REVENGERS TRAGEDY (15) 109mm coco

As dark, vulgar, theatrical and murky as a Bloody Mary

Take Thomas Middleton‘s hideously violent A Revenger’s Tragedy, add mad maverick director Alex Cox (Repo Man, Sid and Nancy), a minuscule budget and Merseyside locations and it's either a Film Council-funded joke or the finest British movie of the year (with the possible exception of Michael Winterbottom’s forthcoming Code 46, also scripted by Frank Cottrell Boyce).

It’s 2011. Vindici (Christopher Eccleston) returns to Liverpool in the midst of a civil war between the north and the south. The city is held by the Duke (Derek Jacobi), a Karl Lagerfeld-lookalike tyrant and his three sons, the most villainous of whom is Lussurioso (Eddie lzzard). Vindici‘s only aim is to exact painful revenge on the Duke and his entire family for the murder of his wife, ten years previously, on their wedding day. To do this he must go deep into the camp of his enemy.

This is unlike anything else you will see this year. As dark, vulgar, theatrical and murky as a Bloody Mary, Cox certainly has few rivals in his extraordinary academic vision when it comes to cult filmmaking. This looks and feels like it's been siphoned straight from a bloodline that started with Ken Russell and carried on through Jarman and Greenaway.

Boyce's adaptation bounces off the walls, ably equipped with Middleton’s licentious language. The cast is phenomenal: Eccleston rips through every scene like a man possessed, lzzard could be scraped from the walls he’s so slimy, while Jacobi, Diana Quick, Antony Booth, Andrew Schofield, Margi Clarke and Carla Henry prove themselves to be more than a match for the material. This an irreverent, gory treat. (Paul Dale)

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HORROR REMAKE THE RING (15) 115min .00

Japanese horror tl‘riller Ring :R/ngu. has become a phenon‘enon since its release In 1998. spawning sexera: sequels. a l0l€‘.’|SlOll series. a graphic novel and even a line of dolls n‘orle'leo on the ghostly central figure. Noa‘.’ comes the ille‘.’llab|€‘ Hollyroori remake and fans of the original have one burning question; how (legraoeo lS the American copy?

The premise remains the same: an urban n‘yth ahom a mysterious VIOGOIGDQ that kills those who watch 2 exactly se.en days .ater. f/tot/seHant rlrr'ectOr Gore Verbrnskr and Art/hymn Road SCIGGH‘HHIQT Ehren Kruger have. how x'er. relocated the aCllOll to Seattle. where Naomi Watts' investigatne JOLlrt‘allSl finds herself '.'.’|lh. yes. or‘e week to solve the mysten,r after x-uatchlng the tape herself.

Whats different? Well. where R/ngt. largely relied on atmosphere fOr rts scares. The Ring tends to the blatant and literal. spelling Out much that remained eerily implicit in the orrgrhal,

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UNDER-COVER BROTHER (12) 81 min 0.

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URN/1A MOONLIGHT MILE (15) 117min oo

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