FILM USTINGS continued
Greenwich Mean Time (18) (John Strickland, UK, 1999) Steve John Shepherd, Alec Newman, Chiwetel Ejiofor. 117 mins. On their last day of school, a group of friends are told by their teacher to ’leave the conﬁnes of your existence and break free from the boundaries of South East London’ . . . and so they forrn a band. Unfortunately, G:MT is far too moralistic to capture the identity of British youth at the close of the Millennium. Glasgow: GFI‘.
Gregory's ‘Mo Girls (15) (Bill Forsyth, UK, 1999) John Gordon Sinclair, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Carly McKinnon. 104 mins. Gregory Underwood is still the endearing, awkward, immature boy of 1979, although by 1999 he’s a teacher at his old school in Cumbemauld. Forsyth cleverly develops the ﬁlm’s two plot strands to play on Gregory’s emotional immaturity and innocence. In one Gregory avoids the attentions of Kennedy '3 fellow teacher while fantasising about McKinnon’s school girl; in the other he is reacquainted with old school pal Fraser Rowan (Dougray Scott), an entrepreneur involved in highly unethical business dealings. General release. Halloween H20 (18) (Steve Miner, US, 1998) Jamie Lee Curtis, Michelle Williams, Josh Hartnett. 89 mins. Forget the tiresome sequels that followed 1981 ’5 Halloween 2. The plot picks up with Laurie Strode having changed her identity to that of a respected school headmistress, haunted by the masked face of Michael Myers, her insane killer- brother. Perhaps the only slasher movie to make any claim to the crown of John Carpenter’s original. Edinburgh: Odeon. The Haunting (12) (Jan De Bont, US, 1999) Liam Neeson, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Lili Taylor. 113 mins. From Robert Wise’s classic 1963 ghost story, for some critics the best of its kind, De Bont starts his remake carefully and pretty successfully, then quite literally loses the plot, as his Special effects budget takes over from storytelling. Here, the story of a small group of people gathered in and tested by an old dark house is ﬁnally treated for its spectacle value, rather than its atmosphere. General release.
The Ice Storm (15) (Ang Lee, US, 1997) Kevin Kline, Joan Allen, Sigoumey Weaver. 112 mins. In Nixon era Connecticut, Kline’s dying affair with neighbour Weaver pushes wife Allen further into a numbed frigidity, just as both families’ teenage children are making their first sexual forays. Lee’s satiric eye may be acute but he has a compassionate vision of human weakness, and beneath the humour is a sense of profound unease. Scene after scene, deftly directed and beautifully acted by the cast, sends a chill into the heart. Edinburgh: Cameo.
An Ideal Husband (PG) (Oliver Parker, UK, 1999) Rupert Everett, Cate Blanchett, Julianne Moore. 100 mins. When scheming Mrs Chevelcy blackrnails brilliant politician Sir Robert Chiltem behind his loving wife’s back, loaﬁng Lord Goring comes to his friend’s assistance in this ﬁne adaptation Oscar Wilde’s play. The cracking cast do justice to the archetypical Wildean witticisms. Glasgow: Grosvenor.
The Idiots (18) (Lars von Trier, Denmark] France/ltaly/Netherlands/Germany/Sweden, 1999) Bodil Jurgensen, Jens Albinus. 114 mins. In Lars von Trier’s follow up to Breaking The Waves, a bunch of ‘idiots’ run a little bit amok in their village, get thrown out of tea-rooms, make whoopee at the swimming baths and disrupt board meetings. But these misfits are as sane as you or I, with a simple aim to test society’s attitudes to the disabled. Appreciation naturally conquers enjoyment but The Idiots is a challenge well worth taking up. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
The Indian In The Cupboard (PG) (Frank 02, US, 1995) Hal Scardino, Litefoot, David Keith. 96 mins. For his birthday, young Omri is given a magic cupboard that brings to flesh-and-bone life his plastic toys, principally Native American Little Bear. Excellent sfx bring Lynne Reid Banks’ novel to life, but aside from that, it doesn’t really develop, apart from some trite moral lessons about showing respect for the lives of others. Stirling: Carlton.
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Instinct (18) (Jon Turtletaub, US, 1999) Anthony Hopkins, Cuba Gooding Jr. 123 mins. Dr. Ethan Powell (Hopkins), stationed in Africa to study apes, is found two years after his disappearance in the jungle. Upon his discovery, he savagely kills three men, but is ultimately imprisoned until a psychologist aims to break his cell-induced silence. All very uninspiring from Turtletaub, who found he could do nothing original with the romantic comedy (While You Were Sleeping), either. Irvine: Magnum. The Italian Job (PG) (Peter Collinson, UK, 1969) Michael Caine, Noll Coward, Benny Hill. 100 mins. Re-released for its 30th anniversary, this larf-a-minute caper movie ties in nicely with the 605 cockney kitsch sensibility that’s been infusing fashion, pop and ﬁlm ever since Blur put out Park Life. The centrepiece remains the Mini Cooper car chase across, atop and under the streets of Turin. Edinburgh: Filmhouse, Lumiere. Kirkcaldy: Adam Smith.
Jakob The Liar (12) (Peter Kassovitz, US, 1999) Robin Williams, Alan Arkin, Bob Balaban. 119 mins. Following Life Is Beautiful, which approached the subject of the Holocaust with a similar mix of gravity and grim humour, Williams plays Jakob Heym, a Jew living in the Polish ghetto in 1944. Summoned to Nazi headquarters after breaking curfew, he overhears a radio report on the progress of the war. Recounting this to a friend, Jakob witnesses the positive effect such news has on those around him and invents more and more stories to keep up this renewed optimism. Glasgow: Showcase.
Jesus (U) (Peter Sykes, US, 1979) Brian Deacon, Niko Nitai, Gadi Roi. 117 mins. Straightforward Biblical biopic of you- know-who, ﬁlmed in Israel. Galashiels: Pavilion.
John Carpenter's Vampires ( 18) (John Carpenter, US, 1999) James Woods, Thomas Ian Grifﬁth, Sheryl Lee. 107 mins. Obsessive mercenary Jack Crow (Woods) and his Vatican-backed band of vampire Slayers take on Valek (Grifﬁth), a 600-year- old blood-sucker. A few years back, the title John Carpenter's Vampires might have quickened one’s pulse, but this Vampire Western feels like a throwback to the bad old days of 1970s gore movies. Littered with gratuitous female nudity and repellent violence against women. Glasgow: Odeon, Odeon At The Quay, Showcase Cinema, UCI. Edinburgh: UCI. Kilmarnock: Odeon. Paisley: Showcase.
Journey To The Sun (15) (Yesim Ustaoglu, 'I‘urkey/Germany/Netherlands, 1999) Newroz Baz, Nazmi Qirix, Mizgin Kapazan. 104 mins. Journey To The Sun is that rare and beautiful thing — a movie polemic that moves the emotions on nearly every level without once Spiralling into hysteria. When Mehmet, a dark skinned Turk from the West, befriends Berzan, a Kurd from the East, in Istanbul, his life is changed. Through misfortune and mistaken identity Mehmet’s life becomes politieised as he is forced to live as a marginalised Kurd, a lifestyle that eventually compels him to undertake a remarkable journey across Eastern Turkey. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
Kanal (18) (Andrzej Wajda, Poland, 1956) Teresa lzewska, Tadeusz Janczar, Emil Kariewicz. 97 mins. A group of Polish partisans are trapped in the sewers by Nazis during the Warsaw Uprising of 1944. Closely shot in black-and-white, Wajda’s ﬁlm is tense and claustrophobically atmospheric, with an almost unbearable sense of poetic tragedy hanging over each character. Edinburgh: Film Guild at Filmhouse.
The King And I (U) (Richard Rich, US, 1999) Ian Richardson, Miranda Richardson, Martin Vidnovic. 87 mins. Animated version of the true story of Anna Leonowens and her experiences as a teacher for the royal family in 19th Century Siam. Great songs by Rodgers and Hammerstein and, being animated, the facility for more active roles to be taken by talking elephants, sentimental chimps and proud panthers. Ayr: Odeon. Late August. Early September (15) (Olivier Assayas, France, 1999) Mathieu Amalric, Jeanne Balibar. 112 mins. Gabriel, a young writer, is struggling to let go of an old relationship with Jenny at the same time as being apprehensive about committing to a
Canal dreams: William Eadie In natcatcher
120 mins. Hedren (in a role intended for Grace Kelly) is the glacial blonde heroine in this most florid of Hitchcock’s psychological melodramas. After her boss Connery catches her robbing his safe, he becomes attracted to her and the two marry, but her frigidity in the bedroom hides a much darker secret. The usual late Hitch mixture of carelessness (those backdrops!) and technical virtuosity. A playground for veteran Freudians. Glasgow: GFI‘.
The Matrix (15) (The Wachowski Brothers, US, 1999) Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Lawrence Fishbume. 139 mins. In the future, reality is actually an illusion - the human race is enslaved by a computer virus which has taken over the world. Computer genius Neo (Reeves) is one of the few people who doesn’t believe his eyes, so it’s up to him and a couple more cyber commandos to save the world. Edinburgh: Cameo.
Mickey Blue Eyes (15) (Kelly Makin, US, 1998) Hugh Grant, James Caan, Jeanne Tripplehom. 102 mins. Four Weddings meets The Godfather in this funny though highly predictable romantic comedy. Grant plays an Englishman abroad with a girlfriend (T ripplehom) whose Dad (Caan) has dubious Mob connections. It may not play to the unconverted, but for those who like him already this tale will conﬁrm Hugh as their blue eyed boy. lrvine: Magnum. Largs: Barrﬁelds Cinema.
A Midsummer Night's Dream (PG) (Michael Hoffman, US, 1999) Kevin Kline, Michelle Pfeiffer, Calista Flockhart. 115 mins. Not since Max Reinhardt’s 1934 version has any ﬁlm sought to pay loyal tribute to this classic tale of misbegotten romance and fairy magic. Hoffman relocates the story to Tuscany at the turn of the century and draws upon those changing times to highlight the conﬂict between the old and young generations in the story. Kline stands out in the role of Bottom, while the lush world of nymphs, satyrs, centaurs and Medusas is a beauty to behold. Edinburgh: Lumiere. Kirkcaldy: Adam Smith. Largs: Barrﬁelds Cinema.
Mifune ( 15) (Soren Kragh-Jacobsen, Denmark/Sweden, 1998) Anders W Berthelsen, Jesper Asholt, Iben Hjejle. 98 mins. On the eve of his wedding, Copenhagen yuppie Kresten (Berthelsen) learns that his father has died and reluctantly returns to the remote, neglected family farm. Unable to cope with his mentally handicapped brother, he advertises for a
new one with Anne. Meanwhile, his best mate Adrien is dying. Since it deals with the universal theme of change and how.people cope with it, this ﬁlm from Irma Vep director Assayas is highly accessible, but it’s too long and lacks a gripping plot structure. Glasgow: GF'I‘.
Let's Get Lost (15) (Bruce Weber, US, 1989) Chet Baker, Jack Sheldon, William Claxton. 119 mins. Photographer turned director Weber’s account of the harrowing life of the great trumpeter Chet Baker is fascinating stuff. Shortly after ﬁlming was completed Baker, 58, was dead. The miracle was that he lived so long. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.
Lucia (15) (Don Boyd, UK, 1999) Amanda Boyd, Mark Holland, Richard Coxon. 97 mins. The intent was noble, but the execution lets down Don Boyd’s attempt at a contemporary, dramatised version of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammerrnoor. The problem here is that the elaborate digital technology employed to shoot the ﬁlm seems less advanced than vacuously trendy, while the acting is either inert, or big enough for opera, but too big for ﬁlm. Edinburgh: Dominion.
Mad Cows (15) (Sara Sugartnan, UK, 1999) Anna Friel, Joanna Lumley, Greg Wise. 90 mins. This adaptation of Kathy Lette’s novel wishes to be funny and perhaps even feminist, but fails to be much more than cynical. Its characters are vehicles for hammy acting and the underlying anger of the whole thing can’t really be disguised. The plot concerns an Aussie single mum (Friel) and her attempts to make her ex (Greg Wise) take some responsibility for their six-week-old baby. She ’5 supported, if that’s the word, by Gillian (Lumley), a woman in search of men’s credit cards. General release.
Manon Des Sources (PG) (Claude Berri, France/Italy, 1986) Yves Montand, Daniel Auteuil, Emmanuelle Beart. 114 mins. Ten years after the demise of Jean de Florette, the Soubeyrans run a prosperous carnation farm. Steering this epic rural saga towards the realms of Greek tragedy, this is a full and satisfying second half that explores the suffering of the guilty as they pay a crippling penance for man’s greed and envy. The production values are as high as ever and Auteuil assumes Depardieu’s mantle in his development from glaikit idiot to broken-hearted suitor. Falkirk: FI'H Cinema. Marnie (18) (Alfred Hitchcock, US, 1964) Tippi Hedren, Sean Connery, Diane Baker.