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China: A Century of Revolution(中国,革命的世纪) (中国,革命的世纪)
DISC ONE Part One: China in Revolution 1911–1949 (1989) DISC TWO Part Two: The Mao Years 1949–1976 (1994) DISC THREE Part Three: Born Under the Red Flag 1976–1997 (1997) A film by Sue Williams co-produced by Kathryn Dietz

China: A Century of Revolution is a six-hour tour de force journey through the country's most tumultuous period. First televised on PBS, this award-winning documentary series presents an astonishingly candid view of a once-secret nation with rare archival footage, insightful historical commentary and stunning eyewitness accounts from citizens who struggled through China's most decisive century. China in Revolution charts the pivotal years from the birth of the new republic to the establishment of the PRC, through foreign invasions, civil war and a bloody battle for power between Mao Zedong and Chiang Kai-shek. The Mao Years examines the turbulent era of Mao's attempts to forge a "new China" from the war-ravaged and exhausted nation. Born Under the Red Flag showcases China's unlikely transformation into an extraordinary hybrid of communist-centralized politics with an ever-expanding free market economy. Monumental in scope, China: A Century of Revolution is critical viewing for anyone interested in this increasingly powerful and globally influential country.

Slumdog Millionaire(贫民窟的百万富翁)2008 (贫民窟的百万富翁)
A gaudy, gorgeous rush of color, sound and motion, "Slumdog Millionaire," the latest from the British shape-shifter Danny Boyle, doesn't travel through the lower depths, it giddily bounces from one horror to the next. A modern fairy tale about a pauper angling to become a prince, this sensory blowout largely takes place amid the squalor of Mumbai, India, where lost children and dogs sift through trash so fetid you swear you can smell the discarded mango as well as its peel, or could if the film weren't already hurtling through another picturesque gutter. Mr. Boyle, who first stormed the British movie scene in the mid-1990s with flashy entertainments like "Shallow Grave" and "Transporting," has a flair for the outré. Few other directors could turn a heroin addict rummaging inside a rank toilet bowl into a surrealistic underwater reverie, as he does in "Transporting," and fewer still could do so while holding onto the character's basic humanity. The addict, played by Ewan McGregor, emerges from his repulsive splish-splashing with a near-beatific smile (having successfully retrieved some pills), a terrible if darkly funny image that turns out to have been representative not just of Mr. Boyle's bent humor but also of his worldview: better to swim than to sink. Swimming comes naturally to Jamal (the British actor Dev Patel in his feature-film debut), who earns a living as a chai-wallah serving fragrant tea to call-center workers in Mumbai and who, after a series of alternating exhilarating and unnerving adventures, has landed in the hot seat on the television game show "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire." Yet while the story opens with Jamal on the verge of grabbing the big prize, Simon Beaufoy's cleverly kinked screenplay, adapted from a novel by Vikas Swarup, embraces a fluid view of time and space, effortlessly shuttling between the young contestant's past and his present, his childhood spaces and grown-up times. Here, narrative doesn't begin and end: it flows and eddies — just like life. By all rights the texture of Jamal's life should have been brutally coarsened by tragedy and poverty by the time he makes a grab for the television jackpot. But because "Slumdog Millionaire" is self-consciously (perhaps commercially) framed as a contemporary fairy tale cum love story, or because Mr. Boyle leans toward the sanguine, this proves to be one of the most upbeat stories about living in hell imaginable. It's a life that begins in a vast, vibrant, sun-soaked, jampacked ghetto, a kaleidoscopic city of flimsy shacks and struggling humanity and takes an abrupt, cruel turn when Jamal (Ayush Mahesh Khedekar), then an exuberant 7, and his cagier brother, Salim (Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail), witness the murder of their mother (Sanchita Choudhary) by marauding fanatics armed with anti-Muslim epithets and clubs.


Cast into the larger, uncaring world along with another new orphan, a shy beauty named Latika (Rubina Ali plays the child, Freida Pinto the teenager), the three children make their way from one refuge to another before falling prey to a villain whose exploitation pushes the story to the edge of the unspeakable. Although there's something undeniably fascinating, or at least watchable, about this ghastly interlude — the young actors are very appealing and sympathetic, and the images are invariably pleasing even when they should not be — it's unsettling to watch these young characters and, by extension, the young nonprofessionals playing them enact such a pantomime. It doesn't help even if you remember that Jamal makes it out alive long enough to have his 15 televised minutes. It's hard to hold onto any reservations in the face of Mr. Boyle's resolutely upbeat pitch and seductive visual style. Beautifully shot with great sensitivity to color by the cinematographer Anthony Dod Mantle, in both film and digital video, "Slumdog Millionaire" makes for a better viewing experience than it does for a reflective one. It's an undeniably attractive package, a seamless mixture of thrills and tears, armchair tourism (the Taj Mahal makes a guest appearance during a sprightly interlude) and crackerjack professionalism. Both the reliably great Irrfan Khan ("A Mighty Heart"), as a sadistic detective, and the Bollywood star Anil Kapoor, as the preening game-show host, run circles around the young Mr. Patel, an agreeable enough if vague centerpiece to all this coordinated, insistently happy chaos. In the end, what gives me reluctant pause about this bright, cheery, hard-to-resist movie is that its joyfulness feels more like a filmmaker's calculation than an honest cry from the heart about the human spirit (or, better yet, a moral tale). In the past Mr. Boyle has managed to wring giggles out of murder ("Shallow Grave") and addiction ("Transporting"), and invest even the apocalypse with a certain joie de vivre (the excellent zombie flick "28 Days Later"). He's a blithely glib entertainer who can dazzle you with technique and, on occasion, blindside you with emotion, as he does in his underrated children's movie, "Millions." He plucked my heartstrings in "Slumdog Millionaire" with well-practiced dexterity, coaxing laughter and sobs out of each sweet, sour and false note.

No.2 Slumdog Millionaire(贫民窟的百万富翁)2008 (贫民窟的百万富翁)
An orphaned Mumbai slum kid tries to change his life by winning TV's 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?' in a feelgood fable from director Danny Boyle and the writer of The Full Monty, Simon Beaufoy Jamal Malik ('Skins' star Dev Patel) is being beaten by Mumbai police for allegedly cheating on hit TV show 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?' One question away from the ultimate 20 million rupee prize, no one, including slick show host Prem (Anil Kapoor), believes a chai wallah (teaboy) like Jamal could know all the answers. As the tough inspector (Irfan Khan) replays Jamal's appearance on the show, it's revealed that each question corresponds to a specific life lesson from Jamal's tragic past. Raised in abject poverty in Mumbai's grimmest slum along with older brother Salim, then orphaned by a Hindu mob attack, Jamal and Salim are forced to fend for themselves on the streets through opportunistic petty crime. They pick up a young girl, fellow orphan Latika (Freida Pinto), escape the clutches of a vicious Fagin-like crime boss, lose Latika, and continue their picaresque adventures, one step ahead of the law. As adolescents, however, Salim becomes entranced by a life of crime and Latika's unexpected return sets brother against brother. Will Jamal salvage his girl, his fortune and his life on 'Millionaire'? Adapted by Full Monty writer Simon Beaufoy from Vikas Swarup's hit novel 'Q&A', Slumdog is an underdog tale. Beaufoy's lively screenplay scampers after Swarup's self-consciously Dickensian storytelling tradition, and is even built around the 'Millionaire' show, as iconic a symbol of Western capitalist entertainment as exists. Director Danny Boyle and cinematographer Anthony Dod Mantle have evidently immersed themselves in India's sensory overload. The film revels in the sub-continent's chaotic beauty and raging colours, from Mumbai shantytowns to Agra's regal Taj Mahal. The thrillingly off-the-cuff digital imagery reflects a nation in a state of explosive flux, loo ming skyscrapers erupting from wasteland, slum kids turning into overnight millionaires through the kiss of television. The film's uniquely vibrant, headlong 21st century rush is that of the infinite possibilities of modern India itself.


Slumdog's such a crowd-pleaser that some critics might brand it Boyle's best since Trainspotting . It even echoes a couple of that film's classic set pieces, notably a slum chase reminiscent of Renton and Co's opening Edinburgh dash and a lavatorial incident so stomach-churning (yet hilarious), it makes Trainspotting's infamous toilet scene seem like Ewan McGregor took an Evian bath. In fact, the likable Boyle has been on great form for some time - 28 Days Later revamped the zombie movie, Millions is perhaps the best kids film of recent years. No other current British director makes such thrillingly current (all his films are set in either the present or future), kinetic, inherently visual films and proper recognition is long overdue - though, true to form, he's insistent here on crediting co-director Loveleen Tandan, whose major contribution seems to have been unearthing the wonderfully naturalistic kids to play Jamal, Salim and Latika. Verdict A spirited underdog fable marinated in modern India's melting pot. Danny Boyle's still the master of spices.

Tess(苔丝 苔丝)1979 苔丝
Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles, which Roman Polanski has turned into a lovely, lyrical, unexpectedly delicate movie, might at first seem to be the wrong project for Mr. Polanski in every way. As a new biography of the director reports, when Tess was shown at the Cannes Film Festival, the press pointed nastily and repeatedly to the coincidence of Mr. Polanski's having made a film about a young girl's seduction by an older man, while he himself faced criminal charges for a similar offense. This would certainly seem to cast a pall over the project. So would the fact that Hardy's novel is so very deeply rooted in English landscapes, geographical and sociological, while Mr. Polanski was brought up in Poland. Finally, Tess of the D'Urbervilles is so quintessentially Victorian a story that a believable version might seem well out of any contemporary director's reach. But if an elegant, plausible, affecting Tess sounds like more than might have been expected of Mr. Polanski, let's just say he has achieved the impossible. In fact, in the process of adapting his style to suit such a sweeping and vivid novel, he has achieved something very unlike his other work. Without Mr. Polanski's name in the credits, this lush and scenic Tess could even be mistaken for the work of David Lean. In a preface to the later editions of Tess of the D'Urbervilles, Mr. Hardy described the work as "an impression, not an argument." Mr. Polanski has taken a similar approach, removing the sting from both the story's morality and its melodrama. Tess Durbeyfield, the hearty country lass whose downfall begins when her father learns he had noble forebears, is sent to charm her rich D'Urberville relations. She learns that they aren't D'Urbervilles after all; instead, they have used their new money to purchase an old name. Tess charms them anyhow, so much that Alec D'Urberville, her imposter cousin, seduces and impregnates her. The seduction, like many of the film's key scenes, is presented in a manner both earthy and discreet. In this case, the action is set in a forest, where a gentle mist arises from the ground and envelops Tess just around the time when she is enveloped by Alec. Alec, as played by Leigh Lawson, is a slightly wooden character, unlike Angel Clare, Tess's later and truer lover, played with supreme radiance by Peter Firth. Long after Tess has borne and buried her illegitimate child, she finds and falls in love with this spirited soul mate. But when she marries Angel Clare and is at last ready to reveal the secret of her past, the story begins hurtling toward its final tragedy. When Tess becomes a murderer, the film offers its one distinctly Polanski-like moment—but even that scene has its fidelity to the novel. A housemaid listening at a door hears a "drip, drip, drip" sound, according to Hardy. Mr. Polanski has simply interpreted this with a typically mischievous flourish. Of all the unlikely strong points of Tess, which opens today for a weeklong engagement at the Baronet and which will reopen next year, the unlikeliest is Nastassja Kinski, who plays the title role. Miss Kinski powerfully resembles the young Ingrid Bergman, and she is altogether ravishing. But she's an odd choice for Tess: not quite vigorous enough, and maybe even too beautiful. She's an actress who can lose her magnetism and mystery if she's given a great deal to do (that was the case in an earlier film called Stay As You Are). But here, Mr. Polanski makes perfect use of her. Instead of a driving force, she becomes an echo of the land and the society around her, more passive than Hardy's Tess but linked


just as unmistakably with natural forces. Miss Kinski's Tess has no inner life to speak of. But Mr. Polanski makes her surroundings so expressive that her placidity and reserve work very beautifully. Even at its nearly three-hour running time, Mr. Polanski's Tess cannot hope for anything approaching the range of the novel. But the deletions have been made wisely, and though the story loses some of its resonance it maintains its momentum. There are episodes—like one involving Tess's shabby boots and Mercy Chant, the more respectable girl who expects to marry Angel—that don't make the sense they should, and the action is fragmented at times. That's a small price to pay for the movie's essential rightness, for its congruence with the mood and manner of the novel. Mr. Polanski had to go to Normandy and rebuild Stonehenge to stage his last scene, according to this same biography. As is the case throughout his Tess, the results were worth the trouble.

The Pursuit of Happiness(当幸福来敲门)2006 (当幸福来敲门)
With a title like The Pursuit of Happiness, you expect the characters to get to the promised land. They do, but if the journey matters more than the destination, this is a movie to skip. The Pursuit of Happyness is long, dull, and depressing. It expands into two hours a story that could have been told more effectively in one. This is not the feel-good movie of the season unless you believe that a few moments of good cheer can redeem 110 minutes of gloom. Sitting through The Pursuit of Happiness is a chore. Downbeat movies aren't inherently bad (in fact, many are powerful), but this one provides artificial characters in contrived circumstances. How is it that movies "inspired by a real story" often feel more fake than those fully embedded in the realm of fiction? Will Smith has generated Oscar buzz for his portrayal of Chris Gardner, the real-life guy whose rags-to-riches story forms the basis of the movie. (Impoverished guy becomes capitalist poster boy.) While it's fair to say that this is one of the best straight performances of Smith's career, it didn't blow me away. In and of itself, the acting, while effective, is not Best Actor material, but it wouldn't surprise me if the movie's prestige factor and Smith's popularity earn him a nod. Meanwhile, his female co-star, Thandie Newton, isn't going to be considered for any award. Newton spends about 90% of her screen time doing an impersonation of a harpy: screeching, bitching, and contorting her face into unpleasant expressions. Smith's son, Jaden, is okay as the movie's child protagonist; it's unclear whether his occasional deficiencies are the result of his acting, Steven Conrad's writing, or Gabriele Muccino's direction, but there's not much personality behind the cute features and curly hair. Chris Gardner (Will Smith) is down on his luck. It's 1981 San Francisco and his self-employed business of selling portable bone density scanners isn't doing well. His wife, Linda (Thandie Newton), does nothing but yell at him and give him a cold shoulder, and the lack of domestic harmony is impacting the disposition of his beloved son, Christopher (Jaden Christopher Syre Smith). That's when Chris' life turns into a country song. His wife leaves. He is evicted from his home. He goes to jail, neither passing GO nor collecting a much-needed $200. He gets hit by a car. He is robbed. He makes his son cry. He alienates a friend over $14. He gets to spend a night in the cleanest public restroom in the history of public restrooms. But there's a bright spot, although you need a dark-adapted eye to find it. Despite having no experience, Chris applies to enter an internship program at Dean Witter. He would appear to have no chance to get in until he amazes the head of the program (Brian Howe) by solving the Rubik's Cube puzzle in the back of a taxi cab. It's a blessing that the movie doesn't use a stock villain to impede Chris' herky-jerky trip to the top, because that would have tipped the movie into the empire of the unwatchable. However, the lack of a strong conflict makes the two-hour running length seem very long. Thankfully, there's also not much in the way of overt melodrama, but that could be a byproduct of having characters who are not deeply realized and have narrow emotional ranges. It's tough to connect with Chris and his son. Although they are played by a real-life father and son, there's no chemistry between them. We're constantly told how desperately Chris loves Christopher, but it takes a long time before we begin to buy it. Most of the time, Christopher seems like an annoying piece of baggage that Chris drops off at daycare when he has other things to do. The film's most compelling scenes are those that show Chris struggling to enter the rat race. Granted, this is no Glengarry Glen Ross, but it shows the pressure these salesmen are under and how important the contact lists are. In the overall scheme of things, however, these sequences are background noise.


They are neither plentiful nor lengthy. The movie spends more time following Chris on his futile sales rounds for the bone density scanner than it does accompanying him during his broker training. The moral of the story is as trite as they come: don't let anyone convince you to give up on your dreams. Disney animated films have been doing this better for decades. The Pursuit of Happyness concludes with a caption that tells us what happens to Chris after the end of the movie; it promises a better story than the one we have just watched. The film is also marred by a persistent (although not verbose) voiceover that adds nothing to the story while frequently jerking us out of the experience of watching it. I don't need Will Smith telling me: "This part of the story is called 'riding the bus.'" This is the English-language debut of Gabriele Muccino, who has made a name for himself in Italian cinema. The Pursuit of Happiness has the kind of slow, drab tone one occasionally associates with a director raised outside of the Hollywood system. What can be an asset in some circumstances is a detriment in this one. The Pursuit of Happiness isn't enjoyable, and its meager pleasures, including the eventual "payoff," aren't enough to justify the unrelenting misery. The Pursuit of Happiness is competently made and gets lots of the details right, but when it comes to the emotional core of the story, it loses the pursuit and misses the "happiness."

No.2 The Pursuit of Happiness(当幸福来敲门)2006 (当幸福来敲门)
Will Smith plays a San Francisco medical equipment salesman who resolves to change his life and become a stockbroker, but is made homeless in the process The sort of film the Oscars are designed for, The Pursuit Of Happiness should induce nausea. There's the cheesy dialogue ("You want something, go get it - period!"). There's the annoying title, with its deliberate misspelling (a reference to a slogan seen on a wall that becomes the film's mantra). And there's the father and son acting combo of Will Smith and seven-year-old Jaden, who between them serve unapologetically as an advert for the American dream. Yet thanks to Italian director Gabriele Muccino, in his first Hollywood outing, the film holds firm. Set in San Francisco in 1981, at a time when the Rubik's Cube is sweeping the nation, the film is inspired by the real-life story of one Chris Gardner (Smith). A struggling Bay Area salesman, Gardner's product is a "portable bone density scanner", a box of tricks which he believes doctors will soon be clamouring for. But luck deserts Gardner alongside his wife Linda (Newton) and a hippie girl steals one of his scanners. Left with custody of his five-year-old son Christopher (Smith), Gardner is desperate to be a good father, as he didn't know his own Dad until he was 28. A chance encounter with a stockbroker inspires Gardner to change career and secure an internship at a brokerage. Remarkably, he manages to get onto the six-month course, but it's a gamble. "There was no salary," he says. "Not even a reasonable promise of a job." Forced to sell his remaining machines on the weekends, he and Christopher live on the poverty line, and are evicted after Gardner is hit with a crippling tax bill. Looked at cynically, the film boasts one of those heavyweight performances that Hollywood A-list stars occasionally offer in a quest for cachet. In this case Smith lets his hair go grey to convince us that this is no vanity project. But bonding convincingly (as you might expect) with his own son on screen, Smith delivers his most compelling performance since Ali in 2001. Playing Gardner as a decent, honest man who refuses to let life grind him down, it's an inspirational turn. With Muccino (best known for 2001's L'Ultimo Bacio, which was remade in the US in 2005 as The Last Kiss) in charge, Smith's acting is shorn of the usual high-energy tics that have blighted his work. So enchanting is the performance that it overshadows the film's more problematic and manipulative moments, notably the contention that capitalism holds the key to happiness. But this is Will Smith doing Kramer Vs. Kramer and the film never allows us to contemplate its dubious nature for too long. Verdict Between Muccino's sensitive direction and Smith and son's expertly calibrated performances, The Pursuit Of Happiness manages to win you over with a flurry of feel good emotions.


Roman Holiday(罗马假日)1953 (罗马假日)
There has been a long hiatus between that day when history wore a rose, when princesses and knights-errant in mufti could get into a lovely scrape or two and when the movies could do something about it. That day apparently has passed. For "Roman Holiday," which arrived at the Music Hall yesterday, is a royal lark in the modern idiom about a regal but lonely young thing who has her moment of happiness with an adventurous newspaper man. It is a contrived fable but a bittersweet legend with laughs that leaves the spirits soaring. Call "Roman Holiday" a credit to William Wyler's versatility. The producer-director, who has been expending his not inconsiderable talents on worthy but serious themes, is herein trying on the mantle of the late Ernst Lubitsch and making it fit fairly well. He certainly is dealing with the formal manners of ultra-high society and, if the unpolished common man is very much in evidence, too, it does not matter because his cast and the visually spectacular backgrounds of Rome, in which this romantic excursion was filmed, also are necessary attributes to this engaging story. Tender, Amusing Yarn A viewer with a long memory might recall some plot similarities between "Roman Holiday" and "It Happened One Night." This is not important. Mr. Wyler and his associates have fashioned a natural, tender and amusing yarn about the heiress to the throne of a mythical kingdom who is sick unto death of an unending schedule of speeches, greetings and interviews attendant on her goodwill tour and who suddenly decides to escape from these bonds of propriety. Her accidental meeting with Joe Bradley, the American journalist, and the night she spends in his apartment are cheerful, untarnished and perfectly believable happenstances in which romance understandably begins to bloom. The director and his scenarists, Ian McLellan Hunter and John Dighton, have sensibly used the sights and sounds of Rome to dovetail with the facts in their story. Since the newspaper man is anxious to get the exclusive rights to the princess' adventures in the Eternal City, and since he is also anxious to keep her in the dark as to his identity, a Cook's Tour of the Eternal City is both appropriate and visually edifying. This is not a perfunctory trip. Mr. Wyler and his camera crew have distilled chuckles as well as a sightseeing junket in such stops as the Princess getting a new coiffure; a perfectly wild motorscooter ride through Roman streets, alleys and market places winding up with a session in a police station, and an uproarious dance on one of the barges on the Tiber that terminates with the princess and her swain battling and escaping from the sleuths sent to track her down. The cameras also have captured the raucous sounds and the varied sights of a bustling, workaday Rome; of sidewalk cafes; of the Pantheon; the Forum; and of such various landmarks as the Castel Sant' Angelo and the rococo, mirrored grandeur of the Colonna, Brancaccio and Barberini Palazzi. Although she is not precisely a newcomer to films Audrey Hepburn, the British actress who is being starred for the first time as Princess Anne, is a slender, elfin and wistful beauty, alternately regal and childlike in her profound appreciation of newly-found, simple pleasures and love. Although she bravely smiles her acknowledgment of the end of that affair, she remains a pitifully lonely figure facing a stuffy future. Gregory Peck makes a stalwart and manly escort and lover, whose eyes belie his restrained exterior. And it is altogether fitting that he eschews the chance at that exclusive story considering the circumstances. Eddie Albert is excellent as the bewildered, bewhiskered and breezy photographer who surreptitiously snaps the unwitting princess on her tour. Hartley Power, as the bureau chief of Mr. Peck's news agency; Paolo Carlini, as an amorous barber; Claudio Ermelli, as a janitor; Alberto Rizzo, as a timorous cabbie; Harcourt Williams, Tullio Carminati and Margaret Rawlings, as Miss Hepburn's official aides and an echelon of actual Rome correspondents, help give the proceedings authenticity and flavor. It is a short holiday in which they are involved but an entirely pleasureable one. Featured on the Music Hall stage are Anne Harvey, Patricia Rayney, George Sawtelle, Clifford Guest, The Rockettes and the Corps de Ballet.

No.2 Roman Holiday(罗马假日)1953 (罗马假日)


Cheerfully charming romantic comedy in which reporter Gregory Peck falls for a slumming princess, Audrey Hepburn. Bagged four Oscars, including one for Hepburn in her first major role The picture that effectively introduced the world to Audrey Hepburn, this is feelgood fare of the first order driven by good old-fashioned star power. Hepburn is the poised but pampered princess on holiday in Rome. Weary of her official duties, she bunks off and ends up in the arms of fast-talking newspaperman Joe Bradley (Peck). Hepburn's performance still looks brilliantly fresh and she gets surprising comic mileage out of her girlish innocent abroad act. As the affair gathers momentum, an initially prickly Peck puts professional considerations aside and allows himself to be won over by her relentlessly cute allure. Their romance is played out against the sights and sounds of a beautifully shot Rome, and in one of the many memorable moments the couple visit the Mouth of Truth, where an ad-libbing Peck pretends to have his hand bitten off. The focus rarely moves away from the stars, but Eddie Albert proves a great comic foil as a highly strung bohemian photographer. Nominated for 10 Oscars, not even a teary conclusion can lessen the appeal of this unfailingly lovely fairy tale.

Waterloo Bridge(魂断蓝桥)1940 (魂断蓝桥)
Let there be no doubt about it. Vivien Leigh is as fine an actress as we have on the screen today. Maybe even the finest, and that's a lot to say. Plenty of skeptics are still mumbling that her Scarlett O'Hara was a freak, that any one could have played it with such a wide-open field. We know all about them—and we know, too, about the unreconstructed dissidents. So this is an urgent hint that they hike themselves, one and all, right straight to the Capitol Theatre, where "Waterloo Bridge" opened yesterday, and see this remarkable Miss Leigh in her first picture since "Gone With the Wind." If they are not then convinced, we will cover ourself with a sack. Obviously, Metro has provided Miss Leigh with a story and role which permit her to range, to employ all the grace and mobility which are springed in her frail body and all the expressiveness of her vital face. It is one of those bitter-sweet stories, a poignantly romantic tale of a little ballet dancer who meets a young British army officer on Waterloo Bridge in London during the last World War, falls breathlessly in love with him (and he with her) in a whirlwind wartime courtship, has him torn away from her by the war and then, when she thinks he has been killed, is forced by destitution and despair into the oldest profession. What happens when he returns and finds her thus puts a climax on the story which fairness forbids us to reveal. True, this is not such a fiction as would qualify for a place among the great. It is an oddly isolated story of two people who rush eagerly into love against the barest background of a world at war and who are held apart mainly by the long arm of coincidence, not by any insuperable barriers. A connection is missed here, a misunderstanding occurs there—and the fate worse than death is the consequence. But Miss Leigh shapes the role of the girl with such superb comprehension, progresses from the innocent, fragile dancer to an empty, bedizened street-walker with such surety of characterization and creates a person of such appealing naturalness that the picture gains considerable substance as a result. Robert Taylor, too, turns in a surprisingly flexible and mature performance as the young officer, although his activity is mainly confined to being enthusiastic. Other good jobs are done by Virginia Field as a dancer friend, Lucile Watson as an aristocratic matron and C. Aubrey Smith as the inevitable British peer. Mervyn LeRoy has directed the picture with an emphasis on romantic close-ups, has given it ironic overtone through a tie-up at the beginning and end with the present day in England and has provided one superb sequence—a dance by the two lovers in a candlelit cabaret the night before his departure for the front—which will live in tender memory. In fact, all of "Waterloo Bridge" spans a dream-world of sentiment. At the Cinecitta


Once again the old conflict between the real and the foster mother for the love of a handsome and worthy son has been put on the screen so convincingly as to hold the interest of the audience to the foregone conclusion. Vittorio De Sica, one of Italy's best actors, never did a better job than he does in "Le Due Madri" ("The Two Mothers"), the Astra production directed by Amleto Palermi, now at the Cinecitta. As the young journeyman barber and amateur painter raised in a small village by a kindly peasant woman (Bella Starace Sainati) and finally discovered by his real mother (Lydia Johnson), a retired prima donna, Signor De Sica is practically perfect. So are the others in the cast. There is plenty of humor and a modicum of mental suffering in the picture, but it is disfigured by the gratuitous injection of a glorification of the Fascist invasion of Spain when an automobile accident or any other accident would have served just as well.

No.2 Waterloo Bridge(魂断蓝桥)1940 (魂断蓝桥)
Directed by Mervyn LeRoy, based on Robert Sherwood's play, with a screenplay by S.N. Behrman, Hans Rameau, and George Froeschel, this classic, tear-jerking wartime love story, starring Robert Taylor and Vivien Leigh (reportedly her favorite), was Oscar nominated for its B&W Cinematography and Original Musical Score. The second film version of Sherwood's play, after Waterloo Bridge (1931) with Mae Clarke and Kent Douglass. Leigh plays a melancholy dancer, Myra, who meets soldier Roy Cronin (Taylor) during an air raid in World War I London, just before he's to be shipped off to the front. Given a 48 hour leave, the carefree & romantic Roy, captivated by her beauty, sweeps Myra off her feet until she too (for the first time in her life?) is optimistic about their future. He receives permission from his uncle the Duke ( C. Aubrey Smith) to marry her. Unfortunately, per some red tape, they are unable to wed before Roy must leave for France. Myra attempts to return to the ballet, but her stern taskmaster (Maria Ouspenskaya) refuses to accept her back into the company, and fires fellow dancer Kitty (Virginia Field) for her outburst in support of her friend. Myra and Kitty take an apartment together where they struggle to make ends meet until Roy's mother, Lady Margaret (Lucile Watson), who had been working with the Red Cross, is able to come for a visit. Just before this meeting, however, Myra reads Roy's name on a casualty list in the newspaper. Stunned and in shock, Myra is unable to make a good impression on her would-be future mother-in-law (why wouldn't she share with her what she'd just read?!). After being consoled by the restaurant's hostess (Norma Varden, uncredited), Myra returns to Kitty who supports her financially during her depression by the only way a girl who can't find a job otherwise can. Soon, Myra comes out of her funk and realizes that Kitty has been selling herself to soldiers on leave. Naturally, she then joins this oldest profession hersel f. Tom Conway is the uncredited voice one hears as her first client. Later, as Myra is "greeting" the latest batch of soldiers arriving from the front at the train station, she sees Roy. Apparently, there was a reporting error made when he'd lost his dog tags. Ignorant of what's transpired in her life, Roy is thrilled to see Myra and figures they'll just pick up where they left off. Promising never to leave her again, Roy insists on taking Myra to their country estate, to more properly introduce her to his family and friends. Though Myra struggles with what to tell Roy of her recent past, she also sees an opportunity to finally "make it" and promises Kitty, before she leaves, to set her up well when she returns. Though things do not go smoothly initially at the Cronin estate for Myra; some of the local families had hoped Roy would marry one of their daughters and are not very accepting of the newcomer from outside their caste. However, with help from Lady Margaret, who'd given her another chance per Roy's obvious love for Myra (and vice versa) and the Duke, who insists on a showy dance with her, Myra is accepted. It is at this point that Myra's conscience gets the best of her and she comes clean to Lady Margaret, whom she asks never to tell Roy. Myra then departs early the next morning, leaving Roy clueless. *** SPOILERS *** Of course, Roy must find out what happened to the love of his life. He returns to London where he finds Kitty. Convinced of his love for Myra, Kitty reveals the truth of Myra's nightlife to Roy by taking him on a search for her through one seedy bar after another. Meanwhile, Myra is on Waterloo Bridge, where she's seen giving up; she walks rapidly past several troop trucks as they drive by before she


throws herself under the wheels of one of them. The film ends with (now) Colonel Roy, many years later at the beginning of World War II, fingering the good luck charm Myra had once given him.

Baby's Day Out(小鬼当街)1994 (小鬼当街)
Imagine that you're a villain in a John Hughes film. What do you do? A good bet might be to find someplace safe and secure to hide, especially if you catch sight of any kids under the age of twelve. Like someone unwilling to venture down an untrodden road, Hughes has yet again come back to the worn-out Home Alone concept, this time substituting a nine-month old toddler for wisecracking Macaulay Culkin. In this cased, however, the baby's smiles and chuckles are more endearing than Culkin's one-liners. There are three villains instead of two. And while their names aren't Larry, Curly, and Moe, the similarities are neither superficial nor incidental. These Three Stooges (played by Joe Mantegna, Joe Pantoliano, and Brian Haley) are out to make $5 million by kidnapping Baby Bink (Adam and Jacob Worton), the son of the ultra-rich, ultra-chic Benningtons (Lara Flynn Boyle and Matthew Glave). What they didn't count on was their own incompetence and, once the baby slips through their fingers, they're always a crawl behind him. For someone over the age of ten (or thereabouts), Baby's Day Out has enough slapstick to be amusing at least for a while. There isn't a scintilla of intellectual humor in the whole movie, and the repeated bashings and burnings received by the hapless villains get tiring after the first hour. There also seem to be an inordinate number of jokes dealing with the crushing, mutilation, or incineration of male reproductive organs. Young children will also laugh at this film, but there's a question about whether the content is suitable. With Home Alone, most of the damage done to the thugs was relatively minor, at least compared to what happens in Baby's Day Out. This time around, the cartoon mentality is taken to its Wiley Coyote absolute, with the Stooges constantly surviving crippling or should-be-fatal accidents. Somehow, it's more disturbing than funny when it happens to reel people, as opposed to animated creatures. Other than the slapstick, there's little to recommend this movie. A subplot involving how a status-obsessed mother comes to grips with her missing child is horribly misplaced, and these strains of melodrama are cloying. Whenever Lara Flynn Boyle appears on screen, it's the fervent wish of nearly every member of the audience that the movie turn its attention back to the baby. Like Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern before them, the trio in Baby's Day Out make amusingly inept crooks. Baby Bink is cute, but that's what little kids are supposed to be, and most of the impressive baby stunts result from ILM's work, not the incredible athletic ability of the Worton boys. Maybe the worst thing to happen to John Hughes was the success of Home Alone. Since then, with the exception of Only the Lonely (which was already in production by the time Kevin's family left without him), the filmmaker hasn't released a movie with even a spark of originality. Before Culkin, Hughes occasionally came up with something entertaining. Now, he has become redundant and tiresome. Doubtless, if Baby's Day Out makes money, there will be more of this fare to come. And, with the protagonists getting younger with each new picture, one wonders if the next release of this sort might end up being called Adventures in the Womb.

Captain Corelli's Mandolin(战地情人)2001 (战地情人)


If you've been longing to visit the Greek islands but haven't the time or money to make the journey, you could do worse than spend a couple of hours soaking up the scenery in ''Captain Corelli's Mandolin.'' Filmed largely on Cephalonia, the island that is the setting of Louis de Bernières's much-loved 1994 novel, ''Corelli's Mandolin'' (from which the film was adapted), the movie shimmers with a bluish-gold luminescence reflected from the turquoise waters of the Ionian Sea. This light lends the craggy landscape a hot coppery radiance that seems to emanate from inside the earth. Cinematographically (John Toll supervised), the movie is a glorious ode to the sun-baked island on which it was filmed. Although the drama that storms across this rugged paradise encompasses a war and a major earthquake, not to mention oodles of star-crossed love, little of it comes to life. Directed by John Madden (''Shakespeare in Love''), ''Captain Corelli's Mandolin'' wants to be a lofty, red-blooded wartime epic in the style of ''The English Patient,'' daubed with ''Zorba the Greek'' earth tones. But as the movie methodically plods forward on a screenplay (by Shawn Slovo) consisting entirely of clichés and watered-down exposition, it becomes sadly apparent that its only reliable asset is the gorgeous view.

Artificial Intelligence(人工智能)2001 (人工智能)
Expectations were high, perhaps unreasonably so, for A.I., the first - and only - movie to bear the monikers of cinematic heavyweights Stanley Kubrick and Steven Spielberg. Yet, while A.I. is consistently involving, and has moments of near-brilliance, it is far from a masterpiece. In fact, as the long-awaited "collaboration" of Kubrick and Spielberg, it ranks as something of a disappointment. Plus, the movie may end up falling short of the industry pundits' high box office predictions. A.I. should do sufficiently well to join the $100 million club, but it is unlikely to possess the clout necessary to outpace a certain rampaging animated ogre. By now, the story behind A.I. is well-known. Kubrick had been nursemaiding this project along for almost two decades, awaiting the time when technology could produce visual effects at the level demanded by his perfectionism. Over the years, he spoke in some detail with Spielberg about A.I., and, after his death, Spielberg decided to shepherd the project to completion. To that end, he attempted to wed his own style to Kubrick's. The late master's name appears in the opening credits (the movie is presented as "An Amblin/Stanley Kubrick Production"), and Kubrick's brother-in-law and long-time executive producer, Jan Harlan, is listed as one of two Executive Producers. I can't help but wonder if the inherent conflict in Kubrick and Spielberg's life views is the reason why A.I. seems so disjointed and uneven. Kubrick had a dim, cynical view of human nature. (What else could one say about the man behind A Clockwork Orange and Eyes Wide Shut?) Spielberg, on the other hand, is an optimist. A.I. shows both sides, and not always to good effect. It is at times life-affirming and positive; at others, cold and grim. The film's final half-hour is a curiosity, and not a successful one - a prolonged, needless epilogue which force-feeds us a catharsis that feels as false as it is extraneous to an otherwise fine story. There is no doubt that the concluding 30 minutes are all Spielberg; the outstanding question is where Kubrick's vision left off and Spielberg's began. A.I. is a science fiction re-interpretation of "Pinocchio" (a story the film frequently references) crossed with "Frankenstein". Events take place in a futuristic setting, where the rise of the oceans has swallowed up seaside cities like New York and Amsterdam, where New Jersey resembles an Amazon rain forest, and where the sin-and-sex center of the planet is a place called Rouge City, which resides across the Delaware from New Jersey (perhaps this is what becomes of Philadelphia). This future, as imagined by Spielberg and his set designers, is every bit as awe-inspiring as what Ridley Scott brought to the screen in Blade Runner and what Luc Besson crafted for The Fifth Element. Rouge City is stunning, and the waterlogged ruins of Manhattan are hauntingly beautiful. The story centers around David (Haley Joel Osment), a child substitute "mecha" who represents the first of his type - a synthetic who can actually love. In this case, the object of his incompletely-understood emotion is his "mother", Monica Swinton (Frances O'Connor). Monica's husband, Henry (Sam Robards), who brought David home as a pilot project from his workplace, Cybertronics of New Jersey, is more wary of the robot child. And, when one of David's actions endangers Monica and Henry's natural son, Martin (Jake Thomas), Monica is forced to take David into the woods and "lose" him. He is quickly found by a group of anti-robot fanatics, and, while being held captive by them, he befriends Gigolo Joe (Jude Law), who becomes an invaluable ally in his escape.


Like the real-life science surrounding the development of Artificial Intelligence, the movie is top-heavy with moral and ethical questions. What is life and where is the line that divides sentience from a programmed response? If a robot can genuinely love a person, what responsibility does that person bear in return? How can an immortal robot cope with outliving its organic creators? Writers from Mary Shelley to Isaac Asimov have been fascinated by these dilemmas. (The film Bicentennial Man, which explores similar terrain, is based on an Asimov-penned piece.) Perhaps Spielberg attempts too much with A.I. To some degree, by trying to tackle all of these issues, he fails to effectively present any of them. Plot threads are dropped at an alarming rate. A.I. is an ambitious film that, when it misses its mark, does so because it strives for so much. The script does not insult the audience's intelligence, and it gets us thinking about "big issues", such as love, life, god, and our place in the universe. It's unfortunate that as much thought didn't go into structuring the narrative as went into crafting the movie's thematic content. And those who have come to equate science fiction with action will be disappointed. A.I. is a drama with little in the way of adrenaline-boosting sequences. Spielberg has consciously slowed things down, relying on viewers' curiosity about the ideas and identification with the characters to keep them involved in the proceedings. The acting, as is usually the case with a Spielberg film, is top-notch. Osment, who is still best known for seeing dead people in The Sixth Sense, is compelling as the Pinocchio-like David. He imbues the robotic character with genuine humanity, but, by slightly exaggerating his mannerisms and some vocal inflections, constantly reminds us that David is not human. All of this is subtle; there are no herky-jerky movements and he does not speak in a monotone. Frances O'Connor (the Australian actress who starred in Mansfield Park) is credible as the conflicted Monica. And, in the part of Gigolo Joe, an android made to give women pleasure, Jude Law is spry and sprightly. The always-dour William Hurt plays David's creator (he also serves as the mouthpiece for much of the film's exposition - he gives several long, wordy speeches). There are also numerous vocal cameos, including the likes of Robin Williams and Ben Kingsley. So is A.I. a Kubrick movie or a Spielberg production? Since the film, which suffers from a case of split personality, can't seem to make up its mind, how are we supposed to? Perhaps the more relevant question is whether it's worth seeing. The answer is that, for all of its underdeveloped potential and truncated subplots, there's still enough of value in A.I. to make it a captivating experience.

Titanic(泰坦尼克号)1997 (泰坦尼克号)
Short of climbing aboard a time capsule and peeling back eight and one-half decades, James Cameron's magnificent Titanic is the closest any of us will get to walking the decks of the doomed ocean liner. Meticulous in detail, yet vast in scope and intent, Titanic is the kind of epic motion picture event that has become a rarity. You don't just watch Titanic, you experience it -- from the launch to the sinking, then on a journey two and one-half miles below the surface, into the cold, watery grave where Cameron has shot never-before seen documentary footage specifically for this movie. In each of his previous outings, Cameron has pushed the special effects envelope. In Aliens, he cloned H.R. Giger's creation dozens of times, fashioning an army of nightmarish monsters. In The Abyss, he took us deep under the sea to greet a band of benevolent space travelers. In T2, he introduced the morphing terminator (perfecting an effects process that was pioneered in The Abyss). And in True Lies, he used digital technology to choreograph an in-air battle. Now, in Titanic, Cameron's flawless re-creation of the legendary ship has blurred the line between reality and illusion to such a degree that we can't be sure what's real and what isn't. To make this movie, it's as if Cameron built an all-new Titanic, let it sail, then sunk it. Of course, special effects alone don't make for a successful film, and Titanic would have been nothing more than an expensive piece of eye candy without a gripping story featuring interesting characters. In his previous outings, Cameron has always placed people above the technological marvels that surround them. Unlike film makers such as Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin, Cameron has used visual effects to serve his plot, not the other way around. That hasn't changed with Titanic. The picture's spectacle is the ship's sinking, but its core is the affair between a pair of mismatched, star-crossed lovers. Titanic is a romance, an adventure, and a thriller all rolled into one. It contains moments of exuberance, humor, pathos, and tragedy. In their own way, the characters are all larger-than- life, but they're human


enough (with all of the attendant frailties) to capture our sympathy. Perhaps the most amazing thing about Titanic is that, even though Cameron carefully recreates the death of the ship in all of its terrible grandeur, the event never eclipses the protagonists. To the end, we never cease caring about Rose (Kate Winslet) and Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio). Titanic sank during the early morning hours of April 15, 1912 in the North Atlantic, killing 1500 of the 2200 on board. The movie does not begin in 1912, however -- instead, it opens in modern times, with a salvage expedition intent on recovering some of the ship's long-buried treasure. The expedition is led by Brock Lovett (Bill Paxton), a fortune hunter who is searching for the mythical "Heart of the Ocean", a majestic 56 karat diamond which reputedly went down with the ship. After seeing a TV report about the salvage mission, a 101-year old woman (Gloria Stuart) contacts Brock with information regarding the jewel. She identifies herself as Rose DeWitt Bukater, a survivor of the tragedy. Brock has her flown out to his ship. Once there, she tells him her version of the story of Titanic's ill-fated voyage. The bulk of the film -- well over 80% of its running time -- is spent in flashbacks. We pick up the story on the day that Titanic leaves Southampton, with jubilant crowds cheering as it glides away from land. On board are the movie's three main characters: Rose, a young American debutante trapped in a loveless engagement because her mother is facing financial ruin; Cal Hockley (Billy Zane), her rich-but-cold-hearted fiance? and Jack Dawson, a penniless artist who won his third-class ticket in a poker game. When Jack first sees Rose, it's from afar, but circumstances offer him the opportunity to become much closer to her. As the voyage continues, Jack and Rose grow more intimate, and she tries to summon up the courage to defy her mother (Frances Fisher) and break off her engagement. But, even with the aid of an outspoken rich women named Molly Brown (Kathy Bates), the barrier of class looms as a seemingly-insurmountable obstacle. Then, when circumstances in the Rose/Cal/Jack triangle are coming to a head, Titanic strikes an iceberg and the "unsinkable" ship (that term is a testament to man's hubris) begins to go down. By keeping the focus firmly on Rose and Jack, Cameron avoids one frequent failing of epic disaster movies: too many characters in too many stories. When a film tries to chronicle the lives and struggles of a dozen or more individuals, it reduces them all to cardboard cut-outs. In Titanic, Rose and Jack are at the fore from beginning to end, and the supporting characters are just that -- supporting. The two protagonists (as well as Cal) are accorded enough screen time for Cameron to develop multifaceted personalities. As important as the characters are, however, it's impossible to deny the power of the visual effects. Especially during the final hour, as Titanic undergoes its death throes, the film functions not only as a rousing adventure with harrowing escapes, but as a testimony to the power of computers to simulate reality in the modern motion picture. The scenes of Titanic going under are some of the most awe-inspiring in any recent film. This is the kind of movie that it's necessary to see more than once just to appreciate the level of detail. One of the most unique aspects of Titanic is its use of genuine documentary images to set the stage for the flashback story. Not satisfied with the reels of currently-existing footage of the sunken ship, Cameron took a crew to the site of the wreck to do his own filming. As a result, some of the underwater shots in the framing sequences are of the actual liner lying on the ocean floor. Their importance and impact should not be underestimated, since they further heighten the production's sense of verisimilitude. For the leading romantic roles of Jack and Rose, Cameron has chosen two of today's finest young actors. Leonardo DiCaprio (Romeo + Juliet), who has rarely done better work, has shed his cocky image. Instead, he's likable and energetic in this part -- two characteristics vital to establishing Jack as a hero. Meanwhile, Kate Winslet, whose impressive resume includes Sense and Sensibility, Hamlet, and Jude, dons a flawless American accent along with her 1912 garb, and essays an appealing, vulnerable Rose. Billy Zane comes across as the perfect villain -- callous, arrogant, yet displaying true affection for his prized fiancé ? The supporting cast, which includes Kathy Bates, Bill Paxton, Frances Fisher, Bernard Hill (as Titanic's captain), and David Warner (as Cal's no-nonsense manservant), is flawless. While Titanic is easily the most subdued and dramatic of Cameron's films, fans of more frantic pictures like Aliens and The Abyss will not be disappointed. Titanic has all of the thrills and intensity that movie-goers have come to expect from the director. A dazzling mix of style and substance, of the sublime and the spectacular, Titanic represents Cameron's most accomplished work to date. It's important not to let the running time hold you back -- these three-plus hour pass very quickly. Although this telling of the Titanic story is far from the first, it is the most memorable, and is deserving


of Oscar nominations not only in the technical categories, but in the more substantive ones of Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, and Best Actress.

No.2 Titanic(泰坦尼克号)1997 (泰坦尼克号)
Bloated spectacle movie from James Cameron in which the central romance between Leonardo DiCaprio's poor artist and Kate Winslet's society girl is overwhelmed by the monumental recreation of the historical disaster The Oscar giant-killer critics love to hate, probably because Titanic has the distinction of being one of the few Best Picture winners not to include any acting or screenplay awards among its tally. Many cite this as proof positive that modern blockbusters sacrifice everything in favour of computer-generated magic and, while the central romance isn't without its charm, it's still the weakest element of the film. Thus, first-class rich kid Rose DeWitt Bukaer (Winslet) and steerage urchin and struggling artist Jack Dawson (DiCaprio) fall helplessly in love, indulge in some back seat cherry popping and decide on the basis of their two-day relationship that they can't live without each other - until a big iceberg gets in the way of their new-found happiness. Cameron is no stranger to spectacle, and the amazing boat-sinking effects paper over the cracks in the story so well that even the most cynical viewer is drawn in. Verdict You don't like Winslet. You don't care about DiCaprio. You're grimly aware of every hyper-efficient emotional trigger and fast-forward through whole tranches of bad acting and writing, but in the end, Cameron's monumental epic still prises open the tear ducts.

Forrest Gump(阿甘正传 阿甘正传)1994 阿甘正传
Ever find the grind of life getting you down? Is the day-to-day struggle threatening to drag you under? If so, there is a movie out there that can replenish your energy and refresh your outlook. Passionate and magical, Forrest Gump is a tonic for the weary of spirit. For those who feel that being set adrift in a season of action movies is like wandering into a desert, the oasis lies ahead. Back when Tom Hanks' movie career was relatively new, the actor made a film called Big, which told the story of a young boy forced to grow up fast as a result of an ill-advised wish made at a carnival. In some ways, Forrest Gump represents a return to the themes of that earlier movie. In this case, the main character remains a child in heart and spirit, even as his body grows to maturity. Hanks is called upon yet again to play the innocent. Forrest Gump (Hanks), named after a civil war hero, grows up in Greenbow, Alabama, where his mother (Sally Field) runs a boarding house. Although Forrest is a little "slow" (his IQ is 75, 5 below the state's definition of "normal"), his mental impairment doesn't seem to bother him, his mother, or his best (and only) friend, Jenny Curran (played as an adult by Robin Wright). In fact, the naivete that comes through a limited understanding of the world around him gives Forrest a uniquely positive perspective of life. During the next thirty years, Forrest becomes a star football player, a war hero, a successful businessman, and something of a pop icon. Through it all, however, there is one defining element in his life: his love for Jenny. She is never far from his thoughts, no matter what he's doing or where he is. A trio of assets lift Forrest Gump above the average "life story" drama: its optimism, freshness, and emotional honesty. Though the movie does not seek to reduce every member of the audience to tears, it has moments whose power comes from their simplicity. Equally as important is laughter, and Forrest Gump has moments of humor strewn throughout. During the 60s and 70s, no topic more inflamed the turbulent national consciousness than that of Vietnam and those who were sent overseas to fight. Forrest, as might be expected, has a singular viewpoint on his time spent there: "We took long walks and were always looking for this guy named Charlie." In this observation can be found the essence of the title character's nature.


Through the miracle of visual effects, Forrest meets his fair share of famous people - George Wallace, Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon, and John Lennon. While mixing the real footage of these notables with new images featuring Hanks is not a seamless process, the result is nevertheless effective. Forrest Gump has several messages, some of which are less obvious than others. The most frequently recurring theme is an admonition not to give up on life. Why surrender when you don't know what lies ahead? By contrasting Forrest's life with the lives of those around him, and by showing how the passage of time brings solace to even the most embittered hearts, the movie underlines this point. Tom Hanks won last year's Academy Award for Philadelphia, but his performance here is more impressive. The Alabama accent may seem a little awkward at first, but it doesn't take long for the acting to dwarf the twang. Hanks has no difficulty creating a totally human character who is free of guile and deceit, and barely able to comprehend a concept like evil. Robin Wright gives the best performance of her career, surpassing what she accomplished in The Playboys. Looking and seeming like a younger Jessica Lange, she is believable as the object of Forrest's undying affection. The real scene-stealer, however, is Gary Sinise. A renowned director and theatrical actor, Sinise is probably best known to film-goers for his portrayal of George in 1992's Of Mice and Men (which he also directed). In this movie, his Lieutenant Dan Taylor is riveting. The passion and pain he brings to the middle portions of Forrest Gump hold together some of the film's weaker moments. The soundtrack boasts a wide variety of sounds of the era -- perhaps too wide a variety. Often, music can be useful in establishing a mood, but Forrest Gump rockets into the realm of overkill. There are sequences when the choice of song is inspired (the use of "Running on Empty" for Forrest's "long run" comes to mind), but the soundtrack could have used a little pruning. Ultimately, however, any gripes about Forrest Gump are minor. This is a marvelous motion picture -- a mint julep on a hot summer's afternoon.

No.2 Forrest Gump(阿甘正传 阿甘正传)1994 阿甘正传
Tom Hanks is the heroic dunce living through America's recent history in Robert Zemeckis' multi-Oscar winning comedy-drama. Top-notch performances and some impressive visual trickery contribute to one of the populist triumphs of the 90s Few mainstream movies of the 90s polarised opinion more effectively than this. Although a winner of six Oscars and nominated for half-a-dozen more, for many it's a schmaltzy tribute to a mythical American dream. For others it's a film dedicated to the triumph of innocence over cynicism. Whichever side you're on, there's no denying director Zemeckis' achievement, and it's a hard heart that resists the child-like charm of Tom Hanks' dopey hero. Growing up in 50s Alabama, Forrest overcomes an IQ of 75 to achieve success in a unlikely range of fields (Vietnam hero, sports celebrity, shrimp tycoon). Forrest's optimism and virtue stand in stark contrast to a nation torn apart by corruption and war. Cunningly doctored contemporary footage has him meeting Kennedy, Nixon and Lennon. The fate of his childhood sweetheart, Jenny (Wright), goes some way to illustrating the dark side of the 60s. Despite the simplicity of Forrest, the film is inventively structured and peppered with little ironies. Maintaining an expression of intense concentration, Hanks gives a performance that is among his best. Ignore the liberal hand-wringing and accusations of conservative moralising about this film. Rather this is an old fashioned fable in which good things sometimes happen to people if they're nice. And what's so objectionable about that? Verdict Unashamedly sentimental, this is a technically triumphant tear-jerker. Rarely off-screen Hanks puts in an expert performance and Zemeckis' canny direction means that even the more manipulative moments are not without their charm.

Journey to the Center of the Earth(地心游记)2008 (地心游记)


There is a part of me that will always have affection for a movie like "Journey to the Center of the Earth." It is a small part and steadily shrinking, but once I put on the 3-D glasses and settled in my seat, it started perking up. This is a fairly bad movie, and yet at the same time maybe about as good as it could be. There may not be an 8-year-old alive who would not love it. If I had seen it when I was 8, I would have remembered it with deep affection for all these years, until I saw it again and realized how little I really knew at that age. You are already familiar with the premise, that there is another land inside of our globe. You are familiar because the Jules Verne novel has inspired more than a dozen movies and countless TV productions, including a series, and has been ripped off by such as Edgar Rice Burroughs, who called it Pellucidar, and imagined that the Earth was hollow and there was another world on the inside surface. (You didn't ask, but yes, I own a copy of Tarzan at the Earth's Core with the original dust jacket.) In this version, Brendan Fraser stars as a geologist named Trevor, who defends the memory of his late brother, Max, who believed the center of the Earth could be reached through "volcanic tubes." Max disappeared on a mysterious expedition, which, if it involved volcanic tubes, should have been no surprise to him. Now Trevor has been asked to spend some time with his nephew, Max's son, who is named Sean (Josh Hutcherson). What with one thing and another, wouldn't you know they find themselves in Iceland, and peering down a volcanic tube. They are joined in this enterprise by Hannah (Anita Briem), who they find living in Max's former research headquarters near the volcano he was investigating. Now begins a series of adventures, in which the operative principle is: No matter how frequently or how far they fall, they will land without injury. They fall very frequently, and very far. The first drop lands them at the bottom of a deep cave, from which they cannot possibly climb, but they remain remarkably optimistic: "There must be a way out of here!" Sure enough, they find an abandoned mine shaft and climb aboard three cars of its miniature railway for a scene that will make you swear the filmmakers must have seen "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom." Just like in that movie, they hurtle down the tracks at breakneck speeds; they're in three cars, on three more or less parallel tracks, leading you to wonder why three parallel tracks were constructed at great expense and bother, but just when such questions are forming, they have to (1) leap a chasm, (2) jump from one car to another, and (3) crash. It's a funny thing about that little railway: After all these years, it still has lamps hanging over the rails, and the electricity is still on. The problem of lighting an unlit world is solved in the next cave they enter, which is inhabited by cute little birds that glow in the dark. One of them makes friends with Sean, and leads them on to the big attraction -- a world bounded by a great interior sea. This world must be a terrible place to inhabit; it has man-eating and man-strangling plants, its waters harbor giant-fanged fish and fearsome sea snakes that eat them, and on the further shore is a Tyrannosaurus rex. So do the characters despair? Would you despair, if you were trapped miles below the surface in a cave and being chased by its hungry inhabitants? Of course not. There isn't a moment in the movie when anyone seems frightened, not even during a fall straight down for thousands of feet, during which they link hands like sky-divers and carry on a conversation. Trevor gets the ball rolling: "We're still falling!" I mentioned 3-D glasses earlier in the review. Yes, the movie is available in 3-D in "selected theaters." Select those theaters to avoid. With a few exceptions (such as the authentic IMAX process), 3-D remains underwhelming to me -- a distraction, a disappointment and more often than not offering a dingy picture. I guess setting your story inside the Earth is one way to explain why it always seems to need more lighting. The movie is being shown in 2-D in most theaters, and that's how I wish I had seen it. Since there's that part of me with a certain weakness for movies like this, it's possible I would have liked it more. It would have looked brighter and clearer, and the photography wouldn't have been cluttered up with all the leaping and gnashing of teeth. Then I could have appreciated the work of the plucky actors, who do a lot of things right in this movie, of which the most heroic is keeping a straight face.

Resident Evil(生化危机)2002 (生化危机)
Mar 15, 2002 | If the appeal of playing video games is that you have some control over the outcome, then what's so exciting about seeing characters from those games left to their own deadly dull devices on a movie screen? "Resident Evil" doesn't even begin to answer that question. No one's asking for


well-developed characters or even a coherent story line (though neither would hurt). But the action sequences in "Resident Evil" are stagy and disconnected, and although there are a few cheesily awesome effects (an invisible laser that can silently and swiftly slice a body into neat diamond-shaped portions -- kewl!), most of the dangers the characters face feel redundant and well-catalogued. Look out -- here come a bunch of bloodthirsty zombies! Hey, watch out for those mutant Dobermans! Don't look now -- more zombies! And so forth. None of those zombies or bad-ass doggies would exist if it weren't for the mega-evil Umbrella Corporation, a bioengineering conglomerate that's been doing some very naughty experiments in its basement. When a vial of virus juice breaks and contaminates Umbrella's vast underground research facility (known as the Hive), the supercomputer that oversees it (known as the Red Queen) locks the place down and kills everyone inside. But all those people are not really dead. Viral contamination has turned them into a league of zombies with hollowed-out eyes, bits of their faces eaten off, and bad posture -- you can spot them slouching toward you a mile away. Alice (Milla Jovovich) and Rain (Michelle Rodriguez) lead a small crew of commandos deep into the Hive to disable the Red Queen and save the world from this treacherous virus. The first stretch of "Resident Evil" suggests that writer and director Paul W.S. Anderson ("Mortal Kombat") thinks that "suspense" means making people wait a long time for stuff to actually happen. Then when things finally do start happening, you wish they would stop. Alice, Rain and their team spend the whole movie rushing about the Hive, fending off those "Night of the Living Dead" ghoulies (who have the power to infect the living by inflicting the merest scratch) and a pathetic handful of other beasties (namely, the aforementioned Dobermans and an Alien-like slime thingy). Some loud, dull clanking industrial noises pop up on the soundtrack now and then, to cue us in to when we're supposed to get really excited. And there are a few moments designed to make us leap out of our seats (decapitation by elevator door, anyone?). Jovovich may not get to be much of an actress here, but with those merciless pale-blue eyes and that haughty feline smile, she at least has the right look to carry off cartoonish characters like Alice. She doesn't look half-bad here, strutting about in supple black motorcycle boots and a slinky red slip-dress with coordinating hot pants: In one sequence she strides across a long industrial corridor, swinging her long legs as if to mimic the pixillated jerkiness of a video game. But with the exception of crushing a zombie's skull between her mighty thighs, she doesn't get to do anything particularly interesting. Not that the other actors do either, with the solitary exception of Rodriguez, who is instantly recognizable by her trademark "check out the whites of my eyes" scowl. (Would it be possible for the Screen Actors Guild to start a special fund to buy her a new expression?) Characters you should have come to care about meet gruesome deaths, but you find yourself not giving a fig: Each time another character gets picked off, you're reminded that it's a good time to check your watch. Most of the time Anderson doesn't even bother to tell us where his characters are in the Hive or what they're doing. (Don't expect much help from the beeping computer-graphic maps that flash onto the screen now and then.) "Resident Evil" is mildly grisly, assaultively noisy and tremendously boring. It's action-packed in the most mindless and mechanical way. And you don't even get to push any buttons.

First Blood(第一滴血)1982 (第一滴血)
First Blood arrived in theaters in October 1982, some seven and one-half years after the end of the Vietnam War. Veterans' rights were still a significant issue, although their prominence was waning. With its message about how returning soldiers had been marginalized by a divided country in desperate need of healing, First Blood sought to bring more to the table than the story of an unhinged survivalist lashing out at a bunch of close-minded bigots. Based on David Morrell's novel, the screenplay by Michael Kozoll, William Sackheim, and Stallone sought to mix politics with action. As established by the movie, Rambo wasn't merely the target of a group of small-minded local law enforcement officials, but the pawn of a system that created him then set him adrift and, in a larger sense, of a society that had no use for him beyond the soulless business of warfare. In First Blood, Rambo is a victim. In the three sequels, he is "redeemed" and transformed into a hero. First Blood has a moral compass; the subsequent entries in the series do not.


Ghost Rider(恶灵骑士)2007 (恶灵骑士)
Is the world ready for a flaming Nicolas Cage? After a long string of financial flops, this idiosyncratic actor is placing his faith in a comic-book character with a combustible body and an addiction to jelly beans. In ''Ghost Rider'' Mr. Cage is Johnny Blaze, a daredevil biker who once made a deal with Mephistopheles (an orange-eyed Peter Fonda) and is now required to hunt down wayward demons while shooting flames from every pore. No wonder he listens to the Carpenters. But Johnny's emasculating musical tastes are not the only problem with ''Ghost Rider,'' a movie that betrays the promise of its first 30 minutes -- when Johnny is played by the charming young actor Matt Long -- with an increasingly witless script and a star who simply allows the movie to unfold around him. This dissociation leaves the supporting cast to its own devices, with no one suffering more than the appealing Eva Mendes as Johnny's true love, Roxanne. If Ms. Mendes ever finds a director willing to allow her to perform with her shirts fully buttoned, there will be no stopping her. With its sequel-ready resolution, ''Ghost Rider'' embodies franchise hopes that may be dashed by a central character who's more funny than frightening. As for Mr. Cage, the only thing he should be firing is his manager.

The Shawshank Redemption(肖申克的救赎)1994 (肖申克的救赎)
Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman star in Frank Darabont's memorably moving prison-set fable, adapted from a short story by Stephen King. Robbins' young banker is accused of a double-murder but refuses to let his spirit be broken Mugged at the 1995 Oscars by Forrest Gump, this enduringly powerful prison drama promotes the unquenchable human spirit with an intelligence that the gooey Gump readily sacrificed. Despite the film's modest performance at the box office on its first release, Frank Darabont made a major splash with his assured directorial debut. Adapted by the director himself from a Stephen King short story - one that appeared in the same 'Different Seasons' collection that spawned the films Stand By Me and Apt Pupil - the plot has Tim Robbins as Andy Dufresne, a man arriving in prison in 1946 on a double life sentence for the murder of his wife and her lover. Andy is an apparently decent man with a preternaturally calm disposition, who is quietly insistent about his own innocence. He befriends Red (Freeman), a veteran of the penal system, and their growing friendship over 20 years forms the backbone of the film - and provides a narrative pay-off as satisfying as it is heart-warming. Using a voiceover narration, much of which is taken verbatim from King's story, the film's great triumph is its sincerity, and even those moments that might have felt mawkish - the suicide of the old lag, for example, who fails to adjust to life on the outside - achieve the dignity of genuine tragedy. At nearly two and a half hours in length, it's a film with plenty of time on its hands yet, thanks to engagingly warm performances by Robbins and Freeman, it very rarely drags. Robbins in particular locates a deep-seated humanity in his enigmatic banker (who unexpectedly benefits from his accounting skills), while the issues that Darabont is concerned with - faith, friendship, patience and hope - are woven seamlessly into the fabric of the story. he director returned to Stephen King for his belated follow-up, The Green Mile, which failed to live up to the promise of his debut, replacing its warmth and subtlety with sheer bulk. Here though Darabont achieves that rarest of goals and creates a film that not only stands up to repeated viewings but which, for its legion of dedicated fans, approaches the power and significance of on-screen therapy. Verdict Powerful, poignant, thought-provoking and finally irresistibly uplifting. Thanks to quietly dignified performances and Darabont's own inventive direction, The Shawshank Redemption remains a first class example of how to approach potentially weighty issues with conviction, style, lightness and wit.


No.2 The Shawshank Redemption(肖申克的救赎)1994 (肖申克的救赎)
"The Shawshank Redemption" is a movie about time, patience and loyalty -- not sexy qualities, perhaps, but they grow on you during the subterranean progress of this story, which is about how two men serving life sentences in prison become friends and find a way to fight off despair. The story is narrated by "Red" Redding (Morgan Freeman), who has been inside the walls of Shawshank Prison for a very long time and is its leading entrepreneur. He can get you whatever you need: cigarettes, candy, even a little rock pick like an amateur geologist might use. One day he and his fellow inmates watch the latest busload of prisoners unload, and they make bets on who will cry during their first night in prison, and who will not. Red bets on a tall, lanky guy named Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins), who looks like a babe in the woods. But Andy does not cry, and Red loses the cigarettes he wagered. Andy turns out to be a surprise to everyone in Shawshank, because within him is such a powerful reservoir of determination and strength that nothing seems to break him. Andy was a banker on the outside, and he's in for murder. He's apparently innocent, and there are all sorts of details involving his case, but after a while they take on a kind of unreality; all that counts inside prison is its own society -- who is strong, who is not -- and the measured passage of time. Red is also a lifer. From time to time, measuring the decades, he goes up in front of the parole board, and they measure the length of his term (20 years, 30 years) and ask him if he thinks he has been rehabilitated. Oh, most surely, yes, he replies; but the fire goes out of his assurances as the years march past, and there is the sense that he has been institutionalized -- that, like another old lifer who kills himself after being paroled, he can no longer really envision life on the outside. Red's narration of the story allows him to speak for all of the prisoners, who sense a fortitude and integrity in Andy that survives the years. Andy will not kiss butt. He will not back down. But he is not violent, just formidably sure of himself. For the warden (Bob Gunton), he is both a challenge and a resource; Andy knows all about bookkeeping and tax preparation, and before long he's been moved out of his prison job in the library and assigned to the warden's office, where he sits behind an adding machine and keeps tabs on the warden's ill-gotten gains. His fame spreads, and eventually he's doing the taxes and pension plans for most of the officials of the local prison system. There are key moments in the film, as when Andy uses his clout to get some cold beers for his friends who are working on a roofing job. Or when he befriends the old prison librarian (James Whitmore). Or when he oversteps his boundaries and is thrown into solitary confinement. What quietly amazes everyone in the prison -- and us, too -- is the way he accepts the good and the bad as all part of some larger pattern than only he can fully see. The partnership between the characters played by Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman is crucial to the way the story unfolds. This is not a "prison drama" in any conventional sense of the word. It is not about violence, riots or melodrama. The word "redemption" is in the title for a reason. The movie is based on a story, Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption, by Stephen King, which is quite unlike most of King's work. The horror here is not of the supernatural kind, but of the sort that flows from the realization than 10, 20, 30 years of a man's life have unreeled in the same unchanging daily prison routine. The director, Frank Darabont, paints the prison in drab grays and shadows, so that when key events do occur, they seem to have a life of their own. Andy, as played by Robbins, keeps his thoughts to himself. Red, as Freeman plays him, is therefore a crucial element in the story: His close observation of this man, down through the years, provides the way we monitor changes and track the measure of his influence on those around him. And all the time there is something else happening, hidden and secret, which is revealed only at the end. "The Shawshank Redemption" is not a depressing story, although I may have made it sound that way. There is a lot of life and humor in it, and warmth in the friendship that builds up between Andy and Red. There is even excitement and suspense, although not when we expect it. But mostly the film is an allegory about holding onto a sense of personal worth, despite everything. If the film is perhaps a little slow in its middle passages, maybe that is part of the idea, too, to give us a sense of the leaden passage of time, before the glory of the final redemption.

Gladiator(角斗士)2000 (角斗士)


Ridley Scott revives the Roman epic with computer generated imagery and a mighty performance from Russell Crowe. Not to mention the last stand of the late Oliver Reed Hulking great buildings, hulking men, hulking utterances are the blocks that Ridley Scott's film is constructed from. But at the heart of Gladiator's epic recreation of the ancient Roman world sits an effectively simple tale of loyalty and love. Maximus (Crowe) is a respected warrior, a general loyal to the visionary emperor Marcus Aurelius (Harris). However, when Marcus Aurelius dies, Maximus is double-crossed by the dangerous, nay deranged, new emperor Commodus (Phoenix). All Maximus wants is to avenge his family. After being sold to gladiator trainer Proximo (Reed, serving up his final role with brute nobility), the experienced soldier fights his way up the gladiatorial league charts until he's the darling of the Colosseum. The David Beckham of bloodshed. Soon he gets a chance to face the father-murdering, sister-loving cause of his woes - Commodus. Ridley Scott's best film since Blade Runner, Gladiator magnificently revives a genre that seemed to have expired with Cleopatra in the mid-1960s. Although it's essentially cobbled together from 19th century neoclassical paintings, Spartacus and The Fall Of The Roman Empire, Gladiator is given added oomph with judiciously-applied CGI, a solid script from David Franzoni (Amistad), John Logan (The Aviator) and William Nicholson (Shadowlands). Plus, in Maximus, Russell Crowe found his best role. The supporting cast is impressive too. Verdict Meaty and satisfying, Gladiator is a modern classic and worthy of its awards.

Schindler's List( 辛德勒名单 ) 1993 ( 辛德勒名单)
Schindler's list, director in structural characters of the jews, schindler's main body, the same has said, if chien is a Jew, or is such a common Germanic nationality people, so that even the great redemption, but can not improve a class. This task is set to schindler's background, a nation, and the rich high social status, as is known to all, when imperial German jewish is to hold the concept "discriminatory attitude, whether in adults or children has entrenched. While such a role, as design Germanic festival of society, the jews to the businessman, as the great redemption and rise again a class. This design is the director of the movie play for greater influence significance is more outstanding, is also the good rendering. This is a very accurate can show the director of social background, he is very important. Entrenched ideas, must be the discrimination distorted manufacturing opinion to instill, children are a white paper, most people will attend the political empire. The true facts, and upper staff know only by the imperial German is for the public trust, the top spread, people subconsciously generated for jewish discrimination gradually. When the adults produce thoughts, nature would transmit to the children, and the children's mind is not mature, to identify the ability is bad, very easily subconsciously produced this thought. This is the opinion of distortion of cadres, also as transmission in domestic propaganda fascist Japan, make public basic support of so-called "jihad" foreign expansion of war. The spread of the distortion of public opinion is terrible, it can completely eroded people thought that people cannot distinguish the spread of this opinion on the nose. As the nation's film sino-japanese children in the snow, take dirty stones to throw the jews, and forced out chanting go, jewish guy. If no such opinion, children's ideology of ethnic differences have no the rivalry between the two. The thought of the culprit is the person that distorted opinion. The film redeemed reflected in his salvation in the rescue and rescue, no obvious, but he saved but is outstanding. In fact he saved is the important link of the rescue. After the war, many defeated fascism is to be handed over by the military courts as ever, schindler sanctions in close cooperation with the Nazi guard, who will save face sanctions, but here, saved the reflect the signature is saved schindler. Do one thing at a time, start may damage, and then some of his own interest income is probably not think of themselves, save others, the condition is saved himself. Absolutely everyone is mutual, nationality and race, this save in his salvation is appeared after.


In total can stimulate the slaughter of the weak, and not redeem the jews of sympathy, but the first chance to have compassion will try to salvation. When the rulers of the people, when the slaughter unilaterally people without any resistance, is strong and the weak, belong to the rivalry between the poles. In this not unfair, often can cause to the weak against outsiders produce sympathy. In such a sympathy, will be in the circumstance of thinking of redemption. Premise is that people need to have compassion. It is to cast, and slaughter victims. The killing has been endless slaughter blind, can no longer produce compassion, rooted in the thought that they have told the subconscious life as if the victim CaoGai generally. This is a period of history, can not have similar things, will power by outsiders to redeem the impotent victims. So the jews and not accidental redemption. If a race, they face annihilation, only will capitulate blindly, not resist, waiting for their only will be destroyed. In the subconsciousness, some people have their resistance is meaningless. Because of the suffering will not stop killing, and not against the opposite effect. Always thought that the massacre is weak. In the film the jews in a narrow quarantined for the local area, they are satisfied, because no party guard, but they really dead. Very accord with the age of the jews were slaughtered. Precisely because the psychological lost souls. At the situation, without a fight against the only accept death, waiting in line, under the strong spirit, not in themselves by destroying the spirit form self-rescue consciousness, merely a mare merecfil to slaughter, with such a thought, is ultimately not perish from the reality.

No.2 Schindler's List( 辛德勒名单 ) 1993 ( 辛德勒名单)
The best Holocaust movie ever made is Life is Beautiful. However, since Life is Beautiful came out in 1997, there has to have been another film that held the title before Benigni's comic masterpiece came along and snatched it away. That film is Schindler's List. Schindler's List is the true story of Oscar Schindler, a Nazi party member, a war profiteer, and a man responsible for saving the lives of over 2000 Jews in the Holocaust. As would be expected from the majority of Holocaust movies, Schindler's List is a film that you cannot say you love without feeling like a total schmuck (or, practicing my Yiddish again, being very Vashnuked). However Schindler's List is what you would call an endearing film. Schindler's List utilizes a stark score by John Williams and a black & white photography by Janusz Kaminski in order to provide the full effect of the Holocaust: utter depression and hopelessness. The film is about as depressing to watch as Leaving Las Vegas. However, despite the desire to use a Smith & Wesson on yourself while watching this movie, the film manages to compel your interest. Zaillian's script is right on target: pulling us in at the beginning with the story of Oscar's brilliant (although narcissistic) formation of a business out of nothing. The business exploits the Jew so much that you begin to wonder if you are watching the wrong movie. However, after Schindler witnesses the liquidation of the Warsaw Ghetto (still the most touching bunch of celluloid I have ever watched), he begins to work subversively against the Germans and for the Jews. The one thing that weakens the film is the presence of humor. If a movie is going for the absolute drab, as Schindler's List did, it would be a good idea to not try to lighten a moment by adding in a joke that you would find in a second-rate comedy. Humor has never been Zaillian's strongpoint, and he shouldn't have tried to start. Regardless, Schindler's List is still the best movie that Spielberg ever made, and the second-best film about the Holocaust. Schindler's List is a true dramatic classic, capable of making anyone cry.

Seven(七宗罪 七宗罪)1995 七宗罪
David Fincher's classic tale of inventive serial killing and urban degredation, with Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman on excellent form Who'd have thought? An absurd-sounding tale of a serial killer basing his crimes around the seven deadly sins, directed by the man behind the mess that was Alien3, turning out to be one of the most chilling and original thrillers of the 1990s.


From the outset, through the film's brilliantly designed deliberate under-lighting - we see very little blood and guts - and muffled sound, the audience is encouraged to lean towards the screen, immerse itself in the film's unbearably grim world. Pitt is in career-making form as Mills, a simple cop moving with his sweet young wife (Paltrow) to a grim, anonymous city, determined to make a difference, to do some good. He is assigned to track down a vengeful killer, and works alongside Somerset (Freeman), a jaded, wise policeman on the verge of retirement. The two are that modern movie cliché - the mismatched pair thrown together by circumstance, who gradually learn mutual respect. But Fincher and Walker take these hackneyed ingredients, play with them in the context of a brilliantly cohesive plot, and present something consistently fresh - the police finding themselves with too much evidence, the premature unmasking of the killer - and very, very dark.

Wuthering Heights(呼啸山庄)1970 (呼啸山庄)
Laurence Olivier and Merle Oberon take on the roles of Emily Bronte's star-crossed lovers in this 1930s adaptation of the classic novel Samuel Goldwyn said that this was his favourite of all the films he produced. It received no fewer than eight Oscar nominations back in the days when that really meant something and critics have often said that it's the greatest romantic film ever made. Unfortunately, for modern audiences at least, it doesn't live up to these grand expectations. The "vagabond gypsy boy" Heathcliff (played as a child by Rex Downing) arrives at Wuthering Heights and is taken in by the kind owner, Earnshaw (Kellaway). Heathcliff and the young Cathy Earnshaw (Sarah Wooton as the child) quickly become inseparable, though Heathcliff is loathed by the brattish Hindley (Scott) who spends most of his time horse-whipping him and throwing fake looking stones at his head. This is the weakest section of the film - the children slip in and out of American accents and Yorkshire burrs, the whiney, highly strung score is intrusive and the composition of the scenes is clumsy right down to the lighting (candles give off impossible light, shadows fall in the wrong direction). Fans of the book may have trouble accepting the camp, hammy Olivier as the dark and brooding Heathcliff and his performance lacks the power and bleakness necessary for a man consistently likened to "the devil himself". Furthermore, the landscape doesn't really look like Yorkshire and the screenplay is at first clunky and crude. Ben Hecht's and Charles MacArthur's episodic narrative jumps through the years at an alarming rate with clumsy interjections from a storytelling servant Ellen Dean (Robson) to keep slower audience members - and her entirely superfluous interlocutor Mr Lockwood (Mander) -abreast of what's going on. Fortunately matters improve as time moves on and the action intensifies. Heathcliff disappears and Cathy (now played by Merle Oberon) breaks both their hearts by marrying the moneyed Edgar Linton (David Niven). There are some genuinely intense scenes and Oberon is consistently impressive as the wild yet vulnerable Cathy, while Olivier musters some tenderness for the tragic and impressive final scenes. Verdict A torrid half an hour of passion at the end of this picture doesn't quite make up for the hour of drudgery that goes before it. And Laurence Oiivier's Heathcliff is nothing like as impressive as Timothy Dalton's from 1971.

A Beautiful Mind(美丽心灵)2001 (美丽心灵)


Earnest thriller-cum-weepie starring Russell Crowe as a maths genius whose life is wracked by schizophrenia. Stamped all over with 'Hollywood prestige project' and showered with awards Russell Crowe gets the chance to act his heart out in Ron Howard's A Beautiful Mind. Not only does he portray a maths genius (based on real life Nobel Prize-winner John Forbes Nash Jr), he portrays a maths genius crippled by schizophrenia. And he ages 47 years! He turns in a chunky, twitchy performance which, though not on a par with his more subtle turn in The Insider, is admirable. He is complemented by a less flashy, underwritten turn from Jennifer Connelly. Princeton, 1947. Awkward but arrogant John Nash arrives on a maths scholarship, determined to come up with an original idea. Not bothering with classes, he obsessively writes theorem (plotting the movements of pigeons, for example). His only friend is raffish roommate Charles (Bettany), a rich source of wisecracks - "Officer, I saw the driver who hit me - his name was Johnny Walker" - and moral support. Eventually Nash comes up with a revolutionary paper that wins him a position at MIT. It's here that his eccentricities give way to madness. Although he marries beautiful student Alicia (Connelly), the top-secret code-breaking work he is apparently doing for the government - represented by Ed Harris' mysterious agent - pushes him to breaking point. Full-blown paranoid schizophrenia erupts and Nash is hospitalised, his reality a mess of mania and imagination. Three decades of struggle ensue. Although the film leaves out the seedier elements of the real Nash's life (divorce, cottaging), it fashions a loose biopic that is by turns funny, exciting, sad and downright corny. The script, by Akiva Goldsman, (who also wrote the inexcusable Batman & Robin), is riddled with pithy, but occasionally clichéd, utterances that capture these shifting tones: there's Nash's description of himself: "I'm quite well balanced - I have a chip on both shoulders" - or the description his doctor, Rosen (Plummer), later uses to describes his disease to his wife: "The nightmare of schizophrenia is not knowing what's true." Although it dallies with Cold War thriller elements, A Beautiful Mind is ultimately a formulaic tale of human perseverance, and merits comparisons with other, similar award-showered tales: notably Shine. As such, it's an above-average weepie, a Hollywood prestige film that pre-packages the sufferings of one highly intelligent man and the woman who loves him to manipulate the emotions. Although the film itself is not as smart as it imagines itself to be, it's certainly artful, with fine camera work by Roger Deakins (who shot the Coens' stylish The Man Who Wasn't There), and solid, thanks to Howard's even-tempered direction. Verdict A typical Oscars movie. Solid, middle-brow and worthy.

Modern Times(摩登时代)1936 (摩登时代)
Charlie Chaplin rages against the machines in an anti-capitalist comedy featuring the Little Tramp alongside his real-life lover and soon-to-be wife, Paulette Goddard Chaplin was in the midst of his anti-sound protest (during which he made silent films while other studios churned out talkies) when he made Modern Times - his most explicit statement against technological advancement and capitalism. It is, in fact, a quasi-sound film, but with all voices emanating from various machines instead of the actors, except for one moment when the Tramp sings a gibberish song. That the machines can talk, yet the people don't, is all part of their dehumanising effect - early on, the Tramp works flat-out on a production line and when he can't keep up, he's sucked into the machine. His repetitive movements also give him a nervous twitch, even when he's not working, turning his body into an automaton that's out of his control. His only release is a nervous breakdown, during which he wreaks havoc in the factory, finally gaining control over the machines but ending up in jail. Modern Times was made in 1936, during the Great Depression, when industrialisation brought the threat of unemployment and poverty to the masses. The film starts out with a cynical pair of shots comparing sheep spilling out of their pen to jostling city workers, but while it portrays the detrimental effects of technology, it ultimately celebrates a triumph of the human spirit. The Tramp finds a kindred spirit in the form of 'the gamin' (Goddard) and together they try to fit in, taking jobs and living in a deteriorating shack. But with the authorities watching over them, it proves difficult even when they've found perfect


jobs as entertainers. The couple just aren't cut out for the rat race. In one early scene, the Tramp feeds some burglars in a department store he's supposed to be guarding because they're hungry people, just like he is. In the same way that Chaplin bypassed sound films by simply ignoring them, so the Tramp and the gamin avoid technology, conquering the industrial revolution by refusing to be part of it. They are "the only two live spirits in a world of automatons". Verdict Sometimes sentimental yet highly comical, Chaplin's anti-industrialisation statement is wholly idealistic but its topical reflection on industrial paranoia still resonates today. Regarded as one of Chaplin's finest films.

Ghost(人鬼情未了)1990 (人鬼情未了)
Heaven can wait for Patrick Swayze in this supernatural love story starring Demi Moore and Whoopi Goldberg An unlikely, though ultimately impressive, attempt to make a supernatural romantic drama in the vein of 1947's The Ghost And Mrs. Muir, Ghost is a genre-bending blockbuster that turns mawkish sentiment into real emotional involvement through the skilled direction of Jerry Zucker, a filmmaker better known for Airplane! and The Naked Gun series. Swayze plays Sam Wheat, a merchant banker who's murdered in a street robbery and Moore is Molly Jensen, his grieving widow, left alone with her memories of their pottery table romps to the tune of 'Unchained Melody'. Yet there's a twist: Sam may be dead, but he's stayed on earth as a spirit in order to spend a few more moments with his beloved. Throw in a conspiracy plot, plenty of ectoplasmic special effects and an over-the-top Whoopi Goldberg and the result is a crowd-pleasing supernatural romance guaranteed to keep the interest of even the most blithe spirit. Admittedly, Swayze and Moore's performances are far too wet to actually be considered anything more than barely competent (good looks were obviously more important than talent in casting the lead couple), but with a script and supporting cast this good, it doesn't really matter. High points include Swayze's subway train lesson in manifesting himself in the real world, the scene in which the film's villains are dragged down to hell and every moment of Goldberg's amateur psychic shtick. Verdict A perfect balance of laughs and tears, a sparklingly funny script and a clever fantasy about ghostly goings on make this a superior blockbuster romance.

The Godfather(教父)1972 (教父)
The son of a powerful Mafia Don struggles to escape his family's criminal legacy and become a legitimate businessman in this first part of the classic saga directed by Francis Ford Coppola. Stars Al Pacino, Marlon Brando, James Caan and Robert Duvall It's difficult to say anything about The Godfather that hasn't been said already, but know this: in an age when even mediocre films have the opportunity to win Best Picture Oscars (and, yes, we're talking about Crash here), this a film that is genuinely deserving of its revered status as a cinematic masterpiece. Released in 1972 in what's considered to be a golden era for film, The Godfather had somewhat humble beginnings. Based on the Mario Puzo novel, the film was initially rejected by a number of directors before being handed to Francis Ford Coppola when he was still a 31-year-old Hollywood up-and-comer. It's to Coppola's credit that, despite fights with Paramount and the constant threat of being fired, he managed to craft a critically and commercially lauded film that set a new benchmark for Hollywood epics. As with any film of its stature, The Godfather has embedded itself so deeply into popular culture that you can feel you've viewed the film several times without ever having watched a single frame. The


horse's head in the bed; Brando's distinctive mumbling; the evocative theme music; classic quotes such as "I'm gonna make him an offer he can't refuse" - it's all here. The Godfather is much more than fodder for bad parodies, though. It is testament to this engaging and intricate film's quality that the three hour running time is a blessing rather than a curse. The detailed plot revolves around the Corleone family, Italian immigrants that have been guided to Mafia supremacy through the questionable "business" dealings of family head Don Vito Corleone (Brando in an Oscar winning role). A fresh-faced Al Pacino undertakes his first big starring role as Michael Corleone, son of Vito and recent returnee from the battlefields of WWII. What distances Michael from his family, however, is a desire to go legit - a wish supported by the Don who has dreams of Michael becoming a Senator. As is the case when your lifestyle mainly revolves around blackmail, robbery and murder, things soon go awry: Vito's reign is challenged by other Mafia families intent on getting a slice of the ever-growing drug trade. Don Vito's refusal to deal in narcotics leads to a lengthy feud that has irreversible repercussions for the entire Corleone clan - particularly the increasingly ruthless Michael. Featuring note-perfect performances from everyone involved, a brilliantly written Oscar-winning script from Coppola and Puzo and deft direction, The Godfather satisfies film lovers on any number of levels and will have them salivating in anticipation of the equally brilliant (and, for many, superior) Part II of the trilogy. Verdict A multi-generational epic that never leaves the audience less than enthralled, this is the godfather of all gangster films.

The Bridges of Madison County(廊桥遗梦)1995 (廊桥遗梦)
A housewife and a freelance photographer embark on the relationship of a lifetime. Romantic drama starring Meryl Streep and director-producer-composer Clint Eastwood The Bridges Of Madison County ought to be one of those romantic dramas that comes with a health warning on account of its high sugar content. That this adaptation of Robert James Waller's unspeakably bad bestseller is more than halfway watchable has everything to do with Clint Eastwood. An unlikely choice as director and producer, it's thanks to Eastwood's relatively thin sentimental streak that the film doesn't fall headlong into a lagoon of schmaltz. Of course, the subject matter dictates that Madison County has its mushy moments, but weigh the finished film against what might have happened had first-choice director Steven Spielberg signed on and you'll see that we have a lot to thank Eastwood for. Clint is Robert Kincaid, the freelance photographer who's come to remote Madison County to snap the region's roofed bridges for 'National Geographic'. On the way to his assignment he bumps into Francesca (Streep), an Italian-American mother of two with whom he immediately strikes up a friendship. Then, as Francesca's grown-up children discover as they pour over their late mother's diaries, the unlikely pair embark on a short affair that will colour the rest of their lives. The sort of story Mills & Boon might have scotched for being too sappy, it's only great professionalism that keeps Madison County afloat. The contemporary scenes in which adult offspring Annie Corley and Victor Slezak argue about their mother's infidelity are a particular delight, at their best recalling the short stories of Raymond Carver. As for Eastwood and Streep, it's refreshing to see two late-in-life lovers who aren't desperate to disguise their age. That said, Eastwood's lack of eroticism and Streep's self-conscious performance make their's a peculiarly passionless romance. Still, compare their coupling to the fraught relationships of most romantic dramas and their measured maturity is something of a saving grace. So too is the producer-director's muted score, the subtlety of which many a more experienced composer would do well to consider. Verdict Okay for what it is, and far better than it could - and perhaps should - have been.

The Legend of 1900(海上钢琴师)1998 (海上钢琴师)


Tim Roth stars in the first English language film by Cinema Paradiso director Giuseppe Tornatore. A fantastical, historical fable about a gifted pianist born and raised on a cruise ship Though Italian director Giuseppe Tornatore's Oscar-winning Cinema Paradiso was one of the surprise hits of the 80s, subsequently his profile has been low. Perhaps in an effort to rectify this, here he presents his first English language film, a lavish and unashamedly sentimental fable based on a monologue by Italian writer Alessandro Baricco. Given a ruthless studio edit before its release, more than once it threatens to drift off into whimsy, but remains on course, thanks to the firm presence of Tim Roth in the title role. Told in flashback, it's the story of Danny Boodmann TD Lemon 1900 (Roth), so-named because he was found as an infant in 1900, lodged in a crate of lemons aboard a luxury cruise liner. Growing up at sea, it swiftly becomes apparent that 1900 is a gifted - possibly even genius - pianist. His legend spreads and jazz giant Jelly Roll Morton (Williams) even comes aboard to hear him play. Years later and narrator/former band member Max Tooney (Vince) is pawning the trumpet he blew alongside 1900 when he hears the ship is to be sunk. Could it be that 1900 is still somewhere on board, mooning over a mysterious beauty known only as 'The Girl' (Thierry) while working up a lonely rag? To an extent it's a film uncertain about its own destination and some wobbly dialogue means 1900 himself remains a bit of an enigma. En route, however, are some great set-pieces such as 1900's knuckle-busting keyboard duel with Morton and his ride round the room on top of a piano. Ennio Morricone's score ensures the music is at least as important as the sumptuous visuals, and is supplemented by some great jazz piano numbers by Scott Joplin and (the real) Jelly Roll Morton. Verdict By turns compelling, confounding, and occasionally just downright odd, Tornatore's ocean-going epic contains much to admire. True, there are moments when it threatens to sink beneath a tide of sentiment, but an understated performance by Tim Roth and the music which forms the film's heart make this an unusual but worthwhile venture.

The Sound of Music(音乐之声 音乐之声)1965 音乐之声
How do you solve a problem like the Nazis? By becoming the von Trapp Family Singers and hoodwinking the SS with your floral costume and patriotic songs, of course However much it may be ridiculed - its status as a Christmas TV film is legendary - there's no denying that this is one of the best screen musicals ever made. As Maria, the lapsed nun who becomes governess to the von Trapp brood and weds their rather chilly papa (Plummer) before helping them outrun the Nazis, Andrews exudes a vibrancy that's hard to resist. But the real secret of the film's success lies in its brilliant songs ('Do-Re-Mi', 'Edelweiss', 'The Lonely Goatherd', 'My Favorite Things'), every one of them a toe-tapping classic which will buzz around your head for days. So, ignore those reservations and enjoy. Escapist films about, well, escaping, don't come any better than this. Verdict A film virtually immune to criticism, The Sound Of Music delights and repels with the sureness of Marmite.

All About Eve(彗星美人)1950 (彗星美人)
Bette Davis excels as an aging diva in the six times Oscar Winner. Sit back and 'Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night' Davis gives one of the performances of her career portraying aging stage diva Margot Channing with a painful air of authenticity: the camp star, still awesome but aware of the ravages of time and the threat of younger actresses snapping at her heels. What she needs is someone to follow her around, look after her and worship her, and that person seems to arrive in the form of Eve (Baxter), an apparently innocent, adoring fan. But of course appearances can be deceptive, and we know from the opening scene that somehow the mousy, unassuming Eve has


herself become a big star. Mankiewicz triumphs as writer and director. The piece fizzes with energy and the bitchy lines flow, largely from Davis' wickedly crooked mouth. The entire cast is on top form (Marilyn Monroe makes an early, fleeting cameo appearance), although among the actors only Sanders won an Oscar for his superb turn as the louche theatre critic, Addison De Witt, who also serves as the film's narrator. Verdict One of Hollywood's finest backstage dramas. If nothing else Davis should have been rewarded for services to the tobacco industry.

M*A*S*H(风流医生俏护士)1970 (风流医生俏护士)
Robert Altman's anti-establishment comedy set during the Korean War but satirising the US Vietnam war effort. Stars Donald Sutherland, Elliot Gould and Robert Duvall 'I wonder how a depraved person like that could have reached a position of responsibility in the Army Medical Corps,' enquires the straight-laced 'Hot Lips' Houlihan (Kellerman) of anarchic surgeon Hawkeye (Sutherland). 'He was enlisted,' comes the deadpan reply. From this exchange, it's clear that Robert Altman was never going to be anything other than merciless in his critique of the absurdity of the military. Based on a novel by Richard Hooker and following the fortunes of a group of rebellious surgeons stationed in a Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) during the Korean war, M*A*S*H is actually a thinly veiled indictment of the Vietnam conflict (Altman removed all references to Korea just to be sure). The puerile antics of Hawkeye, Trapper (Gould) and Duke (Skerritt) are juxtaposed with graphic, bloody shots of surgical cases to highlight the terrible waste of life that war brings. With its grainy, washed-out colours and documentary style camera-work, Altman has created a film that looks like authentic newsreel footage. His trademark overlapping dialogue technique is used to full effect, exposing the pointless bureaucracy inherent in military terminology. The largely improvised script drips with sarcasm, and Sutherland and Gould spark off each other with rapier wit and devastating put-downs. On its release it was the perfect summation of the politically charged times and everything that Mike Nichols' adaptation of the similarly iconoclastic Catch 22 should have been. Quite simply, it's Altman at his irreverent, hilarious best.

Apocalypse Now Redux(现代启示录)1979 (现代启示录)
Francis Ford Coppola's legendary Vietnam epic, now with 50 extra minutes of footage. Only a restored sequence set in a French plantation truly enhances our understanding of the film As wonderful as it is to see Coppola's epic back where it belongs, Apocalypse Now Redux comes with a caveat. Whatever you might have heard about the 50 plus minutes of new footage, there's little here that qualifies as must-see material. A new scene with the Playboy bunnies, a bit more splashing about in the surf, bonus footage of Brando mooching about - as with the Star Wars special editions, you'll search out the new stuff rather than have the new stuff present you with a fresh take on the film. There is one exception - the French plantation sequence, glimpsed in the excellent documentary Hearts Of Darkness, is so enlightening, it's hard to see how the movie worked without it. Besides providing Clean (Fishburne) with a send-off, the scene satisfyingly rounds-out the character of Chef (Forrest), who, as a New Orleans native, speaks French and is actually a chef. And in Christian Marquand's landowner, Hubert De Marais, we find the embodiment of why America's war effort is as stupid as it is doomed to fail. Of course, some will argue that adding more minutes to Apocalypse Now simply makes a big, pretentious movie bigger and more pretentious. But for all the film's indulgences, it's still the small moments such as Lance (Bottoms) 'burying' Chief (Hall) that remain the most powerful. And if Apocalypse Now is what happens when a filmmaker reaches too far, we can only hope that i)


more directors follow suit and ii) Coppola stops wasting time on trivia like Jack and gets back in the boat he never should have got out of.

Gone with the wind(乱世佳人)1939 (乱世佳人)
The definitive Technicolor romantic epic. Rhett, Scarlett, burning sets and a whole slew of nostalgic and/or reactionary values, this is creator-producer David O Selznick's finest hour and a cornerstone of the Hollywood monolith Winner of 10 Oscars, hugely successful at the box office, containing one of the most quoted lines from the movies... With its place in film history assured, there is a distinct air of never mind the quality, feel the width when watching this with the cynical eyes of the modern viewer. Hugely expensive for its time, it has every dollar evident on screen, and it is easy to be seduced by its sumptuous visuals, to feel the heat of Atlanta burning. But this is Hollywood style over substance writ large, almost casually sexist and racist, using the Civil War as a convenient backdrop without ever addressing its social or historical significance. Dissecting it further, the plot is pure soap opera and the acting, particularly from Gable, is often wooden. Hollow and tasteless, it would be difficult to get angry about if it were not glorified and revisited so often. Verdict Grand old Hollywood at its most magnificent and melodramatic. Say what you like about the soapy characterisation and plotting, the spectacle flattens all in its wake.

Leon the Professional(这个杀手不太冷 这个杀手不太冷)1994 这个杀手不太冷
"The Professional" is a superficial yarn about a hitman (French star Jean Reno) who is befriended in his New York apartment building by an abused 12-year-old girl (newcomer Natalie Portman). When her family (to include her father, stepmother and two half-siblings - a teenage sister and 4-year-old brother) are killed by a vicious government agent (Gary Oldman), he reluctantly takes her in. The rest of the film, as you might imagine, has Reno recognizing a side of him that has been awakened by his paternal friendship with this little girl. And he eventually teaches her about being a "cleaner." The bulk of the film has Reno and Portman plotting to get revenge on Oldman and his henchmen. But Oldman's character is so over the top, so utterly ridiculous that the audience may feel prompted to laugh unintentionally. Oldman's character is an agent for the federal government's drug enforcement agency, whose offices are so poorly protected that not only does Reno get in to kill a few officers but even Portman manages to get past security with a bagful of guns! What Besson really seems interested in is balletic violence - slow-motion explosions, starkly lit bodies flying through the air. However, Sam Peckinpah he ain't.

Casablanca(卡萨布兰卡)1943 (卡萨布兰卡)
Some people feel it's impossible to really see Casablanca for the first time, because it's such a popular reference. Inevitably you've seen clips, heard As Time Goes By and admired those film stills of Humphrey Bogart looking smart in a white dinner jacket. You may even be familiar with the plot line: American ex-pat runs bar in Casablanca, clearing point for people trying to escape WWII. He runs into his old flame, now reunited with her husband. Much anguished conversation and poignant recollection of the Paris occupation, along with some mild run-ins with the Nazis and corrupt French police. Great ending too. There are really so many reasons why you ought to see this movie, but in the style of back-to-the-land religious weirdos everywhere, I scaled it down to a list of ten:


1. Ingrid Bergman has never looked so beautiful 2. You can never hope to look as good as Bogey in a white dinner jacket, but at least now you can try. 3. As Time Goes By, totally sentimental and sappy, but secretly you will love it and sing it to yourself in the bath for the next month. 4. All the immortal lines in context: "Play it again, Sam" "Of all the gin joints in all the world, you had to walk into mine" "Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon, and for the rest of your life!" 5. In this movie, even political asylum seekers get to hang out and drink champagne. 6. The great thing about this era of American filmmaking is that everyone is always ready for scotch and sex. And if you like this, you should see The Big Sleep, and all The Thin Man Movies. 7. If you've seen this movie, you can now fake your way through virtually any conversation in which films are being discussed, even if the last thing you saw in the theatre was The Phantom Menace and think M. Night Shyalaman is the greatest working director. 8. You can take someone you're thinking of dating to this movie and they'll think you a) have very good taste and, b) must be terribly sophisticated to even know about movies made before 1975. 9. You can inform your family that you've been attending enriching cultural events on the evenings you don't spend in the library. 10. If you hate this movie, feel free to go back to renting Shallow Hal and its ilk unmolested by pretentious hipsters.

Air Force One(空军一号 空军一号)1997 空军一号
It's difficult to take seriously any film in which the President Of The United States manages to lay waste to a whole bunch of hijackers without so much as loosening his tie, but then again Petersen's movie is so full of such inconsistencies that you go along with it in spite of itself. Ford is the Pres, the only man who can save his titular planeload of cronies - plus, of course, his wife and daughter - from the sneering Oldman and his terrorist buddies. A very silly picture, but an ultimately thrilling one; taken as a big dumb slice of popcorn entertainment it more than delivers the goods.

The Fugitive(亡命天涯)1993 (亡命天涯)
There is a kind of magic when a superb cast, a truly gifted director, and a literate script with equal parts 'over-the-top' action, riveting suspense, and rich characterization, come together. The end result attains a luster that only grows through the years, as new audiences, through DVD and VHS, experience the same excitement we felt, viewing it on a theater screen. In the last decade, only a handful of suspense films could be called 'great'...and on top of the list is THE FUGITIVE. Based on the popular David Janssen TV series, the film faithfully follows the same premise; a doctor is accused of his wife's death, but escapes before his execution, and tracks down the 'one-armed man' responsible for the murder, as a driven law officer attempts to recapture him. Being a big-budget film, however, the scale of everything is expanded...Dr. Richard Kimble is now a brilliant vascular surgeon, at a major Chicago hospital; the handicapped killer is a dirty ex-cop working on orders from crooked board members of a billion-dollar pharmaceutical firm; and the lawman is no longer a solitary police lieutenant, but a deputy United States Marshal, and his team of agents! While some fans of the original series complained that the 'intimacy' the series had was lost, director Andrew Davis only used the 'bigger' aspects as plot elements, placing the focus, wisely, on the dual stories of Kimble's search, and Gerard's pursuit. Despite the esteem the film has achieved over the years, Harrison Ford has gotten a bad rap for his very understated performance as Richard Kimble. While Tommy Lee Jones certainly had a far flashier role (earning him an Oscar as 'Best Supporting Actor'), Ford's intent wasn't to play 'Indiana Jones', but a man whose whole life was dedicated to his career as a surgeon, and his wife (played, in flashbacks, by the lovely Sela Ward). Seeing his wife brutally murdered devastated him (his scene in the police interrogation room, going to pieces, was largely improvised on the set, and displays some of his finest


acting). His search for the killer was not the confident quest of an action hero, but based on uncertain, spur-of-the-moment decisions made by a desperate man, whose medical background was his only tool. Fear does not lend itself to flashy theatrics... Jones, as Marshal Sam Gerard, on the other hand, was a seasoned veteran, the best at what he did, and pursuing a fugitive was 'old hat' for him. With a confidence bordering on arrogance, he ordered people about like chess pieces, multi-tasked without breaking a sweat, and still could charm with a wicked smile and sarcastic remark. Of COURSE he wins the audience's heart! Featuring some of the most spectacular action scenes ever recorded on film (the train/bus wreck that frees Kimble, the dive off a dam into the churning maelstrom of the reservoir), as well as two slam-bang fistfights when Kimble finally gets 'justice', THE FUGITIVE still is remembered primarily for the suspenseful Jones/Ford 'cat-and-mouse' chase, cross-country, and the grudging respect that grows between them...which, ultimately, was what the TV series was best remembered for, as well. There is magic, here!

The Patriot(爱国者)2000 (爱国者)
Mel Gibson is a movie star. A really big one, even. He's got charisma and presence and lights up the screen and is pleasingly handsome in a rugged, non-pretty-boy kind of way. He's funny and charming on talkshows and makes lots of money for all of the above. This much we know. What remains a bit of a mystery is how he maintains such status. His star-power is firmly rooted in the seemingly ancient Lethal Weapon series and the quip-throwing, fast drawing, scene-chewing character he plays in it seems to have overtaken his public persona as well. Does anyone actually know anyone who even saw Lethal Weapon 4? The more appropriate question perhaps being: does anybody remember it? Does anybody care? Since Mel Gibson is a movie star by trade, he is also tangentially an actor. And in his new film, The Patriot, he has a listless taciturnity that one could diplomatically describe as "understated" or, if so inclined, "Gary Cooper-ish." Ultimately, though, Gibson's performance just seems false -- hollow in an utterly competent, completely professional way. In the age of Jim Carrey and Fight Club, Being John Malkovich and Ben Stiller, Gibson's style of acting doesn't seem so much old school as plain inadequate. This is not to run roughshod over classical notions of subtlety or interiority, but merely to say that if he was once emblematic of his time, Gibson's moment has passed. Perhaps he is simply inching towards some exclusive hideaway of insignificance, where he can commiserate over the rising price of jet fuel with Kevin Costner and Harrison Ford. It's not all his fault, either, The Patriot. And it's not even that it's a bad movie, it's just not good either; it just is. Created by the director/producer team of Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin, The Patriot is caught in the double bind of wanting to be two semi-incompatible things at once. On the one hand, the project has the air of an important, high-style heritage picture about a simple farmer trying to escape his past sins and keep his family together during trying times. But set against the backdrop of the Revolutionary War, the movie continually feels an alternate pull towards being a blood-and-guts actioner. Over the course of its 2 1/2 hours, the film often seems at war with itself -- every time it starts to move with a steady flow, building momentum, it suddenly finds itself in a little narrative eddy, taking time out for a funeral, or a wedding, or to reiterate how bad the bad guys are (as in not good) and how the good guys are simple folk just trying to get along and colonially do their thing.

Jaws(大白鲨)1975 (大白鲨)
Great White Shark to the audience the impression is of course a no bloody role, as long as the game saw him on at all to get is definitely the movie of "rape angle." The story of the great white shark be shaped to a very strong image, not only bulky, but lethality is also very alarming, is definitely the most dangerous sea creatures. However, you have not thought about the film than we humans may be more frightening in the great white shark? We can see from the human point of view, because we are a group of ideas, but we can


justifiably hurt the other different types of creatures, and even their own selfish desires in order to harm his people. In comparison, What do you think are the world's most dangerous species? Jaws? Or us?

David Starkey's Monarchy(大卫 斯塔基的君主政体 大卫 斯塔基的君主政体)
Monarchy is more than the biographies of the kings and queens of England, it is an in-depth examination of what the English monarchy has meant in terms of the expression of the individual, the Mother of parliaments, Magna Carta, the laws of England and the land of England. In this series the eminent historian Dr David Starkey brings to life powerful individuals and colourful characters using his unique and engaging gift as a communicator.

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