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Film Reviews

The Extraordinary

★★★★½ - STUFF  - The French film-making duo of Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano have done it again.  After the twin delights of The Intouchables and C'est La Vie, the pair return with another engrossing, crowdpleasing charmer which will draw the whole gamut of emotions from viewers. Inspired by…
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Frida: Viva la Vida

★★★★ - STUFF "I've been thinking a lot," said a friend of mine, over a laksa, in an alleyway off Wellington's Cuba Street, "about the way our future affects our past." And now I'm thinking about that line too. And wondering if maybe the life and post-life of Frida Kahlo is a perfect example of…
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A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

★★★★ - STUFF  - Some interviews leave a lasting impression. I still distinctly remember talking Thanksgiving with Martin Sheen as he prepared to host the family, chatting about teenage crushes with Winona Ryder and getting parenting advice from a sweary Kate Winslet.  But, I have to admit, I've…
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A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

★★★★ - THE GUARDIAN - In last year’s lucrative yet scattershot documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, the world of the much-loved children’s TV staple Mister Rogers was gently cracked open for an audience who might be familiar with his on-screen persona but less aware of his personal life. There…
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Just Mercy

 ★★★★ - ROLLING STONE - Just Mercy isn’t what you would call groundbreaking — you’ve seen this kind of legal drama before, many times over. But the hard truths about racial injustice in its fact-based storytelling come through loud and clear, thanks to stellar performances from Michael B.…
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★★★★ - STUFF  - An hour-and-change later, I was walking back out into the Wellington sunshine, when a new poster caught my eye. "Bum," I thought. Some numpty has remade Doctor Dolittle with Robert Downey Jr. Because, on the face of it, there's exactly nothing that a 21st century Dolittle can add…
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★★★★ - EMPIRE   - As the 2016 election heats up and Donald Trump becomes a Republican front-runner, Fox News has never been more key to political discourse. But behind the scenes, a culture of back-stabbing, silence and harassment, led by founder Roger Ailes (John Lithgow), is set to be exploded by…
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★★★★★ - TIME OUT - Sam Mendes marries technical virtuosity with jittery thrills and an emotional core to reinvent the Great War movie – and deliver possibly his best film. A pure adrenaline hit of a movie that takes place mostly in the lethal glare of daylight, Sam Mendes’s stunning,…
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★★★★½ - STUFF  - After pulling double 007 duty in recent years, the recently knighted Sir Sam Mendes returns to non-Bond cinema with a bang. The British director, who burst onto the cinematic scene with the audacious American Beauty two decades ago, has crafted another compelling tale, which…
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A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon

★★★★ - STUFF  - Twenty-five years after playing a bit part in a short, a plasticine ovine is now undoubtedly Aardman Animation's biggest star.  Shaun the Sheep shone out amongst the flock in Wallace and Gromit's 1995 tale A Close Shave, going on to be the subject of a TV series and a hilarious…
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The Gentlemen

★★★★ - DAILY MIRROR  - Director Guy Ritchie is bristling with verve and invention as he returns to his old stomping ground of the London crime caper and delivers a twin-barrelled funny and violent assault with hugely entertaining results. A top drawer cast give top tier performances as Matthew…
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Little Women

★★★★★ - STUFF  - "Who would be interested in a tale of domestic struggles and joys?"  That's the question asked by Weekly Volcano Press' Mr Dashwood (Tracy Letts) of aspiring author Jo March (Saoirse Ronan), when assessing her Little Women manuscript. It's not the first time he's offered her…
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