Feb 192012
 

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Too many films, too little time! Check out our brief thoughts on 3 films currently available to rent & own.

Sleeping Beauty

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Without question a more pointless film does not exist than Sleeping Beauty. This is easily the worst film of the 12 months – and War Horse & The Change-Up came out in that time-frame. The film follows Lucy (Emily Browning) a university student who takes a job with a high-class prostitution agency. We see the work she does and a hint of some of the impact it has on her life. While this film is beautifully shot, beauty alone isn’t a good enough reason for this film to exist. It is little more than art-porn; a soulless work that doesn’t make any statement or point. Perhaps if the film had shown more of the impact of the work on Lucy – or even let us know a little more about the men; but the characters were nothing more than robots. This film is one of the most technically brilliant preposterous pieces of garbage in existence.

 

Beginners

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Charming, heart-felt and an absolute delight to watch. Beginners shows us the final period  of Hal field’s (Christopher Plummer) life through the narration and perspective of his son Oliver (Ewan McGregor). After the death of Hal’s wife, Hal reveals he is gay, and proceeds to spend the rest of his life as a proud gay man. The film is beautiful in so many ways. We watch Oliver as he packs his father’s house up and reflects on how he chose to live his final days. At the same time we see Oliver trying to understand where his life is heading & wonder if he is living his life as his true self. It’s very much a film of self-reflection and paths left unexplored. One final comment – the dog in this film is absolutely adorable. It adds to the story rather than distracting from it. Uggie eat your heart out!

 

Oranges and Sunshine

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A moving film which tells the story of British social worker Margaret Humphreys (Emily Watson) who discovers that in the post World War 2 period, British children were made wards of the state and shipped off to Australia unaccompanied. These children were told their parents had died or had abandoned them, when in fact they were often taken forcibly. The film follows Margaret as she tries to discover what happened to these children and how it was allowed to take place. What started off as a quest to reunite a small group of children with their families, turns into something much bigger once the sheer number of children involved becomes clear. To make things worse, she discovers that many of the children had been subject to abuse by their Australian carers. The cast in this film is absolutely suburb and they do an incredible job and expressing the emotion and pain of their characters. Beautifully shot, well paced, and absolutely heart-breaking. A truly great Australian film.

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