Death Watch (12A)
Bertrand Tavernier, 129mins. Starring: Romy Schneider, Harvey Keitel, Harry Dean Stanton
French auteur Bertrand Tavernier's 1980 Glasgow-set dystopian yarn (re-released in a restored version) is one of the director's most intriguing and idiosyncratic films.
Shot in widescreen, it has an epic quality that few British movies of its period match. The film is also prophetic in its anticipation of reality TV at its most vicious and intrusive.
Tavernier's casting is eclectic, combining Harvey Keitel (in full Method mode) with German film actress Romy Schneider, a sleazy-looking Harry Dean Stanton, Ingmar Bergman favourite Max von Sydow and (in a cameo as a chauffeur) a youthful, very trim Robbie Coltrane. Schneider plays a woman told she is terminally ill and offered a small fortune for her illness and death to be shown on TV.
Keitel is the opportunist with the camera implanted in his brain who films her as she roams across Glasgow and the Highlands. Tavernier eschews typical sci-fi conventions, foregrounding character and dialogue instead. Schneider brings a sensitivity and fierceness to her role as the victim/guinea pig that reminds you of Isabelle Huppert at her best.
TV reviewBroadcasting House was preparing for a visit from Prince Charles spoiler alert
Glastonbury Michael Eavis reveals final headline act 'most likely' British pair
Film Ewan McGregor joins star-studded Beauty and the Beast cast as Lumiere
TVThe Island with Bear Grylls under fire after male contestants kill and eat rare crocodile
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 3 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
- 4 Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
- 5 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'