The latest DVDs and Blu-rays are given the once-over by our writers. Read first before reaching for your credit card.
“This is insanity!” “Or maybe it’s genius!” These quotes sum up Pi pretty succinctly, providing both a synopsis of the plot and a critical evaluation of the film itself. The exchange takes place between Max Cohen, an exceptional mathematical mind and recluse, and his former mentor Sol, debating the merits of a 216-digit number. Spit out of Max’s computer, the number may or may not be the key to unlock the secrets to the universe and existence.
In the interviews that accompany The Look of Love, director Michael Winterbottom speaks of the difficulties he had researching the film. Unlike his other biopic starring Steve Coogan 24 Hour Party People the central figure, Paul Raymond, was dead, hardly any footage of him exists and much of his family were involved in a competing biopic so couldn’t really contribute all that much information. This might explain the absence at the centre of The Look of Love. Coogan never gets under Raymond’s skin and as he is front and centre of the film it gives the whole endeavour a real lack of depth.
IMDB lists Looking For Hortense as a U and a comedy. It is neither. It has humorous moments, but the general mood is despondent, unlifted by an upbeat ending.
Iva (Kristin Scott Thomas) directs a play and then fends off a snog attack from a cute younger man. Pensive, she returns home to her son, Noé and her husband Damien, he becomes our protagonist.
Damien is charged with asking his influential father, Sébastien, to help prevent the deportation of his lover's brother's girlfriend's worthy friend. Dad has the ear of high-up Hortense. Damien's efforts to get his father on board are complicated as he unintentionally gives the impression the mission has already been accomplished.
Satyajit Ray is arguably of one of India’s most influential filmmakers. This tale, released in 1964, of longing and loneliness is widely regarded as one of his finest films. Set in the confines of the late nineteenth century, Ray takes a look back through India’s history to the time the country sought its independence from England.