I leon (I8) (Luc Besson. France. I994) Jean Reno. Natltalie Portman. Gary Oldman. l IO mitts. Wlten ltis neighbour's fantin is wiped out by crooked cops on a bungled drugs btrst. ice cool hitntart Leon ﬁnds himself looking after the sole survivor - twelve-year-old Mathilde. l.uc Besson's ﬁrst filtn in English is. nevertheless. a French ﬁlrtt in terms of style. editing artd its boldness in story and theme. It's good to see that the director has firtally got over the all-style-no- content obstacle. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
I letter Front an Unknown Woman ( t 5) (Max Ophtrls. (’8. I948) Joan Fontaine. Louis Jourdan. Mady Christians. Art Smith. 90mins. Superny wrought tale of doomed love between concert pianist Jourdan and infatuated former girl-next-door‘ Fontaine. whose brief. disastrous yet inevitable trrtion is explored itt awesomely profound artd painful detail. A masterpiece of early psychological film-making. Glasgow:
I The life and Death of Colonel Blimp (U) (Michael Powell & Emeric l’r‘essburger. UK. I943) Roger Livesey. Deborah Kerr. Anton Walbrook. I63 mins. One of the great British films. an ecstatic. uplifting celebration and. paradoxically. critique of the essence of Britishness. Outwitted through ‘cheating' in a I942 Home Guard exercise. General Clive Wynne-Candy reflects on his life. military career and love of a special woman. concluding that his gentlernanly notions of ‘fair play' have become outmoded. Magniﬁcent. Edinburgh: Canteo. I lone Star (l5) (John Sayles. US. I996) Chris Cooper. Elizabeth Pena. Kris Kristofferson. I35 mins. When a modern-day Texan sheriff investigates a decades-old murder. past clashes with present artd local rnythologies have to be re-examined. Saylcs's various sub-plots don‘t distract frortt each other: in fact. they re-inforce and counterpoint. btrilding a complex social. historical and political backdrop to the rivetting thriller on the surface. Another masterpiece from America‘s greatest independent director. Edinburgh: Cameo. I The long Kiss Goodnight ( 18) (Renrty llarlin. US. I996) Geena Davis. Samuel L. Jackson. Craig ~Bierko. l20 mins. Suburban schoolteacher and amnesiac Davis suddenly discovers that. iii the past. she was a top CIA assassin and. with private detective Jackson irt tow. avoids a ltost of professional killers and foils a genocide plot. It's action all the way artd logic out the window as director (artd the star's husband) I‘Iarlin delivers spectacular stunts while Shane Black's script contains inspired banter. Pure escapism. General release. I Madame Wang's (18) (Paul Mort‘issey. US. l98l ) After his time with Andy Warhol. Paul Morrissey did some interesting and generally ftrnny work in the American independent sector. This ﬁlm from the early 80s tells of a European sailor-spy who comes to California to prepare for Soviet invasion. bttt is confounded by the West Coast oddballs he meets. Glasgow: (if-T. I The Modules: M King George (PG) (Nicholas llytner. UK. I994) Nigel Hawthorne. llelen Mirt‘en. Rupert Everett. IIO rttins. Alan Bennett‘s adaption of his own stage play is a great British ﬁlm in its own rigltt with no lingering sense of theatricality. Nigel Hawthorne's excellent portrayal of the King. his demented behaviour threatening the stability of the nation. gives the ﬁlm an emotional core. while the script's themes are intelligently handled throughout. Edinburgh: Cameo. I III M The Year (l8) (Dirk Shafer. US. I995) 87 rttins. Playgirl magazine's I992 ‘Centrefold Of The Year‘. Dirk Shafcr turns the camera on himself for a mock-doc look at his true-life experiences. Pushed into the media as ‘the ideal man for all women‘. he was in fact living with his male lover and claims to have no idea what women want at all. A comic examination of deception and media manipulation. Glasgow: GFI'. I than ( I5) (Woody Allen. US. I979) Woody Allen. Diane Keaton. Mariel Hemingway. 96 mins. Woody wanders through the female jungle of New York in search of a perfect soulrnate after the demise of his maniage. Sublime contic delight with a soulful Gershwin score. Edinburgh: Cameo. I Matilda (PG) (Danny De Vito. US. I996) Mara Wilson. Danny De Vito. Embeth Davidtz. 98 mins. Capturing the delicious wickedness of Roald Dahl's writing. director De Vito fully exploits exaggeration and playful camera work to tell the tale of a gifted child who uses her super brain to outwit her neglectful parents. Offsetting the lovable Matilda against a series of horriny inﬂated bad characters. the ﬁlm's empowering message for children will appeal to the mischevious kid in everyone. See preview and review. General release. I m III M Miller (I8) (Robert Altman. US. I97I)War1en Beatty. Julie Christie. I2l mins. Ultra-realistic. downbeat westem yarn that eschews the traditional approach of glarnourising the era. Beatty is in good form as a hustling. two-bit braggart who opens a brothel in a tum-
of—the-century boom towrt. Edinburgh: Cameo. I Michael Collins I IS) (Neil Jordan. US. I996) Liam Necson. Julia Roberts. Alan Rickman. I32 mins. Winner of the Best Film and Best Actor awards at the Venice Film Festival and the cause of knee-jerk criticism from the right-wing press. Jordan's stirring historical epic is an honest portrayal of a ragged artd bloody conflict between the British imperial power and idealistic lrislt Nationalists early this century. The action is well handled. the char'acter'isations strong and the brtrtality on both sides is never glossed over. General release.
I A Midsummer Night’s Dream (PG) (Adrian Noble. UK. I996) Lyndsay [)uncan. Desmond Barrit. Alex Jennings. l()5 mins. The most fantastical of Shakespeare's comedies. it offers endless scope for cinematic imagery. RSC director Noble introduces art additional character rrtto this rttost fantastical of Shakespeare's corttedies. expressing the dream through the eyes of a young boy (()sheen Jones). llow ever. his unease with the camera is evident. and any cinematic impact is spoilt through use of rttirtirttalist wooden stage sets. a static pace artd disappointing performances. See review. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
I Mighty Aphrodite ( l5) (Woody Allen. US. I995) Woody Allen. Ilelena Bonltam Carter. Mira Sorvirto. 9S ntirts. Sports writer Lenny (Allen) and his busy art dealer wife (Bonham Carter) adopt a baby. btrt when the kid starts to show unusually high intelligence. dad goes searcltirtg for the real mother - a norte-ttm-bright hooker artd porn actress (Sorvirto). ()scar- winning Sorvirto is the best thing irt the movie. even if her character is rather dubious. btrt Woody's a bit too lortg iii the tooth for his part. Edinburgh: Cameo.
I Monty Python’s life or Brian ( t5) (Terry Jones. (K. I979) Graham Chapman. Terry Jones. John Cleese. Michael l’alin. Eric Idle. 93 rttirts. The Gospel According to Monty Python offended a wltole Itost of religions dorrtinations upon its initial release. which rather obscured the fact that behind the controversy lay their most sustairted humour to date. A ltost of very ftrrtny setpieces artd smart cartteos front all the teartt climaxes iii a rather fetching musical crucifixion. Edinburgh: Cameo.
I The Most Desired Man [m Ifi'tt'i'gh' .t/mm
( l 8) (Sonke \k'ortmann. Germany. I995) Til Schweiger. Katja Riemann. Joachim Krol. 98 rttins. The rrtost successful homegrown Gerrttart movie at the time of its release. with more laughs than the country's usual comic output. A woman sends her pltilandering husband packing. btrt becomes even more suspicious when she discovers his new male ﬁatmate naked irt his wardrobe. The crass final reel ruins any sense of subversion. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
I Mr Reliable ( l5) (Nadia Tass. Australia. I996) ('olin l‘r'iels. Jacqueline McKenzie. I’atrl Sortkkila., I I3 rttirts. Based on a true story that had the Australian rtation gripped to their television screens. Tass‘s offbeat artd upbeat rrtovie is another success front Down l'nder. Dtrrirtg the I968 Summer of Love. petty criminal Wally Mellish's home is under siege: only irt Australia could a situation teetering on tragedy end in wedding bells. A marvelloust liver character piece that captures the anarchic spirit of the country. Glasgow: GET.
I Halted (l8) (Mike Leigh. UK. I993) David Thewlis. Katrin (‘artlidge. Lesley Sharp. I26 rrtins. Johnny. a cynical drifter. wartders arotrnd the homeless of Londort spouting a bitter philosophy. Art episodic. bleak. btrt bitineg ftrrtny portrait of 90s Britain that suffers from a few characters who could only exist in a Mike Leigh world. Scenes of sexual violence may be difﬁcult for some audience members to sit through. bttt the virttrOso performance from Tltewlis is a stunner. Edinburgh: Cameo.
I Nelly Et M. Arnaud ( l5) (Claude Sautet. France. I994) Iimrttanuelle Bear't. Michel Serrault. Jean-Hughes Anglade. IOS mins. Sautet's first film after Un (‘oeur [in Hft'r‘l’ is another delicate yet complex study of human relationships. A woman in her twenties. unlucky irt love. meets a retired magistrate and friendship blossoms when she takes a job helping him write his memoirs. Edinburgh: Cameo.
I New York. New York ( I5) (Martin Scorsese. US. I977) Liza Minnelli. Robert De Niro. Lionel Stander. l53 mins. Winning combination of satirical parody and heartfelt tribute. as Scorsese tries his hand at big-budget musical comedy. The two stars are outstanding as a warring couple. De Niro's downbeat jazz saxophinist perfectly counterpoising Minnelli's struggling singer Edinburgh: Filrnhouse.
I Nico-Icon ( l5) (Susanne Ofteringer. Germany. I995) Nico. Jackson Browne. John Cale. 72 mins. Ofteringer creates a collage of frank interviews. ﬁlm extracts and music clips to present an absorbing portrait of the underground icon from her early days as a model through the Warhol period to the drugs decline. Music featured includes tracks by The Velvet Underground and Nico herself. Glasgow: OFT.
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The List l3 Dec I996-9 Jan I997 37