A critical look at cinema


Rachel McAdams.
It's About Time again: What happened when a film critic discussed ill-considered sex in a Richard Curtis movie
By Ryan Gilbey - 03 September 13:27

Last week Ryan Gilbey expressed discomfort at a scene in Richard Curtis's new time travel rom-com About Time, and was astonished by the responses he received.

Rachel McAdams and Domhnall Gleeson as Tim and Mary in About Time.
The sexual misdemeanour that casts a long shadow over Richard Curtis's About Time
By Ryan Gilbey - 29 August 11:36

The time travel element in <em>About Time</em>, Richard Curtis's new comedy, has produced a disastrous scene that should be studied by future generations as the wrong way to deploy a theoretically rich comic device.

Bluster, blandness and poignancy in Morgan Spurlock's One Direction: This Is Us
By Ryan Gilbey - 28 August 16:09

One Direction's first film manages to balance contradictory versions of its mega-famous subjects to great effect, giving glimpses of both the public and private incarnations of the band members.

Upstream Colour.
Upstream Colour: Cronenbergian scenes which try to break loose from conventional storytelling
By Ryan Gilbey - 23 August 12:00

Ryan Gilbey tries to puzzle out an ice cool drama from Shane Carruth - a circle-of-life story with psychedelic maggots.

Kuma: A film of wordless transmissions of longing underneath ersatz Hollywood direction
By Ryan Gilbey - 22 August 15:00

Kuma, the new migration drama from Austrian-Kurdish director Umut Dag, is a subtle movie distorted by its director's razzle-dazzle approach.

Alan Partridge.
Alpha Papa: Just enough common sense to save us from the monsters
By Ryan Gilbey - 08 August 12:00

Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa develops and deepens a character we know and love - a humble comedy with the right amount of sanity.

Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer in The Lone Ranger.
Johnny Depp characterising critics as all-powerful movie slayers is pure delusion
By Ryan Gilbey - 06 August 12:23

With newspapers laying off arts writers, the suggestion The Lone Ranger has been ruined by dishonest reviewers seems paradoxical. Perhaps there are other reasons behind the blockbuster's US flop?

Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy.
Why The Heat is so much better than Only God Forgives
By Ryan Gilbey - 30 July 11:30

Ryan Gilbey explains why he'd take the jubilant Sandra Bullock cop comedy over Nicholas Winding Refn's self-conscious sixth-form artiness any day of the week.

Mickey Sumner and Greta Gerwig
Frances Ha: Fun but never frothy, light but not lightweight
By Ryan Gilbey - 25 July 15:45

Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig's Manhattan-esque comedy, shot entirely in black and white, brings the force and intimacy of a love story to bear on the relationship between two Brooklyn-based flatmates.

Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck.
Roman Holiday: Meeting Audrey Hepburn for the very first time
By Ryan Gilbey - 22 July 11:54

William Wyler's 1953 romantic comedy Roman Holiday introduced Audrey Hepburn to the world. With the film's re-issue, the power of her first leading role hasn't diminished one bit.

The World's End.
The World's End: A comedy of ideas as well as gags
By Ryan Gilbey - 18 July 16:00

Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg return for the final instalment of their "Cornetto" trilogy: a raucous comedy slightly gnarled by its lofty ambitions.

A cinema doorway.
Last week I walked out of a film - am I a bad person?
By Ryan Gilbey - 16 July 15:30

Is it ever right to leave a film early? After all, going to the cinema is about so much more than what’s on the screen.

Status Quo with their guitars in a tropical sea.
Status Quo have ensured the demise of the pop star feature film forever more - and it's a shame
By Ryan Gilbey - 03 July 16:15

Bula Quo! might be tired, naive and desperately middle-of-the-road, but spare the pop-film genre! I can't be the only one who looks at Rizzle Kicks or Dizzee Rascal and thinks: give those kids a movie.

A Field in England: A film swathed in mist and murk
By Ryan Gilbey - 03 July 10:53

Director Ben Wheatley - "a Guy Ritchie for hipsters" - has attracted something of a devoted following. But surely it's time for him to start making movies that reach beyond his fan base?

Gru (voiced by Steve Carell) in Despicable Me 2.
Can't we just ban sequels for a few months?
By Ryan Gilbey - 27 June 11:29

Ryan Gilbey wonders why <em>Despicable Me 2</em> had to be made.

Members of the Russian feminist collective Pussy Riot on film.
Gangsters’ paradise
By Ryan Gilbey - 27 June 11:08

Ryan Gilbey reviews three documentaries: <em>The Act of Killing, Pussy Riot: a Punk Prayer</em> and <em>Stories We Tell.</em>

New Statesman
Because he's a Stone Roses superfan, Shane Meadows's chronicle of the band's comeback feels like a dereliction of duty
By Ryan Gilbey - 18 June 11:34

The Stone Roses are back, whether you like it or not. Two new films, Spike Island by Mat Whitecross and Shane Meadow's Made of Stone, boast of the band's greatness, without offering much of a reason for it.

From Satyajit Ray and Lars von Trier to Richard Linklater and Edgar Wright: Three is the magic number
By Ryan Gilbey - 12 June 11:20

One film? Anyone can do that. A set of two? Just bookends. Three is a force to be reckoned with.

Glenn Close.
All may, none must, some should: Is it right for an actor to apologise for their work?
By Ryan Gilbey - 07 June 14:44

Daniel Craig apologised for Quantum of Solace in 2011, and this week, Glenn Close has expressed regret publicly for her portrayal of a woman with mental illness in Fatal Attraction. But was it necessary?

Audrey Tautou and Gilles Lellouche in Miller's new adaptation
Thérèse Desqueyroux strives after a significance that it can’t corroborate
By Ryan Gilbey - 06 June 10:27

Claude Miller's new adaptation of Thérèse Desqueyroux has some neat acting from Audrey Tautou, but the film fails to catch fire.

Ana Torrent and Geraldine Chaplin in Cría cuervos (Raise Ravens).
Raise ravens and they’ll pluck out your eyes
By Ryan Gilbey - 24 May 12:15

If you’ve seen The Cement Garden, Pan’s Labyrinth or The Others, you are already familiar with some of the pictures which wouldn’t exist without Carlos Saura's Cría cuervos.

New Statesman
The Hangover Part III: a franchise in its death throes
By Ryan Gilbey - 23 May 14:05

Another installment of the second-unfunniest comedy franchise in town.

Carey Mulligan in Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby.
All that glitters is gigabytes
By Ryan Gilbey - 16 May 13:09

Reviewed: The Great Gatsby.

In praise of Benedict Cumberbatch
By Ryan Gilbey - 10 May 15:01

It may be controversial to say so, but he's really something, isn't he?

Julie Christie and Tom Courtenay
Dwarling, it's wonderful!
By Ryan Gilbey - 02 May 15:10

Billy Liar at 50.

Trousersnakes on a plane
By Ryan Gilbey - 01 May 13:24

Reviewed: Pedro Almodóvar’s "I'm So Excited!".

New Statesman
Reviewed: The Look of Love
By Ryan Gilbey - 26 April 16:18

Mags to riches.