I hope everyone has managed to contain their enthusiasm this week. I hope the weight of expectation hasn’t proven too heavy as you went about your week safe in the knowledge that this weekend, after all the waiting, after the weeks, nay months of expectation, the comedy double bill of the century was finally upon us.
Yes folks, it’s finally here, that weekend you had circled in your diary since before you can remember, it’s the weekend where both Keith Lemon: The Film and The Three Stooges are released into the world.
I imagine my rather poor attempt at cynical humour there wasn’t lost on anyone, but perhaps I shouldn’t be so quick to judge. One should never judge a cinematic book by its cover and these two movies could both be comedy gold for all we know. In the words of Principal Seymour Skinner….prove me wrong kids, prove me wrong.
Last week’s big winner was Pixar’s Brave which built on its previous strong opening weeks in Scotland and Ireland to move comfortably up into top spot. It hasn’t perhaps performed as well as previous Pixar efforts, and has certainly fallen well short of Ice Age 4′s takings at a similar stage of its release, but nevertheless it will be pleasing to the studio heads to see Brave doing solid if perhaps not remarkable business. Coming in a close second is Bourne Legacy which had a decent opening weekend and while not setting the world alight, looks set to at least justify the decision to continue with the Bourne franchise.
As well as The Three Stooges and Keith Lemon, also out this week is IRA drama Shadow Dancer, revealing documentary The Imposter and cult American comedy Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie.
If you want to check to see if any of these films are playing near you, you can visit Find Any Film and they’ll be able to help.
The Imposter *Pick of the Week*
An intriguing documentary looking at the case of Nicholas Barclay, an American boy who was kidnapped and missing for several years before seemingly returning to Texas from captivity in Spain with tales of torture and abuse. The problem was, the boy who returned was actually French impersonator Frederic Bourdin who was seven years older than Nicholas, spoke with a strange accent and possessed differently coloured eyes and hair to the missing boy. The truth was eventually unearthed by a private investigator and this documentary fuses interviews and reconstructions to look at how Bourdin pulled it off, why the family believed it and whether they knew more about the abduction than they let on. It’s been receiving some great reviews and looks to be a fascinating and gripping documentary.
You can read Jamie Neish’s review here.
The Three Stooges
Larry, Curly and Moe are back courtesy of the erstwhile Farrelly brothers who are out to bring the anarchic slapstick of the Stooges to a new generation. It remains to be seen whether there is still a market for this very specific brand of comedy and whether it can be successfully translated into a modern-day comedy movie. Unfortunately, early reviews seem to tilt in favour of suggesting the answer is no, with many suggesting that the jokes fall a little flat and the whole schtick wears a little thin rather quickly. That being said, there are a fair number of reviews out there which have given the film some praise and suggested that while it’s definitely an acquired taste, there is an obvious love of the material there by the filmmakers which shines through. It’s definitely not going to be everybody’s cup of tea, but if seemingly painful slapstick is your bag, it may well be a surprising treat.
You can read Steven Neish’s review here.
Keith Lemon the Film
The rags to riches story of Leigh Francis’ popular TV creation Keith Lemon sees the titular hero find fame and fortune via inventing a phone with a light up lemon stuck on the back (really), and thus enters into a showbiz lifestyle which includes amongst other perks, dating Kelly Brook. Reviews have been less than kind thus far and the question of whether a TV creation can be successfully transmitted to the big screen will once again be raised. Expect plenty of crudity and obnoxious behaviour from Keith but most of all, expect masses of celebrity cameos. A glimpse down the list of celebs appearing does fill your heart with a certain sense of impending doom with the likes of Paddy McGuinnes, Jedward, Fearne Cotten, Chris Moyles and Peter Andre all on-board. Not one for the masses, but fans of the TV show might find something to enjoy, though even they may find it a little stretched over a whole feature film.
In 1990′s Belfast, an IRA member turns informant for MI5 in order to save her own skin and to protect her own son. Shadow Dancer has been receiving plenty if plaudits since its release, with plenty of critics praising its slow burning tension and gripping suspense. The lead actors have all come in for praise, Clive Owen and Gillian Anderson doing sterling work, but its Andrea Riseborough’s Colette taking most of the plaudits. It’s grim, gritty and hard-hitting and looks to be one of the best British spy dramas in some time.
Lisa’s review is here.
Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie
I must admit, I know little or nothing about Tim and Eric but their TV sketch show, Tim and Eric Awesome Show: Great Job! has gained them a cult following in the US. As is my understanding, that show is meant to be camp and a little shoddy, such is its charm, whether this will translate into a big screen adaptation and stretch over a whole film (I’m getting a sense of Deja Vu this week) is open for debate. The scathing reviews thus far would suggest no however. The plot sees Tim and Eric offered $1billion to make a movie, only for them to squander it and decide to build a mall in order to win their money back and avoid the wrath of the mega corporation they were initially granted the funds by. The film has performances from Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis and has many celebrity sponsors and proponents singing its praises. On the other hand, top critic Roger Ebert gave the film 1/2 a star out of 4 and has said it was so bad it wouldn’t even qualify for his book containing reviews of terrible movies. Needless to say, as is becoming the trend this week, this is definitely a film which is an acquired taste.
Donal MacIntyre directs this documentary looking at the issue of football hooliganism around the world. As football violence continues to both shock and fascinate with films like Green Street doing decent business at the box office, Macintyre seeks to interview those involved and try to understand its appeal and its root causes. The footage contained within is pretty hardcore and graphic as he includes clashes from overseas which makes our home-grown thugs pale in comparison. Consider yourself warned.
A coming of age story set in an all-girls New England boarding school starring Rooney Mara and Georgia King. It’s not exactly been warmly received thus far and currently sits at just 13% on Rotten Tomatoes. It’s full of adolescent angst and rivalry but with words like ‘dull’ and ‘mundane’ banded about freely in the reviews I read, it doesn’t seem to offer anything new or exciting we haven’t seen a million times before.