UK Cinema Releases: Friday 14th November 2008


Max Payne (Fox): This adaptation of the hit computer game is about a DEA agent (Mark Wahlberg) whose family was killed as part of a conspiracy and an assassin (Kunis) out to avenge her sister’s death. Directed by John Moore it is a lifeless affair which again demonstrates the troubled history of games to the big screen. It didn’t do particularly well in the US and the poor reviews were largely justified. Given how good he can be in films like Boogie Nights and The Departed it is also a criminal waste of Wahlberg. It could probably open to moderate numbers here in the UK, but the bad word-of-mouth will hamper its long term prospects. [Cert 15]

Zack and Miri Make A Porno (Entertainment): Kevin Smith’s latest comedy reaches the UK and is the first not to be set or shot in New Jersey. The plot involves two Pennsylvania roommates, Zack (Seth Rogen) and Miri (Elizabeth Banks), who decide to make a porno after falling on hard times. It got mixed reviews in the US and mostly negative ones over here despite two rising stars in the lead roles. However, it could appeal to a younger audience outside of Smith’s usual fan base. That said it looks like DVD and ancillaries will be where most of the profit lies. [Cert 18]

The Baader-Meinhof Complex (Momentum): This German drama about the 1970s German terrorist group was written and produced by Bernd Eichinger, directed by Uli Edel and stars Moritz BleibtreuMartina Gedeck and Johanna Wokalek. Although not in the same class as more recent films like Downfall and The Lives of Others it remains an interesting film. Not only does it explore issues that still resonate today (terror and the role of the state) but it also provides an interesting snapshot into how post-war Germany struggled to deal with the painful legacy of Hitler and the Nazis. With a running time of two and a half hours it drags in places but provides a comprehensive look at the period of the group. [Cert 15]



I.O.U.S.A. (Mercury Media Picturehouses): A timely documentary exploring the national debt of the United States. It features Robert Bixby (director of the Concord Coalition) and David Walker (the former U.S. Comptroller-General) as they tour the country talking to communities about the dangers of the national debt (known as the “Fiscal Wake-Up Tour”). Given the forthcoming financial crisis that has engulfed the globe, this might do better than expected in limited release. [Showing at Clapham & Greenwich, Ritzy & selected cinemas nationwide

Choking Man (Soda Pictures): A run in London for this US indie film, written and directed by Steve Barron, about a shy Ecuadorian dishwasher working in a Queens diner. [BFI Southbank]

Fine, Totally Fine (Third Window Films): A comedy from Japan, written and directed by Yosuke Fujita about two brothers about to turn 30 who fall in love with the same girl. [ICA Cinema]

A Street Car Named Desire (bfi Distribution): A re-release for this 1951 adaptation of the play by Tennessee Williams. Directed by Elia Kazan, it stars Marlon BrandoVivien LeighKim Hunter and Karl Malden. [BFI Southbank]


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The rest of the UK cinema releases for November 2008
Check out our latest DVD picks for this week (From Monday 10th November 2008)