Simon Carver reviews a new animated version of the Nativity...
Imagine, if you will, Groundhog Day mixed with Love Actually with a sprinkling of Notting Hill and you get an idea of what to expect from Richard Curtis’s latest film, About Time. It has all the usual Curtis charm together with some of his idiosyncrasies: eccentric characters, beautiful middle class homes and lives and posh people swearing.
Rating 7½/10 12A 123 mins
Imagine, if you will, Groundhog Day mixed with Love Actually with a sprinkling of Notting Hill and you get an idea of what to expect from Richard Curtis’s latest film, About Time. It has all the usual Curtis charm together with some of his idiosyncrasies: eccentric characters, beautiful middle class homes and lives and posh people swearing. It even has an actor in the main part who sounds just like Hugh Grant. Like Love Actually a strong message is preached at the end, but there was something missing. As one might expect from the man who gave us the last episode of Blackadder Goes Forth, there were a number of moving moments. However, there weren’t enough and it wasn’t either funny or interesting enough to stop this viewer from remembering just how good Groundhog Day is. On a positive note, About Time definitely throws up some interesting ideas about how we live and would make a good church small group evening out.
Justin and the Knights of Valour
Rating 5/10 PG 96 mins
For some grownups, going to the dentist would be preferable to taking children or grandchildren to an animated film, but nowadays children’s films usually have something in them for adults as well. But for every Toy Story there is a Justin and the Knights of Valour. The initial premise – that Justin is living in a land where Health and Safety rules have wrapped everyone in red tape – is interesting, but surely over the heads of children. While the rest of the film might keep the children amused, there is little here for adults to stop them dreaming of the dentist’s drill.
White House Down
Rating 7/10 12A 131 mins
Bruce Willis was looking a bit old for his vest in the last Die Hard film and if anyone is looking for a replacement, then Channing Tatum is ready and waiting. White House Down is the second film this year in which terrorists take over the President’s home and office. WHD has elements of both the Die Hard series – hence the reference to Mr Tatum’s ability to wear a vest – as well as Harrison Ford’s Air Force One. Jamie Foxx plays the charming US President and there is good chemistry between him and Tatum’s wannabe secret service agent. An enjoyable action film.