FILM: Brixton Blog’s Thursday round-up

A Field in England
A Field in England

By Ashley Clark

Mushrooms, murder, magic and mrobbery at south London’s best cinema this week.

Even though Ben Wheatley’s monochrome, mushroom-addled, Civil War-set A Field In England holds the distinction of being the first British film to ever be released on all platforms simultaneously (including a TV premiere this Friday on Film 4), your best bet is to experience the stark beauty of this characteristically warped affair on the big screen. Following the deeply unsettling likes of Kill List and Sightseers, it further confirms Wheatley as one of Britain’s most distinctive directorial talents.

Also new this week is Sofia Coppola’s baffling latest, The Bling Ring. Based on a true-crime article in Vanity Fair magazine entitled ‘The Suspects Wore Louboutins’, it focuses on a group of spoiled L.A. teenagers (the most odious of them played by Brit Emma Watson) who used the internet to track the whereabouts of various celebrities, then burgled their houses. Intriguing premise, huh? Sadly, in the hands of Coppola, it becomes a banal, repetitive drag, surgically voided of character and interest. That said, it is atmospheric and beautifully shot (it’s also the last film that tragically late cinematographer Harris Savides worked on).

Ironically enough, I have not seen Now You See Me, but something tells me that this slick thriller set in the rarefied world of celebrity magicians (the details of which were thrilling enough to send star Morgan Freeman to sleep midway through a recent interview) mightn’t be the best way you could spend an evening. Sure, it’s got a good cast (Eisenberg, Ruffalo, Caine etc…) but who wants to see CGI magic tricks? I might be wrong, but I reckon you’ll enjoy this Paul Daniels chimpanzee card trick more.

Films continuing their runs include Joshua Oppenheimer’s jawdropping, unmissable history-written-by-the-victors doc The Act of Killing; Richard Linklater’s beautifully observed relationship drama Before Midnight; Zack Snyder’s lengthy, lugubrious Superman reboot Man of Steel; enjoyable apocalybronercom This Is The End; and Steven Soderbergh’s beautifully crafted biopic of Liberace and his younger lover, which all takes place Behind the Candelabra.

If you’re feeling fetch at the weekend, you can catch one of a pair of late screenings of teen-girls-being-horrible classic Mean Girls. Alternately, if your freegan conscience kicks in, why not slum it with the anarchists in Zal Batmanglij’s frequently laughable, but commendably gripping new thriller The East (also afforded a couple of weekend late shows). In terms of rep, the Ritzy’s Discover Tuesdays strand continues with a screening of Bob Rafelson’s haunting 1972 drama The King of Marvin Gardens, starring Jack Nicholson and Bruce Dern as feuding brothers, and you can have what she’s having with a midday Monday screening of enduring romcom When Harry Met Sally.


  1. The movie where Emma Watson is one of the starts is not advisable for young kids and celebrity fans. They might get an idea about getting into the houses of these celebrities and that’s embarrassing.

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