Reel magic: The latest cinema releases in UAE

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Reel magic: The latest cinema releases in UAE

David Light delves through the UAE’s latest cinema releases

By David Light (senior Reporter)

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Published: Thu 26 Feb 2015, 10:04 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 9:31 PM

Focus

Like Minidisk players, Audi TTs and Oakley sunglasses, Will Smith was at the height of his powers in the early 2000s. Unfortunately with more recent releases including Men in Black 3, After Earth and now Focus, his career seems fit for the history books.

Con movie Focus looks like a loose melange of classic The Sting and fun romp Ocean’s 11, but fails to reach the enjoyable heights of either. It may be a little bit slick, contain a number of twists and have likeable Aussie Home and Away alumnus Margot Robbie in it, but it also has Will Smith doing what Will Smith does... not much. The Pursuit of Happyness aside, you can give his character any old name, be it Hitch or James West, and he’ll just be Will Smith in various costumes.

Even Enemy of the State lost some credibility with him in the title role. It’s not that he’s terrible, he’s simply monotonous. Like comedian Bill Hader would say, “he’s like the Daniel Day-Lewis of only doing one thing.”

 In short, if you want something brainless, go see it. It has all the tinsel of a snooze-inducing B-grade action film with a marginally bigger budget.

Rottentomatoes.com has this at a woeful 56% and IMDB hasn’t rated it.

 

Trivia

• Rosamund Pike and Jennifer Lawrence were offered the lead female role.

 

Protector 2

Remember the first time you saw the YouTube clip of the panda sneezing? A same reaction was evoked watching the trailer for Protector 2. Heartbreakingly bad. We’re more likely to take on an international crime gang with our martial arts skills than watch this tragic work.

Rottentomatoes has this at 20% and IMDB gives it 5.2

 

Trivia

• Did you know you should watch anything else apart from this? 

 

Black or White

What is it with Kevin Costner? If it were a choice between watching the 60-year old on film or observing a 60-year old film develop, we’d be first down the Kodak shop dark room. However, and this is a big however, Black or White doesn’t look that bad and we’ll tell you why. Kevin Costner is supposed to be boring in it. He plays the fusty, rich, fish-out-of-water grandfather charged with bringing up his African-American granddaughter Jillian alone after her mother (his daughter) and her grandmother (his wife) pass away. However, the plot doesn’t exactly follow the goofy Big Daddy formula. Jillian’s other grandmother, played by Octavia Spencer, and father, who are both African-American, are still alive and petition for custody. So begins a film investigating the complicated topic of racial tension and mixed-race relationships in the US.

 Sometimes light-hearted, occasionally hard-hitting, it may just be worth a go.

Unfortunately critics on rottentomatoes.com have this at 37% but the audience vote it at 72%. IMDB gives it 6.4

 

Trivia

• Kevin Costner wanted this movie to be made so much he paid for it.

 

Serena

Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, the pair that did so well in Silver Linings Playbook are back together again in Serena. Unlike the last outing, though, it doesn’t look that good.

 Thrown together in’30s North Carolina, timber magnate George Pemberton (Cooper) runs into vivacious Serena (Lawrence) and embark on a whirlwind romance ending up in a hasty marriage. Given it’s the Depression and Pemberton is less than truthful, events begin to unravel fast.

That’s about all we can say regarding the plot, partly because we don’t want to give anything away and partly because life’s too short.

 People who go to see this will have to be fans of the lead actors and will just go along anyway regardless of what’s written. We’ll just say for those on the fence, watch the trailer first.

IMDB gives this 5.5 and rottentomatoes is at 29%

 

Trivia

• Angelina Jolie was to star in this, but thought better of it . 


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