“The Children Act,” unequal, at times awkward, clamors for well-deserved attention

Film is based on the eponymous 2014 novel by Ian McEwan
Emma Thompson, Stanley Tucci and Fionn Whitehead
Directed by Richard Eyre

For better or for worse, Ian McEwan doesn't see much virtue in religious beliefs or faith. To him, they are a hindrance at best, an absurdity at worst. Founders and practitioners of various religions and cults come up with a logic completely devoid of reason, one that’s meant only to establish their power on the sheep that follow them. Not mincing words, he makes the point in “The Children Act,” ... more >


CANNES FESTIVAL, “The Meyerowitz Stories”

Film is like a collab between Woody Allen and Whit Stillman
Dustin Hoffmann, Adam Sandler and Ben Stiller
Directed by Noah Baumbach

Midway through the 70th Cannes Festival the focus has veered sharply away from missing persons to domestic entanglements: or put another way, from people who have checked out of your life – voluntarily or involuntarily – to those you have no choice but to coexist with. It’s always difficult living in the shadow of a famous parent, but what if that parent isn’t exactly the genius you always ... more >

effie gray review dakota

FIRST LOOK: Effie Gray

Produced by Sovereign Films / Distributed by Metrodome
Country: U.K.

"Effie Gray" is a 2012 British biographical drama film directed by Richard Laxton, released in 2014 in the U.K. The film's release was delayed by several lawsuits that alleged that the script, written by Emma Thompson, was plagiarised from earlier dramatizations of the same story (Thompson won the suit). The subject of "Effie" is the love triangle involving Victorian art critic John Ruskin ... more >

THE LOVE PUNCH | In case you missed it

A classic comedy caper set on the Riviera
Pierce Brosnan and Emma Thompson
Directed by Joel Hopkins

There are two types of British indie movies. Some are touched with deep or crazy ideas too creative for mainstream release. Others give middle-aged British stars something to do in between “Harry Potter” movies. Emma Thompson and Pierce Brosnan are the middle-age British stars of record in Jeff Hopkins’s romantic comedy, “The Love Punch.” They play a divorced English couple driven to both ... more >

COLIN FARRELL cast in Mary Poppins project

Long-winded Disney project is finally gathering steam

Yes, you heard right. Mary Poppins is getting an update--it will be called Saving Mr. Banks, will be produced by Disney and is adapted from a screenplay by Kelly Marcel. John Lee Hancock will direct. Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson (Meryl Streep was first in line to get the role) have already been attached, as previously reported by Deadline, and Colin Farrell has officially joined the party. The ... more >

An Education

The innocence of the young
Carey Mulligan, Peter Sarsgaard and Alfred Molina
Directed by Lone Scherfig

[SPOILER WARNING] I once wrote Steven Spielberg never creates an interesting moral dilemma that a boy in a helicopter can’t fly his way out of. I feel the same way about Lone Scherfig’s An Education, a film that repeatedly Medivacs its teenage heroine out of real complication and back to the Army Field Hospital for Conventional Wisdom. The film is the American Beauty of 2009, teasing us with a ... more >

Last Chance Harvey

When meeting someone becomes a game-changer
Dustin Hoffman, Emma Thompson and Kathy Baker
Directed by Joel Hopkins

Is there a film critic’s superstition that the first film you see in a year will determine if the rest of the film year is good or bad? Oh, I hope not. That’s because only one word comes to mind when I think about Last Chance Harvey: phony. Starting with its overly precious title (His name is Harvey. It’s his last chance), this tale of a music man blares false note after false note. Not one seems ... more >