Episode 9

Image for Episode 9Not currently available on BBC iPlayer

Episode 9 of 17

Duration: 40 minutes

Disney goes to Mars in the science fiction feature John Carter; director Michael Winterbottom adapts Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles for the big screen; John Cusack stars as Edgar Allen Poe in the thriller The Raven; and Robert Pattinson plays a social climbing ladies' man in Bel Ami.

Last on

Wed 14 Mar 2012 01:15 BBC One Northern Ireland only

See all previous episodes from Film 2012

  • REVIEW OF JOHN CARTER - Claudia and Danny's film of the week.

    REVIEW OF JOHN CARTER - Claudia and Danny's film of the week.

    DANNY: Whatever else it is, and it’s a lot of things, John Carter is not film-making by committee, it’s the vision of one man, Andrew Stanton. He’s wanted to make this film since he was a child and if you gave 250 million dollars to a child, this is probably what they’d make. The dialogue is terrible, the acting is worse but actually despite, or possibly because of all that – I really enjoyed it! It’s a 250 million dollar B-Movie, there’s a streak of lunacy running all the way through it. It will be compared to Avatar but couldn’t be less like it. It’s aggressively old-fashioned. In 30 years’ time people will still be talking about this film. It’s a proper deranged vision and we don’t have enough of those in cinema.

    CLAUDIA: I can’t say anything mean about Andrew Stanton because he’s created some of my favourite films. There are lots of great actors here, including Ciaran Hinds and Dominic West doing very odd things and there’s way too much voiceover and explanation however, it reminded me of Flash Gordon and I love Flash Gordon. The whole thing is slightly hotch-potch but anyone who’s been to see The Phantom Menace would prefer this. It’s bonkers.

  • REVIEW OF TRISHNA

    REVIEW OF TRISHNA

    CLAUDIA: I love the idea of Tess of the D’Urbervilles in India. India here is beautiful - both the rough and the smooth, the soundtrack is fantastic. I loved this film, the problem comes when the character of Jay has to encapsulate 2 characters, the good and the bad - Alec and Angel and the flip just doesn’t work.

    DANNY: I agree. Winterbottom’s not capable of making a boring film and as a film about India it’s the best movie I’ve seen in quite some time and that big decision to relocate Tess of the D’Urbervilles to India works incredibly well, not just because he’s good at filming India and not just because he’s great at telling the story of people’s real lives and how hard they can be – it’s because he’s good at both. But if you know Tess at all you know it’s a classic love triangle and he’s made another big decision to fold the 2 main male characters into one and that just puts too much pressure on Riz Ahmed who’s so talented but it’s a jump too far even for him.

  • REVIEW OF THE RAVEN

    REVIEW OF THE RAVEN

    DANNY: It should be a fun movie but it’s one of the most miserable experiences I’ve ever had in a cinema. The CGI looks like a work experience knocked it up on his laptop over lunchtime, there’s a boring copper trying to solve a boring murder case and Poe is pushed to the sidelines. Cusack looks visibly depressed throughout the whole thing and rightly so. It’s unacceptable.

    CLAUDIA: I’ve always liked an episode of Quincy and this is a not dissimilar with a bit of Dallas and Patricia Cornwell and a few heaving bosoms thrown in. One minute of this and you’ll wonder why you’re not watching Silence of the Lambs and being properly scared rather than just watching a lot of ravens.

  • REVIEW OF BEL AMI

    REVIEW OF BEL AMI

    CLAUDIA: This story’s been told many times before. It’s a great tale of someone social-climbing and using sex to work their way up the ladder. However I don’t think it works at all here because Pattinson’s character should be more interested in power and more charming, instead he’s petulant and not really clever enough. I don’t know if it’s Robert Pattinson’s fault or the script. The women are brilliant in it – Kristen Scott Thomas isn’t in it nearly enough. If you love clothes and production design there’s a lot to enjoy – look out for Uma Thurman’s wardrobe!

    DANNY: I think it’s a brave move for Pattinson, he has to carry the whole movie. And he’s trying to do something quite subtle under difficult circumstances- there are more experienced actors here struggling under the weight of the costume and set design and the mood of over ripe fruity soap opera so everyone’s struggling a little bit, I don’t think you can entirely blame Robert Pattinson. Cinema history is littered with teen heart-throbs that have gone on to become great actors, look at Brad Pitt, so let’s give R-Patz a chance.

    CLAUDIA: OK, but this film will make you want to watch Dangerous Liaisons, he’s just too spoilt. It doesn’t ring true.

  • LIKE THAT? TRY THIS.....

    Flash Gordon (1980)
    If you like high camp space operas, this is the film for you. Flash Gordon is a football hero called upon to save the world from the evil Emperor Ming. Terrible acting, even worse costumes but with a rousing soundtrack from Queen and a scene stealing performance from the recently Oscar-nominated Max von Sydow as Ming the Merciless– Mike Hodges’s big-budget fantasy is so bad that it’s truly excellent.

    Jason and the Argonauts (1963)
    A lively, fun, family adventure based on Greek Myth about a hero who must travel far and wide in search of the Golden Fleece. Along the way he encounters armies of skeletons and a seven-headed hydra amongst other mythical delights. It stars Todd Armstrong and Honor Blackman but is most memorable for Bernard Herrmann’s surging score and for Ray Harryhausen’s unique and delightful special effects.

    WALL.E (2008)
    Andrew Stanton’s Oscar winning Pixar animation is guaranteed to bring a smile to even the grumpiest of faces. Wall.e is a lonely little robot, left on earth to clear up after the human race had to evacuate due to the accumulation of rubbish and pollution. For 700 years he toils away with only a cockroach and an old VHS of Hello Dolly for company. Then, one day a beautiful love interest arrives in the form of Eve, a probe sent to see if there is life on earth and as Wall.e does everything he can to impress her he unwittingly sets in motion events that lead to the salvation of mankind. Not bad. Heartwarming and unintentionally timely with spectacular animation, Wall.e is a modern classic and should be high on any self-respecting film lovers’ list of favourites.

Credits

Presenter
Claudia Winkleman
Presenter
Claudia Winkleman
Presenter
Danny Leigh
Presenter
Danny Leigh
Series Producer
Jayne Stanger
Series Producer
Jayne Stanger
Executive Producer
Basil Comely
Executive Producer
Basil Comely

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