Some films

The End (2008)

Nicola Collins' over-long portrait of East End hard men, specifically her Dad and his mates, doesn't manage to shed any real light on its subject. At times it comes across as a constant stream of cliche- we are informed that gangsters like violence, weapons and their families but hate prison, paedos and people that tell on them.

The only genuinely surprising moment comes at around the hour mark when the documentary pulls a massive switcheroo and briefly morphs into a piece of evangelical Christian propaganda. Cue stirring, inspirational music, shots of ducks on a pond and images of hard guys looking wistful while describing how Jesus wants them for a sunbeam.

The Burial (2008)

A mother's last wish is that her body be taken from France to the river in England where her husband died, and so her three estranged sons set off together in a hearse with the coffin loaded in the back.

Handled less skilfully the film could have been either an unimaginative madcap farce or a slushy emotional cheese fest. However, for the most part Boucher and Mills' direction manages to tread a fine line between comedy and tragedy, providing humour without stupidity and emotion without overt manipulation.

Jasmine Women (2004)

Hou Yong's visually striking film tells the generation-spanning story of three women in the same family who seem destined to keep making the same mistakes. Zhang Ziyi, best known for her work on Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, House Of Flying Daggers and Memoirs of a Geisha, is impressive as the young female protagonist of three separate stories set in China in the 1930s, 50s and 80s. Early scenes set in pre-war Shanghai are particularly worthy of mention for their stunning cinematography.

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