I Went Down
One glimpse at that title and all manner of thoughts will enter your head. Indeed, all possible double and triple meanings are explored in this superb
Irish gangster-buddy-road movie.
Directed by Paddy Breathnach and scripted by young playwright Conor McPherson, the tale has Git Hynes (Peter McDonald) and Bunny Kelly (Brendan Gleeson) as the last word in odd couples. Git is just out of chokey, incarcerated for a crime he didn't commit. and looking for a clean break, when misfortune leads him to owe the local mob a favour. Assigned to help the splendidly sideburned, lacquered and cowboy-novel consuming Bunny they set out to track down an ‘associate' of the head hood. Hardly surprisingly, nothing goes to plan with cupboards revealing all manner of skeletons as the plot careers towards a Miller’s Cmssing-esque denouement.
The beauty of the film is in the interplay between the two central characters and the odd surreal moment. such as a crook trussed up in bed unable to change the channel from The Theory Of Algebra. And what a soundtrack — highlights are gems from disgacefully ignored cult Irish bands The High Llamas and Revelino. A find and a half. (Brian Donaldson)
I / Went Down, Cameo 1, Thu 21, 70.30pm; Cameo 1, Sat23, 3pm, £6 (£4).
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A four-hour cinematic journey through Amsterdam by road and canal, by air and on foot, With little chance to catch yOur breath or explore the sights — but this is no tourist guide. It’s an intimate portrait of a multi-cultural community by director Johan van der Keuken, whose wandering camera reveals a surprismgly varied selection of political refugees. However, the personal histories take careful exploration and
seem at odds wrtli the Zippy cityscapes,
suggesting two films vying for attention and deserving indiVidual
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74 THE LIST 22—28 Aug i997
focus but diVIding the lows. The results become as tiring to the eyes as the constant travelling would be to the feet. (Paul Smith)
I Amsterdam Global Village, Cameo 3, Fri 22, 2pm, £6 (£4).
East Palace, West Palace ****
A—Lan is a gay writer who's held for interrogation by a policeman after crUising at the toilets in Tiananmen Square As the night progresses, A-Lan confronts his tormentor's relentless questioning and intimidation as well as his own memories of childhood and
“Intelligent, subtle and sometimes quite startlingly imaginative . . . beautifully acted” i...“
“Rarely (lo films come along that are this rich and complete.”
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sadistic experiences. A love stOry that is both startling and dramatic, Zhang Yuan’s film combines poetic beauty in its images with the complex psychology of its two protagonists. Control, manipulation and role-playing are revealed with an emotional honesty that echoes the way contemporaries like Zhang Yimou tackle issues of individual identity in China. Disturbing but profoundly liberating. (Paul Smith)
I East Palace, West Palace, Cameo 7, Sat 23, 5.30pm, £6 (£4). The stage version of East Palace, West Palace is at the International Festival, Gateway Theatre, 473 2000, 2 7—23 Aug, 7.30pm, £ 72. See 6—8pm timeband section.
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Front line America, where chalk and guns mix to violent — often lethal — effect, is the chosen position for science teacher Trevor Garfield (Samuel L. Jackson). After being stabbed for failing a student, he relocates to LA to work as a substitute teacher, where he is drawn into the macho world of gangs, guns and bravado. This is one angry movie that lands its punches hard with a plot that has some amazing moral twists — and a downright tacky ending. A wicked soundtrack, featuring Massive Attack amongst others, is effectively used to pace the action and director Kevin Reynolds has extracted some class performances from his actors. (Thom Dibdin)
I 787, ABC 2, Fri 22, 6.30pm, £6 (£4).
Last year, Devil’s Island appeared at Edinburgh as a work-in-progress; this year, the complete film returns and confirms Fridrik Thor Fridriksson’s growing stature in world Cinema. His last film, Cold Fever, had at its centre a Culture clash between a y0ung Japanese man and the Icelandic
STAR RATINGS ii i t * * Unmissable ir * i * Very 00d 1: t * Wort seeing * tr Below average it You've been warned
Listings for all cinemas in Glasgow, Edinburgh and the rest of Central Scotland can be found on pages 102-105. For reviews of new film releases outwith the Film Festival,
see pages 98-99.
eccentrics he found himself among. Here the nations rubbing together are Iceland and America, with the States defined by their cultural dominance (clothes, music, cars) and physical absence (the film plays out on an abandoned US Army base near Reykjavic). Personal stories are woven through the ensemble drama as a collection of poverty-stricken families struggle with life in the 50s, and a slow-burning sympathy emerges for certain individuals. The look and tone of the film are in perfect harmony: Fridriksson uses sombre colours to complement his sullen cast of characters. (Alan Morrison)
I Devil's Island, Fi/mhouse 7, Fri 22, 4.30pm; Cameo 3, Sat23, 7.30pm, £6 (£4).
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Filmed in contemporary Sarajevo, this lyrical and distressing drama employs the high production standards Western cinema audiences take for granted. This is a phenomenal achievement, considering it was made in a war zone with the cast and crew accompanied by UN anti-sniper and de-mining units. The experiences of two orphan boys, a disillusioned poet and a crippled dog illustrate the desperation and optimistic spirit of the city's inhabitants. Though Sarajevo is no longer prime time news, Perfect Circle reminds us the war is not over and provides insight into life during wartime more thoroughly than any news coverage. (Miles Fielder)
I Perfect Circle, Cameo 7, Thu 27, 3pm; Cameo 3, Sat 23, 4pm, £6 (£4).
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From Friday 24th August Cameo, Edinbh