Monthly Archives: April 2013

Iron Man 3 international cut angers Chinese bloggers

Internet users in China who have seen international cut of new superhero movie dismayed at lack of airtime for Chinese stars and China-set sequencesIt was billed as a joint venture between two cinematic superpowers, a collaboration between east and wes… Continue reading

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Nosher Powell obituary

Heavyweight boxer, James Bond stuntman and bodyguard to Hollywood stars

The abiding memory that millions around the world will have of Nosher Powell, who has died aged 84, is of him fighting in vain to save his aeroplane after it had been attacked by a seagull in Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines (1965). Gert Fröbe may have been the German officer in charge of the plane but it was Powell who, as the stuntman and double, ended up in the water.

Powell’s first appearance as a stuntman was in Laurence Olivier’s Henry V (1944). He also had small roles in David Lean’s Oliver Twist (1948) and Cosh Boy (1953), with Joan Collins. In 1952 he was a boxer in Emergency Call, in which he fought the former world champion Freddie Mills. Powell had a decent if not outstanding boxing career himself, reaching No 3 in the British heavyweight rankings.

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The ABCs of Death – review

Twenty-six horror directors concoct a death for each letter of the alphabet – but there’s not much intentional fun here Continue reading… Continue reading

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The Punk Syndrome – watch it here

The third film in our New View documentary season is a full-on account of an angry Finnish punk act, whose members are all learning disabled. Available in the UK and Ireland onlyReading on mobile? Watch The Punk Syndrome hereBlasting onto day three of … Continue reading

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Oblivion – review

A bafflingly solemn, lugubrious and fantastically derivative sci-fi

Only recently, Tom Cruise looked as if he was attempting to grow twelve inches to play tall tough guy Jack Reacher; now his role-model appears to be Wall-E, the diminutive cartoon automaton left behind on a wrecked planet Earth to clean up. Sadly there’s none of Wall-E’s spark in this bafflingly solemn, lugubrious and fantastically derivative sci-fi which serves up great big undigested lumps of Total Recall, AI, Planet of the Apes – with little snippets of Top Gun.

Cruise plays Jack Harper, a tough and self-reliant soldier in the late 21st century, after a victorious but catastrophically destructive battle against alien invaders. He has been tasked – along with the sleek and adoring Victoria, played by Andrea Riseborough – to monitor what remains of Earth prior to humanity’s final emigration, and to supervise a fleet of pilotless drone craft which hunt down hostile “scavs”, or scavengers, hiding out on the surface.

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Papadopoulos & Sons – review

A sincere north London comedy-drama exploring family relationships – amid kebab shop rivalry

Playwright-turned-director Marcus Markou’s debut is a cheerful, foursquare comedy-drama along East is East lines. Stephen Dillane – an actor whose droll choices are always a pleasure to watch – gives it some class as Harry Papadopoulos, the north London comestibles magnate obliged to downsize when he finds that even an empire founded on taramasalata cannot survive a double-dip recession; Georges Corraface brings the energy as Harry’s estranged brother, who sees reopening a chippy as a way of securing the clan’s future. Rivalry with a Turkish kebab shop follows – Markou isn’t beyond broad, crowdpleasing tactics – but it’s set against a sincere exploration of the brothers’ differences, and an ambitious attempt to rewrite Lear for laughter rather than tears. It’s a throwback, but relaxed, sweet and funny with it: a first feature that makes an impression by not pushing too hard to make an impression.

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Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times movie critic, dies aged 70

America’s most popular film reviewer, who wielded the nation’s most famous thumb, dies in Chicago after cancer treatmentRoger Ebert, the most famous and most popular film reviewer of his time who became the first journalist to win a Pulitzer Prize for … Continue reading

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