New user? Register here:
Email Address:
Password:
Retype Password:
First Name:
Last Name:
Existing user? Login here:
 
 
Reviews

Film round up

Jeremy Clarke

A teenage drama built around 1990's legendary Stone Roses gig at Spike Island (15; 96 mins) has its heart in the right place but sabotages itself with multiple plot storylines and a lack of focus. Less serious romp Bula Quo! (PG; 90 mins) features the Status Quo pair Rick Parfitt and Francis Rossi as themselves in a paranoid plot loosely reminiscent of Help! Alex Gibney's thoroughly researched, deftly executed documentary We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks (15; 130 mins) isn't kind to the authorities, but achieves complex, nuanced, portraits of both 'rock star' Julian Assange and whistleblower Bradley Manning without whitewashing either.

RFilm-round-up.jpgBased around a US drugs policy designed to make convicts name further suspects, Snitch (12a; 112 mins) places itself in the action movie camp by casting Dwayne Johnson as a caught-red-handed youth's concerned dad. Steven Knight bravely tries to turn the action genre on its head with Jason Statham in Hummingbird (15; 102 mins) as a homeless, former special forces soldier in gangland London who also helps a nun fund a soup kitchen. Iain Softley's more conventional Trap For Cinderella (15; 100 mins) concerns a young heiress, her best friend and a complex, convoluted murder plot that keeps you guessing right to the end. The much simpler Black Rock (15; 83 mins; pictured) realises its modest, three-women-in-peril-on-an-island plot more than adequately.

Shot circa 1928 in London on the tube and elsewhere, Underground (BD/DVD double pack, PG; 93 mins) exploits a handful of characters to paint a memorable portrait of the capital. Terrific Icelandic entry The Deep (12a; 95 mins) masterfully relates 1984's tale of a man who survived against all odds when his fishing vessel sank in treacherous conditions. The reasons he lived become a compelling conundrum to baffle science. A woman in an isolated hunting cabin is cut off from civilization by The Wall (12a; 107 mins), an inexplicable, invisible barrier which causes her to reassess her very existence.The deftly observed vignettes comprising Here, Then (DVD, 15; 94 mins) constitute a bold experiment in style chronicling Chinese youth. Iran's Abbas Kiarostami made Like Someone In Love (12a; 109 mins) in Tokyo; a heady mix of escorts, academics and the generation gap proves a beguiling exercise in storytelling. Frances Ha (cert tbc; 86 mins) trades on Greta Gerwig's likeable personality in an essay on a would be dancer pursuing her dreams.

The Children's Film Foundation Collection: Weird Adventures (DVD, U) includes 1961's The Monster of Highgate Ponds (56 mins) and Powell & Pressburger's 1972 The Boy Who Turned Yellow (52 mins). Finally, Studio Ghibli's animated From Up On Poppy Hill (U; 91 mins) deals with issues of absent parents and identity.

Leave a comment