Friday, April 13, 2012

Pick O' the Week - April 13

Another Friday has arrived, but it is Friday the Thirteenth! And rest easy, CineCritical has an underdeveloped taste for horror films. Last week saw the re-release of James Cameron's creation Titanic 3D. I saw it when I was in high school - 14 and a half years ago, when I was 14 - and I was fairly underwhelmed by it. It was one of the first Oscars ceremony I truly cared about - and L.A. Confidential lost out on a much deserved trophy. This week we see the release of The Cabin in the Woods (penned by Joss Whedon) and The Three Stooges, directed by the Farrelly brothers (known for Me, Myself & Irene (2000) and Shallow Hal (2001)). The second weekend of April last year saw the release of the much anticipated Hanna, but April has traditionally been a wasteland for criminally disappointing films.

In Theatres: If you have not seen Canada's Oscar-nominee Monsieur Lazhar (Best Foreign Language Film), go and see it now... while it is still in theatres! It is a fantastic film (with a slightly less than inspiring anticlimax) that won six Genie Awards (Canadian Oscars) for its story of an Algerian refugee who takes over a grade six class after a teacher hangs herself in the classroom. As a teacher, the film hit a nerve with its honest portrayal of the student/teacher relationship. See my review here.

At Home: In 2010 a small Australian animated film shook me emotionally. Mary and Max (2009), a black and white claymation story about a lonely eight year old Australian girl and a morbidly obese middle-aged man in New York City become penpals in the 1970s. Their relationship , as inappropriate as it sounds on the surface, helps each to overcome obstacles and Adam Elliot's story is beautifully touching and heartfelt. The film, which stars the voices of Toni Collette and Philip Seymour Hoffman, is available on Netflix.

On TV: Yes, Game of Thrones and Mad Men are back for their second and fifth seasons, respectively. And they are back with a vengeance. But so is another show... AMC's The Killing, starring Mireille Enos. The show angered a lot of viewers in its debut season when Rosie Larson's murder was left unsolved, but the series is back with its brooding characters and rain, lots of rain. The plot is just as riveting as ever and it was stupid for any viewer to expect a series to give you what you expected! The first two episodes were available for free on iTunes, but you can still find the Season One Recap.

Retro Re-watch: As I said earlier, L.A. Confidential should have won the Oscar in 1997. Curtis Hanson directed this neo-noir, based on James Ellroy's 1990 novel, and it has been called one of the best noirs ever filmed. Kim Basinger won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, for her career-best performance, and the film introduced the world to Guy Pearce and Russell Crowe. Set in the 1950s, the film focuses on the blurred line between Hollywood and police corruption.

No comments:

Post a Comment