Welcome to our 810th weekly edition; Thursday, September 13, 2012

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Movie reviews:
BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD
(US, 2012) Dir: Benh Zeitlin. Stars Quvenzhané Wallis, Dwight Henry, Levy Easterly. "Allegorical, wild and sometimes unfathomable ... a perfect festival film in that it experiments with cinema in its exploration of man's universe - from a rather doomed point of view," says Andrew. "Benh Zeitlin's directorial debut is a piercing arrow to the heart, as he makes his poetic statement about the plight of the changing world and the integral meshing of all the pieces of the universe which need to fit together," says Louise.

Latest:
NEWS: Gossip-free zone
* Taiwan's Oscar entry, historical epic Warriors of the Rainbow, opens;
* All hail The Master, Pieta at Venice;
* Daniel Craig for Sydney premiere of Skyfall;
* Antenna doco fest tickets on sale for Sydney dates;
* Shortland at Q&A for Lore;
* Film funding short course at AFTRS;

BOX OFFICE: Reports & charts every Monday & Thursday (after 4pm)
Not often we see two Australian films in the top 3 on this chart; between them, Kath & Kimderella and The Sapphires grossed $2.9 M at the weekend, a third of the top 20's $8.6 M (down 11%).

COMPETITIONS
96 MINUTES DVD
Win one of 5 DVD copies of 96 MINUTES, starring Brittany Snow, Evan Ross, Christian Serratos, J. Michael Trautmann, David Oyelowo, courtesy Anchor Bay Entertainment Australia. Out on DVD and Blu-ray on September 12.

LAVAZZA ITALIAN FILM FESTIVAL 2012 PASSES
Win one of 20 double passes to the Lavazza Italian Film Festival for a session of choice, courtesy Palace Cinemas. Passes are valid nationally and valued at $39 each. Melbourne: 19 Sept - 9 Oct; Sydney: 20 Sept - 10 Oct; Brisbane: 3 Oct - 21 Oct; Adelaide: 11 Oct - 28 Oct; Perth: 11 Oct - 24 Oct; ACT: 28 Nov - 12 Dec.

Italian Film Festival 2012:
AWARDED AND ACCLAIMED
This year's Lavazza Italian Film Festival around Australia will screen 30 films, including Caesar Must Die (pic), which won the Golden Bear at this year's Berlin Film Festival; Andrea Segre's award-winning gem Shun Li And The Poet; acclaimed Italian-Turkish director Ferzan Ozpetek's Magnificent Presence; Golden Globe-winning The Entrepreneur; Marco Tullio Giordana's Piazza Fontana: The Italian Conspiracy; Matteo Garrone's Reality.

Inaugural Polish Film Festival:
WORLD PREMIERE LAUNCHES POLISH FILM FEST
New films and classics from Poland feature in the inaugural Polish Film Festival, including the world premiere of My Father's Bike (pic).

Movie reviews:
MARWENCOL
(US, 2010) Dir: Jeff Malmberg. Documentary featuring Mark Hogancamp. "Extraordinary, astonishing, revealing, unique ..." says Andrew. "Truly inspiring," says Louise. (available on iTunes, BigPond Movies, Google Play, Foxtel On Demand)

Movie review:
MADAGASCAR 3: EUROPE'S MOST WANTED
(US, 2012) Dir: Eric Darnell, Noah Baumbach. Voices of Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett Smith, Sacha Baron Cohen, Cedric the Entertainer. "A vivacious 3D kaleidoscope of colour, dazzle and show, this third in the franchise simply bursts with joie de vivre, goofy humour and innovative ideas," says Louise.

Movie reviews:
THE WATCH
(US, 2012) Dir: Akiva Schaffer. Stars Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill, Richard Ayoade. "Bursting with penis jokes, this low-laugh, low-brow comedy hovers somewhere between mash-up and alien mush," says Louise. "Four likeable guys and fine screen actors make a meal of this loony, gross-out sci-fi comedy, but you wonder if it isn't time for them to leave behind juvenile alley," says Andrew.

Australian premiere release - on DVD:
96 MINUTES
(US, 2011) Dir: Aimee Lagos. Brittany Snow, Christian Serratos, J. Michael Trautmann, Evan Ross, David Ovelowo. "Poignant and powerful, 96 Minutes gives us an insight into not just what happens but why it happens, in the belly of urban America when young men drift into bad company," says Andrew.
FEATURE
American filmmaker Aimee Lagos absorbed many of the confronting stories she heard while working at severely disadvantaged inner city schools - and was compelled to make a film based on them. She explains her motivation and approach in this Director's Statement to her film, 96 Minutes - which can be a very long time in life.

UPCOMING FILMS
[Coming in November, The Sessions, starring John Hawkes. Helen Hunt, William H. Macy. "Ben Lewin's candid film, peppered with a wry sense of humour, takes a blatantly raw look at the most complex issue known to man - sex, attraction and love - weaving into the mix issues of guilt, anxiety and pleasure and leaving us profoundly moved," says Louise. "Sexual behaviour and sexual life is something we all understand in some of its many forms - but maybe not this one," says Andrew.]
List of films releasing in September

NEW TRAILERS
Preview trailers of the latest films on your own screen:
Shadow Dancer, stars Clive Owen, Andrea Riseborough, Gillian Anderson;
Twilight: Breaking Dawn (2), stars Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart;
Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, stars Jeremy Renner, Gemma Arterton;
Madagascar 3, voices of Ben Stiller, Chris Rock;
Anna Karenina, stars Keira Knightley,
The Words, stars Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana, Dennis Quaid, Jeremy Ironse;
Skyfall, stars Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes;

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 OUT THIS WEEK
CAFÉ DE FLORE
Stars Vanessa Paradis, Kevin Parent, Evelyne Brochu, Helene Florent. "Love, destiny and dark clouds swirl together ominously as resentment, communication breakdown and desperation shake hands," says Louise.

KING OF DEVIL'S ISLAND
Stars Stellan Skarsgård, Benjamin Helstad, Kristoffer Joner, Trond Nilssen, Morten Lovstad. "Honest and authentic, the filmmaker takes his subject seriously and gives us a complex and thought provoking film," says Andrew.

ROMANTICS ANONYMOUS
Stars Benoît Poelvoorde, Isabelle Carre. "As sweet as chocolate that's spiced with bitterness of varying degrees, this whimsical charmer about two eccentrics weighed down by anxiety, is a delight," says Louise.

SAFE
Stars Jason Statham, Catherine Chan, Chris Sarandon. "Bullets ricochet, punches fly and the body count mounts in this Jason Statham actioner in which the Triad, the Russian Mafia and corrupt cops come to blows," says Louise.

Competition winners:
HIT & RUN
To win one of 25 double inseason passes to Hit & Run, starring Dax Shepard, Kristen Bell and Bradley Cooper, courtesy Pinnacle Films, we asked: Who among family and friends would you have as the getaway driver in a heist and why? Lup Wai (WA): One of my ex-colleagues who is a Police officer and pursuit driving qualified. Plus no one would chase a cop car.
THE WOMAN IN BLACK DVD
To win one of 10 DVDs of Woman in Black, starring Daniel Radcliffe, Janet McTeer, Ciaran Hinds, courtesy Roadshow, we asked: With whom would you like to watch this DVD and why? Peter Gasiorowski (SA) says: My wonderful ageing Mum. She loves spooky movies.

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:
GILLETTE CASTLE: CONNECTICUT, USA
Celebrating its 10th anniversary (in 2012) since reopening to the public in 2002, Gillette Castle in Connecticut now attracts over 300,000 visitors a year - yet it's virtually unknown internationally as a tourist attraction, with access to it only via beautiful, winding country roads. Andrew L. Urban drove out to see what's so special about it.

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