What’s opening with Sam Cleveland......................
Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away (G)
The colour and flair of the world-renowned Cirque du Soleil comes to the big screen in a curious mix of 3-D narrative fantasy and formal stage show.
They say: Reviews have been lukewarm, with the loose plot failing to hold interest and the cast’s acrobatic feats losing impact in the translation from theatre to screen. Wesay: Director Andrew Adamson’s ( The Lion,
The Witch and The Wardrobe) overhyped concert film doesn’t have enough ‘movie’ to support the stunning – as always – circus elements. Running time 97 minutes. Screens at Harbour Town, Tweed City, Robina, Pacific Fair, Australia Fair, Nerang.
The Last Stand (MA)
Arnold Schwarzenegger’s plays an aged small-town sheriff facing off against a vicious Mexican drug kingpin on the run for the border after escaping US custody.
They say: A commercial flop in the US, despite not-bad critical approval as a lively bit of nonsense.
Wesay: Arnie plays it very smart, recruiting rock ’n’ roll Korean director Jee Woon-Kim ( The Good, The Bad and
The Weird) and a strong supporting cast (Luis Guzman, Forest Whitaker, Johnny Knoxville) for a good blend of comfort and novelty. (Report, Page 8.) Running time 107 minutes. Screens at Robina, Pacific Fair, Australia Fair, Coolangatta, Harbour Town, Yatala Drive-in, Nerang.
Beautiful Creatures (M)
Film adaptation of The Caster Chronicles (spooky teen books riding Twilight’s coat-tails) follows young lovers Ethan and Lena, offspring of rival black magic clans in the gothic American south.
They say: Mostly superficial. Suffers from an overly designed sub-Tim Burton look. The young leads and strong supporting cast (Jeremy Irons, Emma Thompson, Viola Davis) are appealing.
Wesay: Cookie-cutter stuff directed by Richard LaGravenese ( Freedom Writers) that will probably work for young girls and no one else. (Report, Page 10.) Running time 124 minutes. Screens at Robina, Pacific Fair, Australia Fair, Coolangatta, Harbour Town, Tweed City, Yatala Drive-in, Nerang.
A devoted couple in their eighties find their love and relationship tested by the anguish of dementia in this poised drama from Michael Haneke ( The White Ribbon, Funny Games).
They say: Critical adoration and Oscar nominations including Best Picture, Best Actress for Emmanuelle Riva and Best Director for two-time Palmes d’Or winner Haneke.
Wesay: Among the most intimate dramas ever filmed but a frankly devastating experience, particularly for couples. Haneke is our quiet tip for an upset Best Director Oscar win. Running time 128 minutes. Screens at The Arts Centre Gold Coast.
STEVEN Spielberg goes into the Oscars with the most nominations for his presidential Lincoln, but the momentum is all with Ben Affleck’s thriller Argo in the Academy Awards home straight.
The Hollywood veteran and the young director vie for the best picture crown. Other frontrunners are hot on their heels, in one of the least predictable Oscar races in recent memory.
Taiwan-born Ang Lee’s 3D spectacular Life of Pi, Osama bin Laden manhunt movie Zero Dark Thirty and romcom Silver Linings Playbook could all be a chance for an Oscar, the climax of Tinseltown’s annual awards season.
Spielberg and Lee are frontrunners for best director, while Lincoln star Daniel Day-Lewis is considered a shoo-in for best actor. For best actress the hot money is on Jessica Chastain for her role in Zero Dark Thirty or Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence.
But Affleck’s Iran hostage drama, despite only winning seven nominations – against 12 for Lincoln, 11 for Life of Pi and eight each for Silver Linings Playbook and Les Miserables – has an edge for best picture. It won top prizes at a string of key awards shows including the Golden Globes, the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), Producers Guild of America (PGA), the Directors Guild of America (DGA) and Britain’s BAFTA.
Nominees presenting include Chastain – best actress frontrunner for playing a relentless CIA agent on the hunt for bin Laden, in Oscar-winning director Kathryn Bigelow’s controversial Zero Dark Thirty. But Lawrence, star of the Hunger Games could also win the category for her portrayal of mixed-up Tiffany to Bradley Cooper’s bipolar ex-teacher in Silver Linings Playbook.
Cooper vies for best actor, as does Australian Hugh Jackman for Les Miserables, Joaquin Phoenix for The
Master and Denzel Washington for Flight – but Day-Lewis is forecast for a record third Oscar for Lincoln.
For best director, 66-year-old Spielberg will hope for his first Oscar since Saving Private Ryan in 1999. He is up against Lee – whose Brokeback
Mountain won best picture in 2006 – Michael Haneke for his Cannes-winning Amour, David O Russell for Silver
Linings Playbook and Benh Zeitlin for Beasts of the Southern Wild.
Channel 9 and NBN telecast the 85th Academy Awards live from Hollywood, on Monday from 11.30am with a replay at 9.30pm.
Oscars day opens with a special edition of morning show Today with Lisa Wilkinson, Richard Wilkins and Richard Reid reporting from the red carpet. Wilkins files reports on Mornings and throughout the day leading up to an Oscars edition of Extra at 11am and the Oscars telecast at 11.30am.
On Tuesday, Today’s Wilkinson, Wilkins and Reid will report live on a post-Oscars wrap with Aussies in Hollywood.
Emmanuelle Riva stars in director Michael Haneke’s Oscar-nominated drama Amour.
Life of Pi’s Suraj Sharma