Home' Scoop : Scoop 50 Summer 2009 Contents 40 SCOOP SUMMER 2009
with sarah szabo
Suave corporate downsizer George Clooney touches down long enough to deliver bad news and moti-
vational platitudes before clocking up more frequent flyer points for the next leg of golden handshakes.
Jason Reitman's follow up to the Oscar-winning Juno is scarily relevant for the times, and smartly layered,
delivering a rom-com dramedy mix, which is both entertaining and brain engaging. Clooney's Ryan
Bingham has perfected the art of flying etiquette -- best seats, VIP lounges, high-end hotels and no-strings
liaisons; it's a neat kind of life, efficiently packed into one carry-on bag. It's also about to reward him with
his 10 million high miler point on the airline loyalty program -- a cherished goal abruptly threatened by a
new efficiency expert with a bright idea to bring him down to earth. Vera Farmiga, Jason Bateman and
Anna Kendrick also shine.
Fantastic Mr Fox
Determinedly old-school Wes Anderson (The Royal
Tenenbaums) puts his quirkily retro stamp with lash-
ings of wit and whimsy on his stop-motion animation
adaptation of Roald Dahl's Fantastic Mr Fox. They
don't make them like this any more but the less-is-
more approach of jerky motion, real fur on puppets
and in-camera effects backed with Anderson's trade-
mark attention to detail and indie sensibility make
it a must see. George Clooney, Meryl Streep and
Willem Dafoe provide the voices alongside regulars
Bill Murray, Owen Wilson and Jason Schwartzman.
The Hurt Locker
Director Kathryn Bigelow (Point Break) has a reputa-
tion for testosterone-tinged action and this has
critics throwing superlatives like live grenades, which
fits the bill for this teeth grindingly tense war thriller.
Forget politics, this gets straight to the heart of the
matter as you take a tour of duty with an embedded
US bomb squad -- men routinely placed in unthink-
able danger. Doco style, no-nonsense authenticity
and little-known actors in major roles puts you right
into the "hurt locker" itself -- a psychological state
that envelops people in great danger.
Sherlock Holmes -- Guy Ritchie-style -- has plenty of
gentlemanly derring-do, and some ungentlemanly
trouser shedding -- all in the name of getting to the
bottom of it, my dear Watson. Ritchie's Sherlock
Holmes is a rollicking ride through Victoriana as
Holmes (Robert Downey Jr) and Watson (Jude Law)
take on a nemesis whose dastardly plans threaten
to destroy the country. It has action, adventure,
mystery and a wicked dash of comedy -- enough to
make Sir Conan Doyle spin in his grave. But jolly
good fun all the same.
Also coming your way
PICK of the
FLICKS UP IN THE AIR
WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE Spike Jonze
eats up Maurice Sendak's beloved tale and
brings to life Max and his collection of "id"-
controlled wild things.
INVICTUS Clint Eastwood on a directorial roll
with Morgan Freeman playing Nelson Mandela,
who believes sport can unite his country. Based
on the true tale of the 1995 Rugby World Cup.
THE ROAD John Hillcoat's intensely bleak, yet
powerful, adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's
Pulitzer Prize-winning tale sees Viggo Mortensen
as grizzled survivor of an apocalypse. Not for the
faint of heart.
PRECIOUS Based on the novel Push by
Sapphire. Harrowing urban nightmare as an
abused young outsider navigates her miserable
circumstances. Outstanding performances make
it the little film that could.
AVATA R Sam Worthington stars as a paralysed
soldier who finds his feet (and tall blue love
interest) via an alien warrior avatar on a hostile
planet. James Cameron back with a 3D sci-fi
THE LOVELY BONES Peter Jackson's adaptation
of the acclaimed Alice Sebold novel sees Saoirse
Ronan as young girl who watches over her family
and murderer after her death.
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