Adventure

Adventure

The Guardian

Ashton Kutcher in the swimming pool in The Guardian

  The career of Kevin Costner seems to have come and gone. After having a run of mad popular success with The Untouchables, Field of Dreams, Dances with Wolves, JFK and The Bodyguard (even the Robin Hood movie: Prince of Thieves did pretty well), he followed up with two epic failures. First Waterworld, which went …

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Casino Royale

Eva Green and Daniel Craig in Casino Royale

    You only live twice, or so they say. Casino Royale is the old Bond song incarnate. Because we have been here before. Not titularly – though we have, in the 1967 spoof made by a gaggle of writers and directors (John Huston, Billy Wilder, Woody Allen and Joseph Heller among them) who must …

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Kon-Tiki

Trouble down below in Kon-Tiki

  A festival regular in 2012, but scared from the wide-release ocean by the presence of a great white Life of Pi, the estimable Kon-Tiki finally gets a release two years later. Potential viewers include anyone interested in Thor Heyerdahl’s intriguing thesis – that the Polynesians had sailed to the islands from South America. But also …

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Flushed Away

Roddy the Rat holds on tight in Flushed Away

    Aardman, the animation house that gave us Wallace and Gromit, announced the ending of their collaboration with DreamWorks (Shrek) just as Flushed Away was released. And watching it, you can understand why. High on sentimentality and laden with backstory, it’s a DreamWorks movie with Aardman touches, rather than what Aardman probably hoped for …

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Night at the Museum

Ben Stiller and Robin Williams in Night at the Museum

    One of Disney’s old standbys is the perky live-action comedy, of the sort they used to put out on the 1960s, invariably starring Dean Jones and a gaggle of pesky kids, plus a cute animal or two. These movies were cute and zippy and had a gee-whizz wholesomeness that was easy to mock …

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Ghosts

Ai Qin Lin in Ghosts

    The British film-maker Nick Broomfield is well known for his documentaries made in the teeth of adversity, his working practice often being to get into someone’s face and then stay there while they duck and dive (see The Leader, His Driver and the Driver’s Wife, the 1991 doc on South African white supremacist Eugene …

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Eragon

Edward Speelers in Eragon

    Here be dragons. Dungeons and Dragons, to be more specific. Because that’s what this British Lord of the Rings knock-off most resembles. The 2000 film also heavily featured Jeremy Irons, who moved heaven and earth to save it but could not ultimately fight the sheer dead weight of the script and its deadly …

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Rabbit-Proof Fence

Everlyn Sampi in Rabbit-Proof Fence

  A movie for every day of the year – a good one     14 July   Nazi eugenics law passed, 1933 On this day in 1933, in Germany, the Law for the Prevention of Genetically Diseased Offspring (Gesetz zur Verhütung erbkranken Nachwuchses) was put onto the statute books. It allowed for the compulsory …

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The Hunter

Willem Dafoe takes aim in The Hunter

  A movie for every day of the year – a good one       9 July       Queen Victoria creates Australia, 1900 On this day in 1900, the world’s sixth largest country was created by the Empress of India, Queen Victoria. It had of course existed since it broke away from …

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