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What’s Worth Watching – June 2013

WhatsWorthWatchingJune

June. It’s meant to be summer but the weather is all over the shop with lovely lovely one day and pissy pissy the next. Ah well, don’t complain as there’s 30 days of pretty solid filmmaking winging its way to Irish cinemas this month with something for everyone it seems.

As always don’t forget to look back on our May listings to see linked reviews for what we saw, and needless to say if you’re reading this then you should be listening to the Spooool.ie podcast, which is in the right sidebar and on iTunes now.

Irish Cinema Release Dates – June 2013

7 June 2013

14 June 2013

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21 June 2013

28 June 2013

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#1 – Behind the Candelabra

June 7th

01candelabra

So then, this is actually it. The final Steven Soderbergh film to show up in cinemas. The internet got a little excited and made lots of snide comments last week when it was announced that Soderbergh had signed up to direct a new TV series with Clive Owen. In fairness to the man, he only ever said he was giving up feature films so we shouldn’t be that surprised, I guess it just seemed very soon. Like our break-up meant nothing to him.

Behind the Candelabra premiered on the big screen at Cannes last week and then became HBO’s biggest TV movie debut in years when it played last Sunday night. It tells the story of Liberace, a man I first heard of in the early 90s when I rented a VHS copy of 1985’s Wrestlemania I. He would die two years later. This film tells the story of the entertainer’s relationship with his lover Scott Thorson with Michael Douglas playing Liberace and Matt Damon as the young stud. It’s very good.

Oh and a dog from the movie, Baby Boy, won the 2013 Palme Dog.

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#2 – The Iceman

June 7th

The Iceman

I was lucky enough to see The Iceman nine months ago when it played to absolutely no buzz at TIFF 2012. I only attended because it featured one of Spooool’s favourites, Michael Shannon, as a hitman with really bitchin’ facial hair. The supporting cast of characters makes the film more than worthwhile though, with names like Winona Ryder, Chris Evans, James Franco, Stephen Dorff, David Schwimmer and Ray Liotta all popping up. It’s a slow-moving but insightful character study that methodically covers the life of a man who successfully balanced being a real family man with Polish roots and an ice-cold contract killer who killed over 100 people.

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#3 – Man of Steel

June 14th

Man of Steel

SPEAKING OF MICHAEL SHANNON…

(what a seamless link)

I know no-one else thought that Bryan Singer’s Superman Returns (2006) was any good, but I loved it. But I also love Zack Snyder, the director of the re-re-boot Man of Steel. Well OK, “love” is a strong word but it’s safe to say I took a whole lot more from Sucker Punch and Watchmen than your average movie-goer.

Henry Cavill plays Supes, Amy Adams is Lois Lane and our bad-guy General Zod is played by Michael Shannon. Throw in the two most recent Robin Hoods (Russell Crowe and Kevin Costner) in double-daddy duties as Jor-El and Jonathan Kent and you’ve got a fantastic cast. Oh and some guy called Chris Nolan is producing.

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#4 – Before Midnight

June 21st

Before Midnight

Before Midnight came out of nowhere last winter. Reports indicated that director Richard Linklater and leads Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy had seemingly decamped to Greece to “write” when in fact they were there to film. But as Joss Whedon also found out with Much Ado About Nothing, it’s a real joy when a news story breaks saying “so eh, we have a finished film that you guys don’t know about!”, rather than the usual tidbit stories about casting and then months of tabloidy on-set photos.

The film is the third time we’ll have checked in with the characters of Celine (Delpy) and Jesse (Ethan) who have shared one of cinema’s great love affairs in Before Sunrise (1995) and Before Sunset (2004). These characters and films will mean a lot to a great deal of people and I’m one of them. I’m just hoping that Linklater didn’t kill anyone off so as we’ll have something to look forward to in 2022 and 2031…

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#5 – Stories We Tell

June 28th

Stories We Tell

Canada’s film-darling Sarah Polley’s new documentary Stories We Tell is the follow-up to her (in my book, disappointing) narrative-based film Take This WaltzPolley is as well-known for starring in films like Dawn of the Dead and Splice as she is directing but the promise shown in her directorial debut, 2006’s Away from suggests her true vocation is behind the camera.

I know very little about this film and want to keep it that way. It’s a critically acclaimed documentary where Polley explores some secrets about her family and reveals much more. Or something. I won’t read any summaries or watch any clips (yes I still embedded a trailer – I haven’t watched it) as I’d like to go in there as blind as possible.

It played at TIFF last autumn (I missed it due to money and work problemzzz) and has shown up at US festivals since then but as far as I know it never made it across the Atlantic.

Anticipation.

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Nigel

Nigel loves stupid films almost as much as he likes clever films. He'll watch anything but is usually drawn to documentaries, North American independent films, Irish cinema and gung-ho, balls-to-the-walls Hollywood blockbusters. Here's what he's been watching.