Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Critical Week: How many fingers am I holding up?

The big screening for London critics this week was Luc Besson's deranged sci-fi thriller Lucy, starring Scarlett Johansson as a woman who accesses rather a lot more than the usual 10 percent of her brain. It's utterly bonkers, but a lot of fun. Other big titles included The Inbetweeners 2, sequel to the box-office busting 2011 movie based on the British TV series. This one's more cinematic but not as funny or charming. And it's made even more cash this past weekend than the original. Blood Ties stars Clive Owen and Billy Crudup as brothers on opposite sides of the law. It's a rather dry remake of the overheated 2008 French thriller Rivals. And Hector and the Search for Happiness stars Simon Pegg in an Eat Pray Love-style quest for meaning in life. Even an all-star supporting cast including the fabulous Rosamund Pike, Toni Collette and Christopher Plumber can't rescue this one.

Off the beaten path, we also had the gonzo comedy horror of All Cheerleaders Die, the beautifully made Dutch coming-of-age drama Boys, plus two involving docs: Ballet Boys follows a group of young dancers in Norway, while Still the Enemy Within offers miners the chance to have their say about the events of Britain's notorious 1984 strikes.

This coming week, we have Liam Neeson in A Walk Among the Tombstones, Andre Benjamin in Jimi: All Is By My Side, Jack O'Connell in '71, the horror thriller Alleluia, and a chance to revisit Dennis Hopper's The Last Movie in conjunction with an exhibition of his photographs at the Royal Society of Arts.

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