Keaton soars in Oscar hit
A dizzying satire of most genres, Birdman is one of the strangest Best Picture Oscar winners.
Michael Keaton has never been better and stunning camera work combines with a magical jazz score for a feast for the eyes and ears.
It’s a challenging tale worth investing in — although the final shot takes things a little too far.
The Last Five Years (12)
Anna Kendrick again shines in a musical, this time minus fairytale characters and Rebel Wilson.
Virtually every word is put into song in a likeable, but forgettable, adaptation of Jason Robert Brown’s hit stage show.
While it works for a while, by the end you’re patience will be wearing mighty thin.
For her second directorial effort, Angelina Jolie recruits Starred Up and Skins star Jack O’Connell for a biopic of Olympic runner Louis Zamperini.
The one-time Lara Croft has a remarkable true story to work with — Zamperini becoming a prisoner of war in Japan after crashing in the Pacific.
Much of her movie works, not least another striking turn from Brit O’Connell in his ascent to Hollywood leading man status.
The cinematography by Roger Deakins (The Shawshank Redemption) is breathtaking too.
But too many prison movie clichés are wheeled out, with Japanese rock star Mivavi’s sadist commander Watanabe a strictly one-note caricature.