HOTSHOTS

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Film -

Bridge to Ter­abithia ( PG): A beau­ti­ful and greatly mov­ing adap­ta­tion of Kather­ine Pater­son’s story about the friend­ship of two trou­bled young­sters ( Josh Hutch­er­son and An­naSophia Robb) and their ad­ven­tures in an imag­i­nary king­dom. More than just an­other empty spe­cial- ef­fects ex­trav­a­ganza, Ga­bor Csupo’s film never al­lows its fan­tasy se­quences to dis­tract us from the joys and an­guish of the real world. — Evan Wil­liams

Ocean’s Thir­teen

( PG): Ge­orge Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Da­mon and the rest are back in Steven Soder­bergh’s ef­fort­lessly smooth ca­per movie. This time their tar­get is a lav­ish Las Ve­gas casino run by ego­ma­ni­a­cal Al Pa­cino — a highly sat­is­fac­tory vil­lain — and the for­mula, which is easy to take, is served up with the usual pro­fes­sional gloss. — David Stratton

Driv­ing Lessons Grint, of 17- year- old who falls un­der the spell of age­ing ac­tor Julie Wal­ters in this au­to­bi­o­graph­i­cal com­edy from Jeremy Brock. The film is un­even, though Wal­ters has some won­der­ful mo­ments. Laura Lin­ney is mis­cast as the mother and Grint is awk­ward at times. — D. S.

Harry Pot­ter

( M): Ru­pert fame, plays a shy

Shrek the Third

( PG): Our favourite green ogre is re­luc­tant to take the throne of Far Far Away and per­suades Princess Fiona’s shy cousin to groom him­self for the job. De­spite some progress with an­i­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy, the film is a dis­ap­point­ment, lack­ing the crisp, satir­i­cal bite of its pre­de­ces­sors, with ev­ery­thing blander, flat­ter, more pret­ti­fied. — E. W.

A Crude Awak­en­ing: The Oil

( G): A dooms­day doc­u­men­tary that con­firms what most of us al­ready know: our reliance on oil is not only lead­ing us to de­pend on some un­de­pend­able regimes but is also threat­en­ing the fu­ture of the planet. An­other in­con­ve­nient truth for those who are open to a cin­e­matic lec­ture. — D. S.

Ro­mu­lus, My Fa­ther

( M): Richard Roxburgh’s heart­felt, mov­ing film of Rai­mond Gaita’s mem­oir of his trou­bled child­hood in rural Vic­to­ria never quite cap­tures the re­flec­tive power of the book, de­spite a fine por­trayal of Gaita’s fa­ther by Eric Bana and Kodi Smit- McPhee’s firstrate per­for­mance as the boy Rai. — E. W.

The US vs John Len­non

( M): An ex­cel­lent doc­u­men­tary, made with help from Yoko Ono, about John Len­non’s po­lit­i­cal ac­tiv­i­ties in the US in the 1970s and at­tempts by the FBI and the Nixon ad­min­is­tra­tion to have him de­ported. A re­minder of what the 70s were like and the role Len­non played in the anti- Viet­nam War move­ment. — D. S.

Pi­rates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

( M): Not even Johnny Depp’s won­der­ful Jack Spar­row, Ge­of­frey Rush’s schem­ing Bar­bossa and the wiz­ardry of di­rec­tor Gore Verbin­ski’s spe­cial ef­fects team can sus­tain the third in­stal­ment of Dis­ney’s pi­rate saga. As spec­tac­u­lar and spooky as ever, but a numb­ing sense of overkill pre­vails. — E. W.

Fan­tas­tic: Bridge to Ter­abithia

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