DVD/Blu-ray/Digital Reviews - 16 March 2009-03-16


Andrea Riseborough in The Devil's Whore

A possible spoiler in this picture of Andrea Riseborough in The Devil's Whore

Ratings on the UK system (ie U=universal, PG=parental guidance, 12, 15 and 18 are self-explanatory, E=excempt)

 

The Devil’s Whore (Lionsgate, cert 15)

Having played Mrs T, Angela Riseborough is once more an iron lady in a proto-feminist English Civil War drama series laced with death and lashings of bodice ripping.

 The Devil’s Whore aka The Devil’s Mistress – at Amazon

 

How To Lose Friends and Alienate People (Paramount, cert 15)

Another gold star for Shaun Pegg, as a gauche Brit git in NY journalism in a version of Toby Young’s comic autobiog heavy on the slapstick, easy on the barbs.

How to Lose Friends and Alienate People – at Amazon

 

W. (Lionsgate, cert 15)

Josh Brolin is good ol’ boy George W. Bush in a headline-hopping biopic saved by great performances. From Oliver Stone, director of JFK, oddly sympathetic.

W. – at Amazon

 

 

Elegy (EV, cert 15)

Randy prof Ben Kingsley falls for sexy student Penelope Cruz in a spare, sexy adaptation of Philip Roth’s The Dying Animal missing the authorial voice.

Elegy – at Amazon

 

 

War, Inc. (Lionsgate, cert 15)

John Cusack co-wrote/stars as a political hitman in a Strangelove satire on US foreign policy in ‘Turaqistan” that’s less than the sum of its considerable parts.

War, Inc. – at Amazon

 

 

The Duchess (Pathe, cert 12)

Ye olde wiggy Gainsborough drama born again via Keira Knightley, as the feisty duchess locked in a loveless threeway marriage. Pretty but pretty vacant too.

The Duchess – at Amazon

 

 

Strawberry and Chocolate (Mr Bongo, cert 18)

From Cuba’s great Tomas Gutierrez Alea, a slight if popular 1994 drama about a gay liberal man and his Educating Rita friendship with a straight communist.

Strawberry and Chocolate – at Amazon

 

 

Space Buddies (Disney, cert U)

Five cute golden labrador pups go into space in Disney’s latest instalment of the Air Bud series. Squeaky scrapes, the odd fart joke – for bedwetters only.

Space Buddies – at Amazon

 

After… (Optimum, cert 15)

Thrill-seeking urban explorers in the Moscow subways get more extreme thrills than they bargained for. A character-free trudge through horror cliche.

After… – at Amazon

 

 

Smother (Optimum, cert 15)

Nowadays only playing annoying old harpies, Diane Keaton is the titular (S)mother, squatting with son Dax Shepard and wife Liv Tyler. A comedy, apparently.

Smother – at Amazon

 

 

88 Minutes (Warner, cert 15)

Huffing as he goes, Al Pacino plays the forensic psychiatrist given just 88 minutes to live by a grudge-wielding con. A generous amount of time by any measure.

88 Minutes – at Amazon

 

 

Easy Virtue (Pathe, cert PG)

Noel Coward’s play about flappy American Jessica Biel being bullied by ghastly Brit toffs is the latest clinker from the new Ealing Studios. Frightfully frightful.

Easy Virtue – at Amazon

 

 

 

© Steve Morrissey 2009