Category Archives: Film

Sidney Lumet on high comedy and great acting

By Ray Bennett LONDON – American filmmaker Sidney Lumet, who was born 95 years ago today and died in 2011, made a series of fine and gripping social dramas from the 1950s through the 1980s but he was a big … Continue reading

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‘Under Fire’ with Nolte, Cassidy and Hackman new on Blu-ray

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Great news! Roger Spottiswood’s excellent  1983 political thriller ‘Under Fire’ starring Nick Nolte, Gene Hackman, Joanna Cassidy,  Ed Harris and Jean-Louis Trintignant is out today on Blu-ray Disc in the U.K. from Eureka Entertainment. The … Continue reading

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FILM REVIEW: Natalie Portman in ‘Vox Lux’

By Ray Bennett TORONTO – Just as in ‘Jackie’ two years ago, Natalie Portman gives a scintillating performance of a driven and complicated woman in a not very successful picture. Director and screenwriter Brady Corbet’s ‘Vox Lux’, which opens today … Continue reading

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Film Review Brief: Trevor Nunn’s ‘Red Joan’

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Trevor Nunn’s slightly old-fashioned espionage drama ‘Red Joan’, which opens in the United Kingdom today, won’t set any box-office records but it is an absorbing drama. Sophie Cookson (pictured above with Stephen Campbell Moore) is … Continue reading

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On Stanley Kubrick’s ‘A Clockwork Orange’

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Stanley Kubrick’s controversial ‘A Clockwork Orange’ starring Malcolm McDowell is re-released in the United Kingdom today. As always with Kubrick, it is a striking combination of visual power, evocative music and powerful drama. Now controversial … Continue reading

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Michael Caine: recalling a class act at the 2000 Oscars

By Ray Bennett Spending time with Michael Caine is always a pleasure and since today is his 86th birthday, here’s one of my favourite encounters from 2000. LOS ANGELES – It’s ironic that the word on everyone’s lips following Michael Caine’s … Continue reading

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FILM REVIEW: Cruz and Bardem in ‘Everybody Knows’

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Married Spanish Oscar-winners Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem have become a reliable partnership onscreen and their latest feature together, ‘Everybody Knows’, is a bright addition to their canon. It opens today in the United Kingdom. … Continue reading

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FILM REVIEW: Adam McKay’s ‘Vice’

By Ray Bennett LONDON – American writer-director Adam McKay’s political satire ‘Vice’ does for Washington what his 2015 film ‘The Big Short’ did for Wall Street with the same mix of techniques that includes sharp humour, characters speaking to camera, … Continue reading

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‘Roma’, ‘The Favourite’, ‘Cold War’ top London critics awards

By Ray Bennett LONDON – There were few surprises at the London Critics’ Circle Film Awards on Sunday as Alfonso Cuaron’s black-and-white Spanish drama ‘Roma’ won best picture and he was named best director while costume romp ‘The Favourite’ picked … Continue reading

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FILM REVIEW: Josie Rourke’s ‘Mary Queen of Scots’

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Josie Rourke’s pedestrian costume saga ‘Mary Queen of Scots’ offers a revisionist and modernist view of the would-be monarch who threatened Elizabeth I’s reign and was executed aged 44 in 1587 but it fails to … Continue reading

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