Colonel Blimp’s Triumphant Return
LW‘M “9 "
The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (u) (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, UK, 1943) Roger Livesey, Deborah Kerr, Anton Walbrook 163 mins.
Being outwitted through ‘cheating’ in a Home Guard exercise in 1942 forces General Clive Wynne-Candy (‘Blimp’ of the title, played by Roger Livesey) to reflect on his life and military career. He looks back on a diplomatic conflict In 1902 Berlin, where he befriended a German officer (Anton Walbrook), and metthe only woman he ever loved (Deborah Kerr) -two relationships which are to bear repercussions through the years. Considering how the flow of history has changed the way wars are waged, he comes to the conclusion that his gentlemanly, and very English, notions of ‘fair play’ have become out-moded.
Impossible really in such a short
Eastwood movies and knows his limitations.
0 Daniel Takes a Train (15) (Pal Sandor, Hungary, 1983) Peter Rudolph 92 mins. In the turmoil of the 1956 uprising, two young men attempt to ﬂee the chaos of Budapest for the safety of the Austrian border. Part of the Hungarian Arts in Glasgow season, this is a delicate study of friendship in times ofstress. and a gripping narrative to boot. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. Glasgow: OFF.
0 Desperately Seeking Susan ( 15) (Susan Seidelman, US, 1985) Rosanna Arquette, Madonna. 103 mins. Bored suburban housewife Roberta, looking for escape from her humdrum existence through the personal columns, becomes fascinated with a series of ads ‘desperately seeking Susan’ and plucks up the courage to spy on the next rendezvous. By a sequence of coincidences, she unwittingly swaps identity with Susan, and her life is changed forever.. Much more than just ‘the Madonna movie‘, this is a charming 80‘s style rendition of 30’s crazy comedy. Quirky observation conspires with an offbeat humour to create an unexpected delight.
synopsis to give much of an idea of the scope and grandeur of this extraordinary British film, now re- released in a stunning restored Technicolour print, and shown in its complete version for the first time in over 40 years. A key work in the canon of its writer-director team (you may have marvelled at A Matter of Life And Death on TV recentlv). it is an ecstatic, uplifting celebration, and, paradoxically, critique of the essence of Britishness - in things cultural, emotional and cinematic.
A magnificent addition to British Film year, it brim with the fantastic imagination so often lacking in our native cinema, but so often undervalued when it does surface. This is one of the great British films. (Trevor Johnston).
Glasgow; ABC, Clarkston
Rd; Odeon; Salon. Lothian; Bathgate, from 1 1th. Strathclyde; Greenock, ABC; Hamilton, Odeon; Irvine, Filmcentre, from 11th; Kilmarnock, ABC; Saltcoats, La Scala.
0 Diary For My Children (PG) (Marta Meszaros, Hungary, 1982) Zsuzsa Czinkocz 107 mins. Budapest 1946, a young girl, Juli, whose parents are dead, comes to live with a would-be foster mother, a member of the Stalinist elite. Based on the director‘s own experiences, the film is a fascinating portrayal of adolescence told through an effortless kaleidoscope of fact and fantasy. Shot in black and white, the central narrative is intercut with documentary footage and state propaganda ofthe time, putting the personal inevitability into the context of the political. One of the highlights of the Hungarian cinema season. Glasgow: GFI‘.
o The Element of Crime (15) (Lars Von Trier, Denmark. 1984) Michael Elphick, Esmond Knight. 104 mins. Detective Fisher leaves an investigation into a number of child murders in Europe and goes to Cairo. An Egyptian therapist
hypnotises him to help him understand what really happened. and he undergoes a perilous journey through” the underworld of his own imagination to discover the shocking truth of his own identity. Or something like that. A visually striking debut by a young Danish director (filmed in English, by the way), this is a particularly zesty homage to his cinema heroes. The exaggerated style of the piece has a heavily Wellesian feel, and the number of horses as well as the volume of water suggest more than a passing affection for Tarkovsky. And a sex scene on the bonnet of a VW Beetle is not something you get every day. It really has to be seen. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
O Fletch (PG) (Michael Ritchie. US, 1985) Chevy Chase. Dana Wheeler-Nicholson. Tim Matheson. 98 mins. Chase finds a suitable character for his comic style as a madcap, wise-cracking reporter forever sporting outlandish disguises as he falls into love, into trouble and onto the front pages.
The film has its odd moment of hilarity. depending on one‘s appreciation of Chase, but is generally undistinguished.
Edinburgh; ABC Glasgow; ABC, Sauchiehall St.
0 Friday the 13th, Part V — A New Beginning (18) (Danny Steinman. 1985, US)
Melanie Kinnaman. John Shepherd. Shavar Ross. 91 mins.
Resident maniac Jason Voorhees may be dead and gone but there are
plenty candidates waiting to don his mask and resume the indiscriminate butchery of nubile teenagers. The killings are monotonoust unvarying, the acting generally poor and the direction perfunctory in this wholly unwarranted sequel. The plot leaves a wide opening for the series to be continued but a decent burial is long overdue. Glasgow: Grosvenor. from 1 1th. Lothian; Bathgate.
o The Funhouse(18)(Tobc Hooper,US. 1981 )Cooper Huckabee, Miles Chapin, Sylvia Miles. 96 mins. Four stouthearted teenagers prepare to spend a night in a spooky carnival. not expecting the violence and horrors that prevent slumber from descending. Imaginative visuals enhance this uneven shocker. Glasgow; Grosvenor.
o Gremlins ( 15)(Joe
Dante,US, 1985)Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates. Judge Reinhold. 106 mins. Cute little mogwais become malevolent monsters if not properly cared for and wreak havoc in an idealised smalltown America. A tongue-in-cheek Yuletide romp filled with in-jokes. Strathclyde; Ayr, Odeon.
o lnsignificance (15) (Nicolas Roeg, 1985, UK) Theresa Russell, Tony Curtis, Gary Busey, Michael Emil. 108 mins. New York, 1954. A quartet of mid-century icons congregate in a hotel one night, the fictionalised intertwining oftheir lives allowing for speculation on the private concerns of some very public
Keeping a Straight Face in Outer Space
t: ‘” fS so“
Life Force (18) (Tobe Hooper, UK,‘ 1985) Steve Railsback, Peter Firth, Frank Finlay. 101 mins. .
One American wag has already dubbed this space-age opus, Plan 10 from Outer Space and I can think of no better description. Within seconds we are pitched into an unholy alliance of Duatermass, Gerry Anderson and Hammer horror at its most florid.
The film's cheeky opportunism is immediately established; set in 1986 it uses the imminent arrival of Halley’s Comet to spin an endearineg daffy yarn about vampires from outer space drawing the very lifetorce from our humbleplanet. Suave scientist Finlay,
‘ it}. ') If .«r’
as,“ “a...” ’-
astronaut Hailsback are our intrepid heroes prepared to fight the good fight and save the world from catastrophe.
Life Force is the type of production one hoped they didn't make anymore and has to be seen to be disbelieved. Tackiness is in the air and ropey script combines familiar old chestnuts with daft new acquaintances eg ‘Don’t worry, a naked girl isn’t going to get out of this complex' and ‘We've got to assume the worst’. Full credit to the cast for maintaining a straight face and the special effects are often out of the ordinary but this is unashamed codswallop with cuff potential. (Allan Hunter)
butch 8A8 colonel Firth and telepathic
The List 4—17 October 23