Always good when new movie release day comes around – let’s check out what is one this week.


Top of the list to head to the cinema for this week is VENUS IN FUR (La Vénus à la fourrure). It’s a new movie from Roman Polanski (The Pianist) in which an actress attempts to convince a director how she’s perfect for a role in his upcoming production. Doesn’t sound much. But Variety’s Scott Foundas sees it as A delightfully intricate battle of wits and wills in which the question of who’s directing/seducing/torturing whom remains constantly shifting open to interpretation.


From the Australian director, Rolf De Heer (Ten Canoes), comes CHARLIE’S COUNTRY. ‘Blackfella Charlie is out of sorts. The intervention is making life more difficult on his remote community, what with the proper policing of whitefella laws now. So Charlie takes off, to live the old way, but in so doing sets off a chain of events in his life that has him return to his community chastened, and somewhat the wiser.’ – written by Cannes Film Festival

THE FRENCH MINISTER (Quai d’Orsay) is all about Alexandre Taillard de Vorms [who] is tall and impressive, a man with style, attractive to women. He also happens to be the Minister of Foreign Affairs for the land of enlightenment: France. With his silver mane and tanned, athletic body, he stalks the world stage, from the floor of the United Nations in New York to the powder keg of Oubanga. There, he calls on the powerful and invokes the mighty to bring peace, to calm the trigger-happy, and to cement his aura of Nobel Peace Prize winner-in-waiting. Alexandre Taillard de Vorms is a force to be reckoned with, waging his own war backed up by the holy trinity of diplomatic concepts: legitimacy, lucidity and efficacy. He takes on American neo-cons, corrupt Russians and money-grabbing Chinese. Perhaps the world doesn’t deserve France’s magnanimousness, but his art would be wasted if just restricted to home turf. Enter the young Arthur Vlaminck, graduate of the elite National School of Administration, who is hired as head of “language” at the foreign ministry. In other words, he is to write the minister’s speeches. But he also has to learn to deal with the sensibilities of the boss and his entourage, and find his way between the private secretary and the special advisers who stalk the corridors of the Quai d’Orsay – the ministry’s home – where stress, ambition and dirty dealing are the daily currency. But just as he thinks he can influence the fate of the world, everything seems threatened by the inertia of the technocrats.
– Written by Sundance Selects


Looking for some drama and romance? REACHING FOR THE MOON might fit the bill. A chronicle of the tragic love affair between American poet Elizabeth Bishop and Brazilian architect Lota de Macedo Soares. Critics are, on the average, less enthusiastic about this than the general public. For example, this is what Los Angeles Times’s Robert Abele thinks: Everything ultimately gives way to the stately, simplistic, inevitable pace of by-the-numbers biopics, from some woefully tinny, hit-and-run screenwriting to the usual difficulties surrounding the dramatization of an author’s craft.

WORDS AND PICTURES brings two interesting actors together – Clive Owen and Juliette Binoche – but has a strange premise for a plot. An art instructor and an English teacher form a rivalry that ends up with a competition at their school in which students decide whether words or pictures are more important. Not sure about this one. Movie Nation’a Roger Moore suggests that Words and Pictures is the cloying title of a cloying little comedy made by talented people who, not that long ago, deserved better than this, and knew it. General public are averaging just above 3 stars so who knows?!


And, finally, one to avoid – SEX TAPE with Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel. A married couple wake up to discover that the sex tape they made the evening before has gone missing, leading to a frantic search for its whereabouts. According to the trailers, it ends up on the internet. A very contemporary premise, I suppose. Hard to tell at the moment but average critic score is *1/2 stars! Give it a miss!

That’s it for this week. See you at the movies!

NB: synopses of movies are adapted from IMDB. Opinions are mine unless quoted from cited sources.