THE PRINCESS DIARIES (2001)
★★ The ultimate movie for 10-yearold girls who think they are 14 going on 18. Which is fitting in a topsy-turvy kind of way, because at the time of shooting, star Anne Hathaway was an 18-year-old playing a character aged 14 who acts as if she’s 10. Hathaway is schoolgirl Mia Thermopolis, a frizzy-haired geekess in line to rule a minuscule kingdom somewhere in Europe. Frothy. L.P. There has never been a chef quite like Ferran Adria — the little Spanish genius behind elBulli, the restaurant near Barcelona that was voted the world’s best, four years in succession. Adria is clearly a magnificent chef, and a creative genius. But watch him here — part chef, part scientist— and ask yourself one serious question: Do I really want to eat this food? The season of this slice of distressed animal life series draws to a close tonight with an episode revealing the enthusiasm of labradors for eating just about anything placed in front of them. In this case, Archie the lab has polished off enough snail bait to rid, say, an entire suburb of the slimy blighters. Poor old Archie is suffering convulsions. Just as well, then, that Dr Chris is on hand to save the day. The law takes a dim view of love, according to shameless barrister Cleaver Greene (Richard Roxburgh), the ‘‘rake’’ of this ribald but entertaining series. Tonight, the improbable (we must assume) barrister is called upon to defend what remains of the honour of a celebrity chef who has married well, but perhaps too often. Way too often. The acreage of bare flesh flaunted is, as always, generous. Much rides on this series and, certainly, it looks classy enough and has moments of furious action and a whiteknuckle tension. But also, there are enough flash-backs here to induce cluster headaches, even for extraterrestrials. Tonight, we focus on Leila who has been kidnapped by very bad folk. I think. Or maybe it’s a flashback. Or a Martian. Cool, though. I think.