Film Four & Film Four +1 18-05-09

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FilmFour (last updated Mon 18 May 2009, 05:25 BST)

Down to Earth (Film)

The first in a week long season of Rita Hayworth films. Terpsichore, the Greek Muse of the Dance, persuades "Mr Jordan" to send her to Earth to help Broadway producer Danny Miller stage his musical about the Nine Muses. She succeeds in bringing refinements to the show and is, naturally, given the starring role. But unsurprisingly, Broadway audiences are not ready for refinement and the show flops. Miller insists on restoring his original jazzed-up treatment and an understandably miffed Terpsichore asks Jordan's permission to return to Parnassus. But when Miller reveals that the gangster who backed the show will kill him if it flops, she agrees to stay on. Writers Edward Blum and Don Hartman ingeniously came up with an enjoyable screenplay using characters created by Harry Segall in his play Heaven Can Wait, which was turned into a successful film of the same name in 1943. Directed by Alexander Blum.
Director: Alexander Hall
Starring: Rita Hayworth, Larry Parks, Marc Platt, Roland Culver, James Gleason, Edward Everett Horton
(1947, U, 4 Star)

The Man in Grey (Film)

Gainsborough Studio's first outing into costume melodrama is this effort by Leslie Arliss starring four of Britain's top actors. Regency beauty Clarissa Richmond is warned by a fortune-teller that her friendship with actress Hesther Shaw will bring her disaster. And, as the two become involved with rakes Lord Rohan and Swindon Rokeby, so the warning seems true as hearts are shattered and promises broken. Critically panned, the film nevertheless took the box office by storm and was given a second West End premiere to cancel out memories of the first. Edited for content.
Director: Leslie Arliss
Starring: Margaret Lockwood, Phyllis Calvert, James Mason, Stewart Granger, Harry Scott, Martita Hunt
(Black and White, Subtitles, 1943, PG, 3 Star)

The Left Hand of God (Film)

American flier Jim Carmody poses as a Catholic village priest in 1947 China after escaping from Chinese warlord Mieh Yang, for whom he has been working as a military advisor. But the disguise of the cloth can't hide his feelings for missionary worker Anne Scott.
Director: Edward Dmytryk
Starring: Humphrey Bogart, Gene Tierney, Lee J. Cobb, Agnes Moorehead, E.G. Marshall, Jean Porter
(Widescreen, Subtitles, 1955, PG, 3 Star)

Bugsy Malone (Film)

Alan Parker's BAFTA-winning 30s gangster pastiche, featuring an all-juvenile cast, stars Scott Baio as Bugsy Malone, a boxer recruited to Fat Sam's mob. Sam is in the middle of a battle with Dandy Dan, whose gang have a new splat gun that distributes immoblising custard pies. Bugsy's task is to get hold of these deadly weapons, but thrown into the mix are his moll Blousey Brown and vampish singer Tallulah.
Director: Alan Parker
Starring: Scott Baio, Florrie Dugger, Jodie Foster, John Cassisi, Martin Lev, Paul Murphy
(Subtitles, 1976, U, 3 Star)

The Waterboy (Film)

Adam Sandler stars in Frank Coraci's comedy as Bobby Boucher, the waterboy of a top Louisiana university American football team. Fired, he gets hired by coach Klein of the Mud Dogs, a team on a 40-game winning streak. But when Bobby reveals a hidden talent for football, he's offered the chance to lead the team to glory and a chance to get one over the team who sacked him at the championship game. Kathy Bates features in scene stealing mode as Bobby's possessive, manipulative mother.
Director: Frank Coraci
Starring: Adam Sandler, Kathy Bates, Fairuza Balk, Henry Winkler, Jerry Reed, Larry Gilliard Jr.
(Widescreen, Subtitles, 1998, 12, 2 Star)

Four Brothers (Film)

Four adopted brothers reunite when their mother is killed in a botched robbery. In the course of finding those responsible they soon realise the crime is not as straight forward as it at first seems and the revenge they seek will not be easy to obtain.
Director: John Singleton
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Tyrese Gibson, André Benjamin, Garrett Hedlund, Terrence Howard, Josh Charles
(Widescreen, 2005, 15, 3 Star)

Cabaret Balkan (Film)

Goran Paskaljevic's Oscar-nominated film is set in Belgrade on a freezing winter night. Disparate characters are seen in a series of incidents, some graphically violent, some metaphorically so, all telling in allegory the recent troubled, violent history of Yugoslavia.
Director: Goran Paskaljevic
Starring: Mirjana Jokovic, Miki Manojlovic, Mira Banjac, Nebojsa Glogovac, Ana Sofrenovic, Dragan Nikolic
(Subtitles, In Serbo/Croat With English Subtitles, 1998, 18, 4 Star)

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