Gone Baby Gone

I want Ben Affleck to give up his day job, not because he’s a bad actor (he has made bad choices however) but because on the strength of Gone Baby Gone he’s got far more promise as a Director than as an Actor. A slow burning, murky noir set around a case of child abduction, Gone Baby Gone feels like a throw back to the tough talking ‘tec pictures that the smaller studios used to make by the dozen in the fifties. However in this case the line between who is good and who is bad is even more blurred – everyone is grey, just some a blacker than others. Even the three out and out villains of the piece elicit a small amount of sympathy, even if their actions are horrific.

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The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford

May well be the most unwieldy title for a film for a long time. It may also account for why it didn’t appear in many cinemas – how do you fit that on the marquee? Pity really, having seen this I’d have loved to have seen it on a big screen, this is a seriously beautiful film, each shot framed to perfection. Not since The Fountain have I seen something that looked so painterly.

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Eastern Promises

The start of autumn usually brings a slew of serious minded films after the summer as things gear up for March the following year. Eastern Promises is getting a lot of publicity following the success of A History of Violence as a companion piece, something that sits wrong as that is a western while this feels more like a urban horror like Taxi Driver.

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The Lives Of Others

Or how Pan’s Labyrinth really wasn’t robbed on 25th February 2007.

Occasionally the buzz around a single film and its likelihood of getting an award becomes so great that it comes as a shock to the system when something else comes along and steals its thunder. Pan’s Labyrinth losing the Best Film in a Foreign Language at this years Oscars felt a bit like that, but having now seen the film that beat it is easy to see why.

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