Cannes 2003

Cannes 2003

Cannes just ain’t like it used to be – or so the critics would have us believe. Even though many have denounced this year’s line-up of films as one of the most disappointing in the festival’s history, Jason Wood found a few which made the journey worthwhile

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An Actor’s Revenge

An Actor’s Revenge

Kon Ichikawa was one of Japan’s most celebrated filmmakers, but outside his own country, his films have rarely received the attention they deserve. Ian Haydn Smith celebrates the DVD release of Ichikawa’s ‘magical blend of filmed theatre and expressionist cinema’

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The Last Great Wilderness

The Last Great Wilderness

While recent efforts from the Soho-based British film industry have been about as disheartening as an English summer, north of the border things look brighter. Bob Carroll gets lost in a Scottish comedy of gigolos, agoraphobics, and transvestite wakes

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Battleplans

The uneasy relationship between war and the media was highlighted during the recent Iraq conflict, with live battles and Hollywood-style rescues beamed directly onto our television screens. Chris S. Michaels looks back over the recent history of war in American cinema

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Antwone Fisher

Antwone Fisher

Great actors don’t often make great directors, but that doesn’t seem to stop them trying. Denzel Washington’s directorial debut is a biopic of sailor-turned-Hollywood screenwriter Antwone Fisher. Tim Smedley thinks he should have stayed in front of the camera

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Secretary

Office romances may not have contributed much to the coffers of classic cinema – but Steven Shainberg’s new film might be about to change all that. John Gorick applauds a twisted tale of sex, sado-masochism and secretarial skills

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Intacto

Juan Carlos Fresnadillo’s first film imagines a world in which good luck is a biological gift, and the genetically unlucky are doomed to a life of servitude. Bob Carroll is fortunate enough to catch one of this year’s most original debuts

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Ossessione

To coincide with the forthcoming Visconti season at the NFT, the Bfi has released several of the great director’s films on DVD. Richard Armstrong traces the influence of hard-boiled fiction, film noir and neo-realism in Ossessione

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25th Hour

25th Hour

Spike Lee’s latest film follows a small-time New York hood on his last day before beginning a seven-year prison sentence. Tim Smedley caught up with a "captivating and graceful" film that ranks alongside the director’s best work

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The Year of the Sex Olympics

The Year of the Sex Olympics

It’s official – reality TV is taking over, and this seminal British television drama from the pen of Nigel Kneale predicted it all over forty years ago. Andy Murray looks back over the groundbreaking series – with a bit of help from the writer himself

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East-West (Est-Ouest)

East-West (Est-Ouest)

By any stretch of the imagination, Stalinist Russia was not a nice place to live. Régis Warnier’s latest film dramatises one of the dictator’s many plots to lure traitorous Russians back to the Motherland, but Paul Clarke thinks it doesn’t go far enough

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X2

It’s bigger. It’s louder. It’s longer. And it’s got more mutants than before. X2, the second instalment in the X-Men trilogy, exploded onto our screens this month and heralded the arrival of the summer blockbusters. Ian Haydn Smith reckons it’ll be a hard act to follow

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Phone Booth

Phone Booth

It has to be one of the daftest pitches in history – an action thriller set entirely within the confines of a New York phone box, directed by high-concept king Joel Schumacher. It may not be a masterpiece, but Bob Carroll enjoyed it – in a B-movie kind of way

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Ararat

Atom Egoyan is no stranger to difficult subjects, and his latest film revisits the little-known massacre of Armenians perpetrated by Turkish troops in 1915. It may pull in the crowds, but Darren Arnold reckons it’s one of the most intelligent films of the year

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Lilja 4-Ever

Lilja 4-Ever

Lukas Moodysson’s third film swaps the domestic Swedish settings of his previous films for the harsh realities of the life of a teenage girl in Russia. Edward Lamberti thinks it misses the mark

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Pure

In the mid 90s, following the success of The Grass Arena and Small Faces, Gillies MacKinnon was one of the hottest names in British filmmaking, but his last few films haven’t shown quite the same promise. Hannah Patterson reckons his latest, a family drama set near Upton Park, marks a welcome return to the director’s roots

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