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RYAN’S DAUGHTER
1970, Warner Bros., 187 min, UK, Dir: David Lean

Initially planned as a return to the small-scale storytelling of David Lean’s BRIEF ENCOUNTER days, RYAN’S DAUGHTER instead became an epic contest between the director and the Irish landscape, as he attempted to tell the tragic story of a married Irish woman (played by Sarah Miles, wife of the film’s screenwriter, Robert Bolt) and her affair with a shell-shocked British soldier (Christopher Jones). A flawed gem, the film boasts some great performances (John Mills, who won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar, and Leo McKern) and some still-underrated ones (Robert Mitchum, as a meek schoolteacher). Freddie Young’s astonishing cinematography ranks with his best work on LAWRENCE OF ARABIA and DOCTOR ZHIVAGO.


THE LOCKET
1946, Warner Bros., 85 min, USA, Dir: John Brahm

On his wedding day, a groom (Brian Aherne) is told stunning tales regarding the troubled past of his bride-to-be (Laraine Day), including her destructive affair with a tortured artist (Robert Mitchum). This dazzling and dizzying psychodrama uses a web of interlocking flashbacks to show how a woman’s childhood obsession with a prized locket dictates the course of her life.


DEAD MAN
1995, Miramax, 121 min, USA, Dir: Jim Jarmusch

Accountant William Blake (Johnny Depp) is expelled from a frontier town with a bullet lodged in his chest and a trio of bounty hunters at his heels. Fortunately, he is befriended by Nobody (Gary Farmer), a Native American who escorts him to the Pacific coast, where his destiny lies. Described by director Jim Jarmusch as a “psychedelic Western,” this haunting black-and-white vision features a soundtrack by Neil Young and a memorable supporting cast including Gabriel Byrne, Iggy Pop and, in his final film, Robert Mitchum. “One of the very best movies of the 1990s.” - A. O. Scott, The New York Times


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