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Cinema Scoop

New out on DVD/Blu-ray this week

New out on DVD/Blu-ray for Tuesday February 12.

     Skyfall

Bond's loyalty to M is tested as her past comes back to haunt her. As MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.

Daniel Craig once again reprises his role as 007 in the 23rd installment of this amazing franchise. I absolutely loved every aspect of Skyfall, from its dazzling visuals and death defying stunt sequences, to the meaty storyline filled with richly drawn character work from a stellar cast that also includes Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomi Harris, Bew Whishaw and Albert Finney.

Directed beautifully by Sam Mendes (American Beauty, Road to Perdition), Skyfall is one of the best looking and most gorgeously shot Bond films ever. It's a simply spectacular production that truly feels epic in scope. In my opinion, it's easily one of the best Bond movies ever and I would definitely place it in my top 5 list of favourite Bond films along with Goldfinger, Casino Royale, From Russia With Love and On Her Majesty's Secret Service.

Whether you are a Bond fan or not, this is a magnificent film that is sure to appeal to anyone who likes a dash of excitement in their film diet.

Such an awesome show!

     The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Based on the best-selling novel by Stephen Chbosky (who also serves as director for the film), The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a modern classic that captures the dizzying highs and crushing lows of growing up. Starring Logan Lerman, Emma Watson and Ezra Miller, the film is a moving tale of love, loss, fear, hope and the unforgettable friends that help us through life.

I adored everything about The Perks of Being a Wallflower. This is one of the best coming-of-age dramas that I have seen in years. It is so sharply written and astute in its portrayal of life in high school, so much so that I could completely relate to much of what occurs in the film. This really is a wonderful little gem of a movie that I hope people seek out. It's one of my favourites from this past year.

I implore everyone to seek out The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

     The Sessions

The Sessions tells the story of a man confined to an iron lung who is determined - at age 38 - to lose his virginity. With the help of his therapists and the guidance of his priest, he sets out to make his dream a reality.

Winner of the audience award at the Sundance Film Festival, the film is based on the autobiographical writings of California-based journalist and poet Mark O'Brien, who was paralyzed from the neck down due to polio and the efforts he made to hire a sex surrogate in order to lose his virginity.

Starring John Hawkes, Helen Hunt and William H. Macy, The Sessions is an excellent little film filled with stellar performances and plenty of heart and charm that will surely make you laugh, smile and cry. It is a tender and touching film about compassion, humanity, and the longing need for physical affection and intimacy.

It's a darn shame that John Hawkes was snubbed of a nomination for Best Actor at this year's Academy Awards because he does a tremendous job in a role that required him to be lying down and physically twisted for the duration of the film. At least Helen Hunt received a nomination for her role.

I thoroughly enjoyed The Sessions and I think that mature audience members should definitely seek it out.

     The Man With the Iron Fists

On the hunt for a fabled treasure of gold, a band of warriors, assassins, and a rogue British soldier descend upon a village in feudal China, where a humble blacksmith looks to defend himself and his fellow villagers.

Directed by music industry heavyweight RZA, and featuring an international cast led by Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu, this martial arts spaghetti western is somewhat of an ill-conceived mess. The plot is directionless and it is definitely a case of style over substance. Sure, there are plenty of hyper-violent action scenes filled with gratuitous amounts of blood splatter, but the film just goes nowhere.

I was pretty disappointed with The Man With the Iron Fists.

Also out this week is the wonderful, offbeat and charming science fiction comedy drama, Robot & Frank, starring Frank Langella, Susan Sarandon, James Marsden and Liv Tyler, the latest video game horror adaptation, Silent Hill: Revelation, the drama called The Eye of the Storm, starring Charlotte Rampling, Geoffrey Rush and Judy Davis, and a political thriller, Inescapable, with Marisa Tomei and Joshua Jackson.

     Blast From the Past

Since Valentine's Day is upon us I thought I would provide you with a list of some of my favourite love stories and romance films. Fellas pay attention because you might want to rent some of these to score points with your gals. Here's a list of 50 to choose from. Enjoy!

50. Chocolat (2000) - Starring Johnny Depp and Juliette Binoche
49. Moulin Rouge! (2001) - Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor
48. Pretty in Pink (1986) - Molly Ringwald, Andrew McCarthy and Jon Cryer
47. Adam's Rib (1949) - Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn
46. Bridget Jones's Diary (2001) - Renée Zellweger, Hugh Grant and Colin Firth
45. Now, Voyager (1942) - Bette Davis, Claude Rains and Paul Henreid
44. A Place in the Sun (1951) - Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift
43. Bringing Up Baby (1938) - Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn
42. Jerry Maguire (1996) - Tom Cruise and Renée Zellweger
41. The American President (1995) - Michael Douglas and Annette Bening
40. Roxanne (1987) - Steve Martin and Daryl Hannah
39. Il Postino (1994) - Italian film with Massimo Troisi and Maria Grazia Cucinotta
38. To Catch a Thief (1955) - Cary Grant and Grace Kelly
37. Like Water for Chocolate (1993) - Really sensual Mexican film
36. Love Actually (2003) - Huge British ensemble cast
35. Wuthering Heights (1939) - Laurence Olivier and Merle Oberon
34. Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967) - Sidney Poitier and Hepburn & Tracy
33. WALL-E (2008) - Cute robot love from Pixar
32. Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994) - Hugh Grant and Andie MacDowell
31. (500) Days of Summer (2009) - Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel
30. Manhattan (1979) - Woody Allen and Diane Keaton
29. Dirty Dancing (1987) - Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey
28. Marty (1955) - Ernest Borgnine and Betsy Blair
27. Say Anything... (1989) - John Cusack and Ione Skye
26. The Way We Were (1973) - Robert Redford and Barbara Streisand
25. Ghost (1990) - Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze
24. Swing Time (1936) - Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers
23. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946) - Fredric March and Myrna Loy
22. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) - Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet
21. Once (2007) - Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová
20. Sleepless in Seattle (1993) - Ton Hanks and Meg Ryan
19. Harold and Maude (1971) - Ruth Gordon and Bud Cort
18. Roman Holiday (1953) - Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck
17. The Princess Bride (1987) - Cary Elwes and Robin Wright
16. The Apartment (1960) - Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine and Fred MacMurray
15. An American in Paris (1951) - Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron
14. To Have and Have Not (1944) - Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall
13. Titanic (1997) - Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet
12. Lost in Translation (2003) - Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson
11. When Harry Met Sally... (1989) - Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan
10. The Philadelphia Story (1940) - Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, Jimmy Stewart
  9. Before Sunrise (1995) and Before Sunset (2004) - Ethan Hawke, Julie Delpy
  8. Amélie (2001) - Audrey Tautou
  7. The Sound of Music (1965) - Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer
  6. From Here to Eternity (1953) - Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr
  5. Annie Hall (1977) - Woody Allen and Diane Keaton
  4. The African Queen (1951) - Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn
  3. Singin' in the Rain (1952) - Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds
  2. Sabrina (1954) - Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn and William Holden
  1. Casablanca (1942) - Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman

Happy Valentine's Day to all you lovers out there.

New out on DVD/Blu-ray is brought to you by Leo's Videos, 2680 Pandosy St. (250) 861-8437



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