Dirs: Benjamin Renner, Vincent Patar, Stephane Aubier
Voices: Pauline Brunner, Lambert Wilson
Runtime: 79 minutes
AS any fan of Gabrielle Vincent's books knows, mice and bears are meant to go together like ice cream and vinegar. Except, that is, when the mouse is as charming as tiny, orphaned Celestine and the bear is as tender-hearted as big, lumbering Ernest. This French-Belgian take on Vincent's books is beautifully animated, as you might expect, but the story is just as good value, being alternately thrilling and moving, and more than a little magical. A delight for all ages.
Dir: Ben Affleck
With: Ben Affleck, John Goodman, Alan Arkin
Runtime: 120 minutes
AFTER Gone Baby Gone and The Town, Ben Affleck shows he is here to stay in this directing gig with another rattle-along winner. Argo is the incredible but true tale of the US attempt to free six Americans who managed to escape from the besieged US Embassy in Tehran during the revolution. With no obvious way out, the authorities turned to an unlikely source for help. The script is smart, the performances from veterans Alan Arkin and John Goodman lighten the load with a comic touch, and if the material tries too hard towards the end you'll forgive it anyway.
Out November 7
A Liar's Autobiography (15)
Dirs: Bill Jones, Jeff Simpson, Ben Timlett
Voices: Michael Palin, John Cleese
OR The Untrue Story of Graham Chapman, as it says in the subtitle. The autobiography of the Monty Python legend was a helter-skelter mix of true, false, and fantastical. This animation by Bill Jones, Jeff Simpson and Ben Timlett is fittingly anarchic, bringing together many different animators to tell the story of a life. There is no doubting the effort that has gone into bringing the book to life, but it is telling that the funniest bits are sound and vision clips of Chapman in action.
Dir: Pablo Larrain
With: Gael Garcia Bernal, Alfredo Castro
Runtime: 118 minutes
PABLO Larrain's trilogy about the tragic political history of his native Chile comes to a suitably rousing close. Tony Manero and Post Mortem looked at the revolution and its bloody aftermath; No exits the tunnel into sunshine with a look at the referendum on whether Pinochet should be allowed to extend his stay in office. Gael Garcia Bernal turns in one of his best performances as an ad executive called in to lead the no campaign. Charting political history with a sure hand, No cements Larrain's feat in style.
Out February 2013
Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God (CTBC)
Dir: Alex Gibney
Runtime: 107 minutes
ALEX Gibney, the director of the Oscar-winning Taxi to the Dark Side and Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, once again proves himself the finest documentary maker working today with this look at the child abuse scandal in the Catholic church. Starting with one story, about abuse at a home for deaf children in America, Gibney spreads the net sideways and upwards to show how the church chose to handle, or not, the allegations. While you might feel the subject has been well covered already, the quality of Gibney's contributors, the power of his argument, and the places to which he takes the story, make this an unmissable watch.
ALISON ROWAT'S FILM A-Z
– SEE PAGE 20