In the late 80s, Richard Thorncroft (Julian Barratt) was the most famous police detective on television, but fast-forward to the present day and he's balding, ungroomed and trying to convince himself that he is exactly where he needs to be in life with desperate daily positive affirmations. Fate does have one more adventure in store for the actor, however. A suspected serial killer named Paul Melly (Russell Tovey) has escaped from a secure unit at Darkmoor Hospital and is now taunting Isle of Man police that more will die unless he can speak to Detective Mindhorn. The police are well aware that Mindhorn is just a TV character, but they try their luck and enlist the help of the actor who plays him nonetheless. Unfortunately, Thorncroft turns out to be much less efficient than his onscreen persona, as much as he'd like to believe otherwise.
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Rufus Wright and Richard McCabe - Opening night after party for Broadway play The Audience, held at URBO restaurant - Arrivals. at URBO restaurant, - New York City, New York, United States - Sunday 8th March 2015
Julia Roberts is Julia Roberts - almost - in Notting Hill, a well-crafted romantic comedy from the geniuses behind Four Weddings and a Funeral.
The deceptively simple plot begins when uber-famous film star Anna Scott (Roberts) winds up in William's (Grant) book shop on Notting Hill, something of a British cross between a pre-Disney Times Square and a Moroccan street market. After William accidentally dumps orange juice down Anna's front, an on-again, off-again, on-again, off-again, on-again love affair blossoms.
Continue reading: Notting Hill Review
She's a bleeding heart radical who opposes the Iraq war and feels terrible about poor HIV-inflicted Kenyans. He's a stodgy establishment lackey working for the British High Commission who loves to mind his own business and tend to his gardens. Together, Tessa (Rachel Weisz) and Justin Quayle (Ralph Fiennes) uncover an insidious plot orchestrated by pharmaceutical conglomerates in Fernando Meirelles' The Constant Gardener, a hybrid of '70s-era thrillers like The Parallax View and this year's pro-U.N. fiasco The Interpreter. Adapted from John le Carré's novel, Meirelles' follow-up to his critically overpraised City of God is a concoction of paranoia-drenched conspiracy theories and white liberal guilt over Africa that purports to sympathize with the plight of impoverished Kenyans, but whose real agenda is the vilification of evil Western corporations and the celebration of Africa-loving white martyrs. Infested with mournful close-ups of smiling indigenous kids, Meirelles' film demands that we feel both sorrow over Africa's burgeoning AIDS crisis and fury over the superpowers' sinister refusal to truly help. Primarily, however, his film cares no more about Africa than do the story's evil villains at make-believe drug company FDH.Collaborating with his City of God cinematographer César Charlone, Meirellas once again fetishistically focuses on destitution and suffering, shooting his squalid Kenyan locations in grimy, slightly overexposed colors and with expressionistic camera angles, turning the beautiful landscape into a harsh pit of fluorescent yellows, rotting greens, stark blacks, and blooming whites. It's a phony-baloney (if striking) visual aesthetic that, when married to the director's rollercoaster-ish hand-held cinematography, provides a sense of both immediacy and self-conscious artistry. Yet no amount of stylistic showing-off can offset the ludicrousness of a love scene between Justin and Tessa - shot in downy hues, it looks like a L'Oreal commercial with excessive zooms - or the preposterousness of Jeffrey Caine's clunky, preachy script, which gussies up its straightforward mystery with numerous flashbacks but fails to confront its central issues of African poverty and corporate malfeasance with anything approaching a rational mind.
Continue reading: The Constant Gardener Review