FILM index continued
The Illustrated Man (Jack Smight. US. 1968) Rod Steiger. Robert Drivas. Claire Bloom. 103 mins. Well established as a cult item. this version of the Ray Bradbury story is rather confusing and pretentious. Steiger plays the man with the tattoos which foretell the future. whose story of a witch woman causes a young hitchhiker to fall in love.
Deliberater oblique. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
Imitation of Life (PG) (Douglas Sirk. US. 1959) Lana 'I'urner. Juanita Moore. John Gavin. 124 mins. Sirk's remake of the Claudette Colbert weepie lays on the soapie melodrama as the mothers of two intertwining families struggle to bring up their daughters. Glitzy. glamorous Hollywood wrapped in a pessimistic shroud. Glasgow; Gl’l'.
In And Out (12) (Frank ()2. US. 1997) Kevin Kline. Matt Dillon. Tom Selleck. 91 mins. When an ex-student seemingly ‘outs' him during an ()scar speech. Midwestern teacher Howard Brackett (Kline) has to reassess his life and sexuality —just days before his wedding. A funny. feelgood movie that is aimed squarely at a mainstream audience. In And ()at contains nothing to startle Middle America. Kline turns in a delightful comic performance. General release.
In The Company Of Men (18) (Neil LaBute. US. 1996) Aaron Eckhart. Matt Molloy. Stacy inwards. 97 mins. 'Ihe misanthropy of American commerce is right up there on screen. ﬁfty feet high. as Chad and Howard plan to date the same vulnerable woman and dump her without warning. It's corporate America's strongest- will-survive ethos which is the real target in this powerful independent that's full of sucker punches. See feature and review. Glasgow: GFI‘. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
The Jackal ( 18) (Michael Caton-Jones. US. 1997) Bruce Willis. Richard Gere. Sidney Poitier. 128 mins. Scottish director Caton- Jones gives 70s thriller The Day Of The Jackal a contemporary makeover and ends up instead with a meandering wigfest low
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32 THE LIST 20 Feb—S Mar 1998
on thrills and high in tourist information. Willis plays a top hitman hired by the Russian Maﬁa to kill someone high up in the US Government. but only Gere's Ioveable IRA terrorist knows what the assassin really looks like. Overlong and overblown. Glasgow: Odeon Quay. Edinburgh: UCI. Largs: Barrﬁelds. Paisley: Showcase. St Andrews: New Picture House. James And The Giant Peach (U) (Henry Selick. US. 1996) Paul Terry. Susan Sarandon. Simon Callow. 79 mins. From the director of Tim Burton 's The Nightmare Before Christmas comes a wonderfully colourful adaptation of Roald Dahl‘s much- Ioved novel. Live action tops and tails the story. but for the most part. it's fun times with stop-motion puppets. By turns funny and scary. it stays tme to Dahl‘s surreal and whimsical vision. Edinburgh: Odeon.
Kolya (12) (Jan Sverak. Czech. I996) Zdenek Sverak. Andrej Chamilon. Libuse Sfrankova. 105 mins. Wornaniser and batchelor Louka marries a Russian woman who wants a Czech passport and. when she skips the country. is left to look after her ﬁve-year-old son. Seperated by language. nationality. age and blood. surrogate father and child discover how to care and love across such divides. This winner of the Best Foreign Language Film oscar is a resonant mix of gentle humour and weepy emotion. with ﬁne performances and brilliant crafting. Falkirk: Town Hall.
LA. Conﬁdential (18) (Curtis Hanson. US. 1997) Kevin Spacey. Guy Pearce. Russell Crowe. Kim Basinger. 135 mins. Adapted from James Ellroy’s neo-noir novel. the best American ﬁlm of 1997 evokes a glitzy post- WW2 Los Angeles underpinned by an all- pervasive. festering corruption. An intricate. drop-dead brilliant plot links bent cops. good cops. Hollywood star lookalike prostitutes and the mob. The dialogue crackles and the actors burn up the screen: one of the few ﬁlms one would dare mention in the same breath as the deﬁnitive Chinatown. General release.
Lawn Dogs (15) (John Duigan. US. 1997) Sam Rockwell. Mischa Barton. Kathleen Quinlan. IOI mins. When ten-year-old Devon (Barton) ignores her parents' advice and heads straight for the nearby woods. she befriends local gardener and fellow outsider Trent (Rockwell). Adult prejudice taints their friendship in this contemporary fairytale with an ending that is both magical and inspiring. One of the most unexpectedly delightful ﬁlms of the year. East Kilbride: Arts Centre.
Leon (18) (Luc Besson. France. 1994) Jean Reno. Nathalie Portman. Gary Oldman. 110 mins. When his neighbour's family is wiped out by crooked cops on a bungled drugs bust. ice cool hitman beon ﬁnds himself looking after the sole survivor — twelve- year-old Mathilde. Luc Besson‘s ﬁrst ﬁlm in English is. nevertheless. a French ﬁlm in terms of style. editing and its boldness in story and theme. It‘s good to see that the director has ﬁnally got over the all-style-no- content obstacle. Glasgow: Grosvenor.
A Life Less Ordinary (15) (Danny Boyle. UK. 1997) Ewan McGregor. Cameron Diaz. Ian Holm. 101 mins. The follow-up to Trainspotting is something else entirely — an original script that boldly plays with the conventions of the romantic comedy. McGregor is a young Scot who kidnaps his boss‘s daughter when he gets the sack. only to ﬁnd his hostage turns the tables and uses events to get back at her dad. Not everything works. but it's brilliantly designed. funny. romantic and more inventive than most of Hollywood's output combined. Edinburgh: Cameo. Kirkcaldy: Adam Smith.
The Long Kiss Goodnight (18) (Renny Harlin. US. I996) Geena Davis. Samuel L. Jackson. Craig Bierko. 120 mins. Suburban schoolteacher and amnesiac Davis suddenly discovers that. in the past. she was a top CIA assassin and. with private detective Jackson in tow. avoids a host of professional killers and foils a genocide plot. It‘s action all the way and logic out the window as director (and the star's husband) Harlin delivers spectacular stunts while the script contains inspired banter. Pure escapism. Edinburgh: Cameo.
Lucie Aubrac(12) (Claude Berri. France. 1997) Carole Bouquet. Daniel Auteuil. 115 mins. Based on the real-life story of a
Ile ain't heavy: Zdenek Sverak and Andrej Chamilon in Kolya
Resistance ﬁghter who rescued her husband from the clutches of the Gestapo. Berri's ﬁlm is a tale of quiet heroism in a tempestuous time. of love on the edge. It could possibly use a few more dramatic thrills to give it some pace. but as a picture ofoccupied France where the over-riding emotion among the people was a desire to get their ordinary lives hack. Lucie Aubrat‘ is a gentle and touching success. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
Ma Vie En Rose (12) (Alain Berliner. France/Belgium/UK. I997) Georges Du Fresne. Michele Laroque. Jean-Philippe Ecoffey. 93 mins. Happy seven-year-old Ludovic loves cross-dressing and is convinced he will grow tip to become a girl. His parents hope it's a passing phase. but hostility from their neighbours causes problems. The child's eye world is visually striking. the message of accepting the ‘difference' of others worth repeating. the performances by all trememdous. A refreshingly honest look at a complex subject. Kirkcaldy: Adam Smith.
Madame Butterfly (PG) (Frederic Mitterand. France. 1996) Ying Huang. Richard 'l'roxell. Richard Cowan. 135 mins. Even those with only the skimpiest knowledge of opera will be familiar with Puccini‘s tragic love story between philandering American sailor Pinkerton and ill-fated Japanese siren Cio-Cio San. so it's disappointing Mitterand didn't take a more radical approach to the piece. What we get is a realist. meat-and-two-veg rendition in picture postcard Japanese settings. Even beginners would be better off seeing a live production. Falkirk: Town Hall.
Mortal Kombat:: Annihilation (I2) (John Leonetti. US. 1997) Robin Shou. 'l'alisa Soto. Brian Thompson. 91 mins. A no- nonsense. no-plot excuse to combine a deafening soundtrack with martial arts set- pieces. the original Mortal Kumhat was the best of the ﬁlms inspired by video games. Mind you. that's not saying much.
Expect more of the same from the sequel. at least in the ﬁght department. as our heroes take on another batch of deadly warriors ordered around by the evil Emperor of Outworld. General release.
Mrs Brown (PG) (John Madden. UK. 1997) Judi Dench. Billy Connolly. Antony Sher. 103 mins. Queen Victoria's obsessive mourning for Prince Albert is casting gloom over the entire country. so Highland ghillie John Brown is called down from Balmoral to shake up the stuffy English court. Madden's ﬁlm can‘t match the comic brio and visual panache of The Madness 0] King George. but his understated direction undeniably suits the story. The performances
are uniformly splendid. with Dench and Connolly (both perfectly cast) giving the ﬁlm a surprising emotional depth. Glasgow: Odeon Quay. UCI Clydebank. Edinburgh: UCI. Ayr: Odeon. Irvine: WMR.
My Beautiful Laundrette (15) (Stephen Frears. UK. 1985) Daniel Day Lewis. Roshan Seth. Gordon Warnecke. Shirley Anne Field. 97 mins. A young Asian from South London is given the chance to manage his uncle's laundrette. which he and his ex-skinhead boyfriend transform into the latest word in laundromats. Originally made for TV. this provided Channel Four‘s ﬁrst foray into the cinema. Edinburgh: Cameo. Occupied France Study Day Dr James Steel of Glasgow University's French Department considers the range of cinematic interpretations of the German Occupation of France during WW2. The day (10.30am-3pm) includes a screening ofA Self-Made Hero. the Walter Mitty-style drama starring Matthieu Kassovitz. Sat 28 Feb only. Glasgow: GF'I'.
Pandora's Box (15) (G. W. Pabst. Germany. 1929) Louise Brooks. Fritz Kortner. Franz Lederer. 98 mins. Jolly Teutonic monochrome. in which a woman kills her boyfriend and goes on the game. only to run into an unfortunate scrape with Jack the Ripper. Surprisingly enjoyable piece. with tern'ﬁc performance from Ms Brooks. Glasgow: GET. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
Pat Garrett and Billy The Kid (18) (Sam Peckinpah. US. 1973) James Coburn. Kris Kristofferson. Bob Dylan. 106 mins. Bloody version of the Western legend. with Peckinpah and screenwriter Rudy Wurlitzer reaching for a moody. brutal American tragedy. Years after their work was re-cdited by the studio. the ﬁlm was restored to the Director's Cut. Dylan fans will want to catch him in a decent stab at acting. Edinburgh: Film Guild.
Paws (PG) (Karl Zwicky. Australia/UK. 1997) Nathan Cavalen'. Emilie Francois. voice of Billy Connolly. 83 mins. Clever doggie PC is on a mission to deliver a computer disc. but is being tracked down by the unpleasant baddie who killed his master. Befriending computer whizz kid Zac. the mutt links up to a voice simulator and starts talking with the broad twang of Billy Connolly. Some genuinely funny moments allow for a whole range of teenage crises to be dealt with in an uncringeworthy fashion. General release.
The Postman (IS) (Kevin Costner. US, 1997) Kevin Costner. Will Patton. Olivia Williams. 177 mins. Costner's overblown patriotic epic died at the American box ofﬁce and was slaughtered by critics who reckoned that it was full of hollow conceits.