'T'icERLAND (18) 100 mins .00
Having once inflicted upon the innocent cinema- going public such monstrosities as Batman And Robin and 8MM, director Joel Schumacher has turned his back on the Hollywood merchandising tie-ins, and embarked on a quest to be taken seriously as a filmmaker. Last year there was the low-key Flawless, in which a blue-collar stroke victim bonded with a drag queen, and now
there’s this gritty boot-camp drama, with an ‘ A, . ~ ~ . . . I. ,. .‘.
unknown young cast and Dogme-style . . I _‘ _‘ ' .1 r tgxrvgww.
cinematography. r ' 1w! -
Although Tigerland takes place entirely in Louisiana in the early 703, the spectre of the Vietnam War permeates every frame. The characters are a bunch of young American army recruits who are being put through the rigours of advanced infantry training, before they are shipped off to the battlefields of South East Asia. Tigerland itself, known to the initiated as the ‘second worst place on earth’, is a special centre which simulates the conditions of jungle warfare.
On parade here are a predictable collection of war-movie types: there’s the idealistic volunteer and narrator Paxton (Matthew Davis) who wants to turn his experiences into great literature, the sadistic sergeant, the bloodthirsty psychopath, Wilson (Shea Whigham), and the free-spirited rebel 8022 (Colin O’Farrell), who conveniently has
Star-making turn from Colin O'Farrell, playing the anti-hero
enemy through placing electrodes on genitals. Stylistically however, some interesting choices have been made by the filmmakers, which help to give Tigerland a sense of grainy immediacy. Director of photography Matthew Libatique (who lensed Requiem ForA Dream) shoots with handheld cameras on 16mm, successfully employing faded film stock and bleached-out colours. And despite the unremarkable storytelling, Irish actor O'Farrell, with a flawless
his fellow grunts. As one awed colleague comments of this modern martyr, ‘I hear that if you want out of here, you either have to pray to Jesus or talk to Raymond 8022.”
However, those who have already seen the likes of Full Metal Jacket, or Streamers, or Catch 22, will perhaps question the extent to which Schumacher and his screenwriters Ross Klavan and Michael McGruther are breaking new ground, with their depiction of how the military
an expert knowledge of military law. He is the film’s pivotal figure, an ‘absurd man in an absurd world’, an anti-hero who defiantly challenges the
attempts to dehumanise its conscripts through a series of brutal drills, exercises and punishments. In one chilling sequence the
authorities and who has a galvanising effect on
f;()lv1l DY SAY IT ISN’T SO (15) 95 mins 0
Shoddy imitation of the Farrelly brothers’ comedy masterworks
lndrana anrmal shelter employee Grlly Noble (Chris Klein) rs a krndehearted rf ll()lt(-3-I()O-l)flght orphan. who's determined to find the woman of hrs dreams. He feels an rnstant connectron to beautrful blonde harrdresser Jo Wrngfreld (Heather Grahamr, who accrdentally snrps off some of hrs rrght ear when he yrsrts the salon. Desprte this minor mrshap. the duo embark on a passronate romance. which comes to an abrupt halt when Jo's yrndrctrye mother Valdrne (Sally Freld‘r declares that Gilly (s her biological son. Taunted by the locals for hrs incestuous relationship wrth Jo. Grlly leaves town. Months later he learns that there has been a mrx-up on the genealogy front. and they aren't srblrngs after all. Is rt too late to prevent Jo's marrrage to a
crooked rnrllronarre (n Beaver. Oregon?
Produced by Peter and Bobby Farrelly. the men responsible for such bona frde cornrc classrcs as Dumb And Durrrber and There's Something About Mary. Say It lsn't So rs a shoddy imitation of the brothers masterx'rorks. Director J.B. Rogers (therr former colleague) and screenwrrters Peter Gaulke and Gerry Swallow have attempted to rcplrcate the grossout. scatologrcal humour. whrle neglectrrrg such essentrals as a tightly—plotted narratrye and engagrng clraracterrsatrorrs.
So. Klern shoves hrs hand up a cow's rectum. a routrne repeated later when he attempts to retrieve hrs wedding ring. Elsewhere. the hero rs rnasturbated by a cat. before gettrng to wear a beard»;.rnd~nroustache disguise fashioned from discarded female pubic hair. while Valdrne rubs a sandwich under her armprts ‘r/hen her cr'rppled husband requests more salt.
Drg McCaffey (Orlando Jonesr rs Just one of many ‘eccentrrcs' Gilly encounters on hrs lumberrng road trrp. A double amputee bush prlot wrth a Jrrnr Hendrix hair-(lo. motormouth Dig loses hrs artrfrCral lrmbs on three separate occasions. Hrs function. along with Jo's wlreelcharr-bound dad. rs srnrply to endure countless humrlratrons and degradatrons for our benefrt. The generosrty of sprrrt that co-exrsted alongsrde the bodrly function gags rn Marl. nas entrrely yanrshed here. Klern and Graham (the latter photographed rn leerrng close- trpSr are left utterly nrarooned by the rnanrty and offens‘rreness of this materral. whrch has run out 3f stearr‘ wrthrn the frrst frfteen rnrnutes. One to ayord. (Tom Dawsonr I General r'e/ease from Frr 75 Jun.
rookies are instructed in how to torture the
PEARL HARBOR 180 mins (12) O.
Trtanrc's blockbuster bluster has been blown out the crater by the Just as eprc rf even more drawn out indulgences of Pearl Harbor; But producer Jerry Bruckherrner and director Michael Bay. have made better rnovres for less money In the
Ben ‘l'he Ja'xr' Affleck and Josh 'The Eyebro'xrs' l-larnett play two lifelong buddies. Rafe and Danny. who end up rn the American arrforce as pilots, (be boys are based rr: Pearl l-larbor. Hawarr, but Rafe ‘.’o|unteers for a posting to (our the Battle of Britain. though not before falling for nurse Evelyn (Kate Beckrnsaler. When Hate :5; reported lost. rnrssrng-rn»actrcrr. Danny. the sporting pal he rs. steps rnto the breach and rnto the bed of the farr Evelyn. And then Just to bugger rt all up Rafe returns frorrr the dead" and the attack b, the Japanese gets in the way of sortrng love
Pearl Harbor rs pretty terrrble. Gladiator drd pro/e you can spend money and rrrake a great eprc. but thrs rs not that. not even a great blockbuster. It's at least an hour too long and Affleck rs SO harrtn‘y, l/lrss Prggy n‘ray bump rnto him at a tantrl, reunror‘r. ‘r'lartrng fer the “neeeeeeyooo .‘r.'/‘.*.r'.'r' and 'rat— a-tat-tat‘ of the Japanese warplanes (S a yaaaaaxrn. The Srckly development of Affleca and Harnett's characters rs
Texan accent, still produces an enjoyably charismatic, star-making turn in his first major role. (Tom Dawson)
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especraiﬁ (lull zrrr'l ’llffrrhlt to conventrate on .‘rhen ,nrr lanow there'v loads of aeroplanes and explosrcns flue.
Bay has uaselrnerl the unjrleasantness of .'.’;rf aparax American hrst’rr l‘;‘.'.’lrllf:l‘ ('1‘) (ltljrl‘rlfﬂl l)‘,’ llll:
,(sn't s“) lllllf,ll
lrlrn"; pr ,rrrt wt narrative closure. llzrs (5. (form- lr, tagging on a ",rrrmrlt: rrrssron' to! the rignarr‘rr, fill“; (rrct to he ccntuse’l .'.'llll the atom tronrlrrnr; Hiroshrrrra and Nagasak; here abserrtr, orchestrate/l to reaffirm that the r'xrnerrcan people. then and noxr. are (lead good at frghtrng. So no one should hare ‘.'/orr'rerl
about those (ferrous \Japs' In
the first place.
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Not an epic, not even a great blockbuster
' 2' Jrl'r 27.? THE LIST 27