Welcome to our 768th weekly edition; Thursday November 24, 2011

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Movie review:
(US, 2011) Stars George Clooney, Ryan Gosling, Paul Giamatti, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Evan Rachel Wood, Marisa Tomei. "Engrossing, immensely relevant and completely timely, The Ides of March is a triumph for all concerned," says Andrew. " .. gripping political drama in which loyalty, principles and integrity tumble like a house of cards when betrayals alter perceptions," says Louise.

* Raymond Longford Award to Don McAlpine;
* Summer City 1 & 2 for 35th anniv release;
* The Cure in the making;
* 100th movie screens at Movies Now;
* Diamonds Are For Trevor - And You;
* Tasman film fest in style;

Weekend, November 17 - 20: Dawn broke with $12.1 M in the kitty for Twilight umpteen part 1 . which accounted for most of the top 20's $16.7 M (up 137%), leaving the other 19 films gasping for air. But The Orator did better than expected with a screen avg of $9,917 in 14, for $138,836 at the weekend. The confronting drama, We Need to Talk About Kevin (not a political movie) did only slightly better with $141,429 but on 22 screens for a lower average of $6,429 - despite high profile cast like Tilda Swinton and John C. Reilly.

Win one of 20 double inseason passes to Tooomelah, courtesy Curious Films. Only at the Movies November 24.

Win one of 10 double passes in Sydney, to a special advance screening on December 6, of the new adaptation of John Le Carré's bestseller Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, starring Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, John Hurt, Toby Jones , courtesy Universal.

Movie reviews:
(UK/US, 2011) Voices of James McAvoy, Jim Broadbent, Bill Nighy, Hugh Laurie, Ashley Jensen. "Arthur Christmas is a deceptively bland title for one of the best films of the year - no matter what your age or where you are on the Santameter. It is a hero's journey, but it is the funniest film ever made about the hugely popular subject of Santa," says Andrew. "Let all your Christmases come at once with this brilliantly funny, inspired animation from the makers of Wallace & Gromit and Chicken Run," says Louise.

Movie reviews:
(Aust, 2011) Stars Daniel Connors, Danieka Connors, Christopher Edwards, Dean Daley-Jones. " .. an unflinching portrait of an Aboriginal boy's options in a small remote community," says Andrew.
INTERVIEW - The screening of the finished film for the Toomelah community was an exceptional experience, Ivan Sen tells Andrew L. Urban.

Movie reviews:
(Aust, 2011) Stars Viva Bianca, Hanna Mangan Lawrence, Belinda McClory. "Sex, violence, corruption and disillusionment are the themes of Jon Hewitt's darkly erotic thriller in which two call-girls get more than they bargain for in a tough night on the job," says Louise. "(Jon Hewitt) has made a short, sharp and edgy thriller that's as effective and engaging as his Red Ball (1999), which was set in the world of corrupt cops," says Andrew. (Releasing in Melbourne, Adelaide & Brisbane)

Movie reviews:
Robert De Niro, Monica Bellucci, Laura Chiatti, Valeria Solerino, Michele Placido, Emanuele Propizio. "Cupid's bow mainly hits its target in three separate yet connected chapters in this likeable tale about love.. By the time DeNiro comes on screen, playing a divorced American professor, it is hard to see him as a real part of the Italian ambience so beautifully created," says Louise. " .. a surprisingly clumsy screenplay from Giovanni Veronesi and Ugo Chiti, trite, old fashioned and badly executed," says Andrew.

Movie reviews:
(US, 2011) Stars Henry Cavill, Mickey Rourke, John Hurt, Stephen Dorff, Freida Pinto. "Targeted at the young, male audience who enjoyed 300 and Conan the Barbarian, Immortals delivers in similar fashion. I couldn't help but wish the story had been better told," says Louise.

Movie reviews:
(UK, 2011) Stars Simon Bird, James Bickley, Blake Harrison, Joe Thomas, Laura Haddock. "The movie is rated MA15+ suggesting it's suitable only for those over 15, but the maturity level required is much less," says Andrew.

[Coming in December, Women on the 6th Floor, stars Fabrice Luchini and Sandrine Kiberlain. "The distance between the bourgeoisie and the working class has never been so delightfully measured as in this delicious upstairs downstairs comedy," says Louise.]
Films releasing soon....

Preview trailers of the latest films on your own screen:
The Iron Lady, stars Meryl Streep;
The Fairies Christmas Ballet - at Event Cinemas;
Arthur Christmas, voices of James McAvoy, Bill Nighy;
Arrietty, from Studio Ghibli;
A Few Best Men, stars Rebel Wilson, Xavier Samuel, Olivia Newton-John;
War Horse, stars Jeremy Irvine, Emily Watson, David Thewlis;
The Adventures of Tintin, stars Jamie Bell, Andy Serkis, Daniel Craig;
Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, stars Tom Cruise;
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, stars Daniel Craig, Rooney Mara;

At a glance:
TOP 20
Short and sweet (or not) opinions on the most popular current releases. An easy reference for choosing which movie to see tonight . or tomorrow . or right now! (Occasionally we also slip in a few of the editors' favourites if they don't make the top 20...)

THE REVENANT ((1st release in Australia):
(US, 2009) Stars David Anders, Chris Wylde, Louise Griffiths, Jacy King. "They play it dead straight (pardon the pun) in this offbeat and devilishly entertaining comedic horror outing from the inspired Kerry Prior," says Andrew.

Jim Carrey, Carla Gugino, Angela Lansbury, Ophelia Lovibond. " .. for all its slickness and occasional fakery, it works because deep down it's jangling a universal nerve that is worth jangling," says Andrew.

NEEDLE - Michael Dorman, Travis Fimmel, Tahyna Tozzi, Jessica Marais. "Taking a fresh twist on the college campus serial killer sub genre of horror, John V. Soto delivers an engaging and well executed supernatural thriller," says Andrew.

SLEEPING BEAUTY - Emily Browning, Rachael Blake. "Inspired by a nightmare, this is a poetic work with dark complexities layered under the fairy tale plot," says Louise.

KUNG FU PANDA 2 - voices of Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Gary Oldman, Jackie Chan, Seth Rogen. " .. packed with kung-fu spectacle, exotic Eastern settings, a fuzzy heart and plenty of chuckles," says Louise.

HANGOVER 2 - Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Justin Bartha. "What was fresh, raucous and outrageous the first time around is now tired, contrived and boring," says Louise.

Competition winners:
To win one of 20 double inseason passes to The Orator courtesy Transmission Films, we asked: Who among family and friends is the most convincing speaker and why?
Competition winners:
SUPER 8 DVD - To win one of 10 copies of Super 8 on DVD plus a Zombie make-up kit, courtesy Paramount Home Entertainment. Super 8, we asked: What event involving family or friends would you like to film on Super 8 and why?

Every Australian film we have ever reviewed (film / DVD / video release), or have reported from the set, or featured in any way, is listed here, going back to films made even before the launch of Urban Cinefile, such as The Piano, Romper Stomper, Muriel's Wedding, The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert and dozens more. Over 450 films.

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