Under different direction The Affair of the Neck/ace could have been a sexy costume drama with plenty of bite. Based on the controversial true story of Jeanne de la Motte Valois. a countess whose name was stripped from her by the royal family during the late 18th century it had all the right ingredients; to be a hit.

And with Oscar winner ffliéll‘y Swank at the helm and strong support from Simon Baker. you'd be forgiven for expecting a cut above your run o' the mill period drama fare. Sadly. under the wayward guidance of Charles Shyer ithink Father of the Bride. / Love 7rouh/e and similar roiii-coiii fodder) the film lacks the pace and indeed the script to maintain any real level of interest. Mildly engaging but |lff(3l|'y forgettable.

(Anna Millari

ri lRlLl l-R GET CARTER (18) 102min ooo

No. this isn't a re issue of the 19ft Michael Caine classic. this is lll fact the greatest sacrilege of all. A

118 THE LIST -'-

remake with Sylvester Stallone. Yeah. it's terrible. How dare they. Rut Get Carter again ~ has already had all the abuse it can take: it performed disastrously in the states and never even got theatrically released here.

lhe thing is. it's not actually that had. Seattle takes the place of Nei.‘-/(:astle. Stallone is wooden but exhibits a certain heroism and Mickey Rourke and Alan Cumming are entertaining support. Director Stephen Kay (The Last lirmel Coriiriirtted Suicide) keeps things seedy. dark and occasionally flashy. By Stallone's meagre standards this is a considerable return to form. (Paul Dalei



(15) 126min O.

Gil/NON ex colonel and ex-Vietnarii POW Robert Redford is sent to what appears to be the harshest military prison in the world. A vindictive James Gairdolfini rules with an iron fist. ordering ‘accideiital' shootings left. right and centre. lhere are some ridiculous sub~plots concerning the building of a wall until. eventually. a stoic Redford leads a full scale revolt.

Seemingly filmed in Grey -o-visioii l M at a leaden pace. this is a particularly uninspiring and dull movre. While criticising this particular military prison. there's still an outspoken advocating of hardlirie patriotism. ruthlessly pushing tired themes of sense of duty and codes of honour.

ll lenry Noi‘thiiiorer



At home with T&A

‘I love tits and ass,’ Paul Verhoeven once proclaimed. Where most filmmakers would settle for half light and a shy retreat at the appropriate moment, Verhoeven’s sexual shenanigans are so in your face that he might have wished his work were released in 30. As one critic said of Showgirls: ‘It isn’t a noun it’s an imperative.’ These three releases are from the Dutch filmmaker’s pre-Hollywood (Robocop, Basic Instinct, Starship Troopers, etc) European period.

Verhoeven’s first feature, 1971’s Business is Business (.0

), lacks this audacity, with

Verhoeven’s broad comedic Sledgehammer used to dilute the explicitness of this tale of Amsterdam prostitution. In maybe Verhoeven’s finest film, Turkish Delight (000.0), the broad comedy and sexual gusto come together perfectly, with Rutger Hauer's rebellious sculptor falling for the young Monique van de Ven as they wander around a wonderfully vivid, early 70$ hippie Amsterdam. But what makes this Verhoeven's best film is that the cynicism present in much of his work gets transformed into a reflective, earned melancholia in the film's closing 15


However, some reckon Soldier of Orange (.00


THE LONG GOOD FRIDAY (18) 114mm 00..

lhis is Bob l loskirrs' greatest screen moment as an i ast lrid l ondoii gangland

leader who decides to offer ‘hands across the ocean' to some American counterparts and gets right royally screwed. lt's mean and

moody and very nicely structured by director John MacKen/ie.

And it's dated in the same way lhe Sweeney has. Ill that it's all a little c\.rer\.'/i‘ouglit and shouty. Nothing of the social climate is ever examined except in terms of the glamour it brings l f()f§l’.lllf§ and Mir'ien as his me”. Still. this is a little gem from a very lean period in British filiiiiiiakiiig. ll’aul Dale)

(}()Ml DY RAT RACE (12) 107min O.

A pii/e of Si’rii is the carrot dangled in front of a randomly selected group .>f guests staying at a l as Vegas hotel. All they have to do is

) is the director’s best work. Winner of a Golden Globe, and the film Steven Spielberg believed showed the director was talented enough to go international, this has all the sort of cumbersome sequences that would please the boy wonder. A WWII story about a group of university friends thrust into resistance fighting and learning life’s hard lessons, Verhoeven seems to have the weight of a nation on his shoulders, and little of the perviness we expect. ‘I love my queen and country,’ is more or less the film’s message. For better or worse, he’s always been more at home with tits and ass. (Tony McKibbin) I All three tit/es are avar/ah/e through larta/i Video on DVD retail.

get to New Mexrco and claim the money. Maitre d' John ()leese is up to no good. lhe contestants ltalian (Rowan Atkinsonl. wacky mother lWhoopi (Soldbergr and hated football coach ((Iuba (‘ioodinngi fight tooth and nail to get the money

What is meant to be


an Ealii‘g—style farce with hilarious set pieces only adds up to occasional slapstick and the death of the collective chase 'novie. (Jane l lamiltoni


Yl VI A ONE AND TWO) (15) 173min 00000

Director Edward Yang is the master of this kind of meandering free form ode to lll()(f(}.'"‘i day laipei. Centering on one extended famin for close to three hours may ’ttii be (>\.'<2i‘\.<)iie's; idea of fun. but this is fascinating stuff. NJ. a partner :n a software company is haxrng a mid life crisis prompted or. ruining irtto l’lf‘) childhood sweetheart Sherry NJ's rnother in