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Cinema

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FILM RETROSPECTIVES

A nostalgic (but not blindly nostalgic) look back at some cult and classic movies. Are they worth checking out once you take off the rose-tinted glasses? Find out in this retrospective section.

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) directed by Robert Aldrich

Bitter real-life rivals Bette Davis and Joan Crawford play two erstwhile celebrity sisters caught in a downward spiral of faded glories and an abusive/controlling relationship. This cult classic is as relevant now in its ugly dissection of the cult of celebrity as it was when it was released.

Bette Davis Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?

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Repo Man (1984) written and directed by Alex Cox

This defiant cult debut mixes drama, satire, sci-fi, action and punk music in a deconstruction of the myth of America's success story.

Emilio Estevez and Zander Schloss in Repo Man

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Les Diaboliques (1955) directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot

This adaptation of Pierre Boileau & Thomas Narcejac's novel is a darkly potent thriller full of suspense and twists which proved to be a major inspiration for Alfred Hitchcock.

Véra Clouzot in Les Diaboliques

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Big Trouble in Little China (1986) directed by John Carpenter

Kurt Russell plays Jack Burton, one of his most iconic yet buffoonish characters, in this zippy and witty homage to Chinese and Japanese swordplay fantasies, trucker movies and screwball comedies.

James Hong in Big Trouble in Little China

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Aguirre, Wrath Of God (1972) directed by Werner Herzog

Herzog's historical account of the hopeless delusion of the 16th-century Spanish conquistador expedition to the fabled land of El Dorado is a chaotic but masterful stream of cinematic bolts out of the blue. A genuinely deranged Klaus Kinski stands at the film's centre.

Klaus Kinski in Aguirre, Wrath of God

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Do the Right Thing (1989) written and directed by Spike Lee

The director's third and finest feature-length film is a boldly stylised and invigorated cinematic statement on racial tensions and a vital snapshot of late 1980s hip-hop culture.

Do the Right Thing

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The Exorcist III (1990) directed by William Peter Blatty

This second sequel wisely ignores the John Boorman abomination and tries to craft a true horror masterpiece. While marred by too many talky stretches, it manages some memorably creepy and scary sequences.

The Exorcist III

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Matinee (1993) directed by Joe Dante and starring John Goodman

This unfairly overlooked homage to the magic of old monster movies, set during the Cuban Missile Crisis, is one of the director's best films.

The ant-headed Mant in Joe Dante's Matinee

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The Killers (1964) starring Lee Marvin and Angie Dickinson

Don Siegel's adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's short story overcomes its cheap made-for-TV production values with some hilariously hardboiled dialogue, playful violence and the classic onscreen double-act of Lee Marvin and Clu Gulager.

Lee Marvin and Clu Gulager in The Killers

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Videodrome (1983) written and directed by David Cronenberg

James Woods plays a dealer in cable TV sex and violence who meets his match in the shape of a bizarre and perverse new show. Sonja Smits and Debbie Harry also star in a bodily horror tale which is now widely regarded as being one of the director's best.

James Woods in Videodrome

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