New Films

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ALL ABOUT MY MOTHER (15, 100 mins)

Director: Pedro Almodovar

Starring: Marisa Paredes, Penelope Cruz

See The Independent Recommends, right.

West End: Clapham Picture House, Curzon Mayfair, Gate Notting Hill, Odeon Camden Town, Richmond Filmhouse, Ritzy Cinema, Screen on Baker Street, Screen on the Hill, Virgin Fulham Road Repertory: Rio

DARKNESS FALLS (15, 91 mins)

Director: Gerry Lively

Starring: Sherilyn Fenn, Ray Winstone

Apparently hailing from the dark age of late-Eighties British cinema, Darkness Falls is the kind of cod, overstated, underdeveloped homegrown thriller (American stars and stodgy storytelling) we thought they didn't make anymore. They do, it seems. Tim Dutton is the oily husband, Sherilyn Fenn the ice-queen wife, and Ray Winstone the ghost from the past who holds them hostage. Crashing strings and jarring flashbacks plague the tale like epilepsy.

West End: ABC Shaftesbury Avenue

LIFE (15, 109 mins)

Director: Ted Demme

Starring: Eddie Murphy, Martin Lawrence

Life (as in life imprisonment) ambles through 60 years in the incarceration of odd-couple convicts Murphy and Lawrence in a Mississippi prison. It's not all racism, drudgery and buggery, mind you. We also get baseball games, bickering, conjugal visits and escape attempts in a film that weaves between comedy and tragedy without ever quite hitting the right balance. Life earns a reprieve for the strong acting and expert ageing prosthetics, but the film bungles its parole with a script that's going nowhere.

West End: Plaza, Ritzy Cinema, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Trocadero, Warner Village West End And local cinemas

NEVER BEEN KISSED (12, 107 mins)

Director: Raja Gosnell

Starring: Drew Barrymore, David Arquette

Drew Barrymore's first stab at mogul status (producer/star/general boss lady) is a saccharine slip of a romantic comedy, spiriting its starchy twentysomething heroine (Barrymore) back to high school to research an undercover journalistic assignment. Arquette coasts on auto-pilot as her protective brother, while Drew goes big on pensive frowns and beaming grins. It's all over in the blink of an eye.

West End: Odeon Kensington, Odeon Marble Arch, Odeon Swiss Cottage, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Chelsea, Virgin Trocadero, Warner Village West End And local cinemas

SOUTH PARK: BIGGER, LONGER AND UNCUT (15, 95 mins)

Director: Trey Parker

See The Independent Recommends, right.

West End: ABC Panton Street, ABC Tottenham Court Road, Clapham Picture House, Notting Hill Coronet, Odeon Camden Town, Odeon Kensington, Odeon Marble Arch, Odeon Swiss Cottage, Ritzy Cinema, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Fulham Road, Virgin Trocadero, Warner Village West End And local cinemas

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