Tag Archives: Stephen Fry

The Man Who Knew Infinity

GREAT KNOWLEDGE COMES FROM THE HUMBLEST OF ORIGINS. After writing to famous mathematician G.H. Hardy (Jeremy Irons) in 1913 and sending him advanced formulas, the young Srinivasa Ramanujan (Dev Patel), who’s grown up in India without an education, is brought to Trinity College and urged to prove his work. This biography of the tragically short … Continue reading The Man Who Knew Infinity

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

THE DEFINING CHAPTER.  The dragon Smaug flies to Esgaroth to destroy the town, but greater challenges await in the shape of a coming battle for Lonely Mountain. The final part of this trilogy is the shortest film Peter Jackson ever made about the Middle-Earth, but maybe that’s because it is so completely dominated by that … Continue reading The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

BEYOND DARKNESS… BEYOND DESOLATION… LIES THE GREATEST DANGER OF ALL.  On their journey to the Lonely Mountain, Bilbo (Martin Freeman) and the dwarves enter a mysterious forest… and Gandalf (Ian McKellen) confronts a dark power. The second chapter in the Hobbit franchise is an improvement on the first, darker in tone, with several engaging adventures … Continue reading The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Black Adder: Hilarious History

At a time when Rowan Atkinson chooses to make another Johnny English, one certainly needs to be reminded of an era when he was actually funny. Those days were the 1980s and Atkinson’s pinnacle of achievement became the TV series Black Adder. Conceived by him and Richard Curtis while they were working on Not the Nine O’Clock News (1979-1982), … Continue reading Black Adder: Hilarious History

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

As Professor Moriarty (Jared Harris) conspires to start a world war by pitting France and Germany against each other, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson (Robert Downey, Jr., Jude Law) try to outwit him. The two stars are still fun to watch and they’re superbly aided by an appropriately creepy Harris as Moriarty and Stephen Fry … Continue reading Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

Animals United

When drought threatens a large delta in Botswana, its animals join forces and confront the humans who caused the environmental disaster. Hayao Miyazaki faces competition from this computer-animated 3D production… but he shouldn’t lose any sleep. Its environmental message is heavy-handed, sometimes depressing, and leaves no room for imagination. As for the technical details, the … Continue reading Animals United

Alice in Wonderland

YOU’RE INVITED TO A VERY IMPORTANT DATE 3/5/10. 19-year-old Alice Kingsleigh (Mia Wasikowska) is being set up to marry a dull English nobleman, but is rescued by falling into a hole in the ground that takes her to a bizarre place called Underland. Lewis Carroll’s books are fused into one story in Tim Burton’s hands and … Continue reading Alice in Wonderland

Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story

HE’S ABOUT TO PLAY THE ROLE OF HIS LIFE. Director Michael Winterbottom has a knack for making fake documentaries in the style of Christopher Guest, but this one has a different twist – stars Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon play themselves (or rather arrogant versions of the same) competing for the spotlight while making a … Continue reading Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story

V for Vendetta

REMEMBER, REMEMBER THE 5TH OF NOVEMBER. In the future, England has turned into a fascist dictatorship, but a masked freedom fighter called V (Hugo Weaving) intends to bring it down – perhaps with some help from young Evey Hammond (Natalie Portman). Perhaps this movie version of the classic graphic novel seems bloated at times, but … Continue reading V for Vendetta

Fish Called Wanda: No Reason to Be Offended

A TALE OF MURDER, LUST, GREED, REVENGE, AND SEAFOOD.   In the mid-eighties, John Cleese must have been pretty pleased with himself. He was still at the top of his game, a comedy superstar, and his latest film Clockwise (1986) showed him in good shape. That movie paired his uptight headmaster with a charming, young girl who … Continue reading Fish Called Wanda: No Reason to Be Offended

The Life and Death of Peter Sellers

NEVER JUDGE A MAN BY HIS COVER. If the right actor is cast as the brilliant and versatile Peter Sellers in a biography, half the job is done. Geoffrey Rush is excellent as the childish, egotistic mama’s boy whose emotional outbursts could be equally charming and off-putting; he makes a convincing Clouseau and classic scenes … Continue reading The Life and Death of Peter Sellers