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First Tuesday current affairs - Tuesday 7 November 7:00pm start
Manchester film reviews
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Manchester film reviews

Inside Job

Inside Job at Cornerhouse

Reviewed by Anne Ryan March 2011

In praise of the documentary

Documentaries did not begin with Michael Moore – he is only the most high profile of a growing number of predominantly American film-makers, who are tackling the big issues of today, in an incisive and even entertaining way.


Despite the success of Moore's work and Morgan Spurlock's 'Supersize Me' – it is not always easy to get access to these films. In Manchester we are fortunate to have the Cornerhouse, though even these documentaries do not always get a long run. 'Inside Job', is the second film by former academic Charles Ferguson, and deals with the collapse of the US financial system and its subsequent 'rescue'.

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Manchester film reviews

Howl Film Poster

Howl - on general release

Reviewed by Denis Joe March 2011

Starring: James Franco, David Strathairn, Jon Hamm, Jeff Daniels and Treat Williams. Director(s) and Writers: Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman. Animation: Eric Drooker.

Mary Murphy;  “What are you rebelling against ?
Johnny:  “Waddiya got?”
    [The Wild One László Benedek 1954]

Art doesn’t change society it can only reflect it. If Whitman gave voice to the American Dream in Leaves of Grass, then Ginsberg’s Howl! announced the nightmare.


"I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness" is the most famous opening line of any 20th Century poem. It was delivered by Allen Ginffsberg, during a now-legendary group reading at the Six Gallery in San Francisco on Oct. 7, 1955, to an audience of around fifty people.

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Manchester film reviews

Pete PostlethwaiteBrassed Off at Liverpool Philharmonic

Director: Mark Herman; Starring: Pete Postlethwaite, Ewan McGregor, Tara Fitzgerald

Reviewed by Charlotte Starkey January 2011

This is not so much a review as an acknowledgment of a memorable event last week. The screening of Brassed Off at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall on Tuesday 25th January was particularly appropriate and poignant, a fitting tribute to the much admired Pete Postlethwaite who died on 2nd January 2011.


He began his acting career just a few yards from the Philharmonic Hall, at the Everyman in the 1970s. Since then he has touched almost everyone in theatre and film both here and abroad as well as gathering a huge following among audiences. He enriched any scene with his presence. He was a wonderful teacher, actor and northerner born just down the road in Warrington sixty four short years ago. He played in Alan Bleasdale’s The Muscle Market (1981), a separate ‘addition’ to the rest of Boys from the Blackstuff episodes. He has played most major theatres, Bristol Old Vic, Manchester’s Royal Exchange among them, and he has been a lead actor in memorable Shakespearean performances.

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Manchester film reviews

The King's Speech

The King's Speech at Cornerhouse

Director, Tom Hooper; with Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush and Helena Bonham Carter, at various venues around Manchester including Cornerhouse.

Reviewed by Anne Ryan January 2011

'The King's Speech' is one of the first big films of the year and is already a hot tip for the Oscars – it's triumph is to make you forget that this is a British costume drama and appreciate it as the story of a profoundly damaged man, who achieves private happiness through his wife and children, and finally public success with the help of his first real friend.


British actors, trained in a theatrical tradition, are celebrated for their use of language – Colin Firth here is an actor and a man robbed of his voice.

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Manchester film reviews

The Social Network

The Social Network viewed at Cornerhouse, Manchester

Reviews by Anne Ryan, Simon Belt and Fat Roland October 2010

Directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker David Fincher (Se7en and Fight Club) and written by The West Wing’s creator Aaron Sorkin, this absorbing drama chronicles the rise and fall of the three founders of the social-networking phenomenon Facebook, following them to the heights of their success and the depths of jealousy and greed.


Anne Ryan's view...

So what do you do if you're a nerdy kid at college and looking to get laid? Well if you're a girl you might dye your hair, lose weight, have a makeover – even consider getting implants – but if you're a boy, and specifically if you're Mark Zuckerberg – you invent Facebook.

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