DVDs of the week
THE BREADWINNER (12) £19.99 THE EYES OF ORSON WELLES (E) £15.99
Eleven-year-old Parvana (voiced by Saara Chaudry) lives in Kabul with her father Nurullah, mother Fattema, older sister Soraya and baby brother Zaki. The Afghan capital is under the yoke of the Taliban, which enforces restrictions on women’s freedom of movement, forbidding wives and daughters from leaving the family home without a male companion. After an altercation in the marketplace with a spiteful Taliban enforcer, Nurullah is incarcerated and Fattema and her brood become prisoners in their home. Consequently, Parvana cuts off her hair and dons the garb of a boy to pose as her cousin Aatish so she can buy provisions and earn enough to bribe a guard at the prison to speak to her father. Based on the book by Deborah Ellis, The Breadwinner is a beautifully crafted and deeply moving celebration of the fragile human spirit as seen through the tear-filled eyes of a family struggling to make ends meet under a brutal regime that subjugates women.
Director, writer and actor Orson Welles seized 1940s Hollywood by the scruff of the neck with his debut feature Citizen Kane. Nominated for nine Academy Awards, including best picture and director, the film collected a golden statuette for best original screenplay, which Welles shared with Herman J Mankiewicz. Critic and filmmaker Mark Cousins exposes a previously unseen side of Welles in this documentary, which has been granted exclusive access to hundreds of Welles’ private paintings and drawings. Through these works of art, it reflects the politics and passions of the filmmaking titan in his own brushstrokes and sketches, drawing parallels between America of the past and concerns of the present day under President Donald Trump.
APOSTASY (PG) £15.99
Former Jehovah’s Witness Daniel Kokotajlo writes and directs this striking British drama, which explores the simmering tensions in a family after a transgression. Eighteen-year-old Alex (Molly Wright) is deeply embedded in her community’s Jehovah’s Witness congregation alongside her mother Ivana (Siobhan Finneran) and sister Luisa (Sacha Parkinson). As a baby, Alex was forced to have a blood transfusion to survive, which contradicts the edicts of her church, so she devotes herself to her faith and is diligently learning Urdu in the belief this will help her to convert Muslims to the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ cause. Her sister Luisa shocks the family by announcing that she is pregnant and the church’s elders decree that Alex and her mother must shun Luisa for her sins. The strain on the family is considerable and Alex seeks guidance and emotional support from an elder called Steven (Robert Emms), who harbours romantic intentions towards her.
Michael Caine, Tom Courtenay, Paul Whitehouse, Jim Broadbent and Ray Winstone have a team meeting before going to work in Hatton Garden Michelle Yeoh, Henry Golding and Constance Wu in Crazy Rich Asians