Never mind the frol­ics... here’s Nicole as a punk!

The Irish Mail on Sunday - - MORE - Matthew Bond

SEC­OND SCREEN

The al­ready much­missed John Hurt bids us a par­tic­u­larly poignant farewell – at least as a lead­ing man – in That Good Night (12A) play­ing an age­ing and iras­ci­ble screen­writer liv­ing in ru­ral Ibe­rian lux­ury with his much younger sec­ond wife (Sofia Helin from TV’s The Bridge) and, oh yes, a se­cret ter­mi­nal ill­ness.

So has the old ego­ist left it too late to re­pair his re­la­tion­ship with his adult son, Michael?

Based on an N J Crisp stage play, this couldn’t be de­scribed as par­tic­u­larly deep or chal­leng­ing but Hurt, right, is ex­cel­lent, the ini­tially un­der­pow­ered-look­ing sup­port gets bet­ter as it goes on, and Hurt’s own death gives it ex­tra im­pact.

Set in a near fu­ture where every­thing we see is com­mit­ted to hard-drive cour­tesy of the ‘mind’s eye’, Anon (16) posits a world where crime should have been elim­i­nated. Af­ter all, de­tec­tives like Sal Frieland (Clive Owen) can sim­ply rewind the point-ofview footage and see who did it. Un­less, of course, there’s some­one out there – liv­ing as a ‘ghost’ off the grid – with the hack­ing skills to change that recorded past…

An­drew Nic­col, re­spon­si­ble for cult sci-fi film Gat­taca, de­liv­ers an un­de­ni­ably stylish-look­ing film noir but is ham­pered by an over­worked screen­play and an un­der­pow­ered Owen.

A mere seven years af­ter the mod­est suc­cess of Gnomeo & Juliet, along comes Sher­lock Gnomes (U)

an un­likely blend of gar­den gnomes, the mu­sic of El­ton John and a pint­sized ver­sion of the world’s best-known de­tec­tive, now re­branded as the ‘sworn pro­tec­tor of gar­den gnomes’. Which is just as well as some­one is steal­ing Lon­don’s gnomes and the chief sus­pect is Holmes’s long-stand­ing ad­ver­sary, Mo­ri­arty.

An­i­mated Lon­don is great but the story is soso, de­spite some nice Holme­sian touches. Since it’s set in 1977, at the height of punk, I thought I knew ex­actly where How To Talk To Girls At Par­ties (15A) ★★★★was head­ing as three band-lov­ing school­boys try to gate­crash a post-gig af­ter-party. But their hosts are… well, a lit­tle odd.

Are they fash­ion stu­dents, con­cep­tual artists, a cult? Or some­thing al­to­gether stranger?

Based on a short story by Neil Gaiman, this is glo­ri­ously bonkers, with a charm­ing cen­tral per­for­mance from Elle Fan­ning and game sup­port from Nicole Kid­man.

BONKERS: Nicole Kid­man, cen­tre, in How to talk to Girls At Par­ties. Right: Alex sharp and Elle Fan­ning

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