January 1st 2016 releases

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Just where is that snake going?

January 1st 2016 RELEASES

AT ANY PRICE (18)

A farming family’s business is threatened by an unexpected crisis, further testing the relationship between a father and his rebellious son. At any price? Bombed catastrophically at the US box office making less than half a million dollars.

 

FALL OF THE KRAYS (15)

You  “@#!#*+! Slaaaaggg!  #!@%! me?  #!*”+@ you, you  *%!@#!* muppet! I’ll %”#%@ on your ^”!@#!* head, you  #*!”^@! Whooops-a-daisy! Me and my brother have tripped up and fallen down! (You’re an idiot –Ed)

 

JOY (12A)

Hoorah! Jennifer Lawrence invents something that makes her a fortune. What joy! (You really are an idiot! – Ed)

 

SLEEPING WITH OTHER PEOPLE (15)

A good-natured womanizer and a serial cheater form a platonic relationship that helps reform them in certain ways, while a mutual attraction sets in. Ooh err!

 

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THE DANISH GIRL (15)

In somewhat typical style the Editor on seeing the publicity head shot photo for The Danish Girl told us, ‘You would, wouldn’t you?’ until it was pointed out that this was actor Eddie Redmayne as transgender pioneer Einer Wegener /Lili Elbe. It was all too much for him as he stormed off presumably having been reminded of a rather unfortunate liaison he had whilst on holiday in Thailand.

The Danish Girl is the true story of the artist Einer Wegener and his marriage to Gerda as he slowly discovers his feminine side and the ends he goes to to live a new life as a woman he calls Lili resulting in pioneering surgery throughout which he keeps a diary on which the film is inspired.

Having won an Oscar for ‘The Theory of Everything’ before appearing in the disastrous ‘Jupiter Ascending’ ( or ‘Uranus Descending’ as it should have been called) this is a return to form for the actor and is a stunning performance in a complex and sensitive role.  His looks lend themselves to the role of a transgender person and is sensitively played in a role which could have so easily descended into David Walliams Little Britain campery with him crying out, ‘I’m a lady!’ at every inopportune moment.  But it’s equally Alicia Vikander who balances out the film as his wife who initially and unknowingly instigates his journey.  She too has had a similar career path and after having been so good in ‘Ex-Machina’ plunged into hopelessness with last Summer’s bomb, ‘The Man from U.N.C.L.E.’ and returns in a beautifully played role.

If there are any complaints it’s probably that when she initially gets him to model a dress and tights for a portrait she is working on that it prompts his journey which seems a little too convenient as many in the transgender community will protest that there is far more to it than that. But Redmayne is utterly mesmerising in a nuanced performance none more so than when going to a party dressed as his alter ego Lili for a dare before an unsuspecting male falls for him. It’s the fallout from this that puts a strain on the marriage with where his wife having indulged him finds that she has unwittingly awoken his unspoken gender issue and finds she is losing him and heartbreakingly tells her husband, ‘We were playing a game!’ It’s all too late as he endeavours to assume the affectations of women he sees. His wife finds herself further compromised finding that it is only her paintings of Lili that art dealers are interested in buying .

Inevitably it all ends tragically but this is engaging storytelling by director Tom Hooper who seems to embrace true life stories having filmed ‘The Damned Utd’ and ‘The Kings Speech’ previously and this is  a subject sure to provoke discussion. With both leads already nominated for Golden Globes which are always a pointer for the Oscars this is a film that will rightly attract awards and may win Redmayne a second consecutive Academy Award and rightly so.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5p944mmDyL0

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