come in and out of their lives. But perhaps the real star of the film is the Tokyo of the 1950s and its corrupting influence. Part of Ozu season. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. Edge of Darkness (15) ●●●●● (Martin Campbell, UK/US, 2010) Mel Gibson, Ray Winstone, Danny Huston. 117min. See review, page 48. General release. The Edge of the World (PG) ●●●●● (Michael Powell, UK, 1937) Niall MacGinnis, John Laurie, Belle Chrystal. 81min. Powell’s first major feature was shot on the wild remote landscape of Foula in the Shetland Isles. Inspired by the evacuation of St Kilda, the narrative charts how the struggle to survive breaks down even the closest of friendships. Powell returned to the project in 1978 to add new footage for a BBC version, but the enterprise only proved that his original material and imagination had stood the test of time. CCA, Glasgow. An Education (12A) ●●●●● (Lone Scherfig, UK, 2009) Peter Sarsgaard, Emma Thompson, Alfred Molina. 99min. Sarsgaard is on top form as seductive cad David, the older man responsible for educating bright but confused schoolgirl Jenny (Mulligan) in matters of love and life in swinging sixties London. With only a few tired stereotypes to detract from a superbly managed depiction of the central relationship, director Scherfig here combines romantic drama and the coming-of- age tale to wholly enjoyable effect. Showcase Cinema, Coatbridge, Glasgow; Dominion, Edinburgh. Electron Club DIY Cinema: Communities in Action (E) (UK, Various) 90min. A selection of short films about DIY projects run in Glasgow–community events, growing food, claiming land, art things, books, allotments and storytelling. CCA, Glasgow. Fantastic Mr Fox (PG) ●●●●● (Wes Anderson, USA, 2009) Voices of George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Adrien Brody. 88min. Anderson’s inspired choice of stop-motion animation pays off in this beautiful and idiosyncratic adaptation of the well-loved children’s tale. While kids may enjoy it, Anderson’s typically arch humour is aimed more at their parents, who will also be impressed by the star-studded voice cast – Bill Murray as a badger lawyer anyone?. Selected release. The Flavour of Green Tea Over Rice (PG) ●●●●● (Yasujiro Ozu, Japan, 1952) Shin Saburi, Michiyo Kogure, Koji Tsuruta. 115min. One of Ozu’s funniest films on his familiar ground of marriage and relationships. Shaken out of the routine drudgery of middle- age by their over-enthusiastic niece – a childless couple begin to reappraise their marriage. Seminal Ozu, full of classic set pieces. Part of Ozu season. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. Flirtation of Girls (PG) (Anwar Wagdi, Egypt, 1949) Naguib Al Rihani, Laila Mourad, Anwar Wagdi Mahmoud. 120min. Egypt’s foremost comedic actor Al Rihani plays an elderly teacher giving private lessons to the young, wealthy and flirtatious Leila (Mourad), with whom he falls in love. Musical comedy reminiscent of 1940s-era Hollywood classics. Part of Middle Eastern Film Festival. Filmhouse, Edinburgh.
Kenner, US, 2008) 94min. See review, ✽✽ Food Inc (PG) ●●●●● (Robert page 47. Selected release. 44 Inch Chest (18) ●●●●● (Malcolm Venville, UK, 2009) Ray Winstone, Tom Wilkinson, Ian McShane. 94min. When car dealing old lag Colin Diamond is told that his beloved has met someone else, the ensuing fallout leads to lover boy (Melvil Poupaud) being locked in a cupboard while the East End’s finest cogitate on revenge and murder. The pleasures are incidental or theatrical and the plot is thin and largely meditative. As such, the film ultimately disappoints. Cineworld Renfrew Street, Glasgow; Odeon Wester Hailes, Edinburgh. G-Force 2D (PG) ●●●●● (Hoyt Yeatman, UK, 2009) Voices of Bill Nighy, Will Arnett, Kelli Garner. 90min. Jerry Bruckheimer- produced comedy adventure about a covertly trained group of guinea pig special agents who are charged with saving the world from disaster. Simple minded and likeable enough. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. Glasgow Film Festival (Various) See
feature, page 24. Various venues, Glasgow. Glorious 39 (12A) ●●●●● (Stephen Poliakoff, UK, 2009) Romola Garai, Bill Nighy, Eddie Redmayne. 125min. Poliakoff production with stately country pile, lavish aristo picnic, soaring score, a sensational cast of British talent and a mystery lurking within a family at war. With tension ripping through the screenplay, there’s more to this than meets the eye, with the archetypal otherworldly dialogue being ditched in favour of more precise exchanges while the sweeping soundtrack from Adrian Johnston underpins the austere drama to perfection. Glasgow Film Theatre. Groundhog Day (PG) ●●●●● (Harold Ramis, US, 1993)Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliot. TV weatherman Phil Conners (Murray) finds himself in the back of beyond, trapped in an ever-repeating single day. Partying and babe-chasing leads to serious romancing as he goes after his producer (MacDowell). Murray’s cuddly sarcasm stops the movie from becoming the kind of moralising mush that surrounds so many of his contemporaries. A genuine rarity – a Hollywood comedy that is really funny. St Bride’s Centre, Edinburgh. Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (U) ●●●●● (Carlos Saldanha/ Mike Thurmeier, US, 2009) Voices of Simon Pegg, Seann William Scott, John Leguizamo. 93min. Life is changing for Scrat, Manny, Ellie and co in many different ways in this the latest installment of popular animated series. Brunton Theatre, Edinburgh. Imagine That (PG) ●●●●● (Karey Kirkpatrick, US, 2009) Eddie Murphy, Yara Shahidi, Ronny Cox. 106min. Pedestrian but passably old-fashioned Disney-style recession parable starring Murphy as a successful financial executive who has more time for his blackberry than his seven-year-old daughter (Shahidi). When his career falters he finds himself drawn towards his daughter’s imaginary world. Empire, Clydebank. An Inn in Tokyo (PG) ●●●●● (Yasujiro Ozu, Japan, 1935) Takeshi Sakamoto, Yoshiko Okada, Choko Lida. 72min. Moving tale of depression era hardships with naturalistic performances as an unemployed father wanders the streets in search of employment and his sons are reduced to catching stray dogs to sell to the municipal pound. Part of Ozu season. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. ✽✽ Invictus (12A) ●●●●● (Clint Matt Damon, Tony Kgoroge. 133min. See review, page 48. General release. It’s Complicated (15) ●●●●● (Nancy Meyers, US, 2009) Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwyn, Steve Martin. 118min. Alec Baldwin and Meryl Streep play ex-husband and wife who suddenly get the hots for each other after ten years apart, in this farce of revived lust. While Baldwin’s Jake – now married to a much younger model, with a nightmare toddler in tow – jumps at the chance, Streep’s bakery owner Jane is initially appalled at her own behaviour. Uneven but not unfunny. General release. Late Autumn (PG) ●●●●● (Yasujiro Ozu, Japan, 1960) Setsuko Hara, Yoko Tsukasa, Mariko Okada. 129min. Reissue of lovely and poignant 1960 Yusujiro Tokyo Story Ozu drama about three friends’ attempt to find husbands for their late mate’s wife and daughter. Part of Ozu season. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. Law Abiding Citizen (18) ●●●●● (F Gary Gray, US, 2009) Gerard Butler, Jamie Foxx, Colm Meaney. 108min. Messily attempting to juggle crowd-pleasing retribution with cheap pot shots, this tale of one man’s fight against the corrupt judiciary system and the ambitious attorney (Foxx) that set free his wife’s murderer is undermined by a dubious morality and an unpleasant glorification of violence. Selected release. Malleable Spaces (18) (Various, Various, Various) 48min. A programme of artists’ films curated around the idea of filmmakers who work with unpredictable locations. Featuring films by Guy Ben Ner, Anna Molska, Gail Pickering and Guido van der Werve. CCA, Glasgow. Me and Orson Welles (12A) ●●●●● (Richard Linklater, UK, 2008) Ben Chaplin, Claire Danes, Zac Efron. 113min. Likeably frothy behind-the-scenes drama set over the Eastwood, US, 2009) Morgan Freeman,
space of one week the film’s time frame is guided by the rehearsals and first night of the Mercury Theatre’s legendary production of Ceasar, directed by Welles in 1937. In to this theatrical bear pit enters young artisan Richard (Efron) who lands himself the role of Lucius. Between Welles’ explosions and sexy assistant Sonja (Danes) it’s going to be a week he won’t forget in a hurry. Odeon, Edinburgh; Odeon at the Quay, Glasgow; Odeon, Edinburgh. The Men who Stare at Goats (15) ●●●●● (Grant Heslov, US/UK, 2009) George Clooney, Jeff Bridges, Kevin Spacey. 95min. A light-hearted yet intelligent trippy hippy satire on the strange-but-true story of the US military experiment to create a New Earth Army of ‘psychic soldiers’ preaching a creed of love not war. Witty and slickly directed, Heslov’s film features a cast on top form and is a definite crowd-pleaser with its sharp mix of humour and drama. Odeon at the Quay, Glasgow. Michael Jackson’s This is It (PG) ●●●●● (Kenny Ortega, US, 2009) Michael Jackson. 111min. Compilation of interviews, rehearsals and backstage footage of Jackson as he prepared for his final tour. Unnecessary and largely tedious documentary cobbled together by Kenny Ortega the man who gave us the High School Musical films. Brunton Theatre, Edinburgh. Moonstruck (PG) ●●●●● (Norman Jewison, US, 1987) Cher, Nicolas Cage, Olympia Dukakis. 100min. Cher on Oscar- winning form as a dowdy young widow who agrees to marry a man she doesn’t love in return for a secure future. When she meets his younger brother, it’s love at first sight, and she is torn between the demands of head and heart. Meanwhile, other members of her close- knit family are thrown into similar turmoil by the influence of a mischievous moon. Winning romantic comedy. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. My Name is Khan (tbc) (Karan Johar, India, 2010) Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Tanay Chheda. See Also Released, page 49. Selected release. Night at the Museum 2 (PG) ●●●●● (Shawn Levy, US, 2009) Ben Stiller, Amy Adams, Owen Wilson. 104min. Silly but enjoyable sequel to 2006 comedy. Ben Stiller’s night watchman joins characters from the first film in a battle to save the Smithsonian museum. Cineworld Parkhead, Glasgow; Cineworld Fountainpark, Edinburgh. The Night of Counting the Years (12A) ●●●●● (Chadi Abdel Salam, Egypt, 1969) Ahmed Marei, Ahmad Hegazi, Zouzou Hamdy El-Hakim. 102min. Robberies of unmapped tombs provide a valuable life source to a poverty stricken Egyptian tribe. A beautiful, if slow moving, examination of the importance of preserving history from cultural plundering. Part of Middle Eastern Film Festival. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. Nine (12A) ●●●●● (Rob Marshall, US/Italy, 2009) Daniel Day-Lewis, Penelope Cruz, Marion Cotillard. 118min. Federico Fellini’s most perplexing and iconic work 8 1/2 gets the Broadway to movie adaptation treatment with Day-Lewis (showing a previously unseen penchant for song and dance) in the lead. His mistress Cruz is the real star turn, among a strong female cast of Cotillard, Nicole Kidman, Kate Hudson, Judi Dench and Sophia Loren. Dominion, Edinburgh. Ninja Assassin (18) ●●●●● (James McTeigue, US/Germany, 2009) Rain, Naomie Harris, Shô Kosugi. 98min. Daft yet dull thriller in which pop-star Rain plays pyjama- clad killer Raizo – the most girlie-looking ninja ever captured on film. Although it opens with two blood-drenched set pieces, as police agent Mika (Harris) enlists Raizo’s help to track down the secret ninja brotherhood led by Ozunu (Kosugi), McTeigue’s film bogs itself down in mundane dialogue, drab Berlin locations and tedious fistfights. Selected release. No Distance Left to Run: A Film About Blur (15) (Dylan Southern, UK, 2010) 104min. Documentary footage of rehearsals for Blur’s 2009 reunion gigs, as well as interviews with the band, previously unseen archive material and a look back at their nineties Britpop heyday. Cameo, Edinburgh.
(Julien Temple, UK, 2009) Lee Notes on a Scandal (15) ●●●●● (Richard Eyre, UK, 2006) Judi Dench, Cate Blanchett, Bill Nighy. 92min. Lonely teacher Barbara Covett (a spellbinding Dench) becomes enraptured with new art teacher Sheba (Blanchett) until she learns a secret about the latter and their relationship shifts into something much more sinister. Less convincing in its melodramatic final stretches, but a good illustration of timeless class anxieties. Cameo, Edinburgh. ✽✽ Oil City Confidential (15) ●●●●● Brilleaux, Wilko Johnson, John B Sparkes. 180min. See Also Released, page 49. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. Oliver Twist (U) ●●●●● (David Lean, UK, 1948) Alec Guinness, Robert Newton, Francis L Sullivan. 116min. A classic screen version of the Dickens’ novel, with Guinness a sly Fagin and Newton a menacing Bill Sykes. Instead of making it a light children’s story (as in the musical version), Lean taps into the darker side and captures it all in crisp black- and-white images which still look superb. Cineworld Renfrew Street, Glasgow; Cineworld Fountainpark, Edinburgh. On the Way to School (12A) (Orhan Eskiköy, Özgür Dogan, Turkey/Netherlands 2009, 2009) 81min. Affectionate documentary filmed over the course of a year, about a recently graduated primary school teacher who arrives in a remote village in Turkish Kurdistan with no running water, a relaxed approach to school attendance and pupils who only speak Kurdish – a language prohibited by the government. Part of Middle Eastern Film Festival. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. The One Man Village (Semaan Bil Day’ia) (12A) (Simon El Habre, Lebanon, 2008) 86min. El Habre’s intimate portrait of his uncle, farmer Semaan El Habre, the only remaining resident of Ain El Hazaroun, the other villagers having fled during Lebanon’s 15 year civil war. Part of Middle Eastern Film Festival. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief (PG) (Chris Columbus, Canada/US,
Amelia (PG) Wed 10 Feb 11:00am (cuppa) 7:30pm Bright Star (PG) Sun 14 Feb 7:30pm
The Informant! (15) Mon 15 Feb 2:00pm (baby friendly) 7:30pm Thu 18 Feb 7:30pm
4–18 Feb 2010 THE LIST 51