Friday, November 18, 2011

Pick O the Week - November 18

Just my luck to end up getting the pick the week that my film nemesis is released.  Unfortunately they've decided to split these movies into two parts (thank you Warner Brothers for starting that trend) which means we'll have to deal with this again very shortly but hopefully it will not be my week to pick films :)

In Theatres: There are quite a few great films which we've mentioned over the last few weeks that would be great alternatives to the offerings of this week.  La piel que habito was highly reviewed by many critics including CineCritical's own Matt (one of the rare 4s we've ever awarded).  And both Matt and I recommended George Clooney's directorial debut in The Ides of March earlier this month.  Still in theatres are slightly lighter options 50/50 and Moneyball.

At Home: There is a plethora of films available to you at home but one I have been looking forward to for some time, but which had eluded me until now is the Foo Fighters documentary Foo Fighter Back and Forth.  An official selection at the South by Southwest Film Festival, this film seeks to explore the rise of one the Foo Fighters from the ashes of Nirvana (those younger members of our audience often forget that Dave Grohl is one of the original members of the ill fated band).  Certainly a light doc-- and perhaps self aggrandizing at times--this one is great if you're a fan, and interesting from a semi-historical perspective if you are not.

On TV: Homeland starring Claire Danes and Mandy Patinkin follows the struggles of a war hero after being rescued from a prison in the Middle East and reunited with his family.  The twist is that things may not be as they appear to be and Carrie Anderson (Danes) is convinced that he's a mole.  Sometimes shocking, often earie and always very well paced, this new offering from Showtime is based on an Isreali miniseries entitled Hatufim.  What I like about this show is that it doesn't push the pro-US agenda too strongly, certainly there is that feeling of being a proud American but it does allow for a little more complexity that many films and politically themed media do not.

Retro Re-Watch: Since this week's picks are motivated simply by what I'm watching right now I'm going to suggest checking out is Roman Holiday.  Starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck this is a delightful little film that follows Hepburn's Princess Ann on her adventure around Rome after sneaking away from her responsibilities.  She ends up touring the city with Peck's news guy Joe Bradley (who finds her passed out in the city at night).  The film is charming and filled with a certain sense of wonder; it is Hepburn at her best.  In fact, she won an Oscar for this role.

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