Thursday, 1 June 2006

Cat People

I’m still not convinced why anyone would call a movie The Banger Sisters but I haven’t seen it so who knows. Maybe its good ? Let me know. Its on, Friday night and stars Goldie Hawn and Susan Sarandon.
Galaxy Quest (Sat 9 730P) has somewhat of a cult following but is a better-than-average comedy I thought. I must confess that I never laughed so hard as when the end credits began to roll and they had the “what happened next” to each of the characters. Almost worth sitting through just for that*. Alan Rickman is a funny, funny man. (*Although I may not find it that funny were I to watch it again now. So, what you going to do ? Sue me ?)
Further to last week’s ‘heads up’ regarding the Val Lewton produced horror films, three are on this week. Possibly the best of the lot Cat People (Tue 2 12A), its sequel Curse of the Cat People (Wed 2 12A) and The Leopard Man (Wed 2 120A). Both Cat People and Leopard Man are directed by French great Jacques Tourneur who teamed up with Lewton three times (the other, I Walked With A Zombie). The iconic images from Cat People is Irena (the eponymous cat person) stalking Alice (the lover’s rival) through the night streets, Alice’s fear in the swimming pool and Irena’s hand reaching into a birdcage. A great review has been written here. It stars Simone Simon as the curvy but cursed cat (we’re talking big wild cat here, not tame pussy cat). I had the surreal experience not long after watching this vibrant 30 year old women on screen to read in the newspaper of her death in 2005, aged 95. I couldn’t reconcile the two ideas. Also stars Tom Conway as a doctor however he is no relation. My sister can breath a sigh of relief.
Curse of the Cat People is likewise excellent but apart from premise, an entirely different movie to its “prequel.” More psychologically rewarding than the others but less supernatural (despite Simone Simon as a ghost … oh well).
Also on Wednesday night, French drama The Piano Teacher (SBS 10P) which stars Isabelle Huppert and is directed by Michael Haneke. The double life of a stern piano teacher who leads a secret life at night when she satisfies her sexual appetite. It is supposed to be excellent and has been described as having a “dark beauty” so I suspect it is not for the faint hearted nor for the good lady wife, perhaps.

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