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ARRY PoTTER AND THE DEATHlY HALlows: PART

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................... •Director: David Yate s : Release Date: 19/11/10 :

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Well, this is it: the last six films in this franchi se have built up the heroes, and built up the vi ll ains, to the point where the only solution is an epic final showdown, and everyone involved in this film knows it. The landscape s are bleak, the tone is darker from the word go and the camera jerks about like a 'C ioverfield'-style disaster movie . This is definitely the end. Almost. From the time it was announced that the events of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows were going to take place over

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two separate films, this first entry has been eyed warily by critics and fans alike, with fans having an eve n higher expectation of the film's faithfulness to the book than they would normally, and critics being concerned that with this new freedom the makers of the film would slow the film itself down unbearably. While th ere are bound to be those who retain these criticisms when they see the movie, it strikes a good balance between the two. Structurally, this fi lm is very different from the past ones in the series, swapping the usual ' boarding school' st ructure for wild empty plains and dark cold tents, as Harry, Ron, and Hermi one

juggle hiding from a Voldemort-run wizard dictatorship, and try to find the remaining horcruxes, pieces of Voldemort's soul

on, could mean newcomers are lost - but the film casts a much more suitable, dark mood because of it, and, to be honest, if you're a

which must be destroyed. This, coupled with the fact that very little explanation is given for any of the past events that this film relies

newcomer to this series, why are you starting with the seventh film :> This new structure places a lot more emphasis

on the three lead characters than the previous films, and it is largely because of them that it survives, particularly in a long seco nd act that is light on the explosive set pieces this series has made its name on. Each of the three stars turn out career-best performances that clearly demonstrate the personal touches each have given their characters over the la st few years. Their chemistry exists with a strength that can only come at the end of a long movie franchise . Taken as an individual film, it's not perfect; by this point of the series, a lot of cas ual fans will come out complaining that it is light on the action they might

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have expected. There is a ten sion running through this film that draws towards an epic climax which doesn't arrive; dramatic moments in the film tend to be low-key and over in an instant. But if the final film delivers on the new, darker direction that thi s film takes stylistically, and its total reliance on audience and characters' own expectations, it is going to be looked back on in the series as damn near perfect, and taken together, I have a fee ling they' ll make something great. Thi s is a company that knows what it's doing. But we'll have t o wait until July to see. Tim Bates

u LEGEND OF THE GuARDIANs: THE OwLs OF GA ' HooLE

DuE DATE

ANOTHER YEAR

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.................... : Director: Tod d Phi \lips : Re lease Date: 5/11/10

................... . Due Date is exactly what a child of Train s Planes and Automobiles and The Hangover would look like. This is the story of an uptight businessman, Peter Hi ghman (Robert Dow ney Jr) who, through a series of unfortunate events, ends up on a no-fly list and finds himself havi ng t o make the rest of his journey home to his pregnant wife in a car driven by Ethan Tremb lay (Zach Ga li fianakis), the same man who got him kicked off the plane in the first place. Inevitably, things don't go according to plan . The comedy in th is film flows naturally and the gags are well timed and skilfully delivered by the

actors. The situations Peter and Eth an find themselves in are genuinely funny and watching their reactions, especially Peter's, to their increasingly dire situation creates some rea l laughout-loud moments in the audience. Both Robert Downey Jr and Zach Ga li fianakis play their characters to perfection. Downey, as the arrogant and sl ightly obnoxious businessman, becomes increasing ly frustrated with his incompetent travel companion. Zach Galifianakis might as well be playing 'Aian' in another chapter of his life either before or after the events of the Hangover. This film is a definite must watch. Drew N ichol

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•Director: Zack Sn yde r : Re lease Date : 22{11{10

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For a man who has previously directed such profound ly dark ta les as Watchmen and 300, a chi ldren's film about owls is perhaps not the most obv ious next move. On a basic level, Legend of the Guardians is an adventure story. Based on a series of novels for young adults, there are several narratives at work w ithin the film. Superficially, it's friendly animation concerning two brothers - Soren and Kludd (voiced by Jim Sturgess and Ryan Kwanten)- who, along with their younger sister, fall out of a tree and get lost. But, as to be expected from Synder, its not quite that simple.

The three youngsters are taken from home by what can only be described as borderline fascist owls. Lead by Metal Beak (Joel Edgarton) and Nyra (He len M irren), these characters are unnervingly sinister. Be low the surface there are arguably biblical allusions. Sibl ing rivalry echoes that of Cain and Abel and the legendary guardians, the Owls of Ga'Hoole, seem to be an ana logy for God . This aside, the 3D grap hics are outstanding. The attention to detail here does draw attention to the lack of it in the plot, but the animation is so good thi s almost doesn 't matter. Vim bai M uk wen ha

: Directo r: Mike Leigh : Re lease Date: 5/11/10

.• ................... . A new Mike Leigh film carries a certain weight of expectation. Reknowned for his naturalistic sty le and unconventional, often script-free approach to film-making, he's also one of Britain's most consistent directors. Another Year, a warm but bleak meditation on the inherent cruelty of advancing age, sees him continue this trend and, arguably, reach a zenith. As Gerri, masterfully played by Ruth Sheen, observes, 'life isn't always kind.' Though she and her husband Tom (Jim Broadben0 have been lucky, their friends, like chaotic divorcee Mary (Leslie Manville, in Oscar-

worthy form) and grossly overweight Ken, have not had the same fortune . Lonely, drinking hea vi ly and stuck in dull jobs, we are forced to watch as they try but fai l to improve their situations whi le time marches on, taking with it their last chances at happiness . Happy-Go -Lucky this is not. This is as emotionally devastating a film as you're like ly to see this year, and Leigh 's heavy themes are carried well by a note perfect ensemble cast. it's far from an easy watch: Mary's drunken breakdowns and spiteful attacks are particularly painful, and Leigh's close-ups will often linger far longer than is comfortable. However, if you let it, Another Year will play on your mind for days. Du ncan Vicat-Brown

Profile for Concrete - UEA's official student newspaper

Venue - Issue 248 - 23 November 2010  

Venue - Issue 248 - 23 November 2010  

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