I The Accidental Tourist ( 15) (Lawrence Kasdan, US, 1988) William Hurt, Geena Davis. Kathleen Turner, Amy Wright. 121 mins. Macon Leary (Hurt) isa successful writer of mollycoddling travel guides, but his placid home life is disturbed when his wife (Turner) walks out on him. Left to his own devices. he soon finds himself falling for kooky dog trainer Muriel (Davis), and as he becomes increasingly 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. Hurt’s impressive performance is at the centre of the film‘s quiet domestic strengths and its absorbing depiction of everyday Baltimore lives. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. I The African Queen (PG) (John Huston. UK, 1951) Humphrey Bogart, Katharine Hepburn, Robert Morley. 105 mins. Splendid WWI adventure has the marvellous pairing of grizzled Bogey and spinsterish Hepburn as they make their way up the Congo fighting swamps. the Hun, and each other to quite thrilling effect. Great character interplay courtesy of film critic James Agee‘s gritty dialogue. Edinburgh: Film Guild. IAlice (15) (Jan Svankmajcr, Switzerland, 1988) 84 mins. Radical new version of the Lewis Carroll classic by brilliant Czech filmmakerJan Svankmajer, which has the protagonist as the only live action character making her way through an adventure in a harsh dreamscape vividly conveyed through puppet animation and trick photography. Far from the Disney cartoon, the atmosphere here is derived from the cruel world of childlike fantasies, a tone whose dark perversity will be familiar to those who have sampled any of the Alchemists ofThe Surreal series ofprogrammes. Recommended viewing. but definitely not for young children. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. I Back to the Future (PG) (Robert Zemeckis. US, 1985) Michael J. Fox, Lea Thompson, Crispin Glover. 116 mins. Deservedly popular time-travelling fantasy adventure with street-smart 80s teenager whisked back in time for a little chicanery with his future parents. Glasgow: Cannon Clarkston Road. I Batman (Tim Burton. US. 1989)Jack Nicholson. Michael Keaton. Kim Bassinger. 120 mins. In which Burton achieves the impossible by creating a product which lives up to possibly the biggest hype job this century. Nicholson is on top form: psychotic, witty and zany like you‘ve never seen him before; but the real triumph is Keaton‘s. With less screen time than the Great Upstager, he produces a performance of unforgettable sublety and power, which gives a new credibility to the Bruce Wayne/Batman character. While remaining true to the comic strip. With eerie angular design by Anton Furst, a terrific score by Danny Elfman, asuitably wacky script and a strong supporting cast, this is along movie which you won’t want to end. Glasgow: Cannon The Forge, Cannon Sauchiehall Street. Edinburgh: Cannon, Dominion. Strathclyde: UCI Clydebank 10. I Beaches (15) (Gary Marshall US, 1988) Bette Midler, Barbara Hershey, John Heard, Spalding Gray. 124 mins. Two eleven year old girls meet on a beach in Atlantic City and become lifelong friends despite jealous arguments and diverse lifestyles. C.C. Bloom is a loudmouthed actress/singer bound for stardom (not a
DEAD POETS SOCIETY
it. A) h . I J‘ ’ .‘x‘ . Dead Poets Society (PG) (Peter Weir, US, 1989) Robin Williams, Robert Sean Leonard, Ethan Hawke. 129 mins. Although being sold on the attraction of Robin Williams' freewheeling comic energy, it‘s refreshing to report that he’s ably used as a team player in Peter Weir's evocative and moving academic drama. The year is 1959 and Williams plays inspirational English teacher John Keating whose unconventional methods of instilling a love of literature are shaking things up somewhat for both pupils and staff at a staid, traditional private boys’ school in New England. However, while his classroom antics, caring rather than wacky as he exhorts his boys to
"Carpe Diem' ("Seize the day’), display Williams’ warmly invigorating way with essentially more serious material, the main substance of the film is the examination of how all this affects the cast of teenagers he regularly enthralls.
Movie newcomers Robert Sean Leonard, Ethan Hawke and co, fired up by Keating with a need to enrich their experience, but still constricted by the reserved atmosphere that pervades the school, in emulation of the heroic tutor’s own youth form a secret club called The Dead Poets Society, under whose auspices they regularly conduct clandestine meetings in a cave to explore the worlds of poetry, philosophy, drink, girls and the jazz saxophone. However, events are to take an unexpectedly dark turn when Leonard’s ongoing confrontation with his insensitive parents spirals into tragedy and widespread recriminations.
Australian Weir is here of course returning to the milieu of his earlier Picnic At Hanging Rock, and while the current film lays far more emphasis on
the clarity of the unfolding narrative, he still manages to imbue the school’s surroundings, particularly the boys' midnight jaunts to their hiding place, with a tangible sense of beauty and mystery that is entirely appropriate to the sense of a great journey just beginning that Williams has instilled in them. The ensuing tension between pasion and authority makes for humane, intelligent, and even tearful viewing whose continuing success at the box office is both richly deserved and something to celebrate. (Trevor Johnston)
From Fri 29 Sept: Glasgow: Cannon Clarkston Road, Cannon The Forge, Odeon, Grosvenor. Edinburgh: Odeon. Central: Allanpark, Cannon. Strathclyde: Cannon, Kelburne, Odeon Ayr, Odeon Hamilton, UCI Clydebank 10.
very taxing role for Midler), while Hershey‘s Hilary Whitney is a prim moneyed beauty trying hard to resist conformity. Midler makes good work of the star-vehicle script and 15 ably supported by Hershey. But make no mistake. this overlong female buddy movie is the schmalziest tearjerker you‘ll see in a while. Glasgow: Odeon.
I Betty Blue ( 18) (Jean-Jacques Beineix, France, 1986) Jean HughesAnglade. Beatrice Dalle. 121) mins. Tempestuous love gone mad as an older handyman and a free-spirited woman embark on a passionate, peripatetic fling that ends in tragedy. Filmed with a dazzling technique and an irritating emptiness by the maker of Diva. Glasgow: Grosvenor. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Film Society.
I Black Orpheus (18) (Marcel Camus, France/Portugal. 1959) Breno Mello, Marpessa Dawn, Lea Garcia. 98 mins. An Oscar winner as the best Foreign Film of its year, this is an imaginative, poetic updating of the legend of Orpheus and Eurydice in which a streetcar conductor and a country girl fall in love duringthe Rio de Janeiro carnival. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
I The Blues Brothers (15) (John Landis. US, 1980) John Belushi. Dan Aykroyd. Carrie Fisher. 130 mins. Bloated,
ove rlong anarchic Chicago comedy with the two stars on a mission from God to salvage the imperilled fortunes ofan orphanage. Lots of guest stars. musical numbers and automotive destruction in a typical product of over-emphatic
contemporary American humour. Glasgow: Grosvenor.
I Body Heat ( 18) (Lawrence Kasdan, US, 1981 ) William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Richard Crenna. 116 mins. Hurt has the hots for Turner so her hubby Crenna is set for an early grave and the insurance company for a big pay-out. Splendid update of Double Indemnity with a drenchingly sweaty atmosphere (the sex has a lot to do with it) and a script that leaves teethmarks. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Film Society. I Bremer Freheit (18) (Rainer Werner Fassbinder. W. Germany. 1972) Margit Carstensen, Uli Lommel, Hanna Schygulla. 87 mins. The mid-nineteenth century. undervalued housewife Carstensen decides to change her plight by poisoning her entire family. Early Fasbinder examination of the nature of domestic oppression and the heavy price to be paid for liberation. Edinburgh: Film Guild. I Bringing Up Baby (PG) (Howard Hawks, US, 1938) Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, Charles Ruggles. 102 mins. Hepburn the madcap heiress, Grant a shy zoologist, and Baby the pet leopard are the basic ingredients for this definitive screwball comedy, which zaps along at what can honestly be described as a laff-a-minute pace. That man Hawks could direct anything. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Film Society. I City of Pirates ( 18) (Raul Ruiz, France, 1983) Hughes Quester, Anne Alvaro, Melvil Poupaud. 121 mins. Typically surreal Ruiz farrago is set on a barren
island and follows the actions of a schizophrenic pirate , a dreamy young woman and a murderous child. Bizarre images abound from the man who pioneered the use of the subjective camera shot from inside the mouth. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
I Cookie (PG) ﬁ (Susan Seidelman. US. 1989) Emily Lloyd, Peter Falk, Diane Wiest. 93 mins. Fresh out of prison mafia don Dino Capisco (Peter Falk) finds his faithful mistress Lenore (Diane West) waiting for him, but doesn't bargain on the antagonism of his daughter Cookie (Emily Lloyd). However, as he finds his footing once more in the ruthless financial wheeling and dealing of the organised crime underworld, the parental relationship soon grows warmer as Cookie proves herself an adept driver and an even more expert schemer.
Given Seildelman‘s previous success with Desperately Seeking Susan, it‘s perhaps no surprise that Lloyd‘s role and indeed much of her wardrobe seem designed to fit a younger Madonna. but despite brave efforts on the accent front
our Em doesn‘t quite have the spunk of La Ciccione. For the rest able characrter acting abounds but a grindingly predictable narrative and too little real charm makes for our rather half-hearted involvement. Glasgow: Odeon. Edinburgh: Odeon. Strathclyde: I Cousins (15) (Joel Schumacher. US, 1989) Ted Danson, Isabella Rossellini. Sean Young, William Peterson. 113 mins. Glossy Hollywood remake of the light French satire Cousin, Cousine has Danson (of Cheers and 3 Men And Baby fame) and Rossellini making warm. sensitive work of the central characters in a love/lust tangle which begins at a family wedding. But despite strong casting, scripting and photography, the result is too hollow to fulfil its potential. Central: Allanpark, Caledonian. I Crossing Delancey (PG) (Joan Micklin Silver, US, 1988) Amy Irving. Peter Riegert, Jeroen Krabbe. 96 mins. Career woman Izzy (Irving) is happily single in New York, when her grandmomma decides to take the matter of marriage in hand, and hires Hannah the matchmaker to get her hitched. The proposed match of pickle vendor Sam (Reigert) does not at 'first appeal, but gradually hearts melt, and the film moves to a romantic conclusion which sidesteps schmaltz at every turn, and wins through delightfully through strong scripting and sympathetic performances. A must for incurable romantics. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. I Danny The Champion 0fThe World (U) (Gavin Millar, UK, 1989) Jeremy Irons, Robbie Coltrane, Cyril Cusack, Samuel Irons. 97 mins. Roald Dahl’s story of corrupt property baron and pheasant-slayer Victor Hazell (Coltrane) given his come-uppance by resourceful nine-year old Danny becomes a family movie in more ways than one. Gavin Millar, whose past work includes Dennis Potter‘s disturbing Lewis Carroll piece Dreamchild, has gone for wholesome entertainment this time, and cast father and son as father and son in the central roles, with young Sam's grandpa Cusack as the avuncular Doc Spencer. Charming and warmhearted, with enough subtlety to keep the grown-ups amused. Strathclyde: Odeon Ayr, Odeon Hamilton. I Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid (PG) (Carl Reiner, US, 1982) Steve Martin, Rachel Ward and a cast of revived luminaries. 87 mins. Film noir spoof has private eye Martin involved with femme fatale Ward and fiendish Nazi scientist Reiner. Much of the humour stems from the intercutting with actual Forties movies in a device now copied by the adverts for a certain lager. Edinburgh: Cameo. I Dead Poets Society (PG) 1‘: (Peter Weir. US. 1989) Robin Williams, Robert Sean Leonard. Ethan Hawke. 129 mins. See review. Glasgow: Cannon Clarkston
The List 29 September - 12 October 1989 21