I thought it was Bruce?
I agrre BDB - I saw this on a plane and it was pants.
I quite liked the Ang Lee version too.
In fact I really liked it.
Agree this was poo. whatever happened to edward norton?
I love Eric Bana, 'Chopper' 'Munich' and 'Black Hawk Down' are three of my all time favourite movies.
Eric's new movie/documentary;
Traitor - 8 April
You feel bad about Iraq. We get that now.
If further proof were needed, after the Sarah Ferguson/Martin Scorsese produced 'Young Victoria', that the film world has turned on its head, we have a political thriller co-written by.......Steve Martin.
Granted, Martin hasn't raised much more than a chuckle for 20-odd years, and there is absolutely nothing funny about this very sincere, very serious, very dull film about the causes and effects of Middle Eastern terrorism.
Samir Horn (Don Cheadle) is the sort of rogue CIA operative that Hollywood loves. He infiltrates a terrorist cell helmed by the suave, Westernised Fareed (Alyy Khan) and alongside Omar (terror film regular Said Taghmaoi) and a US-wide co-ordinated attack is planned. To make it ultra-clear how super-secret an agent Samir is, his CIA contact Carter (Jeff Daniels) regularly barks spy cliches such as 'nobody even knows you even exist' etc.
'Traitor' is so frighteningly balanced that the running time no doubt had to be extended by 25 minutes in order for every hawkish comment made by the FBI agents tailing Samir must be superceded with a liberal one . The following is sadly typical:
Samir Horn: Oh I'm a terrorist ? Roy Clayton: I don't know you tell me , you've been selling them explosives. Samir Horn: Oh I sell to who can afford to buy it... like the US Government. Max Archer: Only ours don't kill innocent people Samir Horn: Oh yeah they do genius, people just usually have darker skin
The trouble with such clunky political point-scoring is that its undone by the film's overall theme. While 'Traitor' takes care to discuss the motives behind Islamic suicide bombings, it nevertheless still portrays All Muslims As Rucksack-Carrying Terrorists.
What raises the film above such flaws is the central relationship not between Samir and the fair-minded FBI agent Roy Clayton (Guy Pearce) but between the devoutly Muslim double agent and his 'brother', the radicalised Omar. Despite his treachery, Samir's emotional attachment to Omar is genuine and it's made abundantly clear that he sympathises with the cause if not the methods of his extremist cohort.
It's important, therefore, that Samir cuts a lonely, detached but ultimately decent figure and Cheadle (who never blinks. watch him) is more than up to the task. This is a very fine performance unfortunately cocooned within yet another Hollywood attempt at self-flagellation.
'The truth is complicated'. This film isn't - 5/10.
Odd thing happened last week. Myself and a colleague were discussing the need to remake the Dirty Dozen with Sly, Arnie, Seagal, van Damme, Jackie Chan etc. Obvious really.
Then I heard about the following extravaganza:
Let the Right One In - 13 April
It's not very often that the creepiest film of the year is also the sweetest but, although the setting (Sweden), genre (horror) and themes (alienation, retribution) lend themselves to the grim, 'Let the Right One In' has a heart warm enough to melt the iciest Scandinavian snow.
Indeed, Tomas Alfredsson has made a film which constantly subverts expectations. The angelic, blond-locked Oskar (Kare Hedebrant) is being bullied at school and is glad of a pale, bewitching distraction in the shape of Eli (Lina Leandersson), the girl next door. Adolescent relationships are awkward enough at the best of times but this one is complicated further by the fact that Eli is a vampire.
Alfredsson's direction is inventive yet schizophrenic, but his lop-sided mixing of art-house intelligence with occasional Hollywood vampire schlock does not detract, quite the opposite. Although 'Let the Right One In' has several bloody genre satisfactions (a scene involving cats is perhaps unintentionally funny and the vengeful conclusion a delight), this low-budget film opts predominantly for psychological chills rather than hair-on-end frights.
The setting and choice of side characters also delight in the unglamorous. No high-school prom queens here. Eli's victims, who Alfredsson takes care to introduce, develop and flesh out (pun intended) as proper individuals and not just sacrificial lambs, belong a hard-drinking, cackling group of middle-aged, jobless working-class Swedes. Think Ken Loach meets 'Last of the Summer Wine'.
Eli is the 'monster', yet the film seeks takes to extremes the idea that society's notions of the monstrous are frequently more black and white than is the reality. Indeed, rather than assuming the victim role we expect, it is Oskar and not she that is consumed with impotent, unfulfilled rage. Eli kills out of physical necessity, yet her apparently innocent 12-year-old cohort has bloodlust of his own.
And yet, there is something Roald Dahl-esque about the retribution meted out to the film's various villains that is contradictory but oddly satisfying. The conclusion could be accused of being reactionary, but in the modern movie world of liberal moral relevatism, a little bit of unapologetic vigilantism is a breath of fresh air.
This will not be this year's most successful vampire flick, an honour that will fall to the admittedly enjoyable 'Twilight'. However, there are far more dark, bittersweet delights to be had in the grimy streets of Stockholm.
Take your girlfriend to see it - 8/10.
Not sure JB but he has starred in such classics as Scorpion King 2 and Fight Schlub ))
Eeek very excited
Race to Witch Mountain - 15 April
AT LAST! THE ROCK HAS COME BACK TO RENFREWWWWWW STREET!
The problem with The Rock (ok Dwayne Johnson), apart from the fact that his name is Dwayne Johnson, is bad timing. Had The Most Electrifying Man In Sports Entertainment embarked on a movie career 10 years earlier, he would have been laughing.
Sadly, in this uber-serious no-frills era of Bourne and post-Brosnan Bond, talents such as winning charisma, bulging biceps, an arching eyebrow and the ability to push a truck loaded with explosives down a mine-shaft while cracking a one-liner are no longer considered plus points.
Therefore, Johnson has been forced to feature in a series of frivolous kids action movies such as this, a sort-of remake of 1975 movie 'Escape from Witch Mountain'.
It's about aliens. Sara (Anna Sophia Robb) and Seth (Alexander Ludwig) are two little martians resembling American 12-year-olds who land in the back of a taxi belonging to curmudgeonly ex-con Jack Bruno (Johnson). Tailed by the FBI, mafia bosses and a Predator-lookalike, Bruno reluctantly agrees to help the kids make it to, erm, Witch Mountain.
This is undeniably lame stuff, but the presence of a rather menacing baddie in Ciaran Hinds, a kooky and refreshingly mature love interest in Carla Gugino and, of course, The Rock (please god give this man a decent vehicle) carry it along pleasantly enough.
If you smell..... - 5/10
In the Loop
Armando Iannucci's ferociously funny spoof on spin and a certain spin doctor is brilliant, brilliant... brilliant!
Scintillating script, wonderfully performed lines from Peter Capaldi and Tom Hollander with the effortless timing of a David Gower cover drive... sweet delivery.
My only problem is that the controlling idea is all too plausible... satire is dead, real life is so much more absurd!
oh that's good. skim read one or two mediocre reviews at work today and was getting concerned.
I did a a play last year with peter capaldi's neice.
My first visit to the movies in 2009 Dude...
.. I know.. shocking!
I went almost 10 months without going the movies... I was going 3 or 4 times a week and had done so for about 15 years.
Went to Spain for a bit last year, changed jobs and since I've been back home I've lost the urge to go... still watch a few on DVD every now and again.
In The Loop - 17/04
Newsflash fuckwits: swearing really is fucking big and VERY FUCKING CLEVER!!!!
And really rather funny.
Of the BBC's recent output, 'The Thick of It', a superb but only moderately successful political comedy was never particularly likely to be chosen enter the pantheon of cack-movies-based-on-great-tv-shows.
But Armando Ianucci, genius behind 'The Day Today' and 'I'm Alan Partridge' was given permission to do just that, and has upset the odds and history by creating perhaps the most acerbic, foul-mouthed and hilarious satire yet made.
Thankfully, the softly-spoken and deceptively polite Glaswegian remains firmly behind the camera for 'In The Loop', for the savage, 72% cocoa dark world of political spin doctoring occupied by the likes of Malcolm Tucker (Peter Capaldi) is no place for him.
Where previous television adaptations failed was the incorrect belief held by the writers that they need only stick to their successful small screen formula, delete the canned laughter and stretch the action out to 90 or so minutes. However, like Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the impish makers of 'South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut', Ianucci has grasped that big screen success requires something altogether more, well big, and opts to insert a smattering of medium-sized star names (James Galdolfini, Anna Chumskly), move the action (partly at least) stateside and amp every character tic up to 11 (the latter joke taken from another comedy film which is *whisper* not as funny as this).
Most effective is the vivid yet equally Machiavellian contrast between the grinning, reptilian American political machine and the alpha-male walls of Westminster, where rabid lapdogs like Tucker bully and berate vaguely well meaning but spineless cabinet ministers (Tom Hollander a seamless representation of New Labour vapidity).
And, while the comedic set pieces are gleefully over-the-top and the array of barked racist and mysoginistic insults a non-PC delight, the notion of politician as political commodity, sculpted, manipulated and ultimately discarded for the purposes of justying illegal war, is, as we all know, no great exaggeration.
However, it would be a shame if larger audiences were put off by descriptions of 'biting satire' or the political machinations which form the spine of 'In The Loop', because it is, ultimately, is just a breathtakingly funny film, with Capaldi's Tucker the greatest movie villain since Darth Vader.
Are you still fucking here? - 9/10.
Stonkingly good review Dudemeister... and not just because I agree with every word of it (Galdolfini's character was brilliantly conceived and acted)
Yes he was. Much as I love The Sopranos, I do hope that Gandolfini manages to come out of the shadow of Tony, because he is an excellent actor.
An interesting choice for him.
I also liked the guy who played Toby (cant remember his name), mainly because he got the best gag in the film (the anti-war shag joke)
still laughing at that one
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