WEEK IN MOVIES
WITH LEIGH PAATSCH
THE RUM DIARY 11PM, TEN As a staunch friend of the late Hunter S. Thompson, Johnny Depp continues his crusade to keep the influential work of the celebrated American writer on the pedestal it deserves. In this respectfully disrespectful adaptation of a lesser-known salvo from the Thompson canon, Depp plays Paul Kemp, a young newspaperman on a roundabout path to fame and fortune in the early 1960s. A heavy drinker and a deep thinker, Kemp (essentially an idealised version of the younger Thompson) finds plenty of reasons to do both when he lands on the US-run island of Puerto Rico.
21 JUMP STREET 9.30PM, GO! Don’t be fooled by the tacky exterior. Dumb comedies with real smarts as sharp as this do not come around so often. Fans of the iconic ’80s TV show should be warned this hilarious affair is not a remake, reboot or rehash in any shape or form. The filmmakers have lifted the brand and the ridiculous premise – mature-age cops going undercover as teenage students at a crime-riddled high school – and left the rest out. Channing Tatum ( The Vow) and Jonah Hill ( Superbad) play two pathetic policemen with a lot to learn once they return to the classroom.
at all. In its most compelling stretches – which are all too few and far between – this sombre psychological thriller shapes as a mid-strength Memento. However, when urgency levels drop, the film leaves you with no choice but to daydream about what might have been. Nicole Kidman stars as a British housewife whose memory self-erases each evening. Every morning she must then decide who she should trust for the oncoming day: her husband (Colin Firth) or therapist (Mark Strong). The who’s-duping-who conundrum supplies plenty of twists and turns, but few of them achieve any real impact.
SWORDFISH 9.30PM, GO! Lots of explosions, shattered glass and gritted teeth in this big-budget, low-concept action thriller. Aussie Hugh Jackman is a master computer hacker held to ransom and forced to thump a keyboard by shadowy money launderer John Travolta. Not much here you haven’t seen before.
THE LUNCHBOX 3.30PM, FOXTEL MASTERPIECE
In Mumbai, a glitch in the city’s “dabbawala” food delivery service opens a line of correspondence between two lonely people. Ila (Nimrat Kaur) is sending heartfelt lunchtime dishes to reignite the interest of an inattentive husband. The actual recipient is Sajaan (Irrfan Khan), a gruff accountant bewitched by the delicacies. Will they ever dine as one?
JACK REACHER 8.55PM, TEN A miscast Tom Cruise has the title role of a vigilante force who wanders from city to city, putting holes in those who have put holes in others. Jack believes the perp the cops have arrested for a mass shooting is innocent. He beats up some hoods in a bar, stacks a car in a high-speed chase and befriends a rascally patriot (Robert Duvall). While the character of Jack Reacher has featured in nearly 20 books by author Lee Child, this will not mark the start of a screen franchise.
Dazzling: Smith (Hugo Weaving) and Neo (Keanu Reeves) tangle again in TheMatrix Reloaded.
Back to school: Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum go undercover at a high school in 21JumpStreet.