Film

Chernobyl's radar station, Duga-3, is the star of Chad Gracia's documentary 'The Russian Woodpecker' about what really happened in Chernobyl in 1986. Photo: Sundance

Conspiracies, hookers and bombs – welcome to the Odessa Film Festival

30 July 2015 13:16

Odessa, the pearl of the Black Sea, is one of the most charming port cities you can imagine, the centre of the city mainly 19th-century Italian and French architecture. Like… Continue reading

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Magic Mike XXL reviewed: stripping can be sexy – but lying on a pinned-down woman’s face is not

6 July 2015 18:17

It’s hard to overstate how much I wanted to like Magic Mike XXL, the sequel to the 2012 Steven Soderbergh hit about male strippers. I have long proclaimed loudly to… Continue reading

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Soviet Colonel who prevented 1983 nuclear response

Meet Stanislav Petrov – the cantankerous man who saved the world

1 July 2015 9:36

I’ve just watched a rather good DVD. This happens so rarely that I thought I’d share the fact with you. It was a film called The Man Who Saved The… Continue reading

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Entourage review: its obsession with boobs, babes and oiled up bodies continues

17 June 2015 14:54

Look, could everyone please stop denigrating the Entourage movie for spurious reasons like ‘it feels like an extended episode of the TV series’? Since the US release a few weeks… Continue reading

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What Afghan soldiers really think – the same as us

19 May 2015 11:36

‘The NATO Commander in Eastern Afghanistan has said that this year 54 foreign bases have already been closed…’ Last December Channel 4 aired a documentary entitled Billion Dollar Base: Deconstructing… Continue reading

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Force Majeure reviewed: meaty and hilarious – but it may wreck your relationship

24 April 2015 13:13

If you’re unsure about the man (or woman) you’re dating, go and see this film. It’ll cause rifts in a weak relationship, and yield powerful debate – or perhaps agreement… Continue reading

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Russell Brand’s The Emperor’s New Clothes reviewed: ‘uncomfortable viewing’

23 April 2015 13:45

For the past year Russell Brand – who is worth an estimated £10 million – has been making a film about inequality. You may already know this. The comedian’s antics… Continue reading

38 Comments
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The trailer for the new Star Wars film suggests it could be the best yet

17 April 2015 16:30

If the Fast & Furious team made Casablanca 2 (‘Morocco Drift’) it would be a more artistically credible, better acted, and more entertaining movie than Star Wars: Episode I –… Continue reading

4 Comments
Image: Getty

Jeffrey Archer: Bollywood plagiarised my books

4 March 2015 15:56

Jeffrey Archer is none too impressed with the Bollywood film industry. In an interview with India’s DNA Newspaper, he said that several Bollywood films have ripped off his books without his permission.… Continue reading

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Eddie Redmayne accepts his award from Cate Blanchett
Picture: ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images

Oscars 2015: Neil Patrick Harris took it too far

23 February 2015 10:23

Birdman soared past longtime favourite Boyhood at the 87th Academy Awards, as Alejandro González Iñárritu’s hilarious Hollywood satire unexpectedly took both of the top prizes – best picture and director… Continue reading

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Emir Kusturica in Andrićgrad

Emir Kusturica interview: why Slavoj Žižek is a fraud

19 February 2015 8:00

Last month I was invited on a press trip to Serbia. The whole thing sounded great; free accommodation, free food, free travel. I said yes, obviously. But there was a… Continue reading

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Vladimir Urin, head of the Bolshoi Theatre Photo: Corbis

The Kremlin is dictating Russian culture once more – and it’s neo-Soviet and anti-Western

18 February 2015 14:42

It’s suddenly gone icy-cold in Russia’s arts relations with us and the US. Last year’s Russia-UK Year of Culture just snicked under the wire before the political chill started building… Continue reading

8 Comments
Mr Turner. Photo: Kobal Collection

Deborah Ross’s top five films of 2014

23 December 2014 14:55

1. Mr Turner Mike Leigh’s infinitely superior biopic starring a sublime, if grunty, Timothy Spall. 2. 12 Years A Slave Harrowing – you’ll be harrowed to within an inch of… Continue reading

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Mike Nichols collecting an AFI Life Achievement  Award

The Spectator’s original review of The Graduate, directed by Mike Nichols

20 November 2014 13:57

This review first appeared in The Spectator on 15 August 1968. In the United States The Graduate is already as much a phenomenon as a film. Critics have been treating… Continue reading

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Why Paddington is anti-Ukip propaganda

19 November 2014 12:46

Well, I’ve just been to see the new Paddington film – the one Colin Firth bowed out of on account of not feeling up to being the voice of the… Continue reading

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Kajaki review: never have I seen a more gruesome depiction of war

19 November 2014 11:07

On September 6th, 2006, a mortar unit from 3rd Battalion, 3 Para, defending the Kajaki dam over the Helmand River in Afghanistan, spotted an illegal road block set up by… Continue reading

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'An Evening with Arnold Schwarzenegger'. Image: Yui Mok/PA

When Arnie met Ross

16 November 2014 18:10

Arnie mania struck the capital last night. A thousand fans crowded into the Lancaster London Hotel to see Schwarzenegger in conversation with Jonathan Ross. He came bounding on stage, in… Continue reading

3 Comments
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Citizenfour: the paranoia of Snowden & co will bore you to death

13 November 2014 13:50

In simple entertainment terms Citizenfour isn’t as interesting as watching paint dry. It is more like watching someone else watching paint dry. People with opinions on Edward Snowden tend to… Continue reading

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Leviathan: the anti-Putin film the Russians tried to ban that’s tipped for an Oscar

6 November 2014 17:32

The funny thing about a film like Leviathan, which many expected to win the Palme d’Or at Cannes earlier this year (it didn’t), is that suddenly an awful lot of… Continue reading

12 Comments
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David Cronenberg’s Map to the Stars: threesomes, incest, a dead dog and whiny farts

1 October 2014 16:41

In a scene that sticks from Map to the Stars, David Cronenberg’s Grand Guignol of a Hollywood satire, Julianne Moore, playing an ageing Hollywood never-has-been, sits on the loo in… Continue reading

7 Comments
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The Disappearance of Michel Houellebecq: French chin-stroking at its very best

23 September 2014 14:59

Just when you thought Bernard-Henri Lévy had taken a chin-stroking national stereotype as far as it could possibly go, you open Le Monde‘s business pages and see this. Bernard Maris,… Continue reading

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Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images

In praise of Den-zel

18 September 2014 13:21

His Christian name is only two syllables, with the stress (following the African-American pronunciation) on the second. Two syllables that are a byword for urbane cool. A mellifluous shibboleth – the… Continue reading

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Image: Getty

Citizen Brand

27 August 2014 12:58

So it turns out the revolution will be televised after all. ‘Brand’, a full length documentary about the comedian turned political activist Russell Brand, is heading our way next year.… Continue reading

21 Comments
Richard Attenborough on a location shoot on Brighton beach. Photo: John Williams/Getty Images

Working with Dickie Attenborough

25 August 2014 14:19

During my short and probably best forgotten acting career, I found myself on the pointy end of Dickie Attenborough’s camera on two memorable occasions. The first was a cough and… Continue reading

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Richard Attenborough as Pinky in 'Brighton Rock' (1947). Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Remember Richard Attenborough for his acting – not his directing

25 August 2014 12:44

Jurassic Park has a lot to answer for. When I was growing up, I was convinced Richard Attenborough was a real dinosaur scientist. I was also convinced that Richard was David. When… Continue reading

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