New Films: Reviews

CENTRAL STATION (15)

Director: Walter Salles

Starring: Fernanda Montenegro, Vinicius de Oliveira

Rio's teeming rail terminus serves as the effective launchpad for Walter Salles's Oscar- nominated Brazilian fable. A road-movie of sorts, Central Station trails Fernanda Montenegro's retired schoolmarm and her abandoned nine- year-old charge (played by Vinicius de Oliveira) on a hunt through the badlands of Sertao for the boy's missing father.

The trip takes in all facets of Brazil's disparate, displaced and poverty- stricken culture, yet Salles steadfastly refuses to make any heavy- handed political point here. Instead, his social critique remains implicit, low-down in the mix. The fine, unshowy acting is set off nicely by Walter Carvalho's haunting visuals, as Central Station blooms by degrees into a picture that is both intimate and universal. West End: Barbican Screen, Clapham Picture House, Curzon Mayfair, Notting Hill Coronet, Renoir, Ritzy Cinema, Screen on the Hill, Virgin Chelsea Local: Croydon Clocktower

PATCH ADAMS (12)

Director: Tom Shadyac

Starring: Robin Williams, Monica Potter

Through the hallowed halls of medical college goes Hunter "Patch" Adams (Robin Williams); a winsome shock-doc who has the patients in stitches while giving a collective hernia to the stuffy establishment. Patch, you see, subscribes to the theory that laughter is the best medicine of all. Idling on your deathbed? Well, here's Patch to stick an enema bulb on his snout and send you off with a smile. Still not happy? No problemo: Patch has a whole heap more comedy tricks up the sleeves of his regulation white coat. Still that's Patch Adams: Awakenings without the angst, Dead Poets Society without the heart. It's like the ultimate distillation of the ultimate Robin Williams movie: the life sucked out and replaced by syrup. West End: ABC Tottenham Court Road, Empire Leicester Square, Odeon Camden Town, Odeon Kensington, Odeon Marble Arch, Odeon Swiss Cottage, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Fulham Road, Virgin Trocadero. And local cinemas

PLEASANTVILLE (12)

Director: Gary Ross

Starring: Tobey Maguire, Reese Witherspoon

See The Independent Recommends, right.

West End: Barbican Screen, Odeon Camden Town, Odeon Kensington, Odeon Marble Arch, Odeon Swiss Cottage, Plaza, Ritzy Cinema, UCI Whiteleys, Virgin Chelsea, Virgin Haymarket, Warner Village West End. And local cinemas

SCHIZOPOLIS (18)

Director: Steven Soderbergh

Starring: Steven Soderbergh

Between Soderbergh's The Underneath (a box-office bomb) and last year's Out of Sight (a hit) came Schizopolis: a stop-gap experiment, a beaten retreat into art-house abstraction and evidence, perhaps, of a director in crisis.

Pieced together on a thrift-shop budget, Schizopolis is a bit of cinematic crazy-paving. Suburban manners, corporate paranoia, dental hygiene and the rituals of adultery are all deconstructed in energetic, scattergun fashion, though it's finally a shade too film-school wacky to warm to. While Schizopolis is undeniably the strangest film in the "American Independence" season that it's headlining, some of the other offerings (Clockwatchers, or Spike Lee's Four Little Girls) are more rounded and satisfying. Eye of God, Niagara Niagara and Sticky Fingers of Time are also showing. West End: Curzon Soho

Arts and Entertainment
War veteran and father of Peter and Laust Thoger Jensen played by Lars Mikkelson

TVBBC hopes latest Danish import will spell success

Arts and Entertainment
Carey Mulligan in Far From The Madding Crowd
FilmCarey Mulligan’s Bathsheba would fit in better in The Hunger Games
Arts and Entertainment
Pandas-on-heat: Mary Ramsden's contribution is intended to evoke the compound the beasts smear around their habitat
Iart'm Here But You've Gone exhibition has invited artists to produce perfumes
Arts and Entertainment
U2's Songs of Innocence album sleeve

tvU2’s latest record has been accused of promoting sex between men

Arts and Entertainment
Alison Steadman in Inside No.9
tvReview: Alison Steadman stars in Inside No.9's brilliant series finale Spoiler alert
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
    Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

    The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

    A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
    'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

    Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

    Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

    The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
    Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

    Vince Cable exclusive interview

    Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
    Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

    Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

    Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
    Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

    Everyone is talking about The Trews

    Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
    Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

    It's time for my close-up

    Meet the man who films great whites for a living
    Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

    Homeless people keep mobile phones

    A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
    'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

    'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

    British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
    Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

    Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

    Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
    14 best kids' hoodies

    14 best kids' hoodies

    Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

    The acceptable face of the Emirates

    Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk