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Out on DVD this month


A new Steven Spielberg film is always an exciting prospect. Tere’s no doubting the man’s technical prowess, and no one would argue his

influence on modern cinema, but which Spielberg are we going to get? Will it be blockbuster Spielberg, gritty Spielberg, Sci-Fi Spielberg, important Spielberg, or guff Spielberg? Well, I’m sorry to report that with Bridge of Spies we get a film which, in its first act, promises important Spielberg, but then collapses into a bit of a guffy mess.

Tat first act, though, really is quite extraordinary: It’s 1957, the height of the Cold War. Te CIA apprehend a Russian agent - fantastically portrayed by Mark Rylance - whom Tom Hanks is given the unenviable but - if American justice is to

be seen as universal - necessary task of defending.

So far so good. Rylance and Hanks’ chemistry is palpable, and the film is never better than when these two share the screen. Also, for post-Guantanamo America, the idea that a nation should be judged on how it treats its captured enemies seems almost subversive. See? Important Spielberg.

Ten, unfortunately, the tits kinda fall off. Hanks frowning in various offices in Berlin, negotiating to secure the exchange of the spy for a detained American pilot, just doesn’t have the same wallop as that first act. And an overly sentimental ending, dripping with Spielberg syrup, doesn’t help matters.

It’s a shame, because somewhere in all this there’s a brilliant film trying to escape. Unfortunately, Spielberg machine-guns it to death before it can even climb the wall.

Jay Freeman

March FILM RELEASES 04 March Goodnight Mommy What’s scarier than twins? How about Austrian twins! Tis eerie Euro-frightener gets a UK release date on the big screen, finally. Which is awesome, because it’s really very creepy. See it if it comes anywhere near where you live. Honestly, you’ll shit yourself. In German. Scheiße!

11 March AnomalisaBeautifully made, Oscar nominated, animated masterpiece from Charlie Kaufman (Being John Malkovich). Masterpiece? Tat’s what I fucking said – masterpiece! Seriously, I nearly cry just looking at the trailer. I want to see this so bad it makes my chest hurt.

18 March 10 Cloverfield LaneKurt Russell makes the most of the magnificent soup- strainer that he grew on his face for the Hateful Eight by banging out another Western this month. Tis time, he heads up a posse to rescue some folks from a gang of cannibals living in ‘them thar caves over yonder’. I expect he’ll be doing more riding around than in H8, and less eating the stew.

28 March Eddie the EagleAnimated feel-good movie about an eagle that loses his eggs and embarks on… what? It’s about the skier? Fuck off! Really? But he was shite! Oh, that’s what the films about? Oh, well fair enough then, I suppose. Ooh, it’s got the guy from Kingsman in it. I like him. Yeah, alright. I’m in. Smiley

March DVD RELEASES 07 March Te Lady in the VanNicholas Hytner brings Alan Bennett’s commercial and critical West End smash to the screen 16 years after its stage debut, but with the same leading lady, the sublime Dame Maggie Smith. Quirky, warm, funny, and moving. Pretty much faultless, actually.

14 March Game of Trones: Season Five HBO’s tits and todgers fantasy favourite goes from strength to strength, and this timely release ahead of the April airing of season six should make sure you’re up to speed with all the bums and bollocks of Westeros.

21 March Steve Jobs Director Danny Boyle, writer Aaron Sorkin, and leading man Michael Fassbender’s warts-and-all portrait of the Apple impresario is relentless, theatrical, and drum-tight. A masterclass from all concerned, and one of the best films of last year.

28 March Bill Hicks: VariousSame day releases for all of the best known performances - and some lesser-known footage - by one of the pioneers of social commentary. If you’re not sure why Hicks’ name is spoken in such hushed, reverent tones by comedy connoisseurs, this is a perfect opportunity to find out. Essential. Jay Freeman

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