Sid and Nancy (18) (Alex Cox, UK, 1986) Gary Oldman, Chloe Webb, David liayman. 110 mins. You do have to hand it to Alex Cox ior daring to make a movie whose very subject matter launches him into a potential mlneileid oi controversy and preconceptions. As a matter oi policy, some will object to
~ any ilim which depicts/gloriiies a
legendary drug-taker like Sid Vicious, others will wish that punk be tell to rest in peace, and beady eyes all round will
be eager to spot any material
3 inaccuracies in the portrayal oi those i modern ioik heroes The Sex Pistols.
The result is that Cox has a iiim that people are queueing up to dislike without having seen it.
Well, Sid and Nancy is no masterpiece, but it's got a hell oi a lot more going ior it than all the knockers might have hoped. The story is, oi course, already iamiilar to anyone interested in the movie, but (tor the benelit oi our older readers) basically
3 concerns the plight oi our hero Sid
(Gary Oldman), bassist in The Sex Pistols as they belch and sweartheir
? way into the history books at rock 'n’
roll during the late Seventies, who, innocent that he is, gets mixed up with a lot ol nasty substances that
: responsible ioumaiists have no wish to
giamorlse, and shacked up with a rather nasty young lady, one Nancy Spungen (Chloe Webb), whose sole purpose in Iiie appears to be the conspicuously heavy consumption oi the said substances. Needless to say,
the path to rock martyrdom is not a
smooth one, and things do not end happilyior the delightful couple.
As he adeptly demonstrated with Repo Man, Alex Cox is a man with a sense oi FUN, and this is borne out again by the ilrst two-thirds oi the movie, which locuses on the Plstois tormation, stardom, and devil-may-care Iliestyie. The band’s early gigs, and such milestones as the Thames boat party and the Bill Grundy incident are all handled with considerable verve and (Andrew Schotield’s woelui Lydon impersonation excepted) satlsiylng attention to detail. Oldman and Webb, on the other had, give their all as the central duo, and the lormer's astonishing physical resemblance to
in t e production enlivens an otherwise musty sword and sorcery epic set in the Middle Ages when a black knight and his trusty hawk set out to avenge their exile at the hands of the evil Bishop of Aquila. Edinburgh; Filmhouse
0 Legend (PG) (Rjdley Scott, US, 1985) Tom Cruise, Mia Sara, Tim Curry. 94 mins. Wildly self-indulgent fairy tale in which good and evil clash once more. Pretty pictures help to distract the eye but nothing can stop the mind picking over the bones of a shambolic narrative. Edinburgh; Filmhouse
O Lianna (18) (John Sayles, US, 1983) Linda Grifﬁths, Jane Hallaren, Jon De Vries. 110 mins.
Lianna is a woman in her thirties
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Vicious adds to the movie’s general air oi credibility as a breathlesst outrageous bio-pic. So tar, so good.
However, with the break-up oi the band and the lovable pair’s residence in New York’s Chelsea Hotel things go sadly awry. Cox is obviously trying to make some sort oi anti-drug statement, and the brute sordldness oi the events and surroundings certainly gets this across, but, dramatically speaking, the succession ot screaming matches and stoned evenings in lront oi the box lacks any sort oi variety or drive and the movie driits into tedium. We spend a good haii hour waiting ior the
with two children stuck in a suffocating marriage. Attending some evening classes she falls in love with her teacher — another woman. The ﬁlm then charts the differing reactions to her admission of being lesbian and her attempt to carve an independent, often lonely, existence as a single woman. A sensitive, understated and, above all, humanistic drama about a young woman’s coming to terms with her own sexuality. Glasgow; GFT
O Louiou (18) (Maurice Pialat, France, 1980) Gerard Depardieu, Isabelle Huppert, Guy Marchand. 105 mins. Huppert leaves stable, earnest and not a little dull hubby Marchand, a middle-class businessman, for mad, bad and
gruesome twosome to die. Then, after Sid stabs the love of his lite and leaves her to bleed to death on the bathroom iloor, Cox tosses in an absurd tantasy ending, with the two driving away to heroin heaven in a big car, which by iinally romanticlsing the whole ailair undermined the harrowing material which has come beiore it.
So, the iinai impression is that of a near-miss, a bit oi a mish-mash. But then Britain doesn't make many movies that are about and ior The Kids, so ior that at least we should be thankful. (TrevorJohnston)
dangerous-to‘know Loulou, a scruffy but dashing biker played by Depardieu. Edinburgh; Filmhouse.
o The Money Pit (PG) «a (Richard Benjamin, US, 1985) Tom Hanks, Shelley Long, Alexander Godunov.
91 mins. Yuppie couple Hanks and Long desperately need a roof over their heads. Chancing upon a bargain priced near-palatial mansion they jump at the chance of a cheap acquisition ofa potential dream house. A nightmare of faulty plumbing, exploding cookers and domestic mayhem ensues chronically depleting their bank balance and threatening their very relationship. Entirely predictable, utterly undistinguished light comedy with appealing performers who try
hard to paper over the cracks of ancient gags and obvious situations. Glasgow; ABC Sauchiehall Street. Lothian; ABC. Strathclyde; ABC Greenock, ABC Kilmarnock.
0 Naked Childhood (15) (Maurice Pialat, France, 1968) Michel Tarrason, Linda Gutemberg. Maurice Pialat’s first feature is a compassionate study of an unwanted young boy who is farmed out to a string of prospective foster parents after being abandoned by his mother. Typically shooting on location and using non-professional actors, Pialat builds up a convincing picture of a society trying to cope with a thorny problem, and one which does not come to any glib conclusions. Edinburgh; Filmhouse
0 Out oi Alrica (PG) (Sydney Pollack, US, 1985) Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, Klaus Maria Brandauer. 161 mins. A carefully measured accountofthe tragic romantic life of great Dane Karen Blixen. The awe-inspiring beauty of the location photography mark out the continent as the film’s greatest star. Glasgow; GFT o Peppermint Freedom (PG) (Martine Rosenbaum, W Germany, 1982) Saskia Tyroller, Peter Fonda. 112 mins. In Germany over the period 1943 to 1950 a child growing up tries to piece together and understand the world around her. A perceptive and entertaining child’s eye view of things which agreeably highlights the absurdity of the adult world and comes out as a profound anti~war statement into the bargain. Glasgow: GET 0 Personal Best (18) (Robert Towne, US, 1982) Mariel Hemingway, Scott Glenn, Patrice Donnelly. 127 mins. The first feature to be directed by top screenwriter Robert (Chinatown) Towne is an intensely physical study ofwomen‘s athletics, and in particular the lesbian relationship of budding Olympic pentathlete Hemingway and her fellow competitor Donnelly (in real life a former Olympic hurdler). Skilfully integrating actors and sportsan and women, Towne eschews the self-conscious daring and sentimentality that can so often creep into the treatment of this sort of material to concentrate on a documentary-style portrayal of the agony competitors put themselves through in the name ofambition. Edinburgh; Filmhouse o The Philadelphia Story (PG) (Stewart Raffill, US, 1984) Michael Pare, Nancy Allen, Bobby Di Cicco. 101 mins. During World War II, a top secret naval experiment goes disastroust awry creating a time vortex through which two ordinary guys are transported to 1984.
Back to the Future showcased the potential for fun in a time travel adventure but this film adopts a resolutely jokey approach and some appalling dialogue thus wasting a good idea by not taking it seriously. Glasgow; Grosvenor 0 Plenty (15) (Fred Schepisi, US, 1985) Meryl Streep, Charles Dance, John Gielgud. 124 mins. One woman‘s disillusion with her lot in post-war Britain symbolises the