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Film Reviews

Fighting With My Family

★★★★ - THE GUARDIAN These are big movies,” insists Michael Lerner’s studio boss in the Coen brothers’ 1991 hit Barton Fink, “about big men – in tights, both physically and mentally!” He’s trying to explain to John Turturro’s angsty writer the inherent parameters of a wrestling movie, insisting: “We...
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Older Than Ireland

★★★★ - STUFF  - A delightful documentary about bringing up a century.  One puts it down to keeping busy by constantly digging a hole and then filling it the next day. Another attributes it to never eating a vegetable in her life. The most successful grew so tired of being asked what her secret...
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If Beale Street Could Talk

★★★★ - THE GUARDIAN - With his third film, the writer-director Barry Jenkins carries with him an impossible weight of expectation, the kind of which he was less burdened with when Moonlight premiered in 2016. Before then he had made an acclaimed yet small-scale 2008 drama called Medicine for...
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Older than Ireland

★★★★ - CHICAGO TRIBUNE - One hundred is the new 70, or maybe even the new 60, or … You decide for yourself after watching a stunning and delightful documentary titled "Older Than Ireland." The film will introduce you to 30 people who are 100 years old (or older) but as full of life as any crowd...
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The Price of Everything

★★★★ - TIME OUT - If you’ve ever wondered who pays $20m for a painting, this sharp-edged look at the thorny relationship between art and money is for you. How can a sculpture of a balloon animal possibly be worth tens of millions of dollars? What effect do huge valuations have on the artists...
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Captain Marvel

★★★★ - EMPIRE   - Amnesiac Vers (Brie Larson) is training to fight a war with Kree leader Yon-Rogg (Jude Law). But when she is captured and interrogated by the enemy Skrull Talos (Ben Mendelsohn), she glimpses her past life on Earth as test pilot Carol Danvers. Chasing her captors there, she must...
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Everybody Knows

★★★★ - STUFF - In a small Spanish wine-country town, alternately drenched in a downpour or lit up by God's own sunlight, Penelope Cruz (Vicky Cristina Barcelona) is doing some acting. Cruz is Laura, once a resident of this town, now living in Argentina with her husband and two predictably...
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Everybody Knows

★★★★ - NZ HERALD  Iranian writer/director Asghar Farhadi, maker of quiet but piercing human mysteries (A Separation), yet again paints a portrait of a family under the suffocating chokehold of dark secrets. Laura (Penelope Cruz) returns to her childhood home in a small rural town near Madrid, to...
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The Guilty

★★★★★ - STUFF  - Fans of single-setting thrillers like Buried and Locke should definitely check out this compelling Danish story set in an emergency call centre. More used to a beat on the streets, police officer Asger Holm (Jakob Cedergren) has recently been confined to dispatch duty while an...
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★★★★ - STUFF  - In a better world than this, Celia the film would not yet exist. Celia Lashlie should still be doing her ground-breaking, revolutionary, compassionate and globally significant work, and she would never have found the time to sit for three days while journalist and film-maker Amanda...
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Swimming with Men

★★★★ - DAILY MAIL  - Amazingly, there isn’t just one film out about male synchronised swimming this year; there are two, a fact that, once discovered, filled me with absolute dread. For starters, I wasn’t sure male synchronised swimming was really ‘a thing’ but, if it was (and it turns out it...
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Vox Lux

★★★★★ - THE TELEGRAPH - Natalie Portman is outrageously enjoyable as a troubled pop star.  Stardom’s potency and price has been a hot topic at this year’s Venice Film Festival, not least with the unveiling of Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga’s new adaptation of A Star Is Born. But Vox Lux vaporises...
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