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Trance – Who’s Who and What’s What Mind games with Danny Boyle

Tweet    Trance – Danny Boyle Not all banknotes can be forgeries. A forgery can only be passed off as real against the background of a viable currency which requires that most notes in circulation are genuine. Much the same logical limitation applies to the central dramatic device that lies at the heart of the […]

Zero Dark Thirty – Kathryn Bigelow. The assassination of a terrorist

Tweet    Zero Dark Thirty – Kathryn Bigelow Lincoln could be described as portraying the unprincipled pursuit of a principled objective, in conflict with the principled pursuit of an unprincipled end. It is a tragic lesson of history that when old men possessed of power talk with passion about principles – young people die. No […]

Killing Them Softly – Andrew Dominik: The absence of other minds

Tweet        Killing Them Softly – Andrew Dominik One of the deepest and most interesting issues in Philosophy is that of knowledge of other minds. How is it that we can come to know, understand, care, hate, love another person? Indeed the idea of what it is to be a person is an […]

The Bourne Legacy – Tony Gilroy Keep taking the little blue, and green pills

Tweet      The Bourne Legacy – Tony Gilroy Fast, furious and slick. Gilroy’s extends the Bourne franchise neatly with enough narrative linkage to the absent Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) and the ending of The Bourne Ultimatum to carry credibility and engage us in the exploits of Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner) number 5 operative in […]

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – David Fincher’s skill beats the challenge of form

Tweet    The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – David Fincher Like buses, you wait for ages for a film with a charismatic, independent, strong female character: then two come along at once: first Sarah Lund (Sofie Gråbøl in The Killing I & II), and Lisbeth Salander (First Noomi Rapace, now Rooney Mara) in The Girl […]

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2 and 3D

Tweet        Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2 and 3D – David Yates   The best use of the 3D process I have seen in a film so far.  If 3D is to be more than just the short-lived gimmick it was when it was first used commercially in movies in the […]

Black is white: White is black: and then some

Tweet The Black Swan – Darren Aronovsky “And the Oscar for Original Music for 2011 goes to Black Swan and Pyotyr Illyitch Tchaikowski. Unfortunately Pyotyr can’t be with us tonight but he would like to thank His Imperial Majesty Tsar Aleksandr Aleksandrovich Romanov for his unfailing support and not forgetting his mum Alexandra Andreyevna and […]

Il Divo – the extraordinary life of Giulio Andreotti* – an essay

Tweet Il Divo – Paolo Sorrentino (2008) Shakespearean in content, operatic in tone, writer director Paolo Sorrentino’s Il Divo (the extraordinary life of Giulio Andreotti) is a masterly work. Richly textured and at times demanding, Sorrentino’s film is a profound study of power, and its irresistible affects on men who possess it and those drawn […]

State of Play – Crowe, Affleck, re-find their game

Tweet State of Play – Ken MacDonald Question: you have a cleverly plotted, superbly crafted, well written movie with first class actors on top of their form: these ingredients are drawn together with assurance and style by an excellent Director and edited to a heart-beat – at times racing with the breakneck pace of events; […]

The Reader – compassion not forgiveness: a moral dilemma

Tweet The Reader – Stephen Daldry This is a morally complex film: which probably explains why it has polarised critical opinion. The Reader demonstrates better than any recent film I can remember, the vital importance of what the viewer brings to the artistic experience – both to the quality of that experience and the value […]