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Popcorn and Opinions: March 12

Have you been watching the Oscar nominated films that have finally landed on our shores? If that’s your thing, we have two more for you this week. Our in-house movie expert, Howard Elias, is here to tell us about them and one new film about a very old story. For Howard’s last review click here.

Cinderella

Fans of Downton Abbey, which is pretty much everyone, will be happy to see Lady Rose MacClare (Lily James) play the beloved Ella in this live-action version of the timeless story of the girl with the glass slipper. Written by Chris Weitz, who is also penning the screenplay for the new Star Wars film, directed by Kenneth Branagh, also starring Cate Blanchett as the wicked stepmother and Helena Bonham Carter as the fairy godmother, and produced by Disney Pictures, Cinderella is an absolute winner.

Showing everywhere in English and Cantonese.

Selma

Fifty years ago this week, about 550 everyday people began a march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, seeking equal voting rights for all minorities in the United States. When they tried crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, they were brutally beaten by State Troopers and their newly-deputised posse. That fateful day, now known as “Bloody Sunday”, and those leading up to it are depicted in this powerfully moving film starring David Oyelowo as the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Tim Roth, and Oprah Winfrey (who also co-produced). My only beef with Selma is that it reinterprets or chooses to ignore some pretty important historical facts.

Showing everywhere.

Two Days, One Night

Okay, so Marion Cotillard blew it when she wore that bubble wrap-looking dress at the Oscars a few weeks ago. That doesn’t mean you should miss her fabulous performance in the film that got her there in the first place. In Deux Jours, Une Nuit (as they say in Belgium), Cotillard plays Sandra Bya, a working mother who has to fight to save her job at a small company. But it’s a bit complicated. The company has offered her colleagues a thousand euro bonus each if they agree to have Sandra laid off. Sandra then has a weekend (two days, one night) to convince them to forego the cash and keep her on. Which would you choose?

Showing at the Broadway cinemas.


Howard Elias is a Hong Kong-based film critic and film event organiser. You can hear his reviews every Thursday morning at about 8:40 am on RTHK Radio 4, and read his reviews anytime on his website at howardforfilm.com.

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