Movies out today: Space survival and real life icons

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Four new movies open in South Africa today, including two biopics. However, if you can only watch one film this week, your choice is clear…

Gravity:
Screening in 3D and 2D is this sci-fi thriller and survival tale from acclaimed director Alfonso Cuarón. Sandra Bullock and George Clooney are astronauts forced to fend for themselves, floating in space when a debris field destroys their shuttle and all communications with Earth.

There’s no doubt about it. Gravity is currently the forerunner for the title of Best Film of the Year. You can read my review here, as well as those of Kervyn and Lourens. In short, Gravity is visually dazzling, a technical masterpiece and a relentlessly nerve-wracking movie experience. Internationally the film has racked up a near-perfect aggregated review score of 98% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.

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Jobs:
Your first big screen biography of the week is this warts-and-all portrayal of Apple founder Steve Jobs. Ashton Kutcher plays Steve from the 1974 into the Noughties, while the rest of the cast includes Josh Gad, Dermot Mulroney, Lukas Haas and Matthew Modine.

According to Kervyn, Jobs is watchable but about as probing an exploration of the business icon’s motivations as a Wikipedia entry, jumping from event to event. Overseas critics agree. Jobs is apparently bland and superficial, offering no new perspective on the man. Good work by Kutcher though.

jobs

Diana:
Based on the book Diana: Her Last Love, this royal biopic looks at the last 2 years of the Princess of Wales’ life… when she apparently was on the cusp of marrying a Pakistani heart surgeon. Naomi Watts plays Diana and Naveen Andrews, Dr. Hasnat Khan.

Rather unsurprisingly, Diana has been slammed by critics as ridiculous romantic melodrama. Simultaneously soppy and dull.

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Paranoia:
In this techno-thriller, Liam Hemsworth plays a disgruntled low-level inventor who finds himself caught in a game of corporate espionage between business rivals Gary Oldman and Harrison Ford. Also with Amber Heard, Embeth Davidtz and Richard Dreyfuss. Based on the novel of the same name.

Despite the strong cast, Paranoia is apparently a massive turkey – dull, cliched and indifferently acted. Much criticism has been directed at the film’s lead, “bland pretty boy” (and Miley-ex) Hemsworth.

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Last Updated: October 18, 2013

Noelle Adams

Sometime Tomb Raider. Full-time Pop Culture fanatic and Geekaissance Woman. Most often spotted outputting Pop Culture opinion pieces, writing fanfic and original genre fare, cosplaying and bringing the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu smackdown. Editor of the Comics and Toys section.

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