Wednesday 03 February 1999
Director: John Madden
Starring: Gwyneth Paltrow, Joseph Fiennes
See The Independent Recommends, right.
West End: ABC Tottenham Court Road, Barbican Screen, Clapham Picture House, Empire Leicester Square, Notting Hill Coronet, Odeon Camden Town, Odeon Kensington, Odeon Marble Arch, Odeon Swiss Cottage, Ritzy Cinema, Screen on Baker Street, Screen on the Green, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Fulham Road, Virgin Trocadero. And local cinemas
Director: Chris Columbus
Starring: Susan Sarandon, Julia Roberts
Notebooks out for your authentic Mom Movie recipe. Lay a pastry of wisecracks, add tears and shrink-wrapped life lessons, then ice it all off with a dedication to the director's own "mom". Stepmom skimps on nothing. This sugar-glazed, oven-ready affair casts an out-of-sorts Susan Sarandon as a middle-aged matriarch squabbling over her offspring with the new model mom (Julia Roberts) that hubby Ed Harris has hooked up with. The first mom gets poorly and laughter turns to tears (or at least weary resignation). Sad but true, mothers die too. Didn't your mom teach you anything?
West End: Odeon Camden Town, Odeon Kensington, Odeon Marble Arch, Odeon Swiss Cottage, Odeon West End, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Chelsea. And local cinemas
TWO GIRLS AND A GUY (15)
Director: James Toback
Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Heather Graham
James Toback's taut menage a trois drama prowls edgily around its lone loft-space location and probes aggressively at the psychological make-up of its three central characters. Heather Graham and Natasha Gregson Warner are the duped girlfriends of Robert Downey Jr's love-rat prima donna, and Two Girls and a Guy gives them plenty of room to move and breathe, turning the resulting yarn into a pungent acting showcase. Toback's picture is essentially filmed theatre, and struggles to sustain itself throughout a feature-length running time. That said, the vibrant writing and moody atmospherics cast a considerable spell.
West End: Virgin Fulham Road, Virgin Haymarket. Local: Warner Village Finchley Road
VERY BAD THINGS (18)
Director: Peter Berg
Starring: Christian Slater, Cameron Diaz
A bunch of stag-weekenders accidentally kill a Las Vegas whore, intentionally murder the security guard who rumbles the crime, then start coming apart at the seams on their arrival home. Peter Berg's debut serves up swaggering, gross-out comedy in a Loaded magazine style, but it's finally a film with nowhere to go save from shrill to shriller to shrillest. More crucially, you're never quite sure whether Berg is satirising his rapacious white males or merely indulging them in their thirtysomething kicks. Virtuoso nastiness, plus some full-throttle acting from Daniel Stern (as the gang's most guilt-ridden member) and Cameron Diaz (a ball-breaking fiancee) lend the mess a certain shameful allure.
West End: Odeon Camden Town, Odeon Swiss Cottage, Plaza, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Chelsea, Virgin Trocadero, Warner Village West End. And local cinemas
After giving gay film R-rating despite no sex or violencefilm
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
- 2 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
- 3 James Foley beheading: Fox news presenter Megyn Kelly annoyed by Ferguson update during broadcast about murdered journalist
- 4 Kajieme Powell: Missouri police release video footage of second man killed by officers
- 5 Paul Scholes: Manchester United need five experienced players who can turn round a desperate situation
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC
The Top Ten: Horrible buildings
JK Rowling writes new Harry Potter story on Pottermore: Introducing 'Singing Sorceress' Celestina Warbuck
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?
Celebrity Big Brother 2014 line-up: Meet the contestants from Lauren Goodger to Kellie Maloney and Audley Harrison
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Crisis? What crisis? A visiting US doctor gives the NHS a rave review
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
Scottish Independence Referendum: Salmond described as 'arrogant, ambitious and dishonest' by Scottish women