Zoolander 2

Really, really, ridiculously disappointing.

The Assassin

There are martial arts movies and there are martial arts movies. The Assassin isn't either.

Batman v Superman

A bold, mature exploration of myths and epics - followed by a two-hour mess.

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Tag:austin powers

Woody Allen at the BFI - Sleeper 

"What do you believe in?" "Sex and death. Two things that come once in a lifetime. But at least after death, you're not nauseous."

The BFI Woody Allen retrospective continues tonight with Sleeper, one of Allen's earliest films - and one of the most quintessential. From its opening scene, in which a man (Woody Allen) is woken up in the future after being cryogenically frozen (complete with signature glasses), you can tell it's going to be a very silly affair. You'll also note a lot of the elements that have popped up in Austin Powers, as well as in Allen's future films.

Awake and disoriented, Allen's health food store owner staggers around the 22nd Century lab, eating rubber gloves and running people over in a wheelchair. All the while, he wears a manic grin on his face. It's genuinely hilarious, clearly inspired by comedians such as Benny Hill and Buster Keaton, as loud jazz honky tonks over the top of near-silent slapstick. Early on, instant pudding takes over the kitchen; later, Allen flies away from government officials before going on to win the Miss America beauty pageant. 

Sleeper is stitched together loosely, a patchwork of gags and occasional plot. Satire is in there somewhere too, but so are giant bananas, scientific experiments and machines that cause orgasms. It's the epitome of Allen's "early, funny ones" and he has rarely exhibited such an open love of anarchy since.

In that sense it compares well to the initial output of fellow silly-to-serious helmer Pedro Almodovar.

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With Studio Ghibli's Arrietty arriving in cinemas this week (read our Arrietty review), Hayao Miyazaki's screenplay takes us under the floorboards into the miniature world of Mary Norton's The Borrowers.

But while director Hiromasa Yonebayashi takes pleasure in watching Arrietty run from cats, carry leaves and all the other microscopic details of her existence, Ghibli's adaptation reminds us that, in the words of Dr. Seuss, a person's a person, no matter how small.

So join us, oh normal-sized people, as we turn the microscope onto all that is tiny in the world of film. These are cinema's greatest little people:

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BlogalongaBond. One Bond film a month until Bond 23 turns up in November next year.

We all know Thunderball is a bit of underwater guff. Yes, the ocean fight sequences were groundbreaking and bad girl Fiona Vulpe (Luciana Paluzzi) is a steaming hot sex crumpet, but let's be honest: Terence Young’s third Bond movie is a load of watery cackwaffle.

So it’s no surprise that a remake came along in 1983. While Roger Moore was dipping his fingers into Octopussy, Kevin McClory was following through on his lawsuit against Ian Fleming/United Artists over the origins of the Thunderball screenplay. The result? Never Say Never Again.

The new take on the Thunderball story (SPECTRE steal nuclear weapons and hold the world to ransom) turned out to be a box office success, taking $160 million - better than Thunderball’s $141m. So just in case someone else comes along wanting to make a few bob by tampering with the official Bond canon, here’s what Never Say Never Again teaches us about how to remake a Bond film.

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