WEEK IN MOVIES

WITH LEIGH PAATSCH

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - TV Guide - - WEEK IN MOVIES -

SUN­DAY

THE BOURNE IDEN­TITY 8.45PM, 7MATE Con­tin­u­ing the long line of movie char­ac­ters who can’t re­mem­ber who the hell they are, here comes Matt Da­mon as au­thor Robert Lud­lum’s am­ne­siac spy, Ja­son Bourne. As cashed-up and dumbed-down a Mission: Im­plau­si­ble as it ul­ti­mately be­comes, a few good bends are snapped on a rel­a­tively straight­for­ward slab of es­pi­onage.

★★

MON­DAY

THE EX­PEND­ABLES 9.30PM, GO Un­der the un­cre­ative con­trol of Sylvester Stal­lone as direc­tor, writer and lead­ing man, this Ne­an­derthal ac­tion flick bulls-eyes so-ba­dit’s-sad from the start. The fea­tured cast (com­pris­ing Ja­son Statham, Jet Li, some wrestlers, ul­ti­mate fighters and as­sorted D-lis­ters such as Eric Roberts) rarely give the im­pres­sion they’re all that in­ter­ested in what is go­ing on. How­ever, this is very much Stal­lone’s movie, which he ru­ins with his ter­ri­ble non-act­ing and that eerie, wax­work ap­pear­ance he is sport­ing. As for The Ex­pend­ables’ plot of a group of mer­ce­nar­ies on a sui­cide mission to South Amer­ica? Well, it is a mo­ronic throw­back to the gory, glory days of Stal­lone’s own Rambo se­ries. Ex­punge­able.

TUES­DAY

AMER­I­CAN PIE 2 9.30PM, 7MATE Let’s face it. No one in their right mind watches a movie se­quel th­ese days ex­pect­ing the wheel to be re-in­vented. How­ever, not even the most rav­en­ous fans of Amer­i­can Pie will be able to stom­ach what is go­ing on in the fol­low-up. Amer­i­canPie2 is a grubby, schlubby grab for box-of­fice cash that re­vis­its each and ev­ery joke from the first film to cover up for the un­avoid­able fact the new ma­te­rial (again writ­ten by

Adam Herz) is hope­lessly be­low par. Sure, the first Pie was no clas­sic. But what it did have in its favour was a fresh, in­fec­tiously up-for-it cast and a brazen de­ter­mi­na­tion to break taboos with hu­mour. This time around, the ac­tors dis­play all the en­thu­si­asm of peo­ple who didn’t spot the oblig­a­tory you-must-showup-for-the-se­quel clause in their orig­i­nal con­tracts.

WED­NES­DAY

THE MA­TRIX 8.30PM, GO A com­puter hacker learns about the true na­ture of re­al­ity from a group of mys­te­ri­ous rebels. All those TV com­mer­cials and a re­duced screen size can’t ob­scure the blunt re­al­ity that this giddy mix of mar­tial arts, new-age meta­physics and shape-shift­ing su­per­heroes is an in­flu­en­tial movie.

★★★★

THURS­DAY

MAN ON A LEDGE 9.30PM, GO Like Snakes­on­aPlane and HotTubTimeMa­chine, the ti­tle tells you all you need

★★

to know about this generic thriller. The man is played by Sam Wor­thing­ton. The ledge is played by a grotty con­crete slab on the 30th floor of a New York ho­tel. One gives a slightly more con­vinc­ing per­for­mance than the other (hint: it’s not the one who was in Avatar). Wor­thing­ton is a bloke who was framed. Now he’s threat­en­ing to jump un­less a wor­ried(ish) NYPD agrees to his de­mands. Of course, he’s not gonna be kiss­ing no foot­path. Where’s the film in that? How­ever, the sur­prise twist to this high-rise drama doesn’t re­ally glue the viewer to the screen. Over­all, dumb as a brick. Al­most en­dear­ingly so. But not quite.

FRI­DAY

GLAD­I­A­TOR 8.30PM, 7MATE Direc­tor Ri­d­ley Scott and Rus­sell Crowe’s Max­imus com­bine spec­tac­u­larly in this his­toric Ro­man epic. The block­buster has well and truly stood the test of time. Swords and san­dals have never looked so

★★★★

good. One of Crowe’s most cap­ti­vat­ing per­for­mances. Glad­i­a­tor is as bru­tal as it is bril­liant.

SATUR­DAY

THE BEST EX­OTIC MARIGOLD HO­TEL 7.30PM, TEN In this pleas­ant, pen­sion­er­pow­ered Bri­tish en­sem­ble com­edy, a posse of past-it Poms are suck­ered into living at a ritzy re­tire­ment home in Jaipur, In­dia, which turns out to be not in the least bit ritzy at all. Best en­joyed as a rare chance to see an ex­ten­sive ar­ray of Eng­land’s finest weath­er­beaten thesps act­ing up a storm at close quar­ters. There’s the Wid­owed One (Judi Dench), the Mis­er­ably Mar­ried Ones (Bill Nighy and Pene­lope Wil­ton), a Gen­tle­manly Gay One (Tom Wilkin­son), a cou­ple of Randy Ones (Celia Im­rie and Ron­ald Pickup) and a Fussy Racist One (Maggie Smith, Down­tonAbbey’s queen of the dis­ap­prov­ing stare). Stereo­types all, but not one out­stays their wel­come.

★★★

Eng­land’s finest: Judi Dench heads an im­pres­sive en­sem­ble cast in TheBestEx­oticMarigoldHo­tel.

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