Category: Film

Coming of age in its various forms

Someone said to me recently, ‘What was Bill Nighy before he got old?’ I thought it was a good question. I saw him for the first time in Love Actually in 2003. He was no spring chicken then. I thought to myself: Where had he been before that? Had he arrived from outer space? Was…

Be afraid…be very afraid

Who will ever forget the summer of 2021 when both the weather and Covid-19 conspired to keep us out of cinemas? When we went back to them, all they seemed to offer us was horror. Old is a supernatural thriller from M. Night Shyamalan about a family who find themselves ageing at an alarming rate…

Tales of love, hate and eccentricity

The Last Bus is an offbeat story about a widowed pensioner (Timothy Spall) who travels from John O’Groats to Land’s End with his wife’s ashes in a suitcase. He uses only local buses. The people he meets on his journey – the longest one can make in Britain – help him deal with his loss.…

The good, the bad and the ugly

The silly season is upon us. That means that we have to suffer nonsense like Fast and Furious 9, which even by its own (lack of) standards is pretty crazy, featuring an outer space element as well as a mad car chase through Edinburgh. But Vin Diesel (whose very name seemed destined to land him…

The man who knew too much

It seemed stranger than fiction. An Englishman living with a Welsh woman is suspected of killing a French woman on the west coast of Cork two days before Christmas in 1996. Sophie Toscan Du Plantier, as most people in Ireland must know by now, was a documentary film-maker whose love affair with our country ended…

A selection of new releases

Fatima was originally scheduled for last August. Its release was delayed for almost a year because of Covid. The virus gives it a strangely appropriate backdrop. It’s like a metaphor for the horrors of World War I. The war underpins Marco Pontecorvo’s uplifting evocation of the beatific visions of three Portuguese children in 1917. Both…

Times are a-changing for Bob Dylan

It’s hard to believe Bob Dylan will be 80 on the 24th of this month. He’s ingested so many substances into that hard-travellin’ body of his over the years. There was a time I didn’t think he’d even make it to 50. To quote Kris Kristofferson, another singer-songwriter who has no right to be alive…