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Friday, March 4, 2005

Short Takes: March 4, 2005


Cellular

Director: David R. Ellis
Language: English
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

Kim Basinger stars in this taut B-movie thriller as Jessica, a high-school science teacher who is kidnapped (for reasons unknown). Held in an attic, she manages to patch together a smashed telephone and succeeds in getting a call out. The random recipient of the call, however, is a twentysomething surfer, who is initially skeptical about the veracity of Jessica's tale and slow to heed her pleas for help.


I Am David

Director: Paul Feig
Language: English
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

This adaptation of Anne Holm's international best seller tells the story of David, a 12-year-old boy who escapes from a concentration camp in Bulgaria immediately after World War II. After gaining his freedom, he heads for Denmark to search for his missing mother. As the boy travels through Greece, Italy and Switzerland, meeting many people, he gradually learns how to trust, love and smile again.


Intermission

Director: John Crowley
Language: English
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

This dark ensemble comedy set in Dublin revolves around 11 main characters -- including a dimwitted supermarket worker, his ex-girlfriend, her newly married boyfriend, a two-bit thief (pre-"Alexander" Collin Farrel) and a self-promoting detective. The fragmented story, which somehow manages to work in a failed robbery, the versatility of brown sauce, a woman's mustache and much more, kicks off with the breakup of a young couple. This sets off a rippling series of events that ultimately cause all the lives of the main characters in intersect.


Leo

Director: Mehdi Norowzian
Language: English
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

The stories of two seemingly unrelated characters -- Stephen, a convict released from prison after serving 15 years; and Leo, a boy who has a mother who refuses to love him due to the circumstances leading to his birth -- are woven into one, as Stephen corresponds with Leo and the hidden truth about the two is revealed. While loosely connected to two characters in James Joyce's "Ulysses," the film is set in the Deep South.


Son frere

Director: Patrice Chereau
Language: French
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

When Thomas contracts a mysterious blood disease, he turns to his gay brother Luc for support, even though they haven't spoken in years. What compels Luc to care for his arrogant, difficult, homophobic brother? The movie is never really clear about this and Luc himself seems unsure -- he just can't tear himself away when other family and friends get fed up and leave. But redemption comes for Luc in the end when he's peaceful in the knowledge that he has done all that he can for Thomas, and in the deep unspoken love they come to share for each other. (Kaori Shoji)



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