A Week In Film #454: RWD & Dedication

Mad Max: Fury Road
George Miller’s reboot of his post-apocalyptic road warrior mythology admirably throws aside his principal character in favour of Charlize Theron’s Imperator Furiosa, turning Tom Hardy into well-photographed eye-candy – bravo. Great effects and stunts and visualisation and design and everything, really – absolutely relentless.

The Holcroft Covenant
Picking up on my irregular mission to work through Michael Caine’s entire oeuvre, I finally finished this piece of crap after months of trying. Based on a Robert Ludlum novel about the descendants of senior Nazis being given the task of disbursing billions of dollars-worth of money stashed away for the benefit of the victims of the Holocaust, it’s directed by John Frankenheimer, who should be very ashamed. By comparison Caine gets a free pass, seeing as he was drafted in at the eleventh hour to replace James Can, who was originally going to be the leading man. Probably the only truly enjoyable moments come from Swiss actor Mario Adorf (seen by British audiences in Smiley’s People) as a particularly sweaty conductor.

The Marseille Contract
More Caine – here as a professional hitman hired by a DEA agent (Anthony Quinn) to assassinate a French drugs trafficker (James Mason) in, yes, Marseilles. Directed in a very old fashioned style by Robert Parrish (perhaps best known for the original, Tijuana-scored Casino Royale), thanks to the performances of solid actors like Quinn and Mason, there are at least movements of interest, even if the plot and script are hardly setting the world on fire with their originality.

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