WEEK IN MOVIES

WITH LEIGH PAATSCH

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - TV Guide - - NEWS -

SUN­DAY

LIFE OF PI 8PM, TEN A teenage In­dian boy (gifted new­comer Su­raj Sharma) and a wild Ben­gal tiger are the sole sur­vivors of a tragic ship­wreck. For the next 227 days, the duo drift across the ocean in a small lifeboat, look­ing to stay alive in spite of the threat each poses to the other. What fol­lows is not just an epic tale of sur­vival, but also a poetic med­i­ta­tion upon na­ture as a whole and hu­man na­ture in its many parts. An ex­tra­or­di­nary work that of­fers much to look at, think about and, above all else, feel. Highly rec­om­mended.

★★★★

MON­DAY

STAR­GATE 9.30PM, GO! An un­gainly but in­ter­est­ing blend of sci­ence-fic­tion and an old-fash­ioned, sand­blown desert epic. The Black­list’s James Spader plays an Egyp­tol­o­gist who cracks a code to open­ing an an­cient Star­gate (an in­ter­plan­e­tary time-travel gate­way) and then ac­com­pa­nies a mil­i­tary ex­pe­di­tion led by ace army oper­a­tive Kurt Rus­sell to ex­plore the strange world on the other side of the galaxy. A slog­ging fight for free­dom en­sues as our good guys try to lib­er­ate the pop­u­la­tion of a prim­i­tive planet from the sin­is­ter en­slav­ery of an im­mor­tal time lord, played by The Cry­ing Game’s Jaye David­son.

★★★

TUES­DAY

THE MEX­I­CAN 9.30PM, ELEVEN Though Ju­lia Roberts and Brad Pitt are the stars of this en­joy­ably edgy leftof-cen­tre road movie, it is Roberts’ scenes with the late James Gan­dolfini (play­ing a sen­si­tive new-age hit­man) that will re­ally pack a punch with most view­ers. Over­all, a very well-made and wellacted crime com­edy which com­pares favourably with George Clooney and J.Lo’s Out of Sight. Worth a look.

★★★★

WED­NES­DAY

MOON 1PM, NINE In space, no one can hear you scream. On the moon, the si­lence is deaf­en­ing. Just ask astro­naut-ge­ol­o­gist Sam Bell (Sam Rock­well). He has been up there for the best part of three years. Alone. So be­gins Moon, an eerily mys­ti­fy­ing tour­na­ment of mind games where the au­di­ence has no choice but to play along. And the truth – when it is fi­nally re­vealed – is stranger than mere sci­encefic­tion. Clears a con­sid­er­able debt to the Stan­ley Kubrick master­piece 2001: A Space Odyssey by sub­tly up­end­ing ex­pec­ta­tions at ex­actly the right times. Both an in­cred­i­bly ab­sorb­ing and sur­pris­ingly mov­ing cin­e­matic ex­pe­ri­ence. Good stuff.

★★★★

THURS­DAY

MORN­ING GLORY 9.30PM, ELEVEN Har­ri­son Ford throws some cur­mud­geonly shapes

★★

as an age­ing “se­ri­ous’’ news­caster sucked into a silly break­fast TV show. The youth­ful yin to his can­tan­ker­ous yang is Rachel McA­dams as the as­pir­ing pro­ducer try­ing to take the show to the top of the morn­ing rat­ings. Co-stars Pa­trick Wilson, Diane Keaton.

FRI­DAY

THE HOB­BIT: AN UN­EX­PECTED JOUR­NEY 8.30PM, NINE This is the first of the tril­ogy of films based on the beloved book by J.R.R. Tolkien. While un­doubt­edly daz­zling to the eye, a de­cided lack of sto­ry­telling ur­gency – there was no need to stretch this sim­ple story across three long in­stal­ments – floods all other senses with pure te­dium. Martin Free­man plays Bilbo Bag­gins, the home­body hob­bit who re­luc­tantly joins the wise wizard Gan­dalf (Ian McKellen) and a tribe of war­rior dwarfs for a mam­moth trek into the un­known. The spe­cial ef­fects

★★

work is ut­terly spell­bind­ing, but there’s no hid­ing the un­nec­es­sary pad­ding that bloats the run­ning time to almost three hours.

SATUR­DAY

THE CHRON­I­CLES OF NAR­NIA: THE VOY­AGE OF THE DAWN TREADER 7.30PM, TEN Sorry, Chron­i­cles Of Nar­nia, but some­one has to say it. Harry Pot­ter on a bad day trumps you on a good day. Ev­ery time. This is not to say this be­lated third ad­di­tion to the se­ries, based on the clas­sic books by C.S. Lewis, is an un­qual­i­fied dud. But as an event film, well, it’s some­thing of a non-event. In this rather dull episode, the lesser of the Peven­sie kids, Lucy (Ge­orgie Hen­ley) and Ed­ward (Skan­der Keynes), re­turn to the magic king­dom of Nar­nia for a marathon ship voy­age to the edge of the world. Act­ing is av­er­age, as are the spe­cial ef­fects. Def­i­nitely one for Nar­nia trag­ics only.

★★

Out to sea: A boy (Su­raj Sharma) and a tiger sur­vive a ship­wreck in LifeofPi.

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