6:00 PM, 21st April, 2012
I have always regarded Tintin as more than just a kids' comic book hero. He's resourceful, full of boy scout never-give-in tenacity and is blessed with more than a bucketful of luck in getting himself and his loyal Snowy (the super-dog smarter than most humans) out of nasty jams into which their dogged (no pun intended) investigations have placed them. This latest adaptation is well rendered with characters Tintin addicts have long loved from Hergé's popular comics, including Thomson and Thompson, the bumbling detectives whose many 'disguises' only serve to advertise their presence, and the hard-talking Captain Haddock with his famous colourful language.
For those familiar with the "Tintin" books, the movie is a clever combination of "The Secret of the Unicorn" and "Red Rackham's Treasure", co-written by Edgar Wright (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead) and Steven Moffat (head writer on the last two series of "Doctor Who"). Our intrepid reporter Tintin and Captain Haddock are set on a treasure hunt for the bounty of the Unicorn, a sunken ship commanded by Haddock's ancestor who hid clues to the treasure's whereabouts in models of the ship, one of which Tintin possesses.
Director Spielberg has played the movie at a younger crowd, with heaps of very fast action, and as such we see less of Tintin's famously powerful deductive skills than fans may expect. However, this film is still great fun and will be well enjoyed by all, particularly those interested in excitement and adventure.
8:00 PM, 21st April, 2012
Selfish, old, wealthy socialite, Elizabeth Hunter (Rampling) is dying and has summonsed her two adult children from Europe to attend to her and wait for her to die. Basil (Rush) is a fading London stage actor, while Dorothy (Davis) unsuccessfully married a minor French aristocrat. The two children attend as much to ensure they get the inheritance as to display family loyalty.
This little story expands to encompass and entangle expanding circles of staff, friends and acquaintances. Basil and Dorothy struggle to keep up appearances and Elizabeth still rules the household, even from her death bed. Affairs are revealed, sad secrets come out, and politicians lobby for favour.
The storm in the film’s title is a cyclone that hit the family when they were holidaying somewhere on the Great Barrier Reef a few decades before the main action, a storm of more than just physical consequences. As with the rest of the film, the storm’s full effect is slowly revealed.
This film is a quiet study of character. Elizabeth’s domination of her children, squashing Basil’s and Dorothy’s spirits until they must escape Australia to make something of themselves. The consequences of Basil’s constant pursuit of pretty women and Dorothy’s own flaws are revealed and have far-reaching affects on the family. Despite the lack of explosions, car chases and murders, this film keeps one enthralled to the end.