Arts: The Week in Review
PLUNKETT & MACLEANE
OVERVIEW: This debut feature from Jake Scott, son of Ridley, sends up the 18th-century swashbuckler. It follows the fortunes of two bad boys, played by Robert Carlyle and Johnny Lee Miller, as they relieve the CRITICAL VIEW: aristocracy of their riches.
"Jake Scott is something of a highwayman himself in the way he steals from other movies," revealed Anthony Quinn, adding: "This thing stands, just about, but it doesn't deliver." "Scott directs in an incoherent style with flashes of visual flair but no idea how to tell a story," carped the Daily Mail. "It sounds better than it plays," decided the Financial Times, while The Guardian deemed it "the most unpalatable highwayman romance since Adam and the Ants' `Stand And Deliver'." "Anachronisms rip huge holes in an already flimsy plot," grumbled The Times. Time Out declared it OUR VIEW: "An enticing set-up with little inspiration in the follow- through."
Scott apes a host of superior movies OUR VIEW: in Plunkett & Macleane, though nothing much underpins this reckless borrowing.
Plunkett & Macleane is on nationwide release, certificate 15. 101 minutes
PRISONER OF 2ND AVENUE
OVERVIEW: Twenty-two years on from The Goodbye Girl, Richard Dreyfuss and Marsha Mason are reunited to play Mel and Edna
in Neil Simon's 1971 comedy about a couple's CRITICAL VIEW: dissatisfaction with life
in New York.
"The characters are not the Prisoners of Second Avenue or New York or the human condition, they are the captives of Neil Simon's complacently limited talent," decided Paul Taylor. "Simon touches on psychological and social truths, but you feel he would be a better writer if he bowed to dramatic logic a little more and the expectations of his audience rather less," noted The Guardian. "Dreyfuss and Mason go in for forms of cuteness that would surely not be allowed even in Hollywood," bleated the OUR VIEW: Financial Times. "Hilarious moments but also many lamentable OUR VIEW: longueurs," opined The Daily Telegraph. Dreyfuss and Mason perform with ruthless efficiency, but Simon's play fails to attain any psychological depth.
The Prisoner of Second Avenue is at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket, London. For bookings and enquiries call 0171-930 8800.
ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN
OVERVIEW: Eighties indie-rock legends Echo and the Bunnymen, headed by the inimitable Ian McCulloch, follow up their 1997 comeback album Evergreen with a seventh LP, What Are You CRITICAL VIEW: Going to Do With Your Life?
"Without the bolstering Britpop effect that helped give some context to Evergreen, they just sound rather pallid and ineffectual here," reflected Andy Gill, continuing, "Song after song gnaws away at weary conclusions and hopeful new beginnings." "This album is far better than its predecessor... McCulloch's voice has never sounded so heartfelt," disagreed the Daily Mail. "There's no spark, edge or tension, complained Time Out, while The Times wrote "It reveals a reflective side to McCulloch's personality that is at odds OUR VIEW: with the cocksure star of popular legend." The NME insisted that "it glides with OUR VIEW: a beautiful... momentum."
This ominously titled album reveals an appealingly meditative side to McCulloch, though it falls short of the sheen of Evergreen.
Evergreen is out on Monday on London records
Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites
TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Peter Lik: The self-proclaimed 'fine-art photographer' whose work sells for millions
Best underrated Christmas movies from Trading Places to While You Were Sleeping
Grace Dent on TV: The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies was a beautifully shot, immensely considered drama
The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies, review: Jason Watkins is brilliant, but real victim Joanna Yeates is reduced to a footnote
Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking Lana Del Rey rape video
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food