The Last Temptation Of Christ (18) xi.- (Martin Scorsese, US, 1988) Willem Dafoe, Harvey Keitel, Barbara Hershey, Harry Dean Stanton. 163 mins. Scorsese's film version of Nikos Kazantzakis's novel, while it maybe controversial, hardly strikes one as blasphemous oroflensive. Following the lines of the book's portrayal of Christ torn between the intimations of his divine late and the human feelings of sexual desire and physical pain. the film nevertheless appears moved by genuine reverence.
Willem Dafoe makes for a rather traditional looking Christ, but it is something of a surprise when the beginning of the film casts Him as a crucifix maker forthe Romans. He is castigated for his lack of political nous byJudas (Harvey Keitel), who is to assume a fundamental role in the development of the narrative. It is Judas who is both catalyst for Christ‘s message of forgiveness and instrumental in His growing awareness of his role as messiah: here, it is Christ who persuades Judas into an act of betrayal so that in sacrifice He can fulfil His destiny.
Forthe most part though. this is a conventional enough version of the ministry, following through the sermon on the mount, temptation in the desert, the raising of Lazarus, and confrontaton with the moneychangers in the Temple. The recreation of Judea looks effective enough, benelitting
IThe Big Easyr islrlim McBride-.t‘s. 198") Dennis ()uaid. lzllen Barkin. .\'ed Beatts. llll mins_ l’retis smart and se\} copthriller set in a siseat).atmospheiic .\’e\s Orleans where local lieutenant ()uaid triestoclear up a seriesolgangland murders. all the sshile tallmgrn lo\e\\ith Barkin's attorne} . in tois n to rm estigale police corruption. (ilasgms (il‘l Edinburgh: l’ilni(iuild. I The Big Parade l 15 i (then Klage. (’hina. Who) \Vaitg Xueqr. Sun (bun. l.u lei. 9-1mriis ls’aige'slorig-dclased second g featureisaconteiiipoi'ar} dramalollossing a thetateottourhundredsoluntecr's embarkingononeicar'sgriielling. intensise trainriigtossin a place inthc troop parade across l’cking's 'l ianannien Square on National Da_\ in 19M. Althoughaltered tocompl} \sith l’l.A concern at its less than flattering image of the arm} . this has still been hailed asan ironic coninientai_\ on the issue of lit)\\ far the ' long march of (‘hinese histor} has actuall} progressed ' and isanother c\ample ot the rigorous \ rsual control ol the .\'e\s ('hinese ('mema (ilasgoss (if-'1 I Bifoxi Bluesr 15) r Mike Nichols. t'S. WM) .\latthe\s Broderick . ('hristopher \Valkcri. (ore) l’ai’kei ll)" mins. Second instalment latter Brie/iron Hear It \Ieniorrs lot \L‘ll Simon‘sniosic autobiograph} tocusses on his misad\ eriturcsasan arm} rookie during the d} trig da_\ s ol \\ or ld \\ ai‘ 'l \s o A taiiiiliar recipe ot basic training caper s and the first lose routine is transloi med into something fresh b_\ a sass_\ script. \\ alkcn and Broderick‘s cliche-tree performances. and the practisedcineritaticciattol director Mike \iehols (ilasgtm (aniion Sauchieliall Street. lzdrnburgh Cannon I The Blues Brothers l 15) (.lohn landis. IS. 105”) John Belushi. Dan Askrosd. (‘arrie l'isher 133 mins. l‘.l\\ood and .loliet .lake Blues are on a mission from ('rod to raise the mone_\ that \s ill pi‘c\ eiit the closure of an orphanage. \luch
immensely from the rich dusky tones of
J Michael Balhaus‘s cinematography
and Peter Gabriel's uplifting ethnic score, though Paul Schrader‘s screenplay is not without its moments of risible banality(Lazarus is asked how he is feeling, for instance). Most striking perhaps is the evocation of the brute physical suffering of crucifixion. The crack of bone and the spurt of blood as the nails drive in tends to shake up the rather blasé familiarity with which we tend to view the image of a man on the cross.
However, as everyone knows by now, it isthe following sequence thathas aroused mostattention. The last forty minutes presents an explicit fantasy sequence whereby Christ has a vision
automotn c max hem. and a line soundtrack of the best of R’n’B isthe result (ilasgots f (ir‘oss erioi'.
I Le Boucherr l5) ((‘laudc Chabrol. l-‘rance ltal}. WW) .lean Yanne. Stephane Audran W3 riiins. In asmall French
pros incial toss it. a trriiid butcher eoui ts an equth unassuming schoolriiistrcss asa series of brutal sla_\ iiigs shock the local coiiiriiuriit} l’art llitchcoekianthriller. part character stud} . this is(‘habrol at his esqursitc ( iallic best. (ilasgois ; ( il’l‘
I British Transport Films in e lllms on
\ arioiis aspects of Scottish lite made h} some of Britain's most noted doctiirientaz'ists for British l'r'ansport l‘lllil\ in the early Sistres The programme runs for lll.‘ rniris approx. ladinbuigh: l-ilnihouse
IThe Bugs Bunny Bio An L‘lglll}-ltlllttllL' re\ less of the career of Warner Brothers best-lo\ cd animated character. featuring a host ol classic ( ~httcls .lortescai'tooris. (ilasgoss (il‘l. IBugsyMalonert'i(.-\lan l’ai'kci'. t'ts’. l‘Vfil Scott Baio. .lodre l'ostei‘. .\lai tiii
1 cs . 03 miiis. .\ltisica| spoot‘ot Prohibition era gangster lilnis \s ith an all-child cast l-aiiiil} entertainment pure and simple. and a true original \\ ith it asxs ell. l'dinburgh. l~ilmhoiisc
I Clermont-Ferrand Shorts litesh from this _\eai 's l'dmburgh l‘iliii l‘L'SlIM'il'eitlth these progrmnies of highl} inseiitiseshoit films. selected from ten searsotthe ('lerriionrl-eirand csent that isdesoted entiieh to the more compact end of the medium l-diiibriigh: l-ilnihouse
I Coming To Americar 15 l (.lohri Landis. l‘S. l‘l\\l l‘thlle \lurphi . Arseriio l lall .lanies l‘tlllltlllL‘S llfimins .\luiph\ is
l’i nice A kccni. heir to the throne ol'a tabirlousl_\ \sealth) central African state. but dissatisfied \s ith the bride arranged for himbs Kinglanies l:arl.lories liistead.he
tia\els to \e“ \oi'k \\ ith sidekick l lall to seek hrsossn choice otqucen.
()\ ei long and not ter‘ribI} hilarious
12The List 16- 29 September 1988
AST TEMPTATlON OF CHRIST“
of stepping down off the cross. and living life as a married man with Mary Magdelene until his old age. Yet. once again Judas appears to remind the Lord of the faith he had in Him, and Christ‘s recognition of His physical and divine duality is marked by the realisation that what he is seeing is a temptation sent by the Devil. Only by resisting the temptation of ordinary manhood can Christ be both God and man is the obvious thesis here, and Scorsese’s presentation of it is above all an act of faith. Dnlythe most literal-minded of Christians will be offended by this discursive treatment of the Christian myth, though the rest of us might find that163 minutes is just a little too much of it. (Trevor Johnston)
.‘slurphi \ehiele. “ith the star in se\ eral roles doing his best to pump lil'e intoa sentimental script. (ilasgms (‘annon Sauehiehall Street. Strathchde: Rialto I The Couch Trip r l5) (Michael Ritchie. (TS. 1958) Dan A} ki‘o}d. Walter Matthau.(‘harles(ii'odin ‘lhrnins 'lop [..A. psschiatrist (irodm. \\ ith a popular radio phone-iii programme and a thrix mg practice seeks a replacement for his media actii ities \\ hile he takes a \sell-eariicd rest. lloss eser dangerous mental patient .'\}lslti)tl[3()\e‘Sit\ttSlTl'llllK toclrnchthc ltrciatise pose. and onl} \li}\lel' \latthau. \s ho klitm s his real idcritits . stands betiseen him and a fortune.
Some good iokcs in this frenetic tar cc “ith a less aspirations tossaids bar l‘ed satire. though .\latthau'smei‘bcuriingaiid olten iiiettcetncco-starring role lcndsto dim A} krosd's den of good moments I ‘Crocodile' Dundee II t l’(ilf.lohn ('oi'iicll. Atistralra. l‘lb'hl l’aiil l logaii. l.rnda ls'o/lossski. .lolin \leillon. I ll mms \ot entrrel_\ unexpected sequel has llogan’s Dundee retracing his steps from Manhattan to the Aussie bush to protect his girlfriend journalist Krilltnssls‘l from the unwanted attentions of a garigot ('olombiandiugpcdlais
A lariie sei ipt and l logaii‘s catatonic underplasrng mar thisantipodean eomeds -ad\entuie to the c\terit that \\ hat \s ill tindottbtcdl} be one of the year ‘s most popular leatiires also has logodoxsrias oneot itsmost tedious (ilasgois ('armon SauchiehallStreet l'diriburgh. Dominion.
I Cry Freedom ( Hi i r Richard .-\lteiiboroiigh. l'S. l‘lbﬁl Den/cl \Vashmgton. KL'HH Kline. .lohri lhau 15S niins Although not without itstlaus. .-\ttenboiough's biographical recreation ol the lrieridship betsseen black cis il rights actis rst Sle\e Biko and white liberal
ness spapei man Donald Woods is his best film to date. an epic. mm irig drama that alsostandsas a \igoi‘ous condeiiinationol
the obscenity ofapartheid. Strathclide: (‘lydebank ll).
I Doctor Strangelove (Or Hate ISIUp/h’d rim-mug .‘lllrl Learned I’o Lore I’Iie Bum/H ( l’(i l (Stanles Kubrick. l'ls'. WM) Peter Sellers. (ieorge C. Scott. Sterling llasden. 93 mins. Desastatingblack Ctiltte‘tl} on the lunacs of the'nucleai‘ age \\ llll Seller's ideall} cast In three t'ttlesl l IS l’rcsident. loll} Brit captain. and demented teutonic botliriland Slim l’ickeris the good ole ho} heading for ()l‘ll\ lot) to a chorus of '\\.e.ll Meet Again', Still alarmingls i'elesaiit. l'dinbtiigh; l-iliiihoiise
I Dogs in Spacer is) i Richard l.o\scnstein. Aiisti‘alia. I‘Nil Michael
l lutchencc. Saskia l’ost. ( 'hr'is l lasssood lfl‘I mins, 'l he _\ouiig and inluiratiiigls talented director of Strike/mum! returns \sith something coriipletcls different: a punk-era \ ersion ol' Airs/ii r/le brimming \\ ith rass energs . a multiplrcits of characters and the expected interlocking stories.
Set in 1973 Melbourne the ramshackle plot centres around Sam. the lead singer in a punk band called Dogs in Space. and his girlfriend Anna. \s ho are t\sool the inhabitants of a drop-in any time house populated bi punks. \egetarians. students and an} one else interested in an alternatise litestsle incoporating parties. gigs. 'l'\'. random discussions and loadsa drugs. l otsol epheriieral incidents transpire the most significant of is hich is the arris al of a ness stlppl} ot' herointhat leads to one death b} oserdose.
(‘ritic-dis iding jamboree hailed as a serious \\ ork about ‘the end of an era and the coming do“ n to earth out of theorbrt ot tun-seeking irresponsibilit) ' or dismissed as a looscl) directed seriesol diserse elements lacking 'stsle and subtlet} ‘. A certain ssnipath} \siththe punk ethos probabl_\ helps. lidrnburgh: ('ameo.
I Dudes ( 15) f l’cnelope Spheeris. L'S. l‘)ts"').lohii ('t_\ei'. Daniel Roebuck. ('atherine Mar} Stenart ()7 riiins. 'l‘hree New York punks dri\ ing across.-\rrieriea run into a \ iolent gang in the West. but help arriies in the form of some ghostl} cots boss and mdians to sa\c their trip, l'nlikel} confrontation DL'[\\L‘L‘ll the punk ethos and the \\ iId \\ est \\ hich makes for a cheerful and at times quite insentise \ ariation on the road mos ies of the earh Se\ critics. I dinbuigh: (‘aiiieo l'ilmhouse. I Dumbo ( l ' l ( Ben Sharpsteen. t'S. l‘Hll hJ mins. The rest of the circusaniinals make fun ot the little elephant with the huge ears. btit he diseo\ei's the) lime a tise after all ( lassic l)l\llL‘_\ animatedtcature. timelessentcr'tainriient Strathclsde. ('lidebaiik Ill. I Empire ofthe Sun r P( i l ( Stcs en Spielberg. l'S. l‘lﬁ"l(‘hristiaii Baledohn .\lalko\ itch. \liianda Richardson. 153 mins .l (i. liallaid'sbestseller thiotighthe e} es of Spielberg becomes a long. sentimental account of a _\ouiigbo_\ 's character building esploits during the Japanese in\asion of Shanghai and his subsequent inter nment in a prison camp. 'l echnrcalls admirable but porideioush paced and \\ idl) tlfle\ en. ll lacksthe emotional heart to capture the \ iesserand becomes rust another big-screen spectacle l'tlllll‘tlltlli. (ameo I Les Enfants Du Paradis r l’(i l r \larccl (ariie. l‘raricc. l‘lJJl Ailett} . lean-Louis Harrault. l’iei re lir‘asseur. 105 iiiins. Paris in the l.\~1fls Amidthesccthirigheartol the french capital's tlieatie street. a mime ai list falls in lose \\ ith the delicious but flirtatious ( iai nace (me of the cinema's most e\ti'a\agarit|) L'llltt}ttl7lL' productions. this gorgeous clepharrtine \sallou ot a film is crammed \\ ith incident and compelliiigls curioustiallie comic characters (ilasgim. (il’l. I Fatal Attractionr Ls) (Adrian l.}iie. 13. NS" l ( ilcnn (lose. Michael Douglas. Anne Archer. ll‘) nims. llappil} married