Film

Mamma Mia!

By Gerald Aaron, July 11, 2008

 (PG)

Over 30 million theatregoers have seen the Mamma Mia! stage show. If only half that number see the new film version of the celebrated Abba musical, then it will truly be a hit, and the song Money, Money, Money will apply. 

Fans of the band will not be disappointed. Others, for whom Abba is a four-letter word, need not apply.

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Journey To The Centre Of The Earth 3D

By Gerald Aaron, July 11, 2008

 (PG)

Jules Verne’s classic 1864 fantasy is revamped into a thrill-packed family adventure. Brendan Fraser is scientist Trevor who leads a party to the Earth’s core when the search for his missing brother goes badly wrong. First-time director Eric Brevig delivers in-your-face 3D effects early on, then entertainingly concentrates on exciting storytelling. A journey well worth making.

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Saving Grace

By Gerald Aaron, July 11, 2008

 (15)

Julianne Moore’s compelling portrait of the social climber Barbara Daly, who married Bakelite heir Brooks Bakeland, adds considerable impact to this true-life story of decadence, incest and murder. The melodramatic screenplay stages the story in six, sometimes disjointed, “acts”, but it says much for the control exerted by director Tom Kalin that the film still grips hard.

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Isabelle Stead gets an award nomination for her film, Kosher

By Candice Krieger, July 4, 2008

Film director Isabelle Stead has been nominated for an award for her creation, Kosher. The film — a comedy about a young Jewish boy who befriends a pig — is up for Best Short Script at the Super Shorts International Film Festival currently taking place.

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Akiva Goldsman: The script superhero

By Stephen Applebaum, July 4, 2008

Akiva Goldsman was raised among autistic children and spent ten years trying and failing to make it as a writer. Now, he has a screenplay Oscar under his belt

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Kung Fu Panda

By Gerald Aaron, July 4, 2008

(PG)

There have been times (Nacho Libre, Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny and Be Kind Rewind,  for example) when Jack Black has effortlessly gone over the top and delivered cartoon-like performances. 

Here, seemingly uncurbed by directors John Stevenson, Mark Osborne and Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger’s simple slapstick-oriented screenplay, his  vocal characterisation of the overweight clumsy protagonist of this cheerful animated comedy is infectiously funny.

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The Mist

By Gerald Aaron, July 4, 2008

 (15)

It does not take writer-director Frank Darabont long to establish a tangible atmosphere of unease in his nerve-scraping film of Stephen King’s 1980 novella (co-produced by Darabont with, among others, Harvey and Bob Weinstein) .

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The Visitor

By Gerald Aaron, July 4, 2008

 (15)

Writer-director Tom McCarthy follows his 2003 drama The Station Agent with a well-intentioned if sometimes rather too obvious political drama.

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Female Agents

By MichaelSophocles, June 27, 2008

Last week, former Apprentice candidate Michael Sophocles revealed in an interview with the JC that he wanted to review films for us. Always willing to give someone a second chance, we invited him to cast his eye over a French-language wartime drama. Here’s what he thought.

 (15)

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Teeth

By Gerald Aaron, June 20, 2008

 (18)

This alleged black comedy about a chaste young woman whose sexual organs have teeth, to the terminal terror of her sexual partners, never adds up to anything more interesting than writer-director Mitchell Lichtenstein’s deliberate but not very clever attempt to shock for shock’s sake. Avoid.

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