Films of the week: A classic from the cutting edge of future visions in Blade Runner: the Final Cut
Friday 20 September 2013
Blade Runner: the Final Cut
(Ridley Scott, 1982) Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi noir thriller and philosophical mood piece – adapted from a novel by Philip K Dick – is so fully and gorgeously realised that every subsequent cinematic vision of the future has owed it a debt. Harrison Ford stars as a man (and don't listen to those who'll tell you otherwise) grown weary of his job hunting enslaved androids. Rutger Hauer and Sean Young also star. *****
(Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1947) In what may be the most distinctive of all British melodramas, Deborah Kerr heads a mission to establish a Catholic convent in the Himalayas, where the isolation, unfamiliar local customs and suppressed sexual desire can play terrible tricks on a young nun's mind. The Technicolor scenery couldn't have seemed more vivid had Powell and Pressburger shot on location. *****
(John Sayles, 1996) The sheriff of a small Texan border town (Chris Cooper) reopens a decades-old murder case involving the previous sheriff, who was his father, and at the same time rekindles a romance with his Mexican teenage sweetheart. As well as a police procedural and romance, this is a multi-stranded, richly textured and deftly told modern great about race, family and community. *****
2pm & 10.05pm Sky Movies Premiere
(Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris, 2012) Ruby Sparks (Zoe Kazan) is artistic and quirky and the dream girl of a depressed twenty-something novelist (Paul Dano). But she isn't real. Or at least she wasn't, before she stepped out of the pages of his new manuscript. A witty and wryly reflective film, that has a lot of fun deconstructing the "manic pixie dream girl" archetype of so many other indie relationships comedies. ****
(Aaron Katz, 2010) Cold Weather looks like every other mumblecore indie about a diffident twenty-something college dropout in Portland, Oregon – until its hero (Cris Lankenau) unexpectedly turns amateur sleuth. Then, while maintaining every scrap of its scruffy and seemingly artless naturalism, it also turns into a properly involving comedy-mystery thriller. Which is actually a very clever trick.****
(John Boulting, 1947) This brilliant, cruel, noir-ish Graham Greene adaptation makes fine use of its locations: it takes place not only in a jolly pre-war seaside town but in "another Brighton of dark alleyways and festering slums"; and, most of all, inside the oppressively godless and paranoid psyche of its young hoodlum antihero, Pinky (Richard Attenborough). *****
11pm Channel 5
(Quentin Tarantino, 1992) A bank heist goes wrong, and the surviving criminals rendezvous at a warehouse to point the finger of blame and their guns at each other. Quentin Tarantino's influential low-budget debut showed off his command of foul-mouthed vernacular and confident way with genre material, a bold approach to storytelling and a black, almost sadistic, sense of humour. *****
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