Goodbye, ‘Downton Abbey’, Hello, Beating the Crap Out of People


by Niall McArdle

New releases this week include Emma Stone conducting seances, Nick Cave pondering his life, Liam Neeson beating up people, and Downton Abbey‘s Cousin Matthew as a very bad houseguest.

Magic in the Moonlight looks like another slice of romantic whimsy from Woody Allen, with a cast that includes Colin Firth and Emma Stone, both looking lovely in period clothes, in a comedy set in the South of France. Allen has explored the realms of magic and the paranormal before (Alice, A Midsummer Night’s Sex Comedy), and the tone here looks similar to his charming Midnight in Paris. At this point, Allen seems content to make souffles: light, insubstantial comedies. Then again, he still knows how to write a good one-liner, and Stone is on fire right now, so this probably worth a look-see.

In 20,000 Days on Earth singer-songwriter-novelist-actor-director Nick Cave ponders his life, memory, creativity and the forces of the imagination. What does it mean to live? And what does it mean to create Art? In other hands, this might be drivel, but Nick Cave is an artist who can’t be ignored. This may have a limited appeal, but expect it to gain a following among hipster arty types and indie music snobs.

A Walk Among the Tombstones is a terrible title for what looks to be a pretty bad and by-the-numbers thriller, with Liam Neeson cracking heads and growling a lot. Early reviews have noted that the action thriller is more intelligent than Taken (which wouldn’t be hard), with Neeson doing a bit more actual, you know, acting this time.

What would Lord Grantham think of this? In The Guest Dan Stevens throws off the Downton Abbey demeanour and gets all broody and ablicious in a dark role in what look like silly, cheesy fun. Reviews of the thriller have been very good, and it should be noted that it’s made by the same people who made the guilty pleasure, You’re Next (which I thought was great). It’s probably worth seeing, if only to reward Stevens for making it through this awkward moment on breakfast TV this week.

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6 thoughts on “Goodbye, ‘Downton Abbey’, Hello, Beating the Crap Out of People

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