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Mortal Engines is set in a post-apocalyptic future where mobile, or ‘traction’ cities scour the earth, plundering its remains and each other. None is bigger or more powerful than London, which has crossed what remains of the English Channel (Brentering?) and is roaming the continent in search of prey to feed its hungry machine. But when budding historian Tom (Robert Sheehan) is thrown together with a feral young woman Hester (Hera Hilmar) after a terrible truth is exposed about leading citizen Thaddeus Valentine (Hugo Weaving) the two work together with the help of outlaws led by Anna Fang (Jihae) to survive and stop the devastating consequences of him using ancient tech for his own devious ends.

Based on the first of four young adult novels by Philip Reeve, Peter Jackson protégé Christian Rivers keeps the action moving in a film that is more Star Wars and Mad Max than The Hobbit.

★★★

Reviewed by Craig Coventry