carefully chosen and beautifully reproduced stills as evidence ofa visual coherence expressing this thematic unity.
There is. ofcourse. a tendency to dismiss this as a typically Gallic display ofintellectual gymnastics. Until. that is. critic interviews director on each individual film. Boorman proves himselfevery bit as complex and erudite as Ciment says he is, discussing his work in an assured and dispassionate manner which is astonishingly allusive without descending into pseuderie. At the end of the book one senses a justified revelation of his singular and not inconsiderable talent.
Ifyou have £25 to spend on a book about John Boorman then make certain it‘s this one. Ifyou don‘t. then start saving. for your efforts will be rewarded. (Trevor Johnston )
O Palntlng WalerTeresa Waugh (Penguin £2.95) This tale revolves around home-grown vegetables and a deep-freeze. Alice, who enjoys darning. decorating and babies. marries an avid gardener. has three children and dies ofgalloping cancer. In her last hours she thinks she may be dying of boredom.
The supporting cast is likewise atrophying from tedium. each wondering how the others can bear the monotony of their existence. whilst content with their own.
Written with unrelenting. quiet sarcasm Painting Water deals with the triviality oflife. Unfortunately. to make her point. Ms Waugh bores the reader. as well as Alice. to death. Home-made chutney. loose-covers and freezer-food jostle for space between reﬂections on ennui. Her conversational style further irritates with its repetition and abruptness. giving the narrative a trite banality.
Looking particularly at women: their expectations, frustrations and
fulﬁlments. Ms Waugh raises a question mark over the validity of anything we ever do. The message is that everything is just a time-filler. Ms Waugh‘s theory ofkilling time may well have killed her heroine; it also leaves you asking what point
there is in living at all. (Rosemary
c :23 eth Taylor
0 Girls on Film Julie Birchill (Virgin £5.99)
Girls on Film is a swift analysis of the types of female star the movie barons
manufactured and the effect it had
on actresses when the role ended and
life began. Tracing cinema history from silent films to the destiny of Dynasty. a sequence of engineered female types emerge from Vamp ('compelled by sex and soul~ — Garbo. Harlow. Dietrich and Mac
West) to Tramp to Sex Doll (who underwent ‘celluloid lobotomies‘ — Monroe. Mansfield. Gabor and Jane
Russell). The types have emerged mostly for public ﬂattery (and
: therefore studio bucks) and it is a recurring theme that those who
showed too much spirit did not
survive to get work. Garbo with the ‘vital virus’ she carried with her from Sweden was an exception and sharp
observations are made about the nature of the star and the function she was required to fulfil on screen:
Garbo died again and again on film. proving her own immortality and she
lives: Monroe was never allowed to
die on screen. proving little girls live
for ever. and she is dead.
In judging their real lives. starlets are skewered on the rapier of Burchill’s pen. sparing neither suicides. divorces or peroxide (‘all the best blondes have been brunettes‘). She combines her clipped style and cutting wit with a
razor-edged dissection going straight
to where it hurts. cutting through silicon breasts and surgical facelifts without a wince. Few emerge unscathed — ‘Elizabeth 'I'aylor
contemplates taking a husband — but whose‘.". Woody Allen ‘re-invented Mariel Hemingway as a respectable
name worth dropping.‘ The soft-vowelled and hard-centred Harlow. Garbo and Bardot emerge best. lfthe rest undress. Birchill is the first to know. Towards the end
the derision is partly explained when ? she admits she has neither empathy with the art of film nor respect for the
stupidity of actors who wished to spend their time speaking someone
else‘s lines — ‘ciphers whose empty souls were fed with heroic personas' ‘ by the studios. (Sally Kinnes)
I: guitarist sings through a gas mask. In
, Brockwood Park 1984 8pm. Further
Centre. 350 Sauchiehall Street. 7.30pm. £2/£l. A reading by the Scottish poet and writer whose moving collection of l poems Elegies carried off the ' Whitbread prize this year.
0 The Scots Language Room 4. it)
, Buccleuch Place. 2pm. Six weeks. £7.5l)/'£4. (‘ontact University of Edinburgh Extra-Mural Studies. ll
i Buccleuch Place. (167 101 l.(‘oursc
% by Alex Agutter. These classes.
. which complement BBC Scotland's
5 TV series The Mother Tongue and Radio Scotland's The Scots Tongue
‘ cover the origins. development and
Glasgow 0 Video Talk: Krishnamurti at
enquiries to Glasgow Krishnamurti Information Centre. 33‘) 7875.
TUESDAY 8 ' Edinburgh
0 Poems on View, Images to be Read Netherbow Arts Centre. 8pm. Free. Performance poetry combining texts and images. Lawrence Butler. Kathy McGee and Gerald Loose joined by Birdyak. the bizarre trio whose
conjunction with the Yuga Night
, Exhibition which runs until3May. any“: WEDNESDAY 9 - 5g... ‘ ’7
5 Free. A talk by Andrew Graham. Park Ranger at Mugdoch (‘ountry I’ark.
Acres. Dowanhill. 8pm. £1.50 £1.
comprising l lugh Metcalfe. Bob ‘ (‘obbing. and (‘live Fcncott. ‘Song
0 Conservation and Recreation on the Urban Fringe I lyndlands Secondary School. (‘larence Drive. 7.30pm.
THE CONCERTS OF THE GLASGOW PHOENIX CHOIR
Conductor: John H. L. Cranston
0 An evening with Birdyak Four
Bar. A performance group
CITY GRAND HALL Candleriggs, Glasgow
signals‘ and unusual sounds in the style of an ‘audio nasty".
masgow 22nd, 23rd, 24th Apr 1986
o The Glasgow Tongue University of , at 7'3opm Strathclvde. 7—9pm. Ten weeks. kaets £1'75 (all seats
i Eveningcourseexaminingthc . lreserved)
', Glasgow dialect of Scots. Writers Obtalnable only from Choir contributing include Edwin Morgan. Members, and General Alan Spence. Agnes ()wens. For Secretary Mr Robert provan’
l further info ring Bill Findlay 552 22 vorlich Gardens, “(mm 3(‘37- Bearsden, Glasgow 661
1 Edinburgh 4QY,041 942 8919 0 Poetry Reading 27 George Square. DECEMBER CONCERTS
: 7.30pm. (‘harles Tomlinson reads in the CITY GRAND HALL, from his recently published ('o/leelecl GLASGOW 2nd 3rd 4th Poems. ()rganised bv SASV. ’ ’
‘ DECEMBER 1986 THURSDAY 17 Glasgow Book Early
' 0 Poetry: Douglas Dunn Studio
THE ‘L’-SHAPED : , BUNK".
...just one of a whole range of Scandinavian- style pine furniture, hand made by local craftsmen. There’s a fabulous selection of beds, bunks, blanket chests, drawer units and wardrobes available in natural,
stained or antique finish. gmsf’gfgogggg
6 Whitehouse Enterprise Centre, South Benwell, Newcastle upon Tyne, Telephone: 091-27490”
ii... i.iQii'l'iﬁpi-ii 39