Film Screening 20th February, 2009

Poster for Burn After Reading

Burn After Reading 

8:00 PM, 20th February, 2009

  • MA
  • 96 mins
  • 2008
  • Ethan Coen & Joel Coen
  • Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
  • George Clooney, Frances McDormand, John Malkovich, Tilda Swinton, Brad Pitt

Chad Feldheimer (Pitt), a moronic, gum chewing fitness trainer, pairs up with co-worker Linda Litzke (McDormand), a cosmetic surgery obsessed, lonely single woman, and together they take on the CIA in a quirky, action-packed black comedy.

Stumbling upon an ex-CIA agent's memoirs, the fitness centre duo create havoc as they hatch many a cunning plan to profit from their perceived good fortune. Blackmail, murder, paranoia and adultery are intricately woven together in this twisted story about the reign of supreme idiocy in the modern era. Cheekily trading on some hilarious contemporary stereotypes, the film cleverly provides a satirical critique of the stupidity of the games big people play.

Pitt is side-splittingly funny and the rest of the star-studded cast keeps the laughs rolling. There is no shortage of surprises in this film; one minute you'll be cacking yourself laughing and the next you'll be clutching your seat in horror. Every time you think the plot can't possibly get more convoluted, it somehow does.

Burn After Reading brings you the Coen brothers at their best. It's fast, it's funny and it's in your face! Its tagline 'intelligence is relative' is a classic pun that says it all!

Nandhini Nagaratnam

Poster for Hellboy II: The Golden Army

Hellboy II: The Golden Army 

9:51 PM, 20th February, 2009

  • M
  • 119 mins
  • 2008
  • Guillermo del Toro
  • Guillermo del Toro
  • Ron Perlman, Selma Blair, Seth MacFarlane, Jeffrey Tambor, John Hurt

I liked this bon mot in last semester's ANUFG preview of Hellboy II: The Golden Army - "He's big. He's red. He's Hellboy." Here's another: "Saving the world is a hell of a job." Really, that is all you need to know, but for pedants who like a little more detail, read on.

The film continues the theme of the first movie, with the demon superhero siding with humanity against an evil elf. The elf breaks an ancient pact between humans and other earthly creatures and declares war, intending to release The Golden Army - fighting machines which have the potential to destroy the human race. If you want to know more, then come and see the movie. Can't guess the end? Well, we're all still here, aren't we?

The film's director? He's Guillermo Del Toro. The critical and popular success of Del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth saw him tapped to be the director of the forthcoming film series The Hobbit. It also meant the green light was given to Del Toro to realise a Hellboy sequel ((ndash)) essentially an expanded version which is greater than the original movie. Del Toro wrote the original story and the screenplay and, as a talented amateur artist, he also had a hand in designing the sets and costumes. These are exquisitely strange, and it is worth seeing the film for this visual feast alone.

Richard Hills