ABR Arts Film

Lincoln

Morag Fraser
Wednesday, 30 January 2013

The Academy Award season is so given to hyperbole that it was a relief to read one critic not starry-eyed about Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln. Rex Reed, in the New York Observer, criticised the film for having ‘too much material, too little revelation and almost nothing of Spielberg’s reliable cinematic flair’. I don’t agree for a moment, but Re ...

Wuthering Heights

Brian McFarlane
Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Those Brontës. If they’d only had a decent agent with foresight, they could have escaped that dank parsonage on the gloomy moors of windswept Yorkshire and set up on the French Riviera in comfort. Since 1910 there have been at least forty film or television versions of Jane Eyre, most recently in 2011. Now it is Emily’s turn for the latest (seventeenth) ...

Trishna

Philippa Hawker
Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Choosing to set a screen adaptation of Tess of the d’Urbervilles (1891) in contemporary India might seem like an almost perverse shift, or an over-determining decision. But for British film-maker Michael Winterbottom, there is consistency and history of a sort. It is his third Thomas Hardy adaptation, and his fourth feature shot on the subcontinent. In re ...

The Deep Blue Sea

Brian McFarlane
Monday, 23 April 2012

By chance, two of the most famous 1950s plays are in the news again. John Osborne’s historic rant, Look Back in Anger (1956), has been successfully revived on Broadway, while Terence Rattigan’s emotionally taut piece, The Deep Blue Sea (1952), has been filmed by another Terence – Davies, that is. In their day, Osborne railed against the ‘po ...

Coriolanus

Michael Morley
Wednesday, 21 March 2012

With its opening montage of colliding images – a knife being drawn across a whetstone, television footage of massed crowds, milling soldiers in combat fatigues, politicians alighting from cars, with linking television intertitles and an underlying soundtrack of pulsating drums – Ralph Fiennes’s and John Logan’s take on Coriolanus immediately establi ...

Carnage

Jake Wilson
Monday, 27 February 2012

‘There is such and such a relationship between a man and a woman. They are living in such and such a place. And here come the intruders.’ So Roman Polanski, interviewed in 1969, described the conception of Cul de Sac (1966), his favourite among his films.

The description could equally apply to the modest but typically excellent Carnage, ...

The Tall Man

Jake Wilson
Thursday, 24 November 2011

One morning in 2004, an Aboriginal man named Cameron Doomadgee was arrested for swearing at a police officer; forty-five minutes later he lay dead on the floor of his cell. Something had gone badly wrong, though the white senior sergeant on duty, the towering Chris Hurley, denied he was in any way at fault.

What happened before and after is told in Chloe Hoo ...

Peter Rose reviews 'The Eye of the Storm'

Peter Rose
Tuesday, 27 September 2011

So Patrick White’s most flamboyant novel (with the possible exception of The Twyborn Affair) has been brought to the cinema, after the usual longueurs and fiscal frights. Director Fred Schepisi and his scriptwriter, Judy Morris, have tamed the long and somewhat unwieldy beast that won White the Nobel Prize in 1973. Lovers of the novel will miss certain sc ...

Jane Eyre

Melinda Harvey
Wednesday, 29 June 2011

The opening frames of Cary Joji Fukunaga’s Jane Eyre are startling. Charlotte Brontë’s novel, published in 1847, is a trenchant portrait of female entrapment, but this new adaptation immediately thrusts us outside. A fully grown Jane (Mia Wasikowska) hastens down a hill slope and roams around a vast, viridian moorland. Nearly thirty film and television ...

Here I Am

Jake Wilson
Tuesday, 24 May 2011

It takes fifteen minutes of screen time before Karen (Shai Pittman), the young Aboriginal heroine of Beck Cole’s Here I Am, finds a room of her own. Before this, we have seen her riding away from prison in a taxi, blissfully feeling the wind on her face; walking through dark Adelaide streets, clutching a box of treasured possessions; and prostituting hers ...

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