FILM index

FILM INDEX continued

Dancer In The Dark (15) tits: (Lars von Trier, Denmark/Sweden/Gennany/France, 2000) Bjork, Catherine Deneuve, David Morse. 137 mins. Having founded the Dogrne school of back-to-basics filmmaking, von Trier's now turned his back on it with this digitally-shot homage to the Hollywood musical. Set in 603 America, it's the story of Czech immigrant Selma (played by Bjork, whose extraordinary performance takes naturalism to its extreme), a single mother whose only escape from her dreary factory work life are her daydreams which tranSport her into a Hollywood-style musical. As with Breaking The Waves, the drama revolves around a naive young woman who becomes the victim of circumstance, and the ensuing protracted tragedy gives the film astonishing emotional clout. The Lumiere, Edinburgh. Les destinees sentimentales (12) *ttt (Oliver Assayas, France, 2000) Charles Berling, Emmanuelle Bean, Isabelle Huppert. 180 mins. Assayas seems one of the most contemporary of French filmmakers, odd choice then this turn of the century period drama about the rise and fall, life and love of impulsive Jean Bamery. Bamery separates from his wife (Huppert) and devotes himself to God, then gives up the cloth for a family business after falling for Béart. The film explores this epic life lived however confusedly, rather than the intimist rigour of earlier Assayas films with their shorter time spans and sparer narratives. See review. Filmhouse, Edinburgh.

Dinosaur (PG) *** (Eric Leighton, Ralph Zondag, US, 2000) Voices of: DB. Sweeney, Julianna Margulies, Joan Plowright. 82 mins. This latest computer animated offering from Disney follows the journey of Aladar the lguanadon as he flees across the meteor-ravished wasteland of prehistoric Earth alone after being separated from his family. Initially, the excitement is contagious; the CGl scenes are so realistic it‘s not that hard to believe what you are watching could be real. Then tragedy strikes; the lemurs talk. And talk. Yet as the predictable and, ultimately, boring storyline of Dinosaur unfolds, that winning Disney formula is guaranteed to keep any dinosaur crazy four-year-old pinned to his or her seat without scaring them too much. Showcase, Paisley.

Dolphins (U) The producers of the most successful IMAX movie ever, Everest, take us undersea into the aquatic home of dolphins. With narration by Pierce Brosnan and music by Sting. IMAX Theatre, Glasgow.

Dr No (PG) *‘kt‘k (Terence Young, UK, 1962) Sean Connery, Ursula Andress, Joseph Wiseman, Jack Lord. 105 mins. The first Bond movie, and a vintage one at that. A very young-looking and Scots-sounding Connery works his charming (and in hindsight somewhat camp) way through the diabolical back passageways of Dr No‘s evil empire and the requisite number of floozies, pausing only to take out the occasional tarantula and take in the Caribbean scenery. To say nothing of Ms Andress' spectacular appearance on the beach with that conch shell . . . They don't make ‘em like they used to. Filmhouse, Edinburgh.

Extreme Screen (U) mu 40 mins each. Although the lwerks experience impresses on a technical level, neither of these two films transcend entertainment as lumbering fairground attraction. Everest is a dry-as- sand account of a recent expedition up the big yin. Filmed in the style of a Sunday afternoon docudrama, it also has the dubious honour of rendering a remarkable adventure mundane. A much better bet is the visually wondrous The Living Sea, an ‘edutaining' look at mankind '5 relationship with the sea (with voice-over from Meryl Streep). UGC Cinemas, Edinburgh.

The Family Man (12) iii (Brett Ratner, US, 2000) Nicolas Cage, Tea Leoni, Don Cheadle. 126 mins. ln Ratner's inside-out updating of It ’sA Wonderful Life, Cage is a hot-shot Wall Street broker who one Christmas Eve suddenly finds himself inhabiting the life he would have led had he not abandoned his college sweetheart Kate

42 THE LIST 5 Jan-18 Jan 2001

(Leoni) thirteen years earlier to pursue his career. No longer a strutting Master Of The Universe in a $2,000 suit, he’s now a poor sap who wears baggy sweat pants and sells tires for a living, and naturally he ’s (initially) horrified by this transformation. Cage’s exquisitely modulated performance saves the film from becoming schmaltz is; he finally exudes a rueful, good-natured sweetness that makes him Stewart’s worthy heir General release.

The Flintstones In Viva Rock Vegas (PG) ** (Brian Levant, US, 2000) Mark Addy, Stephen Baldwin. 91 mins. This prequel shows Fred (Addy) and Barney (Baldwin) in their bachelor days when they first court Wilma (Johnston) and Betty (Jane Krakowski). They are abetted in this by a little green alien called Gazoo (Alan Cumming), but are hampered by the rival attentions of Wilma’s slimy aristocratic chum Chip Rockefeller (Thomas Gibson). And they all live happily ever after, without a trace of originality, zip or zest. UCI, Glasgow.

Gaea Girls (PG) (Kim Longinotto/Jano Williams, UK, 2000) 106 mins. At times harrowing study of an all female Japanese wrestling group. Much of the action centres on the training of a group of women, and what they go through is physical and mental torment. All to become stars in one of Japan’s most popular sports. As fascinating as it is disturbing. Part of the Sheffield International Documentary Festival GFT, Glasgow.

Genevieve (U) tit (Henry Cornelius, UK, 1953) Dinah Sheridan, John Gregson, Kay Kendall, Kenneth More. 86 mins. Two couples race from Brighton to London in their vintage cars in this popular post-war feelgood movie. Light and flufiy, with charming performances from the four leads. The Lumiere, Edinburgh.

Ghost Dog: The Way Of The Samurai (15) it (Jim Jarmusch, US/Japan/France/ Germany, 2000) Forest Whitaker, John Torrney, Clifl’ Gorman. 116 mins. Jim Jarmusch's latest foray into nowhere sees Whitaker’s New York street urchin as a professional Mob assassin who lives by an ancient Eastern code of honour. But when a hit goes wrong, the mob are after Ghost Dog and gangster friend Louie (Tormey) is caught between loyalties. It’s taken the radical auteur an awful long time to miss the particular boat of sending up the mob. Jarmusch should probably stick to making throwaway movies about ageing rockers, Helsinki cabbies and Japanese Elvis fans instead of attempting the grand spiritual narrative. Cameo, Edinburgh.

Gladiator (15) iii (Ridley Scott, US, 2000) Russell Crowe, Richard Harris, Joaquin Phoenix. 150 mins. Just before

dying Caesar Aurelius (Harris) charges General Maximus (Crowe) with cleaning up his beloved, but politically corrupt Rome. Aurelius’ son, Commodus (Phoenix), doesn’t take kindly to this and has his rival executed. But Maximus survives and, as a gladiator, works his way back to Rome intent on revenge. Parallels must be drawn with Spartt'cus and Ben Hur; we've not seen a Roman epic in a long time. Scott's is a handsome spectacle and exciting enough, but that’s all it is. Filmhouse, Edinburgh. The Glenn Miller Story (U) *inkt (Anthony Mann, US, 1954) James Stewart, June Allyson, Harry Morgan, George Tobias. 116 mins. Stewart is the unfailingly chummy band leader with the relentlessly practical wife, who makes it to the top and then takes one plane ride too many. A must- see for fans of the big band sound of the late Mr Miller. Bathgate Regal.

Going Off, Big Time (18) *** (Jim Doyle, UK, 2000) Neil Fitzmaurice, Sarah Alexander, Bernard Hill. 86 mins. Another British gangster film, but one that moves the location from London’s East End to Liverpool, which highlights the central theme that anybody can become a gangster, where chance and circumstance play a major role. However, this premise implodes with the realisation that criminal Mark Clayton (Fitzmaurice, also the film’s writer) is about as threatening as a lullaby baby. Therefore. it's a good thing that the film places a lot of emphasis on the comic element of the lives of these wannabe gangsters. Odeon, Dunferrnline.

The Golden Bowl (12) what (James Ivory, UK/US, 2000) Nick Nolte, Kate Beckinsalc, Uma Thurman, Jeremy Northam. mins. The Merchant-Ivory team's polished adaptation of Henry James’s The Golden Bowl pits innocence (Notle's widowed American billionaire and his daughter, Beckinsale) against experience (Northam's impoverished Italian aristocrat Prince Amerigo and his illicit lover, Maggie’s worldly friend, Thurman). Ruth Prawer Jhabvala's script smooths out the teasing, irreducible ambiguity ofJames's writing. Enough remains, however, of the book’s elegant convolutions of betrayal and guilt, jealousy and suspicion to make this a cut above the average frock flick. The Lumiere, Edinburgh.

Goya In Bordeaux (12) *1” (Carlos Saura, Spain, 2000) Francisco Rabal, Jose Coronado, Dafne Fernandez. 102 mins. Goya (Rabal), wracked by fear and by memories and hallucinations, looks over his life through his work. There's the moment he painted a seductive duchess (Maribel Verdu), and then there are difliculties painting in a political and royal environment where great art was less important than

Tom Hanks is washed up on a deserted island in the South Pacific in Robert Zemeckis' modern-day take on Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe survival saga, CastAway

skilled diplomacy. Working once again with the great Italian cinematographer Vittorio Storaro, Saura finds a visual correlative for the art: offering a delicate balancing act between psychological exploration and aesthetic beauty The Lumiere, Edinburgh. The Grinch (PG) tit (Ron Howard, US, 2000) Jim Carrey, Taylor Momsen, Jeffrey Tambor. 105 mins. Surprisingly, The Grinch is the first live action feature to be adapted from the work of the world’s best~selling children’s author, Dr Seuss. And beneath sfx magician Rick Baker's green costume Carrey the world's highest paid comedian wrecks glorious havoc on his cloying sweet neighbours, the Whovians of Who- ville. Howard lays the book's moral Christmas is about family not presents and the sickly-sweet sentiment on pretty thick. Toy Story 2 got the cross generational appeal right; golly gosh Howard's Grinch hasn't. Carrey's great though. General release. Hard Boiled (18) *tit (John Woo, Hong Kong, 1992) Chow Yun-Fat, Tony Leung, Teresa M0. 126 mins. A tough cop nicknamed Tequila is driven by obsession to nail a Triad gun-runner in John Woo's incomparable Hong Kong gangster movie. The action sequences particularly the opening tea-house shoot-out and the climactic hospital finale show the action movie master at his best, as he takes moments of on-screen violence to levels of choreographed genius. Cameo, Edinburgh. Heavenly Pursuits (15) *** (Charles Gormley, UK, 1986) 91 mins. Tom Conti, Helen Mirren, David Hayman, Dave Anderson. Conti is at his charming best in this Glasgow comedy. He begins to believe there may be something to this miracle business after he recovers from a brain tumour. Lightly amusing and well-acted satirical saga. GFT, Glasgow.

High Fidelity (15) *ttt (Stephen Frears, US, 2000) John Cusack, lben Hjejle, Jack Black. 113 mins. Nick Hornby‘s story of a vinyl junkie who's more interested in his music collection than his relationships with women is practically a British institution. Yet, Cusack - and co-writer/producer pals D.V. DeVincentis and Steve Pink - have drawn on their own pasts to make a film that‘s as funny and profound as the book. But the great script, cast and music wouldn't have meant a thing without a filmmaker of Frears' calibre taking charge. Filmhouse, Edinburgh.

The House Of Mirth (PG) tartar (Terence Davies, UK, 2000) Gillian Anderson, Eric Stoltz, Anthony LaPaglia. 140 mins. Davies' superb screen adaptation of Edith Wharton's novel, filmed in Glasgow, makes it clear that beneath the well-bred skin of New York society at the turn of the century lurks a remorseless