If the trailer is any measure, then JJ Abrams’s second Enterprise adventure (left) should be titled
Awesome. DEADFALL Promising thriller from the Oscar-winning director of The Counterfeiters. Eric Bana and Olivia Wilde are on the lam amid snowy Nordic wastes.
Star Trek: Into MUD Excellent southern fable from Jeff Nichols, director in Take Shelter, concerning a vaga- OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL Directed by Sam Raimi. Starring James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz, Michelle Williams We didn’t think we wanted a prequel to The Wizard of Oz. But, because of the wonderful things he does, Raimi convinces us otherwise. The script doesn’t always take flight: Franco plays a sleazy magician mistaken for the saviour of Oz. But the film offers a delicious visual tribute to escapist cinema of the 1930s. The colours are bold, the effects deliberately artificial. Raimi also manages some decent comedy horror. A happy surprise. PG cert, gen release, 130 min PILGRIM HILL Directed by Gerard Barrett. Starring Joe Mullins Shot in unhurried, cautious fashion – and making occasional gestures to the mock documentary genre – Pilgrim Hill offers a quietly devastating portrait of a bachelor farmer (Mullins) eking out his life in a lonely farm on a windy outcrop. Barrett’s debut feature is a quietly stunning slice of rural naturalism. Ian D Murphy’s cinematography is limpid. Barrett choreographs the slow march towards an expected catastrophe with rhythms that are positively Russian in their grace. 12A cert, gen release, 78 min THE PLACE BEYOND THE PINES Directed by Derek Cianfrance. Starring Ryan Gosling, Eva Mendes, Bradley Cooper, Ray Liotta Don’t be fooled by the iconic spectacle of peroxide Gosling on a motorbike: the second collaboration between director Cianfrance and the actor is no angsty actioner but a triptych. Gosling’s lost boy carny exits after the first chapter, leaving Cooper’s cop to hold the fort. Two brighter, younger things , in turn, supersede Cooper as the central focus. Picture the time-lapse drama of Blue Valentine on a grander, intergenerational scale. 15A cert, gen release, 140 min PROMISED LAND Directed by Gus Van Sant. Starring Matt Damon, John Krasinski, Frances McDor- bond’s relationship with two young tearaways. Matthew McConaughey continues his resurgence. THE EYE OF THE STORM Fred Schepisi, veteran director of The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith, tackles a classic Australian novel by the unfairly overlooked Patrick White.
OPENING MAY 16th THE GREAT GATSBY Baz Luhrmann’s postponed take on the Great American Novel does not look to be restrained. Leonardo DiCaprio plays the eponymous faker. mand, Hal Holbrook Gus, still in mainstream mode, follows up the fine Milk and the execrable Restless with a worthy, implausible but surprisingly charming film on the hot topic of natural gas fracking. Damon and McDormand play two nicely drawn antiheroes: outriders for a sinister energy firm who want to do the wrong thing for the right reasons. Unfortunately, the film slips into Capraesque implausibility, though it remains enjoyable throughout. Hard to swallow, easy to digest. 15A cert, Cork Omniplex/Reel Picture, Cork; IMC Santry, Dublin, 106 min SAMMY’S GREAT ESCAPE Directed by Ben Stassen, Vincent Kesteloot Thanks a lot, Belgium. We were all aware that, despite the general high standard of today’s family animations, crummy throwntogether cartoons are still routinely dumped before blameless children. This Euro animation is sloppy and cheap. G cert, gen release, 92 min SCARY MOVIE 5 15A cert, gen release, 86 min No review; not previewed for critics SIDE EFFECTS Directed by Steven Soderbergh. Starring Jude Law, Rooney Mara, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Channing Tatum A psychiatrist (Law), dealing with a depressed woman (Mara), find his life collapsing about his ears. If this puzzling, enjoyable medical thriller were directed by almost any film-maker other than Soderbergh, you would be tempted to diagnose it with genre identity disorder. It begins as an indictment of Big Pharma. It ends as an absurdly overheated melodrama. The swivel is almost certainly deliberate, but it’s still very jarring. 15A cert, Movies@Dundrum/Movies@ Swords/Odeon Stillorgan, Dublin, 105 min SPRING BREAKERS Directed by Harmony Korine. Starring James Franco, Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens Korine, the bad-boy director of Gummo, skirts the mainstream with this violent, delightfully equivocal examination of the US spring break phenomenon. Four broke student are so desperate to party in Florida they rob a restaurant. Later they fall in with a ludicrous gangsta, brilliantly played by a sleazy Franco. The garishly shot, endlessly loud film is half in love with its subject and half appalled by it. The dialectic offers naughty pleasures galore. 18 cert, Triskel, Cork, 93 min NEW RELEASE 21 AND OVER 16 cert, gen release, 93 min See review, page 13
WEST OF MEMPHIS Directed by Amy Berg In 1993 the bodies of three children were discovered in a drainage canal in the less than salubrious borough of West Memphis, Arkansas and suspicion fell on three local teenagers. With echoes of The Thin Blue Line, West of Memphis transforms a tragedy into a compelling, three-act thriller. The film is utterly transfixing. Club, Light House, Dublin, 147 min TB WHITE ELEPHANT/ELEFANTE BLANCO Directed by Pablo Trapero. Starring Ricardo Darín, Jérémie Renier, Martina Gusman Two priests set to work in a troubled corner of Buenos Aires. Following on from his excellent Carancho, Trapero offers another diverting meditation on corruption and social desperation in his native Argentina. As we have come to expect from this director, the film deftly combines narrative pace with an acute grasp of the political undercurrents. It is the very best sort of campaigning drama: the kind that sneaks up upon you. 15A cert, IFI/Screen, Dublin; Eye Galway, 104 min WRECK-IT RALPH Directed by Rich Moore. Voices of John C Reilly, Sarah Silverman It doesn’t quite live up to the potential of its premise. The graphics are delicious. The contrast between different gaming styles are nicely highlighted. But as the film progresses, the in-jokes decrease and the dialogue loses much of its bite. G cert, gen release, 107 min
OPENING NEXT WEEK