Tuesday, July 14, 2015

FILM STUFF 15th July 2015

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Ant-Man ✪✪✪✪ ½ (Opens 16th July most cinemas)
My Thoughts
   It’s been a bad month or so of very average blockbuster releases, and up steps the next contender to the crown of summer blockbuster winner. Ant-Man, the next franchise to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe has arrived just in time to restore my faith in big films.
   Perfectly-cast Paul Rudd plays the diminutive super hero to a T. The same charisma and comedic timing that saw his star rise in comedies and romances comes very well to play in his take on his down-and-out character Scott Lang, who accidentally becomes Ant-Man. Michael Douglas plays Dr. Hank Pym as only he can. He’s seventy, by the way, and makes seventy look the new fifty. He’s the civic-minded scientist who invents the shrinking suit, but decides it’s power is too dangerous for the world. He’s at odds with his daughter, Hope (Evangeline Lilly), who works at the company Pym founded but from which he's been sent packing years before.  Hope appears aligned with protégé turned enemy, Darren Cross (Corey Stoll).
   If you wanted to look for plot holes and clichés, yes, we’ve seen the evil corporation guy abscond with the hi-tech product so he can sell it to the bad guys for millions. The good guys must become the bad guys to save the day—yep, been done repeatedly. The daughter who feels her parent doesn’t respect or value her even though she’s very capable—I’d say that’s pretty much a stock standard plot device.
  However, the characters and story are written in such an innovative, self-deprecating way, you don’t even notice. The animation of the small world and Ant-Man changing from big to tiny and back to big as he fights all comers is brilliant and exciting.
   There are also enough nods to the previous Marvel Universe to make fans feel as though this is a worthy detour. I wasn’t eagerly awaiting Ant-Man, because Avengers: Age of Ultron was such a disappointment. I see Ant-Man is in next year’s Captain America: Civil War, and now I’m really looking forward to that one a lot more.
   Do stay until the very end of the credits. As per usual, there are extra scenes. There are two in this one. He might be small, but Ant-Man has added a huge dose of extra fun to the Avengers franchise. See it on the big screen.
Film Blurb
   The next evolution of the Marvel Cinematic Universe brings a founding member of The Avengers to the big screen for the first time with Marvel Studios' "Ant-Man." Armed with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, master thief Scott Lang must embrace his inner-hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym, protect the secret behind his spectacular Ant-Man suit from a new generation of towering threats. Against seemingly insurmountable obstacles, Pym and Lang must plan and pull off a heist that will save the world. -- (C) Marvel
Films being remade (You may ask why? I am.)

Point Break
Fantastic Four
Ben-Hur (Jack Huston)
The Crow
An American Werewolf in London
Barbarella (tv series)
Dirty Dancing
Ghost Busters
The Never Ending Story
The Birds
My Fair Lady
Romancing the Stone
Westwordl (tv series)
National Lampoons (now called Vacation)
Expendabelles (female Expendables)
Logans Run
Tomb Raider
Police Academy
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
Perry Mason
The Invisible Man
Private Benjamin (Rebel Wilson)
Drop Dead Fred

National Theatre Live: The Audience
Date: Saturday 18th to Thursday 30th July 2015
Time:  11:30 AM & 1:00 PM sessions
Location: Luna Leederville & Luna Essex Fremantle

   Helen Mirren reprises her Academy Award®-winning role as Queen Elizabeth II in encore screenings of the original West End production of The Audience, captured live in London in 2013, and featuring an exclusive new Q&A with key members of the cast and creative team.
  For sixty years, Queen Elizabeth II has met with each of her twelve Prime Ministers in a private weekly meeting. This meeting is known as The Audience. No one knows what they discuss, not even their spouses.
   From the old warrior Winston Churchill, to the Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher, Blair right up to today’s meetings with the current incumbent David Cameron, the Queen advises her Prime Ministers on all matters both public and personal. Through these private audiences, we see glimpses of the woman behind the crown and witness the moments that shaped a monarch.
   The Audience is written by Peter Morgan (The Queen) and directed by two-time Tony Award® winner and Academy Award®-nominated director Stephen Daldry (Billy Elliot, The Hours) and was presented in the West End by Matthew Byam Shaw for Playful Productions, Robert Fox and Andy Harries
Tony Award Winner 2015:
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play Helen Mirren, The Audience 
Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play Richard McCabe, The Audience 

ENO: Pirates of Penzance
Date: Sat 18 Jul - Sun 19 Jul
Time:  1 PM
Location: Windsor Cinema      Details and Booking

All productions are sung in the English language, it’s opera for everyone!
   English National Opera’s (ENO) cinema broadcast of Mike Leigh’s production of The Pirates of Penzance is the UK's most successful opera on screen event, breaking box office records.
Fresh from the major success of his celebrated film Mr Turner, renowned film maker, director and Gilbert & Sullivan aficionado Mike Leigh makes his opera directing debut with this eagerly anticipated new production of sparkling comic masterpiece The Pirates of Penzance. In a hilarious performance where comedy and romance combine with surprising twists and turns, this popular farcical comedy features swashbuckling pirates, flat footed policemen, razor sharp satire and memorable melodies.
   The Pirates of Penzance tells the story of the pirate apprentice Frederic and his love for Mabel, the daughter of Major-General Stanley who has the famous tongue-twisting patter song ‘I am the very model of a modern Major-General’.

Date: Thursday 23rd July 2015 – 29th July
Location: Cinema Paradiso               Details and Booking

   After the stunning success of the debut Scandinavian Film Festival last year, the 2015 program, presented by Palace and Luna Palace Cinemas, will showcase the most exciting dramas, comedies and thrillers from Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Iceland.

Date: Thursday 23rd July 2015
Time:  6 PM for 7 PM start
Location: Cinema Paradiso      Details and Booking

   Put down the allen key and be distracted by the Perth premiere of HERE IS HAROLD with a pre-screening Scandi celebration with Brown Brothers Grape Tree, Cake Wines, Nordic flavours by Miss Maud, Castello cheese and live entertainment by Joni in the Moon.
   The second Scandinavian Film Festival will open with the uproarious HERE IS HAROLD (Her er Harold), a Norwegian road movie, about a man who sets out to kidnap the founder of Ikea.For over 40 years, Harold has been running a successful business, "Lunde Furniture,” but this comes to an end when IKEA decides to open a new superstore right next door to his small furniture shop. In mounting anger and desperation, Harold wants revenge. He arms himself with a pistol and sets off for Älmhult, Sweden, in order to kidnap his Nemesis - the founder of IKEA, Ingvar Kamprad. But unfortunately, Kamprad is quite happy to be kidnapped.
   Other highlights include the multi-award-winning Icelandic drama LIFE IN A FISHBOWL (Vonarstræti); critically acclaimed Swedish-Norwegian production UNDERDOG (Svenskjävel); Finnish comedy THE GRUMP (Mielensäpahoittaja); the follow-up to last year’s festival smash-hit (THE KEEPER OF LOST CAUSES) THE ABSENT ONE (Fasandræberne); the wry and humorous OUT OF NATURE (Mot nature); and Amanda Adolfsson’s longed for dreamy debut YOUNG SOPHIE BELL (Unga Sophie Bell).

DVD Releases
IT FOLLOWS  (not reviewed, but good reviews)
SEVENTH SON ✪✪✪  (Jeff Bridges, Julianne Moore) Click here for review

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