THRILLER BAISE-MOI (18) 87min .0
Flaw anarchic energy
British audiences can now make up their our own minds as to the virtues of this controversial French exploitation drama. Based on a novel by Virginie Despentes, and directed by her and Coralie Trinh Thi, Baise-Moi depicts the
I AM SAM
(12) 132min .00
Sean Penn deservedly received his third Oscar nomination for his portrayal of a mentally challenged father fighting to retain custody of his daughter. and now that the film has finally opened here we can judge for ourselves whether or not he was robbed at the Oscars.
Penn plays Sam Dawson. a cleaner at Starbucks with the mental age of a child. who is left to raise his daughter. Lucy (impressive newcomer Dakota Fanning) by himself when the mother deserts them both after the birth. However. when Lucy starts to surpass Sam in her mental abilities. the authorities step in and Sam turns to brittle lawyer Rita Harrison (Michelle Pfeiffer) in a bid to gain custody.
Penn's performance is undeniably showy. but nonetheless impressive — think Daniel Day Lewis rather than Dustin Hoffman. Pfeiffer is great too
and there's good support from the likes of Laura Dern and Dianne Weist. The film is definitely manipulative but. if you're prepared to go along with that. it's very enjoyable. lAm Sam is also extremely funny in places and features a Superny integrated sOundtrack of Beatles covers. iMatthew Turner)
I General release from Fri 70 May.
sex-and-killing spree of two nihilistic young women: rape victim Manu (Raffaela Anderson) and prostitute Nadine (Karen Bach). Fleeing Paris - both the fugitives have separately committed murders - they head for the coast, sharing the philosophy that ‘the more you have sex, the less you think, the better you feel’, and decide to ‘let rip the motherfucker side of our soul’. A man who has the misfortune to want to wear a condom before intercourse is kicked to death by Manu and Nadine, whilst the denizens of a provincial sex-club are brutally laid to waste by the gun-toting bad girls (one victim is shot through his rectum, the bullet exiting his body though the mouth). Eventually the police decide to bring the outlaws to justice. Blending real sex - Anderson and Bach come from professional hardcore backgrounds - and deliberately stylised violence, Baise-Moi constantly references other movies, whilst being aware of its own shortcomings. Having slain a gun-shop assistant, Manu laments: ‘Fuck we’re useless. Where are the witty lines? People are dying and we’ve got to be up to it.’ Cruder shot on digital video, and accompanied by a thrash metal soundtrack, Baise-Moi lacks aesthetic finesse and also the intellectual rigour of, say, Catherine Breillat’s explorations of female sexuality, but its raw anarchic energy is undeniable. (Tom Dawson) I Selected release from Fri 70 May. See preview. page 28.
POLITICAL SATIRE NO MAN’S LAND (15) 98min 0...
And they say satire is dead. Wherever the vanity of humankind can create the kind of suffering we've seen in YugosIaVia over the last decade. satire would seem to be a vital link to reality. Attacking the media distOrtions and international power games at the centre of the West's intervention in the troubled lands of the Setithern Slavs. this film doesn't spare the warring parties either. taking no sides in an insane conflict.
This biting dark comedy by Danis Tanowc is testament to sheer the stupidity of the whole affair. Set in the middle of the Bosnian conflict. No Man '3 Land sees two Bosnian soldiers wander into said territory. formerly a rather idyllic piece of farm land. but now a grim venue for trench warfare. Two Bosnian soldiers (Branko Dluric and Rene Bitanaiacl wander off among the barbed Wire. only to find themselves taking shelter in a dugout in the middle of a bombardment. One finishes up wounded and immobilised. lying on an anti-personnel mine that will kill all in its radius. while the other finds himself confronting an enemy soldier (Filip Suvegovic). These two
so THE LIST 9—29, Ma, 2%?
Makes you wince as you giggle
bicker like heavily armed children. before a good deal of political skulduggery brings in the media in the form of a ruthless British television correspondent (Katrin Cartlidge) and a venal and ambitious British UN general (Simon Callowl. Can the situation be resolved? Well. not by any of this lot. Tanovic spares no one. and the comedy is of the kind to make yOu Wince as you giggle. His film creates a metaphor of the madness of an unresolvable situation. and comes recommended to folk who want to see the bigger picture. (Steve Cramer) I GFT Glasgow; Edinburgh, Cameo from Fri I7 May.
(15) 104min .000
Red in tooth and claw. this British werewolf movie delivers flesh-ripping gore. edge-of—the-seat suspense and wicked black humour. leaving one drained but thoroughly entertained. Yet it never shod-changes its deftly d awn characters. a squad of British soldiers on manoeuvres in the Scottish Highlands who fall prey to some lanky lycanthropes. The fur really starts to fly when the squad. rescued by local lassie Megan iEinma Cleasbyl. takes refuge in a remote farmhouse.
Sgt. Harry Wells (Sean Per‘iweel is their nominal leader, but when his guts get ripped open, it‘s Rifleman Cooper iKeVin McKiddI who takes charge. Out of radio contact and low on ammo. they improwse booby-traps and weaponry to keep their lupine attackers at bay. The threat from withOut is matched by the tenSions within. where secrecy and suspici0n start to tear the survivors apart.
Pitting down-to-earth soldiers against down-and-dirty werewolves. director Neil Marshall strips away any Superflu0us Supernatural dressing. Ironically. the scarier the film gets. the funnier it becomes — you laugh out IOud (US! to release the tension. A horror film which tears at the flesh till it exposes the funny bone. iNigeI F oydi I General release from Fri 70 May.
Tears at the funny bone
DRAMA DELBARAN (PG) 96min 0...
There's an amusing moment in Iranian filmmaker Abolfazl Jalili's latest film where someone asks an Afghanistan man who's marrying an Iranian woman how they communicate considering he doesn't speak Farsi. His answer is simple: he loves her. Is this an example of autocritique and at the same time self-explanation? Of all Iranian filmmakers Jalili seems to let beautifully rendered images speak more loudly than words. and allows the visual element to take precedence over narrative development: the present moment is what counts.
Thus. as in the director's earlier Edinburgh International Film Festivalscreened Dance Of Dust. Sympathy's often elicited in the immediate action. In one scene we see the young Afghan refugee at the film's centre using all his strength to lift a cluster of bushes onto his back. In another sequence. Kaim crawls under a vehicle and places a boulder that serves as a Jack. Kaim might be a second-class citizen but Jalili illustrates his status not in manipulative techniques. but in the way that Kaim is a jack—of-all trades. some of them risky. others thorougth arduous.
If Jalili Justifies the Subjective plea of his own closing comment ‘I dedicate this film to all the children of war' it lies in the relative obiectnity of the images he's created. (Tony Mckibbin;
I Film/rouse. Edinburgh from Fri l7 , ay.
Images speak louder than words