“Look, a pillar of fire”, says the youthful Peter O’Toole in the title role, to which the reply comes, “No, Orense. It is dust”. Just one of many acutely observed exchanges in David Lean’s cinematic master work, Lawrence of Arabia, re-released in its restored 70mm print.
Far from a voyeuristic exploration of the theme, which was attempted in recent blockbusters, Luis Buñuel’s iconic film re-introduces an artistic vision of the infinite shades of female desire and sexuality to contemporary audiences, in its 50th anniversary 4k restoration.
Moon Dogs ascribes to be a Celtic coming of age tale that sees a musically inspired teenager, Thor played by Christy O’Donnell struggling to come to terms with his father’s new invocation into a new family in the Shetland Islands. When his live music debut gig on a Celtic night fails he seizes the opportunity to run away to the mainland to find the mother who abandoned him as a youngster.
Just as legendary comedian, Dave Chapelle, announces a series of 10 Radio City performances in New York in August, the discussion about the role of the stand up emerges once again. “I could quit my show, and that’s one kind of difficulty, but quitting doing stand-up would be another,” Chapelle admitted in an interview in the New York Times, earlier this year.
First and foremost, any film with Francois Cluzet is worth a look. He is a fine movie actor from the top drawer -a Dustin Hoffman without the verbiage. His performances over the years genuinely grow in authenticity as he straddles each fluctuating zeitgeist. He represents us, the ordinary man or woman absorbing the pressure of a given circumstance until he breaks and is forced to act.
“Women’s colleges should be levelled to the ground!” a news commentator is heard saying close to the beginning of the film. It is 1888 and something as simple as a young woman travelling on her own by tube could be perceived as “an orgy of independence” according to Bell’s half sister. Yet, not only is she among a handful of women reading Modern History at Oxford University and the single one to achieve a first, but also, perhaps, the only one taking on exhaustive and at times life threatening mountain climbing in the Alps, followed by repeated travels in the Middle East and ending up providing services to the British Military Intelligence after World War I.