N.Y. Times weighs in on anticipated films | The Moviegoer

Thursday, December 21, 2006

N.Y. Times weighs in on anticipated films

Posted By on Thu, Dec 21, 2006 at 7:25 AM

On "Letters From Iwo Jima," A.O. Scott writes,

. . . A few scenes serve as hinges joining this movie to “Flags of Our Fathers.” While “Letters From Iwo Jima” seems to me the more accomplished of the two films — by which I mean that it strikes me as close to perfect — the two enrich each other, and together achieve an extraordinary completeness. They show how the experience of war is both a shared and a divisive experience, separating the dead from the living and the winners from the losers, even as it binds them all together. . .

On "The Painted Veil," Manohla Dargis writes,

. . .Even better, the new film gives us ample opportunity to spend time with Ms. Watts, whose remarkable talent helps keep movie faith and love alive, even in the tinniest, tiniest vehicles.  . .

An inveterate stealer and masticator of scenes, Mr. Norton is very fine here, especially early on, before his billing gets the better of the story and he begins riding around heroically on horseback.  . .

Ms. Watts keeps that nose in the air far longer than most actresses would dare. She risks our love and earns our awe, ensuring that we never lose sight of the woman even when the film almost does.

On "Venus," A.O. Scott writes,

. . . As “Venus” moves casually along, a deep sadness starts to gather around its edges, casting a shadow over the mischievous good humor that is Maurice’s default mood. His mortality portends a larger loss, the eclipse of an approach to life and art that the great British actors of the mid-20th century, from Laurence Olivier to Michael Caine, embodied with such ease and charisma. It is not easy to define that special, paradoxical glamour Mr. O’Toole wears like a well-worn, perfectly tailored jacket — he is a self-made aristocrat, a genuine pretender, a selfless narcissist — but whatever it is, he still has it. Seeing a picture of the young Maurice — the young Peter O’Toole — in a newspaper, someone exclaims, “He were gorgeous.” Indeed he were, and so he is.

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