Alan Dee’s film preview: Melissa hits the road with gran in tow

Brace yourselves, there’s another blockbuster Transformers movie out next week.

Melissa McCarthy in Tammy
Melissa McCarthy in Tammy

But while we wait in trepidation for another dose of special effects stupidity, new releases are a little thin on the ground.

Pick of the crop is Tammy, another attempt to lift Bridesmaids scene-stealer Melissa McCarthy into bona-fide star status.

She’s a bit of a misfit who gets fired from her burger bar job – by real life hubby, co-writer and director Ben Falcone – heads home to find her hubby playing away with neighbour Toni Collette, and decides to escape by heading off with bonkers nan on a long-promised road trip to Niagara Falls.

Nan is a hard-drinking, foul-mouthed Susan Sarandon, and also cropping up are the likes of Allison Janney, Dan Aykroyd and Kathy Bates.

You could sum it up as a sort of Thelma & Louise on Sanatogen, and the quality cast make the most of the material. Can McCarthy carry a film on her own? Probably not, but she doesn’t have to, and there are laughs enough along the way.

Good luck booking tickets for The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window And Disappeared on an automated box office – based on the worldwide bestseller by Jonas Jonasson, it’s another tale of old folk behaving outside their Saga and slippers stereotype – in this case a dynamite expert escaping from the old folk’s home on his 100th birthday, having all sorts of adventures and looking back on his complicated life. Weird, but interesting.

Also released is low-budget sci-fi flick The Anomaly in which former soldier Noel Clarke – who also directs – is taken captive and has to try and work out why, even though he seems to be zoning in and out of his body. It’s ambitious, unsettling, and shows that you don’t need a fortune to make smart sci-fi.