True Crime (15) 127 mins .=a-.- .52

Clint Eastwood’s 21st film as a director is an enjoyable, qwetly involving thriller With some annoying, if forgivable, shortcomings. As befits an ex-Western star wnh a penchant for iazz, his narrative pacing is somewhere between a gentle mosey and an improwsed meander he’s more interested in character, texture and detail than in getting from A to B as qwckly as possible

Now nearly 70, Eastwood brings his years of human and acting experience to the role of Steve Everett, a washed- up iburnalist who is asked to write a routine piece about a black Death Row prisoner‘s last hours We know immediately that he's going to 'follow his nose' and start digging up eVidence

Race against time: Clint Eastwood and James Woods in True Crime

to prove the man's innocence.

The male banter between Eastwood’s hard-bitten reporter, Denis Leary's effectively subdued city editor and James Woods's flamboyantly coarse editor-in-chief provides some hilariously unreconstructed light relief. Elsewhere the tone is generally serious and sombre, especially during the chilling, clinical bUild-up to the saintly Frank Beachum's execution. Unfortunately, the idealisation of Isaiah Washington's black Victim feels faintly patronising did he have to be quite so gentle and dignified, his Wife and daughter qune so picture perfect? Still, there's more substance here than you'd find in any ten films by Steven Spielberg or George Lucas, so you pays your money and you takes yOur ch0ice.

(Nigel Floyd) Selected release from Fri 4 jun

Deep End or The Ocean (15) 105 mins

Michelle Pfeiffer puts her experience of motherho©d to good use in this moist- but-not-sopping missmg :hiid drama lifted from lacciuelyr‘ I.litcliard’s hefty bestse Ier

Very much a begins 1".

filri‘. 0f (if/O halves, it l‘.’id(ldi§()ll, ‘.'\"isconsin in I988, cineie pl‘iotrigraplier Beth Cappadora Pfeiffer s blissfully married to devoted family man Pat (Treat \.‘L’il:iainsi The adoring, if imported, 'notlier of three young children, Beth criimoles when their middle child, three-year-old Ben, is abducted at a reunion dinner Despite a natiOnaI press campaign, the best efforts of friends and family, and the tenacity of police inspector Candy Bliss (Whoopi Goldberg), Ben is not found f Nine years later, the dysfunctional

Little boy lost: Treat Williams and Michelle Pfeiffer in Deep End Of The Ocean

remains of the Cappadora famin are living in Chicago, and Pat is opening his first restaurant. Beth, still on the verge of a nervous breakdown, is practically a stranger to her iittle girl and her teenage son Vincent (JOnathan lacksom Then, one day, a young boy (Ryan Merriman) from the neighb0urhood knocks on the door to see if he can mow the lawn, and Beth is convmced it is Ben

Unfussily directed by Ulu Grosbard, screenwriter Stephen Schiff's distillation of the novel conveys the themes of identity and fraternity, but ineVitably suffers from sketchy characters and a ierky stOryIine It's a very self-sewing proiect for Pfeiffer too, though she does give an excellent study of gum and inadequaCy in a role that, for once, puts her acting before her looks (John MacKenzie)

2552: Selected release from Fri 4 Jun

new releases FIlM

Human Traffic (18) 95 mins One of that rare breed a good mowe about contemporary dance culture —- Justin Kerrigan's debut feature owes a few debts to Trainspotting, but has a witty, energetic feel all of its own Set in Cardiff, alth0ugh it could be anywhere, the film follows a gang of friends over a non-stop weekend of boozing, mobile phonecalls and drug- inspired clubbing. Edgy Scouser Jip (John Simms) is Our Virgil for this trip into the first Circle of ravedom, whether commenting on his own sexual inadequacy or introducing his mates, who have identity problems of their own.

It’s a lot of fun, With Kerrigan's ear

E-male: John Simms in Human Traffic

for the often ridiculous language used by the E-generation tempering the exuberance of the house, techno, Jungle and hip hop music selected by Pete Tong and the characters' blissed out enjoyment There's even time to make a point about the ephemeral nature of the experience a night of excess as a brief antidote to a never-ending series of mind-numbing working weeks

Particularly spot on is the post-club hOuse party, where a rambling Tarantino- esque discussion about drugs in Star Wars is killed stone dead by the comedown into sobriety The command of style, or styles, is impressive (Simon Wardell) 3 Selected release from Fri 4 Jun See prevrew

FILM SEASON Visions Of Norway

Edinburgh: Filmhouse from Mon 7 Jun. Glasgow: GFT from Wed 9


Only a few weeks ago, a Norwegian-Scottish movie Ic‘ailed, strangely enough, Aberdeen) was shooting in and ar0und Glasgow Now the Norwegian connection continues as a selecuon of recent films comes to Scottish big screens Cinematically, Norway has always been little brother to its Scandinavian siblings Sweden had Bergman, Finland has the Kaurismakis and Iceland has Fridrii: Thor Fridriksson; Denmark is on a roll With Bille August, Lars “Jon Trier and Festen's Thomas Vinterberg Last year, Junk Mail brOught Norway hack into a spotlight that had fallen almost exclusively on actress Liv Ullman Llllman - star of Persona, Face To Face and Cries And Whispers turned director in I993 and her second film behind the camera, the period love story Kristin lavransi'i'ritter, screens as

part of this season

Things get underway, however, With Knut Erik Jensen's litzrnt by Frost, set in the rugged north of Norway and examining the country‘s uneasy polztical history. Others to watch out for include Dance Of Life ia biopic of artist Edvard Munch) and a bunch of children's films including Body Troopers, in which a miniaturised boy travels inside his grandfather's bOOy to Cure his illness tAIan Mornsorii

8 See listings and index


Virus (18) 99 mins

Given that it's taken five months to get here since it opened in America, this Virus can't be very contagious This time the nasty infection that needs to be eradicated is the human race, targeted by an alien Iifeform which beams down to a satellite- tracking ship After killing the crew (except for the obligatory sole SurVivOr), the electronic ET fuses With machinery and body parts when a salvage team cinviittingly reconnects its power source

Sci-fi rnOVIe as Surrogate haunted house horror flick, wzth the characters picked off one by one strove seen it in Alien, E vent Horizon and Deep Rising Here traditional shock tactics are supplemented by typhoons and a

skilfully realised part-flesh, part-metal

Cliche epidemicszlamie Lee Curtis in Virus

monster, With Donald Sutherland, Jamie Lee Curtis and William Balds‘riii topping

the cast list

Virus marks the directorial debut of John Bruno, who has spent 30 years deViSIng mowe special effects, including an Oscar for his work on i'lie Abyss However, American critics have already pencilled it onto their year's worst list best to stay at home and pretend you’ve got the flu iAlaii Morristini

E General release from Fri 4 ion

2." May 1') hill 19*?“ THEUST 25