Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Critical Week: Can we talk?

In my seemingly never-ending efforts to catch up with movies from the Cannes Film Festival, there was a UK press screening this week for Lynn Ramsay's astonishing We Need to Talk About Kevin. Tilda Swinton is of course amazing in what's essentially a horror film about a mother-son relationship that isn't remotely right. I also caught up with two high-profile American releases: JJ Abrams' enjoyable ode to all things Spielberg in the 1970s sci-fi adventure Super 8 (which has a strangely delayed release date here in Britain), and Robert Redford's dry but gripping exploration of some little-known Lincoln Assassination history in The Conspirator, starring the terrific James McAvoy and Robin Wright.

Other films included the divine Kristin Scott Thomas' latest French film, the wrenching dual-strand drama Sarah's Key; the lurid mayhem of the 3D British kids' romp Horrid Henry; the fascinating Japanese comedy-drama Sawako Decides; the gruelling inner-city Chicago doc The Interrupters; and the gorgeously photographed wildlife doc One Life - finally a bit of escape from what was a surprisingly heavy week. I also managed to get to the theatre to see the internet-based murder thriller Two Boys at the English National Opera - yes, really. It's fiercely original, with astonishing staging and a clever use of music and surtitles, even if it does portray all web chatrooms as the deepest layers of hell.

Coming up this week is the last film in the series: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, as well as the latest incarnation of Charlotte Bronte's classic novel Jane Eyre, a starry remake of the 1970s horror movie Fright Night, the youthful rom-com The Art of Getting By, and Morgan Spurlock's product-placement doc The Greatest Movie Ever Sold. And I'm also escaping from London for the weekend - which will be nice for a change - heading across the North Sea to visit friends in Oslo.

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