Video News

The General (15)

Available to rent now

JOHN BOORMAN'S biopic is a romanticised version of the true-life story of Martin Cahill, the Dublin criminal who ran rings round the police and charmed Ireland with his misadventures in the Eighties and early Nineties. As Boorman tells it, Cahill was a product of the post-war housing estates, channelling his charisma and intelligence into staying one step ahead of the society he felt had abandoned him. This amounts largely to petty theft and burglary, until the prospect of a long jail sentence makes Cahill face up to securing the future of his large family. So he pulls off a multi-million-pound heist. Engineering an ingenious escape from imprisonment, Cahill lets his ambition get the better of him and suddenly he finds himself in a vice comprising the IRA and the police inspector on his case (an excellent Jon Voight).

The key to Boorman's success is the degree to which he plays up Cahill's myth. He doesn't exactly debunk him; Cahill's uproarious courtroom appearances and his preference for hanging out at the police station whenever he needs an alibi are too much fun. Rather, the washed-out monochrome of the film reflects the man's murky, bolder-than-life appeal. With the help of Brendan Gleeson's performance, menacing and gleeful by turn, it doesn't take us long to realise that Cahill is as ruthless as he is cheeky. One minute, he's sporting a daft disguise in court, the next, Boorman is at pains to make clear, he's nailing a suspected informer to a snooker table. An enjoyable, vigorous update of the Robin Hood fable, with the blarney thankfully kept under control.

The Wedding Singer (12)

Available to rent now

JUST WHEN Robbie Hart (Adam Sandler), wannabe rock star, has come to terms with his eponymous lot, his flaky bride stands him up at the altar. Not even the weekly opportunity of belting out (this being 1985) the finest that Culture Club and Kajagoogoo have to offer brings much consolation. It's up to Julia (Drew Barrymore), a waitress, to catch Robbie's eye and realise that maybe her yuppy trash beau isn't quite the ideal husband-to-be that she thinks he is.

Given that the Eighties tend to be portrayed as the decade ethics forgot, Frank Coraci's amiable comedy is at the very least remarkable for making it look so cosy. The likeable performances drive a standard boy-meets- girl plot, but it's the shameless indulgence of the era's music (Huey Lewis, Hall and Oates, The Cars) and its fashions (bandannas, white leather gloves) that stick in your mind. Good singalong fun.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Mark, Katie and Sanjay in The Apprentice boardroom
TV
Arts and Entertainment

Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites

Arts and Entertainment
Frances O'Connor and James Nesbitt in 'The Missing'

TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations

Arts and Entertainment
Joey Essex will be hitting the slopes for series two of The Jump

TV

Who is taking the plunge?
Arts and Entertainment
Katy Perry as an Ancient Egyptian princess in her latest music video for 'Dark Horse'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Dame Judi Dench, as M in Skyfall

film
Arts and Entertainment
Morrissey, 1988

TV
Arts and Entertainment
William Pooley from Suffolk is flying out to Free Town, Sierra Leone, to continue working in health centres to fight Ebola after surviving the disease himself

music
Arts and Entertainment
The Newsroom creator Aaron Sorkin

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Matt Berry (centre), the star of Channel 4 sitcom 'Toast of London'

TVA disappointingly dull denouement
Arts and Entertainment
Tales from the cryptanalyst: Benedict Cumberbatch in 'The Imitation Game'

film
Arts and Entertainment
Pixie Lott has been voted off Strictly Come Dancing 2014

Strictly
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.

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

    Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

    The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
    Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

    Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

    The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
    La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

    Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

    The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
    Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

    Homeless Veterans campaign

    Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
    Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

    Meet Racton Man

    Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
    Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

    Garden Bridge

    St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

    An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
    Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

    Joint Enterprise

    The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
    Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

    Freud and Eros

    Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum
    France's Front National and the fear of a ‘gay lobby’ around Marine Le Pen

    Front National fear of ‘gay lobby’

    Marine Le Pen appoints Sébastien Chenu as cultural adviser
    'Enhanced interrogation techniques?' When language is distorted to hide state crimes

    Robert Fisk on the CIA 'torture report'

    Once again language is distorted in order to hide US state wrongdoing
    Radio 1’s new chart host must placate the Swifties and Azaleans

    Radio 1 to mediate between the Swifties and Azaleans

    New chart host Clara Amfo must placate pop's fan armies
    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'It's life, and not the Forces, that gets you'

    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'It's life, and not the Forces, that gets you'

    The head of Veterans Aid on how his charity is changing perceptions of ex-servicemen and women in need
    Torture: It didn't work then, it doesn't work now

    Torture: It didn't work then, it doesn't work now

    Its use is always wrong and, despite CIA justifications post 9/11, the information obtained from it is invariably tainted, argues Patrick Cockburn