I The Accidental Tourist ( 15) (Lawrence Kasdan. US. 1988) William Hurt. (ieena Davis. Kathleen Turner. Amy Wright. l2] mins. Macon Leary(Hurt) isa successful travel guide writer. but his placid home life is disturbed when his wife (Turner) walks out. Left to hisown devices. he soon finds himself falling for kooky dog trainer Muriel (Davis). and as he becomes attached to her unconventional manner and sickly little son. he begins to realise that even the best prepared traveller must be ready to face the unexpected detour.
llurt‘s impressive performance is at the centre of the film's quiet domestic strengths and its absorbing depiction of everyday Baltimore lives; but a strained set of too-eccentric secondary characters tends to obscure the movingordinariness of the film's core. (ilasgow: (irosvenor. I The Accused ( 18) (Jonathan Kaplan. IS. 1988) Kelly Mc(iillis. Jodie Foster. Berni (‘oulson. lll mins. Sarah Tobias (Jodie Foster) is raped on a pinball machine by three men. yet when the assailants are taken to court. a plea bargain with Sarah's lawyer Kathryn Murphy ( Kelly Mc(iillis) reduces their charges. When both women realise this is a sell-out. they decide to bring charges against the men in the bar who cheeredon the attack and offered encouragement to the rapists.
Standout performance from Foster in this sympathetic and responsible treatment ofdifficult subject matter. whose firm grasp of character and honest intentions help allay one's reservations about the content. (ilasgow: ('annon Sauchiehall Street. Iidinburgh: Filrnhouse. ('entral: Regal.
I The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (I’(i)(Terry (iilliam. l'S. l988).lohn Neville. Sarah Polley. Iirie Idle. Robin Williams. 126 mins. (iilliam'sfabulously expensive 18th century fantasia begins in a city under siege from the Turks where the populace are being entertained by a theatrical extravaganza based on the tall tales of Baron Munchausen. whereupon the lad himself appears to give a first-hand account of his adventures and save the
(iilliam‘s extravagant visual sensibility guides thisoccasionally misfiringmaniac epic through its sticky patches. but there is so much to look at and enough genuine laughs that his relentless campaign against mediocre convention is more than justified. (‘entralz Allanpark.
I AlienS( l8) (James('ameron. I ‘S. l98b) Sigourney Weaver. Michael Bielin. 137mins. Revived from a 57-year snooze in deep space. Warrant Officer Weaver is cajoled into joining a marine rescue mission to the planet that is home forthe original alien beastie. l'nrelentingly paced with a terrifically gutsy performance from Weaver. this nerve-shredding sequel not only matches its predecessor but cantiin surpasses it. An ()scar winner for special effects. Iidinburglt: Cameo.
I Amadeus ( PU) (Mllos Forman. 173, 198-1 ) Tom llulcc. I-ﬂMurray Abraham. loll mins. Based on the stage play by Peter Shaffer. with l lulce in the Mozart role created by Simon ('allow and (‘allow in a supporting role. The doomy plot concerns a slightly risible title fight for a place in posterity between a (iod-fearing but mediocre talent and a musical genius. l'neonvincing but redeemed by strong visuals ( Forman returning to ( 'm'kou's Nest territory for the framing scenes) and a
The Blob (18) (Chuck Russell, US, 1989) Kevin Dillon, Shawnee Smith. 95 mins. The space sponge is back with a budget. The Blob gets a welcome and imaginative revamp by Chuck Russell in a spot-on remake of the cult monster movie. Re-interpreling all the potent moments from the 505’ original in sophisticated special effect terms, the Nightmare 3 director crafts comfortable ‘homage’ trading neatly on nostalgia. By updating the plot to include 808’ social mores and politics, he creates a poppet of a popcorn movie without having to apologise for taking necessary liberties.
Kevin Dillon takes on the rebellious role that made Steve McQueen a star and his partner in slime is Shawnee Smith. Together they battle a growing gelatinous glob viscously vacuuming through the population of a warm-weather blighted ski resort, before icing it Rambo-style on the main street. The bubbling pink plasma still
arrives on earth via meteor but the main switch on the 1958 version is it‘s really a NASA satellite with an experimental germ warfare virus on board.
Whether oozing along ceilings or yanking victims down waste disposal units, the absorbing amoeba’s new state of the art agility carries high level shock impact. Russell clearly wanted to do more than just remake an old favourite adding outlandish broadstrokes to the ‘monster on the loose“ formula while managing to keep a strong linger on the pulse of the original, is his major achievement.
Nowhere is this better shown than in the fun re-creation of the classic cinema attack— a strobe-lit nightmare of chills, thrills and easily digested black humour. By realising what virtues to retain and what to upgrade, Russell has allowed the amorphous alien's versatile charms to shine through for contemporary audiences. (Allen Jones)
Wolfgang Amadeus something. .. lidinburgh: (‘ameo.
I Au Revoir Les Enlants ( P( i) ( Louis Malle. France W. (iermany. I987) (iaspard Manesse. Raphael Fejito. Philippe Morier-(ienoud. 113 mins. Low-key. cinema-verite inﬂuenced screen portrayal of autobiographical incidents from Malle's boyhood. Set duringthe (ierman occupation. the film follows the developing friendship between two boys at a small provincial school run by monks. one of whose closely~guarded Jewish identity is to prove dangerous to both boys as the Nazi presence loomsalarmingly close.
Simple. subtle. and very moving film. which avoids the cliches ofthe coming-of-age genre. and makes itslarger political points firmly but unobtrusively. (ilasgow: (il’l‘.
I Barfly ( l8) (Barbet Schroeder. LS. 1987) Mickey Rourke. Faye Dunaway. Alice Krige. 99mins. Bar-room bum Rourke finds artistic inspiration in the demon drink. but his discovery by a prestigious literary magazine and the temptations of wealth it offers is to threaten his relationship with fellow alcoholic Dunaway.
('alculating exercise in existentialisrn based on the autobiogaphical writingsof cult author (‘harles Bukowski. here energetically impersonated by a game Mickey Rourke. Iidinburgh: Edinburgh University Film Society.
I Beaches ( 15) 3’: (Gary Marshall. US. 1988) Bette Midler. Barbara Hershey. John Heard. Spalding (iray. 124 mins. ()n a hot summer day on an Atlantic (‘ity beach in 1957 a most remarkable and unlikely amity is formed. The two friends are eleven-year-old girls from totally
sumptuous soundtrack by someone called I different backgrounds. (‘.(‘.Bloom
(Middler) is a brash young New Yorkeron her way to stardom as a singing star. while Hillary ( l Iershey) is a proper young lady from San Francisco. The film chartstheir future lives from that fateful meeting as they build a unique friendship that sustains them through the difficult years ahead. (ilasgow: ()deon. lidinburgh: ()deon.
I Beetleiuice ( 15) (Tim Burton. L's. was) (leena Davis. Alec Baldwin. Michael Keaton. 92 mins. Recently deceased. and very charming New Iingland couple. the Maitlands. have difficulty in adjusting to the afterlife. Not the least of their worries is the tasteless refurbishment of theirold home by a nasty New York yuppie family. and they eventually call on freelance bio-exorcist Betelgeuse (pronounced ‘Beetle-juice') to deal with the problem in his own inimitable fashion.
Iixuberantly eccentric eartoonish capers. a movie that creates its own comic cosmos where the unexpected is the norm. (ireat fun it all is too. Edinburgh: Cameo. I Betrayed ( 15) ((‘osta-(iavras. LS. 1988) Debra Winger. Tom Berenger. John Heard. 127 mins. Winger isan FBI agent investigating Midwestern farmer Berenger. who at first seems such a nice guy that the two fall in love. but whomshe later discovers to be an extreme right wing fanatic organising covert guerilla activity in the cause of white supremacy. While she needs to gather enough evidence for a murder conviction. she grows increasingly fearful that her true identity will be revealed.
(‘ompromised attempt at fusing I lollywood narrative entertainment with forthright political content. because the ideological credibility of the material is badly undermined by implausible plotting. (ilasgow: ()deon. Iidinburgh:
I The Big Blue ( l5) it: (Luc Besson. Fr. 1988) Rosanna Arquette. Jean-Marc Barr.Jean Reno. Paul Shenar. lZflmins. Barr and Reno. who go deep diving without the precaution of oxygen tanks. have been friends and rivals since they were kids. Ms Arquette encounters the former in Peru and is captivated by his wide-eyed innocence which others. knowing his hobby. take to be a sign of bovine stupidity. She spends the rest ofthe film trying to convince the audience that there is nothing odd going on between Reno and Barr. A film that turnsout like its hero: very pretty but very silly. (ilasgow: (‘annon Sauchiehall Street.
I Bird ( l5) ((‘lint Eastwood. US. 1988) Forrest Whitaker. Diane Venora. Samuel F. Wright. Michael Zelinker. 161 mins. Iiastwood‘s labour of love manages effortlessly to blast away our misgivings about any Hollywood messing around with jazz. for this is a brave and moving attempt to bring to the screen some ofthe complexities of(‘harlie 'Yardbird' Parker. whose improvisational developments on the alto saxophone mark him down asone of the century ‘s most significant musical presences.
The skilled patchwork narrative combines with an excellent cast. among whom Forrest Whitaker's range of emotional expression in the title role must go down as a major achievement. and an evocative shadowy vision of the jazz underworld from cameraman Jack N.(ireen to create not just a milestone in the cinema‘s attempts to deal with the music scene. but a sombre. engrossing account that could well go down as one of the great screen biographies. lidinburgh: ('ameo.
I Birdy (Alan Parker. I'S. 1984) Matthew Modine. Nicholas(‘age. 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 (‘age 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. (ilasgow; (il’l‘.
IThe Blob ( l8) 1’? ((‘huck Russsell. IIS. 1989) Kevin Dillon. Shawnee Smith. 95 mins. See panel. (ilasgow: (‘annon The Forge. ('annon Sauchiehall Street. (‘entralz Cannon. Strathclyde: ('annon. l.a Scala.
I Blue Velvet ( l8) ( David Lynch. IS. 1986) Kyle Macl.achlan. Dennis Hopper. Isabella Rossellini. l2fl mins. Lumberton. r‘niddlc-x‘smerica. W'ould-bc boy detective Jeffrey Beaumont finds a severed car on some waste ground and when the police shoo him away he decides to dosome investigating of hisow n.
A singular fusion of the cosy and the terrifying which blends kitsch and nightmare. B-movie detection and brutal sexual perversion to deconstruct our complacent vision of what passes for normal society. This is filrnmaking of remarkable imagination and skill that
places its director in the front rank of contemporary American cinema. (ilasgow: (il’l'.
I Cameron's Closet ( 18) (Armand Mastroianni. ITS I988) Tab Hunter. Mel Harris. (‘otter Smith. 87 mins. Cameron. an ordinary but lonely 10-year-old boy. plays quietly in his cupboard inventinga demonic murderer who subsequently wreaks havoc on those around him. ()bviously he's at that difficult age. Fventually only he can deal with this irnaginery fiend from the closet. Iidinburgh: Cannon.
I Choose Me ( IS) (A.Rudolf. US. 1988). 106 mins. 'I‘wo lonely people in LA. become a couple. Iiven for those not irked by the director‘s style and interests this is an entertainment that tends to go round in circles and get nowhere — other than Las
22The List 19 May— 1 June 1989