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  • The Smallest Show on Earth

    The Smallest Show on Earth

    ★★★½

    A gentle and effortlessly charming ensemble comedy with a cheeky, Ealing-esque finale, The Smallest Show on Earth is a heartfelt and endearing celebration of independent fleapit cinemas that is even more nostalgic in this age of multiplexes, digital projection and pandemic lockdowns, finding time to both send up and celebrate the underdog movie theatres of old.

    It's a reminder to those of us who have never seen actual film projected that the experience of seeing a movie is just as…

  • The Lower Depths

    The Lower Depths

    ★★★★

    Kurosawa's adaptation of Gorky's play is generally considered to be the superior version, even apparently by Renoir himself and there's no denying that the Japanese rendition is more focused, closer to the source material and tonally more consistent, though both do have a master director behind them bringing enormous visual style to the proceedings.

    Having seen both I'd have to agree, but the fact is that despite its flaws which include a woefully miscast Junie Astor, Renoir's more upbeat, lyrically…

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  • Blade Runner

    Blade Runner

    ★★★★★

    The Final Cut. Cinema City, Norwich.

    Tonight my dream came true. Blade Runner on the big screen. Every time I watch it it's a different experience, there's something new that I didn't notice before, details emerge from the rain and smog that weren't apparent before. Hearing the reverberating sound that begins the film, I was immediately immersed in the tech-noir world of Los Angeles, 2019 and this followed by the opening shots of industrial cityscape sent chills down my spine,…

  • Annihilation

    Annihilation

    ★★★★

    I have to start by saying what an absolute travesty it is that international audiences (myself included) around the world have been robbed of the opportunity to see this in cinemas due to lack of studio faith. This is an insult to audience intelligence, a massive frustration for serious film enthusiasts and a worrisome prospect for talented filmmakers. Netflix once again becomes a last minute dumping ground for unwanted goods, but luckily this time it isn't down to poor quality.…