Movie Reviews – from Nov 21 to Dec 12
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Movie Reviews – from Nov 21 to Dec 12

ODEON Cinema piazza Strozzi 2, tel. 055/295051 www.odeonfirenze.com   November 23, 9pm FIRE A highlight of the River to River Indian Film Festival and banned in India, Fire is the first film to confront lesbianism in a culture adamantly denying such a love could ever exist. Shabana

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Thu 21 Nov 2013 1:00 AM

ODEON Cinema

piazza Strozzi 2, tel. 055/295051

www.odeonfirenze.com

 

November 23, 9pm

FIRE

A highlight of the River to River Indian Film Festival and banned in India, Fire is the first film to confront lesbianism in a culture adamantly denying such a love could ever exist. Shabana Azmi shines as Radha Kapur in this taboo-breaking portrayal of contemporary India and the hidden desires that threaten to defy traditional expectations. In a barren, arranged marriage to an amateur swami who seeks enlightenment through celibacy, Radha’s life takes an irresistible turn when her beautiful young sister-in-law (Nandita Das as Sita) seeks to free herself from the confines of her own loveless marriage and into the supple embrace of Radha. ‘Audacious, yet sensitive, Fire may shock traditionalists but is the sort of film that ought to win Indian cinema a whole new audience’ (Empire).

 

BRITISH INSTITUTE of Florence

Lungarno Guicciardini 9

tel. 055/26778270

www.britishinstitute.it

 

November 27, 8pm

LANTANA

Mystery drama. The intertwined lives of four couples living in and around Sydney are central to this intriguing whodunnit. It is about secrets, real and imagined, and how they can poison relationships. Major AFI Award winner. ‘Stuns with writing, acting, direction’ (San Francisco Chronicle). ‘Haunting, powerfully acted, penetratingly written, it’s about people coming home—and not coming home—to their marriages’ (Boston Globe). ‘An astonishingly well acted film, so much so that it seems unfair to single out any of the performances. Mr. Lawrence’s camera sense is as sure and unobtrusive as his feel for acting. The movie just seems to happen, to grow out of the ground like a thorny plant, revealing the intricate intelligence of its design only in hindsight’ (New York Times).

 

December 4, 8pm

RABBIT-PROOF FENCE

Historical adventure drama. Government policy dictated that half-castes be separated from their families and be indentured as domestic servants. In 1931, three girls escape from the gulag and set off on a trek across the outback. True story. ‘A chillingly arrogant quasi-eugenic experiment, carried out in the name of Her Majesty the Queen until the early 1970s, is what is denounced by this heartfelt, though somewhat heavy-footed movie’ (The Guardian). ‘The spic-and-span wholesomeness of “Rabbit-Proof Fence” ultimately makes its sting all the sharper. Its portrait of people who see themselves as decent, self-righteously trying to eradicate another culture, has the impact of a swift, hard slap in the face’ (New York Times).

 

December 11, 8pm

WOLF CREEK

Horror. Stranded backpackers in the outback are given a helping hand by a local bushman who offers to fix their car but may have other ideas. Based on true events. ‘Swaggeringly nasty, self-assured piece of ordeal horror … This is the best Australian movie since Lantana, and deserves an audience outside the horror fanbase’ (The Guardian). ‘For all its vaunted freshness, Wolf Creek is ultimately just another exercise in woman-in-peril sadism that’s good for a few screams but has little to say’ (BBCi).

 

SPAZIO ALFIERI Cinema

Via dell’Ulivo, 6

www.spazioalfieri.it

 

November 27, 9:30pm

ACROSS THE UNIVERSE

Never mind the story line—there is a plot involving a relationship between (who else?) Jude and Lucy—Julie Taymor’s Beatles homage movie Across the Universe is an extended music video that is a riot of colour, invention and energy; and a joy from start to finish. With 33 Beatles songs performed by an array of artists, including the actors themselves as the framework, the background of the 1960s, Vietnam, and peace and love is hardly relevant. Kitsch, clichéd, superficial, corny and psychedelic, it is a way of remembering the 60s for those who were not there and would not have remembered them anyway even if they had been, especially those who did not inhale.

 

December 11, 9:30pm

SWEENEY TODD

‘How about a shave?’ Perfect Grand Guignol material for Tim Burton and his repertory company, Stephen Sondheim’s macabre and murderous musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street transports us to an immaculately recreated Victorian London. Barking mad serial slasher Benjamin Barker, alias Sweeney ‘I will have vengeance’ Todd executes one or two too many shaves somewhat closer than close and dispatches his victims with a chilling melodramatic flourish. Shades of Captain Jack Sparrow in Depp’s layered performance—more David Bowie than Keith Richards—are banished by his astonishingly good singing voice that intelligently, sensitively and wittily captures Sondheim’s memorable score. An irresistible feast of tasty meat pies washed down with buckets of blood. And Helena Bonham Carter.

 

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