Directed by Fernando Meirelles. Starring Ralph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz, Danny Huston, Bill Nighy 15 cert

Meirelles follows up City of God with this powerful adaptation of John Le Carré's novel focusing on skulduggery in Africa by the pharmaceutical industry. The performances are excellent - Weisz, playing diplomat Fiennes's activist wife, deserved that Oscar - the cinematography is gorgeous and the music is hypnotic. Indeed, the film is technically so impressive that one ends up forgiving it its confused final act. Donald Clarke


Directed by Shane Black. Staring Robert Downey Jr, Val Kilmer, Michelle Monaghan, Corbin Bernsen 15 cert

Screenwriter Black turns director with an energetic screwball comedy-thriller, played with gusto by Downey as a thief-turned-actor and Kilmer as a gay detective. The narrative, a convoluted neo-noir, exists primarily to string together a succession of funny in-jokes and movie references. Michael Dwyer


Directed by Gillies MacKinnon. Starring Andie McDowell, Olivia Williams, Iain Glen, Stephen Rea, Brenda Fricker, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Bronagh Gallagher, Ruby Wax 12 cert

The film of Maeve Binchy's novel follows the lives of two women on opposite sides of the Atlantic as they swap houses and struggle to cope with traumatic events. The result is a sketchy, thoroughly conventional melodrama that squanders all the talent on both sides of the camera. Michael Dwyer


Directed by Terry Gilliam. Starring Matt Damon, Heath Ledger, Jonathan Pryce, Monica Bellucci 12 cert

Gilliam's messy re-imagining of the Grimms' story - here, the storytellers are confidence tricksters adrift in a Gothic nightmare - is not a complete disaster, but, with its uncomfortable mixture of tones, it does end up looking like Terry's worst film to date. Still, considering the fights the notoriously indiscrete director had with Miramax, the DVD commentary should be a classic. Donald Clarke