slowburning. memorable gags. all undercut by the stabbing notion that we all have an uncle exactly like 1 lulot. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. I Moonwalker ( L') (Jerry Kramer dig (‘olin ('hilvers. US. 1988) MichaelJackson. Sean Lennon. Kellie Parker. Joe Pesei. 100 mins. The Jacko plan for complete world domination continues apace with this ragbag of bits and pieces masquerading as a feature film. We get some old Jackson Five footage ; an animated section by Jim AIMS/w Was Bashfiled: a song called Builder starring an eight year-old Jackson lookalike; and an extended video for the track Smrmlh ('riminul. which has our Michael leadinga double life as both clean-cut good guy and fedora-topped gangster figure. Strathclyde: WMR. I Muppets Take Manhattan ( 1') (Frank 02.. US. 1984) Kermit. Miss Piggy. Fozzie Bear. 9-1mins. The Muppets try tobreak into Broadway with their college show. Amusing use of outdoor New York locations and top guest star appearances from the likes ofJoan Rivers and(iregory Hines mark this out as superior fun forthc family. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. I The Naked Gun ( 15) (David Zucker. LS. 1988) Leslie Nielsen. Priscilla Presley. Ricardo .‘vlontalban. 85 mins. Nielsen gets a crack at a leading comic role as Frank Drebin. a disaster prone 1.A cop assigned to find the men who shot his colleague in a drugs bust. and protect our dear Queen at the same time. while also finding room for romance with secretary Presley.

The makers of Airplane here ope rate on a similar principle: keep it fast. keepit marvelloust dumb. and the comic dividends will eventually flow. (ilasgow: (‘annon Sauchiehall Street. Edinburgh: Dominion. Strathclyde: AMCC‘Iydebank WMR. I Les Parents Terribles ( l’(i ) (Jean Cocteau. France. 1948) Jean Marais. Yvonne dc Bray. (iabrielle Dorizat. 98


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mins. Filmed version of(‘octeau‘s domestic play where the children are as neurotic as the parents. with the autor coaxing performances ofsome flexibility from an excellent cast as much at home

with the piece’s tragic elements as they are

with its broad comedy. Glasgow GFT.

I Patty Hearst ( 15) 13' (Paul Schrader. US. 1988) Natasha Richardson. William Forsythe. Ving Rhames. 108 mins. See panel. Edinburgh: Cameo.

I Performance ( 18) (Nic Roeg 6’: Donald Cammell. UK. 1970) James Fox. Mick Jagger. Anita Pallenberg. 105 mins. A

gangster on the run and a famous rock star

in seclusion hole up in a London mansion. and amidst a welter ofsex and drugsthcir two lives begin to intertwine. Fascinating avant-garde-ish mosaic that announced the arrival of two unique directorial talents. though the fragmentary narrative and visual overload make it an uneasy experience. Edinburgh: Cameo. I Planes, Trains and Automobiles ( 15) (John Hughes. US. 1987) Steve Martin. John Candy. Laila Robbins. 92 mins. Hughes relinquishes his position as the most pertinent commentator on teenage woes and graduates with honours in the side-splitting adult comedy stakes. Martin is a harrassed (‘hicago businessman desperate to return home from New York for the Thanksgiving celebrations. Aftera frenzied attempt to catch the last flight home he undergoes a series of increasingly fraught misadventures. Along the way he meets (‘andy's accident prone shower curtain salesman and they inadvertently become travelling companions through treacherous snow. hell. high waterand mutual incompatibility. Glasgow: (iF'I‘. I Platoon ( 15) (Oliver Stone. US. 1986) ('harlie Sheen. Willem Dafoe, Tom Berenger. 120mins. Writer-veteran Stone‘s multiple ()scar-winner seeks to portray. as vividly as possible. the experience of the ordinary infantryman on combat duty in Vietnam around the turn


Patty Hearst (18) (Paul Schrader, US, 1988). Natasha Richardson, William Forsythe, Ving Rhames, Frances Fisher. 108 mins. The fictional re-creation of real events is always a dangerous area for film-makers to dabble in, and nowhere more so than when the principals are still alive and seeking some degree of self- justification. No stranger to controversy, Paul Schrader is too shrewd an artist to simply allow himself to become an apologist for Patty Hearst; the director essentially

18 The List 7 3113\prll 1989

of 1967/68. The result is both harrowing.


I Punchline (15) fr (David Seltzer. LS. 1988) Tom Hanks. Sally Field. John Goodman. Lilah Krystick (Field) is a New Jersey housewife and mother of three who longs to tread the boards as a stand-up comic. as does medical student Steven (iold ( l lanks). They both get their chance at the (ias Station. a local comedy club that offers newcomers a chance on stage

! convincing and moving. Edinburgh:

While the tears-of-a-clown element to this serious attempt at exploring the personal cost of laughter is perhaps rather predictable. the film does offer an

! before a critical audience.

i intriguingglancebehindthefootlights.

looking at the pressures involved in

delivery. Hanks excels in a more challenging role than usual. while Field is. well Field.

I Rain Man ( 15) (Barry l.evinson. LS. 1988) Dustin Hoffman. '1‘om('ruise. Valeria (iolino. 11-1mins.lmpecunious smalltime hustler (‘harlie Babbitt ((‘ruise) ends up kidnapping his previously unknown autistic savant brother Raymond (Hoffman). when theirlate father leaves his $3 million fortune to the latter. However. as the two cross America by road genuine feelings offraternal affection well up between them.

The 1989 major Oscar winner is a warmhearted and touching buddy movie that scrupulously avoids sentimentality. and boasts a detailed performance from Hoffman that skilfully elicits both compassion and frustration. (ilasgow: (‘annon Sauchiehall Street. ()deon. Salon. Edinburgh: ()deon. (‘entralr Allanpark. (‘annon Falkirk. Strathclyde: AMC (‘lydebank. (‘annon Kilmarnock. Kelburne. ()deon Ayr. ()deon Hamilton. Rialto.

I Repulsion ( 18) (Roman Polanski. l'K.

1 developing material and honing a stvle of

1965) (‘atherine Deneuve. Ian 1 lendry.

hijacks herstory, and turns it into a vehicle fora very characteristic psychological study.

Hearst (Richardson), the daughter of newspaper proprietor Randolph Hearst, was abducted from her apartment in Berkeley, where she was a student with little interest in politics, by an organisation calling themselves ; the Symbionese Liberation Army. The ! SLA were an ill-assorted group of white ; radicals led by a charismatic but I seriously unbalanced black leader. and I the kidnapping ofthe heiress (in February of 1974) put them on the front pages of the world‘s newspapers. In


John Fraser. 105 mins. Left on her own in her sister‘s flat for a few days. a sexually repressed young woman gradually deteriorates towards a complete mental breakdown. Polanski‘s first English language movie remains one of his best. a genuinely disturbing exploration of intense paranoia and claustrophobia that unflinchineg picks at the audience's deepest neuroses. Edinburgh: French Institute.

I The Loves of Robert Burns This vintage curiosity is a British film from 1930 chronicling the romances ofthe ploughrnan and the poet. with then internationally renowned Edinburgh-born tenorJoseph Hislop offering stirring performances of Burns' ballads and poetry. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

I Le Sauvage ( 15) (Jean-Paul Rappencau. France. 1978) Yves Montand. Catherine Deneuve. Dana Wynter. 110mins. Businessman Montand flees from his haranguing wife Wynter to find himselfon a small tropical island with runaway heiress Deneuve. The charm of the stars just about carries this strained French attempt at crazy comedy in the Thirties llollvwood mode. Edinburgh: French Institute.

I Scandal ( 18) (Michael Caton-Jones, L'K.1989)JohnHurt.Joanne \‘v'hallcy-Kilmer. Ian McKellen. Bridget Fonda. 114 mins. Stylish andinvolving treatment of the 1963 Profumo affair. which looks at the the tangled love life of (‘hristine Keeler (Whalley-Kilmer) who numbers War Minister John Profumo (McKellen) and Russian agent Eugene 1vanov(Jeroen Krabbe) among her sexual partners. and exposes the establishment's hypocritical treatment of her mentor Stephen Ward (Hurt) when the scandal broke.

Assured debut for young Scots director ('aton-Jones combines story-telling poise and emotional punch with a knowing sexuality of flip entertainment value. John

addition to some successful bank robberies, it was their only noteworthy act, but it began one of the oddest episodes in the history of the American underground, an ultimately farcical tragedy which ended in the death of all but three ofthe members in a Los Angeles shoot-out.

The real scandal, though, was that Hearst herself, locked in a cupboard for six weeks and subject to harsh mental and sexual abuse, eventually joined the group, and was subsequently jailed for her part in a bank robbery. Although the film is based on her own rather manipulative account of those experiences, it is not the place to look for an explicit answer to why Hearst became an urban guerilla -that question is never fully resolved. Instead, Schraderseems most fascinated by the huge metaphysical questions raised by the apparent

sweeping away of Hearst’s identity, and whatthat implies aboutthe

universal fragility ofthe sell.

For that reason, the film is at its most interesting in its first third, a superbly cinematic evocation of isolation and mental stress, using lighting and

unusual camera anglesto re-create her

nightmare weeks in confinement. Hearst's recantation remains not quite convincing, and the film never

. recaptures the edge and intensity of the opening once she has emerged from

her literal prison into what she would like us to believe was a metaphorical one. (Kenny Mathieson)

k l