PATTY HEARST
1988, Park Circus/MGM, 108 min, UK/USA, Dir: Paul Schrader

Patricia Hearst was a 19-year-old newspaper fortune heiress when she was kidnapped by left-wing terrorists in 1974; in the months that followed, she transformed from frightened hostage to machine-gun toting revolutionary. Based on Hearst’s book, this stylish and riveting drama features Natasha Richardson in the title role and Ving Rhames, William Forsythe and Frances Fisher as her Symbionese Liberation Army cohorts.


PULP FICTION
1994, Park Circus/Miramax, 153 min, USA, Dir: Quentin Tarantino

Quentin Tarantino’s dazzling, nitro-fueled homage to 1930s crime fiction, Elvis Presley flicks, Los Angeles diners, Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Pierre Melville and much more was easily the most audacious and exciting American film of the 1990s. The movie’s brilliant, against-type casting includes John Travolta (in a career-reviving performance), Samuel L. Jackson, Uma Thurman, Bruce Willis, Harvey Keitel, Eric Stolz, Maria de Medeiros, Tim Roth, Amanda Plummer, Christopher Walken and Ving Rhames. Nominated for seven Oscars and winner for Best Screenplay. Winner of LAFCA Awards for Best Picture, Actor (Travolta) and Screenplay (Tarantino and Roger Avary).


BRINGING OUT THE DEAD
1999, Paramount, 121 min, USA, Dir: Martin Scorsese

TAXI DRIVER director Martin Scorsese and writer Paul Schrader return to the gritty streets of Manhattan - in an ambulance. This time Nicolas Cage (in one of his best performances) takes the wheel as burnt-out paramedic Frank Pierce, bedeviled by a heroin epidemic that’s gripped the city and haunted by the patients he couldn’t save. His partners on the graveyard shift deal with the chaos of the job in varying ways: Ving Rhames appeals to God, while the brutal Tom Sizemore puts his trust in a baseball bat. An underrated meditation on how tenuous the ties to life and to sanity can become.


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