January 19-25: Including Cars and Ali G Indahouse

by Diana Balham / 10 January, 2013
Fun on wheels and a bit of respect!


The Grocer's Son
The Grocer's Son, Sunday

Shark Tale (Four, 6.30pm). A vegetarian shark? He clearly hasn’t seen Jaws: The Revenge (Friday, Four, 8.30pm). Both are bloodless, in different ways.(2004 and 1987), (2.5/5), (1.5/5)

Two Hands (Maori, 8.30pm). Seed-nee’s seething criminal underbelly wearing footie shorts and jandals. Heath Ledger, Bryan Brown and Rose Byrne bring a bit of class to King’s Cross in this classic crime thriller with comic touches about a 19-year-old (Ledger) who loses 10 grand that belongs to a local hoodlum (Brown). Goes faster than a Commodore at Bathurst – or should I say a Falcon? Here, the bad guys drive Fords and the good guys drive Holdens; but the purple XB Falcon driven by Acko (a baddy) is director Gregor Jordan’s own car. Strewth. (1999) (3/5)

Lovely & Amazing (Choice, 8.30pm). Neurotic self-obsession and body image in Los Angeles? You’re kidding? Someone described director Nicole Holofcener (Walking and Talking) as an American Mike Leigh, but I think the Englishman would rather eat his own children than make a film in which the lead is having liposuction. Nevertheless, it’s a character study – about a mother and her three insecure daughters – with a great cast that includes Catherine Keener, Emily Mortimer, Jake Gyllenhaal and Brenda Blethyn (doing a shocking American accent). But one Brenda Blethyn does not a Mike Leigh film make. (2001) (3.5/5)

The Strangers (Four, 8.50pm). Try to find the positives in this horror/thriller about a couple who are terrorised in a holiday home by three mask-wearing assailants and must fight to survive. Unnecessary fear speeds up your metabolism? You like to feel smug about your safe neighbourhood? You’re turned on by people wearing masks? Unless you’ve got a thing for Liv Tyler or Scott Speedman, you don’t need this sadistic nonsense. (2008) (2.5/5)

Ransom (TV1, 10.30pm). Mel Gibson sets his jaw and spits out commands – to the police, to the kidnappers, to his wife – for nearly two hours as he tries to get his stolen nine-year-old back. It’s payback time all right, and it’s not just about the money. So much easier just to stay poor. (1996) (3/5)

Proof of Life (TV2, 11.05pm). What a terrible dilemma for poor Meg Ryan. Her engineer husband (David Morse) has been kidnapped by South Americans and she finds herself falling for hostage negotiator Russell Crowe. Let’s hope they keep hubby, then, and everyone will be happy. (2000) (2.5/5)


Cars, Sunday

Cars (TV2, 7.00pm). Fun on wheels. (2006) (3.5/5)

The Grocer’s Son (Maori TV, 8.30pm). When his shop-owning father gets sick, city boy Antoine (Nicolas Cazalé) comes home to his Provence village, bringing his worldly friend Claire (Clotilde Hesme). Beautiful cinematography, languid pacing, dry but twinkly characterisation: it’s a French comedy. (The French title is Le Fils de l’Épicier.) (2007) (3.5/5)

Jesse Stone: Night Passage (Choice, 8.30pm). No 2 in a series about an LA cop who relocates to small-town Paradise (Massachusetts) only to find it full of killers and meanies. More Hot Fuzz than Midsomer Murders, but it’s giving Tom Selleck something to do in his old age, and he’s still churning them out. (2006) 2.5/5)

The Baby of Mâcon (Rialto, Sky 025, 8.30pm). The Peter Greenaway Directors’ Showcase series continues with this French baroque snuff movie, which might also be a snook-cocking exercise apparently aimed at the prurience of people who complained about a Benetton ad featuring a new born baby covered in blood and still attached to the umbilical cord. Those folk wouldn’t have got past the first scene. As reviewer David N Butterworth put it, “No other filmmaker could have made The Baby of Mâcon. And no other filmmaker would have wanted to.” Greenaway went over the top with this film, about an ugly woman who gives birth to a beautiful baby and passes it off as an immaculate conception, but he bounced back with better and more watchable movies. (1993) (3.5/5)

Me, Myself & Irene (TV3, 8.50pm). 2000 was the year Renée Zellweger was running away from whackos: she also did Nurse Betty, where her car was full of drugs stolen by her murdered husband. Immediately after, she found herself shackled to Jim Carrey in this Farrelly brothers comedy about a cop with a multiple personality disorder who tries to protect her from her bad-ass ex-boyfriend. Carrey makes the most of the many opportunities to pull faces and fall over and steals far too much screen time from Zellweger, who’s great at the funny stuff. Ultimately annoying. (2000) (3/5)

Extract (TV2, 9.20pm). Writer/director Mike Judge loves to make comedies where people snicker: Beavis and Butt-Head, Austin Powers, Jackass. There’s a testicle gag in here that fits the bill, and once he’s got that out of the way, a story does emerge. It concerns Joel, owner of a flower-extract factory, whose life is spinning out of control. This is gentle satire with a great cast who are having fun: Jason Bateman, Mila Kunis, Kristen Wiig, JK Simmons and Ben Affleck. Without the seasoning of good comic timing, it would be too bland to taste. (2009) (3.5/5)


Ali G Indahouse (Four, 8.30pm). Respect! (2002) (3/5)

Ali G Indahouse
Ali G Indahouse, Tuesday

The Last Starfighter (Prime, 9.30pm). A quaint relic from the days when “gaming” meant putting 20c into the Spacies. This family movie, on at a rather child-unfriendly time, follows the exploits of a boy who plays himself into his favourite video game and is then called on to save the galaxy. Hopelessly cheesy, totally harmless fun in a Spielbergy kind of way. The first film in which all the special effects (other than makeup and explosions) were computer-generated. (1984) (3/5)


Green Zone (TV3, 8.30pm). Matt Damon wades into the hunt for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, learns some uncomfortable truths and goes rogue. If this had any more testosterone, it would grow chest hair. (2010) (3/5)

Young Adult (Sky Movies, Sky 020, 8.30pm). Jason Reitman and Diablo Cody (Juno) strike again. Charlize Theron plays an alcoholic fiction-writing divorcée called Mavis who goes in search of an old boyfriend to wrest him off his wife. Sounds like Theron is having another go at Monster, right? Mavis might be a mean drunk, but she’s a functioning one and still looks fabulous, even as she frightens the undies off the residents of her Minnesota hometown. Much bleaker than Juno – in which the teens sounded like adults – this might be described as a “feel-bad” movie: immature Mavis, dripping with beautiful malice, still sees the world through the eyes of a teen. (2011) 3.5/5)

Films are rated out of 5: 1 (abysmal) to 5 (amazing).
MostReadArticlesCollectionWidget - Most Read - Used in articles
AdvertModule - Advert - M-Rec / Halfpage


Polina – movie review
76492 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Movies

Polina – movie review

by Russell Baillie

A young dancer turns her back on the Bolshoi Ballet to study modern moves in Polina.

Read more
New Zealand International Film Festival: Metro's top picks of what to see
76536 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Movies

New Zealand International Film Festival: Metro's t…

by David Larsen

Whether you plan to see just a few of the movies in the film festival or dozens, you’ve got some decisions to make and Metro is here to help.

Read more
K Road's wahine tattooists: How they made their mark
76538 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Arts

K Road's wahine tattooists: How they made their ma…

by Courtney Sina Meredith

From a lush studio on Karangahape Road, three women practise the art of tattooing.

Read more
How artist couple Liz Maw and Andrew McLeod work and live together
76594 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Arts

How artist couple Liz Maw and Andrew McLeod work a…

by Julie Hill

Painters Liz Maw and Andrew McLeod share their personal and professional lives and are about to exhibit together

Read more
Why the creative duo behind TUR Studio is creating garments the old way
76619 2017-07-19 15:46:53Z Style

Why the creative duo behind TUR Studio is creating…

by Bianca Zander

The creative duo behind Auckland's TÜR Studio lives life as if the industrial revolution never happened.

Read more
Five fun spots perfect for a group outing
76580 2017-07-19 14:20:28Z Auckland Eats

Five fun spots perfect for a group outing

by Paperboy

Break the monotony of winter with a party at one of these five fun Auckland spots

Read more
What to see at the NZ International Film Festival
76576 2017-07-19 13:31:34Z Movies

What to see at the NZ International Film Festival

by Paperboy

Film buffs Caroline Montague and Alexander Bisley pick apart the NZ International Film Festival programme.

Read more
Three Auckland food pop-ups you won't want to miss
76571 2017-07-19 13:04:40Z Auckland Eats

Three Auckland food pop-ups you won't want to miss…

by Paperboy

Merediths, Culprit and Orphans Kitchen take on guest chefs and unusual ingredients at three pop-up events.

Read more