Film Picks

Two lowly soldiers (played by Dean-Charles Chapman and George MacKay, above) are charged with delivering a message from one part of the battleground in France to another.
Two lowly soldiers (played by Dean-Charles Chapman and George MacKay, above) are charged with delivering a message from one part of the battleground in France to another. PHOTOS: GOLDEN VILLAGE, SHAW ORGANISATION, UIP
Actress Renee Zellweger (above, centre) won the Best Actress - Drama at the Golden Globes for playing screen legend Judy Garland in this biopic.
Actress Renee Zellweger (above, centre) won the Best Actress - Drama at the Golden Globes for playing screen legend Judy Garland in this biopic. PHOTOS: GOLDEN VILLAGE, SHAW ORGANISATION, UIP
Black comedy Parasite (above) became the first South Korean film to win a Golden Globe when it picked up the Best Foreign Language film award
Black comedy Parasite (above) became the first South Korean film to win a Golden Globe when it picked up the Best Foreign Language film awardPHOTOS: GOLDEN VILLAGE, SHAW ORGANISATION, UIP

1917 (PG13)

119 minutes/5 stars

This war epic not only tackles a subject few film-makers want to touch, it does so by filling the viewer's senses also - one leaves the cinema feeling the story in the gut.

Edited as a single continuous shot, this World War I survival story is filled with beauty and terror. Two lowly soldiers (played by Dean-Charles Chapman and George MacKay) are charged with delivering a message from one part of the battleground in France to another. Their failure could have catastrophic consequences.

Neither director Sam Mendes nor cinematographer Roger Deakins invented the single-take movie, but no one has embraced the technique with such boldness, nor produced results as exhilarating.

Mendes picked up Best Director at the Golden Globes this week, with the film winning the Best Motion Picture - Drama prize.


JUDY (PG13)

118 minutes/4 stars

Actress Renee Zellweger won the Best Actress - Drama at the Golden Globes for playing screen legend Judy Garland in this biopic. Zellweger’s electrifying intensity is obvious from the first scene to the last.

Her Judy, who grows from the teen star who found Hollywood immortality as Dorothy in The Wizard Of Oz (1939) to being washed up in the late 1960s, plays tiny venues for a pittance. She is also a pill-popper with four marriages behind her and two children in tow as she moves from hotel to hotel.

The screenplay, adapted from the successful stage musical End Of The Rainbow, paints Garland as a tragic figure who fills the emptiness inside with the adoration of her audiences. Given another shot at redemption as the headliner of a cabaret in London, will the famously unreliable performer squander this last chance?



Awkwafina (real name Nora Lum, above) picked up the Best Actress - Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical award for playing the lead in the drama The Farewell.

PARASITE (M18) AND THE FAREWELL (PG)

This week saw these two films get rewarded at the Golden Globes.

Black comedy Parasite became the first South Korean film to win a Golden Globe when it picked up the Best Foreign Language film award, while Awkwafina (real name Nora Lum) picked up the Best Actress - Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical award for playing the lead in the drama The Farewell.

Parasite looks at what happens when the Kims, a family of con artists, manipulate their way into the home of the wealthy Parks. In The Farewell, Chinese-American Billi (Awkwafina) is torn between the Asian desire for harmony and her Western urge to be blunt when her family decides to hide a terminal diagnosis from her beloved grandmother who lives in China.

WHERE: The Projector, Level 5 Golden Mile Tower, 6001 Beach Road MRT: Nicoll Highway WHEN: Now showing, various times ADMISSION: $13.50 INFO: theprojector.sg

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 10, 2020, with the headline 'Film Picks'. Print Edition | Subscribe