War Horse

•January 14, 2012 • 1 Comment

Rating – ***

Look, I love me some sugar-coated movie schmaltz, of a certain kind. ET, AI: Artificial Intelligence, Forest Gump, Titanic… The Snowman. I’ll freely admit to weeping like a little girl when watching them, and gladly so. I don’t resent my emotional heartstrings being plucked when it feels justified and “earned”. So, we’ve established I’m a sappy little bitch (as a close friend of mine will surely summarise it). I’m also a full-on Spielberg nut, unashamedly worshiping at the genius bearded-one’s alter. When early reviews declared War Horse as “sweeping, epic, a masterpiece” and something along the lines of “a seven tissue weepy”, I was fully prepared to get in line, Kleenex in pocket, and simply let the cinematic treacle wash over me. Hell, I even grew up in the Hampshire countryside where my mum kept several horses over the years. One of which suffered a serious injury after ripping her leg open on a barbed wire fence. From a box-ticking Hollywood executive’s perspective, I’m smack bang within their target demographic.

The film opens with picturesque vistas of the Devon countryside and a rickety little farmhouse, apparently lifted from the set of Babe. There’s even an angry bumbling goose for comic relief. Joey the horse is born, he scampers across the rolling fields, Young Albert looks on in captivated awe. This goes on for about ten minutes, fair enough, it’s setting the scene, we’ll get down to some meaty substance shortly right? Well no, then the characters begin to speak in their thick Devonshire accents (I’m tempted to call it Devonian, as it sounds so primitive). Every line seems to be a variation of “What a remarkable ‘orse that be, says I” or “I don’t know much, but that there be a remarkable creature if ever I saws one….says I……oh-ar……says I”. In fact, the film’s Achilles’ heel throughout it’s entire running time, is the dialogue, both in terms of scripting and delivery. Richard Curtis has brought his putrid and simplistic Love Actually brand to the table (aka, the type of manipulative crap that doesn’t make me cry… well not in the way intended). As Joey the horse is sold into military service he changes owners many times, leading to a fractured episodic structure with frequent patches of minimal interest. Many of the key characters are French and German, but there’s not a subtitle in sight. Instead we are subjected to the worst kind of sub-Allo’! Allo’! silly accents. It really undermines the drama and becomes unintentionally funny. There isn’t even consistency. When marching, the German soldiers count in their mother tongue. One pivotal scene between an English and German soldier is ruined by the line “You speak good English”….yeah no shit, they’ve been rambling away in the King’s the whole time mate! That’s the biggest crime of War Horse, it’s script forces many wonderful actors to perform through a pantomime filter.

Neither was I entirely satisfied by the production design or Kaminski’s cinematography. While the battle scenes look fantastic, any time a farmhouse appears we find ourselves in Telly Tubby land. Perfectly flat green grass, rays of sunlight pouring in through windows… from every angle. Usually Spielberg films pull this off fantastically, he pretty much owns the copyright. But many of the scenes look inexplicably amateur, like somebody trying to imitate this style. So frequently I could feel the presence of the reflector board, positioned mere inches off screen. Worst of all, I swear in one daylight exterior shot, Albert has two shadows as he runs across a field! I’d have to watch again to verify that, but look out for it during an early scene when he is training Joey using an apple to make him follow.

War Horse does have some considerable strengths, as any Spielberg film does. Even his “bad” films feature moments which only a master could orchestrate. In this case it’s a real thrill to see dozens of real horses charging across a real location with real riders…. really. The equine star does a fantastic job, never with that stilted feeling of a trained animal doing things on cue, hitting his mark in return for a Polo mint. No, this horse runs, falls, jumps, nuzzles, whimpers and emotes for real. I suppose what I’m saying is, the scenes combining War and a Horse are magnificent, it’s all in the title really. In a pivotal scene where Joey bolts away from his German captors and charges across no-man’s land, I felt the shiver down my spine I’d been waiting for. John Williams music cranks it up a notch and Framestore deliver some excellent subtle CG enhancements (I only noticed that because I have friends who worked on these shots. However the results are seamless!). This scene leads to an encounter with barbed wire, and that’s where I finally teared up. Possibly due to my aforementioned affinity for this unfortunate scenario.

Its feels odd to be one of the cynical neigh-sayers…….ha get it, neigh….it’s a horse movie, horses say n- …..oh forget it. Yet after seeing the film for the first time last night, this is my honest reaction. Many mainstream critics are proclaiming this as one of Spielberg’s finest, I wish I could agree. Within The Berg’s pantheon of work I’d rank it towards the low end, alongside The Terminal or Always. Films that leave you to question their ultimate “point”, where you wonder what got Spielberg so fired up to make them in the first place. It’s a far cry from Saving Private Ryan or Empire of the Sun. But hey, that horse sure earns his nose-bag, “a remarkable kind of an ‘orse I’d say”.

Jurassic Park: Digital IMAX Presentation

•September 25, 2011 • 4 Comments

Rating – *****

“There’s no doubt, our attractions will drive kids out of their minds”

There are films I love, a wide range of titles I’ll often proclaim to be ranked in my own personal “top 10 or top 20”. This accolade gets clumsily applied to pretty much anything directed by Kubrick, Tarratino, Cameron, or Fincher. The truth is I never collate this list with any degree of precision, and frankly, who would care to read it. Though there is a film, only one I might add, that I can say with absolute certainty, and a level or reverence bordering on pseudo-religion, which sits at the very top of this list unchallenged. Steven Spielberg understands the art of pure entertainment (and it is arguably a valid art form) more than any other filmmaker. For you see, children (and the child-like instincts within adults) love to be scared. But pure fear alone would simply repel and traumatize…. especially any 8 year old as sensitive as I was back in 1993. The stroke of genius was to merge this primal instinct with something else that every kid on the face of the earth loves…… dinosaurs. Spielberg lures us in initially with majestic herbivores to illicit awe and fascination. But then, right when we the audience are eating from the palm of his hand, he turns on us. The storm clouds set in rapidly, the power goes out, and this prehistoric playground is transformed into a garden of nightmares. One that is stalked by fierce animals with very sharp teeth and a relentless drive not just to murder, but devour, the unfortunate protagonists.

“He left us!”

Speaking of the human cast, almost every other review I’ve read of Jurassic Park over the years includes a sentence similar to, if not verbatim “the characters may be cardboard, but the real stars are the spectacular dinosaur effects”. Popular wisdom would appear to have cultivated the notion that Jurassic Park’s human characters are forgettable or unremarkable. As if simply by being a mega-money-spinning blockbuster (the most profitable of all time at one point) denies it the luxury of a good script, that this weakness is somehow expected or simply there by default, I couldn’t disagree more. Firstly, David Koepp’s screenplay impressively balances the scientific rhetoric with authentic human drama, comedic touches, and dozens of highly quotable lines. At the centre of this is Jeff Goldblum’s career defining portrayal of Ian Malcolm, he effortlessly forms the charismatic core around which the talented ensemble cast orbit. Goldblum’s naturalistic, almost garbled delivery is perfectly suited to lines which range from thought-provoking to wryly amusing. “I’m always on the lookout for the future ex-Mrs Malcolm”. “You stood on the shoulders of geniuses to accomplish something as fast as you could, and before you even knew what you had, you’ve patented it, and packaged it, you’ve slapped it on a plastic lunchbox, and now you’re selling it“.

Richard Attenborough also shines as John Hammond. Deviating from the somewhat colder character in Crichton’s source novel, Attenborough initially portrays him as a mischievous almost childlike entrepreneur. Yet bubbling under the surface is a ruthless and reckless determination (think Walt Disney meets Rupert Murdoch), one that comes crashing down in the latter stages of the film. Hammond is suddenly humbled and vulnerable, the wizard behind the curtain. Nestled amongst a parade of gripping setpieces is a character-based scene I’ve always loved. Ellie discovers Hammond sitting alone in the darkened cafeteria, wistfully tucking-in to pots of melting icecream. In this quiet moment of contemplation he recalls one of his early forays into family entertainment, a quaint little flea circus. “They all moved, motorized of course, but people would swear they could see the fleas. “I see the fleas, mummy! Can’t you see the fleas?” Clown fleas, high wire fleas, fleas on parade”. Then he pauses and with a level of tender sincerity that transcends a mere “monster movie”, he says “But with this place… I wanted to show them something that wasn’t an illusion, something that was real, something they could see and touch…. An aim not devoid of merit”. Accompanied by John Williams’ masterful score (almost reminiscent of a infant’s bedtime musicbox in this scene) I find it incredibly touching. Perhaps one could transfer Hammond’s sentiment to Spielberg’s own goals as a master cinematic showman?

So how about the dinosaurs themselves, is there anything new to be said? Well yes, seeing the newly restored film projected pristinely on London’s giant IMAX screen put to rest any fears that ILM’s now comparatively “prehistoric” CG would somehow fall apart after 18 years of visual effects “advancement”. If anything it reaffirms the baffling anomaly that creature VFX have mostly stagnated, or actually regressed in the last two decades. All rose-tinted admiration aside, sure, today I might be inclined to suggest a little more texture detail in the brachiosaur’s skin, or perhaps dial down the motion blur on the gallimimus as they leap over that log. But then we come to the Tyrannosaur and the Velociraptors… they just look real. Always have, always will. Back in the early 90s, Phil Tippet’s animators were accustomed to manipulating steel armatures to produce old-school “go-motion” Harryhausen-like creatures. The abrupt leap to animating with a keyboard and mouse was too much. So a solution was devised. Similar articulated creature props were created, but they were rigged with fancy gubbins so the movement was recorded and translated directly to the computer’s twin CG model. A strange pioneering blend of stop motion and motion capture which appears to have been long forgotten. Combine this level of talent with the underlying fear that what they were doing might fail miserably. The results are sublime and unbeaten, the CG dinosaurs have a soul, every nuanced gesture feels authentic. Just watch the T Rex as it rolls the Land Cruiser over with it’s head, then pins down the stricken vehicle with one foot. Suddenly the rear tyre catches it’s attention, glistening in the rain. The rex instinctively lunges and bites it, only to recoil with dissatisfaction. These fantastic details are enhanced further by Gary Rydstrom’s frankly incredible, ground-shaking sound effects, which further unite the already seamless blend between CG and animatronic creatures.

“The world has just changed so radically and we’re all running to catch up”

Jurassic Park is far more than “just a movie” to me. It has genuinely influenced the course of my life. As a spellbound 8 year old leaving the cinema with my Dad, I couldn’t quite comprehend how it was possible to make a film like this…. but I knew I had to find out! Cue many happy summer days of recreating the film in my back garden via forced perspective rubber dinosaur hand puppets, a VHSC video camera, school mates…. and my reluctant little sister. Throw in the Hasbro toys, trading cards, bedsheets, Sega Mega Drive games, making of book, the novel and comics… yeah I was obsessed (ok, I still am!) . I think for many children of my generation JP was “our Star Wars”. Now almost 2 decades later, these people are old enough to be working in the film industry, and no doubt, like me, many of them are. Whenever the slightly laborious aspects of filming or post-production threaten to cloud my mood, I just remember why I’m doing it in the first place. To aspire to one day crafting something as accomplished and thrilling as the film which first ignited my creative ambitions, that surely is a goal worthy of pursuit… or perhaps I should say “An aim not devoid of merit”.

The Expendables

•August 25, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Rating – **

Don’t get me wrong, I like Sylvester Stallone, but these days he resembles a stroke victim whose arms have been amputated then replaced by a pair of erect vein-covered elephant penises (see photo above). There’s nothing hugely wrong with that (although IFAW might have some stern words with him), but it serves as a ludicrous distraction any time he contemplates getting “serious” as an actor. To be fair it’s not just Stallone. Half the cast have serious speech impediments or facial ticks which lead you to suspect they are all secretly deaf and faintly retarded after years of heat butting lumps of frozen meat. Their delivery of most of the dialogue supports this theory. However the one man who truly gets a chance to shine is Jason Statham. Less an actor, more the embodiment of a British Bull Terrier on a rampage, and that’s what makes him great. There’s still nowhere near enough great action in this film, but Statham gets the lion’s share in the few scenes which flirt with “awesomeness”. Mickey Rourke brings an unexpected touch of dignity to a monologue scene where he recalls some dark times in Bosnia. The actual script is unremarkable, but Rourke demonstrates his brilliance by injecting genuine sorrow to his delivery. Unfortunately the scene feels totally unrelated to the rest of the film, it’s like channel-hopping between Rambo and Schindler’s List.     

Elsewhere, The Expendables misses far too many targets.  A much hyped Stallone/Willis/Arnie on-screen smack down is nothing more than a bitchy mothers meeting in a church. Overall, the film simply isn’t well made, or fun enough, to justify the recruitment of its ensemble cast.

Piranha 3D

•August 22, 2010 • 3 Comments

Rating – ****

In 1975 Matt Hooper narrowly avoided becoming shark chum in Steven Spielberg’s timeless masterpiece, Jaws. Hooper 1, Fish-kind 0. Well, the opening minutes of Piranha see the score settled in spectacular (and ludicrous) fashion. Richard Dreyfuss reprises his iconic role in a fanboy pleasing cameo. We see Hooper’s presumably blissful retirement come to a swift and bloody end on the shores of Lake Victoria. Is there time to morn? Hell no, bring on the 3D boobs! As you put on those dorky glasses and begin munching your popcorn, sit back and prepare to smile.

Piranha 3D delivers everything you could ever want from a schlocky B-movie about porn-star-munching prehistoric fish!  Alexandre Aja directs the non-stop carnage with genuine wit and a clear love of tasteless trash. It’s easy to dismiss such lowbrow thrills, but how often are you genuinely entertained to the point where you want to cheer, laughing so hard you’re forced to simply give up wiping away the tears. That’s a real achievement, and it takes somebody intelligent to craft something so wonderfully “dumb”, and actually make it work this well. Remember how much you wanted to love Snakes on a Plane? Well this is the movie you’ve been waiting for. Aja has also done something even James Cameron never managed; he’s made a great Piranha movie! I expect Cameron himself will be first in line to give Aja a pat on the back, especially as this is also a glorious showcase for the 3D medium. Not to mention the several nods to Titanic scattered amongst the mayhem. Stereoscopic thrills were born of this genre, and it still fits like a glove. After all the lofty ambitions of Cameron and Zemeckis, perhaps this is what 3D really does best… it allows murderous CGI fish to regurgitate a severed penis, which floats gracefully above the audience, constantly threatening to brush the tips of their noses. Not to mention the far more welcome onslaught of Kelly Brook and co’s wonderfully rendered boobies. Fancy some underwater lesbian ballet? You got it. At one point we see a topless girl parasailing across the lake. She dips into the crystal clear water and it quickly turns claret. Once she remerges, she’s become bottomless too, and I’m not just talking about her lack of bikini. The gore in this film is very strong, and truly marvelous. Inventive, sickening, tasteless, very bloody and constantly hilarious! A face is ripped off by a boat propeller, bodies are sliced in half, and the eponymous piscine critters munch their way through many orifices, or simply gouge out new ones. Another treat comes courtesy of Christopher Lloyd, where the hell has he been lately?! His cameo as the local fish expert is a joy. Lloyd dials his trademark nutball persona up to 11 and beyond, Emmet Brown is alive and well!

Criticisms? Occasional flaws in the 3D conversion are apparent. The opening titles will give you a headache, it impossible to focus on them and the pin sharp background at the same time! Another word of warning to all other would-be 3D filmmakers, don’t attempt a shot with defocused wire mesh fencing in the foreground, it will really screw up the audience’s depth perception. Aja stated in a recent interview that he wanted the killer fish to be “photo-realistic”. Frankly he has failed, but if anything, their cartoonish appearance just adds to the fun. They come across as aquatic gremlins, appropriate as Joe Dante also directed the original Piranha. Things come to an end all too abruptly, but by that point you’ll be too delirious to care. Piranha is a sick and silly treat, recalling the joys of last year’s Drag Me to Hell. This is mandatory viewing for every teenage boy, student, and those of us just craving some simple guilty fun at the cinema. Oh, and bring on Jackass 3D, as glimpsed in a trailer beforehand.                        

Inception

•July 30, 2010 • 5 Comments

Rating – ****

I didn’t want to write a review of Inception after my first viewing. But two weeks later and straight after the second, in Imax no less, all of Nolan’s ideas, the booming operatic score and the often breathtaking images have crystallised in my mind. Was my opinion planted there by Dom Cobb? Quite possibly.

This is a world where your ideas and secrets can be stolen by an individual secretly entering your subconscious. It poses a tantalising question, why not plant an idea there instead? By now you’ll probably have heard that Inception is “clever”. This is true, and at times it may be slightly guilty of wallowing in self satisfaction. Fortunately, being “clever” isn’t all that’s going on here. It’s the human touches which define this deeply layered labyrinth of cortex-massaging cerebral espionage. It never implodes up it’s own arse the way The Science of Sleep did, for example. Although it has to be said, Gondry’s film created a far more accurate depiction of how weird real dreams are. In Nolan’s world the characters all look impeccably cool and it’s left to the streets, vehicles and staircases around them to behave all trippy. I don’t know about you, but if one of my random dreams was actually put up on screen, Leo and the gang would probably be dragging themselves along the floor by their nostrils, sliding through a sea of raspberry flavoured marmite, playing the banjo with their toes and singing pop goes the weasel in reverse the whole time. Yeah, I’d like to see you stay focused on your mission in one of my dreams Dicaprio! The logic in the film does seem slightly contradictory too. Many aspects are explained in rigorous detail via scenes of pure (almost clumsy?) exposition. Yet the technology behind much of this is left totally unexplained. Take Ellen Page’s Ariadne, she’s the dream architect, she must build the world the mission will take place in. She has a workshop, we see a few of her sketches and scale models. But how do her designs end up in the dream? Does she use 3D software? Is it generated entirely from memory? If so, she must be concentrating bloody hard, very tricky when there’s a freight train tearing up the pavement, or so I would imagine. I’m not that bothered by things like this, I love movie logic and I embrace pure escapism. It just seems a bit odd coming from such a focused filmmaker.

The acting is strong throughout. Dicaprio creates a believably tortured yet determined hero in Dom Cobb. The entire cast is superb, though perhaps Tom Hardy manages to steal the show? He brings mischievous panache to his quick witted and rebellious character Eames. This is a man who clearly loves to indulge in theatricality, even some occasional cross dressing… well, sort of.

Christopher Nolan is a director who fuses two normally conflicting sensibilities, the “Kubrickian” auteur, and the Spielbergian crowd pleaser, into one harmonious whole. Spielberg himself has pulled off this trick many times too…. but hey, it’s still a decent analogy. You can tell that Nolan is a fanboy at heart, part of him probably just wanted to shoot a cool action scene with guys fighting on the ceiling. But he’s smart enough to bring more to the table, he crafts impeccably paced and intelligent thrillers around those mainstream urges. Inception bursts onto the cinematic landscape as a fully formed instant science fiction classic. If I’ve sounded too harsh it’s purely because this is a damn good film and a little nitpicking won’t harm it. Will any film like this ever send a shiver down my spine again? I mean one so deep it bathes every nerve ending in the glow of pure awe, the way that the original Matrix did. Or how about that first time The Pixies posed the question “Where is my mind?” as the end credits of Fight Club rolled? I fear that those days are lost forever, I think my 14 year old brain just soaked up happiness much more efficiently than the crusty 25 year old sponge that rattles around my skull these days. Still, Inception comes close, damn close. There is still hope; after all, “You mustn’t be afraid to dream a little bigger darling”.

Toy Story 3

•July 20, 2010 • 11 Comments

Rating – *****

A few weeks ago my parents turned what should have been a relaxing day chilling at their house (and consuming their food resources) into a backbreaking and surprisingly emotional task…. clearing out my old wardrobe. For many people this would mean sorting through a few moth-eaten clothes, not me. That wardrobe is a tardis-like vault, stuffed to breaking point with toys, books and games. The afternoon provided a trip down memory lane. Fortunately, the main victim, and recipient of a one way ticket to the local dump, was a more recent addition, Empire magazine. Yes, a decade’s worth of old issues, in a stack so heavy Superman would have thought twice about shifting them downstairs to the car. I managed it though, probably fuelled by contempt. 4 stars for Pearl Harbour? Do one Empire, your destiny now lies in a cat litter tray!

But now I’m rambling. The point is, I couldn’t get rid of most of my toys. They’re more than just AA battery-gobbling plastic monstrosities, they’re cherished memories. I clearly remember the exact moment I unwrapped my Jurassic Park T-Rex on Christmas Morning 1993. He’s still f***ing awesome, and he’s going nowhere! I feel the same way about Toy Story. My sister and I watched our VHS copy endlessly. Technically she owned the Buzz Lightyear doll (along with Woody, Rex and Hamm), but I clocked up more than my fair share of playtime with them too. Anyone of a similar age and who also holds Toy Story in such high esteem will be an emotional wreck by the end of this flawless conclusion to the trilogy. It’s scary to think that the original film is now 15 years old, we’ve all grown up (well, sort of).

That’s why Toy Story 3 works, it acknowledges the passage of time. The result is a cuddly yet swift and emotional sucker punch straight to the heart.  While Andy packs his bags for college, Buster the family dog comes waddling in to his room, dragging his belly and covered in wiry, greying fur. The short lifespan of a dog is tragic and it contrasts sharply with the presumably immortal toys. Buster is blissfully unaware of this, but Woody and Buzz know exactly what’s in store for them. They’re cursed with wearing fixed (and slightly creepy) smiles, but deep down they’re crying out to be loved by their owner again. Watching silently through a tiny gap in the toy chest lid, they contemplate an eternity of loneliness in the attic, or maybe even destruction. This is all within the first 5 minutes of the film, to be honest I was already on the verge of tears. By the finale I resembled a particularly passionate England supporter kneeling outside the exit gates of a South African stadium.

These films have always been about the characters and their relationships. The groundbreaking visuals and suspense filled action set pieces are simply icing on the cake. Part 3 achieves the neat trick of maintaining the familiar look of the original films, while subtly pushing the technology even further, achieving perfection in the process. For the first time in the series, this mean stereoscopic 3D, and it’s beautiful. No gimmicks, no headaches or distractions, it’s immersive and simply breathtaking. But the truth is, you could watch Toy Story 3 on a mobile phone screen and the spirit of the film will still shine through. I’ll resist discussing plot specifics. All you need to know is that this is the real deal. It’s hilarious, heartbreaking, and uplifting in a way that most other films can only dream of. Michael Keaton’s Ken doll nearly steals the show. Meanwhile, all the main characters are just as you fondly remember them. It’s the little touches like Hamm’s encyclopaedic knowledge of product names and Rex’s eternal optimism. I loved the opening fantasy sequence. It revisits the opening of the original film, but this time we see it through Andy’s imagination as he says the immortal lines “I brought my attack dog, with a built-in forcefield! ….Well I brought my dinosaur, who eats forcefield dogs!” Pure Magic.

Children of all ages will still watch these films hundreds of years from now, and in doing so, they will never get old. I mean “in spirit”, not literally… nothing can stop the relentless onset of wrinkles and increased risk of bowel cancer…. feel free to use that quote on the poster.

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

•May 24, 2010 • 6 Comments

Rating – *

The most surprising and perhaps alarming deficiency of Prince of Persia is that even the cameraman, editor and boom operator should hang their heads in shame. In this modern age of wannabe franchise starters, sequels, prequels, remakes and adaptations of everything from amusement park rides to park benches, the one element we should be able to count on is that the production crew will do their job well. The script may read like it was written by an autistic sparrow, but at least stuff will “look wicked….innit”. Well not anymore, visually and aurally Prince of Persia more frequently resembles an episode of Fort Boyard than a polished jewel in Lord Bruckheimer’s crown. Crown? Why yes, the one he wears while ruling his production empire ….of shit.

Actually that’s unfair, I dig Pirates of the Caribbean quite a bit. Yet that was mainly down to the talent of Gore Verbinski as a director. For the most part he managed to overcome an increasingly hackneyed screenplay, which bogged down much of the third film. Make no mistake, the worst scene in the Pirates trilogy is still ten times better than anything on show here. Prince of Persia wishes it was Michael but deep down knows it’s only Jermaine. I won’t waste the precious skin on the end of my fingers by typing up finer details of the plot. I was mainly just distracted by the sheer shoddiness of the images flickering before my eyes. Had my expressions been filmed, the footage could easily be mistaken for that of a man forced to witness the messy barnyard birth of a two headed cow.

However, upon leaving the cinema I kept thinking about one scene in particular. A memorable set-piece perhaps? A witty or endearing one liner? Alas no. Instead I thought about the scene where a live snake is used as the vessel to conceal a precious (also long and thin) dagger. Ben Kingsley’s henchman picks up the wriggling creature then slices open its belly to retrieve said artefact. Before it’s execution surely that snake should have resembled a sports sock pulled rigid over a broom handle? Not only would this have brought some much needed amusement, but also logic, to this soulless pantomime of a film. Oh, and are we witnessing an unwelcome Papyrus font renaissance? James Cameron inexplicably used it to promote Avatar, now it shows up once again! Send it back to the laminated menus of half the curry houses in London, the only place it belongs!