Daily Archives: April 16, 1996

For The Moment

A very moving love story about an Australian airman in training in Canada during World War II and a prairie woman whose husband is already overseas. Canadian writer-director and coproducer Aaron Kim Johnston handles both the period ambience and the actors with great sensitivity; without much exaggeration one could say that this is the way they used to make good moviesespecially English movies in the Brief Encounter mode. With Russell Crowe, Christianne Hirt, Wanda Cannon, and Scott Kraft. (JR) Read more

Hate (la Haine)

A black-and-white 1994 French film by writer-director Mathieu Kassovitz (Cafe au Lait) about racism in the Paris suburbs. It focuses on three alienated youthsone black (Hubert Kounde), one North African (Said Taghmaoui), and one a working-class Jew (Vincent Cassel)who go on an all-night spree after a race riot sparked by police brutality. Though some of this might seem a bit old to Americans, Kassovitz has some things of his own to sayand he says them with nuance, feeling, and authority. In French with subtitles. 96 min. (JR) Read more

The Substitute

At first glance it’s just another entry in the series of delayed Blackboard Jungle spin-offs in which a principled teacherhere, ironically, a CIA mercenary (Tom Berenger)gains respect from a bunch of rowdy inner-city kids, in this case while substituting for his girlfriend (Diane Venora). But vying with this plotline, and ultimately overtaking it, are some kick-ass action sequences deriving from the fact that the principal is running a drug business out of the Miami school in question, in collusion with its leading gang. The results are lively if periodically silly; it’s too bad more use wasn’t made of the powerhouse Venora. With Ernie Hudson, Glenn Plummer, Richard Brooks, Marc Anthony, and Raymond Cruz; directed by Robert Mandel from a script by Roy Frumkes, Rocco Simonelli, and Alan Ormsby. (JR) Read more