NOBODY KNOWS (12A) 141 min on.
Insplr'erl l1, a real lite case. this poignant drama from .Japanese rl11ector'H1rr1ka.’u Kore-erla (Alt 2/ Lite. Dish/trier «oncerns a quartet of pre- teenage siblings, none of whom has
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:ocurxermav MONDOVINO (PG) 135mm 00.0
A ie:s'.1re|\, paced accumentar‘, a" .'.111en‘ak111g sounds aceut as appeahng as Clrrnmhg Granaaq‘l's non‘e tern‘entahons. But force. 1110 1s fess about the actual pr'oaucteo't process and e\.en.'thir1g about the peonle hehIno 1t — the tan‘lh disputes. the pol1t1cal battles and the clashes between old and nev. uncrlo att1tudes. It's reveahng and 1'a1ses c011r1tless 1ssues. yet rema1ns cons1stentlj, amusing.
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GRAPES, GRIPES AND BIG NOSES Jay Richardson catches up with JONATHAN NOSSITER, the filmmaker behind the fascinating winemaking expose, MONDOVINO.
‘Wine has always been an accurate reflection of the world around it because it’s always been an expression of civilisation and power,’ argues Jonathan Nossiter, whose low budget intrusion into the billion dollar business, the surprisingly entertaining documentary Mondovino, has already garnered the American director a Palme d’Or nomination and put many of the industry’s grands nez out of joint.
An award-winning sommelier, over three years and as many continents, Nossiter talked to a succession of winemakers, vintners and experts. From the family vineyards of Burgundy to the vast acres of Californian multinationals, he observed the conflicts between traditional and modern modes of production, artistry and commerce and the consequences of hegemonic, globalised taste.
‘Almost everyone, except for wine people, understands the film is about everything except wine. Small, independent winemakers seem encouraged by it. They see it as fundamentally positive and a voice of protest against the various forces hostile to them. But the powers that be in the wine world seem incredibly pissed off.
‘Since Cannes, I’ve been getting a lot of threatening letters from people in the film or those with business interests related to them. I was aware during shooting that many in this cosy, stuffy world were unused to
60 THE LIST 3—16 Dec 300.:
having an outside eye looking at them. I wanted to respond to the snobbery that obscures what’s magical about wine through humour and the outrageousness and eccentricity of these characters. I thought I could paint a portrait of the struggles of globalisation in a very human way.’
Nossiter began his career at the Newcastle Playhouse, moving to New York to be assistant director on Fatal Attraction. It was here he met the subject of his first film, Resident Alien, the émigré celebre Quentin Crisp.
‘He was very English of course, but Quentin struck me as the archetypal New Yorker. I usually make fiction films (Sunday, starring David Suchet, won the Grand Jury Prize at 1997’s Sundance Festival] and love working with actors, so I love the relationship between a camera and a human being who is larger than life. Everyone [in Mondovino] felt like that. Almost all had an incredibly powerful, natural relationship with the camera. It was astonishing.
‘What I find beautiful about the wine world and what I hope is in the ﬁlm is that people are never who you expect them to be. I never expected Michael Broadbent, Master of Wine at Christie’s, an incredibly proper old aristocrat, to be one of the most articulate voices for countercultural anti-globalisation. I was never sure where people’s sympathies lay until they started to talk. I went in as open as I could with everyone and tried to let the footage speak for itself.’
I Mondovino, UGC Glasgow and Edinburgh from Fri 70 Dec and Fi/mhouse Edinburgh from Fri 37 Dec. See review, right.
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industry. ‘.‘.1tt1 '11‘tat‘les1nclt1tl1nothe r‘apac1ous 1\lor111a'.x clan 11‘ Calzto'nia andacor1111111111st11a.» 111F1ance who fights to protect h1s to.-.'1':; nine‘,’artls from foreign llt'.t?t3lll‘t?lll. plus the tum1ng Hut‘ert .te Montrile 1n Berguntlt. shaking l11sxenerahle halrl head at the hegemom of 11.111111 ‘.‘.1111es' flooo'rng the market These un1form tastes are pr1mar1I1, hlantetl upon the f1lm's greatest character. consultant M1(:he| Rolland. a h1o, bullying pmsonahty on an apparent 1111sswn to see his personal 1_>reterences bottled t3\.'(?l‘,\‘.’lltrlt?.
Wh1le It's never 1n doubt that Nossrter's sympath1es l1e v.11th the l1ttle people — he’s not above call1ng on the March1oness Bona 1n Florence on the (lay of an anti-1:2,1prtal1st demo for example — he gives all hrs 1nter\.11e\.‘.11res ample trme anrl freedom to express or COndemn themselves. mak1no tor a patient. subtle yet compellrng l1|m mth a strong scent of humour and faInt mm of b1tterness. (Jay Rutharrlsoni I UGC. Glasgow and E11111.‘)urgi1 from Fri 70 Dec. Film/muse. Edinburgh from Fn 37 Dec. See interwew left.
SPY DRAMA TRIPLE AGENT (U) 116min coo
Based. accordmg to the Openmg caption, on a 'true unsolved mystery wrth the character names changed and some twrsts of plot of our 1nvent1on'. Tr1p/e Agent 1s a spy drama. though g1ven that It's x/rrtten and d1rected by octogenanan French auteur Er1c Rohmer. don't be Surpnsed by the absence of any ner/e—1angl1ng actron seguences.
Set 1n Parrs' Russen 1mm1grant commumty between 1936 and 1943. the f1lm concentrates on two Characters: Frodor Serge Renkoi. an