... at least for Martha. She's signed up for Cineworld's Unlimited offer, where for £11.99 a month, she can see as many films as she wants. Add in Orange Wednesdays, and the LoveFilm subscription (yes, we're going to stop that one), that makes for a lot of films in the last few weeks.

Starting with the least impressive and working up:


No Country for Old Men - I guess you either really like a Coen Brothers film, or you just don't get it. For us was one of the latter ones. Slow and glorying in unredeeming violence, it hardly had a plot, and had an ending that we couldn't figure out. The only stand-out part was a terrific portrayal of psycopath by Javier Bardem, and a an subtle but still impressive turn by Kelly Mcdonald. ★★

Possession - adapted from A.S.Byatt's novel. Hopefully the novel is richer than this unlikely and formulaic film version. Me: ★★ Martha: ★★★

Revolutionary Road - Martha found it charming and gentle, but I found it slow and depressing. (And Kate Winslet curiously wooden, as if the effort to do the American accent was too much for her.) We saw it with some other friends, and none of us felt enlarged by it. Me: ★★½, Martha: ★★★½

In the Valley of Elah - Another slow one, but with more interesting plot, with some tension and more interesting characters. ★★★½

Seven Pounds - Martha saw this with friends. Martha: ★★★

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - An intriguing tale, from the novel by F.Scott Fitzgerald. Some amazing SFX, and some interesting exploration of the life lived backwards. But it never quite engaged me in the way I hoped it would; I didn't find Benjamin's childhood years had the tension it should, and his senescence was hardly touched on. I prefered Martin Amis' Time's Arrow, which has a related plotline, and for me held the tension better, and got more under the surface of the life backwards plot. Me ★★★½, Martha ★★★★½

Doubt - Just seen my Martha. Great performances by Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep. ★★★★½

The Reader - just seen by Martha. Sounds like a much better performance by Kate Winslet. ★★★★½

Secret Life of Bees - just seen by Martha. ★★★★½

Slumdog Millionnaire - deservedly winning Baftas and lots of other awards for director Danny Boyle and others involved. Go see it. ★★★★★

AuthorJonathan Clark