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Films In 1994

Tim Patterson just about manages to achieve the impossible in his 'epic-grammatic' bid to explain Japan in twenty words or less (give or take a few). Take-away impressions of a complex culture occur in the speedy collision of opinion personal experience and cliche. Somewhere in amongst the ... Read more
Somewhere on earth in a corner darkened by war two figures struggle to survive. Before all, duties are met. But the pull of life and the mag­netism of bodies sweep the two characters into a dance of forgetting. War seems to have no end thus only water, fire and love can clean the air in this ... Read more
... ... Vienna, Christmas Eve, 1993. A nineteen year old student randomly shoots several people. Framed as a mystery, 71 Fragments of a Chronology of Chance unfolds in five asymmetrical chapters that eschew conventional narrative strategies and simple character-driven psychology to decon­struct ... Read more
A young priest returns from Rome to attend his mother's funeral. His father has been bothered by the angels and finds his son's inability to explain things frustrating: "You left me and your mother to go chasing that meddling, long-haired, socialist, Jewish hippy and you don't even know what an ... Read more
... ... Too often, children only understand their par­ents when it's all too late. First time director Wu Nien-jen was long established as Taiwan's top screenwriter before being moved to make this tender tribute to his father, a miner who eventually succumbed to black lung disease. ... ... ... Read more
The spirit of commercialism pervades this Christmas Eve. In a busy bottle-shop, the tireless sales assistant quietly serves alcoholic solace to the cheerless customers. The menial work and her unfriendly employers incite humiliation. In the silent night revenge is afoot, justice eked. ... Read more
Dad rushes mum to the maternity ward, and leaves the four young kids at home, and Dad's also locked the dog in who's eating all the rocky road, but the kids are locked out, and the iron has been left on, and the babysitter can't get her dress out of the locked jammed car door, and the mayhem ... Read more
Athens has changed over the past few years. The neighbouring nations came to town when the curtain came down... Albanians, Romanians and others... but hey, that's life in the Balkans. Faraway neighbours one day, love-hate siblings and lovers the next. It's a lively mix and the streets are thankful ... Read more
A winged knife slices bread. This recurrent metaphor sets the film's context by juxtaposing the surreal with the mundane. While exploring notions such as romance and memory, the film's black and white photography shimmers and sparkles. ... Read more
The scent of betrayal and revenge laces the emotional air between two cellmates and the woman they both love A spiders web of deceit is finely rendered. (JS) ... Read more
On December 1,1942, a US airforce bomber crashed in the south-east corner of the Gulf of Carpenteria after a bombing raid over New Guinea. Four of the crew survived and, thinking they were near Cairns, naively set off on foot. Their story later made world headlines, but as it was playing out, as ... Read more
The Mississippi is one of the most rigorously controlled and engineered rivers in the world, yet in the summer of 1993 it suffered the worst flooding in its history. Fundamental questions are now being asked about whether river engi­neering really works or whether trying to tame a river ... Read more
A fascinating mixture of puppetry and computer animation techniques, based on a text by William S. Burroughs, with the music of John Cale. ... Read more
Butoh is confronting, sexual and serene Japanese dance. This film documents a selection of stunning performances from one of its best exponents, Carlotta Ikeda. Butoh is unlike any other form of dance tearing at the flesh of social constructs and laying bare the primal and spiritual bones of us ... Read more
Akiko-san has followed her husband's career path to Scarsdale in America and finds herself uncomfortably immersed in the simmering melting pot of expatriate Japanese culture. Here a housewife is either perm-san or temp-san (a reference to her style of residence-not hair). This 'work-doc' stirs it ... Read more
AIDS is now the leading cause of death among young Americans. One in five cases is diagnosed among young people. Alone Together humanises these stark statistics and allows the young voices to speak honestly and with dignity. The young people come from vastly diverse backgrounds, yet each is able to ... Read more
Behind the smile of a model lies a mind. But a cerebellum never got a centre-spread in Playboy. ... Read more
... ... Deadpan, fiercely cynical and extremely funny, Hal Hartley has cemented his reputa­tion as the US independent requiring the closest of scrutiny. This curious director creates a con­sistently fabulous feature every couple of years, wows an ever expanding audience and then ... Read more
A trip inside the mind of a serial killer, and the psychic investigator desperate to track him down and halt a murder spree. Angel Dust is a cat-and-mouse thriller that lives up to, and then surpasses, expectations. The American serial killer sub-genre has been run into the ground by shop-worn ... Read more
This is the story of a land far away where an evil king has passed a law against those subjects who are different. Banished from the kingdom, the exiles live happily enough in a cottage deep in the forest...until the King sends his horsemen to destroy them. Through a Brothers Grimm-like fairy tale ... Read more
Avondale New Zealand 1965. A young boy, Paul, contends with the profound events taking place in his life. This is a beautifully crafted, evocative and moving story of guilt, loss, love and smoked eels. ... Read more
Rosenberger uses found amateur footage. From 1939 as a protest against the indifference of its own positivist point of view. The original film was made by a man in which sandwiched between cosy scenes of his wife and baby on a sailing holiday he filmed a passing street parade with Hitler uniforms ... Read more
A stonemason engaged to decorate a Gothic cathedral is cursed and branded a heretic after he unwittingly incorporates the likeness of a witch into his work. ... In this superb example of contemporary clay animation the film maker draws on Mediaeval iconography to recreate Bruegel like scenes in a ... Read more
Rose, a fiesty rebel who thinks she knows it all-and wants it all, and Adrian, an introverted new­comer who has a more temperate but insecure approach to life, meet on the way to a rollerskating rink. The central story is the relationship between Rose and Adrian. Each week, when inter-school ... Read more
Coming straight from the Cannes Film Festival's Directors Fortnight, Back To Back, Face To Face is a razor-sharp comedy from the Chinese cinema's resident satirist, Huang Jianxin. ... The film is a hilarious contemporary comedy about bureaucracy liberated from the duty to serve the people. "Every ... Read more
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