eye with some stock situations and characters. Creating tension and turmoil out of the rite of passage movie gets harder and harder, but Moodysson manages a modicum of freshness, and there are enough variables at work to keep the film going for an engaging hour and a half. Glasgow: GF'I‘. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

The Sixth Sense (15) *tit (M. Night Shyamalan, US, 1999) Bruce Willis, Haley Joel Osment, Olivia Williams, Toni Collette. 107 mins. Nine-year-old Cole Sear (Osment) has a terrible secret. He can see the dead walking the earth; they’re around him all the time and it's scary as hell. Child psychologist Malcolm Crowe (Willis) takes his case and spends all of his time, at the expense of his marriage to Anna (Olivia Williams), attempting to help the boy. Shyamalan's clever script suggests much and explains little, keeping the audience guessing. Glasgow: Odeon At The Quay, Showcase, UCl. Edinburgh: ABC, UCI. East Kilbride: UCI. Paisley: Showcase.

Solas (Alone) (15) **** (Benito Zambrano, Spain, 1998) Maria Galiana, Ana Fernandez, Carlos Alvarez. 98 mins. A delicate study of a 35-year-old cleaning woman‘s realisation that bouts of drinking and temper tantrums aren‘t going to make her any happier. As Maria’s mother stays at her city apartment while Maria’s father recovers from surgery in hospital, Maria discovers she's pregnant and decides she wants to keep her child. Part of the Spanish Film Festival. See preview. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

Soloman And Gaenor (15) (Paul Morrison, UK, 1998) loan Gruffudd, Nia Roberts, Sue Jones Davies. 104 mins. In the early 19005 romance between a Welsh woman and a Jewish man causes consternation among their families in this beautifully photographed drama. Edinburgh: Cameo. South Park: Bigger, Longer 8: Uncut (15) *** (Trey Parker, 1999, US) Voices of: Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Isaac Hayes. 80 mins. The premise reeks of the kind of smug self-referentiality you’d expect from hypemeisters Parker and Stone: the influence of a movie starring flatulent Canadians Terrance and Philip ups the little fellas' foulmouthery; their clean-minded parents spearhead a bloody attack upon Canada; a few audacious leaps of credulity later, humanity is at the brink of destruction. Along the way there's enough profanity, perversion and scatology to make Bernard Manning blush plus an alarming foray into hi-tech animation, and a glimpse of Kenny sans hood. Edinburgh: Cameo.

Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace (U) tit (George Lucas, US, 1999) Ewan McGregor, Liam Neeson, Natalie Portman. 132 mins. On the surface, the plot structure isn‘t a million light years away from the original Star Wars. In visual terms, The Phantom Menace stands alone in the cinematic universe. At times you’d think there was more animation than live action on screen - and maybe it's this toning down of the human element that has left the film lacking soul. Edinburgh: Cameo.

Stigmata (18) iii: (Rupert Wainwright, US, 1999) Patricia Arquette, Gabriel Byme, Jonathan Pryce. 102 mins. Portentous, religious-themed supernatural thriller that’s rips off the obvious genre classics: The Exorcist and The Omen. Pittsburgh hairdresser Frankie Paige (Arquette) is afflicted with wounds that resemble those suffered by Christ on the cross. Her increasingly torturous condition comes to the attention of the Vatican, where devious Cardinal Houseman (Pryce) despatches investigator Andrew Kieman (Byme) to check on the validity of Paige's case. Edinburgh: Cameo.

The Straight Story (U) ***** (David Lynch, US, 1999) Richard Famsworth, Sissy Spacek, Harry Dean Stanton. 111 mins. Midwestern old timer Alvin Straight is hellbent on re-uniting with his estranged, terminally ill brother so he takes to the road aboard his motorised lawnmower. Famsworth‘s lead performance is honest, heart-felt and credible, while Lynch maintains his fascination with the inherent strangeness of smalltowns and lost highways. But, in this sublime snail’s pace odyssey, modern psychosis is replaced by old time decency. Glasgow: Odeon.

Edinburgh: Cameo.

Strangers On A Train (PG) *ttti (Alfred Hitchcock, US, 1951) Farley Granger, Robert Walker. 101 mins. Hitch's appropriation of Patricia Highsmith’s novel, the conceit for which is two strangers who get chatting aboard a long train journey and both admit to people they would like to kill one is joking, the other is deadly serious. With it’s climax aboard an out-of-control fairground ride and two superb central performances, this is one of Hitchcock’s best. Glasgow: GFI‘.

Summer Of Sam (18) **** (Spike Lee, US, 1999) John Leguizamo, Adrien Brody, Mira Sorvino. 142 mins. Summer 1977 in New York. Disco is the hottest new sound in the clubs, while the punk rock revolution has crossed the Atlantic. The city is also melting down under a record-breaking heatwave, causing blackouts, looting and riots. Out in the Bronx, however, New

Yorkers are concerned about something else:

a murder Spree by a serial killer dubbed by the media the ‘Son Of Sam’. Lee tackles intolerance once more, and it’s his best shot at the subject since Do The Right Thing. Stirling: MacRobert.

The Talented Mr Ripley (15) *ttt (Anthony Minghella, US/UK, 2000) Matt Damon, Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow. 139 mins. Tom Ripley (Damon) befriends then adopts the life of rich kid Dickie Greenleaf (Law). Ripley being an infamous literary murderer, it’s no surprise how he goes about claiming Dickie‘s ex pat lifestyle in late 505 Italy, but Minghella’s film and Highsmith's novel - is so much more than a tale of murder; it’s also about lust, love and the interchangeability of identities. Classy all the way. General release.

Tarzan (U) **** (Kevin Lima and Chris Buck, US, 1999) Minnie Driver, Glenn Close, Nigel Hawthorne. 88 mins. Disney has finally turned its attention to the second most filmed character in Western cinema (Dracula is the first) and has created some astonishing images. Storytelling-wise, Tarzan remains reasonably faithfully to Edgar Rice Burrough’s original. Shipwrecked on a tropical island, baby Tarzan looses his human parents to a terrifying tiger and is adopted by an ape clan. All grown up, the Ape Man is reunited with man and womankind when a trophy hunting/anthropological expedition arrives and Tarzan meets Jane. Edinburgh: Odeon. Greenock: Waterfront. Kilmarnock: Odeon. Stirling: MacRobert.

10 Things I Hate About You (12) **** (Gil Junger, US, 1999) Julia Stiles, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Heath Ledger. 98 mins. It could have been horrible. But this high school-set reworking of Shakespeare's The Taming Of The Shrew is not only faithful to its source, but is a funny, charming and enjoyable film in its own right. Purists may be aghast at the hijacking of such a literary jewel, but films like this offer easy access to great stories. Bathgatc: The Bathgate Regal. Thelma 8: Louise (15) **** (Ridley Scott, US, 1991) Susan Sarandon, Geena Davis, Harvey Kcitel, Michael Madsen. 129 mins. The buddy/road movie genres are turned on their heads as Sarandon and Davis grasp the steering wheel and head off leaving a trail of murder and mayhem in their wake. On one level. the film is the critical catalyst that had the feminists cheering and put the stars on the cover of Time magazine; just as importantly, it's an accessible piece of entertainment with excellent central performances. Stirling: Carlton.

The Third Man (PG) *‘k‘kti (Carol Reed, US/UK, 1949) Joseph Cotton, Orson Welles. 100 mins. Set in an unstable post- World War II Vienna, Holly Martins has been invited to the city by his old chum Lime, who is now in the grand-scale drug- dcaling business, only to discover that he is dead. Except, he isn’t of course, and a multi- layered cat and mouse scenario is triggered. So, what‘s so good about it? Well, you have a stirring zithcr score by Anton Karas, the Ferris wheel and the ‘cuckoo clock' speech yet possibly it's greatest triumph is to cram so much wonder into so little time. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

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