Welcome to our 819th weekly edition; Thursday, November 15, 2012

New on VisionStream: all the latest clips, interviews, extra trailers and background features. Over 100 videos.

Insight:
ARTHOUSE IS NOT DEAD - EVERYWHERE
You could go a whole year and see hundreds of movies - in cinemas - without seeing a single Hollywood movie, says Andrew L. Urban, and arthouse cinema in general is alive and well - but not everywhere.

Latest:
NEWS: Gossip-free zone
* Crossing The Ice, doco about Australian adventurers Jones and Castrission's epic in Antarctica, wins record 3 awards at BANFF;
* Beresford honoured by screen composers;
* Record crowds at Canberra Filmfest ;
* The King is Dead! Crowned in St. Tropez;
* Blake Borcich of Xavier College in Melbourne and Kate Cornish from Gosford High win Sydney Film School Scholarships;
* American Mary debuts at Dendy Newtown.

BOX OFFICE: Reports & charts every Monday & Thursday (after 4pm)
Black comedy Seven Psychopaths opened well on 186 (avge $3,608) for the weekend, well ahead of negatively reviewed Alex Cross on 165 (avge $2,232), while The Sessions did well on 57 (avge $4,680). The Master had the 2nd highest screen average of $6,910 on 22, followed by The Intouchables with $6,019 on 88. Cold War on 7 screens too $8,574 avge. The top 20 was down 16% to $6.96 M.

COMPETITION
FRIENDS WITH KIDS DVD
Win one of 10 copies of Friends With Kids on DVD, starring Jennifer Westfeldt, Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Jon Hamm, Chris O'Dowd, Megan Fox and Edward Burns, courtesy Roadshow Home Entertainment. Available to rent and own on DVD, Blul-ray & Digital Download.

Movie review:
THE TWILIGHT SAGA: BREAKING DAWN PART 2
(US, 2012) Dir: Bill Condon. Stars Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner. Vampire Irina believes the Cullens' baby could soon challenge the power and existence of the Volturi - and gathers an army to destroy the potential threat, while Bella and Edward prepare to fight for survival - The Verdict

Movie reviews:
ROBOT & FRANK
(US, 2012) Dir: Jake Schreier. Stars Frank Langella, James Marsden, Liv Tyler, Susan Sarandon and voice of Peter Sarsgaard. "Simply oozing with charm, this sci-fi buddy movie about a robot and an ageing ex-jewel thief with memory issues has heart when you least expect it, allowing its bittersweet arrow to gently trigger our emotions," says Louise. "More concerned with the heart than the robotics, Robot & Frank is a buddy movie in which memory is a prized thing. And it's certainly memorable," says Andrew.

Movie reviews:
THE ANGELS' SHARE
(UK, 2012) Dir: Ken Loach. Stars Paul Brannigan, John Henshaw, Gary Maitland, Jasmine Riggins. "The spirit and the flesh are willing in this mischievous, bittersweet comedy in which single malt whisky, an ex crim and second chances come together in an interesting blend," says Louise. "'Ken Loach does hope' could be the headline a Fleet Street sub might slap on a review of The Angels' Share, in which a young Scot accidentally finds salvation and a way out of his trapped life of crime and misery," says Andrew.

Movie review:
DEAD EUROPE
(Aust, 2012) Dir: Tony Krawits. Stars Ewen Leslie, Marton Csokas, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Jean-Francois Balmer. "Dense and intense, Dead Europe is cinematically alive, with director Tony Krawitz sure of his footing as he takes us in close to his characters, prying, probing, pricking . and involving us at a deep emotional level. This helps to smooth over the film's rougher story patches, where elements that may have been irresistible from the novel don't always fit snugly into the narrative," says Andrew.

Movie reviews:
THE FIRST FAGIN
(Aust, 2012) Dir: Alan Rosenthal, Helen Gaynor. Stars Ryk Goddard, Carrie McLean. "Feeding our curiosity with its potential as the source material for the Fagin character in Oliver Twist, the film has a deeper resonance with its Australian connection. As for our sympathies, unlike the Fagin of Dickens' world, they tend to favour Ikey," says Andrew.

Movie reviews:
GOD BLESS AMERICA
(US, 2011) Stars Joel Murray, Tara Lynne Barr. "...a sobering comedy, a darkly comic tragedy and a socially valuable scream that demands our attention (and that of the Americans). He shows that deep down, for all the whoops of God Bless America across the nation, it's actually 'godless America'," says Andrew. "There are moments worthy of praise and the grey matter becomes agitated with food for thought. But although it promises much, the film ultimately fails to deliver the substance, with the stream of deadly bullets making a goddamn mess but never quite hitting the artery," says Louise. (Releasing in Melb, Adel, Hobart; Sydney release date Dec 6; Perth release Dec 13)

Movie review:
TWO LITTLE BOYS
(NZ, 2012) Dir: Robert Sarkies. Stars Bret McKenzie, Hamish Blake, Maake Pohatu, Filip Berg. "The major flaw in this decidedly black New Zealand comedy with a tasty sense of the ridiculous is that the central odd-couple relationship at the film's centre is never properly established. Even the deliciously twisted aspects ... tend to fall flat," says Louise.

Digital download:
WHAT ABOUT DICK
The deliriously, dirtily funny digital download release of Eric Idle's What About Dick? is a milestone of madness as only the Brits (of Spamalot) can do it. It's sheer and utter madness, as Andrew L. Urban discovers. (Available at whataboutdick.com from Nov. 13, 2012 - $6

UPCOMING FILMS
[Coming soon, Love is all you Need, stars Pierce Brosnan, Trine Dyrholm. "If love is a potent cocktail, it would be fair to say that the resulting froth intensifies when shaken. This froth, comprising the joys, sorrows, mysteries and ironies of love, is the subject of Susanne Bier's scrumptious romantic comedy set on the dazzling Italian Riviera and as a result, happily puts us through the emotional wringer," says Louise.]
List of films releasing in November

NEW TRAILERS
Preview trailers of the latest films on your own screen:
World War Z, stars Brad Pitt;
Lincoln, stars Daniel Day Lewis, Sally Field;
Love Story, stars Florian Habicht, Masha Yakovenko;
Quartet, stars Maggie Smith, Billy Connolly;
Skyfall, stars Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes;
Anna Karenina, stars Keira Knightley,
Django Unchained, stars Jamie Foxx, Leonardo diCaprio, Christoph Waltz.

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
ARTHUR CHRISTMAS
Voices of James McAvoy, Jim Broadbent, Bill Nighy, Hugh Laurie. "Arthur Christmas is a deceptively bland title for one of the best films of the year," says Andrew.

BAD KARMA
Stars Ray Liotta, Dominic Purcell, Vanessa Gray, Aaron Pedersen. "Concise storytelling and good direction set out the story elements simply, making it easy for us to get involved," says Louise.

THE PERFECT HOLIDAY
Stars Queen Latifah, Morris Chestnut, Gabrielle Union. "the story is well crafted with plenty of twists and turns, and all the performances are terrific," says Andrew.

NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN
Stars Ryan Kwanten, Sarah Snook, Ryan Corr, Bojana Novakovic. "The impressive screenplay and the fine performances combine with Peter Templeman's confident direction for a satisfying result," says Andrew.

BORN TO BE WILD 3D
Stars Documentary featuring Birute Mary Galdikas, Dame Daphne Sheldrick. "There are plenty of ooh and ah moments in this splendid documentary for all ages in which we are privileged to enter a special world where orphaned baby elephants and orangutans are nurtured," says Louise.

ELENA
Stars Yelena Lyadova, Andrey Smirnov, Nadezhda Markina. "Elena is an acquired taste, a film that doesn't provide cheap thrills or easy, pat resolutions, nor any moral certainty," says Andrew.

Competition winners:
SNOW WHITE & THE HUNTSMAN DVD
To win Snow White and the Huntsman on DVD, courtesy Universal Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, we asked: If you were making an excuse for not having killed Snow White as ordered by your Queen, what would it be? Glenda J McDonnell (VIC) says: My GPS needed updating and I ended up in a Galaxy Far Far away. I figured; 'Ewoks'...`Dwarves`... pretty close, so I killed Darth Vader instead!
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, Muriel's Wedding, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (pic) 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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