Posts Tagged ‘Guy Pearce’

Guy Pearce, Robert Pattinson in "The Rover"

Guy Pearce, Robert Pattinson in “The Rover”

“THE ROVER”   My rating: B- (Opening Jan. 20 at the AMC Town Center)

102 minutes | MPAA rating: R

There must be something about the wide open spaces of Australia’s outback that drives its filmmakers to post-apocalyptic nihilism.

George Miller and the “Mad Max” films.   John Hilcoat with “The Road” and “The Proposition.”

And now David Michôd with “The Rover,” a sweaty, dusty saga about a man in search of his kidnapped car.

Michôd scored a minor coup in 2010 with “Animal Kingdom,” an intimate portrait of a low-level Aussie crime clan that introduced to American audiences the great Jackie Weaver (who nabbed an Oscar nomination). It  was a dark, generally hopeless look at the ties that bind its characters to an evil enterprise.

Now  Michôd goes full-tilt dystopia. The opening credits of “The Rover”  informs us that the story takes place 10 years after “the collapse,” a worldwide economic meltdown that has left most of humanity struggling with chronic poverty.



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Kristen Wiig, Guy Pearce

Kristen Wiig, Guy Pearce

“HATESHIP LOVESHIP” My rating: B (Now playing at the Screenland Armour)

104 minutes | MPAA rating: R

It seems that inside every comic genius there lurks a tragedian just itching to break out.

The latest funny person to make the leap into seriousness is former “SNL” star Kristen Wiig, who in “Hateship Loveship” excels at poartraying a lonely woman who risks all on a last desperate attempt at happiness.

Wiig plays Johanna, who as the film begins is a care-giver for an old lady in small-town Iowa. Johanna has no family and has been with the old lady since she was 15 — or more than half her life. As a result she is emotionally and intellectually naive, not to mention painfully shy.

With her employer’s death Johanna finds a new job in the household of lawyer McCauley (Nick Nolte), a widower caring for his teenage granddauther Sabitha  (Hailee Steinfeld, an Oscar nominee for the Coens’ “True Grit”). Her arrival coincides with a rare visit by Sabitha’s father Ken (Guy Pearce), an alcoholic and druggie whose irresponsible driving led to the death of his wife.

Now Ken is trying to convince his father-in-law to invest in his latest get-rich-quick scheme, refurbishing a run-down motel in Chicago. McCauley isn’t buying; besides, he’s never forgiven Ken for the death of his daughter.


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“God Went Surfing with the Devil”

The surfing documentary has been a cinema staple ever since Bruce Brown’s “Endless Summer” back in 1966, but I don’t think we’ve ever seen anything quite like “God Went Surfing with the Devil,” professional skateboarder Alexander Klein’s heady blend of Middle Eastern politics and wave-catching abandon.

Klein’s doc follows activists with Surfing4Peace who are attempting to do their small part for world peace by shepherding a shipment of surfboards into Gaza. They envision Arab enthusiasts joining their Jewish counterparts in riding the waves of Gaza’s sandy beaches.

Sounds like an easy enough task, (more…)

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