Stefan Sa

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Scotland in the 1970s, and young Bess marries Scandinavian oil rig worker .lan, much to the disapproval of her Calvinist community. When he is away from home, she is distraught and prays for his return; so when he is severely paralysed in an accident, the combination of love and religious fervour push her further towards ultimate sacrifice. Convinced that only a miracle can save Jan, she makes a pact with God and gives herself to other men only to find herself cast out of her church and spurned by her family.

Melodrama is a much mocked genre, but director Lars von Trier approaches it with such honesty and commitment

“‘1‘... >_‘ ",ggéfizfi..- far; \ A g .g ' Emlly Watson on Breaking The Waves that the audience cannot help but be overwhelmed by the film’s emotional impact. This is quite simply one of the most moving films ever made: its unforgettable ending so perfectly captures a sense of sublime joy and transcendence over suffering that tears are sure to flow.

The acting is excellent, with London- born actress Emily Watson an absolute revelation. She makes Bess’s naivety a believable hy-product of a sheltered upbringing, and invests such feeling in her character’s dedication to her husband that the very traits for which she is damned by her community become, in the audience’s eyes, the noble virtues of a true heroine. Breaking The Waves touches the viewer deep inside like only great cinema can. (Alan Morrison)

Breaking The Waves, Dominion, 16 Aug, 9. 30pm; Filmhouse, 23 Aug, 8pm,




.After the hard-hitting Maori drama Once Were Warriors, New Zealand director Lee Tamahori lands in Hollywood with an almighty thud. This 505 LA policier looks to have so much going for it, with a top-notch cast (llick llolte, Melanie Griffith, Michael Madsen, John Malkovich et al), superior technical credits (llaskell Wexler’s lustrous camerawork, classy design by Richard Sylbert) and interesting subject matter (the LAPD’s crack ‘llat Squad’ on a murder case brush with the military atomic test programme). What happens though, is that Pete Dexter’s amorphous screenplay fails to knock it into any

Penn, Palmlnterl, Madsan anllol get ahead In Mulholland Falls



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real dramatic shape, while Tamahori’s handling is so tentative as to be utterly anonymous.

Although llolte’s determined cop plods through it doggedly enough, not giving his cohorts Messrs Madsen, Palminteri and (Chris) Penn anything much to do is a serious miscalculation, if not quite as ill- judged as Malkovich’s mannered turn as an enigmatic general. Griffith has to make do with the long-suffering spouse routine, and poor Jennifer Connelly’s Amazonian form is-treated as just so much wallpaper. Certainly there’s rich potential in mining the City of Angels’ murky past, but another Chinatown it ain’t. (Trevor Johnston)

Mulholland Falls, (if T, 16 Aug, 8pm; Cameo, 17 Aug, 9.30pm; Filmhouse, 24 Aug, 6pm, £6 (£4).

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I Truth 0r Dare. (il-‘l‘. 22 -\ug_'. 3pm. Ur (£4).


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I The Arena 0f Murder

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It‘s time to get up and get your future rolling.

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The List l(r-22 Aug l996 75