Movie Talk

59th BFI London Film Festival | Friday 9th October: Pick of the Day - Salaam Bombay!

Indian director Mira Nair’s moving 1988 tribute to the resilience of Bombay’s street children, Salaam Bombay! has as its protagonist a young homeless boy (Shafiq Syed) battling to survive by his wits on the city’s teeming streets after being abandoned by the travelling circus that has been his home.

With a background in documentary filmmaking, Nair shot her debut feature, entirely on location, after first conducting workshops among Bombay’s real-life street children and using their true stories as the basis for her screenplay.

She doesn’t sweeten her depiction of poverty with feelgood fantasy (unlike the later Slumdog Millionaire to...

59th BFI London Film Festival | Thursday 8th October: Pick of the Day - Beasts of No Nation

In an unnamed African country riven by civil war, a young boy is conscripted into the ragtag ranks of a rebel militia in Beasts of No Nation, a searing movie based on Uzodinma Iweala’s acclaimed novel and directed with unblinking urgency by Cary Fukunaga, maker of the first season of True Detective.

Idris Elba is scarily charismatic as the rabble-rousing, ferociously unhinged militia leader, but the film’s most astonishing performance comes from newcomer Abraham Attah, his eyes going from sparky childhood innocence to dead-eyed horror as his child soldier, Agu, witnesses a series of atrocities, and participates in them, too.


59th BFI London Film Festival | Wednesday 7th October: Pick of the Day - Suffragette

The 59th BFI London Film Festival kicks off tonight with the European premiere of British period drama Suffragette, a stirring account of the struggle to achieve votes for women from director Sarah Gavron (Brick Lane) and screenwriter Abi Morgan (The Iron Lady).

Set in pre-First World War London in 1912 and 1913, the film is a compelling tribute to one of the unsung footsoldiers in the fight for female suffrage, rather than its upper-class leaders, and focuses on the fictional figure of East End laundry worker Maud Watts, played by Carey Mulligan, as she goes on a journey from resigned...

Miss Meadows | Film review - A prim and proper vigilante: Katie Homes' Pulp Fiction Mary Poppins


Described by one character as a “Pulp Fiction Mary Poppins”, Katie Holmes’ eponymous heroine Miss Meadows is a vigilante of a kind cinema hasn’t seen before. A prim and proper elementary school teacher, she favours long white gloves, tap shoes, good manners and the cheery farewell ‘toodle-oo’. She also packs a .25 pistol in her purse, which she uses to shoot any evildoer who dares to cross her toe-tapping path. The film’s high-risk strategy of combining breezy tweeness with black comedy won’t work for everyone, but Holmes bravely pulls off her character’s bizarre mix of perky innocence, steely ruthlessness...

Mad Max: Fury Road | DVD review - Iconic road warrior Max leaves his rivals in the dust

Thirty years after 1985’s Beyond Thunderdome, George Miller’s iconic road warrior roars into action again for his fourth screen adventure, Mad Max: Fury Road, a two-hour thrill-ride so supercharged with adrenaline-surging excitement it leaves its cinematic rivals in the dust.

Tom Hardy slips ruggedly into Mel Gibson’s battered black jacket as Max, a badass loner adrift in a barren post-apocalyptic world, but he more than meets his match in Charlize Theron’s fiercely resilient, one-armed heroine, Imperator Furiosa, whose bid to rescue a savage warlord’s five-women harem drives the plot.

The film is essentially one long, absurdly thrilling chase,...

The Martian | Film review - Mark Damon's plucky astronaut proves there's life on Mars

If the title Robinson Crusoe on Mars hadn’t already been snagged by Byron Haskin’s 1964 sci-fi film, it would be a perfect fit for Ridley Scott’s space epic The Martian, which maroons Matt Damon’s astronaut on the red planet and then shows him using Crusoe-like ingenuity in a bid to survive.

A NASA botanist on a manned mission to Mars, Damon’s Mark Watney, is left behind after his five Ares III colleagues – including Jessica Chastain’s commander and Michael Peña’s pilot – presume he has been killed during the rogue sandstorm that has forced them to blast off from...

Turbo Kid (2015) | Blu-ray release – It's BMX Bandits meets Mad Max and The Goonies

The BMX Bandits meet Mad Max in this hugely entertaining and ultra-violent love letter to the VHS era. Set in a vision of the future, Turbo Kid will be instantly recognisable to anyone who spent a wasted youth in the video store – it’s a retro-adventure for the ages!

In a post-apocalyptic future, The Kid (Munro Chambers) lives alone in his underground bunker, scavenging for relics from the old world and obsessing over comic books. But when he meets a girl named Apple (Laurence Leboeuf), it’s not long before The Kid has to face his fears and challenge...

Tomorrowland: A World Beyond | DVD review - A zippy sci-fi romp for George & Britt

Inspired by a Disneyland theme-park ride, peppy sci-fi adventure Tomorrowland: A World Beyond finds George Clooney’s grizzled, grumpy recluse teaming up with Britt Robertson’s bright-eyed, bushy-tailed teenager and an enigmatic, seemingly ageless little girl (Raffey Cassidy) for a world-saving race against time.

The nature of their quest is rather convoluted – it involves magic badges, killer robots, Hugh Laurie’s shifty scientist and a futuristic utopia gone bad - and it takes some rather cumbersome plotting to put all the pieces in place. But when things get going director Brad Bird (The Incredibles, Ratatouille, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol) gives...

Win "Mad Max: Fury Road" on Blu-ray™

To celebrate the glorious release of MAD MAX: FURY ROAD on Blu-Ray™ 3D, Blu-Ray, DVD and 4 film anthology from October 5 we’re giving you the chance to win a Blu-ray copy of the critically acclaimed adrenalin-fuelled film. 

Haunted by his turbulent past, Mad Max believes the best way to survive is to wander alone.  Nevertheless, he becomes swept up with a group fleeing across the Wasteland in a War Rig driven by an elite Imperator, Furiosa.  They are escaping a Citadel tyrannized by the Immortan Joe, from whom something irreplaceable has been taken.  Enraged, the Warlord marshals all...

The Walk | Film review - Dizzying biopic puts us in the shoes of Twin Towers wire walker Philippe Petit

Robert Zemickis’s dazzling, dizzying biopic The Walk puts us in the shoes of Philippe Petit, the Frenchman who pulled off that insanely daring high-wire walk between the twin towers of New York's World Trade Center in 1974.

The 24-year-old Petit’s feat was the subject of James Marsh’s Oscar-winning 2007 documentary Man on Wire; a film whose artful blend of archive footage and stills, dramatic re-enactments and interviews was enough to give vertigo sufferers damp palms and palpitations. Watching Zemickis’s breathtaking Imax 3D recreation of Petit’s stunt, even those with a cool head for heights will break out in cold sweats.