The Golden Compass
( PG): Rational science and the oppressive ruling Magisterium are in conflict in this visually inventive fantasy epic, based on Philip Pullman ’ s
first novel in the His Dark Materials trilogy. As the elegant villainess, Nicole Kidman has rarely looked more beautiful. The action ends abruptly, just as it gets interesting. — David Stratton Emporium
( G): Dustin Hoffman is the 243- year- old owner of an elaborate Manhattan toy shop where the toys come to life. An enjoyable confection, if not entirely original. — D . S.
Hunting and Gathering ( Ensemble, c’ est tout)
( M): Audrey Tautou is a cleaner who befriends a shy, stammering neighbour. Four lonely lives are transformed by love and unexpected friendship in this lovely story, handled with rare insight. — E. W. Enchanted
( G): Charming romantic fantasy from Disney, mixing animation with live action. A fairytale princess leaves her cartoon world to emerge in contemporary Manhattan, where she meets a rival to her Prince Charming. Susan Sarandon is the wicked stepmother. — Evan Williams 2 Days in Paris
( MA15+): Julie Delpy directs and stars in this comedy with attitude, about a hedonistic French girl who brings her uptight Jewish boyfriend home to meet the family. Amusing for its insights into French and American characters. — D . S. I Served the King of England
Menzel’ s ( M): Czech director Jiri ironic, melancholy comedy follows the fortunes and misfortunes of an ambitious young man ( Ivan Barnev) during the Nazi and communist periods. — D . S.
No Country for Old Men ( MA15+): Stunningly photographed in Texas, this tale of an everyman ( Josh Brolin) who unwisely steals $ 2 million of drug money, and the hit man who pursues him ( Javier Bardem), is much more than a finely tuned exercise in suspense. My pick as film of the year for 2007. — D . S. Atonement
( MA15+): Ian McEwan ’ s girl’ s
novel about a young remorse has been made into a film of surpassing beauty and power by director Joe Wright, with flawless performances
Pride & Prejudice ), from Keira Knightley ( Romola Garai and James McAvoy. The film of 2007 for me. — E. W I ’ m Not There
( M): Todd Haynes ’ s
audacious portrait of Bob Dylan uses six actors, including the remarkable Cate Blanchett, to portray the musician at different stages of his career. — D . S. P. S. I Love You
( PG): A grieving widow ( Hilary Swank) finds happiness in life through letters from her dead husband ( Gerard Butler). A captivating romantic fable with seductive Irish scenery. — E. W.
Mr Magorium ’ s Wonder
The Golden Compass