Killing all the Bush babies
DOCUMENTARY FAHRENHEIT 9/1 1 (15) 122min 0000
The temperature at which freedom burns indeed. Shambolic, passionate and resolutely debate-provoking - Michael Moore’s latest addition to his unique oeuvre of films that detail the decay of the social (and socialist fabric) of his home country is something very special.
Moore sets out to recreate the events that have led us from the 2000 presidential election to the bloody occupation of Iraq. On a more intricate level he tries to prove, among other things, that the Bin Laden family had a close if convoluted business relationship with the Bush family, through the Carlyle Group.
Moore bangs home his sometimes complicated points with the skill of a rampageous harum scarum foreman. For anyone who has read Moore’s bestselling books Stupid White Men and Dude’s Where’s My Country there is really nothing new in here, and as with its predecessor Bowling For Columbine this is agitprop filmmaking so tied into its moment in history that it certainly would not bear a second viewing. There is, however, no denying the film’s emotional pull. This is closer in structure to the two rarely seen documentary features Moore made in the mid-19905, And Justice For All and The Big One (about the state of the US unions and its legal system respectively) than Bowling in its clear-headed ideology. Fahrenheit 9/11 may not have the ability to shift governments (despite all claims to the opposite agitprop art rarely does), it is still an incredibly powerful voice of opposition and protest. (Paul Dale)
I Selected release from Fri 76 Jul. See feature page 78.
DRAMA THE MIRACLE OF BERN (PG) 117min 0..
It is the summer of 1954 in a small mining town in West Germany and
1 1 -year-old Matthias (Louis Klamroth) is football crazy. The great German footballer Helmut Rahn (Sasha GOpel) has taken the eager boy to his heart as his own personal mascot for the games that are to lead up to that year's World Cup competition. But suddenly Matthias' confused, angry father (Peter Lohmeyer) comes home from a Soviet POW camp and the chances
COMING OF AGE DRAMA BLUE GATE CROSSING (12A) 85min .0.
Written and directed by Taiwanese filmmaker Yee Chin-Yen. Blue Gate Crossing is a low key love triangle. unfolding amongst a trio of naive pupils at a Taipei high school. Lin Yuezhen (Shu Hui Liang) has a crush on champion swimmer Zhang Shihao (Bo Lin Chen) and she asks her best friend Meng Kerou (Lun Mei Guey) to pass on her messages of romantic interest. But Kerou is physically attracted to Yuezhen. and Zhang himself soon falls for the tomboyish go-between.
No Swimf<ain-style vengeful psychopaths here; just a tender. delicate study of adolescent sexual confusion. with the teenagers struggling to articulate the feelings which seem to them to be so ovenivhelming. Visually there are echoes of another Taiwanese dlrector Edward Yang in the precision of the framing and in the way Lee shoots his
(18) 81 min 0
Celluloid car wrecks don't come much worse Highwaymen, a ludicrous horror thriller In which a disabled hit and run driver (Colm Feore) scours the freeways of America picking off victims with his customised Cadillac. A five- lane pile-up of a movie. it stars an embarrassed looking Jim Caviezel (yes. Jesus) as the vigilante who's on the psycho's trail with the help of
A delicate study of adolescent sexual confusion
characters from a distance. It's an undeniany slight affair. yet it has its own muted charms. thanks in part to its plaintive atmosphere and to a fine performance from newcomer Guey — excelling as the girl solemnly attempting to keep her emotions under wraps. (Tom Dawson)
I Film/louse. Edinburgh from
Fri 76 Jul.
former Party of Five love interest Rhona Mitra. Once upon a time. director Robert Harmon gave us the terrifying highway horror of ‘80s cult classic The Hitcher but. judging by this debacle. he must have lost his talent somewhere out on Route
666. (Jamie Russell) I Out now on selected release.
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS
(PG) 120min O.
Repackaging Jules Verne's Victorian novel as a vehlcle for East-West martial arts superstar Jackie Chan and British comedian Steve Coogan might not have been such a bad thing if the filmmakers hadn't lazily. cynically repeated the formula of Chan’s two previous 19th century outings. Shanghai Noon and Knights. Coogan stands in for Chan‘s comlc foil in the Shanghai films. Owen Wilson, but he leaves the chop socky star to perform hls trademark slapstlck acrobatics against a picaresgue if historically Inaccurate backdrop.
Fidelity to Verne is largely abandoned. The eccentric. Indomitable splrlt of Verne's Vlctoriana is merely aped. recasting Phileas Fogg (Coogan) as an inventor of Wacky Races-style gadgets (he was a 'man of means' in the book and the 19608 film adaptation) and by Jim Broadbent. playing Oueen Vic's
scientific advisor and Fogg‘s nemesis. Lord Kelvin. being monotonously blustery. Worse. this isn't funny. Coogan's a talented comic. but he can't elicit
of getting to the tournament look highly unlikely.
Senke Wortmann's heart warming take on what is viewed by many as the event that kicked off Germany's economic miracle (the West German team won the World Cup that year) has unsurprisingly done tremendous business in the reunified Deutsche Republic (as will the forthcoming film set around the 1966 World Cup may do in England).
The detail and acting is everything
Germany’s 1954 World Cup victory remembered
here (if you can ignore the pathetic sub—plot involving a spOrtswriter and his hideous wife). the final recreation of that classic game is just great and Knut Hartwig's turn as real life downtrodden coach Fritz Walter is flawless. A minor delight. make sure you stay until the end of the credits. (Paul Dale)
I Selected release from Fri 7 6 Jul.
laughs from a pedestrian script. Chan (playing a Chinese Passepartout) fairs better. choreographing his own stunts with predictany entertaining results. Nevertheless. it's just so much hot air. (Miles Fielder)
I General release from Fri 9 Jul. See preview, page 28.
So much hot air
8 1”.) Jul 2001
THE LIST 31