Film Four & Film Four +1 29-06-08.
Astra 2D at 28.2E 10729 V SYM:22000 FEC 5/6
Film Four SID8335 VPID2312 APID2313 Eng
Film Four +1 SID8330 VPID2332 APID2333 Eng
(2001) Casino magnate John Cleese pits a bunch of ordinary Joes against each other in a race to win $2m.Hollywood revisits the zany chase comedy in this frantically funny, endlessly inventive old-fashioned gag-fest. Casino magnate John Cleese pits a bunch of ordinary Joes against each other in a race to win $2m
Rat Race Yuppies, lottery dolts and corporate raiders take heart, Rat Race finally proves that greed is good - good for a laugh, that is. Director Zucker showed plenty of comic nous with Airplane! and further demonstrates his gift for broad, knowing, loony humour here. Returning to that long-neglected sub-genre, the chase comedy, he harnesses the comic talent of John Cleese, Rowan Atkinson, Whoopi Goldberg and, er, Cuba Gooding Jr to shake up a stupid, yet sophisticated, cocktail of slapstick, surrealism, gross-out and Hitler jokes. Las Vegas casino magnate Donald Sinclair (Cleese), selects nine ordinary 'low rollers' at random by putting special gold coins into his slot machines and sets them scuttling across America in pursuit of loot. It's simple: the first person to reach the locker at Silver City train station, New Mexico, gets to keep the $2m deposited there. He does it so a cabal of compulsive high rollers can follow their progress from the comfort of the casino, wagering vast sums at every turn.
I Was a Male War Bride
(1949) Cary Grant is a French officer who marries an American WAC in post-war Germany and then must become a 'war bride'.Howard Hawks comedy starring Cary Grant as a Frenchman who falls for Ann Sheridan's American officer while they're working together in post-war Germany but then faces a farcical conflict with US Army bureaucracy
The "I Was A..." movie title formula frequently indicates a B-movie, or indeed a B horror movie (I Was a Teenage Werewolf, for example), but in this case it's deployed for something that's very much an A-movie, starring the immortal Cary Grant and directed by top rank director Howard Hawks. It's the fourth of their five collaborations, which began with 1938's screwball classic Bringing Up Baby. Although this isn't in quite the same league, it isn't far off. One slight issue with the film is the fact that Grant is stepping outside his usual comfort zone of well-dressed American(ish) charmers to play Henri Rochard, a French army captain. Though rest assured that for the former Archie Leach, one accent was basically good enough for his Cary Grant persona, so there's no weird triangulated mid-Atlantic accent. The premise of the film is basically a comic extrapolation of the notion that American combatants who fell in love, married and brought their new wives back to the States under the conditions of the 1945 War Brides were invariably male, but in this case it's a female American officer who falls in love and marries. This results in a situation that ultimately involves Rochard having to resort to drag (not a first in Grant's Hawks collaborations, and only one of his many humiliations here) in a gesture that pokes fun at the rigid attitudes male-centric military that cannot legally or administratively accommodate a new male spouse of one of its female officers. ("According to the War Department, I [em]am[/em] my wife." "You can't be your wife!" " If the American Army says I can be my wife, who am I to dispute them?")
When the film starts, Henri and American Women's Army Corps Lieutenant Catherine Gates (Sheridan) already know each other - in fact they have a bit of a history, something that brings about a certain bickering and friction when they're assigned to work together in the German town of Bad Neuheim. Their mission is a secret one involving recruiting a German lens-maker, but this story thread is really just an armature upon which to build the developing relationship between Henri and Catherine. Their mission sees them travelling through war-torn Germany with Henri suffering a series of mishaps. Indeed, most of the film's humour is based on Henri's misfortunes, all accompanied by flirtatious arguments between the pair. Gradually they realise their love-hate relationship is actually more about the former emotion, and the pair marry. Which is where their problems really start.
Very Important Person
(1961) Lively World War II comedy, starring James Robertson Justice as a bombastic scientist who ends up in a German POW camp.An eminent navy officer is caught behind enemy lines and does everything in his power to escape. Wartime farce starring James Robertson Justice and a clutch of British comedy legends
Very Important Person Few could play blustering pomposity as well as James Robertson Justice. Guaranteed a place in the British cinema Hall Of Fame courtesy of his recurring role as Sir Lancelot Spratt in the Doctor series, the burly character player also lent his bushy beard and booming voice to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, John Huston's Moby Dick and The Guns Of Navarone. Very Important Person finds Justice doing what he does best, namely playing it for laughs. As Sir Ernest Pease KBE FRS, our hero has the misfortune to parachute directly into a British POW camp. With the Germans determined to make him talk, Pease - who takes an alias to maintain his anonymity - finds himself accompanying the garrulous Jimmy Cooper (Phillips) to another Stalag where the noble knight is promptly sent to Coventry by his fellow inmates. But while the rank and file are convinced Pease is a German stooge, their superiors recognise him as a VIP whose escape becomes their new priority.
Revenge of the Pink Panther
(1978) Peter Sellers' final appearance as Inspector Clouseau before the actor's untimely death.Yet more comedy with the inept Inspector Clouseau. Blake Edwards once more directs Peter Sellers in this tale of a French drug connection
Revenge Of The Pink Panther Although Revenge of the Pink Panther was only the sixth film in the series, Sellers, who had starred in all but one of the previous films, died before the release of the follow-up, 1982's Trail Of The Pink Panther (which was constructed using outtakes from the previous films for the Clouseau elements). Revenge Of The Pink Panther see director Edwards letting his star have free rein on the jokes rather than holding him into the narrative of a good comedy.
The world thinks Clouseau is dead, presumed murdered, but actually he has gone undercover to crack a secretive drug ring. There's a 'French connection' to Hong Kong, where Clouseau heads for the film's finale.
Most of the jokes revolve around funny voices, bad disguises (we see Clouseau dressing up as, among other things, Toulouse Lautrec and a Mafia don) and gags about how funny foreigners are. Kwouk (who has had his Cato role beefed up for this installment) and Lom (returning as Chief Inspector Dreyfus, whose mental health recovers when he hears Clouseau is dead) do their best with varying degrees of success. Meanwhile, Dyan Cannon does little more than sit on the sidelines mugging.
Big Momma's House
(2000) Martin Lawrence plays Malcolm Turner, an FBI agent assigned to protect Sherry Pierce and her son from her psychotic ex-boyfriend Lester.In which Martin Lawrence's FBI agent dons a fat suit and pretends to be an old lady
If you've seen Raging Bull , you'll know that Jake LaMotta had to throw a few fights to get a crack at the world middleweight title. One can but assume Paul Giamatti struck a similar Faustian pact. Why else would such a gifted actor agree to play a supporting role in a film as rancid as Big Momma's House if it wasn't to advance his future career? While the Sideways star has been well-rewarded for his sacrifice, leading man Martin Lawrence continues to star in films like this, the paucity of which is underlined by the presence of Raja Gosnell (Scooby-Doos number one and one and two) behind the camera.
Lawrence's failure to move on from this slapstick and prosthetic-heavy comedy seems born of laziness and limitation rather than misfortune. He's certainly been well compensated for his shortage of talent - he was paid $20 million for the status quo-threatening National Security.
The story of an undercover FBI agent who pulls on a wig and a fat suit to protect a federal witness - Long, who's got lost in the shuffle following her strong work in Boiler Room - this'll only appeal to lovers of Lawrence and those fascinating moviegoers who've an insatiable appetite for the Wayans family. On the bright side, those who love the film will find Big Momma's House 2 every bit as entertaining, what with it being even crasser.
The Fifth Element
(1997) Luc Besson's stunning, audacious science fiction thriller stars Bruce Willis as an ex-government agent, now reduced to driving a taxi.Luc Besson's big budget sci-fi extravaganza set in the 24th century. Bruce Willis, Milla Jovovich, Gary Oldman, Ian Holm and Chris Tucker star
Fifth Element Famously The Fifth Element is based on a novel that director Luc Besson wrote when he was 16. It shows. This is an incredibly juvenile film. There's a masturbatory fantasy involving a supermodel landing in the lap of a tough guy hero, nerdy space creatures, invented languages and a complete disregard for logic and reality. Fortunately, the parallels end there. Unlike most teenage outpourings, this gloriously camp film never takes itself too seriously - and it's very entertaining. The story is ridiculous. It opens looking like Raiders Of The Lost Ark where an archaeologist is uncovering an incredible secret. Just as he's worked out that there's going to be a terrible dark force attacking the Earth in 300 years, huge aliens arrive, he faints and the film fast forwards to the 24th century. There, an incompetent president is desperately trying to cope with the now impending crisis: a huge malevolent planet is attacking the world. "All we know is it just keeps getting bigger," is the scientific opinion.
Kindly aliens try to return the five elements that will save everyone. Unfortunately, a greedy evil Texan is doing his best to mess things up. Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg (Oldman, shouting, cackling and preening with great panache) has sent some alien mercenaries to pick up the elements so he can sell them. The ship carrying the fifth element is blown up. Luckily Earth scientists are able to recreate it from a single cell. It turns out to be a supreme being Leeloo (Milla Jovovich). However, Leeloo doesn't want to hang around with the boffins and so runs out of the lab, jumps off a skyscraper and crashes into the passing taxi of the military-trained Korben Dallas (Willis). The scene is set for a race against time to retrieve the other four elements and for Dallas to fulfil the mission given to him by his old army boss: "save the world".
(1996) Nils Gaup's tough western is set in 1890s Alaska and stars Christopher Lambert and James Caan.