Thursday, October 23, 2014

Oct 22nd   
Ida** (12A)                          
(Ipswich Film Theatre)

(Pol/Den/Fra/GB 2013)

In 1960s Poland a novice nun about to take her vows discovers that her family were Jewish but were mostly wiped out during the Nazi occupation, and she contemplates whether to live a secular life.
Moving, powerful and beautiful to look at study of an innocent trying to cope in a harsh world, with excellent use of the edges of the frame to convey suppressed human emotion.

Written by: Pawel Pawlikowski, Rebecca Lenkiewicz.
Producers: Eric Abraham, Piotr Dzieciol, Ewa Puszcynska, Christian Falkenberg Husum.
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski.
Starring: Agata Trzebukowska, Agata Kulesza, Dawid Ogrodnik, Jerzy Tryla, Joanna Kulig.
Photography: Ryszard Lenczewski, Lukasz Zal.
Music: Kristian Eidnes Andersen.
Editing: Jaroslaw Kaminski.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Oct 20th   
The Rescuers**   

(US 1977)                        

A New York orphan girl is abducted by pawnbrokers who want her to get the world's largest diamond. Two resourceful mice are appointed to help rescue her.
Enjoyable semi-anthropomorphic Disney animated variation on One Hundred and One Dalmatians, a shade derivative of that and referencing one or two of their other works, with nice moments of ingenuity and some occasionally touching songs.

Written by: Larry Clemmons, Ken Anderson, Vance Geery, Ted Berman, Burny Mattinson, Frank Thomas, David Michener, Fred Lucky, Dick Sebast, based on stories by Margery Sharp.
Producer: Wolfgang Reitherman.
Directors: Wolfgang Reitherman, John Lounsbery, Art Stevens.
Voices of: Bob Newhart, Eva Gabor, Geraldine Page, Joe Flynn, Jeanette Nolan, John McIntire, Jim Jordan, Michelle Stacey.
Music: Artie Butler.
Songs: Carol Connors, Ayn Robbins.
Animation Directors: Ollie Johnston, Frank Thomas, Mitt Kahl, Don Bluth.

Preceded by:
Burlesque on Carmen*
(US 1915. Essanay. 31m. bw. silent; Serviceable Chaplin spoof, quite faithful to the original, with his slapstick touches.; w,d: Charles Chaplin; s: Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance.)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Oct 14th 
Boyhood** (15)        
Odeon Colchester          

(US 2014)

The growing up of a Texas boy from childhood to his graduation.
A fascinating and quite affecting experiment filmed from 2002 onwards, though constructed much like a conventional teenage coming-of-age drama, except that the actual child grows before our very eyes (although his age is never made clear throughout the narrative), and there are only occasional indications from some of the period history in between (Iraq, Obama's election, etc.) Belongs on a par with Before Sunrise and some the director's other best "Slacker" films.

Written and Directed by: Richard Linklater.
Producers: Richard Linklater, Cathleen Sutherland, Jonathan Sehrigg, John Sloss.
Starring: Ellar Coltrane, Patricia Arquette, Ethan Hawke, Lorelei Linklater, Libby Villari, Marco Perella, Brad Hawkins, Zoe Graham.
Photography: Lee Daniel, Shane F, Kelly.
Music: Various.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Oct 10th  
O Lucky Man!**      

(GB 1973)                                  
Warner Bros/Memorial/Sam. 178m.

The odyssey of a coffee salesman who climbs the social ladder but just as quickly topples from it.
Epic satirical statement on the state of Britain in the 70s, indulging even more in the energetic semi-surreal style of If... with added Brechtian touches including musical commentary and actors in multiple roles (perhaps the closest film has ever come to replicating ensemble theatre.) The film and its various messages wear out their welcome (especially in a film so long), but it still entertains through its sheer quirkiness, with traces of homage to Griffith, Ford, Fellini and others.

Written by: David Sherwin, based on an idea by Malcolm McDowell.
Producers: Michael Medwin, Lindsay Anderson.
Director: Lindsay Anderson.
Starring: Malcolm McDowell, Ralph Richardson, Arthur Lowe, Helen Mirren, Rachel Roberts, Peter Jeffrey, Mona Washbourne, Dandy Nichols, Philip Stone, Mary Macleod, Graham Crowden, Bill Owen, Jeremy Bulloch.
Photography: Miroslav Ondricek.
Music: Alan Price.

Preceded by:
Convict 13**
(US 1920. 20m. bw. silent; An inept golfer is mistaken for an escaped convict about to be hanged, but with the help of his girl averts a prison riot.; w,d: Buster Keaton, Eddie Cline; s: Buster Keaton, Sybil Seeley, Joe Roberts.)

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Oct 8th  
Gone Girl* (18)  
Cineworld Ipswich                    

(US 2014)

A former media executive in Missouri finds his wife has disappeared on their wedding anniversary, and he is engineered to be the chief murder suspect.
Long and complex missing person thriller that Hitchcock would've had more fun with - and given the central character much more paranoia towards the police investigating him. As most of the characters are fairly unpleasant anyway, the unfolding of the plot's resolution (replacing the novel's subjective double narrative with the wife's account in semi-flashback) is the only chief point of interest, after the first hour leading up to the implausible twists.

Written by: Gillian Flynn, from her novel.
Producers: Leslie Dixon, Bruna Papandrea, Reese Witherspoon, Cean Chaffin.
Director: David Fincher.
Starring: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Carrie Coon, Kim Dickens, Patrick Fugit, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry, Casey Wilson, Emily Ratajkowski, Missi Pyle, Sela Ward.
Photography: Jeff Cronenweth.
Music: Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Oct 7th  
The Rise and Rise of Michael Rimmer    

(GB 1970)

An efficiency expert skilfully manoeuvres his way to the top of the British political system and then makes himself dictator once the public tires of his idea of total democracy.
Superficial satire from noted talents of the time, pointed but often painfully unfunny and somehow ineffective as entertainment, maybe because the main star is such a bland presence as an actor.

Written by: Peter Cook, John Cleese, Kevin Billington, Graham Chapman.
Producer: Harry Fine.
Director: Kevin Billington.
Starring: Peter Cook, Denholm Elliott, Arthur Lowe, Dennis Price, Ronald Fraser, Vanessa Howard, Valerie Leon, John Cleese, James Cossins, George A. Cooper, Richard Pearson, Harold Pinter, Julian Glover, Ronnie Corbett, and others.
Photography: Alex Thomson.
Music: John Cameron.

Friday, October 03, 2014

Oct 2nd  
The Lion in Winter**     

(GB 1968)                      

King Henry II tries to resolve his kingdom with his three sons, as well as his imprisoned wife Eleanor of Aquitaine.
An onslaught of acting from two titans of the British and American stage/screen (with equally notable support from some future famous faces), a melodramatic romp that takes a potted version of that period in Mediaeval history and crams its emotions into one moody Christmas weekend with the Plantagenets, made in suitably dark, brooding style.

Written by: James Goldman, from his play.
Producer: Martin Poll.
Director: Anthony Harvey.
Starring: Peter O'Toole (Henry II), Katharine Hepburn (Eleanor), Anthony Hopkins (Richard the Lionheart), Jane Merrow (Lady Alais), John Castle (Prince Geoffrey), Nigel Terry (Prince John), Timothy Dalton (Philip of France), Nigel Stock (Sir William Marshal).
Photography: Douglas Slocombe.
Music: John Barry.

THE LION IN WINTER. Present and future stars team up with a Hollywood legend for a nice Christmas game of Unhappy Families. Clockwise from left: Timothy Dalton, Peter O'Toole, Anthony Hopkins, Katharine Hepburn, John Castle, Jane Merrow, Nigel Terry.