Acts Of Love (18) 104 mins 7% t x:

As a lame, middle-aged schoolteacher whose life is reawakened by a fling with a 17-year—old pupil, the excellent Dennis Hopper shows a Side to his acting talents not seen recently in his trademark psychos and villains Towards the end of the drama, when the affair is outed, the film sensiny avoids Fatal Attraction or Lolita cliches, and shows maturity of thought in the way it deals with the consequences of Hopper’s actions not only on the passionate couple, but everyone else around them. (First Independent)

Tin Cup

(15) 130 mins * *1: 1%

Kevin Costner has his best role in ages as a professional golfer whose attempts to claw back credibility are linked with his desires for psychologist Rene Russo. In the past, director Ron Shelton has proved he's more than capable at handling comedy-dramas with a sporting theme -- Bull Durham, White Men Can’t Jump and he manages to deliver something that’s funnier, more complex and more insightful than the typical Hollywood product. A hole-in-one rather than a shot into the rough. (Warner)


A Bridge Too Far

(15) 170 mins a

Richard Attenborough assembles a never-to-be—repeated cast in order to storm strategic bridges in Holland, but his approach is so old-fashioned and stiff-upper-lipped that it's more likely to bore the enemy into submission. Too little action, too much pomting at maps. Burt Lancaster's also a bit fond of overdoing the map-watching in Go Tell The Spartans (1 5, *- "'), which sets its action in the early days of the Vietnam War. As the film progresses, American naivety becomes cynicism, but the field adventures have been more conVincingly rendered since.

video reviews


Courage Under Fire (15)111mins 1: at Mt

Denzel Washington gives a complex, career-best performance as an army officer assessing the suitability of a posthumous medal for helicopter pilot Meg Ryan while struggling With his own guilt over a Gulf War friendly fire incident. We’re given several eye- Witness testimonies to the key event, with perspectives differing each time and little clues building like in a . detective stOry; but it’s Washingon who takes the film to a higher, more rewarding and emotional level.

(Fox Guild)

Antonia's Line

(15) 104 mins + a s is tr

Marleen Gorris’s Oscar winner (and few female directors can claim that feat) has a wonderful sense of community, making it clear that women form the backbone of any successful society. The small Dutch town depicted over generations has perhaps more than its fair share of eccentrics, tragedies and joys, but these are the essence of life. This is storytelling at its best, filled with absorbing characters who all have rich lives even if they have no dialogue. Here the women make clear, independent decisions about who to love and even when to die and the world is a stronger place for it. (GUild Pathe, also retail at £15.99)


(15) 91 mins

A rlark, handsome stranger obsesses With finding Ms Right, to the extent that he’ll murder those who aren't up to standard But let's face it: Zach Galligan (from Gremlins) is about as threatening as Postman Pat. An unwatchable piece of video Crap that plays the scenario so straight, it shoots its arrow through the foot rather than the heart. (First Independenb


ty decisions: Eddie Murphy loads on the latex in dual personality comedy The Nutty Professor (12, CIC, rental, *1”)

26 THE lIST 4—l7Apr 1997


Dead Man (18)115 mins s. a «r at at

Walking wounded: Johnny Depp in Dead Man

In Jim Jarmusch's existentialist Western. Johnny Depp plays William Blake - not the poet, but an accountant from Cleveland who arrives at the brutal, alien frontier's edge, only to discover that the job he expected is already taken. Circumstances cause him to kill the son of powerful businessman Robert Mitchum and, with a bullet in his heart sounding his own

inescapable death knell, Blake flees from a trio of bounty hunters with only

an earthy Native American called Nobody acting as his conscience, teacher

and friend.

Jarmusch deflates the pretentiousness of his film with bizarre humour and

unexpected violence. Robby Miiller's gorgeous black-and-white photography captures the changing landscapes of a wilder America, while Neil Young's jagged guitar score adds fractured texture to these smooth visuals. As the film fades to black after each short scene, it's almost as if we are slipping in and out of consciousness with the main character, catching glimpses of surreal encounters that therefore have no need for logical


ls Blake's journey a metaphor for a man learning how to live? Or how to die? Or, if mortality hangs over us from the moment of birth, are they one and the same thing? The loose, hypnotic quality of the film allows for several open interpretations, while Depp‘s performance takes Blake from empty vessel to purposeful individual whose identity has been decided by

his surroundings. (Alan Morrison)

f" Dead Man is available to rent from Mon 7 Apr.

Even at the time of its release, it was dwarfed by the scOpe of The Deerhunter and Apocalypse Now. (Warner £5.99 each)

Small Faces

(15) 104 mins w *

Gillies Mackinnon slips back into his childhood for a tit hly atmospheric story of the gangs who blackened Glasgow's reputation in the late 60s It’s not the Violence, however, that sticks in the mind, but the warmth the director brings to his depiction of family life With a painter's eye, he fills

_ the grey stone world with splashes of ' colour A very fine addition to

Scotland’s growing :ineina heritage (Gtiild Pathele 99)

, The Brood

(18) 91 mins ~‘

In his scariest (and perhaps most mysogynistic) mowe, David Cronenberg again examines rebellion of the body as his characters undergo controversial psychotherapy to allow their abstract inner rages to take on physical, fleshy form If you thought the cloaked dwarf killer in Don’t Look Now was a shocker, then brace y0urself for the family of deformed Child murderers wrecking havoc here Also out this month is Scanners (18, 103 mins, s l, in which Cronenberg’s battle between the good and bad of human telepathic potential leads the way for some

unforgettable head exploding scenes that even the strongest painkiller couldn’t cure. (Arrow £7.99 each) Burning Paradise

(18) 100 mins ‘lr it a:

Ringo Lam, director of City Of Fire, tries

; his hand at period martial arts action

i as a group of Shaolin monks are forced

into slavery by an evil warlord. There's

a bit of Fu Manchu, a bit of Indiana Jones, a nod towards spaghetti westerns, plenty of gory fights and at least one showstopper of a duel in the lllIX. If Sam Raimi ever made a kung fu mowe, it would probably lOOk like this Made In Hong Kong £13.99)

The Dirty Dozen

; (15)145 mins + *r 1* ; The ultimate misfit team movie gets beyond glorification of the war genre

by haVing an anti-authority seam run

through the ranks from lowest criminals to officer class. Lee Marvin

shapes up twelve rapists arid murderers for a siiicide mission that’s peppered With tough dialogue and superb acting Given the dirty tricks

i played by the team, director Robert Aldrich c0u|d well be saying that war

l i

draws men down to a level that’s worse than the crimes they were

sentenced for. The same director’s

Attack (15, as * t 1*) maintains his

anti-herOic stance With a fictionalised

take on the Battle of the Bulge. (Warner £5.99 each)