The Weekend Australian - Review - - Film -

In Bruges ( MA15+): Famed play­wright Martin McDon­agh’s first fea­ture ( af­ter an Os­car- winning short) is a di­a­logue- filled thriller with Colin Far­rell ( in top form) and Bren­dan Glee­son as a cou­ple of hit men forced to chill out in the Bel­gian town of Bruges af­ter a Lon­don killing goes wrong. The talk, much of it pretty ob­scene, ends with Tarantino- like action, but the ac­tors, in­clud­ing Ralph Fi­ennes, carry the day. — David Stratton

Harold & Ku­mar Es­cape from Guan­tanamo Bay ( MA15+): This se­quel doesn’t quite match the ex­cel­lent 2004 com­edy Harold & Ku­mar Go to White Cas­tle. It re­cap­tures the premise of two stoned guys on a quest be­set by mis­ad­ven­ture and gives it a new twist. Harold ( John Cho) and Ku­mar ( Kal Penn) es­cape from Gitmo af­ter be­ing mis­taken for ter­ror­ists and head across the US in an at­tempt to clear their names. There’s some funny riff­ing on racial stereotypes and the more ab­surd el­e­ments of the war on ter­ror, but an over- re­liance on toi­let hu­mour and gen­i­tals. — Kerrie Mur­phy

Wel­come to the Sticks ( M): An un­prece­dented suc­cess at the French box of­fice, this ami­able, light­weight com­edy cen­tres on a post of­fice man­ager from Provence, well played by Kad Merad, who is as­signed a po­si­tion in chilly north­west France, where the di­alect is al­most in­com­pre­hen­si­ble. It’s a hard- to­trans­late, one- joke film, but ac­tor- di­rec­tor Dany Boon, who plays one of the lo­cals, has fun with the sim­ple premise. — D. S.

Son of Ram­bow ( PG): A nos­tal­gic film from Garth Jen­nings, set in south­ern Eng­land in 1982, about a cou­ple of boys from dif­fer­ent back­grounds so im­pressed with First Blood, the orig­i­nal Rambo film, that they set about pro­duc­ing a video re­make. A charm­ing idea is let down by awk­ward han­dling and a clumsy sub­plot in­volv­ing a French ex­change stu­dent. — D. S.

Not Quite Hol­ly­wood ( MA15+): Mark Hart­ley’s en­ter­tain­ing doc­u­men­tary about Aus­tralian ex­ploita­tion films of the 1970s and ’ 80s is a re­minder of an in­vig­o­rat­ing school of movie- mak­ing. Packed with ex­cerpts and in­ter­views, the film doesn’t tell the whole story but it cel­e­brates a lar­rikin ap­proach with in­fec­tious en­thu­si­asm. — D. S.

Son of a Lion ( PG): A won­der­fully con­fi­dent and touch­ing first fea­ture from Syd­ney- based writer- di­rec­tor Ben­jamin Gilmour, shot at some risk to him­self and his Pak­istani cast in the coun­try’s tribal re­gions. Should 10- yearold Niaz ( Niaz Khan Shinwari) go to school, as he longs to do, or be made to work in his fa­ther’s gun- mak­ing busi­ness? A sim­ple story, rich in in­sights into Mus­lim life and val­ues. — Evan Wil­liams

Bon­neville ( PG): This dis­ap­point­ing road movie fol­lows three women driv­ing to Cal­i­for­nia in a vin­tage con­vert­ible. There is a great cast — Jes­sica Lange as newly wid­owed Arvilla, with Joan Allen and Kathy Bates as her friends and Chris­tine Baran­ski as her brit­tle step­daugh­ter — but few sur­prises amid the clunky di­a­logue. — K. M.

Hits the tar­get: Colin Far­rell in In Bruges

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