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Hard Miles

Director – R.J. Daniel Hanna – 2023 – US – Cert. 12a – 108m

****1/2

A youth facility social worker takes a group of troubled young men on a transformative team bicycle ride – out in UK and Ireland cinemas on Friday, May 31st

Day-to-day life is one thing after another for Colorado medium-security correction school staff member Greg Townsend (Matthew Modine). He is in court defending, failing to get the court to see one of his charges as a human being rather than someone who committed an offence. Leaving, he finds someone has stolen his bicycle (it later gets found by the police, having sustained only minor damage). He is fielding calls from his prison-incarcerated brother about their father, who is in a care home and may not have much longer to live, and with whom Greg has not had contact for years. He is at the school, pulling boys apart as they attack each other for the most trivial remark.

However, not everything is about work and family responsibility. Greg is a cycling enthusiast, and is looking forward to taking his booked holiday of a week or more off cycling 1 000 (well, 762) miles to the Grand Canyon.… Read the rest

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Features Live Action Movies

Infinity Pool

Director – Brandon Cronenberg – 2023 – Canada, Hungary, France – Cert. 18 – 117m

*****

WARNING: NSFW

A man holidaying abroad at a resort with his wealthy wife is lured into a series of crimes, punishable locally by death unless you’re rich enough to buy your way out – in UK cinemas from Friday, March 24th

An infinity pool is a swimming pool designed so that at least one edge appears to go on forever, blending into a seascape or waterscape such as an ocean or lake. It’s limitless. One character in this film once installed such a pool for a local hotel, but that’s really not the point. Which is, something that has no boundary, that appears to extend into infinity. Like the moral transgressions in this film, once the preventative edges of incurred punishment are removed from the perpetration of criminal acts, for which the idea of the infinity pool stands as a metaphor. This may not make sense now, but it will once you’ve watched the film and thought about it.

James (Alexander Skarsgärd) and Em (Cleopatra Coleman) Foster are holidaying at a resort. To date, he is a one-book writer: his book was published to rotten reviews and sank without trace and he can’t seem to find an idea for the second one.… Read the rest

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Features Live Action Movies

Old

Director – M. Night Shyamalan – 2021 – US – Cert. 15 – 108m

*****

A family is trapped on an idyllic beach where people age rapidly – out in cinemas on Friday, July 21st

This was adapted from the graphic novel Sandcastle written by Pierre Oscar Lévy and illustrated by Frederik Peeters which clearly has caught the imagination of M. Night Shyamalan (The Sixth Sense, 1999; Unbreakable, 2000; Glass, 2019).

Guy and Prisca Capa (Gael García Bernal from Rosewater, Jon Stewart, 2017; No, Pablo Larrain, 2012 and Vicky Krieps from Phantom Thread, Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017) and their kids Maddox, 11 (Alexa Swinton) and Trent, 6 (Nolan River) are driven to their tropical holiday resort which Prisca can’t believe she found on the internet. Not that they are so lucky in their personal lives: she has been diagnosed with cancer and the couple have yet to tell their children of their impending divorce.

As they ponder what to do on their first day, the hotel offers them a chance to spend it at an exclusive beach alongside other select guests. These turn out to include surgeon Charles (Rufus Sewell from The Father, Florian Zeller, 2020) and his family – mother Agnes (Kathleen Chalfant), trophy wife Chrystal (Abbey Lee) and Kara, 6 (Kylie Begley) – as well as married couple Jarin (Ken Leung) and Patricia (Nikki Amuka-Bird).… Read the rest