mon 23/09/2019

Film Reviews

The Aftermath review - it looks great but it lacks bite

Adam Sweeting

Is it time for the rebirth of the old-fashioned wartime weepie? If so, this time next year The Aftermath will be dragging a clanking heap of statuettes round Hollywood, attached to the rear bumper of its 1940s army staff car. If not…

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Foxtrot review – controversial movie dances to an ugly tune

Graham Fuller

Israeli filmmaker Samuel Maoz’s Foxtrot uses irony and visual poetry to condemn his nation’s militarism. Twenty months after the movie won the Grand Jury Prize at Venice, it opens in the UK trailing a divisive history.

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Oscars 2019: Olivia Colman crowned queen of Hollywood

Matt Wolf

The 91st Academy Awards began with a rousing concert appearance from Queen to kick off a show from which Bohemian Rhapsody led the field with four trophies.

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Old Boys review - short but not especially sweet

Matt Wolf

How does the ever cherub-cheeked Alex Lawther keep getting served in pubs? That question crossed my mind during the more leisurely portions of Old Boys, an overextended English schoolboy revamp of Cyrano de Bergerac that flags just when it most needs narrative adrenaline.

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Capernaum review - sorrow, pity and shame in the Beirut slums

Markie Robson-Scott

An angry little boy, in jail after stabbing someone, stands in a Beirut courtroom and tells the judge that he wants to sue his parents. Why? For giving birth to him when they’re too poor and feckless to care for him. And he wants them to stop having children.

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On the Basis of Sex review – real-life legal drama

Demetrios Matheou

When the world is as crazy as it is right now, its political life dominated by dolts and villains, it needs a new kind of hero. That’s why Americans are embracing an octogenarian woman with more guts and integrity than virtually anyone at her level of public life, and why in quick succession we’ve had two films about her.    

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69th Berlin Film Festival round-up - what a banal Berlinale

Joseph Walsh

As journalists and critics were enjoying the unseasonably balmy weather in Berlin at the 69th Film Festival, all were wondering – where are all the good films?

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A Private War review - Rosamund Pike burns with passion in well-meaning biopic

Matt Wolf

The Sunday Times war correspondent Marie Colvin lived such a fearless life that it's a shame this celluloid biopic isn't correspondingly brave.

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Mektoub, My Love: Canto Uno review - cold carnal overdose from Kechiche

mark Kidel

Abdellatif Kechiche, the Tunisian-French director, is perhaps best known for the lengthy and explicit sex scenes in La vie d’Adèle (Blue is the Warmest Colour).

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The Kid Who Would Be King review - a timeless charmer

Nick Hasted

The Arthurian legend’s tight fit as a Brexit allegory perhaps proves how timeless it is as, buried and bound in the earth by Merlin, Morgana (Rebecca Ferguson) senses the land above is “lost and leaderless”, and ripe for her apocalyptic return.

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Jellyfish review - life on the edge in Margate

Owen Richards

Oh I do like to be beside the seaside – well perhaps not, if Jellyfish is anything to go by. Set in Margate, this independent feature paints a picture of a town and people that have been left behind.

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All Is True review - all's well doesn't end well in limp Shakespeare biopic

Matt Wolf

All may be true but not much is of interest in this Kenneth Branagh-directed film that casts an actor long-steeped in the Bard as a gardening-minded Shakespeare glimpsed in (lushly filmed) retirement.

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The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part review - everything's still awesome

Saskia Baron

Is everything awesome? Indeed it is if you like your movies brightly coloured, packed with jokes and really quite loud. Almost five years after the first Lego movie impressed critics and entranced its target audience of families with young kids, its sequel blasts on to the screen and will probably not disappoint fans of the original. 

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América review - a joyous portrait of young men caring for their aged grandmother

Sarah Kent

What a wonderful little gem! This documentary by American duo Erick Stoll and Chase Whiteside lasts 76 minutes, but I could happily have watched it for hours. The film addresses a desperately sad and difficult issue – what to do with an elderly relative who suffers from dementia and needs constant care – but does so with such a light and compassionate touch that it is pure joy.

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Boy Erased review - gay vs God drama treated with empathy

Tom Birchenough

Joel Edgerton’s second turn as a director is the second film in a year to treat the subject of gay conversion therapy.

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Can You Ever Forgive Me? review - no page unturned in a comedy about literary forgery

Saskia Baron

What is it with all these new films based on biographiesVice, Green Book, The Mule, Stan & Ollie, Colette… and that’s before we even get to the royal romps queening up our screens.

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