Barbie

PG, 114 minutes 4 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury Just how does a professional bimbo some say set the feminist movement back 50 years get to be the centrepiece of a must-see movie? Even those who swore against watching it, now want to know what all the fuss is about as Barbie storms box-office… Continue reading Barbie

Alcarras

Ainet Jounou, and Joel and Isaac Rovira in Alcarras. Image courtesy Palace Films

M, 120 minutes, subtitled 4 Stars  Review by © Jane Freebury From deep within a farm in Catalonia where peaches grow in abundance, there is little to see of the outside world in this intergenerational family drama, though it does make its presence felt. There are festivals in town and there are clubs and bars… Continue reading Alcarras

Sugar and Stars

Riadh Belaiche in Sugar and Stars. Image courtesy Palace Films

M, 110 minutes, subtitled 3 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury This story of a young chef so dedicated to his craft that he camped on the beach while an apprentice, is a new French title that sets out to show how a boy incumbered by a poor start in life can make good.  And… Continue reading Sugar and Stars

Carmen

M, 117 minutes 3 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury This new take on the ravishing gypsy woman who can never belong to anyone is striking. From its raven-haired lead actor to the scrubby desert she crosses in search of a new life, to the city backstreets where she finds sanctuary, the look is nothing… Continue reading Carmen

The New Boy

Aswan Reid in The New Boy,. Image courtesy Roadshow

M, 116 minutes 5 Stars Review by Jane © Freebury In startling opening scenes, a boy trying to escape from police is felled by a boomerang, bundled into a sack and loaded onto a goods train. He is headed for a place where they will train him to wear a shirt, shorts and sandals, comb… Continue reading The New Boy

Other People’s Children

Virginie Efira and Callie Ferreira-Goncalves in Other People's Children. Image courtesy Palace Films

M, 107 minutes, subtitles 4 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury This gentle, relatable relationship drama set in the city of love and romance explores a sadly common situation. A 40-year-old Parisian teacher who spends each working day with other people’s teenage children, comes to quickly realises how much she will miss out on if… Continue reading Other People’s Children

Belle & Sebastian: Next Generation

Belle and Seb (Robinson Mensah-Rouanet) in Belle & Sebastian: Next Generation. Image courtesy Icon

PG, 97 minutes, subtitles 3 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury When no one else understands or appreciates you, a big hound at least as big as yourself and likely heavier, is a best friend ever. So it is, once again, for the fourth film in this popular franchise that began in 2013, based on… Continue reading Belle & Sebastian: Next Generation

Reality

M, 83 minutes 4 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury The name of the young security contractor at the centre of this tense, meticulously plotted drama comes as a surprise, likely to catch filmgoers unawares. And when an FBI agent questioning her suddenly addresses her by name, we may wonder if we missed it earlier.… Continue reading Reality

No Hard Feelings

MA 15+, 103 minutes 3 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury When an old pop song is performed solo in this battle of the sexes for millennials, it is like whoa, where did that come from? A catchy Daryl Hall and John Oates hit from the 1980s gets a sudden and unexpected airing when a… Continue reading No Hard Feelings

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

M, 108 minutes 2 Stars   Review by © Jane Freebury What would possess someone to walk the length of England, from southernmost Devon to the Scottish border? It is an unlikely quixotic adventure but at its helm is the actor most likely to make it work, dependable Jim Broadbent. Why do it? It’s a… Continue reading The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

One Fine Morning

MA 15+, 113 minutes, subtitled 4 Stars   Review by © Jane Freebury One fine day, did Mia Hansen-Love wake up with the idea of casting James Bond’s love interest in the last two 007 movies, Lea Seydoux, as the lead character of her new film? We may never know how it really came to… Continue reading One Fine Morning

The Little Mermaid

  PG, 135 minutes 3 Stars   Review by © Jane Freebury The little mermaid, Ariel, a daughter of the king of the sea who yearns to become a human, needs no introduction. She is also a Disney princess, and if mums and dads have had to watch the classic animation feature of 1989 umpteen… Continue reading The Little Mermaid

Ivan Sen on the outback noir in Limbo

  By © Jane Freebury With digs as far as the eye can see, the remote mining town of Coober Pedy has attracted the attention of many filmmakers, from Australia and overseas. The landscape pitted with holes alongside mounds of excavated rock has an extraordinary strangeness that was irresistible to Ivan Sen, a celebrated Indigenous… Continue reading Ivan Sen on the outback noir in Limbo

Quant

M, 82 minutes 4 Stars     Review by © Jane Freebury  As she says herself in this documentary packed with talking heads and sixties fashion, diva of style in Swinging London, Mary Quant seemed to anticipate what people wanted at the time. This feature, directed by Sadie Frost, has also arrived at an opportune… Continue reading Quant

Ten Pound Poms TV series about postwar Brit migrants

Screening on STAN, BBC I, six 52-minute episodes 3 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury   For such a big cohort, there have been fewer stories on screen, than you might expect, involving the hundreds of thousands of British immigrants who sought a new life in Australia after WWII. Perhaps it’s why this new six-part… Continue reading Ten Pound Poms TV series about postwar Brit migrants

The Survival of Kindness

M, 96 minutes 4 Stars Review by © Jane Freebury A new film from Rolf de Heer has at last arrived. A drama with a cool, fierce intensity that is of a piece with other work in his distinctive oeuvre, while it carries his concerns even further forward. Thirty years have passed since his feature… Continue reading The Survival of Kindness

Interview with Rolf de Heer on his new film, The Survival of Kindness

  Set against the beautiful backdrops of Australian desert and mountain wilderness, foregrounding brutality and compassion in a post-apocalyptic world, there is, as with each of his films, a surprise nestled within … Read Jane Freebury’s interview with Rolf de Heer on his latest film, The Survival of Kindness, published in The Guardian on 22… Continue reading Interview with Rolf de Heer on his new film, The Survival of Kindness