Italian filmmaker Luca Guadagnino’s feature I Am Love was one of my favourites of 2011, when I caught up with it a year after its North American release. The film, a romantic drama, is anchored by a terrific central role from the Italian-speaking Tilda Swinton. Swinton is in his new erotic drama, A Bigger Splash, where I gather she says nothing at all, playing a rockstar recovering from vocal surgery. Recuperating on an Italian island with her photographer boyfriend (Matthias Schoenaerts), their idyll is interrupted by the arrival of her former lover, played by Ralph Fiennes, and his daughter, Dakota Johnson. A Bigger Splash opens today at The Oxford.
Tim Burton’s adaptation of Alice in Wonderland was unaccountably a huge spring hit in 2010. It was a visual feast, made a deserved star of Mia Wasikowska, and gave Helena Bonham Carter one of her best parts as the Red Queen, but was not a good movie. The sequel, Alice Through The Looking Glass, arrives this weekend, again starring Wasikowska, along with a returning Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, and Bonham Carter. In the director’s chair is Muppet helmer, James Bobbin.
A big box office hit back in Japan, we’re also getting to see the fantasy anime The Boy And The Beast,
This might be the first time a picture by the cult British filmmaker Ben Wheatley has opened in Halifax cinemas: High-Rise is a satire on social climbing based on a JG Ballard novel, starring Tom Hiddleston and Jeremy Irons. I enjoyed it, though it may not be for everyone.
And the fourth superhero movie of the year opens, X-Men: Apocalypse—following Deadpool, Batman v. Superman, and Captain America: Civil War. Though I’m excited to see how Oscar Isaac does as the immortal Egyptian villain, I have no personal association with the character—he was the big bad in X-Men comics in the 1990s, when they were shit and, accordingly, I had stopped reading them. When the movies introduce some of the more interesting characters—Mastermind, Forge, Nimrod, Caliban, or Alpha Flight—I might be more excited. Oh, and when they give Storm some personality. Hopefully, that’ll happen here.