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Reviews

Film round up

Jeremy Clarke

The German silent expressionist masterpiece Das Cabinet Des Dr. Caligari (DVD/BD combi cert U; 77 mins) is a gorgeous, colour tinted restoration of, arguably, the first horror film, with excellent contextualising documentary and informative commentary. Outer Space (DVD cert U; 48 + 58 + 54 mins) comprises three SF themed Children's Film Foundation productions, notably the tale of two boys protecting golf ball sized alien The Glitterball from the local burglar. Filmed in Super marionation (cert P G ; 1 1 8 mins) is the definitive, highly informative documentary about Gerry Anderson and his SF puppet shows Stingray, Thunderbirds and more. Both Outer Space and Filmed in Supermarionation form part of a wider, nationwide 'Days of Fear and Wonder' programme celebrating Sci-Fi. Terrific dystopian thriller The Maze Runner (cert 12a; 115 mins) has boys wake in a glade enclosed by a gigantic, impenetrable maze. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (cert 12a; 101 mins) is a decent adaptation of the comic, which - finally - manages to cram in the complex origin story of April, the Turtles and Splinter the Rat.

While Tim Spall is very good as Mr. Turner (cert 12a; 149 mins), Mike Leigh's cherished project concentrates infuriatingly on personal life instead of visual sensibilities. Drama Jimi: All Is By My Side (cert 15; 116 mins) attempts to portray seminal electric guitarist Jimi Hendrix without the rights to his recordings. Neither does their subject justice.

The Battles of Coronel and Falklands Islands (cert tbc; 105 mins) is a beautifully restored silent which effectively re-stages two key WW1 naval conflicts with warships on loan from the Admiralty. Frank Borzage's Oscar-winning 1932 adaptation of Hemingway's WW1 romance A Farewell to Arms (DVD/BD combi cert PG; 85 mins) truncates the book considerably, but remains impressive. The disc includes an alternate ending and some period newsreel war footage.

Portmanteau documentary Cathedrals of Culture (cert 12a; 165 mins) shows 'the souls of buildings' including the Pompidou Centre; it's a long watch in 3D. Unpatronising documentary The Overnighters (cert tbc; 100 mins) follows a North Dakotan, Lutheran pastor as he opens his church up to homeless outsiders in search of work. Cue tension with locals, congregation and family.

Palo Alto (cert 15; 100 mins) establishes Gia Coppola as a unique voice in its tales of teenage life, love and sex based on star James Franco's short stories. Debatable moral values, but an invaluable discussion starter. Theologically smart, compelling Nordic Noir The Hour of the Lynx (DVD/VoD cert 15; 89 mins) sees a lady priest sent to a care institution to talk to an inmate responsible for a violent murder. Finally, Guillaume Canet's first English language crime thriller Blood Ties (DVD/BD cert 15; 123 mins) is an impressive examination of sibling relationships.

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