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Zettel Film Reviews » 2008 » September

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Miss Potter – miscast

Tweet Miss Potter – Chris Noonan Innocence is by definition unknowing. The ‘magic of childhood’ isn’t something a child experiences but an effort by adults to describe the palpable, heart-stopping delight they see in the eyes of children entranced, absorbed in a picture, a story, a game. Or poignantly, cherished memories of their own childhood. […]

Cold Mountain – literature and music 1 – cinema 0

Tweet Cold Mountain – Anthony Minghella For Anthony Minghella it seems there is nothing like a good book: The English Patient (Ondaatje), The Talented Mr Ripley (Highsmith) and now his much praised adaptation of Charles Frazier’s Cold Mountain. In so far as this demonstrates a faith in good writing, I’m with him all the way. […]

Down In The Valley – Shane with attitude

Tweet Down In The Valley – David Jacobson Don’t miss this elusive, allusive film if it hits a screen near you. See it before it becomes a cult movie. Profoundly American, it resonates with the contradictions of a culture whose real roots have been severed and is therefore struggling to live out its own mythology […]

Syriana – straw men burn too easily, lets the bad guys go free

Tweet Syriana – Stephen Gaghan Pascal’s wager: we can’t know whether God exists so we should weigh the benefits of belief. If we assume He does exist and act virtuously, then even if He doesn’t we have lost nothing. However if we assume He doesn’t and act badly then eternal punishment is the penalty. For […]

Legend – Poem: on the death of George Best

Tweet Legend (George Best) Let us not talk of genius but celebrate the two edged blade of a peerless gift from which legends are born This imperious Caesar’s slaves whispered in his ear you are a god not mere man and so he lived our dreams played out our secret fantasies and flew too close […]

Birth – Kidman, ice-maiden – all ice, no maiden

Tweet Birth – Jonathan Glazer A.W Kaufman. Remember the name: a Casting Director who has managed to miscast a whole movie, with the inevitable exception of Lauren Bacall of whom one must say you can’t make a sow’s ear out of a silk purse. For me there is not a credible performance in this odd […]

The Phantom Of The Opera – Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s 1 trick pony

Tweet The Phantom of The Opera – Director Joel Schumacher You are on the edge your seat throughout the PTO: will the stupefying banality of the screenplay and lyrics, outstrip that of the music? It’s a close call, but after 142 interminable minutes I think the words won by a brass neck. There is after […]

The Break-up – crass, patronising, dumb-ass

Tweet dead-duck The Break-Up – Peyton Read Charmless, witless, pointless, meritless, brainless. Less-less. (August 2006)

Superman Returns – lanky lethal lothario loves Lois Lane

Tweet Superman Returns – Brian Singer Billy Connolly reckons a sign of getting older is that your feet get further away – harder to reach. So we should cut Superman some slack if it now takes him two and a half hours to save the world: a little chore he used to knock off in […]

Miami Vice – trendy men triumph again

Tweet bit heavy on the after-shave there Jamie Miami Vice – Michael Mann Michael Mann doesn’t bore us with this movie. But it is hard to believe that the director of Manhunter, Heat, and especially The Insider did not bore himself while making it. There is so little aspiration here. The original TV series was […]