The Presidio (15) (Peter Hyams, US, 1988) Sean Connery, Mark Harmon, Meg Ryan, Jack Warden. 98 mins. The Presidio is a sprawling US Military base, perched within view of the Golden Gate Bridge. When a member of the base police chances upon a break-in and is efficiently shot dead, a high speed chase ensues that bumps and jars its way towards an explosive climax in the streets of downtown San Francisco.
The consequent ‘multi- jurisdictional‘ investigation unexpectedly reunites cop, and one time MP, Jay Austin (Harmon) with his former Nemesis Provost Marshal Lt. Colonel Caldwell (Connery). No love is lost between the two men and the situation is exacerbated by Austin's swift and steamy infatuation with Caldwell‘s independently-minded
daughter Donna (Meg Ryan). But,
whadya know, when they pool resources and begin tracking down the bad guys a grudging respect and mutual appreciation society is formed.
Whatever its virtues, and there are some, The Presidio has little to offer by way of novelty. The paper-thin
for an inadequate script and some crass moments. creating some of the affection of a working class couple who need each other and their own folk. Overall. the result is the trivialization ofthe realevents into a bland mix of Mills and Boon with .‘vlinder. lidinburgh: Cameo.
l Chinatown (Roman Polanski. US. 1974)
i conspiracy plot, the odd-Couple
é partnering,the angst-ridden
father-daughter relationship et al piles cliche on cliche and with an injection of irreverent humour could have toppled the whole thing over into parody.
However, Peter Hyams is an excellent technical orchestrator of thick-eared mayhem and one of the few directors who is also his own cameraman. Thus, the innumerable chases are well-staged, crisply edited and atmospherically placed whilst the actors add a dash of authenticity with some Iimb~endangering stuntwork.
One may entertain severe doubts aboutthe implausibility of it all, but they are quashed (during the film
Jack Nicholson. Faye Dunnaway. John Huston. 131 mins. Private eyeJakes (iittes takes on a routine casein 19371.». and ends up uncovering more than he bargained for. Splendid conspiracy thriller with a handsome period look and a quite superlative cast. Izdinburgh: Cameo.
I Cocktail ( 15) 31' (Roger Donaldson. L'S.
anyway) by the film’s chief asset, Sean Connery, whose seasoned charisma and skill give weight to the ropiest of dialogue.
Connery's role as an emotionally stunted. by-the-book military curmudgeon is almost as old as celluloid itself, but he gives it an emotional credibility and conviction that is a pleasure to watch and such is his unquestionable presence that Harmon is rendered mere wallpaper in their every shared scene.
Aformula thrillerwith lew suprises, The Presdio hardly taxes Scotland’s favourite Oscar-winner but his performance is still what lifts it out of the rut. (Allan Hunter)
1988) Tom Cruise. Bryan Brown. Elizabeth Shue. 95 mins. Cruise plays a greenhorn inducted into the mysteriesof all-action bartending by master cocktail shaker Brown. and before long they are pulling in the punters at a top New York club before being signed up to grace a swanky poolside bar in the Caribbean.
Au revolt les
~. 43¢ v5, .Wﬁw ,:o 1*
At F ILMHOUSE, EDINBURGH from Sunday 15th
l ‘is is a film I urge you to see . . . Exquisite . eply Moving.”
Barry Norman. Film '88
and at GFT from Monday 23rd
A LOU IS MALLE FILM .._.
However. a failed romance with poor little rich girl Shue soon has him questioningthe vapidity of his entire life.
Unintentionally hilarious glossy soaper. whose pretensions to social comment have been laughed off the screen by preview audiences. Which maybe explains why the distributors are reluctant to show it to the press. That'll probably not stop the film taking money. but considering the talent involved it has to be accounted a considerable disappointment. Glasgow: Cannon Clarkston Road. (irosvenor. ()deon. Edinburgh: ()deon. Central: Allanpark. Caledonian. Strathclyde: ()deon Ayr. Kelburne. Rialto. WMR.
I College ( L') (Buster Keaton. US. 1927) Buster Keaton. (15mins. Impressive example of classic period Keaton. as he plays the college nerd out to get the girl. llis attempts at sporting prowess at first amount to exquisitely executed failure, but eventually his wonderful physical co-ordination wins through. Release prints usually come complete with tinting and music track. lidinburgh: Filmhouse. I Crimes of Passion ( 18) (Ken Russell. L'S. 1984) Kathleen Turner. Anthony Perkins. John Laughlin. 107 mins. Russell's debunking of the American way of sex is an uproariously black satire where moonlighting whore meets dildo-packing clergyman meets Human Penis. A strident and courageous piece of filmmaking in that it casts the men asthe oppressors. Russell‘s best in years. Edinburgh: Cameo
I Cry Freedom (PG) (Richard Attenborough. US. 1987) Denzel Washington. Kevin Kline. John Thaw. 158 mins. Although not without its flaws. Attenborough's biographical re-creation of the friendship between black civil rights activist Steve Biko and white liberal newspaperman Donald Woods is his best film to date; an epic. moving drama that also stands as a vigorous condemnation of the obscenity ofapartheid. Strathclyde:
14 The List 13 — 26 January