.‘ y. Samuel L. Jackso‘and Bruce W sin Unbreakable
Arthouse film or blockbuster movie?
The commerCial success of Ang Lee's Chinese-language film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon has further closed the cultural gap between arthouse and blockbuster films. In the West ’foreign language' films are automatically dubbed arthouse (and therefore marginal in economic terms), but Crouching Tiger ~ itself a mix of low brow martial arts action and high brow literary-mindedness a la Jane Austen —a has been both a critical and commercial success, in the East and West.
Recent years have seen a smattering of other foreign language films making it into the multiplexes: Germany's Run Lola Run and Italy’s Life ls Beautiful. Traditionally marginalised cult films have made the leap into the mainstream too, most notably Pulp Fiction and Trainspotting. You can trace these blips back as far as Steven Soderberg's 1989 American indie hit, sex, lies and videotape.
The leftfield success stories account for why M Night Shyamalan can make a Hollywood blockbuster thriller with A-list star Bruce Willis in the spare style of an arthouse film. Don’t expect gun play and car chases in Unbreakable, in this dark drama you get performance, plot and characterisation in spades.
THURSDAY 11 Celtic Connections A
E4's are good
Oh no, not another digital channel that no one can watch, you may cry Well maybe, but E4 is one which everyone deserves to see Channel 4’s new entertainment SGTVKQ is launched on Thursday l8 January wrth exclusive prexiews of shows which terrestrial paupers Will catch at a later date, special one-offs and glorious, glorious repeats In the first week alone, there are brand new episodes of Friends and Ally McBeal, The Best Of Borat, Ali G’s naive Kazakhstani TV reporter, Japanese extreme betting show Banzai and, hold your breath, the entire first series of The Sopranos So, get yourself connected, douchebags.
HaVing flounced around in imperial garb for Anna Karenina and gone legal in Leeds With North Square, Helen McCrory takes another step towards her deserved celebrityhood With a key role in cracking new ten- part drama, /n A Land Of Plenty (BBC 1, starts Wed 10 Jan). As a frustrated aesthete married to a hoorish industrialist, McCrory performs splendidly in white wedding dress, flowmg nightwear, chic 60s shades and bright pantaloons and, jUSl briefly, her birthday gear. And when folk tell you it’s this year’s Our Friends In The North, for once you can believe them.
proiect CeleBritation. See feature,
page 76. National Gallery Of Modern Art, Edinburgh. SUNDAY 14 Simon Munnery The one-man League Against Tedium brings his multi— media techno-terrorism
north to prepare us for a ‘ telly series in February. Quite V 3.3
Jagger ever tried to step veritable hootenanny is in store With mUSlC from as far afield as England and Cuba combining With home- grown treats. A Celtic melting pot of the finest kind. See feature, page 32. Various venues, Glasgow. FRIDAY 12 Julien Donkey-Boy Harmony Korine casts Ewen Bremner as a schizophrenic in his Dogme—style film that out avant- gardes ’mad’ Lars von Trier. Not to everyone's taste, but we say Korine's a genius. See reView, page 38.
into Ned’s shoes. See page 12. Street Level, Glasgow. reweW. page 95. WEDNESDAY 17 Royal Shakespeare Fabef Company The RSC revrves John TUESDAY 16 Webster's Jacobean classic, The Rankin Portrait Duchess Of Ma/fi. Grim, bleak, dark snapper to the and great. See preview, page 60 stars makes his Theatre Royal, Glasgow. Glasgow exhibiting THURSDAY 18 The West Wing The dEbUl W'lh show which took on Tony Soprano SGIE’CI‘OBS from at the Emmys and won makes its UK “'5 “ewe-91 debut. Funny, frantic fun in the Oval Office With Martin Sheen playing the President and Rob Lowe coming
unmissable. The Stand, ‘ ' Edinburgh.
MONDAY 15 Peter Carey The AUSSie Booker Winner returns to staggering form With his True History Of The Kelly
Fi/mhouse, Edinburgh. Gang. And it’ll up trumps as one of his aides. SATURDAY 13 Sigmar Polke On make you See preview, page 102. show for the first time, a series of forget / Channel 4.
4O gouaches by one of Germany’s that .
foremost painters. See preview, Mick ., I
4 THE LIST 5-18 Jan 2001 Simon Munnery, Sun 14
: \ ' ' s \ _\