Christine Haebler

Christine Haebler

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Hector And The Search For Happiness Review


Weak

With an approach so saccharine that it makes Eat Pray Love look like an edgy thriller, this heartwarming meaning-of-life odyssey is so relentlessly schmalzy that it quickly annoys anyone with even a tiny spark of cynicism inside them. And the annoying thing is that the filmmakers might have got away with it if there was any depth to the constant flow of uplifting sloganeering.

It starts in London, where the psychiatrist Hector (Simon Pegg) has a perfect life with his cheeky girlfriend Clara (Rosamund Pike). But the misery of his patients is rubbing off on him, so he decides to go in search of the true meaning of happiness. He starts by heading to Shanghai, where he meets a stinking-rich businessman (Stellan Skarsgard) and a sexy young woman (Zhao Ming). But is happiness found in money or sex? Silly question. Moving on, he checks out knowledge and wisdom in Tibet with a monk (Togo Igawa), then charity and power in Africa with an old pal (Barry Atsma), a drug kingpin (Jean Reno) and a gang of heavily armed rebels. Finally, he heads to Los Angeles to explore nostalgia with his old flame Agnes (Toni Collette), who helps him track down an award-winning self-help author (Christopher Plummer) who's known as "the Einstein of happiness".

Based on the book by Francois Lelord, the film is assembled along an outline of Hector's discoveries along the road, so what he discovers is actually written across the screen. But none of it is remotely enlightening, so why is he travelling to China, Tibet and Africa to discover these cheesy aphorisms, which appear on trite motivational posters in every office in the Western world? In addition to the on-screen captions, there are animated segments from Hector's travel diary, which are clearly drawn by a professional artist, not this hapless goofball who can't even remember where his pen is.

Continue reading: Hector And The Search For Happiness Review

Kitchen Party Review


Good
The quaint, indie, Canadian flipside of Can't Hardly Wait. This one stars Scott Speedman as the ringleader of a small group of just-graduated kids, wasting away the summer by hunting down booze and drugs and throwing a minuscule house party -- apparently in the middle of the afternoon.

Scott's parents are crazy about their living room -- one of those pristine model environments where the carpet has to vacuumed just so. Most of the party consists of keeping people out of said room, while Scott complains about his older brother (who eventually runs off with Scott's girlfriend), and getting the gang (none of the remainder are big (or even medium) names like Speedman) out of all manner of scrapes.

Continue reading: Kitchen Party Review

Hard Core Logo Review


Weak
Quentin Tarantino presents Hard Core Logo!

Tarantino's face is the largest one on the cover of the film, his name is bigger than the title of the movie... and frankly, he had nothing to do with it.

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Tail Lights Fade Review


OK
Well, it turns out it's a mad, mad, mad, mad Canada in this Cannonball Run/Smokey and the Bandit clone for the late 1990s. This time out, four twentysomethings are heading across the Great White North in order to clear out a barn full of pot before the cops find it, not to mention other nefarious types, backstabbing, and doublecrossing.

Continue reading: Tail Lights Fade Review

Christine Haebler

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Benedict Cumberbatch Interviews Tom Hiddleston, But Avoids The Taylor Swift Question

Benedict Cumberbatch Interviews Tom Hiddleston, But Avoids The Taylor Swift Question

One Marvel Universe star interviewed another, as part of Interview magazine's October edition.

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Christine Haebler Movies

Hector and the Search for Happiness Movie Review

Hector and the Search for Happiness Movie Review

With an approach so saccharine that it makes Eat Pray Love look like an edgy...

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