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Film Guide - May 4, 2012

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TO SW GuideArtist

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Manon: Massenet’s opulent opera Manon, based on the famed novelette Manon Lescaut by Abbé Prévost, is the penultimate Met-production to be screened in the current season. Anna Netrebko sings the title role. (Not Reviewed)

Mirror Mirror: Dressed in gorgeously OTT costumes Julia Roberts and Lily Collins sweep their way through castle and forest respectively in this retelling of the Snow White fairy tale. *** TS

One Life: BBC wildlife documentary focusing on the cyclical nature of life, narrated by Daniel Craig. (Not reviewed)

Ordinary People: Three men’s lives are eternally altered by the impactful words of a potato farmer. **** TG

Project X: Teenage high school debauchery is had in a massive party blowout that causes the biggest mayhem in town. HH TG

Puncture: Chris Evans plays a drug addled lawyer who takes on Texan medical suppliers in a quest to force them to use safe needles. *** TS

Safe House: Denzel Washington as a CIA agent gone rogue and Ryan Reynolds tuning SAPS in Afrikaans – all in Cape Town. What’s not to love? **** HH

Salmon Fishing in The Yemen: Ewan McGregor and Emily Blunt star as a pair who find a way to make a nearly impossible project work and then they find each other. *** HH

Semi-soet: This is the second time round for the director and producers and a first attempt at an Afrikaans romantic comedy. Great idea with some cool rhythms, but they need to keep up the hip factor and not fall back on the tried and tired. *** DdB

The Artist: Black and white, silent, Oscar winner about an actor at the height of fame, who struggles to adapt to the advent of talkies in the 1930s, as a fellow actress’s star takes off. **** TS

The Avengers: Iron Man, The Hulk, Hawkeye, Thor, Captain America and The Black Widow fighting a badass Loki and his relentless army. ‘Nuff said. *** HH

The Cup: Dull film about horseracing jockey Damien Oliver’s triumph over family trials. ** HH

The Grey: Joe Carnahan directs Liam Neeson as a man hunted by wolves. Visually striking, even if the subject matter is totally unbelievable. *** TG

The Hunger Games: In the Twilight saga for grown-ups, Jennifer Lawrence kicks ass and takes names in a post-apocalyptic world. *** HH

The Lorax: Dr Seuss’ tale about caring for the planet features the voices of Zac Efron, Danny DeVito, Taylor Swift and Betty White. *** HH

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy: Excellent ensemble cast and tight directing turns John le Carré’s Cold War spy novel into a classy puzzle of a thriller with a great soundtrack. **** TS

Titanic 3D: That sinking feeling when you discover the (barely there) 3D version of the 1997 original film doesn’t omit the Celine Dion song … Still stars Leonardo diCaprio and Kate Winslet. *** HH

Wrath of the Titans 3D: Gorgeous scenery but the flat, clichéd dialogue and poor scripting drags it along. The action sequences are well filmed, but would be nauseating in 3D. ** TS

Battleship: A race of aliens lands in the ocean during a naval combat exercise and it's up to a childish commander to grow up and save the world. *** HH

Coriolanus: Shakespeare's Greek tragedy starring Vanessa Redgrave, directed by Ralph Fiennes. (Not reviewed)

Lessons of a Dream: A film about one man’s goal to introduce soccer at a German boarding school in the 1800s. (Not reviewed)

Think Like a Man: It’s battle of the sexes in this ‘how to get a man’ flick. Predictable, lame and slightly enjoyable if you take it for what it is. *** KM

The Raven: John Cusack stars as Edgar Allen Poe in a thriller about the imagines last days of the writers life. *** HH

21 Jump Street: Forget a trip down memory lane, Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum go undercover on a rollercoaster ride to modern day high school. Just like the original TV series. **** HH

A Million Colours: Director, Peter Bishai, beautifully adds to South Africa’s cinematography lexicon in this local film about what really happened to the stars of e’Lollipop. *** TS

American Pie Reunion: The gang are back at it again in true American Pie fashion. Thirteen years later we see that the more things change, the more they stay the same. *** TG

Best Exotic Marigold Hotel: Seven British retirees discover a newfound lust for life when they retire to India. Beautiful character study, even if the plot is a bit clichéd. *** TS

Big Year: Owen Wilson, Steve |Martin and Jack Black in a forgettable dramedy about watching birds for sport. ** HH

Contraband: Mark Wahlberg is a better smuggler than his brother in law… plus a better actor too, but even Giovanni Ribisi can’t help save this clanger. HH TS

Good Deeds: In this Pretty Woman-esque film, Tyler Perry is a wealthy man who finds love is something he can’t buy. With Gabrielle Union, Thandie Newton and Phylicia Rashad. *** HH

Hugo: Martin Scorsese’s love of cinema shines through in this ode to the work of Georges Méliès which makes gorgeous use of 3D. **** TS

Jack and Jill: Adam Sandler plays himself, and his twin sister. Badly. * TS

Journey 2 Mysterious Island 3D: The Rock shows off his pecs in an adventure in which he is teamed up with Michael Caine whose whimsical quips are the best thing about this movie. ** TG


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