want a baby to fulfil their blissful lives. Written and directed by Elton, it's no surprise that there are some very funny lines in a film that's destined to be heralded as the new Four Weddings. General release. Microcosmos (U) ***** (Claude Nuridsany/Marie Perennou, France, 1995) 75 mins. A bug-eyed look at the world of insects, this I-‘rench one-off falls somewhere between a narrativeless documentary and an ensemble piece for its array of tiny characters. What unfolds is a kind of life-in- a-day between the blades of grass in an overgrown meadow. The award-winning macro-photography and imaginative sound evoke and surpass the artificial worlds created in all those science fiction movies. Glasgow: Gl’l‘.

The Miracle Maker (U) ** (Stanislav Sokolov, Derek Hayes, UK, 2000) Ralph Eiennes, Julie Christie, Richard E Grant. 91 mins. Miracles may never cease, undoubtedly the reasoning behind previous attempts to render the Easter Story palatable. The latest gimmick is to add puppets, which, although oddly dated, impresses on its own low tech level. Despite deftly tugging at the heartstrings, the puppetry can't disguise the fact that this is a Sunday school reading in a millennial medium. Irvine: Magnum Theatre. Stirling: Carlton.

Mission To Mars (PG) Hr (Brian De Palma, US, 2000) Gary Sinese, Tim Robbins, Connie Neilsen. 116 mins. The year is 2020 and NASA has landed on Mars, but a mysterious phenomenon wipes out the astronauts and a rescue mission is dispatched. Melodrama is prioritised over science fiction thrills and much of the blame lies in the appalling dialogue and gun-ho patriotism. Worse still, De Palma opts for stunningly obvious exposition; at his film's quasi-religious climax you‘ll think: ‘80 what'." Campbeltown: Picture House. Modesty Blaise (PG) **** (Joseph Losey, UK, 1966) Monica Vitti, Dirk Bogarde, Terence Stamp. I 19 mins. Amidst a welter of silly Sixties comic strip capers, this typically outre Losey effort still seems weird. Starring glacial Antonioni regular Vitti as the eponymous heroine trying to stop Dirk Bogarde's camper than camp criminal mastermind from taking over the world, it's the wonderful op-art sets and delightfully dated costumerie (dig that silver wig, Dirk baby) that still hold the attention because the parodic gags and deliberately stoopid plotting never were as funny as the film-makers seemed to pretend. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

Muppets From Space (U) *tt (Tim Hill, 1999, US) Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire, Frank Oz. 88 mins. For their sixth big screen adventure, the focus of our Muppet attentions is Gonzo, that blue, hooked nosed . . . thing. No one is really sure what GonZo is, so when he gets a message which he believes is from space, the race is on to make contact with his extra terrestrial brethren. Muppets From Space captures the spirit of the first movie and the original TV series where the subsequent films never did. Edinburgh: Lumiere. Glenrothes: Rothes Halls.

My Life So Far (12) ** (Hugh Hudson, UK, 2000) Robert Norman, Rosemary Harris, Malcolm McDowell, Colin Firth. 98 mins. Everything in llugh Hudson's film is about to change. l-‘raser Pettigrew (Norman) is about to go from childhood innocence to sexualised adolescence. The Scottish estate of the elderly matriarch Gamma (Harris) is about to be passed onto a new generation, either her go-ahead capitalist son (McDowell) or her dithering romantic nephew Edward (Firth). Genteel affluence is about to give way to wartime hardship. loosely based on the memoirs of Sir Denis I’orman, My Life So Far would love to be a play by Chekhov. Instead it's a mushy piece of nostalgic whimsy. Dunoon: Studio Cinema.

The Ninth Gate (15) ** (Roman Polanski, US, France, 2000) Johnny Depp, Frank Langella, Lena Olin. 133 mins. Depp‘s ‘book detective' Dean Corso is hired by collector Boris Balkan (Langella) to locate copies of a text that may well have been illustrated by Satan himself. When the people Corso meets die in odd set-piece scenes that bring those pictures to life, he

knows he's dealing with forces much more powerful than any of human origin. Though Polanski’s film nods to the likes of Edgar Allen Poe, the dominant literary infiuence would appear to be Dennis Wheatley. There’s only a minimal amount of tangible suspense or scares, and the dialogue clunks so loudly it brings an elephantine subtleness to mumbo jumbo. Glasgow: Odeon Quay, Showcase. Edinburgh: UGC. Paisley: Showcase. Wishaw: Arrow Multiplex.

One Day In September (15) *mbkt (Kevin MacDonald, UK, 2000) Narrator: Michael Douglas. 94 mins. Macdonald’s Oscar-winning documentary about the Palestinian organisation Black September‘s terrorist action at the 1972 Olympic Games plays like a tense political thriller. The tragic story is told through grieving Israeli relatives, a vengeful Mossad agent, feckless Bavarian security officers and the sole living terrorist. lfgaining the full context of the Arab/Israeli struggle is your goal, libraries are full of the stuff. If an absorbing retelling of a jet black day where the sport/politics interface fatally clashed, then this should be your starting block. See review. Glasgow: GET. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

Orphans (18) **** (Peter Mullan, Uk, 1999) Douglas llenshall, Gary Lewis, Stephen McCoIe, Rosemarie Stephenson. 105 mins. Four orphans of varying ages attempt to come to terms with the death of their beloved mother during one dark, stormy night in Glasgow. Mullan's feature directing debut mixes emotional frankness with humour verging on the surreal to great effect. While individual set pieces and performances impress, the whole thing comes together remarkably. Glasgow: GilmorehillGlZ.

The Palm Beach Story (U) ***** (Preston Sturges, US, 1942) Joel McCrea, Claudette Colbert, Mary Astor. 85 mins. The wife of a failed New York inventor heads south to find a new and millionaire husband in order to fund her inventor's next hair- brained scheme: an airfield suspended above NYC no less. Sturges’ is known for his brand of screwball humour, and here he notches it all the way up to number eleven. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

Pippi Longstocking (U) ** (Clive Smith/Michael Schaack/Bill Giggie, Canada‘Sweden/Germany, 2000) 78 mins. There’s something vaguely disturbing about a nine-year-old girl who parades down the street singing ‘Oh what a fabulous day, I'm happy as can be' having just watched her father being washed out to sea. But maybe that's being churlish. After all, Pippi Longstocking's anarchic behaviour has won her a place in the hearts and on the bookshelves of many a child since Astrid Lindgren first unleashed the world's first riot girl. But in an age of sophisticated children's films, Pippi Longstocking with all her exuberance, fails to deliver. Edinburgh: Eilmhouse.

Pokemon (U) *ir (Michael llaigney/Kunohiko Yuyama, Japan/US, 2000) 96 mins. Cloned Pokemon (pocket monster) Mewtwo embarks on world dominance and so hero kids, Ash, Brock and Misty, accompanied by their Pokemon, set out to make him see the error of his ways. Cue a great deal of gratuitous fighting and an interlude in which it's explained that fighting is bad ('PI). The stupor induced by viewing the film strand of the phenomenal Pokemon franchise (computer game, collecting cards, etc.) as an adult, convincingly confirms that it's a kid thing, good or bad. General release.

Pola X (18) *‘k (Leos Carax, France, 2000) Guillaume Depardieu, Catherine Deneuve, Delphine Chuillot. 134 mins. Pierre (Depardieu) is a successful young writer, who enjoys a blissful existence with his adoring mother (Deneuve) and beautiful fiancee (Chuillot). But his life is turned upside down by the appearance of Isabelle (Katerina Golubeva). who claims to be his long-lost, illegitimate sister from Yugoslavia. Eight years after the patchy Les Ame/its Du Pom Neuf, Carax returns with this bizarrely updated adaptation of Herman Melville's Gothic novel Pierre ()r The Ambiguities which sorely lacks narrative coherence. Edinburgh: I-‘ilmhousc.

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index FILM

Renfrewshire’s Festival



Paisley Choral Festival Club Diverse Nightclub

John Byrne @ 60: The Unsolved Artist

Paisley Book Festival Children’s Theatre Eric Bibb

Kultyer Dance @ Paisley Arts Centre

Sma’ Shot Day


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8—22 Jun 2000 THE LIST 41