Iain Smith

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The A-Team Review

Jarringly over-edited with virtually no space for character or plot coherence, Carnahan's noisy movie strains to turn the corny 1980s TV show into something achingly hip and cool. But this only works in very brief moments.

Eight years after meeting during an action caper, four fast-thinking US Rangers are an unstoppable military team: organisational expert Hannibal (Neeson), charm-merchant Face (Cooper), tough-driving BA (Jackson) and riotously unpredictable Murdock (Copley). But when a CIA-sponsored raid goes wrong, they end up on the wrong side of the law, pursued by a slippery CIA operative (Wilson) and a hard-as-nails military officer (Biel) who has a history with Face. And they'll need to blast rather a lot of things to smithereens to prove their innocence.

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The Fountain Review

In the press notes for The Fountain, Darren Aronofsky (Pi, Requiem for a Dream) says that he didn't feel that many movies had been made about the quest for immortality. How's that? I can think of a pile off the top of my head: Tuck Everlasting, The Spring, the entire Highlander series... heck, it was the subject of two Star Trek movies (Insurrection and the infamous nadir of the series, The Final Frontier). What Aronofsky should have said is that there are no good movies about immortality, the original Highlander being the notable sole exception. Alas, while it's got ambition to spare, I'm sad to report that The Fountain doesn't much improve the record for "fountain of youth" flicks.

While the rock-'em-sock-'em trailer may have you thinking that The Fountain is cut from Highlander's action-packed, centuries-spanning mold, be advised this is far from the case. In fact, the only real action in the film occurs in the very first scene. The rest of the movie is a meditation on loss, grief, science, and "closure," more of a sci-fi think piece than the grand adventure you might be hoping for.

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Alexander Review

To paraphrase the obnoxious David Spade, I liked Alexander a lot... when it was called Troy.

In fact, Oliver Stone's overblown biopic detailing the global conquests of Alexander the Great (Colin Farrell) would make a nice bookend to Wolfgang Petersen's lopsided sword-and-sandal epic. One day you'll be able to tap Netflix for the two titles and combine them for a battle-worthy double feature. You'll only need an entire weekend to wrap it up.

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Children Of Men Review

Perhaps because of its bleak outlook, its lushly dark tones, or its often blunt criticism of the current world state, Alfonso Cuaron's fourth major film will have to fight just as hard as his two Spanish films to find an audience. The bearer of one the worst marketing and public relations campaigns in years, Children of Men could have been the wriggling stepson that Universal has made it out to be, but it turns out to be anything but.

It's 2027, and the youngest person in Britain (and the world), Baby Diego, has just been killed by a rabid fan; he was 18. Somewhere between 2006 and 2016, women started becoming infertile, causing mass miscarriages and major panics. Theo (Clive Owen) doesn't seem that concerned when we meet him, narrowly averting an explosion near a local café. He spends his time with his friend Jasper (a wily Michael Caine) who makes cannabis mixed with strawberry and tries to forget the family he once had. Julian (Julianne Moore), his ex-wife, has taken up with a pack of refugees that fight against the military state that has been active since London began understanding its grave future. When Julian stumbles upon a girl who miraculously is with child, she immediately kidnaps Theo and puts him in charge of getting the girl, Kee (Claire-Hope Ashitey), to a specialized group of the world's smartest people known as the Human Project.

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Seven Years in Tibet Review

Pitt stars as a reluctant Nazi who finds peace in, well, Tibet, in this sweeping epic about the holy kingdom and its own struggles against invaders. Seven Years only seems like two or three, though.
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