Suspect (15) (Peter Yates, US, 1987) Cher, Dennis Duaid, Liam Neeson, John Mahoney. 106 mins. Cher would appearto be going lrom strength to strength, for hot on the heels of the success of Moonstruck comes this new thriller. It offers a maiorlemale role in the central character of an overworked public defender, and Cherproves herself a match for it. reamed with Dennis Duaid as a super-confident Congressional lobbyist forced into jury service but refusing to observe the no-contact rule between juror and lawyer, ‘Suspect’ has the right names to be a serious box-office draw. It also happens to be a thoroughly enjoyable lilm.
Kathleen Riley (Cher) is dumped with the defence of an apparently barabaric down and out Vietnam veteran on a murder charge over the savage killing at a young woman for a pathetic sum of money. Needless to say, all is not quite what it seems, and the death at a Supreme Court Justice could, in some strange way, be related to the murder. As happens in the best of these films, though, no one will listen.
Any more plot would ruin it, but one
delight is that the plot refuses to be read until it chooses to reveal itself, piece by tantalising piece, right up until the last moment, for which credit is due to writer Eric Roth, but especially to Peter Yates’s immensely confident direction. There is a cold,
. bleak feel to this, a sense not of the
abberation of crime but its commonplace frequency. Cher’s playing fits hand in glove with that- she plays it neither as the legal Cosmo woman nor the updated version of the
1 c155,. C.
woman who twists her ankle at every dangerous moment. Instead. she plays it tired, lrustrated, good but not brilliant at her job. In other words, you can actually believe in her.
My only reservation lies in what could be seen as exploitation of the homeless situation in Washington, but decide for yourself. If it is an old lashioned film, it could also remind you why it could ever be a fashion at all. A thriller with real thrills. (G. D. Henderson)
violence are now at the end of theirtether. One elderly couple pray for a miracle and are rewarded with the visit offriendly alien creatures who help them resist the menace of the property developers. Lacklustrc Spielberg-produced adventure lacking imagination and originality. The visual effects are occasionally attractive and amusing but children are likely to grow restless pretty quickly. Strathclydc: Kelburne I Betty Blue (18)( (Jean-Jacques Bcincix. France. 1986) Jean llughesAnglade. Beatrice Dalle. 120 mins. Tempestuous love gone mad as an older handyman and a free spirited woman embark on a passionate. pcripatetic fling that ends in tragedy. Filmed with a dazzling technique and an irritating emptiness by the maker of Diva. Glasgow: Grosvenor. I Birdy (18) (Alan Parker. US, 1984) Matthew Modine. Nicholas Cage. John Harkins. 120 mins. Atmospheric Parker adaptation of William Wharton‘s novel about a man so traumatised by his experiences that he reverts to being a bird, his passion before the war. Modine is superb as Birdy. with Cage as his friend trying to help him through the crisis in a military hospital. Some exhilarating ‘flight‘ sequences in what is a daring and largely successful film. Edinburgh: Cameo. I The Black Stallion (U) (Carroll Ballard . US, 1979) Kelly Reno. Mickey Rooney. Terri Garr. 103 mins. Widely held tobe one of the best children‘s films ever made. this story of how a young boy befriendsa black Arabian stallion. and their subsequent adventures. remains a perennial favourite. lt spawned a disappointing sequel - the chemistry only worked once. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. I Blind Date (15) (Blake Edwards. US, 1987) Bruce Willis. Kim Basinger. 95 mins. Excruciatingly contrived screwball farce with yuppie Willis coming a cropper when he stupidly plies blind date Basinger with champagne. Flat and insulting with TV star Willis displaying all the charisma of a 1980s George Lazenby. Edinburgh: Odeon. I Can't Buy Me Love (PG) er (Steve Rash. US. 1987) Patrick Dempsey. Amanda Peterson. 95 mins. More from the
angst-ridden mores of high-school anxiety in this teen movie. in which the school nerd. Ronald. attempts to win the respect of his peers and a serious cool factor by co-opting the school cheer-leader as his girl-friend. For a price. that is. Cindy. being an all-American girl. goes forthe deal without a twinge of conscience. until she starts to find Ronald actually quite cute when he is just being himself. .. Glasgow: Odeon. Strathclydc: Cannon Kilmarnock. Central: Cannon.
I The Chapel (18) (Jean-Michel Tchissoukou. France. 1980). 84 mins. Set in Africa, the film examines the tragic results of a confrontation between traditional tribal beliefs and the incoming Catholic Church . which ends in bloody destruction. Edinburgh: EUFS.
I The Coca-Cola Kid (18) (Dusan Makavejev. Australia, 1985). Eric Roberts. Greta Scacchi. 110 mins. Despite the director’s high reputation on the art house circuit, this film received only a very limited release over here, and attracted most comment for the explicit love scenes between Roberts, a pushy businessman sent out to destroy a small outback rival to the Coca-Cola empire. and Scacchi. Edinburgh: EUFS.
I Come and See (18) (Elim Klimov. USSR, 1987) Alexei Kravchenko. Olga Mironova. 142 mins. Klimov‘sepic account of an atrocious Nazi massacre in Byelorussia in 1943 is one of the genuinely great films of the decade. The horrific events are seen through the eyes ofa young boy. F lorya. who ages before our eyes in what is a remarkable performance from Alexei Kravchenko. The film is not simply a meditation on Russian history. but an epic about mankind. at once harrowing and visionary, which demonstrates that film can still take on the most monumental of issues in a serious
- fashion. Glasgow: GFT.
I Creepshow 2 (18) (Michael Gornick. US, 1987) 90 mins. Dodgy sequel to an already disappointing George Romero original, this is again based on Stephen King stories. slimmed down to three instead of five. It subsititutes moralising and occasional irruptions of gore for suspense. For fanatics only. Glasgow: Cannon Clarkston Road.
I Crime Wave (15) (John Paiz. Canada. 1987). John Paiz. 80 mins. This filmopens a short season of Canadian Independents at the Filmhouse. John Paiz directsand plays the central character. a writer who lives above the garage. suffering in the throes of writer‘s block. llis landlord‘s daughter decides to help out. Whacky and very episodic. but quite fun. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. I Cops and Robbers (PG) (Mario Monicelli. Italy. 1951). Toto. Aldo Fabrizi. William Tubbs. 106 mins. Part of Filmhouse‘s ltalian comedy season. this film rings a splendid change on the cops and robbers theme when detective Bottoni (Fabrizi) decides to try to trap a pick-pocket. Esposito (Toto). by first ingratiating himselfwith his family. The two men become friends. and Bottoni is genuinely moved by the family‘s plight in the poverty trap. Sly social satire as well as two fine comedians at work. Edinburgh: Filmhouse I Death Wish 4: The Crackdown ( 18) (J. Lee Thompson. US. 1987) Charles Bronson. Kay Lenz. John P. Ryan. 98 mins. Ageing vigilante Bronson puffs his way towards another pay cheque in this thoroughly unimaginative entry in a seemingly interminable series. Back in Los Angeles. architect Paul Kersey is seeking the quiet life once again: designing a new arts centre and planning marriage with newspaper reporter Karen Sheldon (Lenz). However . . . out on a date. Karcn‘ steenage daughter dies of a heart attack induced by a cocaine overdose. When her boyfriend confronts the drug dealer he is stabbed to death. Kersey decides it is time to dole out his particular brand of rough justice. Marginally less surprising than a three piece jigsaw this is formula fodder at its most uninspired; indiscriminate video audiences have got a lot to answer for. Strathclydc: Rialto. I The Devils ( 18) (Ken Russell. UK. 1971). Oliver Reed. Vanessa Redgrave. Dudley Sutton. 111 mins. Based on a play by John Whiting. which was based in turn on Aldous Huxley‘s The Devils of Louden. this account of demoniacal possession and witchcraft in 17th Century France was the film in which Ken Russell‘s work metamorphosed from arty eccentricity
into full-blown gothic monstrosity. complete with masturbating nuns and a public burning. Russell is nothing ifnot controversial. and your reaction will probably depend on how you stand on the director‘s idiosyncratic visions. Glasgow: GFT. I Diner( 15) (Barry Levinson. US. 1982) Mickey Rourke. Ellen Barkin. Steve Guttenberg. 110 mins. Fresh and acutely observed rite of passage story focusing on a group of friends who hang out together in a Brooklyn diner in the late 1950s. Adolescents on the brink ofadult responsibilities. the universality oftheir growing pains is nicely detailed and affectionately acted by a cast offuture luminaries. Edinburgh: Cameo I Dirty Dancing ( I5) (Emile Ardolino. US. 1987) Jennifer Grey. Patrick Swayze. Jerry Orbach. 10(1mins. Remarkably ordinary but staggerineg popular girl meets boy from the wrong side ofthe tracks musical set in an American summer camp in the year 1963. Glasgow: Cinema. I Down By Law ( 15) (Jim Jarmusch. US. 1986). John Lurie. Roberto Benigni.Tom Waits. Three petty crooks in New Orleans find themselves framed by the police (sent ‘down by law‘) and imprisoned in the heart of the Louisiana swamps. They escape. but the jailbreak is hardly relevant (and hardly explained either) — the crux ofthe film lies in the relationship between the three men as they make their amusineg hazardous way through an alien environment. Benigni just stealsthe honours from his better known comrades in Jarmusch‘s splendid. monochrome comedy. Edinburgh: Cameo. I Eddie Murphy Raw ( 18) (Robert Townsend. US. 1987) Eddie Murphy. 90 mins. Competently directed record of Murphy live. recorded at two New York concerts in which he struts his mainly four-letter stand-up act. Fine. ifyou're a fan. Glasgow: Cannon Sauchiehall Street. I Element of Crime ( 15) (Lars von Trier. Denmark. 1984) Michael Elphick. Esmond Knight. Me Me Lai. 104 mins. Enigmatic. self-reﬂexive meditation on obsession from Denmark . but shot in English in a strangely tinted black and yellow. In a vaguely futuristic. crumbling society. Elphick plays a policeman who is drawn deeper and deeper into a mysterious underworld in pursuit ofa criminal called llarry Gray. until he makes a startling discovery about himself. Edinburgh: Cameo. I Empire of the Sun (PG) (Steven Spielberg. US. 1987) Christian Bale,John Malkovitch. Miranda Richardson. 152 mins. J.G. Ballard's bestseller through the eyes of Spielberg becomes a long. sentimental account ofa young boy‘s character building exploits during the Japanese invasion of Shanghai and his subsequent internment in a prison camp. Technically admirable but ponderously paced and widly uneven. it lacks the emotional heart to capture the viewer and becomes just another big-screen spectacle. Strathclydc: Odeon Kilmarnock. Odeon. Ayr. I ET(PG) (Steven Spielberg. US. 1982). 115 mins. An alien creature gets stranded on earth (the opening sequence of threatening legs and ﬂashing torchesis beautifully done). where he is adopted by some kids. who help him construct a communication device to summoun back his spaceship. All the little guy wanted to do was go home. but Spielberg made sure he had lots of cute and agreeable adventures first. and slipped in the most tear-jerking psuedo-death since Balou the Bear in The Jungle Book for good measure. Glasgow: GFT. I Fatal Attraction ( 18) (Adrian Lyne. US. 1987) Glenn Close. Michael Douglas. Anne Archer. 119 mins. Happily married lawyer Douglas discovers the high price of infidelity when his casual one night stand turns out to be a dangerously psychotic woman who will stop at nothing to gain her
12 The List 27 May - 9 June 1988