Episode 26 : Spirited Snacks For The Eyes

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Added on Wed, 29 Oct 2008 20:46:53 +0100.
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Another podcast! I'm excited. Are you excited?

In Ghost Town, a misanthropic New York dentist played by Ricky Gervais suddenly finds himself able to see ghosts. Eek! Thankfully these are of the 'unfinished business on earth' variety rather than the usual Halloween soul-suckers. One such spook, Greg Kinnear wants him to break up the relation ship between his widow and a human rights lawyer who Frank thinks isn't right for her, leading to situations that are at least nominally rom-com albeit with a commendable absence of schmaltzy sentimentality. Gervais plays his role spiffingly, with a sympathetic yet acerbic, cutting line of humour that's certainly going to be effective for British audiences, although we perhaps wonder how it'll fly outside of this Sceptred Isle. Still, very funny stuff and well worth a look.

Eagle Eye, then. This 'high concept technological thriller' (read: 'Stupid') film sees Shia LaBeouf and Rachel Holloman on the run from the feds in a series of increasingly silly setpieces engineered by a mysterious, seemingly omnipresent and omnipotent voice on the end of a phone. While they're busy working out what's going on and how they got mixed up in it we'll be thinking of Terminator 3, which this shares more DNA with than is probably advisable. For the most part, despite being as mad as a bag of spiders, Eagle Eye is quite good fun, almost in spite of itself. It is pure bubblegum, blockbustery, shock and awe style film and as long as you can stop your pesky brain thing reminding you that it's perhaps the dumbest concept of the year for a film, it's enjoyable for what it is. That being 'silly'.

For his latest effort, Chocolate, Thai martial arts mainstay Prachya Pinkaew takes the unusual step of swapping Tony Jaa for a teenage girl in his latest completely off the wall setup for a bout of kicky punchy head-staving. Let's not consider the plot, which is rarely on the right side of barmy, and instead be distracted by another batch of the finest fight choreography going in cinema today. It's fluid, imaginative and exciting, and while the slender young lead simply doesn't carry the same presence and raw physicality as Jaa and by extension a little less convincing,it's still every bit as enjoyable. Just in a sillier way.

Join us next week for a quantum of solace, but no more than a quantum. We know they do big bags of solace, but we don't want'em. (trad, arrg. Buxton)