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The Rise of European Crime Drama

The Rise of European Crime Drama

Television crime drama has come a long way since the magnolia simplicity and warmth of Z-Cars and Dixon of Dock Green. Driven forward by popular series such as Wallinger, Scandinavian-made…

Hoffman’s last major role is a fitting tribute

Hoffman’s last major role is a fitting tribute

A Most Wanted Man (dir. Anton Corbijn, cert. 15) is based on John Le Carré’s 2008 novel, starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, who died in February. Apart from his cameos in…

Suspicions are aroused as a stranger arrives

Suspicions are aroused as a stranger arrives

Last seen driving to his death as Matthew Crawley in Downtown Abbey, Dan Stevens is resurrected as an American black ops soldier in pulp fiction thriller The Guest (dir. Adam…

A tricky moral conundrum

A tricky moral conundrum

Two Days, One Night (cert. 15, French with English subtitles) is a worker’s tale by relatively famous Belgians the Dardenne brothers, Jean-Pierre and Luc. Marion Cotillard plays Sandra, an employee…

A modern-day Western for Cage

A modern-day Western for Cage

Joe (dir. David Gordon Green, cert. 15) gives Nick Cage, in the title role, a chance to get his teeth into a rather better part than he’s had of late.…

A new dawn spawns a new hit

A new dawn spawns a new hit

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (dir. Matt Reeves, cert. 12A) takes us “ten winters” on from the battle on the Golden Gate Bridge in Rise of … (although…

After ‘Once’, a new film to delight

After ‘Once’, a new film to delight

Once was my 2006 film of the year, a quirky tale of love between an Irish busker and a Czech girl in Dublin, and its gorgeous song Falling Slowly won…

Film: Cycling with Molière

Film: Cycling with Molière

You don’t need a degree in French literature for Cycling with Molière (Alceste à bicyclette, French with English subtitles, cert. 15). It helps to attune the ear for the alexandrin…

Notes on Notes: A Vibrant World of Folk

Notes on Notes: A Vibrant World of Folk

Visiting a local folk club recently for a solo performance by Show of Hands front man Steve Knightley, I was struck by the audience as much as the singer. Out…

Jimmy’s Hall and Catholic history

Jimmy’s Hall and Catholic history

Ken Loach’s latest film, Jimmy’s Hall (cert. 12A), may be his last. At 77, he says the work involved, especially on location shoots, is getting a bit much. I happened…

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