Monday, September 21, 2020
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MOVIE: Radioactive movie lacks any real spark

THE incredible true story of Marie Curie. That’s how this one is billed and it’s a pity, because the story is genuinely remarkable, but the film sadly isn’t. 

Marie Curie of course discovered radium, and won the Nobel Prize for doing so. Nice job. Not quite as talented, but someone nonetheless at the top of his game is Jack Thorne, screenwriter here and also responsible for the impressive ‘Aeronauts’ and ‘His Dark Materials’. 

Add into the mix the more than capable Rosamund Pike in the lead role and we should be in safe hands. 

But something went badly wrong, and we suspect someone who should have known better got their red pen out to “improve” what was surely a decent script. 

The result is a bit of a mess, paint-by-numbers would be generous. This happens, then that happens, then this happens. Totally lacking in drama, with poor dialogue to boot. We award ‘Radioactive’ a review score of two burnt out stars. 

Some recent releases are more worthy of a watch this week. ‘The Hunt' is like an adult ‘Hunger Games’ where randomers are hunted down in the wilderness by global elites. 

It doesn’t take itself too seriously, is harmless fun and comes with a satisfying 90-minute runtime. Betty Gilpin and Hillary Swank star.  

‘Calm with Horses’ is a kind of countryside ‘Cardboard Gangsters’, or ‘Love Hate’ meets ‘The Hardy Bucks’. It’s not funny, but then again neither was ‘Hardy Bucks’, but it does have the grit and grime of the other films mentioned. 

It stars Cosmo Jarvis, Niamh Algar and Barry Keoghan and is noteworthy for Jarvis’ performance in particular. Irish movie makers and funders seem to be obsessed with gangs and drug dealers, but are there any more stories left to tell?

Finally, ‘Misbehaviour’ stars Keira Knightley and Jessie Buckley in a look back at the 1970 Miss World competition where the newly formed Women’s Liberation Movement rushed the stage and the first black winner was crowned. 

If you like tut-tutting in disappointment at the TV shows your parents used to blissfully enjoy, you’ll get a special kick out of this one. 

Paul O’Rourke

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