Boxing Day (2012)
Average Rating: 6.2/10
Reviews Counted: 16
Fresh: 13 | Rotten: 3
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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 1
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 0
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User Ratings: 44
A businessman named Basil and his chauffeur, Nick, drive into the heart of the Rocky mountains in the midst of perilous weather conditions. When the journey becomes potentially fatal, Basil must decide whether he's prepared to sacrifice his own life for the life of another.
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Proves timely and persuasive: as the weather becomes colder, so a thaw develops between Basil and Nick's more attractive everyman.
Tolstoy's acutely felt story yields a prosaic film tragedy that may connect with festival audiences but few else.
The film unfurls through a series of brilliantly staged and intensely uncomfortable interactions between the supercilious Basil and the grating Nick.
It's a nuanced story, cleverly combining claustrophobia and agoraphobia, and the moving climax takes on a sonorous spiritual tone of revelation and redemption.
Huston, as ever, does the devil's work to perfection, but, with no one to like - let alone root for - this soon becomes a very long and tiresome slog indeed.
As small-scale as Boxing Day is, it sustains an unusual atmosphere and an emotional charge of which Tolstoy might have approved - and both performances are memorably etched into it.
Corruption, self-interest and rampant bigotry are so clearly portrayed in this riveting documentary that if it doesn't make you angry, maybe there's something wrong with you.
A commanding performance from Huston and a car sat nav machine called Cynthia make it worth seeing.
Perhaps no movie version could find an equivalent for the original's final lines, but this is another arresting adaptation from Rose.
Huston and Jacobs have a marvellously spluttery chemistry, even as events in the mountains reduce them to a pair of wretched creatures, clinging to one another while the cold night gnaws their bones.
There's a rueful wit in this character mismatch which becomes a sort of love match. Zen Buddyism.
Writer-director Bernard Rose completes his Tolstoy adaptation trilogy with this engaging, painfully topical and sharply written drama, heightened by a terrific pair of performances from Danny Huston and Matthew Jacobs.
Unfortunately this reworking of Master And Man hasn't the resonance of Ivansxtc, but Huston is slyly compelling.
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