UK Cinema Releases: Friday 5th June 2009

UK Cinema Picks 05-06-09


Terminator Salvation (Sony Pictures): The fourth Terminator film tries to reboot the franchise with a story set in the apocalyptic future only glimpsed at in the first three films. Christian Bale stars as future Resistance leader John ConnorSam Worthington plays a mysterious man named Marcus Wright and Anton Yelchin is a young Kyle Reese, the protagonist from the original 1984 film.

Set in 2018, it focuses on the war between humanity and Skynet and although the action sequences are mostly well done, all the stuff inbetween is pretty ropey (although to be fair Worthington’s role is better than you might think). Hiring McG as a director was a big mistake, as the basic premise of this new Terminator franchise could have been quite tasty in the hands of a skilled director (like James Cameron) but instead it is pretty formulaic stuff.

Sony have distribution rights for the UK and can expect a big opening weekend but bad word of mouth might affect the box office in the next week or two. The now infamous Christian Bale rant that surfaced earlier this year has probably been one of the most effective (if unintentional) viral ads ever. [London & Nationwide / Cert 12A]

Last Chance Harvey (Momentum Pictures): A romantic film starring Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson as two people who meet and fall in love in London. Written and directed by Joel Hopkins, it also stars Kathy BakerJames BrolinLiane Balaban and Richard Schiff.

Momentum will be hoping to attract the older audience who aren’t going to see Terminator and given the OK reviews it got stateside, it might do respectable business. [Chelsea Cinema, Curzon Mayfair, Odeon West End & Nationwide / Cert 12A]



Sugar / Anything for Her 05-06-09

Sugar (Axiom Films): The second film from Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck is the story of Miguel Santos (Algenis Perez Soto) nicknamed ‘Sugar’, a Dominican pitcher from San Pedro de Macorís, who tries to make it to the big leagues of US baseball. After their brilliant debut in 2006 with Half Nelson, the filmmakers here deserve a lot of credit for sticking to their artistic guns and not making a formulaic indie movie.

It wisely eschews the cliches of US sports movies and provides a rare and fascinating glimpse into the business of US sport, as well as being an absorbing immigrant story. Like Half Nelson it is well observed and free of any cheap sentiment. It premiered at Sundance in 2008 and although it did the festival circuit to some critical acclaim struggled to make an impact at the box office. Axiom will be hoping it does OK arthouse business on the back of very good reviews, which it deserves as it is the kind of US film that you rarely get to see these days. [Curzon Soho & Key Cities / Cert 15]

Anything For Her (Metrodome): A French thriller about a married couple (Diane Kruger and Vincent Lindon) whose life takes a turn for the worse whenone of them is arrested on murder charges. Metrodome will be hoping the same audiences who turned out for Tell No One in 2007 will be up for this. A US remake is already in the works and I’m guessing more people will revisit this film when that vversion is finally released. [Barbican, Cine Lumiere, C’World Haymarket, Curzon Soho & Key Cities/ Cert 15]

The Hide (ICA Cinema): A low budget film about two men who form a close bond after news of a police manhunt sets them both on edge. Directed by Marek Losey, it stars Alex MacQueen and Phil Campbell. [ICA Cinema]

Max Manus Man Of War (Revolver Entertainment): A Norwegian biopic about resistance fighter Max Manus, directed by Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg, it stars Aksel Hennie and Nicolai Cleve Broch. [Genesis Cinema Mile End / Cert 15]

Shadows In The Sun (Artificial Eye): Set in the late 1960s, this is the story of how a mysterious loner changes the lives of one family and helps them re-discover their deep affection for one another. Directed by David Rocksavage, it stars Jean SimmonsJamie DornanClemency Burton-Hill and James Wilby. [Curzon Mayfair, Renoir & selected Key Cities / Cert 12A]

Accident (bfi Distribution): A BFI re-issue for this 1967 film, directed by Joseph Losey and written by Harold Pinter, based on the novel by Nicholas Mosley. The story is about the complex relationships between an Oxford professor (Dirk Bogarde), one of his students and the young woman who captivates both of them. It was the second of three collaborations between Pinter and Losey, preceded by The Servant and followed by The Go-Between. [London & Key Cities / Cert 12A]

This Sporting Life (Park Circus): Another re-issue of a 1960s film based on a novel of the same name by David Storey about a rugby league player (Richard Harris) in Wakefield, Yorkshire whose romantic life is not as successful as his sporting life. Co-starring Rachel Roberts and Alan Badel, it was directed by Lindsay Anderson and was one of the last major films of the British New Wave. [ICA Cinema & selected Key Cities / Cert 12A]

UK cinema releases for June 2009
DVD Picks for this week including Slumdog Millionaire, The Wrestler and Battlestar Galactica: The Final Season (W/C Monday 1st June)


Terminator: Evaluation

Terminator Salvation poster

The fourth Terminator film is not exactly the train wreck it could have been and breaks down like this: the action is good, the drama average and the timeline utterly baffling.

For those who need a bit of a refresher on the famous franchise, Terminator Salvation actually takes place in the apocalyptic future glimpsed at in the first three films in which mankind has been enslaved by a giant computer network known as Skynet.

Up to this point robots from the future (known as Terminators) have been sent back to the present (or more accurately the years 1984, 1995 and 2004) in order to kill the future leader (John Connor) of the human resistance movement.

With this film the focus is on Connor (Christian Bale), a mysterious man named Marcus Wright (Sam Worthington) and the efforts to locate a young Kyle Reese (Anton Yelchin), who was the character who saved Connor’s mother in the first film.

The most surprising aspect of the script, written by a host of scribes including John D. Brancato, Michael Ferris, Jonathan Nolan, and Anthony E. Zuiker, is that it gives almost equal screen time to Worthington and Bale.

Without giving too much of the plot away it manages to play around with the idea of the Terminator characters in a way that you might not expect.

But although the key sub-plot works well, the dramatic scenes on the whole compare unfavorably to the earlier films.

This is where you wonder why McG was hired as a director. Although the action sequences are handled well, the underlying tension and human drama is wasted with too many characters shouting and grimacing their way through scenes.

Given that much of the strength of the first two Terminator films was their intense and imaginative mix of drama, action and special effects, who thought that the guy behind Charlie Angel’s: Full Throttle was the guy to direct this?

There are some set pieces that are handled with a degree of panache and skill but the scenes in between that don’t involve explosions are mostly flat and perfunctory.

But part of the problem with this film is that the timeline – the narrative rock upon which everything is based – is utterly confusing.

In this film John Connor is trying to save the man who will become his father (Kyle Reese), so he can send him back in time to 1984 in order to save his mother.

But the events of T2, T3 and the recent TV show leave me baffled. Empire have done an admirable job of deconstructing the timeline but even if you follow the ‘logic’ of all the intertwining threads you will either get a heavy discussion about the nature of time travel or a headache.

Buty you could argue that many other films involving time travel contain similar paradoxes if you scratch beneath thier surface.

James Cameron set a very high standard with the first two films and perhaps the lesson of the Terminator franchise is that things haven’t been the same since he left.

In Terminator 2, John Connor says:

The future’s not set. There’s no fate but what we make for ourselves.

Maybe it would have been better to let Cameron make that fate or just not revive it at all.

Terminator Salvation is out at UK cinenas now

> Official site
> Reviews of Terminator Salvation at Metacritic
> A whiteboard that ‘explains’ the Terminator timeline


UK Cinema Releases: June 2009

UK Cinema Releases June 2009

FRIDAY 5th JUNE 2009

  • Terminator: Salvation (12A) / Sony Pictures (Previews June 3rd)
  • Last Chance Harvey (12A) / Momentum Pictures
  • Sugar (15) / Axiom
  • Anything For Her (15) / Metrodome
  • Accident (12A) / bfi Distribution
  • The Hide (TBC) / ICA Cinema
  • Last Chance Harvey (12A) / Momentum Pictures
  • Max Manus Man Of War (15) / Revolver Entertainment
  • Shadows In The Sun (12A) / Artificial Eye
  • This Sporting Life (12A) / Park Circus

FRIDAY 12th JUNE 2009

  • The Hangover (15) / Warner Bros.
  • The Last House On The Left (18) / Universal
  • Looking For Eric (15) / Icon
  • Blood: The Last Vampire (TBC) Pathe
  • Crimson Wing (TBC) / Walt Disney
  • Just Another Love Story (TBC) Revolver Entertainment
  • Doghouse (TBC) / Vertigo Films
  • The End Of The Line (TBC) / Dogwoof
  • New Town Killers (15) / High Fliers Films
  • Red Cliff (15) / Entertainment
  • Soi Cowboy (TBC) / Network Releasing

FRIDAY 19th JUNE 2009

  • Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen (TBC) Paramount
  • 44 Inch Chest (TBC) / Momentum Pictures
  • Miss March (15) / 20th Century Fox
  • The Haunting In Connecticut (TBC) / Entertainment
  • Beyond The Fire (15) / Met Film Distribution
  • The Disappeared (TBC) / ICA Cinema
  • Gigantic (15) The Works Key Cities
  • Katyn (15) / Artificial Eye
  • North By Northwest (PG) / bfi Distribution
  • Telstar (15) / Aspiration/Miracle

FRIDAY 26th JUNE 2009

  • Year One (TBC) / Sony Pictures
  • Tenderness (15) / Lionsgate
  • Blood: The Last Vampire (18)Warner Bros & Pathe
  • The Blue Tower (TBC) ICA Cinema
  • Dummy (TBC) Shoreline Entertainment
  • The Last Thakur (TBC) / Artificial Eye
  • My Sister’s Keeper (12A) / Entertainment
  • Rudo & Cursi (15) / Optimum Releasing
  • Shirin (PG) / bfi Distribution
  • Sunshine Cleaning (15) / Delanic & Anchor Bay

Keep a look out every Friday for a breakdown of the weekly releases with more detail on each film.

If you have any questions about this month’s cinema releases or any upcoming titles then just email me or leave a comment below.

Get local showtimes via Google Movies (just enter your local postcode)
Find out about films showing near you at MyFilms


New Terminator Salvation Trailer

The latest (action packed) trailer for Terminator Salvation.

The marketing folks obviously resisted the temptation to include audio of Christian Bale’s now infamous on set rant

Amusing News

Christian Bale rant on Terminator Salvation set

Christian Bale rant

Audio has surfaced on the web of Christian Bale going absolutely ballistic on the set of Terminator Salvation last summer.

Have a listen to the full NSFW rant here:


It appears from the audio, first posted on TMZ on Monday, that Bale (who plays John Connor in the film) got angry after cinematographer Shane Hurlbut walked within his frame of view during filming for a second time.

During the heated exchange, which reportedly was recorded in July 2008, days before Bale began promoting The Dark Knight in London (where he was arrested on allegation of assault), the actor can clearly be heard ranting angrily toward Hurlbut.

TMZ report:

It happened on the set after a director of photography accidentally ruined a scene by walking onto the set.

Bale lost it, screaming, yelling and threatening to quit if the bosses didn’t fire the dude.

Film execs sent the tape to the insurance company that insured the film in case Bale bailed.

According to a source close to the film who spoke to Access Hollywood, despite the incident, Terminator Salvation wrapped up and no one was fired.

The actor and Hurlbut have also reportedly made up.

The film’s assistant director Bruce Franklin – who can be heard in the tape – told E-Online:

If you are working in a very intense scene and someone takes you out of your groove…

It was the most emotional scene in the movie. And for him to get stopped in the middle of it – he is very intensely involved in his character.

‘He didn’t walk around like that all day long. It was just a moment and it passed.

This was my second movie with Christian, and it has always been a good experience with him. He is so dedicated to the craft.

‘I think someone is begging to make some noise [controversy] about this, but I don’t think it’s fair. The art of acting is not paint by numbers, it’s an art form.’

However, once something like this gets out people can have all kinds of fun with it.

This dance remix by Revolucian is very impressive:

There is also a ‘Christian Bale And I Are Done Profesionally’ T-Shirt at, a soundboard created by UGO and even a bizarre photo montage comparing him to Kermit the Frog has resurfaced.

UPDATED 06/02/09

The Bale audio made some waves on BBC Breakfast this week when someone forget to edit out the F-word:

And the actor also rang the LA radio station KROQ to apologise and explain what happened.

Christian Bale calls KROQ

Listen to the call here:


If anything, this whole affair has provided a lot of free publicity for the film.

> Download the full rant as an MP3 file
> Christian Bale at the IMDb
> Find out more about Terminator Salvation at Wikipedia


Trailer: Terminator Salvation

Terminator Salvation will be released in the UK on June 5th 2009


Trailer: Terminator Salvation

This is the first teaser trailer for the fourth Terminator film, which is called Terminator Salvation.

(Is this video isn’t working try this link at MSN)

Set in in 2018, it focuses on the original war between humanity and Skynet.

Christian Bale stars as John Connor, Bryce Dallas Howard as Kate Connor, Anton Yelchin as Kyle Reese, Sam Worthington as the new character Marcus Wright and is directed by McG.

It will be released in the US on May 22nd 2009 and in the UK on June 5th 2009.

> Official site for Terminator Salvation and production blog
> IMDb entry for the film
> Find out more about the Terminator franchise at Wikipedia
> NY Times article on how producion may be affected by a possible SAG strike