The Herald Magazine - - Arts CINEMA -

com­edy. In­sert­ing it later runs the risk of leav­ing the au­di­ence feel­ing cheated.

Caine han­dles the job of bal­anc­ing light and shade su­perbly. Given he more or less in­vented the style in Al­fie, one would ex­pect no less. The rest are a mixed bag, with Broad­bent mis­cast as the hair-trig­gered Terry.

The film’s best mo­ment comes when Marsh cuts in shots of the cast in their young days. Had King of Thieves taken the same kind of sub­tle, melan­cholic ap­proach, it might have left less of an iffy taste in the mouth.

A far more sat­is­fy­ing look at grow­ing older is pro­vided in Lucky (15), **** the penul­ti­mate film made by the late


Dir: Jon M Chu

With: Con­stance Wu, Michelle Yeoh Run­time: 121 min­utes

THE USP of Jon M Chu’s ro­man­tic com­edy, a US box of­fice smash, is that it is the first main­stream re­lease since 1983’s The Joy Luck Club to feature a mostly Asian-Amer­i­can cast. Con­stance Wu plays Rachel Chu, an eco­nom­ics pro­fes­sor from New York who falls in love with a chap from a fab­u­lously wealthy Sin­ga­porean fam­ily. Based on Kevin Kwan’s best­seller, it is Cin­derella given a makeover. Michelle Yeoh is ex­cel­lent as the chilly mother-in-law to be who thinks Rachel is a gold-dig­ger. Just a pity that it even­tu­ally takes on the thun­der­ing pre­dictabil­ity of a Richard Cur­tis rom­com and be­comes te­dious, ac­tu­ally.

THE RIDER (15) ****

Dir: Chloe Zhao

With: Brady Jan­dreau, Lilly Jan­dreau Run­time: 103 min­utes

SET in South Dakota, Chloe Zhao’s drama looks at cow­boy life to­day through the tale of young Brady Black­burn, rodeo rider and horse whis­perer. When we first meet Brady (Brady Jan­dreau) he is just be­gin­ning to re­cover from a head in­jury. Told by doc­tors he should not ride again, Brady tries hard to ad­just to life out­side the rodeo ring. Zhao’s film is re­mark­able in that all the cast are non-ac­tors who de­liver ter­rific per­for­mances, Brady es­pe­cially. Slow to start but The Rider pulls you into its em­brace.

Se­lected re­lease in­clud­ing DCA, Septem­ber 21-27; Film­house, Ed­in­burgh and Bel­mont, Aberdeen, Septem­ber 28-Oc­to­ber 4

Harry Dean Stan­ton. Helmed by ac­tor John Car­roll Lynch (Norm Gun­der­son in Fargo), here mak­ing his di­rec­to­rial de­but, it is a quiet, el­e­gant farewell to all that.

The Repo Man star plays Lucky, who is liv­ing on his own in a small town in Ari­zona, cling­ing to his daily rou­tine of get­ting up, go­ing to the diner, the bar, watch­ing TV, do­ing his crosswords and smok­ing, for­ever smok­ing. Hav­ing al­ways been in good shape, de­spite the smok­ing, Lucky reck­ons he has a few more years yet, but then a fall at home forces him to re­con­sider.

A star-stud­ded sup­port­ing cast, in­clud­ing his friend David Lynch, di­rec­tor of the sim­i­larly themed The Straight Story (in which Dean Stan­ton also starred), and Ed Be­g­ley Jr, turn out in a se­ries of scenes, some more suc­cess­ful than oth­ers at get­ting their point across. The best are those where no one is try­ing to say very much at all.

Funny, gor­geously shot and with a fine sound­track, Lucky is a mood piece that sur­prises, de­lights, but above all moves. Cin­ema was lucky to have Harry Dean Stan­ton.

King of Thieves: gen­eral re­lease. Lucky: GFT, Bel­mont Film­house, DCA, Dundee, till Septem­ber 20, and on de­mand; Film­house Ed­in­burgh, Septem­ber 28-Oc­to­ber 2.

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