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Caine plays an conductor in 'Youth', released in the UK on January 29th, and spoke a little about his preparation for the unusual part, which included conducting a real-life orchestra.
Sir Michael Caine has spoken about being taught how to conduct an orchestra as part of his role in forthcoming film Youth, which won two awards at the European Film Awards earlier in December.
82 year old Caine, who was recently voted by the British public as the country’s greatest living film actor, stars as composer Fred Ballinger alongside his best friend, played by Harvey Keitel. He was asked about his reaction to being asked to play the part of a classical music conductor, and his training for it.
Sir Michael Caine at the 28th European Film Awards in December 2015
Continue reading: Sir Michael Caine Talks About Conducting An Orchestra In 'Youth'
After becoming the most famous magicians in the world with their last tricks and exposing the wrongdoings of Arthur Tressler, it was obvious that as many people as they helped, they'd always upset a powerful few. One of those is Arthur's son, Walter Tressler.
Walter is on a mission to cause The Four Horsemen as much damage as possible. In order to stop Walter, the four magicians must pull off a stunt far bigger than their first.
With Isla Fisher pregant and unable to commit to the film Lizzy Caplan (Masters Of Sex) has been brought in to play the role of Lula. Other than Isla, all the lead cast from the first film will appear in the new film and Daniel Radcliffe will play the role of Arthurs son, a tech magnate.
After a long, varied career, Michael Caine was surprised when he heard that Oscar-winning Italian filmmaker Paolo Sorrentino (The Great Beauty) wanted him to star in his new film Youth.
"It was like having a script from another world," Caine laughs. "I was amazed that he'd heard of me! I'm well known in England and America, but in Italy? But my agent said he wrote it for me. So I asked Paolo, 'Did you really write this for me?' The director replied, 'I wrote it for two of you, but the other one was busy.' That put me in my place."
Set at a Swiss health resort, the film is an exploration of how it feels to grow older, and Caine didn't hesitate when scenes required him to appear wearing only a towel. "It's the only body I've got," he says matter-of-factly. "At least it was a reality. Young people should know: this is what's going to happen, do don't get too smart about it." Was he tempted to hit the gym before those scenes? "At my age getting in shape is a waste of time," he says. "What you see is what you get. No one expects me to look like Brad Pitt!"
Continue reading: Youth Was Like A Gift For Michael Caine
The 82 year-old actor has topped a list of iconic Brits compiled by ShortList magazine.
Veteran actor Michael Caine has been named Britain’s Greatest Living Movie Star by ShortList magazine. The actor appears on the cover of the new issue (out November 26th), alongside other iconic Brits. But despite being 82-years-old, Caine has said he has no plans to give up his career anytime soon.
Michael Caine has been named Britain’s Greatest Living Movie Star
Speaking to the magazine Caine said: “I’m always planning ahead. I’ve got plans for everything. You know, you’d think I’m going to live to 150. I always say to my kids, ‘don’t look backwards, you’ll fall over.’”
Continue reading: Michael Caine Named Britain's Greatest Living Movie Star
What happens when Christopher Nolan moves away from his usual thriller genre to make a sci-fi? 'Interstellar'; that's what.
Over the past 15 years, Christopher Nolan has proven himself as a master of intelligent filmmaking, generally sticking to the psychological thriller genre while mixing in action and brain-bending flourishes. And now with Interstellar he has left the confines of Earth's gravity to head into science-fiction for the first time.
Intriguingly, Nolan has still maintained his commitment to in-camera effects even in this genre, refusing to indulge in flashy digital trickery just because he can. Like his last few films, he has also shot portions of the film in Imax, massive screen imagery photographed on film, not digitally, which gives the entire movie an earthy texture that's intriguingly realistic. This also focusses even the most existential and scientific discussions squarely on the characters.
Continue reading: Interstellar Is A New Genre For Nolan
Taylor Swift is rumoured to be making a cameo appearance in the upcoming spy film, although conflicting rumours have emerged that say otherwise. So what's the deal?
Rumour has it that Taylor Swift will be making the leap on to the big screen in the upcoming British spy caper The Secret Service, with the country-tinged pop starlet apparently due to fill in one of the cameo appearances that are being dished out to famous faces such as David Beckham, Elton John and Adele. Although certain rumours suggest that the part is as good as hers, others claim that this is all bogus and Taylor hasn't even been approached by film bosses. So what gives?
Taylor Swift is tipped to play a cameo role in the spy film
A report from the UK's Daily Mirror states that Swift has landed the cameo role already, in which she will play a butt-kicking escapee of villainous Samuel L Jackson's character. The cameo appearance supposedly features her squaring up to the baddie after fleeing his lair and is one of many cameos lined up for the film, which has been described as being like a modern day version of James Bond (so Skyfall then). David Beckham is also being strongly linked with the role, as have Elton John and Adele, however it is Taylor who has given the first rebuttal and supposedly denied the rumours linking her with the role.
Will Goldenballs be providing another cameo?
David Beckham joining The Secret Service? Sounds about right, even if it’s only the film and not the U.S federal law enforcement agency. In fact, they both sound totally feasible to us. The English ex-footballer will be making his third film appearance alongside Colin Firth and Sir Michael Caine in the Matthew Vaughn-directed film, The Secret Service, if The Sun are to be believed.
A source said: "Becks was asked by Colin Firth if he'd like to be in the movie but he is yet to fully commit. He loves movies and fancies appearing on the big screen - but just as a one-off, not a full-time career." But Becks isn’t the only British star said to be in demand for this film; glamerous singer Elton John is said to be wanted for a fight scene. We would really like that to happen, please. And if it does, it’s due to start shooting this autumn.
Since Sir David quit football, he’s been fulfilling an ambassadorial role for the Chinese Football Association, as well as travelling the globe for sports initiatives and charitable causes. He retired from the game while playing for the recently minted Paris Saint Germain, whose supporters recognised his commitment to the sport by performing a standing ovation at his last game.
Continue reading: Come On Becks, It's Time To Serve Your Country Again
Mystery crime thriller receives varied reviews from critics as it hits movie theatres today.
Magical mystery thriller Now You See Me receives a flood of favourable and not so favourable reviews as it is released in US movie theatres today (May 31st 2013).
With a star-studded ensemble cast led by Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher, Dave Franco, Mélanie Laurent, Morgan Freemanand Michael Caine, it's no wonder 'Now You See Me' has turned out to be a massive hit with many critics. Living up to its expectations, this Louis Leterrier directed movie has been described as 'A grandiose, far-fetched, somewhat tongue-in-cheek caper thriller' by Vulture and Television Without Pity said 'the tricks were really fantastic' and 'overall, it was an enjoyable time'.
On the other hand, many were unimpressed, with Complex stating rather bluntly, 'the illusion of its awesomeness vanishes to reveal its greatest trick yet: stealing your money' and CTV's Canada AM suggesting that one should 'wrap it in cellophane, lock it in a box and hide it under the bed'. Either way, if you like glamour, mystery and mischief then it's a great film to go and see and with such an excellent cast, just how bad can it possibly be?
Continue reading: 'Now You See Me' Receives Mixed Reviews From Critics On US Release
It was much too much of an early morning for sleepy Morgan Freeman who couldn't keep his eyes open during a FOX interview.
The poor Oscar-winning movie veteran, who's currently approaching his 76th birthday, fought to stay conscious as he rested his eyes while his co-star talked about the new magic flick. He is seen blinking a few times as his head begins to nod before snapping his eyes open again and attempting to focus. However, after a clip from the movie is played while Caine talks about the illusions, Freeman's chin is resting on his chest in what looks like a deepening slumber. Determined as he is, though, he manages to shake himself awake before the snoring began.
Neither Caine nor the FOX affiliate Q13 presenters seemed to notice at the time though, or, if they did, decided to ignore the slightly awkward situation anyway. Freeman later told People.com, 'I wasn't actually sleeping. I'm a beta tester for Google Eyelids. I was merely updating my Facebook page', while Fox noted on its website, 'Maybe he was up too late partying.' Still, at least it wasn't a solo interview; that might not have been as easy to brush off.
Continue reading: Just Resting Me Eyes! Morgan Freeman Drifts Off In Live Interview
'The Italian Job' star Michael Caine is snapped arriving at the Miami International Airport. He is followed by paparazzi as he walks through an inside parking lot and doesn't hide his annoyance for the flashing cameras.
He’d have to prise him away from Tim Burton’s clutches, of course, but we reckon a Tarantino and Depp collaboration would be pretty awesome. The pair have apparently chatted about it in the past, so perhaps it’s not just a movie-lover’s pipe dream, after all? “We would love to work together,” Tarantino told talk show host Charlie Rose.
“We've talked about it for years. Not that we get together and talk about it for years, but from time to time. We're obviously fans of each other. It just needs to be the right character. I just need to write the right character that I think Johnny would be the right guy to do it with. And if he agrees, then we'll do it. And then it'll be magical. I haven't written the perfect character for Johnny Depp as of yet. Maybe someday I will, maybe someday I won't. We'll see.”
Continue reading: Yes Please! Quentin Tarantino Wants To Work With Johnny Depp
The wait is over. The Dark Knight Rises is finally available on DVD, and it's already flying off the shelves. The Ultraviolet Digital Copy is currently No.1 on Amazon.com's bestseller list, while The Dark Knight Trilogy (Batman Begins/The Dark Knight/The Dark Knight Rises) sits at No.2.
Christopher Nolan's final Batman movie grossed over $1.08 billion worldwide, while receiving a slew of positive reviews. It's currently the seventh highest grossing film of all time and the second highest grossing film of 2012. The film boasted an all-star cast including Christian Bale, Gary Oldman, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Morgan Freeman and British star Michael Caine, who recently spoke to the Huffington Post about his Oscars chances. The actor - who plays Bruce Wayne's butler Alfred - already has two Best Supporting Actor gongs, though could he get a nomination in 2013? "You don't think about getting nominated. They either do it or you don't. There's nothing you could do. I'm looking for people I could pay off, but I can't find any. [Laughs] So you just wait," he joked. It's unlikely the movie itself will compete for Best Picture, though the likes of Caine could land a nomination. He added, "You just leave it in the lap of the members. I'm one of the members, so I'm voting for me. I'll tell you that."
Caine recently completed shooting the forthcoming thriller Now You See Me, about FBI agents who track down a team of illusionists who pull off bank heists during their performances. The film hits cinemas in the U.S. on June 7, 2012.
Continue reading: The Dark Knight Rises DVD Hits Stores: But Can The Movie Win An Oscar?
Kenneth Branagh has received his knighthood from the Queen at Buckingham Palace for services to drama and the community of Northern Ireland. The Oscar-nominated actor, director and screenwriter, is best known for his Shakespearean works though most recently played Swedish detective Wallander in the BBC series of the same name.
Sir Kenneth joins the likes of Sir Michael Caine, Sir Patrick Stewart, Sir Ben Kingsley and Sir Laurence Olivier in becoming a thespian knight. Branagh - who recently starred in the Marilyn Monroe movie My Week With Marilyn - told Sky News that he felt "humble, elated and incredibly lucky," to have received the award, adding, "When I was a kid I dreamed of pulling on a shirt for the Northern Ireland football team. I could only imagine how proud you might feel. Today it feels like they just gave me the shirt and my heart's fit to burst." Branagh spent his early years in Northern Ireland though moved to Reading with his family at the age of nine.
In today's ceremony, two British servicemen were awarded the Military Cross for bravery. Corporal Carl Taylor from Birmingham ran 80 feet across open ground under Taliban fire to rescue three young Afghan children. Bombardier Mark Carpenter of the Royal Artillery was also honoured, as were four fire-fighters from Nottinghamshire who received the Queen's Gallantry Medal for acts of bravery.
Continue reading: Kenneth Branagh? That's Sir Kenneth Branagh To You!
Vidal Sassoon, the legendary hairstylist who died in May aged 84, was remembered in a memorial service at St Paul's Cathedral on Friday (October 12, 2012). Sassoon's friends and family, including Michael Caine, Nicky Clarke, John Frieda and artist Anish Kapoor gathered at the event to celebrate his extraordinary life.
Born in London in 1928, Sassoon's mother Betty was forced to put him and his brother in an orphanage, visiting them once a month. However, it was Betty who introduced a young Vidal to Adolph Cohen, the owner of a local hair salon, where he impressed as a shampoo boy. The rest, as they say, is history and Sassoon became the world's most famous and influential hairdresser. After fighting for the Israeli army in 1948, he returned to London and recreated the classic bob, which encapsulated the spirit of the Swinging Sixties. He also created Mia Farrow's classic pixie-cut for the movie Rosemary's Baby - a style since favoured by the likes of Emma Watson, Natalie Portman and Annie Lennox. Sassoon's son Elan gave a touching but funny speech at the memorial ceremony, insisting, "Dad wouldn't want me to be too serious."
A new photography exhibition titled 'Vidal Sassoon: How One Man Changed The World With A Pair Of Scissors' by Michael Gordon runs at Somerset House until October 28, 2012..
Sean Anderson has moved back in with his mother, after embarking on the adventure of a lifetime with his uncle, in which they discovered a lost world at the centre of the earth. Now, his mum has a new boyfriend, called Hank.
After Sean's grandfather goes missing, Sean tries to track him down but to no avail. The teen suspects that his grandfather is on the hunt again for a mysterious island and a few days later, his suspicions are confirmed when he gets a strange fax that repeats the same words over and over, as well as strange radio signals. Wishing to uncover the truth Sean shares these findings with his uncle who dismisses them as the work of a lunatic but Sean is adamant that it is his grandfather, who has finally found the island after years of searching.
Sean decides to go after his grandfather and persuades Hank to join him, which he does with great reluctance. After looking up the coordinates of the island, they travel to a nearby port, where they persuade a local man and his pretty daughter to fly them to the island. Despite their protests that there is no island, they agree to help Sean and Hank.
Tragedy soon strikes when Sean, Hank and the pretty girl Kailani are stuck on the mysterious island, which is filled with all sorts of exotic and dangerous animals. And there appears to be no way off...
Journey 2: The Mysterious Island is the sequel to the 2008 film, Journey To The Center Of The Earth, which starred Brendan Fraser and Josh Hutcherson, who reprises his role in this film.
Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Josh Hutcherson, Vanessa Hudgens, Luis Guzman, Michael Caine, Kristin Davis and Michael Beasley
Global daredevil Axelrod (Izzard) has challenged the world's fastest cars to a three-part grand prix, so rally champ McQueen (Wilson) heads to Tokyo with his pal Mater (Larry) to take on rival F1 racer Francesco (Turturro). But Mater obliviously stumbles into a sinister international espionage operation, mistaken for a spy by British agents Finn and Holly (Caine and Mortimer). As the competition continues to the Italian Riviera and London, McQueen frets that he has insulted Mater. But he's actually entangled in a mission to stop a mysterious villain from blowing up the racers.
Continue reading: Cars 2 Review
Michael Caine, Palladium, Shakira and Wizard Of Oz - Sir Michael Caine and wife Shakira Baksh London, England - 'The Wizard of Oz' press night held at the Palladium Theatre - Arrivals. Tuesday 1st March 2011
Gnomeo (voiced by McAvoy), son of Lady Bluebury (Smith), is the leader of the blue Montague garden. Accompanied by his sidekick Benny (Lucas), Gnomeo engages in tit-for-tat warfare with the red Capulets next door. Then he meets Juliet (Blunt), daughter of Lord Redbrick (Caine), and it's love at first sight. Which sends red warrior Tybalt (Statham) into a rage. As they plot a secret life together, Gnomeo and Juliet are assisted by Juliet's frog friend Nanette (Jensen) and the garden flamingo Featherstone (Cummings). But can these star-crossed lovers find happiness?
Continue reading: Gnomeo & Juliet Review
Some gardens just wouldn't be complete without the addition of a garden gnome or two. The gardens on Verona Drive are no exception; the owners of the houses are extremely fond of their little hat wearing friends. What the human residents don't realise is that when all's quiet and there are no humans around, their garden comes to life!
Continue: Gnomeo & Juliet Trailer
We have an excellent featurette about Chris Nolan's (The Dark Knight, Batman Begins, Momento) latest movie Inception. In the video both Chris Nolan, the director, and Leonardo Dicaprio (Shutter Island, The Departed, Gangs of New York), plays Dom Cobb the lead role, are interviewed about making the film, it's many locations in different countries around the world, the challenges of transferring the dreams of a human mind to the cinema screen and how it was working with each other.
Continue: Inception Feature Trailer
Harry Brown (Caine) lives on a grim London estate where his quiet life is constantly interrupted by a gang of violent teens. As his wife lies dying in hospital, his best pal (Bradley) is the target of these thugs' abuse. And the detectives (Mortimer and Creed-Miles) looking into the situation don't seem to be doing anything about it. Pushed into a corner, Harry defends himself with his long-suppressed military training, then becomes more aggressive about cleaning up the streets himself.
Continue reading: Harry Brown Review
But there is another lost soul at the old folks home, ten-year-old Edward (Bill Milner), angry at having to give up his room to the dying tenants. His Mum (Anne-Marie Duff) and Dad (David Morrissey) run the facility out of their home in an English seaside town. The recent resident of Edward's room has just died and Clarence has now arrived to take the dead man's place. Edward is obsessed with death and ghosts. When asked why he is so morbid, Edward shouts back, "Because I live here!"
Continue reading: Is Anybody There? Review
When an honest-to-goodness scallywag named Milo Tindle (Jude Law), an Italian hairdresser with designs on acting, comes to Wyke's estate announcing his plans to marry Wyke's estranged wife, the author seems pleased to have an opponent than enraged by the open deceit. And that in a nutshell is how this cat-and-mouse whirligig operates: two men more excited about the idea of a nemesis than their money or their beautiful mistress respectively.
Continue reading: Sleuth (2007) Review
Prestige refers to the third act of a magic trick, the point when the performer reveals a sleight of hand before a baffled crowd. Finding the perfect prestige is what drives turn-of-the-century magicians Robert Angier (Hugh Jackman) and Alfred Borden (Christian Bale).
Continue reading: The Prestige Review
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.
Continue reading: Children Of Men Review
Case in point: Charles Dickens, who narrates this film himself, is played by -- get this -- Gonzo. He's not a writer, he's a lamplighter who takes a break from his work to tell the story of Ebenezer Scrooge (Michael Caine), the famous miser who (in this version) wants to give Bob Crachit (played by Kermit the Frog) a mere half-hour off for Christmas and is the subject of jokes at local gatherings. People and puppets mix at random here. Unlike in films like The Muppet Movie, where the puppets are on a crusade to reach Hollywood and the humans encompass only characters they encounter on the way, The Muppet Christmas Carol blends both together. It's a little freaky to see them all sitting together -- in British period dress, too -- around the Christmas dinner table.
Continue reading: The Muppet Christmas Carol Review
And guess what: They haven't improved with age.
Continue reading: Austin Powers In Goldmember Review
The title refers to Dave Spritz (Nicolas Cage), chief weather forecaster for Chicago's most popular morning news program. Despite his high-profile position - and self-described light work week - life tends to maneuver against Spritz when he's away from the office. He's divorced, and all attempts to reconcile with his spouse (Hope Davis) are hitting dead ends. His listless and overweight daughter Shelly (Gemmenne de la Peña) earns a cruel nickname at school because her clothes are too tight. His son Mike (Nicholas Hoult) abuses marijuana, then fends off advances from his drug counselor, a sexual predator.
Continue reading: The Weather Man Review
The franchise was left for dead, revived only by speculation of an absurd Batman vs. Superman movie in 2002. Most moviegoers seem to have bid good riddance to the series, which in its later years was notable only for generating more discussion about the nipples on the batsuit than anything else.
Continue reading: Batman Begins Review
The film's setup is pretty staid: Caine's Charlie Croker is straight outta prison, and he's right back at the crime game the moment he's released. Thanks to guidance from boss Bridger (Noel Coward, appearing primarily in films given to Caine), the job is meticulously planned and staffed: Ultimately the gig is to cause a giant traffic jam in the city of Turin, steal $4 million in gold from an armored car, and escape using clever non-roadway surfaces so the cops can't follow them.
Continue reading: The Italian Job (1969) Review
Continue reading: Noises Off! Review
I didn't even know how to pronounce the title. It could've been "The cider house-rules," meaning "This is the cider house, and these are the rules." Or it could've been "The cider house rules!" meaning "That cider house is damn cool!"
Continue reading: The Cider House Rules Review
As portrayed in Quills, based on the Obie Award-winning play by Doug Wright, the Marquis is an earthy, dirty, jolly old soul with the unquenchable desire to write his perverse dreams on paper. He's the unflinching id in the face of mediocrity and tolerance, the middle finger held like a candle to the powerful hypocrites, and the loud fart in the house of God, an affront to restrictive dogma.
Continue reading: Quills Review
Allen plays his neurotic self to perfection, this time a hypochondriac TV executive and ex-husband of Hannah (Farrow). Michael Caine, though, steals the show as Hannah's current husband who falls in love with sister Lee (Hershey), herself living with an aging, pedantic shut-in (Max von Sydow).
Continue reading: Hannah And Her Sisters Review
Palmer is a reluctant agent, serving as a spy in lieu of spending time behind bars for some unknown crime. This time out, he's sent to East Berlin (remember when there was an East Berlin?) to retrieve a defecting Russian general, by devising a phony funeral. As a former crook, Palmer is unconventional. He talks back to his bosses, he doublecrosses his partners, and he drinks Lowenbrau instead of martinis.
Continue reading: Funeral In Berlin Review
Jack (Michael Caine) has recently died, leaving in his wake a widow, two children, and three close friends. His last wish is that lifelong companions Vic (Tom Courtenay), Lenny (David Hemmings), and Ray (Bob Hoskins) throw him out to sea at the honeymoon spot he shared with wife Amy (Helen Mirren). His son, Vince (Ray Winstone), joins them.
Continue reading: Last Orders Review
Continue reading: Dressed To Kill Review
Miss Congeniality starts out with Gracie as a New Jersey kid kicking ass on the playground and getting the obligatory "ugly duckling" bit when she slugs a guy to protect a potential boyfriend -- only to be shunned because she was too tomboyish. Of course, the ugly duckling grows up to be an adult tomboy (though a dead sexy one at that). The portrayal is stereotypical: frumpy hair, two dates to her name, a punching bag, and a penchant for pints of Ben and Jerry's. To her credit, Sandra Bullock pulls off the deal pretty well, but how she can live with herself after playing such an odious role is beyond me. (She gets paid a lot of money, that's how. -Ed.)
Continue reading: Miss Congeniality Review
Films of this nature usually need a gruff, salt-of-the-earth type to provide hard-earned wisdom, and here it's the Lair family's elder statesman, Henry (Michael Caine), an ailing archaeologist who despairs at how little fun that his grandson, Jason (Josh Lucas) is letting his own boy, Zach (Jonah Bobo), have in life. Jason is an uptight banker type who's basically raising Zach alone after his wife absconded to Nepal (women, right?), leaving the business of taking care of Henry to the live-in Danish nurse, Katrina (Glenne Headly). On the eve of Henry's impending death - which he's able to foretell with preternatural accuracy - the bombshell dropped in their laps is the arrival of the family's missing link, Turner (Christopher Walken), Henry's son and Jason's father (never mind that Walken is only 10 years younger than Caine and looks even closer to him in age), who wants to make up for his wasted decades of crime, addiction and familial neglect.
Continue reading: Around The Bend Review
Joining their ranks is director Phillip Noyce, another director who has released two films in the same year, though he's the only one, in my opinion, who might find himself competing against his own film come awards season.
Continue reading: The Quiet American Review
The eye-rolling setup gives us a banker (Keaton), who is sent off to Europe to check up on a film production his bank is backing. (Caine is the star of this film within a film.) Barely a day passes before a government official gets shot, and wouldn't you know it, Keaton is holding the rifle like a patsy. He goes on the run, with the crooks and the corrupt cops all after him. Keaton goes to outrageous lengths -- we're talking costumes, we're talking hiding in a vat of grease -- to evade capture, and eventually he hooks up with Caine and another film employee (Judith Godrèche, the requisite no-name femme fatale) to prove his innocence and out the real killers.
Continue reading: Quicksand Review
But the problem is not the actress's performances. Sheadded bite and ironic melodiousness to last year's slapdash, self-destructing"TheStepford Wives," and she keeps the newself-aware, big-screen version of "Bewitched" afloat with herdelightful spark of perky naivete as a witch trying to live a mortal life.She has a deftly silly sense of comedic balance and timing.
The problem is, when she's just looking to have some funbetween dramatic roles, the girl can't pick a script.
Like "The Stepford Wives," this new comedy isa mess at the screenplay level. It changes mood, direction and (like "Wives")the rules of its own reality in every other scene. The plot is sloppy andstructurally unsound. Fictional characters from the original "Bewitched"come to life in single scenes for no explored reason ("The Daily Show's"Steve Carell is bloody awful as queeny Uncle Arthur) -- and this happenseven though the bulk of the meta-cinema plot takes place in real-worldHollywood. You see, Kidman plays an actual witch who becomes an actressand gets cast as TV sorceress Samantha Stevens in a network remake of thetitular 1960s sitcom.
Continue reading: Bewitched Review
Returning to the dark roots of the character, half themovie takes place before the stoic young billionaire even dons the now-bulletproofBatsuit, which Wayne eventually fashions from experimental body-armor builtby Wayne Industries, the war-profiteering conglomerate once owned by hismore altruistic late father.
Played with portentous, anguished magnetism by ChristianBale ("TheMachinist," "AmericanPsycho"), and still haunted by his parents'murder when he was a child, Wayne begins the film the last place Batmanfans would expect -- lost to the world in a Chinese prison after disappearingfrom a crime-gripped Gotham City. But he is sprung from this hoosegow bya shadowy ninja organization with a noble yet unrelenting master (LiamNeeson), who trains Wayne to channel his anger and defeat opponents withsilent deftness and dexterity in beautifully photographed scenes (thinkswordfights on Tibetan glaciers) that pay homage to traditions of the samuraigenre.
Then a staggering betrayal puts Wayne on a path back toGotham -- a vast industrial metropolis in the throes of a modern Depressionand in the grips of the mafia -- with a determination to "turn fearon those who prey on the fearful." Bale and Nolan make their Batmanalmost like a slasher-movie stalker in the eyes of the city's villains,and you feel their panic as he attacks from the shadows or strings a thugupside-down off the edge of a building to interrogate him for informationin a chillingly gravelly voice.
Continue reading: Batman Begins Review
"Last Orders" is a humorous and human, intelligent and emotional movie about the ups and downs of lifelong friendship and about living long-term with decisions, mistakes and regrets of youth. It's exactly the kind of movie adults are wishing for when they complain nobody makes movies for adults anymore -- and it's a simple but wonderful example of how good grown-up movies can be.
Based on a Booker Prize-winning novel by Graham Swift, half the film stars Bob Hoskins, Tom Courtenay and David Hemmings as three old pub pals on an afternoon's road trip to take a fourth buddy's ashes to the sea at a low-end English resort. The other half takes place in flashbacks that establish the history of this foursome who saw each other through 50 years of workaday trials, including war, love, parenthood, financial woes, marital woes and more.
Michael Caine takes center stage in these flashbacks as the fourth friend who passed away before the film began -- a butcher named Jack who always tried to remain jolly in the face of life's petty and not-so-petty adversities. Married too young due to a pregnancy (in an even further-back flashback) -- but to a girl he absolutely loved (played in her graying years by the wonderful Helen Mirren) -- Jack always kept his chin up, even as his butcher shop struggled and his son Vince grew resentful over family secrets that made him feel like an outsider.
Continue reading: Last Orders Review
Director Philip Kaufman establishes the nebulously erotic atmosphere of "Quills," a fictional film about the Marquis de Sade, with an opening scene in which a pretty aristocrat, shown on screen in some kind of ecstasy, is described by Sade (in a voice-over) as a woman with a sexual appetite for torture.
His voice slithers as he relates how she one day "found herself in the arms of a man whose skill in pain exceeded even her own" as the camera focuses on two giant, dirty hands coarsely roaming her neck and shoulders while she shivers in fear. The camera pulls back to reveal that the woman is standing before the gallows, about to become the eighth or ninth severed head to roll into a basket below as a crowd of rowdy peasants cheers on. (This is 18th Century France, after all.)
The Marquis' narration drips (like blood from the blade of the gallows) with a kind of odious sensuality and pricks at the viewer's darker side with a twisted sense of humor that carries throughout this engrossing, seductive, and at times unsavory film.
Continue reading: Quills Review
Emotionally and politically complex beyond what most filmmakers would dare attempt -- and transporting in a way that vividly recreates the tastes, the smells, the very character of 1950s Vietnam -- "The Quiet American" is a pungent, powerful, psychologically spellbinding film about a aged British reporter caught up in a love triangle and in the multifaceted intrigue that led the country into two decades of war.
Michael Caine, in what is arguably the most potent, unforgettable and instinctive performance of his busy career, stars as Thomas Fowler, a disillusioned London Times reporter whose only remaining passions are his attachment to life in Vietnam and his love for his beautiful, fragile young mistress named Phuong (Hai Yen), a former taxi dancer at a Saigon nightclub.
After years of skating by on occasional submissions to his newspaper, Fowler is trying to avoid being recalled to England, by returning to the front lines of the communist uprising, when he meets Alden Pyle (Brendan Fraser), an idealistic aid worker fresh from America who befriends Fowler but falls in love with Phuong.
Continue reading: The Quiet American Review
Michael Caine is in the midst of a career Renaissance, giving some of his all-time best performances in the last few years ("Little Voice," "Quills," "The Quiet American"). But while he continues this streak in "The Statement," the movie doesn't rise to his level.
A dramatic thriller that follows prosecutors and assassins hot on the trail of an aging Vichy war criminal played by Caine, it's a film with scads of potential for tension and chills that seems to go wrong in dozens of little ways from the casting to the camera work to the conclusion.
While historical films set in other countries usually work when characters speak English, the entirely British cast of this comparatively modern-day film (set in 1992) seems out of place in its story of a French prosecutor (Tilda Swinton) and a French army colonel (Jeremy Northam) hunting a French World War II officer who is wanted for crimes against humanity. And it doesn't help that, despite being played by talented actors, the pursuers are dry, uninteresting characters with a single distinguishing personality trait between them -- Swinton's tendency to come off like a little dog snapping at the heels of those conspiring to hide her quarry.
Continue reading: The Statement Review
Date of birth
14th March, 1933
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