Welcome to our 800th weekly edition - we're still here! Thursday, July 5, 2012

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Movie reviews:
THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN
(US, 2012) Dir: Marc Webb. Stars Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Martin Sheen, C. Thomas Howell, Embeth Davidtz. "With startling visual effects giving a wondrous sense of freedom, I felt as though I was flying in some of the sequences in which Spider-Man swings his way through New York's skyscrapers like a trapeze artist on speed... Ticking all the boxes and superbly produced, the Amazing Spider-Man in 3D is amazing, indeed," says Louise. "It's escapist entertainment that doesn't warrant too much scrutiny; it is what it is, a paperback comic given a hard cover," says Andrew.

Latest:
NEWS: Gossip-free zone
BOX OFFICE: Twice weekly reports & charts.

COMPETITIONS
WOODY ALLEN: A DOCUMENTARY DVD
Iconic writer, director, actor, comedian, and musician Woody Allen allows his life and creative process to be documented on-camera for the first time. Win one of 10 DVD copies of Woody Allen: A Documentary, courtesy Transmission. Features clips from his movies and interviews with Antonio Banderas, Penelope Cruz, Scarlett Johansson, Diane Keaton, Sean Penn, Owen Wilson and Martin Scorsese. Now available on DVD.

Movie reviews:
ONCE UPON A TIME IN ANATOLIA
(Turkey, 2011) Dir: Nuri Bilge Ceylan. Stars Mohammet Uzuner, Yilmaz Erdogan, Tanr Birsel, Ahmet Mumtaz Taylan. "Mesmerising cinema ... This is a film that deserves your attention. It may be slow and the plot points obtuse, but the rewards are great," says Louise. "It's a unique film that is best enjoyed knowing very little about it - so go and take a look," says Andrew.

Movie review:
TED
(US, 2012) Dir: Seth MacFarlane. Stars Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, voice of Seth MacFarlane. "What is even more absurd than a pot-smoking, foul-mouthed, breast-squeezing teddy bear is the fact that for much of the shenanigans, we actually go along with it ... It's not quite as funny as I hoped, but if you're ready to leave commonsense at the door and enjoy some good-hearted nonsense, there's fun to be had with Ted," says Louise.

Movie review:
A HAPPY EVENT
(France, 2011) Dir: Remi Bezancon. Stars Louise Bourgoin, Pio Marmari, Josiane Balasko, Thierry Fremont. "Desire, love and madness leads to motherhood in this warts-and-all look at the A to Z of what happens to a woman when she has a baby... there's an inherent feeling of truth about the work and performances, that will resonate especially with female audiences," says Louise.

Insight:
PSYCHIC INCOME - AUSSIE FILMMAKERS' SECRET RESOURCE
The phrase 'psychic income' has all the possibilities that English words can offer - but in this context it refers to millions of dollars that have now been quantified by two specialist researchers into our filmmaking business, Simon Molloy and David Court. This edited extract is from their paper published in the 20th Edition of the classy AFTRS Lumina (June 2012), which is now available [free] at the iTunes store.

Backstory:
TODD-AO - WHAT AND WHY
Three Todd-AO films are about to be shown at special screenings in Sydney and Melbourne using new High Definition 4K DCP restorations and 5.1 channel surround sound. Our occasional contributor Patrick Conlan discovered Todd-AO when he first saw South Pacific as a teenager during its premiere run in Sydney. He developed an interest in widescreen processes and on one visit to Hollywood, talked his way into a demonstration of Todd-AO 3D - but that's another story! Here he recaps the backstory of Todd-AO and its impact on world cinema.

UPCOMING FILMS
[Coming soon, Holy Motors, stars Denis Lavant, Edith Scob, Kylie Minogue, Eva Mendes. "Raising more questions than answers, it is a circus of a film themed on death, that is all at once drama, comedy, tragedy, mystery, thriller, farce, erotica and even a musical," says Louise. "How can I be so flippant when this film is really about death? Well, for one thing, all films are about death one way or another (as Peter Weir remarked recently), and for another, Holy Motors is a joke. On us," says Andrew.]
List of films releasing soon ...

NEW TRAILERS
Preview trailers of the latest films on your own screen:
Les Miserables, stars Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway;
Here Comes the Boom, stars Kevin James;
Alex Cross, stars Tyler Perry, Matthew Fox, Ed Burns;
Total Recall, stars Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Bokeem Woodbine;
Argo, stars Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, John Goodman;
Django Unchained, stars Jamie Foxx, Leonardo diCaprio, Christoph Waltz;
Breaking Dawn: Part 2, stars Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner.

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...)

DVDS THIS WEEK
CARNAGE
Stars Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz, John C. Reilly. "Engaging, satisfying, funny and dramatic, Carnage is brisk and invigorating," says Andrew. "A whole gamut of emotions is canvassed in Roman Polanski's gripping exposť of the frailty of the human condition through the unravelling of social niceties," says Louise.

SIONE'S 2: UNFINISHED BUSINESS
Stars Oscar Knightley, Robbie Magasiva, Shimpal Lelisi, Iaheto Ah Hi, Teuia Blakely. "There is a simplicity to the film that is endearing and the expat community of New Zealanders and Polynesians will embrace it wholeheartedly, laughing approvingly of its cultural accuracy, even if it pokes gentle fun at them," says Andrew.

PROJECT X
Stars Thomas Mann, Jonathan Daniel Brown, Oliver Cooper, Dax Flame. "Officially classified MA15+, it should really be IM18- (suitable for immature audience under 18)," says Andrew.

VINCENT WANTS TO SEA
Stars Florian David Fitz, Karoline Herfurth. "Three misfits head for the Italian coast in a bid to escape from their inescapable problems in this bittersweet roadmovie that has all the ingredients to make us laugh, cry and everything in between," says Louise.

Competition winners:
BLACKTHORN DVD
To win one of 10 copies of Blackthorn starring Sam Shepard, the story of Butch Cassidy, 20 years later, courtesy Pinnacle Home Entertainment, we asked: If you were an outlaw where in the world would you prefer to safely hide out and why? Tara Nikelis (SA): In our twin teenage sons room - the mess and the teenage boy smell would keep everyone out.

AUSTRALIAN FILMS
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 (pic), Muriel's Wedding, The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert and dozens more. Over 500 films.

Travelfile:
HONG KONG - CONTEMPO AND SKY HIGH
Shortly after its first anniversary, the Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong, welcomed Andrew L. Urban and Louise Keller for 24 hours of indulgence. Unlike others in the famous chain, with their English gentleman's club ambiance, this one is ultra modern and ultra high... the highest hotel in the world.

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