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Reviews

Film round-Up

Jeremy Clarke

Safe House (cert 15; 114 mins) is a routine thriller based around the concept of a safe house where rogue undercover agents can come in from the cold. Anchored by a towering Denzel Washington and carried by the rising star Ryan Reynolds (Buried), it 's certainly never boring. 
Sleazy and violent, Rampart (cert 15; 108 mins) benefits no end from its co-scripting by the legendary crime writer James Ellroy. The director Oren Moverman re-uses Woody Harrelson, his star from The Messenger, in a compelling drama about an out-of-order cop unable to se the errors of his ways.
In Dangerous Method (cert 15; 99 mins, right) , David Cronenberg casts Keira Knightly as a patient of Jung's (a terrific Michael Fassbender) who embarks on a very physical affair with him. A solid enough drama, its worth seeing but not one of Cronenberg's best. Bruno Dumont's Hadewijch (cert 12a; 105 mins) is a bizarre and sometimes hard to follow meditation on Catholic and Muslim spirituality. For instance, it's hard to tell whether the nun protagonist is or is not involved in the final reel's bomb explosion.
No such confusion dogs The Muppets (cert U; 109 mins), a noughties take on the TV Show which, once you get through the first ten plodding minutes, is patchy, but screamingly funny in parts. Chris Cooper makes a terrific villain and there are numerous enjoyable star cameos (watch out for Emily Blunt as Miss Piggy's Parisian Vogue receptionist). Big Miracle (cert PG; 106 mins), based on a story concerning Greenpeace and whales stranded in Alaska, is predictable family fodder. Australian drama Red Dog (cert PG; 92 mins), based on a Louis de Bernières novel, is more grown up, a clever tale of a dog making his way in an Australian mining town - the ultimate shaggy dog story and a great excuse for a clutch of compelling character sketches.
The 1930s desert epic Black Gold (cert 12a; 130 mins) concerns rival Arab leaders, one of whose two sons is kidnapped by the other, and the effect of Western oil companies on the country. Intrigue, rivalry and war, with a cast of thousands.  
Jeremy Clarke

Safe House (cert 15; 114 mins) is a routine thriller based around the concept of a safe house where rogue undercover agents can come in from the cold. Anchored by a towering Denzel Washington and carried by the rising star Ryan Reynolds (Buried), it 's certainly never boring. 

Sleazy and violent, Rampart (cert 15; 108 mins) benefits no end from its co-scripting by the legendary crime writer James Ellroy. The director Oren Moverman re-uses Woody Harrelson, his star from The Messenger, in a compelling drama about an out-of-order cop unable to se the errors of his ways.

RFilmRU.jpgIn Dangerous Method (cert 15; 99 mins, right) , David Cronenberg casts Keira Knightly as a patient of Jung's (a terrific Michael Fassbender) who embarks on a very physical affair with him. A solid enough drama, its worth seeing but not one of Cronenberg's best. Bruno Dumont's Hadewijch (cert 12a; 105 mins) is a bizarre and sometimes hard to follow meditation on Catholic and Muslim spirituality. For instance, it's hard to tell whether the nun protagonist is or is not involved in the final reel's bomb explosion.

No such confusion dogs The Muppets (cert U; 109 mins), a noughties take on the TV show which, once you get through the first ten plodding minutes, is patchy, but screamingly funny in parts. Chris Cooper makes a terrific villain and there are numerous enjoyable star cameos (watch out for Emily Blunt as Miss Piggy's Parisian Vogue receptionist). Big Miracle (cert PG; 106 mins), based on a story concerning Greenpeace and whales stranded in Alaska, is predictable family fodder. Australian drama Red Dog (cert PG; 92 mins), based on a Louis de Bernières novel, is more grown up, a clever tale of a dog making his way in an Australian mining town - the ultimate shaggy dog story and a great excuse for a clutch of compelling character sketches.

The 1930s desert epic Black Gold (cert 12a; 130 mins) concerns rival Arab leaders, one of whose two sons is kidnapped by the other, and the effect of Western oil companies on the country. Intrigue, rivalry and war, with a cast of thousands. 

 

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