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16 articles


Film Review: 'We Are the Best!'

2 hours ago

★★★★☆Whilst it would be churlish to say that Lukas Moodysson has ever really been away, it's still possible to proclaim his return with the irresistible We Are the Best! (2013). Adapted from the loosely autobiographical graphic novel by his wife, Coco, it's difficult not to be reminded of the authenticity and charm of Moodysson's 1998 debut, Show Me Love. Expertly combining a youthful desire for agency and rebellion with the death throes of the Swedish punk movement, it's a heart-warming tale with three captivating performances from its young female leads. The bespectacled Bobo (Mira Barkhammar) and the mohawked Klara (Mira Grosin) form a friendship based on mutual feelings of adolescent exclusion.

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- CineVue UK

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Film Review: 'The Raid 2'

3 hours ago

★★☆☆☆Around five minutes into Welshman Gareth Evans' The Raid 2 (2014), a door begins to shake. The camera dollies in as the lock starts to fall apart and a cacophony of impending violence builds on the other side. It's a Pandora's box of illicit possibility and, when it finally crashes open, Evans unleashes a tirade of lightening-fast martial arts, bringing us right back to the tight, visceral thrills of the film's 2011 predecessor. But then it stops, and we're sadly faced with a 150-minute gangster film that sags and drags when it should fly. Evans' ambition in both expanding the scope of The Raid and refusing to trade on past glories is laudable, but the shift from lean, self-contained action film to baggy crime epic is fatal.

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- CineVue UK

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Film Review: James Dean - An Icon Restored

3 hours ago

★★★★☆During the infamous "chickie run" race in Rebel Without a Cause (1955), there's a seemingly unassuming conversation that takes place between Nathalie Wood's Judy and Sal Mineo's Plato that neatly sums up five decades of audience fascination with James Dean. Plato - a shy, troubled lad - is exaggerating the extent of his friendship with Dean's Jim Stark, exposing his own vulnerability as well as Dean's irresistible allure: "His name is Jim. It's really James but he likes Jim more. And people he really likes, he lets them call him Jamie." We are Plato, intoxicated by the feigning familiarity with a dream just beyond our reach. Dean was Hollywood; a man who defined an era, an industry, a zeitgeist.

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- CineVue UK

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Film Review: 'Locke'

13 hours ago

★★★★☆Cementing itself as one of the best British offerings of the year thanks to a tour de force solo turn from Tom Hardy - whose titular labourer feels like he's been hewn straight from a block of his own beloved concrete - Steven Knight's Locke (2013) harks back to the bygone era of the one-person show. With only one discernible location - the interior of an expensive yet tellingly practical SUV gliding towards a date with destiny - Knight's follow-up to last year's Jason Statham revenger Hummingbird (2013) is more drive 'em up than beat 'em up. It's also utterly enraptured in the subtle drama of one perfectly ordinary man whose life begins to crumble around him after a past trespass comes back to haunt him. »

- CineVue UK

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Competition: Win 'Inspector De Luca' on DVD

15 hours ago

Having already seen massive success with their Bafta-winning series The Bridge, Borgen and The Killing, Arrow Films are thrilled to announce the imminent home entertainment release of Inspector De Luca, an exciting crime series which will mark the first Italian television show to be released by the new Noir sub-label. To celebrate the DVD release of Inspector De Luca this coming Monday (14 April), we have Three copies of the Italian period crime series to give away to our army of regular readers, courtesy of the generous team at distributors Arrow Films. This is an exclusive competition for our Facebook and Twitter fans, so if you haven't already, 'Like' us at facebook.com/CineVueUK or follow us @CineVue before answering the question below.

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- CineVue UK

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Special Feature: World Film Locations: Shanghai

15 April 2014 3:13 AM, PDT

Shanghai has a long, rich cinematic history, spanning from the Golden Age of Chinese cinema in the 1930s to its modern role as an international production hub for both Western and Eastern filmmakers. World Film Locations: Shanghai is the latest in Intellect Books' cinematic guidebooks, providing a considered and informed psychogeographical exploration of the relationship between cinema and urban spaces, with this issue focusing on the showpiece city of China's rapid economic boom. The backdrop for an eclectic mix of mainland Chinese independent films like Lou Ye's Suzhou River (2000) and Zhao Dayong's Street Life (2006), Shanghai has also featured in numerous western productions such as Mission: Impossible III (2006), Skyfall (2012) and Spike Jonze's Her (2013).

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- CineVue UK

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DVD Review: 'Walking with Dinosaurs - The Movie'

15 April 2014 2:33 AM, PDT

★★☆☆☆Branded after the hugely successful six-part BBC documentary series which aired back in the late 1990s, Walking with Dinosaurs - The Movie (2013) is a live action/CGI hybrid from co-directors Neil Nightingale and Barry Cook, and is released this week on DVD and Blu-ray. It's without doubt technically impressive, featuring some of the most visually lifelike dinosaurs since Jurassic Park (1993). And yet it's botched spectacularly by a paper-thin script and some laughably silly voiceover work from actors as Justin Long and John Leguizamo (of Ice Age fame). We follow the story of the adorably named Patchi (Long), born at the end of the Cretaceous period as the runt of a Pachyrhinosaurus litter.

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- CineVue UK

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DVD Review: 'The Story of Yonosuke'

15 April 2014 1:59 AM, PDT

★★★★☆Following specialist distributor Third Windows' past championing of Shûichi Okita's The Woodsman and the Rain (2011), the director's next equally impressive film The Story of Yonosuke (2013) receives a welcome DVD release this week which will hopefully introduce the filmmaker to a broader audience in the UK. Okita seems to be carving a very specific niche in Japanese cinema, with films focused on downtrodden, marginalised men with identity issues struggling to find their place in contemporary society. Such a premise is nothing new, and to draw attention to such male ineptitude for comedy value is now a staple of male centred Hollywood vehicles for the likes of Seth Rogen.

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- CineVue UK

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Competition: Win Ghibli's 'Pom Poko' on Blu-ray

14 April 2014 11:44 PM, PDT

From acclaimed Studio Ghibli director Isao Takahata and available for the first time on Blu-ray in stunning high-definition, 1994's Pom Poko is at once a unique window into Japanese folklore, a comedy of modern failings and also an elegiac tale of unlikely heroes fighting insurmountable odds. To celebrate the long-awaited Dual Format (DVD and Blu-ray) release of Takahata's Pom Poko Fill the Void this coming Monday (14 April), we have Three copies of this sumptuous Japanese anime to give away to our Ghibli-grateful UK audience, courtesy of the folks at StudioCanal. This is an exclusive competition for our Facebook and Twitter fans, so if you haven't already, 'Like' us at facebook.com/CineVueUK or follow us @CineVue before answering the question below.

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- CineVue UK

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DVD Review: 'Suzanne'

14 April 2014 2:19 PM, PDT

★★☆☆☆French filmmaker Katell Quillévéré's second offering, Suzanne (2013), is an ambitious attempt to present a good twenty-five years (or perhaps, in greater detail, a decade) of her titular lead character's life into a single ninety-minute feature. Following on from the coming-of-age trials of her debut, Love Like Poison (2010), Suzanne charts the stilted maturation of a flawed young woman. That Quillévéré manages to create an impressively touching dénouement to her latest offering is certainly praise-worthy. What comes before that is, regrettably, somewhat inconsistent with regards to how much it is possible to fully connect with and commit to her selfish heroine.

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- CineVue UK

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Film Review: 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2'

14 April 2014 6:20 AM, PDT

★★★☆☆When everyone's friendly neighbourhood wall-crawler was rebooted in 2012 it was to scoffs, with the credits having barely rolled on Sam Raimi's version of the comic book superhero. Marc Webb's The Amazing Spider-Man was largely a retread of the 2002 original but excelled in the improved chemistry between its leads, and in bringing a more faithful Peter Parker - played brilliantly by Andrew Garfield - to audiences. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014) swings into UK cinemas next week, and while it shares problems with its predecessor, it also confirms Garfield as the very best big screen iteration of Spidey. What's more, there's even perhaps an argument that he's the strongest of all of Marvel's movie misfits.

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- CineVue UK

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DVD Review: 'A Brutal Game', 'The Sound and the Fury'

14 April 2014 6:19 AM, PDT

★★★☆☆Jean-Claude Brisseau has been a mainstay of French cinema since the early eighties, despite some legal troubles in 2005 in which life mirrored art in the seediest of ways. Perhaps best known for Secret Things (2002) and The Exterminating Angels (2006), he's a director adept in sexual boundary pushing and transgressive provocations, poised on the shady precipice between liberation and exploitation. Axiom's rereleases of his earlier films, A Brutal Game (1983) and the Cannes Special Youth Jury Prize winner The Sound and the Fury (1988), certainly bear the hallmarks of what was to come, but they reveal a more expansive director with technical expertise and an original vision.

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- CineVue UK

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DVD Review: 'Fill the Void'

14 April 2014 6:15 AM, PDT

★★★★☆Tradition and duty are the themes of Fill the Void (2012), a tightly observed family drama and Rama Burshtein's debut feature. Set in a Orthodox Jewish community in Tel Aviv, the film draws a sympathetic portrayal of a young girl Shira (Hadas Yaron) who must come to terms with the sudden death of her sister, Esther (Renana Raz) and the position it puts her in of potentially obeying the imperative of the title and taking her place as her brother-in-law's new wife and step mother to her sister's child. The business of marriage is mediated via a series of match makers and family members and yet below the surface complex emotions are bubbling and Shira's dilemma is further complicated by her own family.

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- CineVue UK

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Blu-ray Review: 'Couscous'

14 April 2014 5:55 AM, PDT

★★★★☆Released on Blu-ray this week to capitalise on the success of his Palme d'Or-winning Blue Is the Warmest Colour (2013), Abdellatif Kechiche's Couscous (2007) is a film similarly built upon corporeal appetites, with the majority of its runtime spent around the bustling dining table of a Tunisian immigrant family. Flooding the senses with a warm, thematically rich and appetising drama about community and cultural identity, Kechiche's intimate portrait of migrant life in Southern France is a dish to truly savour. Slimane (Habib Boufares) is a 60-year-old Tunisian immigrant living in Séte, a port and seaside resort on the Mediterranean coast with a rich multicultural population.

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- CineVue UK

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DVD Review: 'Celluloid Man'

14 April 2014 5:32 AM, PDT

★★★★☆Cinematic fanaticism has been tackled in factual form before, perhaps most notably in Xan Cassavetes' Z Channel: A Magnificent Obsession (a title which would equally befit this film). But while the subject of that feature, Jerry Harvey, proved to be a dark and ultimately tragic personality, the legendary lead figure in director Shivendra Singh Dungarpur's fascinating 2012 debut Celluloid Man (released last year in India to tie in with the country's centenary of home-grown cinema) proves to be both a heroic and endearing advocate of film conservation. Indian cinema is a hugely prolific industry, and that was also the case during the silent era, which saw several hundred titles churned out.

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- CineVue UK

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Film Review: 'Willow and Wind'

14 April 2014 5:20 AM, PDT

★★★★☆To coincide with the release of Mark Cousins' A Story of Children and Film (2013), Filmhouse Edinburgh are rolling out The Cinema of Childhood - a touring film season exposing audiences to some of the rarest film's covered in Cousins' passionate celebration of childhood and film. The season launches this week with Mohammad-Ali Talebi's Willow and Wind (1999), a poetic and beautifully realised allegory for the disquiet felt in Iran at the turn of the century. Written by Abbas Kiarostami, this simple tale of a young boy's quest to replace a pane of glass broken during a playground football match is transformed into an adventure of tremendous poignancy thanks to the brevity of Talebi's direction.

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- CineVue UK

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16 articles



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