The eight remaining finalists in The X Factor 2009 have performed some classic movie tracks in a bid to stay in the competition.

And this week’s performances caused some disagreements among the judges – with presenter Dermot O’Leary even stepping in at one point in defence of Joe McElderry, who closed the show.

Things kicked off with Stacey Solomon, performing Son Of A Preacher Man from Pulp Fiction, in a performance which gave her more room to move but divided the judges.

“I think that was your most confident looking performance,” Cheryl told her, but Simon wasn’t so sure. “I didn’t feel anything afterwards,” he said of her routine.

It was left to Olly Murs to up the tempo with his rendition of the Beatles hit Twist and Shout, from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. While his mentor Simon loved it, the other judges weren’t so sure. “I think you’re much better than that song,” Louis Walsh said, accusing Cowell of making a “silly” song choice.

And they weren’t overly impressed with Lloyd, and his performance of Stand By Me. “I think you’re out of your depth,” Louis told him.

Jamie Archer’s performance of Roy Orbison’s Crying was far better received, with Cowell calling it his “best performance by a mile” – and Lucie Jones also fared well with her track This Is Me from the Disney film Camp Rock.

“This is the first time for me you have made yourself relevant as a pop artist,” Cowell said.

Danyl Johnson, meanwhile, sported a new haircut and delivered a performance of Prince‘s Purple Rain that had the judges raving. “I really like your demeanour tonight,” Cheryl told him, “you’re not the broken man we saw last week.”

But once again, all eyes were on John and Edward to see how they could top last week’s rendition of We Will Rock You – and this week, they turned in a performance of Ghostbusters, complete with character costumes and backpacks.

Dannii was unconvinced. “This is a singing competition and you either talk or rap, so I can’t imagine what you guys would release if you won it.”

However Simon finally had some words of praise for the pair. “I think we’ve established that you can’t sing but this was actually a good song for you. Based on some of the horrors we’ve seen before this was sort of good!”

Louis, meanwhile, took the opportunity to take a swipe at Prime Minister Gordon Brown who said during the week that he thought the twins were “not very good”.

“So Gordon Brown and Simon Cowell have something in common,” he said. “Neither of them know what the public want.”

The final performance of the night, from Joe McElderry, once again divided the judges.

“You are the best male vocalist in the competition,” Dannii told him following his performance of the Lion King classic Circle Of Life – but Louis had doubts. “I think you’re more musical theatre than pop star,” he said, “and we are looking for a pop star.”

However Dermot O’Leary leapt to the teenager’s defence, saying he was a “well-rounded pop star”, and Louis hit back. “You’re not a judge, you’re a presenter,” he snapped.

Simon, meanwhile, had some words for him. “You’ve insulted our Prime Minister tonight, you’ve insulted the public,” he said, “I think you should apologise.”

The results will be revealed on Sunday evening’s show.