WEEK IN MOVIES
SUNDAY DODGEBALL: A TRUE UNDERDOG STORY 8.30PM, ELEVEN ★★★
There’s more going on here than just blows to the crotch and crass one-liners. While a laid-back Vince Vaughn leads a motley bunch of losers through a bizarre sports tournament in Las Vegas, Ben Stiller makes off with the laughs as a sleazy fitness guru.
MONDAY SCARFACE 9.30PM, ONE ★★★★
An infinitely quotable movie that soars operatically when least expected, hitting many piercing notes as it tracks Tony Montana (Al Pacino) on his blazing, cocainefuelled rise and fall. Perfect bliss for lovers of screen crime with a sting in its tale and a spring in its step. Also stars Michelle Pfeiffer.
TUESDAY INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS 10.10AM, FOXTEL MASTERPIECE ★★★★
The year is 1961. The place is New York City. The musical times are about to be a ’changin’. A scruffy, unknown folk singer named Bob Dylan will soon make sure of that. However, scruffy, unknown folk singers are a dime a dozen in the dingy cafes and bars of Greenwich Village. In this film from the great Coen brothers (No Country for Old Men, Fargo), we will be spending a week in the company of one such B-list balladeer. Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) just might have what it takes to make it. There’s just one problem. If there is a line that separates temperamental artists from precious pains-in-the-butt, Llewyn just can’t see it. As this is a Coen movie, the protagonist’s many misplaced delusions of grandeur will be mined for much dark comedy. Co-stars Carey Mulligan and Justin Timberlake.
WEDNESDAY GALLIPOLI 8.30PM, ONE ★★★★
We should be forever grateful that the task of filming one of the defining moments in Australian history went to Peter Weir, one of our greatest directors. An unusual entry in the annals of anti-war films, in that it doesn’t discredit the blind patriotism that sent so many young Australians to an unnecessary demise. Stars Mel Gibson and Mark Lee.
THURSDAY THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL 1.55PM, FOXTEL MASTERPIECE ★★★★
From the great American filmmaker Wes Anderson (Moonrise Kingdom), a lavish and highly enjoyable escape from reality. The year is 1932, and the setting is a fictional five-star crash pad in an equally fictional corner of eastern Europe. It is here we find the mysterious M. Gustave (a hilarious Ralph Fiennes) at the peak of his powers as the Grand Budapest’s celebrated chief concierge. What follows is a majestically madcap adventure, with Gustave and his loyal offsider fighting tooth and nail to keep some formidable enemies at bay.
FRIDAY THE HUNGER GAMES 8.30PM, WIN ★★★
Jennifer Lawrence fronts a compelling action tale depicting a future where poverty-stricken youth must battle to the death as televised entertainment for the rich. Does it stick to the best-selling book? You bet. Hardcore Hunger Gamers will not be disappointed. Lawrence’s portrayal of renegade teen heroine Katniss Everdeen is a cracker. You will follow her every hurried, hunted and haunted step of the way. A solid effort that promises even better things to come.
SATURDAY NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN 8.30PM, SBS ★★★★
The Coen brothers (Fargo) return to brilliant form with a haunting, hard-bitten and incongruously affecting chase flick based on the Cormac McCarthy novel. Josh Brolin stars as a Texan hunter who happens across $2 million in a briefcase, and a frightening Javier Bardem plays a merciless killer out to retrieve the cash. Though several scenes are extremely violent and unapologetically amoral, there is a chilling composure to the film as a whole that will not be denied. Highly recommended.