville, Hugh Grant and Sally Hawkins – hits the big screen at The Whale on Sunday, February 3rd, at 2pm.


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