tue 12/11/2019

Film Reviews

Mary Queen of Scots review - Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie excel

Graham Fuller

Very much a woman of today, the Catholic Stuart heroine (Saoirse Ronan) of Mary Queen of Scots frequently hacks her way out of a thicket of power-hungry males, enjoys it when her English suitor Lord Darnley (Jack Lowden) goes down on her, and is amused when her gay secretary and minstrel David Rizzio (Ismael Cruz Cordova)...

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Glass review - shattered Shyamalan sequel

Nick Hasted

M Night Shyamalan is the Orson Welles of twist-ending fantasy, forever condemned to reach back to his first two successes. The Sixth Sense still stands alone, though its haunted chill shivers through much recent horror.

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Monsters and Men review - an impressive debut

Saskia Baron

This well-crafted addition to the films inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement is subtler and less commercial than last year’s The Hate U Give but covers similar terrain. Write...

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Beautiful Boy review - well-acted but a slog

Matt Wolf

The tortuous road to addiction and back again – or maybe not  makes for a faintly tedious experience in Beautiful Boy, notwithstanding the committed performances of an A-list cast.

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Colette review - Keira Knightley thrives in Paris

Owen Richards

In a telling scene midway through Colette, our lead is told that rather than get used to marriage, it is “better to make marriage get used to you.” In this retelling of the remarkable Colette’s rise, it is evident she did much more than that; by the time she was done, all of Paris was moulded in her image, and in the hands...

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Life Itself review - epically vapid

Matt Wolf

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade: that bromide is about the only one absent from the astonishingly bad Life Itself, which in actuality might require a stiff drink to make it through the film intact.

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Welcome to Marwen review - Carell and Zemeckis fail to hit stride

Ralph Moore

In the proverbial melting pot, this film has all the right ingredients.

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An Impossible Love review - toxic romance across the years

Tom Baily

This is a love that begins sweetly, turns terrible, and is told with unflinching directness.

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The Favourite review - scintillatingly warped portrait of the court of Queen Anne

Adam Sweeting

It can be fascinating to see ourselves as others see us.

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Best of 2018: Film

theartsdesk

While the Academy Awards is still searching for a host, theartsdesk's relatively controversy-free 2018 means we're ready for our end of year tributes.

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Papillon review - a not very great escape

Jasper Rees

The story of Henri Charrière’s gruelling ordeal as a prisoner in French Guiana and eventual escape was a bestseller on everyone’s bookshelf in the 1970s.

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Mary Poppins Returns review - Emily Blunt makes the role her own

Veronica Lee

It's perhaps unfair to review a film through the prism of one that predates it by more than half a century, but even fans of Mary Poppins Returns (and I am one of them) can't help doing so.

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Springsteen on Broadway, Netflix review - one-man band becomes one-man show

Adam Sweeting

When Bruce Springsteen’s one-man show opened at the Walter Kerr Theatre on New York’s West 48th Street in October last year it was only supposed to run for six weeks.

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Lizzie review - murder most meticulous

Adam Sweeting

The story of Lizzie Borden, controversially acquitted of murdering her father and stepmother with an axe in Fall River, Massachusetts in 1892, has been explored many times on screen and in print (there’s even an opera and a musical version, not to mention the Los Angeles metal band Lizzy Borden).

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Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse review - a new hope for the superhero genre

Joseph Walsh

After Sam Raimi’s original mixed-bag trilogy, Andrew Garfield’s all too familiar outing as the webslinger, and last year’s Spider-Man: Homecoming, it would be fair to say we’ve had enough Spider-Man films. Despite the potential fatigue from yet-another-origins story, we now have Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.

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The Old Man & the Gun review - sundown on Sundance

Adam Sweeting

Despite having enjoyed a prolific few years in which he has appeared in (among others) All Is Lost, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Truth and Our Souls at Night, Robert Redford has said that The Old Man & the Gun will be his last film role.

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