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Popcorn and Opinions: January 22

The Oscar nominations have been announced and the race is on! So little time; so many films to see on the big screen before they leave. Fortunately, our in-house movie expert, Howard Elias, is here to tell us how to make the best use of our time this awards season.


I think many people will go see Blackhat because of the scenes that were shot here in Hong Kong, but if they do, I also think they will be rather disappointed. Chris Hemsworth (Thor) plays Nicholas Hathaway, the best, and the best-looking, computer hacker around. After one cyberattack causes a nuclear disaster in China and another targets an American commodities exchange, Chinese intelligence and the FBI join forces and enlist Hathaway to help search the world for the people who are messing around with everyone’s hard drives. It sounds like Blackhat could be exciting but it’s not…at all. Wait for the DVD.

Showing at the AMC, Grand, MCL, and UA cinemas.


American Sniper

Few directors do battle scenes like Clint Eastwood. There’s not a wasted scene in American Sniper, the sort-of-true story of Chris Kyle, the most lethal sniper in US military history. Bradley Cooper (American Hustle) stars as Kyle, a man who has just two missions in life: protect his country and protect his family. This movie is 100% Cooper and his recent Best Actor Oscar nomination is well-deserved recognition of his great work. Go see this film and be prepared for a relentlessly tense experience.

Showing everywhere.



Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is a dark comedy about a washed up actor played by Michael Keaton (Batman) – famous for his role in film as a superhero – as he struggles to mount a Broadway play that he has written, directs, and headlines. Much has already been said about Keaton basically playing himself but that doesn’t matter. Birdman is funny, thrilling, and most of all, brave. It’s the kind of film that wins Oscars. A great film!

Showing everywhere.

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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