FILM INDEX continued
0n Connait la Chanson (PG) (Alain Resnais. France. I998) Andre Dussolier. Agnes Jaoui. Jean-Pierre Bacri. I22 mins. Resnais follows five characters in search of love and self-respect in modern-day Paris. The novelty here lies in how the characters express their emotions: the film is structured around song-snippets to which the characters mime. Dussolier asks. with the aid ofJohnny Halliday. 'what's wrong with my mug'; Aze’ma. clenching her fists. decides to ‘resist'. courtesy of one of France’s biggest pop hits of the 80s. Glasgow: GFT. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
101 Dalmatians (U) (Stephen Herek. US. I996) Glenn CIOse. Joely Richardson. Jeff Daniels. l03 mins. Disney turns one of its favourite animated films into a live action pantomime. The story remains pretty much untouched — vile villainess Cruella De Vil (Close) kidnaps enough spotty pups to make a stunning coat. btit the animal world gets the better of her — and so does the old— fashioned morality. which stresses the sanctity of marriage and that a woman's place is by her man's side. Supported by the short film The Pen. Edinburgh: Lumiere. Out Of Sight ( l 5) (Steven Soderbergh. US. I998) George Clooney. Jennifer Lopez. Ving Rhames. I23 mins. This stylish adaptation of Elmore Leonard's novel teams CIooney’s bank robber Jack Foley with Jennifer Lopez‘ chic. Chanel-wearing cop. Soderbergh catches perfectly Leonard's sly. deadpan wit. while infusing it with a wistful melancholy. Stuart. sexy and deliciously bitter-sweet. General release.
The Parent Trap (U) Dennis Quaid. Natasha Richardson. Lindsay Lohan. l25 mins. This updated version of the Hayley Mills original casts Lohan in the dual role of identical twins completely unaware of each other's existence until they discover the truth at summer camp. Never having met the other parent. American Hallie and English Annie agree to swap identities. It makes for a sweet natured. well meaning story that trades on elements of farce and the odd bit ofslapstick. General release.
Paulie: A Parrot's Tail (PO) (John Roberts. US. I998) Jay Mohr. Tony Shalhoub. Gena Rowlands. 9| mins. Caged in a research institute. Paulie the parrot relates his life- story: frotn helping a little girl with a stutter to a series of adventures with various adults. Neither as immediater cute nor as bizarrely inspired as Bribe. Putt/tr nevertheless marks a step in the right direction for the DreamWorks studio. Jay Mohr‘s vocal talents give the parrot a streetwise sense. while the mix of live action and animatronics ts always realistic. Kilmamock: ()deon.
The Philadelphia Story (PG) (George Cukor. US. I940) Katharine Hepburn. Cary Grant. James Stewart. I I2 mins. Splendidly sophisticated Hollywood comedy with Stewart as a scandalsheet reporter covering the society wedding of recently divorced Hepburn. ex-hubby Grant lurking in the wings. and romance recurdling despite itself. Sparkling dialogue and charismatic
performances all round make this one of the best of its kind. Edinburgh: Cameo.
II Postino (U) (Michael Radford. Italy. I995) Massimo Troisi. Philippe Noiret. Maria Grazia Cucinotta. l()8 mins. When exiled Chilean poet Pablo Neruda (Noiret) arrives on a remOte island off the Neapolitan coast. he aids local postman Mario (Troisi) to woo the village barmaid. Gently paced and full of Mediterranean sun. Radford's film is nicely unsentimental. Sadly. Troisi died the day after shooting was completed. but he couldn’t have left a finer legacy. Edinburgh: Cameo.
The Prince Of Egypt ( U) (Brenda Chapman. Steve Hickner. Simon Wells. US. I998) Voices of Val Kilmer. Ralph Fiennes. Sandra Bullock. Michelle Pfeiffer. 99 mins. The Exodus story. animated for the big screen. With some artistic licence. it follows Moses from his discovery as a baby by Pharaoh's wife. through his formative years as a Royal Prince to his fall from grace when he discovers his true Hebrew background. The familiar tale is told in an imaginative and inventive fashion. yet in aiming for such a bold. epic approach the human focus is lost. See review. General
42 THE LIST 17 Dec 1998—7 Jan 1999
The Private Life Of Henry VIII (PG) (Alexander Korda. UK. I933) Charles Laughton. Robert Donat. Elsa Lanchestet'. 96 mins. The not-so-private life of the infamous king. charting his life from hellraising womaniser to pathetic sloth. Laughton is outstanding as the bawdy. roaring. king whose every move is a matter of public interest (nothing changes). The biggest commercial success story of the UK yesteryear. Edinburgh: I-‘ilmhouse. Regeneration (I5) (Gillies Mackinnon. UK/Canada. I997) Jonathan Pryce. James Wilby. Jonny Lee Miller. I I3 minutes. Faithful to Pat Barker‘s source novel. Mackinnon's film touches on trench life dttring WW I. btit is mostly confined within the walls of Edinburgh‘s Craiglockhart Hospital. where psychiatrist Dr Rivers (Pryce) nurses the shell-shocked back to mental fitness. It‘s a sober. mournf'ul work. atid most of the fireworks comes from the actors. all of whom excel. Supported by the short film The Proposal. Iidinburgh: Lumiere.
The Ride (Jizda) (PG) (Jan Sxerak. Czech Republic. I994) 95 mins Central European road movie about two young men touring around the hot south of" the Czech Republic. But their holiday is disrupted when they pick tip a charming Iiitchhiker named Ana who is being followed by aJealous boyfriend. Part of the Czech Cinema ()ti Tour season. Edinburgh; I-"ilmhouse.
Rien Ne Va Plus ( I 5) (Claude Chabrol. France. I998) Michel Serrault. Isabelle Hupper. Francois Cluzet. I05 mins. A couple of con artists (Serrault and Hopper) enter the big time as Huppert hitches tip with businessman Cquet tn a Swiss ski resort to steal his suitcase containing five million francs. There‘s so little attempt to engage the audience dramatically that some will take Chabrol for an amateur. Others may see a subtle. bloody minded tronist at work. See review. Glasgou. (ii-'I‘.
Rob Roy (15) (Michael Caton-Jones. US/UK. I995) Liam Neeson. Jessica Lange.
Tim Roth. l30 mins. When he is betrayed by
the Marquis of Montrose (Hurt) and a maliciously psychopathic Englishman (Roth). Rob Roy MacGregor is determined to win back the honour of his name. Alan Sharp‘s script is rich. witty and literate; Caton-Jones's direction injects a little action. btit doesth pander to Hollywood; and all the performances are wonderful. A stirring epic which refuses to compromise. making it one of the best films about Scotland and the Scottiin psyche ever made. Edinburgh: Lumiere.
Ronin (I5) (John I-‘rankenheimet'. US. I998) Robert De Niro. Jean Reno. Natasha McElhone. l2? mins. A crack team of post- g/usnm/ super-spies steal a Pandora's Box- Iike briefcase from the French for the Irish before it’s sold to the Russians. The plot is fttll of holes and the \s hole affair unfolds with a total lack of irony. which swiftly
we M mess.“
Cop a plea: Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan in Rush Hour
becomes laughable and undermines the suspense. Glasgow: ABC Film Centre. Odeon Quay. Showcase. Edinburgh: ABC Multiplex. UCl. Paisley: Showcase.
Rush Hour (PG) (Brett Rainer. US. I998) Jackie Chan. Chris Tucker. 97 mins. Chan has surely US superstardom with this mismatched buddy movie. Chan is Hong Kong cop Lee. sent to America to assist in the hunt for the kidnapped daughter of his friend. the Chinese consul. He is paired with maverick LA cop Tucker suffering delusions of competence. It's the kind of mindlessly enjoyable. action-packed romp that you might wish the [.c'I/iu/ Wed/mu films still were. General release.
Saving Private Ryan (I5) (Steven Spielberg. US. I998) Tom Hanks. Tom Sizemore. Matt Damon. I70 mins. Like no film in recent memory. Saving PI'II‘rlll‘ Ryan focuses its attention squarely oti the brutalities endured by American soldiers in World War II. Central to this impact is the already legendary opening half hour. detailing with remorseless brilliance the carnage of the D-Day landings. The actual meat of the story. in which Hanks is sent off with the remnants of his unit to locate the eponymous Ryan. is built on rugged rather than subtle lines. Glasgow: Showcase. L'Cl. Paisley: Showcase.
Secret Defense (PG) (Jacques Rivelle. I-‘rance. I998) Sandrine Bonnaire. Gregoire Coliii. Jerzy Radziwilowicz. I70 mins. With the world moving ever faster. Rivette believes it is art cinema's purpose to slow everything down. which he does with the thriller genre in Secret [xi/mic. Bonnaire's Parisian research scientist is apparently too involved in her own life to worry about anybody else's. 'I'hat begins to change when her brother shows her a picture implicating their dead father's business partner in their father's death. Stirling: MacRobert. Shallow Grave I I8) (Danny Boyle. UK. I994) Kerry I-‘os. Ewan McGregor. Christopher Iiccleston. 90 mins. Three Iidinburgh flatmates find their new co- habitant dead with a stack of money under his bed. so after performing a little DIY on the corpse. they reckon all their wotries are over. But the cops are closing in. there are two thugs after the money. and the psychological tension is beginning to show Filled with dark humour and cynical one- Itnet's. this Scottish thriller is bloody atid intelligent enough to please the cult audience while remaining accessible enough to be a mainstream hit. Glasgow: Grosvenor. Iidinhurgh: Lumiere.
Shine ( I 2) (Scott Hicks. Australia. I996) (ieoffrey Rtish. Noah 'I'aylor. Armin Mueller-Stahl. I05 mins. Winner of nine top awards at Australia's equivalent of the Oscars. Slime is a remarkable and devastating film about the life of child prodigy atid pianist David Helfgott. who
vs as forced to retire from the stage due to a mental breakdown. but returned later iii life.
The performances show real love. while the recital passages are presented with a conviction that underlines the quality of the film as a whole. Edinbutgh: Filmhouse. Short Cuts (I8) (Robert Altman. US. I993) Andie MacDowell. Tim Robbins. Lily Tomlin. Tom Waits. et al. I87 mins. Long and absorbing. Altman's patchwork approach shifts Raymond Carver's short stories to Los Angeles. a city socially and geologically on the point of falling apart. The stories cross over. character's lives rub together. threads are picked up after receding for a while — this is classy soap opera at its best. with flawless acting and construction. Edinburgh: Cameo.
The Singing Ringing Tree (U) (Francesco Stefani. East Germany. I958) 73 mins. Imaginative adaptation of the Grimm Brothers' tale. in which Princess 'I‘housandbeauty's suitor prince has the unenviable task of supplying her with said vegetation in order to win her hand. Glasgow: GF'I‘.
Sitcom ( I8) (Francois Ozon. France. I998) Adrien de Van. Marinade Van. Evelyne [)andry. 85 mins. How funny one finds the idea of a strait-laced famin suddenly given to incest. sado-masochism and bisexuality depends on how close one feels to the conventions Ozon mocks — and how scandalised one is by that mockery. One feels that Sitcom's 3I-year-old director is sharper than the film's more obvious moments suggest. See preview and review. Glasgow: GF'T.
Small Soldiers (PG) (Joe Dante. US. I998) Kirsten Dunst. Gregory Smith. Denis Leary. I I0 mins. Dante plunders his anarchic live action cartoon tale. Grunt/ins. substituting ons for little devils and adding state-of-the- art computerised effects. unfortunately. .S'niul/ Soldiers displays none of the sadistic mischief. nor the knowing Capra-esque whimsy of its antecedent. Sanitised. bland atid banal. General release.
Soldier (PG) (Abbas Mustan. India. I998) |5I mins. The eponymous soldier commits a murder and flees his motherland to meet his destiny in this musical thriller. In Hindi without subtitles. Edinburgh: Cameo.
Star Trek: Insurrection (PG) (Jo than I-‘rakes. US. I998) Patrick Stewart. Jonathan l~'rakes. Brent Spinner. I04 mins. The New General/mt crew’s second outing finds Captain Picat'd defying orders when he is sent to attack an alien race on a remote planet. The allegorical story — destroy a race in the name of progress — will strike a chord with Americans troubled by their own early history. but will it travel to this side of the Atlantic'.’ See review. General release. Sweet Smell Of Success (l5) (Alexander Mackendrick. US. I957) Burt Lancaster. Tony Curtis. Susan Harrison. 96 mins. lialing comedy director Mackendrick's first American movie is a dark-centred conspiracy thriller with a superb evocation of fear and paranoia. shot on the streets of