DRIVE, HE SAID
1971, Sony Repertory, 90 min, USA, Dir: Jack Nicholson

Jack Nicholson’s first trip behind the camera as director is a subtle character study about basketball, college and Vietnam. It stands as one of the best sports-related movies ever made and captures the true feeling of the late ’60s/early ’70s college experience. William Tepper is a star basketball player with a drug-addled best friend (Michael Margotta) who is dodging the draft and a faculty-wife girlfriend (Karen Black) bent on giving him the boot. Bruce Dern's performance as the snide, take-no-prisoners coach is masterfully hard-nosed. With Robert Towne and Henry Jaglom in prime supporting roles, and cinematography by Bill Butler. "Nicholson deftly illustrates the background cynicism of big-time sports against the more obvious cynicism of college life." – Variety.


ZODIAC
2007, Paramount, 157 min, USA, Dir: David Fincher

Based on the true story of the serial killer who terrorized San Francisco in the late 1960s, this engrossing mystery stars Jake Gyllenhaal as a San Francisco Chronicle cartoonist who becomes obsessed with the manhunt; Mark Ruffalo and Robert Downey Jr. are the police inspector and reporter, respectively, on the same mission. With a meticulous attention to detail (and plenty of foreboding atmosphere courtesy of Harris Savides’ cinematography), this may be the last word on a case that remains officially unsolved.


RETURN TO OZ
1985, Disney, 113 min, USA, Dir: Walter Murch

Legendary film editor and sound designer Walter Murch directs this pleasantly subtle and delightfully bizarre sequel to THE WIZARD OF OZ. After a disturbing stint in a mental hospital, a cherubic Dorothy (Fairuza Balk) gets washed away to Oz, only to find it a changed place. Menacing Wheelers swivel around a broke-down Emerald City, vain witch Mombi covets her walk-in chamber of human heads, and a nefarious Nome King has wreaked terror on the land. With the help of new friends (the adorable Tik Tok and hapless, affable Jack Pumpkinhead), Dorothy sets out once again to save Oz from seemingly insurmountable villains.


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