Film

A still from the indie game Monument Valley

How gaming grew up

28 March 2015

Sometimes a guy feels abstracted from the world. He visits Europe’s finest galleries, but the paintings seem to hang like corpses from the walls. The great symphonies fail to stir… Read more

Ella (Lily James) with her evil stepmother (Cate Blanchett)

Lily James's Cinderella is more of a doormat than my actual doormat

28 March 2015
Cinderella U, Nationwide

Kenneth Branagh’s Cinderella is a Disney film based on a Disney film, so is double Disney, if you like. It is a live-action adaptation of the 1950 animated version, and… Read more

Jerry (Ryan Reynolds) with his dinner date, Fiona (Gemma Arterton)

The Voices review: a hateful, repellent, empty film

21 March 2015
The Voices 15, Nationwide

The Voices is ‘a dark comedy about a serial killer’, which is not an overcrowded genre, and I think we can now plainly see for why. I was up for… Read more

French villager Lucile Angellier, played by Michelle Williams, falls for a Nazi soldier

Suite Francaise review: what is this film playing at, when it comes to Jews in attics?

14 March 2015
Suite Française 15, Nationwide

Suite Française is being billed as a second world war romance about ‘forbidden love’ and, in this regard, it is handsome, solid, well played and probably fine, if you haven’t… Read more

Staying power: Harrison Ford as Rick Deckard in ‘Blade Runner: The Final Cut’

How Ridley Scott’s sci-fi classic, Blade Runner, foresaw the way we live today

7 March 2015

In 1977 a journeyman actor called Brian Kelly optioned a science-fiction novel called Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? The book’s author, Philip K. Dick, had been writing science fiction… Read more

Oscar winning role: Julianne Moore in Still Alice

Still Alice review: you can see why Julianne Moore won an Oscar but the film’s still boring

7 March 2015
Still Alice 12A

There’s always seemed something masklike about Julianne Moore’s face: she seems walled in by her beauty. When she smiles, the only thing that moves is her mouth; that superb fenderwork… Read more

Recording sound effects Photo: Getty

All radio drama should be as good as this Conrad adaptation

7 March 2015

The aching hum of crickets. The susurrus of reeds. The lapping of waves. The unmistakable noise of a sound technician ripping a duster in two as the heroine’s dress was… Read more

Jennifer Lopez sets her sights on the boy next door

The Boy Next Door reviewed: a terrible new J-Lo movie that's disturbingly enjoyable

28 February 2015
The Boy Next Door 15
Hinterland 15

Stateside critics, who panned Jennifer Lopez’s new film The Boy Next Door on its US release last month, may be unaware of the ability of the British to enjoy a… Read more

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Fifty Shades of Grey, review: ‘Use a condom!’ my sister shouted

21 February 2015
Fifty Shades of Grey 18, Nationwide

And so, in the end, I went with my sister, Toni, to see Fifty Shades of Grey and we saw it at noon on Valentine’s Day at the Odeon in… Read more

BGC Charity Day

My moment of mortification with Saint Joan Collins

14 February 2015

I did a film with Dame Joan Collins once. No no, not The Stud. It wasn’t as good as that. It was called The Clandestine Marriage. And although it wasn’t… Read more

King maker: David Oyelowo in ‘Selma’, the best performance of the year not nominated for an Oscar

Selma review: rich, nuanced, heartbreaking

7 February 2015
Selma 12A

Selma, the civil rights film that stars David Oyelowo as Martin Luther King, undoubtedly contains the best and most powerful performance of the year as not nominated for an Oscar.… Read more

Turning Japanese: ‘Spirited Away’ by Hayao Miyazaki, who has influenced Pixar’s latest offering, Big Hero 6

How Japan became a pop culture superpower

31 January 2015

There is an island nation, just off the main body of a continent. It gained an empire from the force of its military and the finesse of its trading contracts.… Read more

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Trash, review: trash by name, trash by nature

31 January 2015
Trash 15, Nationwide

Trash is the sort of film one desperately wishes to be kind about — heart supremely, if not burstingly, in the right place and all that — but it doesn’t… Read more

No Strings

How consumer habits are subject to the law of unintended consequences

31 January 2015

Some time in the 1960s, a group of people in an advertising agency (among them Llewelyn Thomas, son of Dylan) found themselves debating the direction of causation in the purchase… Read more

A Most Violent Year2

A Most Violent Year, review: mesmerising performances - and coats

24 January 2015
A Most Violent Year 15, Nationwide

A Most Violent Year is a riveting drama even though I can’t tell you what it’s about, or even what it actually is. (What’s new?) Set in New York City… Read more

‘Exceptionally good’: Alicia Vikander as Vera Brittain in ‘Testament of Youth’

Shirley Williams: Saving my mother from the scriptwriters

17 January 2015

Shirley Williams sits at the head of a table in a large conference room in Lib Dem HQ. She will be 85 this year, but still has a finger in… Read more

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Wild made me want to puke

17 January 2015
Wild 15, Nationwide

Wild is yet another film based on a true story, as currently seems to be in vogue for some reason. (See The Imitation Game, Foxcatcher, The Theory of Everything, Testament… Read more

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Stephen Hawking is a mysogynist. And The Theory of Everything is a whitewash

10 January 2015

Stephen Hawking is a misogynist; and also, quite possibly, a narcissist. You wouldn’t know it from watching The Theory Of Everything, the new biopic from Working Title, in which you… Read more

Chico, Harpo and Groucho Marx (left to right) enjoy a day at the races

What unites Churchill, Dali and T.S. Eliot? They all worshipped the Marx Brothers

10 January 2015

‘I had no idea you were so handsome,’ Groucho Marx wrote to T.S. Eliot in 1961 on receiving from him a signed studio portrait. The Missouri-born Eliot was the Marx… Read more

Channing Tatum and Steve Carell

Foxcatcher: piercing, shattering, spellbinding

10 January 2015
Foxcatcher 15, Nationwide

Foxcatcher is a crime drama (of sorts) that has already been dubbed ‘Oscarcatcher!’ as it barely puts a foot wrong. It is tautly directed, deftly written, thoroughly gripping and offers… Read more

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Birdman: plenty to see, little to feel

3 January 2015
Birdman 15, Nationwide

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman, which stars Michael Keaton as a one-time superhero movie star (just like Keaton himself), is audacious technically, and so meta it may well blow your mind,… Read more

13 December 2014

Marking a century Some things which celebrate their 100th birthday in 2015: 3-D films The first was shown at the Astor Theater in New York on 10 June, featuring the… Read more

‘I wanted my wine to have deeper shadows’

Michael Seresin – from film noir to pinot noir

6 December 2014

Michael Seresin claims, rather modestly, to ‘have no palate’, choosing instead to describe wine with light, colour and form. These are not your typical winemaker’s terms, but they make perfect… Read more

Too lovable: Bill Murray and Jaeden Lieberher in ‘St. Vincent’

St. Vincent: too much lovability and not enough roguishness from Bill Murray

6 December 2014
St. Vincent 12A, Nationwide

Is Bill Murray fit for sainthood? Certainly his fans have him figure as some sort of lesser divinity, maybe one of the more saturnalian Greeks or pagans, with a taste… Read more

Jack O’Connell in ‘Unbroken’ — out next month — one of the few films today with a star writing team, the Coen brothers

How Hollywood is killing the art of screenwriting

29 November 2014

Writing is dead. Long live writing. What do I mean when I say writing is dead? That’s a whole other article, but in brief: cinema killed the novel, email killed… Read more