ET at The Astor

Quick Review : Classic

Not So Quick Review : 20 years after it’s first release this film is still magical.

The Astor, J 20

Is there any need to review ET? Surely not.

Now The Astor, that’s worth the review. A lovely old building, sitting on a busy corner at the wrong end of Chapel Street that can attract a crowd on a bitterly cold Melbourne night. All you have to say is ‘I’m going to The Astor tonight’ for people to comment on what a wonderful place it is. No one will ask what you are seeing, just going is the thing.

The welcoming lobby, complete with couches, the upstairs foyer lined with palms, over stuffed arm chairs and even more couches, the chandeliers, the music (live piano if you are really lucky), the best choc-tops in the world and a cinema cat that owns the building. The staff, obviously completely unaware of the wonderful position in which they find themselves, have perfected the urban cool disinterested attitude necessary for them to tell their friends at uni “I work in cinema”. I guess most of them are working on the great Australian screen play. There is a light show as the curtain rises before the first feature, although most people talk through it, and with Melbourne’s largest screen the movies are sight to behold. If only they could fix the leg room issue. Anyone above dwarf is squirming half way through the second feature.

The guy in the line for tickets asked the strangest thing. ET was screening on a double bill with ‘Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade’. Just as we walked away he said “do they show them one after the other?”. How do you respond to that? ‘No sir, concurrently?’ or perhaps ‘No sir, one before the other.’.



Quick Review : Quaint with a capital Q
Not So Quick Review : This movie is 100% heart, the most charming two hours you could ever spend in a cinema.

The Sun (Yarraville), 2.00pm

On an otherwise dismal afternoon this was more than a ray of sunshine, it was a full on summers afternoon.

The story can be described so simply : a waitress falls for a mystery man, but will they ever find each other let alone love? But that is not important for this is not a movie about story. It’s a movie about emotions and feelings; it’s a movie that celebrates the human spirit like none you have seen before. The magic that Audrey Tautou brings to the title suggest she was born just for this part.

Don’t miss this film, you will truly feel better for having seen it.

Minority Report

Quick Review : Leave with 20 minutes to go & leave happy.

Not So Quick Review : Steven Spielberg makes great movies, if he can only stop his obsession with happy families they would be classics.

Village Sunshine, Cinema 20, E13 6.30

Minority Report, for the most part, is a wonderfully entertaining visually stunning Sci Fi thriller. The ‘unmost’ part is the last twenty or so minutes when Spielberg loses his way.

Tom Cruise plays a detective attached to the ‘Pre Crime’ unit – they arrest people before they have a chance to commit the crime. These crimes are seen in advance by a trio of ‘pre-cogs’. There is much intrigue, running, great chases and a wonderful vision of the future which would make for a fantastic film.

If you sense a however looming at the end of that sentence you are correct. The last twenty minutes abandon all that has gone before and we are treated to another Spielbergian homily on the value of family. It also features perhaps the worse case of needless exposition for many a year.

Please Steve, if I may be so bold, take the risk next time. Make us think.
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Quick Review : Over rated.

Not So Quick Review : Attack of The Clones was better.

Village Jam Factory, Cinema 7 K11 8.00 PM

Mark and I toddled off to see Spider-Man last night. With his countdown to America looming this may be one of the last times for a while. Anyways, for a Monday night the cinema had a few people in it and Cinema 7 is one of the larger ones at the Jam Factory with great sound.

Movie was ho-hum. Sure Spidey looked cool, and Kirsten Dunst is drop dead gorgeous, and it was witty in places, and the villain was evil, and the effects were amazing but it was still lacking something. Maybe the word I’m looking for is ‘heart’. Overly ponderous in ramming home it’s moral ambiguity, repetitively preachy (just how many times do we need to be reminded that ‘with great power comes great responsibilty’?) and two obvious post 11th September re-writes reveals a little too much calculation for my liking.

Spidey is left angst ridden at the end but it’s a very Hollywood angst, we sympathise but don’t care – just show us him doing a loop the loop one more time.

On second thoughts, don’t.

Shooting Fish

Shopping with Mark last night I found the soundtrack to one of my all time favourite films, ‘Shooting Fish’. Amazingly (well not really seeing as how Mark and I were the only people in Australia to see it) it was only $9.99 at Virgin. I’ve been hunting for this CD for ages and to find it in the bargain bin…..guess I shouldn’t be surprised as most of the Pet Shop Boys back catalogue was there too. Mark and I both felt a little old.
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