FILM listings FILM LISTINGS continued

le-Z (15) kirk (John Woo, US, 2000) Tom Cruise, Thandie Newton, Dougray Scott. 124 mins. Evil ex-super spy Sean Ambrose (Scott) has stolen a lethal chemical weapon, and he wants big bucks not to unleash it. Ethan Hunt (Cruise) is charged with retrieving it and enlists beautiful cat thief and Ambrose's ex- lover Nyah Hall (Newton). M.‘l 2 works best and is most faithful to the spirit of the original Mission: Impossible while the operation remains covert, but Woo blows it with a clumsy all-out action finale. General release. Magnolia (18) **** (Paul Thomas Anderson, US, 2000) Julianne Moore, William H. Macy, Philip Seymour Hoffman, John C. Reilly, Tom Cruise. 185 mins. RT. Anderson's follow-up to his superb 705 LA porn industry flick, Boogie Nights is a snapshot of the lives of a dozen residents of LA's San Fernando Valley . Their stories are sad, funny and moving without ever becoming overly-sentimental and Anderson's script is full of humble humanity and beautifully observed moments. And the quite stunning miraculous conclusion is audacious but it works the same can be said of the whole film. Edinburgh: Lumiere. A Matter Of Life And Death (PG) ***** (Michael Powell/Emeric Pressburger, UK, 1946) David Niven, Kim Hunter, Roger Livesy, Raymond Massey. 104 mins. Wonderful film that rises above its beginnings as a piece of wartime propaganda about goodwill between Britain and the USA. Niven is an RAF pilot who finds himself before a heavenly tribunal when he bales out of his burning plane. A witty and stylish fantasy with a fair share of on-target satire. Edinburgh: Lumiere.

Mulan (U) *ttt (Barry Cook, Tony Bancroft, 1998) Voices of: Ming-Na Wen, Donny Osmond, Eddie Murphy. 89 mins. After Disney‘s tastily designed venture into Greek mythology with Hercules, the studio has brought its lens to bear on the rich and colourful possibilities of Chinese legend. The most striking aspect of this romantic epic is its magnificent animation. Details of character, movement and expression are as fine as should be expected from the world‘s best known cartoon studio, but the stunning large-scale set pieces are truly astonishing, while the design team stirs in an authentic flavour of China. Dunfermline: Odeon. Kilmarnock: Odeon. My Dog Skip (U) *i* (Jay Russell, US, 2000) Kevin Bacon, Diane Lane, Frankie Muniz. 95 mins. My Dog Skip is an unashamedly sentimental coming-of-age story about a nine-year-old boy's relationship with his pet Jack Russell terrier, set during World War TWO in the small Mississippi town of Yazoo. The film casts a nostalgic glow over the past, but it doesn't shy away from giving us glimpses of harsher realities, including nods to the era's racism and the traumas of war. But the prevailing mood is appropriately one of gentle sweetness. See review. General release. Nora (18) iii (Pat Murphy, Uk, 2000) Susan Lynch, Ewan McGregor. 106 mins. A period drama recounting the early struggles of modernist and post-modernist literary genius, James Joyce, Nora is more interesting as a study of Nora Barnacle, a free-spirited and highly courageous young woman. Murphy's film, adapted from Brenda Maddox's acclaimed book about their lifelong love affair, follows the early years of their tempestuous relationship, made so by Joyce '5 unrelenting jealousy and Nora’s submissive dotage. Excellent performances from the leads make this worth watching. Edinburgh: Lumiere.

Of Freaks And Men (18) writs: (Alexei Balabanov, Russia, 1998) Sergei Makovetsky, Victor Sukhorukov, Dinara Drukarova. 93 mins. A homage to early cinema in its use of silent film plot aids and sepia-tinted monochrome cinematography, the story follows the predatory exploits of Johann, a fiendish purveyor of early pornography set in turn of the century St Petersburg. With the aid of his grinning idiot henchman, Victor, the porn ring widens to engulf the lives of two noble families, exposing the humorous and startling underbelly of depravity beneath the austere trappings of the Russian bourgeoisie. Part absurdist farce, part surreal fetishistic nightmare. Stirling: MacRobert.

14 rue usr 10—17 Aug 2000

One Day In September (15) ***** (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. 1f gaining 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. Kirkcaldy: Adam Smith. The Patriot (15) ##ka (Roland Emmerich, US, 2000) Mel Gibson, Heath Ledger, Jason lsaacs. 160 mins. Swapping his saltire for the stars and stripes, Gibson's revolutionary fervour is back on the boil as he trounces King George '5 Redcoats during the American War of Independence. The Patriot is epic, action-packed stuff and

there ’5 something for everyone: corn and cringeworthy American backslaps, adventure and battle scenes, issues of loyalty and honour, and a strong performance from Gibson forming the bedrock of it all. General release.

The Perfect Storm (12) it (Wolfgang Petersen, US, 2000) George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio. 129 mins. As the director of one of the best maritime movies of all-time, Das Boot, Petersen was an obvious choice to helm this adaptation of Sebastian Junger’s riveting factual book about a fishing boat caught up in the most ferocious North Atlantic storm ever recorded. However, in trying to be true to the actual events, Bill Wittliff‘s pedestrian script suffers from chronic structural flaws, leading to a complete lack of suspense, tension and emotional undertow. If ever a film deserved to sleep with the fishes, then this is it. General release.

Pippi Longstocking (U) H: (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. Stirling: Carlton.

Pokemon (U) ***** (kids)/** (adults) (Michael Haigney/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 (P!) 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. Dunfermline: Odeon. Relative Values (PG) tit (Eric Styles, UK, 2000) Julie Andrews, Colin Firth, Stephen Fry. 89 mins. Noel Coward's satire of the British class system circa 1954 sees spoilt brat Nigel (Edward Atterton) upset the Marshwood household when he brings American actress Miranda (Tripplehorn) home to announce his engagement. Modem audiences may find it difficult to identify with Coward’s now dated play with its patronising upper classes, servile lower ones and misogynist attitude to women but if you can put your own values on hold, there are some laughs to be had. Stirling: MacRobert.

The Road To El Dorado (U) tit (Eric ‘Bibo’ Bergeron, Don Paul, US, 2000) Voices of Kevin Kline, Kenneth Branagh. 90 mins. DreamWorks’ animated travelogue moves from ancient Egypt to 16th-century Latin America for this enjoyable if safe musical comedy adventure. Uber-thesps Kline and Branagh provide the voices for Tulio and Miguel, two Spanish ne'er-do-

Colonel Samuel L. Jackson sacrifices civilians to protect his troops and gets court-

martialled for his trouble in William Friedkin's reactionary courtroom drama, The

wells who end up in possession of a map revealing the location of El Dorado, mythical city of gold. Ransacking Aztec and Mayan culture for visual ideas and themes, the co-directors introduce lots of bold colour and rich design into the tale. General release.

Rules Of Engagement (15) iii (William Friedkin, US, 2000) Samuel L Jackson, Tommy Lee Jones, Guy Pearce. 127 mins. When the evacuation of the US ambassador from the riot-tom embassy in Yemen culminates in the massacre of more than 80 men, women and children by Colonel Terry Childers (Jackson) and his unit of Marines, military lawyer Colonel Hays Hodges (Jones) reluctantly agrees to defend the man who saved his life in Vietnam. Friedkin's pot-boiler quickly loses all credibility in the visually and morally murky courtroom scenes. its simplistic view of military ethics implies that decisions made in the heat of battle exist above the petty expediencies of everyday morality. See review. General release.

The Sixth Sense (15) *ttav (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 Crowc (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. Kilmarnock: Odeon.

Sleeping Beauty (U) *iit (Clyde Geronimi, US. 1959) Voices of Mary Costa, Bill Shirley, Eleanor Audrey. 75 mins. Disney‘s classic animated version of the traditional nightmarish fairy tale. Though not quite in the same league as Cinderella, there's much to admire: mountain-top castle and dark forests, fairies and woodland animals and a rousing classical soundtrack. Still delights after all these years. Edinburgh: Odeon.

Rules Of Engagement

Stuart Little (U) *‘k* (Rob Minkoff, US, 2000) Michael J. Fox, Geena Davis, Hugh Laurie. 92 mins. Live action with a computer generated talking mouse voiced by Michael J. Fox, Minkoff's adaptation of EB. White’s classic childrens’ book sees the sweet wee rodent orphan being adopted by affluent Manhattanites the Little family. Stuart's problems begin with a new nemesis, the mean-spirited, inapprOpriately-named family cat Snowbell. The message of the film is clear - little guy discovers the meaning of family, loyalty and friendship - but of more interest to viewers both small and large will be the Tom AndJerry-style antics. General release.

Sweet And Lowdown (PG) *ttt (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, Sweet And 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. Edinburgh: ABC.

Tarzan (U) **** (Kevin Lima and Chris Buck, US, 1999) Minnie Driver, Glenn Close, Nigel Hawthome. 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. Glasgow: Odeon At The Quay.