Tara Brady and Don­ald Clarke re­view the cur­rent cin­ema re­leases

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - SEVEN DAYS | FILM -


Di­rected by Jen­nifer Kent. Star­ring Essie Davis, Noah

Wise­man Ter­rific Freudian hor­ror film con­cern­ing a mother deal­ing with a trou­bled soon who imag­ines (or does he?) that the mon­ster in a pic­ture book is hid­ing in the base­ment. Jen­nifer Kent’s Aus­tralian film wades its way through pae­do­pho­bic ter­ri­tory sim­i­lar to that cov­ered by David Lynch’s Eraser­head and Jaume Col­let-Serra’s un­der­val­ued

Or­phan. The su­per­nat­u­ral un­der­cur­rents are spooky, but the in­ti­ma­tions of real-life trau­mas are still more disturbing. Eas­ily the best hor­ror of 2014 so far. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 94 min DC



See re­view, p9


Di­rected by Jorge R. Gu­tier­rez Voices of Chan­ning Ta­tum, Zoë Sal­dana, Ron Perl­man, Diego Luna, Kate del Castillo A po­et­i­cally minded mu­si­cian (voiced by Luna) and a gruff sol­dier (Ta­tum) try to win over a well-ed­u­cated señorita (Sal­dana) in a Mex­i­can-themed an­i­ma­tion that bears the fin­ger­prints of its pro­ducer Guillermo del Toro. The

Book of Life looks ab­so­lutely gor­geous. Com­bin­ing Day-of-the -Dead aes­thet­ics with a slight Pi­casso feel, the an­i­ma­tion buzzes with colour and en­ergy. Un­for­tu­nately the story does me­an­der. Eas­ier to ad­mire than love. cert, gen re­lease, 95 min DC



See re­view, p10

THE DROP ★★★★ Di­rected by Michaël R Roskam. Star­ring Tom Hardy, Noomi Ra­pace, James Gan­dolfini, Matthias Schoe­naerts, John

Or­tiz, Ann Dowd Ef­fec­tive adap­ta­tion of a Den­nis Le­hane story con­cern­ing the re­la­tion­ship be­tween a com­pro­mised tav­ern keeper (Gan­dolfini) and his frus­trated, con­flicted cousin (Hardy). As­ton­ish­ingly, the in­ter­changes be­tween Gan­dolfini and Hardy com­pare favourably with those be­tween Steiger and Brando in On the Water­front. Those cracking per­for­mances el­e­vate Roskam’s pic­ture from the pack. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 106 min DC


Di­rected by David Ayer. Star­ring Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, Lo­gan Ler­man, Michael Peña The reptilian brain con­trols ba­sic life func­tions, such as breath­ing and the in­ner voice that in­sists it isn’t re­ally a proper movie un­less it has a tank in it. Luck­ily, the new film from David Ayer, a proper di­rec­tor, casts not just any old tank, but a M4A3E8 Sher­man in the tit­u­lar role. Side­kick Brad Pitt’s hard­bit­ten sergeant climbs in to com­mand an eth­ni­cally di­verse ar­moured di­vi­sion of badasses, in­clud­ing the Re­li­gious One (LeBeouf), the Psy­cho One (Bern­thal), the Dam­aged One (Peña) and the New Guy (Ler­man). Watch out, Nazi scum. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 134 min TB


Di­rected by Tate Tay­lor. Star­ring Chad­wick Bose­man, Nel­san El­lis, Dan Aykroyd, Vi­ola Davis, Keith Robin­son, Oc­tavia Spencer. 12A cert, gen re­lease,

139 min We have seen more than enough mu­si­cal biopics in re­cent years. Yet, mag­i­cally, un­ex­pect­edly, most funkily, this study of James Brown feels fresh and crisp as the God­fa­ther’s keen­est moves. Tay­lor di­rects with mod­est flair, but most of the credit must be shared be­tween star Chad­wick Bose­man, who almost makes some­thing lik­able of a very awk­ward man, and writer Jez But­ter­worth, who proves that this wheel is still ca­pa­ble of rein­ven­tion. Un­der­val­ued. TB



See re­view, p10


Di­rected by David Fincher. Star­ring Ben Af­fleck, Rosamund

Pike Fincher’s adap­ta­tion of the best­seller proves a per­fect match for the di­rec­tor’s ob­ses­sively com­pul­sive in­tel­lec­tual vacu­ity. Be­gin­ning steadily and stealth­ily with in­ves­ti­ga­tions into the dis­ap­pear­ance of a mid­west­ern ice queen (ter­rific Pike), Gone Girl swivels to­wards ab­sur­dity in its sec­ond half as it in­dulges in some eye-wa­ter­ing misogyny. But the quips at con­tem­po­rary me­dia are acute and the Hitch­cock­ian shocks are well mea­sured. Du­bi­ous, but close to ir­re­sistible. 16 cert, gen re­lease, 149 mins DC



See re­view, p10


Di­rected by Ran­dall Wright.

Fea­tur­ing David Hock­ney This like­able, solid doc­u­men­tary span­ning David Hock­ney’s glit­ter­ing 50-year ca­reer is, we are told, the de­fin­i­tive Hock­ney chron­i­cle. We’re not so sure about that. The fin­ished fea­ture works well as a primer, but it’s noth­ing we haven’t seen be­fore in the many TV doc­u­men­taries made about the same artist over the years. It’s not nearly as in­ter­est­ing as Jack Hazan’s faux fly-on-thewall film A Big­ger Splash. Club, Light House, Dublin, 113 min TB


Di­rected by Tommy Lee Jones Star­ring Tommy Lee Jones, Hi­lary Swank, John Lith­gow, Tim Blake Nel­son, James Spader, Hailee Ste­in­feld,

Mi­randa Otto Strange, com­pelling proto-western star­ring Jones as a rough-hewn drifter who must help Swank’s pi­o­neer (ac­tu­ally the “homes­man” of the ti­tle) trans­port three mad women back east across the Mis­souri. Like most re­cent westerns, the film strikes takes an ele­giac tone as it in­ves­ti­gates the place of women in this un­for­giv­ing so­ci­ety. The film has fem­i­nist lean­ings, but a late turn places it an un­usual place po­lit­i­cally. Fas­ci­nat­ing for all that. DC


Di­rected by Sean An­ders. Star­ring Ja­son Bate­man, Charlie Day, Ja­son Sudeikis, Jen­nifer Anis­ton, Jamie Foxx, Chris Pine, Christoph Waltz Dread­ful se­quel to a com­edy that wasn’t so great in the first place. Wilde is apoc­ryphally ac­cred­ited with the phrase “sar­casm was the low­est form of wit”. But that’s only be­cause Wilde never saw this film’s grim over­ture: Oh look, their pitch on TV ac­ci­den­tally re­sem­bles oral sex! You could get away with the ju­ve­nilia if the script were bet­ter, but it’s almost as if some­one scooped up the scraps from Con­fes­sions of a Win­dow Cleaner. 15A cert, gen re­lease,

108 min TB


Di­rected by Fran­cis Lawrence. Star­ring Jen­nifer Lawrence, Josh Hutch­er­son, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Har­rel­son, El­iz­a­beth Banks, Ju­lianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoff­man, Jef­frey Wright. 12A cert, gen

re­lease, 122 min We re­join the ac­tion with Kat­niss (Lawrence) trans­ported to the rebel head­quar­ters in mys­te­ri­ous Dis­trict 13. Pres­i­dent Coin (a sil­very Moore) has de­cided that our hero­ine, fa­mous for an act of tele­vised re­bel­lion, is to be­come the liv­ing fig­ure­head – or Mock­ing­jay – of the re­volt. As ever the fran­chise re­mains a cut above its ri­vals: well-acted, beau­ti­fully shot. But this open­ing adap­tion of the bi­fur­cated last book feels like a throat-clear­ing ex­er­cise. DC


Di­rected by Clare Lewins. Fea­tur­ing Mo­ham­mad Ali, Hana Ali, An­gelo Dundee, Tom Jones, Mike Tyson, George Fore­man Here is con­clu­sive proof that it is im­pos­si­ble to make a bor­ing doc­u­men­tary about Mo­ham­mad Ali. Mind you, the folk be­hind this lack­lus­tre ha­giog­ra­phy have cer­tainly tried their hard­est. The film’s only fresh ma­te­rial – record­ings of the boxer with his kids – re­ally were not worth drag­ging out. Still, there is no re­sist­ing the man’s durable charisma. Not a good film. But still easy to en­joy. PG cert, limited re­lease, 111 min DC


Di­rected by Morten Tyl­dum. Star­ring Bene­dict Cum­ber­batch, Keira Knight­ley, Matthew Goode, Mark Strong, Charles Dance, Allen Leech, Matthew

Beard Fast-paced, lu­cid drama fol­low­ing Alan Tur­ing’s ef­forts to break the Ger­man’s Enigma ci­pher dur­ing the sec­ond World War and his sub­se­quent shame­ful per­se­cu­tion for ho­mo­sex­u­al­ity. The film does in­dulge in a tad too much spo­ken ex­po­si­tion, but Cum­ber­batch is ter­rific as Tur­ing. The film makes in­ter­est­ing points about how a man who couldn’t quite get to grips with every­day so­ci­ety might well de­velop a spe­cial tal­ent for break­ing codes. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 124 min DC


Di­rected by Christo­pher Nolan. Star­ring Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hath­away, Jessica Chas­tain, Michael Caine, Bill Ir­win, Ellen Burstyn, John

Lith­gow, Casey Af­fleck Farmer Matt, once a Nasa em­ployee, sets out for new plan­ets as the earth suc­cumbs to eco­log­i­cal dis­as­ter. Nolan’s lum­ber­ing sci-fi epic is beau­ti­ful, daz­zling and as­ton­ish­ingly loud, but, alas, it is a mess at the level of the script. The sci­ence is screwy. The meta­physics – now Dar­winian, now new age – are all over the place. The di­a­logue is weighed down with te­dious ex­po­si­tion. A pulp ad­ven­ture with ideas way above its lowly sta­tion. 12A, gen re­lease, 168 min DC


Di­rected by David Dobkin. Star­ring Robert Downey Jr, Robert Du­vall, Vera Farmiga, Vincent D’Onofrio, Billy Bob

Thorn­ton Ob­jec­tion! Mere­tri­cious sen­ti­men­tal­ity! Ob­jec­tion! Bad­ger­ing the au­di­ence! Where is this lead­ing, your hon­our? In Dobkin’s at­tempt to gain some re­spectabil­ity (he pre­vi­ously di­rected The Wed­ding Crash­ers and Fred Claus), a soul­less lawyer (Downey) de­fends his grumpy dad (Du­vall), a judge, on a mur­der charge. It’s the sort of fat, wor­thy fam­ily drama that man­ages the feat of be­ing too sen­ti­men­tal even for Os­car vot­ers. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 141 min DC


Di­rected by Paul Katis. Star­ring Mark Stan­ley, Malachi Kirby, David El­liot, Paul Lue­bke, Ali

Cook Katis’s ex­cel­lent fea­ture de­but deals with an in­ci­dent around the Ka­jaki Dam in Afghanistan that found a Bri­tish pla­toon wan­der­ing into a mine­field left over from the Soviet con­flict. The strong, earthy per­for­mances by an ex­pe­ri­enced, if un­starry, cast bring pro­fane in­tegrity to a brave project. Fea­tur­ing no mu­sic and lit­tle plot, the pic­ture works as a grit­tier, more truth­ful (but equally a po­lit­i­cal) vari­a­tion on Zulu. 16 cert, Vue, Dublin, 108 min DC


Di­rected by An­drey Zvyag­int­sev Star­ring Alek­sei Sere­bryakov “The soul of the Rus­sian peo­ple is reawak­en­ing,” prom­ises one of

Le­viathan’s co­terie of creepy priests. Yes. But to what end? An­drey Zvyag­int­sev, one of the most re­li­ably daz­zling tal­ents in world cin­ema, last reached Ir­ish cin­e­mas with Elena, which forged a de­li­cious do­mes­tic thriller from Moscow’s bur­geon­ing class sys­tem. Le­viathan harks back to the di­rec­tor’s trick­ier, ear­lier pic­ture, The Ban­ish­ment: we know we’re watch­ing a po­lit­i­cal al­le­gory and a re­work­ing of the Book of Job, but the real world par­al­lels form in­ter­est­ing sneaky squig­gles, not straight, satir­i­cal lines. Club, IFI, 140 min TB


Di­rected by Steve James. Fea­tur­ing Roger Ebert, Gene Siskel, Martin Scors­ese, Werner

Her­zog It might be stretch­ing it a lit­tle to sum­mon up al­lu­sions to Oliver Cromwell’s fa­mous warts (and all). This cin­e­matic take on Roger Ebert’s au­to­bi­og­ra­phy – fea­tur­ing footage of his fi­nal bat­tle with can­cer – stands as a warm trib­ute to Amer­ica’s most prom­i­nent main­stream movie critic. But di­rec­tor Steve James does al­low dis­cus­sion of Ebert’s flaws: early booz­ing, only-child ar­ro­gance, fierce com­pet­i­tive­ness. It proves, how­ever, im­pos­si­ble not to warm to the great man. Club, QFT, Belfast; Light House, Dublin, 120 min DC


Di­rected by Nawapol Tham­ron­grat­ta­narit. Star­ring Patcha Poon­piriya, Chon­nikan Netjui, Va­suphon Kri­ang­pra­pakit, Udom­porn Hon­lad­da­porn. Club, IFI Dublin,

127 min The big con­cept: work­ing from the ran­dom tweets of an anony­mous teenage girl – @mary­lony – the dar­ing young Thai au­teur Nawapol Tham­ron­grat­ta­narit has crafted his own fic­tion­alised ver­sion of ac­count-user Mary Malony. The na­ture of mi­cro-blog­ging makes for ran­dom and oc­ca­sion­ally ab­surd wit­ter­ings: “I want a jel­ly­fish” or “I want birth­day cake even though it’s not my birth­day.” But that hasn’t pre­vented the writer-di­rec­tor from cre­at­ing a work that is as pro­found as it is surreal. TB


Di­rected by Wes Ball. Star­ring Dy­lan O’Brien, Aml

Ameen The lat­est bid to trans­form some ran­dom work of dystopian teen fic­tion into a boffo business op­por­tu­nity sees Teen

Wolf’s O’Brien wake up, sans mem­ory, in a glade pop­u­lated en­tirely by buff teenage boys: pic­ture a PG-rated ba­nana boat cruise. Some good ac­tors work hard to breathe life into a non­sen­si­cal plot. It’s to no avail. 12A cert, gen re­lease, 113 min TB



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Di­rected by Mike Leigh. Star­ring Ti­mothy Spall, Dorothy Atkin­son, Mar­ion Bai­ley, Paul Jes­son, Roger Ash­ton-Grif­fiths Spall plays a grunt­ing, snuf­fling ver­sion of vi­sion­ary painter JM W Turner in one of Leigh’s very finest

films. Freed from the con­tem­po­rary sub­urbs, the di­rec­tor al­lows Dick Pope’s cin­e­matog­ra­phy to ref­er­ence the images in Turner’s paint­ings with­out ever slip­ping into cheap im­per­son­ation. In pass­ing, the film of­fers a sly com­ment on the shift from gritty Ge­or­gian sen­si­bil­i­ties to the more hoity-toity stan­dards of the early Vic­to­rian era. A won­der. 12A cert, lim re­lease, 149 min DC


Di­rected by Deb­bie Isitt. Star­ring Marc Woot­ton, Martin Clunes, Cather­ine Tate, Ja­son Watkins, Celia Im­rie, Adam Gar­cia, Ralf

Lit­tle They’re back. How do we go about award­ing the square root of neg­a­tive one as a star rat­ing? How else can one pos­si­bly con­vey the aw­ful­ness of this three-quel? The

Na­tiv­ity se­quence has, to date, been a ram­shackle ex­pe­ri­ence, as var­i­ous re­spectable Bri­tish ac­tors have signed away their dig­nity to fea­ture at the cen­tre of a fran­chise that trades on Kids Say the Fun­ni­est Things im­prov and crummy sea­sonal tunes. This is the worst yet. G cert, gen re­lease,

109 min TB


Di­rected by Dan Gil­roy. Star­ring Jake Gyl­len­haal, Rene Russo, Riz Ahmed, Bill Pax­ton A psy­chopath shoots grue­some footage for the evening news. As an LA myth from the school of Michael Mann, Nightcrawler works quite bril­liantly. Filmed both dig­i­tally and on film, the pic­ture takes place in a glassy light that em­u­lates the pro­tag­o­nist’s psy­cho­log­i­cal with­drawal. Gyl­len­haal is ter­ri­fy­ingly va­cant in the lead role and Russo is con­vinc­ingly con­flicted as his boss. How­ever, putting a lu­natic at the cen­tre does de­fang the satire a tad. 16 cert, gen re­lease, 117 min DC

NO GOOD DEED ★★★ Di­rected by Sam Miller. Star­ring Idris Elba, Taraji P Hen­son, Leslie Bibb, Henry Sim­mons. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 83 min

Home in­va­sions and se­rial killers in a eco­nom­i­cal, out­landish pot­boiler. No one could de­scribe No Good Deed as orig­i­nal. But the film’s look-out-be­hind-you an­tics - not to men­tion daft plot twist and cheesy top­pings - stay classy(ish) thanks to its posse of re­li­able thesps and the anti-cast­ing of Idris Elba as a proper vil­lain. A proper vil­lain named Colin. Hen­son is also strong as the plucky vic­tim. Lu­di­crous, but watch­able. TB


Di­rected by Stiles White. Star­ring Olivia Cooke, Ana Coto, Daren Ka­ga­soff, Bianca A.

San­tos Stop me if you’ve heard this one be­fore. A pro­logue sees pretty girl Deb­bie (for­mer Miss Teen USA Shel­ley Hen­nig) re­ject a night out with her BF in or­der to mess around with a Ouija board. When she hears un­ex­plained noises, she walks around her large empty house – turn­ing off lights as she goes, of course – un­til she be­comes pos­sessed and dies. The pretty BF Laine (Cooke) and her pretty love in­ter­est start in­ves­ti­gat­ing. They find the board. They use the board. The board fails to pre­dict the ter­ri­ble reviews this movie will re­ceive. Cert 15A, gen­eral re­lease, 89mins. TB


Di­rected by Paul King. Star­ring Hugh Bon­neville, Sally Hawkins, Julie Wal­ters, Jim Broad­bent, Peter Ca­paldi, Ni­cole Kid­man, Ben Whishaw, Sa­muel Joslin,

Madeleine Har­ris For­get that aw­ful trailer. This adap­ta­tion of Michael Bond’s fa­mous sto­ries about a friendly bear is an ab­so­lute de­light. The plot is com­mend­ably sim­ple: Padding­ton is pur­sued by a wicked Cruella de Vil style taxi­der­mist (Kid­man), who, ini­tially, is in ca­hoots with nosy neigh­bour, Mr Curry (Ca­pa­lidi). Fans of Harry Pot­ter’s brand English­ness will find plenty to savour. But the film equally seeks to cel­e­brate in­clu­siv­ity. Smaller peo­ple, in par­tic­u­lar, will love the may­hem. G cert, gen re­lease, 95min TB


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Di­rected by James Hall, Ed­ward Lovelace. Fea­tur­ing Ed­wyn

Collins, Grace Maxwell Very touch­ing, imag­i­na­tively filmed doc­u­men­tary fol­low­ing Ed­wyn Collins, in­flu­en­tial Scot­tish mu­si­cian, as he makes a steady, in­com­plete re­cov­ery from a de­bil­i­tat­ing stroke. Shot in ex­pan­sive widescreen, the pic­ture be­gins with happy shots of a healthy Ed­wyn on the Co­nan O’Brien show and then plunges us into muggy, con­fused land­scapes ac­compa- nied by dis­con­nected mono­logues from the sub­ject. It’s of­ten very disturbing, but the re­la­tion­ship be­tween Collins and his wife, Grace Maxwell, is beau­ti­fully drawn. 12A cert, limited re­lease, 83 min DC


Di­rected by Lynn Shel­ton Star­ring Keira Knight­ley, Chloë Grace Moretz, Sam Rock­well Lynn Shel­ton, the im­pres­sive au­teur be­hind Hump­day and Your

Sis­ter’s Sis­ter, grad­u­ates from the mum­blecore cir­cuit with this love­able com­edy in which a loser in love meets an all-round, multi-pur­pose loser. Twen­tysome­thing grad­u­ate Megan (Knight­ley) hides from her fi­ancé with a gang of skate­board­ing teens, led by cool kid, An­nika (Moretz). And so it comes to pass that Megan em­barks on a week-long sleep­over at An­nika’s place, so that she can get her thoughts to­gether. But what will An­nika’s uptight, pen-click­ing dad (Rock­well) have to say about his daugh­ter’s older chum? Cert 15A, gen re­lease, 99mins TB




Di­rected by Yann De­mange. Star­ring Jack O’Con­nell, Seán Har­ris, Sam Reid, Martin

McCann A Bri­tish sol­dier seeks to es­cape West Belfast dur­ing the dark­est days of the Trou­bles. ’71 is ex­hil­a­rat­ing. O’Con­nell of­fers a per­fect por­trait of a man who, though pass­ing among work­ing-class streets very like his own, feels him­self stranded on a hos­tile planet. First-rate pur­suit thriller. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 99 min DC


Di­rected by Craig John­son. Star­ring Kris­ten Wiig, Bill Hader, Luke Wilson, Ty Bur­rell

Hader plays Milo, a strug­gling, gay ac­tor, who, fol­low­ing a failed sui­cide at­tempt, is forced to rec­on­cile with his es­tranged sis­ter Mag­gie (Wiig). A decade after they last talked, Mag­gie brings Milo to the house she shares in New York State with her cheery, un­com­pli­cated hus­band Lance (Wilson). The se­ri­ous com­edy is very much in the school of Gen­er­a­tion X high angst. But it’s beau­ti­fully played by all and fea­tures stir­ring set-pieces. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 92 min DC


Di­rected by Ro­nan and Rob Burke. Star­ring Jessica Paré, Brian Glee­son, Stan­ley Townsend, Francesca

Cher­ru­ault Un­de­mand­ing Ir­ish rom-com fol­low­ing a dis­ap­pointed young man and a glam­orous ex-girl­friend as they make their way about an at­trac­tive ver­sion of con­tem­po­rary Dublin. Sev­eral tropes, no­tably the scene in which wily old poker-play­ing gents wind up at a drag club, have no place in any arte­fact forged after the Stone Age. Still, Glee­son and Paré are pretty and charm­ing. And Francesca Cher­ru­ault puts in a ter­rific turn as Alan’s wacky friend. 15A cert, limited re­lease, 83 min TB


Di­rected by Di­et­rich Brügge­mann. Star­ring Lea van Acken, Franziska Weisz, Flo­rian Stet­ter, Lucie Aron, Moritz Knapp, Klaus Michael

Kamp Maria (ex­tra­or­di­nary van Acken) be­longs to a dan­ger­ous and rad­i­cal Catholic sect, a cult that be­lieves that ill­ness is “a pun­ish­ment for our sins”. At home, her abu­sive mother (Weisz) denounces the hor­rors of same-sex ed­u­ca­tion and acts as a kind of witchfinder gen­eral on be­half of her faith, a faith that for­bids al­tar girls lest they dis­tract the male parish­ioners. Truly chill­ing study of dis­torted belief. 15A cert, limited re­lease, 110 min



Di­rected by Paul Hag­gis. Star­ring Liam Nee­son, Adrien Brody, Olivia Wilde, Mila Ku­nis, James Franco, Mo­ran Atias, Maria Bello, Kim Basinger Is there an antonym for “seam­less”? If you come across the right term, then di­rect it to­wards this mis­guided port­man­teau piece from the cre­ator of the wrong Crash. Nee­son ar­gues with Wilde in Paris. Brody en­coun­ters peo­ple traf­fick­ers in Rome. Ku­nis has a break­down in New York. It’s all very gor­geous and very nicely acted. But the larger ed­i­fice feels dis­tinctly jerry-built and, sure enough, when nudged sharply in the fi­nal scenes it comes crash­ing down dis­as­trously. 15A cert, gen re­lease, 136 min


Di­rected by Stan­ley Kubrick. Star­ring Keir Dul­lea, Gary Lock­wood, Wil­liam Sylvester, Dou­glas Rain, Daniel Richter,

Leonard Ros­siter Wel­come reis­sue of a film that for all its prob­lems – that an­ti­sep­tic noth­ing­ness – still stands as among the most au­da­cious ever made. Whereas In­ter­stel­lar clat­tered chaot­i­cally from do­mes­tic drama to bad sci­ence, Kubrick man­ages the ex­tra­or­di­nary feat of im­pos­ing con­ci­sion on a story that stretches over four mil­lion years. The fi­nal hal­lu­ci­na­tory melt­down may have de­lighted con­tem­po­ra­ne­ous chem­i­cal users, but there is not a hint of groovi­ness to the sharp sur­faces and pre­cise pat­terns. G cert, limited re­lease, 142 min DC


Di­rected by Taika Waititi and Je­maine Cle­ment. Star­ring Taika Waititi, Je­maine Cle­ment, Rhys Darby, Jonathan Brugh. 15A cert, limited re­lease, 85 min Very funny, rather sad New Zealand com­edy con­cern­ing a group of squab­bling vam­pires in a run-down Wellington house. Nod­ding vig­or­ously to The Young

Ones, the film has enor­mous fun ad­dress­ing mun­dane con­cerns through the vam­pires’ warped lenses. Vi­cious, but rather sweet, the gang strug­gle to main­tain deco­rum while keep­ing the blood flow­ing. “Are you, erm, pre­de­ceased?” somebody coyly asks a still-quick ac­quain­tance. Looks great. Beau­ti­fully acted. DC


Di­rected by Nuri Bilge Cey­lan Star­ring Haluk Bil­giner, Demet Ak­bag, Melisa Sözen, Ay­berk

Pek­can, Ne­jatler The lat­est ex­er­cise in slow cin­ema from a Turk­ish master deals with the dis­con­tents of a grumpy hote­lier in a re­mote part of Ana­to­lia. Win­ter

Sleep is com­posed mostly of long con­ver­sa­tions that skirt big ideas as Aydin (Bil­giner) and his as­so­ciates at­tempt to dis­en­tan­gle the threads of his in­fu­ri­at­ing per­son­al­ity. In that sense, the pic­ture has the shape and feel of a character study by Saul Bel­low. It’s worth pay­ing at­ten­tion. DC

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