Time Code *** Audacious, hi-tech filmmaking
Another audacious, experimental feature from director Mike Figgis, Time Code interweaves four improvised stories shot in real time and projected on to a split- screen simultaneously. The characters' lives criss-cross in time and space, as they enter and leave different locations, interact face- to-face or on the phone, and slowly converge upon the office of indie film production company Red Mullet Inc. Here, a tyrannical director is in the final stages of casting his new movie, his panic exacerbated by sporadic seismic
tremors and various Red Mullet staff trying to cope with their own personal and professional upheavals. Having captured the semi-improvised performances on hand-held digital cameras, Figgis slyly directs our attention by bringing up the sound level in the quadrant where the most salient emotional revelations or confrontations are occurring (Figgis will perform a live mix in Edinburgh during the Film Festival). Jeanne Tripplehorn eavesdrops on her lover, Salma Hayek, an aspiring actress involved in a mercenary affair with the
Continued from page 71
DOCUMENTARY Caesar's Park it
Whimsical portrait of an eccentric community
Director Sarah Price (American Movre) moved into Caesar’s Park, Milwaukee and immediately set about dOCumenting the lives of her neighbours. The resulting portrait of a community is charming en0ugh, but hardly enthralling. Also, one doubts the veraCity of the affectionate study, Since almost all the locals featured are on the peCUliar side of eccentric, including foul-mouthed seventysomething Jeannie, who finds time for the odd innocuous comment between the expletive-filled diatribes. The film works best when uncovering the isolation of the elderly residents, who all bemoan the demise of old- fashioned community spirit, but this fails to make up for the slow pace and Whimsical t0ne. (Jack Mottram)
I Caesar’s Park, Fi/mhouse 3, 77, 79 Aug, 9pm; GFT 2, 23 Aug, 7. 75pm, £7 (£4.50).
Cirkeline - Ost 8: Kaerlighed (Circleen - Mice &
The gentle charms of Danish rodents
This Danish kids’ animation, in easy-on-
the-eye watercolours, charms through its characters a near-sighted Cinderm0use, a pot-bellied hero, a flamenco-dancmg rodent With two husbands, and a farting grandfather mouse. There’s also sOme nice self- referential t0uches (’Why do we always have to sing? Because this is a cartoon?) The film’s screening Will have an English-language voiceover, but how much of its charm Will be lost
76 THE llST FESTIVAL GUIDE 3— l0 Aug 2000
Split-screen digital feature with a 'Iive mix' by director Figgis
through this is hard to tell, the Jazzy Danish sOundtrack includes some cracking character v0ices which contributed a great deal to the film's appeal. Overall: calm, qUietly absorbing and highly-recommended for three—nine-year-olds.
Bl Cirkeline — Ost & Kaerlighed (Circleen — Mice 81 Romance, The Lumiere, 77Aug, 70am, £4.50(£2.50),
Angels Of The Universe (Englar Alheimsins) ****
A young man’s descent into insanity Another wonderful film from Nordic auteur Fridrik Thor Fridriksson (Co/d Fever), this is an examination of a sensitive y0ung man's descent into insanity. The first half of the film is pure Repu/sion, as the protagonist Paul, an artist, slowly cracks under the weight of a broken heart. The second half enters One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest territory With Paul befriending a Beatles obsessive and wannabe fasCist. Fridriksson pulls few punches Visually or emotionally, thus allowmg his film to become a strong indictment of European methods of dealing With mental health problems. (Paul Dale)
3?} Angels Of The Universe, Fi/mhouse
7, 74 Aug, 9.30pm, Fi/mhouse 2, 78 Aug, 5.30pm, [7 (£4.50).
I Love (080) Ht Questioning a documentarist’s ethics
Yang Li-ch0u's shoestring-budget documentary follows Zengh, a young soldier struggling thr0ugh National SerVice. As the film progresses, Zengh feigns schiZOphrenia to av0id c0urt martial, then seems to genumely descend into madness as the pressures of being filmed take their toll. The
company’s emotionally disintegrating co-founder Stellan Skarsgard. Meanwhile, Skarsgard’s damaged ex-partner, Saffron Burrows, leaves her shrink's office and meanders across town to confront him. On a lighter note, Julian Sands comic turn as a peripatetic New Age masseuse is perfectly pitched. lntellectually invigorating, technologically bold and — perhaps most surprising given the technical nature of the project - always emotionally involving. (Nigel Floyd)
I Time Code, Cameo 7, 75 Aug, 8pm, £7 (£4.50).
study of the loneliness experienced by y0ung serVicemen, and their dependence on the toll-free 080 phone lines of the title for companionship, becomes a consideration of documentary ethics, With the troubled Zengh directly accusing the filmmakers of compounding his difficulties. Touching and disturbing by turns, this self-funded film questions the morality of intrusive documentary-making from Within the genre. (lack Mottram)
/ Love (080), Fi/mhouse 3, 76 Aug, 9pm, 20 Aug, 3pm, £7 (£4.50).
My Heart (Jung) **** Bittersweet domestic tale Sixteen-year-old Soomie is forced into an arranged marriage to a spOilt ten- year-old. This threatens a life of serVitude at the hands of an unlovmg spouse and a venomous mother-in-law. After ten years of marital disharmony, Soomie’s husband returns from college With a pregnant girlfriend in tow, which Soomie takes as a cue to leave and forge a life for herself. Set in Korea and beginning in the 1920s, this is a tender, bittersweet study of one woman’s sense of self. Bae Changho’s skilful direction is wholly involvmg, and manages to be as heartwarming as it is harrowmg. (Dawn Kofie)
I My Heart, Fi/mhouse 3, 77 Aug 6pm, 22 Aug 9pm, £7 (£4.50).
Our Song *irtt
Superb urban drama about three teenage girls
Brooklyn teens Lanisha, Maria and Joycelyn diyide their time between practice duties With the Jackie Robinson Steppers Marching Band and time-honOured teenage activ:ties, from shop-lifting to pregnancy scares. Jim McKay's superb film follows the trio as
they learn their school is to close, forcmg the girls to make some serious deCisions about their respective futures. We see family arguments, the tedium of summer JObS and, of course, trouble With boys. Drawmg amaZing, super-realist performances from the y0ung actors, McKay crafts a character- driven, loosely structured piece that meanders along nicely, sWitching from improwsed giggly banter to the pouting melodrama of adolescence. (Jack Mottram)
I Our Song, Fi/mhouse 7, 76 Aug, 7pm, Cameo 7, 23 Aug, 5.30pm, £7 (£4.50).
The Price Of Milk “in Surreal fairy tale romance
A cow farmer and his fiance live an idyllic life in rural New Zealand. However, she wants kids and he doesn’t. So they row and call their marriage off and he shacks up With somebody else. Seen it all before? Well, Harry Sinclair’s follow-up to his 1997 Edinburgh hit, ’Topless Women Talk About Their Lives’, is a real oddity which plays the familiar relationship drama as surreal fairy tale (With classical soundtrack). There’s a dog in a box, a thieVing old Maori woman and a flying house. At first it seems Just too daft, then it makes you laugh, and finally it charms. (Miles Fielder)
I The Price Of Milk, Cameo 7, 74 Aug, 5. 75pm; Cameo 2, 76 Aug, 7pm, £7 (£4.50).
Virgin Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors (Oh! Soo-Jung) **
Slow-paced twentysomething drama
Hong Sangsoo‘s sweet film investigates the burgeoning relationship between three twentysomethings, continually repeating key scenes from different pOints of View as the trio slowly become closer. Much is made of chance encounters and misunderstandings as Sangsoo creates comic Vignettes draWing on the painful, awkward shyness of the protagonists, the occasional slapstick of boozmg sessions and some fantastically pretentious pseudo chatter from the senSitive gang. In the end, this is worth a look, but the slow pace can become trying, and the gentle smirking humour has one crying out for at least one good belly laugh. (Jack Mottram)
l Virgin Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors (Oh! Soc-lung), Fi/mhouse 3, 76 Aug, 6pm, Fi/mhouse 2, 27 Aug, 8pm, £7 (£4.50).
Une Journée d’Andréi Arsenevitch (One Day In The Life Of Andrei Arsenevitch) ****
Intimate portrait of a great Russian filmmaker
A respectful dowment of Andrei Tarkovsky’s final moments back in 1986, as he lay dying of cancer, and also an astutely observed critique of