Surprise treat in opening of Barney’s Version here last week

Last week I wrote that Rabbit Hole was opening at the Paramount Theatre. Unfortunately, because I write this column prior to bookings being finalized, that changed. However, it might have changed for the better.

Anthony Hopkins lets evil possess him again in The Rite.

Last week I wrote that Rabbit Hole was opening at the Paramount Theatre. Unfortunately, because I write this column prior to bookings being finalized, that changed. However, it might have changed for the better.

In its stead, Barney’s Version opened, which is the film version of Modecai Richler’s 1997 novel of the same name. It is the story of Barney Panofsky spanning 30 years of his life including his three marriages.

His colourful life is accentuated by Barney starting to pursue his third wife during the wedding to his second. Paul Giammati, who has already won a Golden Globe for his portrayal of Barney, is the perfect choice to play the eccentric title character, but the supporting cast of Rosamund Pike, Dustin Hoffman, Bruce Greenwood and Minnie Driver adds to its appeal.

Plus there are smaller roles played by recognizable faces including character actor Maury Chaykin, who died after the movie completed filming.

Opening at the Paramount Theatre on Friday is Lovers in a Dangerous Time, whose title is inspired by the Bruce Cockburn song. Filmed and set in Creston, B.C., it is the story of two former childhood friends who set out to relive their childhood after reuniting at their 10-year high school reunion.

Todd (the boy who stayed) and Allison (the girl who left) are struggling with the harsh realities of adulthood and a return to their youth seems like the perfect escape.

Although it is unlikely to receive much international attention, Lovers in a Dangerous Time has already received acclaim on either side of Creston, winning the Best Canadian Film award at the Okanagan International Film Festival and the Audience Award at the Calgary International Film Festival.

Jason Statham plays the Charles Bronson character in the remake of The Mechanic, the story of an elite assassin whose professional perfection and total detachment is tested when his mentor is killed and the son of the deceased asks to be trained in the trade so he can exact revenge.

Even in his weakest films, Statham owns the screen and is one of the best action stars in the movies today.

And if you are pining for Anthony Hopkins taking on another Hannibal Lecter-type role, you may want to check out The Rite. It is the story of a disillusioned young American priest (Colin O’Donoghue) who travels to the Vatican where he learns to carry out exorcisms and eventually finds his faith renewed through encounters with demonic forces.

I think the idea of Hannibal Lecter meets The Exorcist is already creepy enough, even without the tagline: “Inspired by true events.” Just remember that it is based upon a fictional story, however, the author did research by going to the Vatican to participate in a seminar on exorcism.

Rick Davis is the manager of the Capitol Theatre in West Kelowna.


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