his act by wearing comic book costumes, all of which troubles pale in comparison to family man Tom’s domestic stresses. Chase confounds expectations to appear, for the first time in years, in a movie that is actually funny. Kilmarnock: Odeon.

Star Kid (PG) *irk (Manny Coto, US, 1997) Joseph Mazzello, Richard Gilliland, Corinne Bohrer. 100 mins. Shy, bullied Spencer (Jurassic Park '5 Mazzello) discovers an alien Cybersuit with a voice and personality of its own. Climbing inside, he gets back at his school nemesis, but finds himself up against a deadlier foe when he faces intergalactic tough nuts, the Broodwarriors. Clearly aimed at pre- adolescent boys who want to fill out their underdog fantasies, Star Kid is a better than average kids movie. Stirling: Carlton.

Stir Of Echoes (15) *‘k* (David Koepp, US, 2000) Kevin Bacon, llleana Douglas, Kathryn Erbe. 99 mins. Tom Witzky (Bacon) sees dead people, a spooky insight that only comes about when he's hypnotised by sister-in-law Lisa (Douglas) as a party trick. The supernatural material allows Koepp (working from Richard Matheson's 1958 novel) a narrative means of getting beneath the surface sheen of modern American life. At the centre of the sudden scares and the low key special effects, Bacon gives the film a sense of blue collar reality. General release.

The Story Of Us (15) ** (Rob Reiner, US, 2000) Bruce Willis, Michelle Pfeiffer, Rob Reiner. 95 mins. Willis and Pfeiffer’s Ben and Katie Jordan are a couple whose relationship has grown stale. After 15 years of marriage, their once attractive quirks have hardened into irritations. Despairing of their future together, they pack their kids off to

summer camp and agree to a trial separation.

But is there any juice left in the marriage? Maybe, but there's little in this risible romantic comedy. Largs: Vikingar Cinema. Strangers On A Train (PG) *~k*** (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. Edinburgh: Cameo.

Supernova (15) it (Thomas Lee, US, 2000) James Spader, Angela Bassett, Robert Forster. 90 mins. No less a trio of luminaries than Francis Ford Coppola, Walyter Hill and Geoffrey Wright have been attached to this sci-fi thriller that's ended up with Alan Smithee replacement pseudonym Thomas Lee on the credits. Out in the depths of space where people still find it difficult to hear you scream, the crew of hospital spacecraft Nightingale 229 respond to a distress single and, surprise, take something nasty and alien aboard. Selected release.

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kward but awe-inspiring epic

Sweet And Lowdown (PG) **** (Woody Allen, US, 2000) Sean Penn, Samantha Morton, Uma Thurman. 95 mins. Penn is simply awesome as 19305 musician Emmet Ray, the self-proclaimed second best guitar player in the world. Respect for the ‘gypsy guitar man' Django Reinhardt is Ray‘s sole element of humility; he is rude, egomaniacal and utterly selfish and the one who suffers most is the mute Hattie (the splendid Morton). Visually, musically, dramatically and comedically, SweerAnd Lowdown can sit comfortably among Woody Allen's best works. And with the passing of cinematic time, they will surely be reflected upon as his lead pair‘s finest hour and a half. See review. Glasgow: GFT. Edinburgh: Cameo.

The Talented Mr Ripley (15) timid (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. Edinburgh: Cameo, Lumiere. Taxi Driver (18) ***** (Martin Scorsese, US, 1976) Robert De Niro, Cybill Shepherd, Jodie Foster. 114 mins. An alienated taxi driver in New York is so repelled by the squalor and the moral decay around him that he is driven to terrible violence. One of the key films of the seventies with the Scorsese-De Niro partnership at its peak. Edinburgh: Cameo. Tea With Mussolini (PG) *intr (Franco Zeffirelli, Italy/UK, 1999) Cher, Joan Plowright, Maggie Smith. 117 mins. Zeffirelli's film is partly autobiographical, partly fictitious, and concerns the effect on his own upbringing and education by a group of English ladies living in Horence at the time of 11 Duce's rise to power. This particular brew by Zefferelli and John Mortimer has a melange of flavours and is deftly poured in the most idyllic of settings, yet it seems oddly lacking in zest. Stirling: Carlton.

Telford Degree Show From drama to documentary to commercials, graduates from 'l‘elford‘s School Of Creative Arts show how much can be achieved working on video with a low budget. See review next issue. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

Three Kings (15) ***** (David 0. Russell, US, 2000) George Clooney, Mark Wahlbcrg, Ice Cube. 114 mins. At the butt end of the Gulf War, four US soldiers who have seen no action whatsoever and don't even understand what the war is about, follow a treasure map to where Saddam Hussein has hidden stolen Kuwati gold. A masterpiece of inhumanity, Russell's witty script and super sharp direction captures the futility of the situation. This film begs some of the most pertinent political questions ever

asked in an American movie it’s amazing it got passed congress. Kirkcaldy: Adam Smith.

The Tigger Movie (U) wants (Jun Falkenstein, US, 2000) 77 mins. ldentical in many ways to 1977's The ManyAdvenrures 0f Winnie The Pooh, this new yarn based on A.A. Milne’s characters finds Pooh, Piglet, Tigger et al still living a charmed life of tea parties and afternoon naps. Only this time, the wee stripy fella's decided being one of a kind isn‘t quite as cool as he’d first thought and so a literal quest for the Tiger Family Tree ensues. A happy ending eventually makes its presence felt, because even Tigger is smart enough to recognise that with friends like Pooh, Piglet, R00 and Eeyore, who needs family? General release.

Titanic (12) **** (James Cameron, US, 1997) Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Billy Zane. 194 mins. Cameron tackles the story of the doomed ocean liner through a touching love story that isn't overwhelmed by the awesome special effects. Rich girl Rose (Winslet) is unhappin engaged to arrogant Cal (Zane) but falls for third-class passenger Jack (DiCaprio): love blossoms as the ship hits an iceberg in the North Atlantic. In all its on-screen glory, Titanic does indeed look like the most expensive film ever made, conveying both the scale of the disaster and the feeling of claustrophobia as the water rises. Glasgow: Grosvenor.

To Walk With Lions (12) **** (Carl Schultz, Canada/UK/Kenya, 2000) Richard Harris, Ian Bannen, Kerry Fox. 105 mins. Born Free brought George and Joy Adamson's work returning captive lions into the wild to a world-wide audience. Focusing on an elderly Adamson (Harris), this film picks up some time after Born Free left off, as pressure from herdsmen, the government and warring bandits threaten the survival of his project. The moving narrative has a powerful impact, not least because it's based on fact. Stirling: Carlton.

Topsy-Turvy (12) **** (Mike Leigh, UK, 2000) Jim Broadbent, Allan Corduner, Martin Savage. 159 mins. At the film’s core is the turbulent creative partnership between Victorian opera writer Gilbert (Broadbent) and playboy genius composer Sullivan (Corduner). But preparations for their greatest show, The Mikado, involve a whole cast who give flawless performances. This might be Leigh's first period drama, but it’s another excellent ensemble piece engaging with his usual preoccupation: people at work. rest and play. Falkirk: FfH Cinema. Toy Story 2 (U) ***** (John Lasseter, US, 2000) Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack. 95 mins. The new film expands on the original settings and themes: When Woody is not taken to Cowboy Camp by his owner Andy, he begins to question the meaning of his ‘life‘. When he’s subsequently stolen by a collector who plans to sell him to a Japanese toy museum Buzz and the gang travel across town to rescue their pal. The emotive range of the animated characters is extraordinary; they say that computer generated images will never replace the real thing, but Toy Story 2 makes you wonder. Edinburgh: Dominion, Odeon. Ayr: Odeon. Galashiels: Pavilion. Kilmarnock: Odeon.

Trick (15) iii (Jim Fall, US, 2000) Christian Campbell, Jean Paul Pitoc, Tori Spelling. 89 mins. Gabriel (Campbell) has just pulled Mark (Pitoc) and is looking good for a night of action, except there's nowhere they can go to fulfil their desire. So instead they wonder around town searching for a friend who can help them out, and in doing so create a bond far stronger than there initial carnal desire. Trick makes no issue out of the fact that the main characters are homosexual, moving away from stereotyping and issues which cling to gay movies. Edinburgh: Filmhouse. Tumbleweeds (12) innit (Gavin O’Connor, US, 2000) Janet McTeer, Kimberly J. Brown, Jay 0. Sanders. 102 mins. Mary Jo (the mesmerising Mc’l‘eer) first got married when she was seventeen and she's been running from one no good husband to another ever since, but her teenage daughter, Ava (Brown), has had enough of their nomadic existence. Question is: will mom ever change? The story's not particularly new, but where this kind of material has elsewhere been

index FILM

drowned in sentiment and cliche, Tumbleweeds feel fresh, real, vital. Stirling: MacRobert.

28 Days (15) ** (Betty Thomas, US, 2000) Sandra Bullock, Viggo Mortensen, Steve Buscemi. 109 mins. Bullock loses her wholesome image in this comedy drama playing alcoholic celebrity writer Gwen Cummings, a full-on party girl who lands herself in a month’s court-ordered rehab. Bullock does hit a convincing note of rueful self-awareness, but her new insight seems too easily achieved. 1f the film doesn‘t exactly plumb the lower depths of its heroine's psyche, at least it refreshingly refuses to give us an upbeat, sentimental ending. See review. General release.

U-S71 (12) **** (Jonathan Mostow, US/UK, 2000) Matthew McConaughey, Bill Paxton, Harvey Keitel. 115 mins. Mostow plays fast and loose with WWll history; the first successful attempt to secure an Enigma coding device from a German U-Boat was achieved by the Royal (not US) Navy. But his aim isn't gritty realism. Instead, this is a rollicking, old fashioned adventure that's more in the style of The Guns OfNavarone than Das 8001. McConaughey comes over like a movie hero from the mould that broke when Mitchum and McQueen hit the dirt. General release.

Une Liaison Pornographique (15) «Add (Frederic Fonteyne, France, 2000) Sergi Lopez, Natalie Baye. 80 mins. An anonymous man (Lopez) and woman (Baye) separately recount to an unseen interviewer the nature of their ‘liaison pomographique'. 1n flashback, we learn of their sexual fantasy, a routine repeated on a weekly basis. The film, whilst retaining a sense of mystery around the couple’s erotic encounters, does achieve a measure of poignancy through the subtle, credible performances of Lopez and Baye. See review. Glasgow: GET. Edinburgh: Filmhouse.

The Virgin Suicides (15) tits: (Sofia Coppola, US, 2000) Kirsten Dunst, Kathleen Turner, James Woods. 96 mins. American suburbia in the 19705. When the five beautiful Lisbon sisters begin killing themselves one-by-one, there ’5 nothing the local and adoring boys can do but watch, and afterwards carry into their adult lives regret, confusion and loss. Coppola’s adaptation of Jeffrey Eugenides‘ novel is shot through with a beautiful, melancholic nostalgia for lost youth. The central mystery is never resolved, and the film remains all the more powerful for it. Edinburgh: Cameo. Galashiels: Pavilion.

When The Sky Falls (15) *t* (John Mackenzie, UK, 2000) Joan Allen, Patrick Bergin, 106 mins. Mackenzie's fact-based film paints a very dark picture of Dublin: evil gangsters, maverick cops and crusading journalists. The hack in question is Sinead Hamilton (to all intents and purposes reporter Veronica Guerin), who wages a war of words against the city ’5 drug barons, constantly upping the stakes despite being threatened, beaten and shot. Ultimately, it's the Scottish director's gift for cinematic violence and Allen's compelling presence which elevate the film above TV movie status. See review. Selected release.

Whisky Galore (PG) ***** (Alexander Mackendrick, UK, 1949) Basil Radford, Joan Greenwood, Jean Cadell. 82 mins. Much-loved Ealing comedy by the late Sandy Mackendrick. A ship carrying a cargo of whisky is shipwrecked off a Scottish island during wartime, so the locals decide it’s time to wet their thirst. Full of wit and charm that others can only hope to emulate. Glasgow: Grosvenor.

The Whole Nine Yards (15) iii (Jonathan Lynn, US, 2000) Matthew Perry, Bruce Willis, Rosanna Arquette. 98 mins. A screwball crime comedy that teams fidgety Perry with laid-back Willis. Nicholas Ozeransky (Perry) is a hen-peeked Montreal dentist whose shrewish French-Canadian wife (Arquette) has saddled him with her late father's debts. Jimmy ‘The Tulip’ Tudeski (Willis) is the affable hit-man who hasjust moved in next door. Not hard to tell what happens next, but the pairing of Willis and Perry works surprisingly well. General release.

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