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vince vaughan

RN 2/13: High Society

By Audio, Cinema, Rancho Notorious and Reviews

Dan and Kailey are joined by pres­id­ent of the Wellington Film Society Chris Hormann to talk about this year’s pro­gramme (mostly shared with the rest of the coun­try), the import­ance of film soci­et­ies in a world where the­at­ric­al present­a­tion is becom­ing rare for art­house films. The trio also dis­cuss cur­rent releases The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Jupiter Ascending, Focus and others.

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Before Midnight poster

Review: Before Midnight, The Lone Ranger, This Is the End, The Internship, Camille Rewinds, The Place Beyond the Pines and Thérèse Desqueyroux

By Cinema and Reviews

Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy in Before Midnight, 2013.

As is so often the case at this time of year (usu­ally related to 48 Hours com­mit­ments) I am a little behind on my review­ing. This week­end I caught up on a lot the actu­al watch­ing (although apo­lo­gies to John Davies who sent me a screen­er of Remembrance that I haven’t yet sat down and watched) so now I will try and rustle up anoth­er one of my trade­mark col­lec­tions of “Capsule Reviews of Questionable Utility”.

Before Midnight posterOf all the movies I’ve seen so far this year, Linklater, Delpy and Hawke’s Before Midnight (after three movies I think it’s fair to cred­it author­ship sev­er­ally) is the one that has stuck in my brain the longest. In it, we catch up with the lov­ers from Before Sunrise (1995) and Before Sunset (2004) as they reach the end of an idyll­ic vaca­tion in Greece. Hawke’s Jesse is won­der­ing wheth­er he should try and spend more time with his teen­age son who lives with his moth­er in the States. Delpy’s Celine is about to start a dream job back in Paris where they cur­rently reside with their two ador­able daughters.

They are at a cross­roads but, as the film makes clear, when are we ever not? Delpy is mag­ni­fi­cent, cre­at­ing a won­drous, beau­ti­ful, insec­ure, infuri­at­ing and right­eous woman who is sim­ul­tan­eously proud and frus­trated at the role she has found her­self play­ing. Watching her I was think­ing about a couple of rela­tion­ships of mine that I ended. Maybe I was a little bit hasty. Maybe I was­n’t really listening.

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Review: Hit and Run, The Watch and Hysteria

By Cinema and Reviews

Readers of last week’s column will know that I am cur­rently over­seas on a quest, a mis­sion – a pur­suit if you prefer – hop­ing to dis­cov­er a new kind of cinema. After a week at the Telluride Film Festival in Colorado I am now in New York and have got a clear­er idea of what that vis­ion should look like.

I think I’ll name this new cinema good cinema and it’s main char­ac­ter­ist­ic will be the absence of films like Hit and Run and The Watch, two of this week’s new releases. Is it pos­sible to redefine rub­bish like this out of existence?

Hit and Run movie posterThe first is a Dax Shepard van­ity pro­ject about a man choos­ing to give up his place in a dull wit­ness pro­tec­tion pro­gramme so that his girl­friend (Kristen Bell) can get a job in the big city. In the space of a single day his pre­vi­ous iden­tity as a top get­away driver is revealed to her and his new iden­tity as a dreary small-town non-entity is revealed to the dim­wit­ted but single-minded hoods who he rat­ted out.

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Review: Summer Holiday Round-up (2010/11)

By Cinema and Reviews

T.J. MillerThis year the sum­mer hol­i­days seemed to have been owned by the unlikely fig­ure of T.J. Miller, dead­pan comedi­an, sup­port­ing act­or and eer­ily famil­i­ar back­ground fig­ure. In Yogi Bear he was the ambi­tious but dim deputy park ranger eas­ily duped by Andrew Daly’s smarmy Mayor into help­ing him sell out Jellystone to cor­por­ate log­ging interests, in Gulliver’s Travels he was the ambi­tious but as it turns out dim mail room super­visor who pro­vokes Jack Black into pla­gi­ar­ising his way into a fate­ful travel writ­ing gig and in Unstoppable he’s the slightly less dim (and cer­tainly less ambi­tious) mate of the doo­fus who leaves the hand­brake on and then watches his enorm­ous freight train full of tox­ic waste roll away.

So, a good sum­mer for T.J. Miller then, what about the rest of us?

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Review: An Education, Couples Retreat and Fighting

By Cinema and Reviews

An Education posterTwickenham in 1961 might well have been the most bor­ing place on Earth. The 60s haven’t star­ted yet (accord­ing to Philip Larkin the dec­ade wouldn’t start until 1963 “between the end of the Chatterley Ban/and The Beatles first LP”) but the train was already on the tracks and could be heard approach­ing from a dis­tance if you listened closely enough. Middle-class teen­ager Jenny is study­ing hard for Oxford but long­ing for some­thing else – free­dom and French cigar­ettes, love and liberation.

In Lone Scherfig’s An Education (from a script by Nick Hornby; adap­ted from Lynn Barber’s mem­oir), Jenny is lumin­ously por­trayed by new­comer Carey Mulligan (so ador­able that if she’s ever in a film with Juno’s Ellen Page we’ll have to recal­ib­rate the cute­ness scale to accom­mod­ate them both) and she gets a hint of a way out of sub­urb­an English drudgery when she meets cool busi­ness­man David (Peter Sarsgaard) and he whisks her off her feet, to the West End and to Paris.

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