8:00 PM, 7th October, 2005
Crash is the directorial debut of Paul Haggis, a screenwriter best known for Million Dollar Baby. Set in an unusually chilly Los Angeles winter over a 24 hour period, it comprises vignettes about fear, isolation, prejudice and rage. Black LAPD detective Graham (Cheadle) explains it all: "We're always behind metal and glass-It's the sense of touch. I think we miss that touch so much that we crash into each other just so we can feel something." As unlikely accidents and coincidences drive people from rival classes and races together, victims of crime lash out at victims of prejudice, while the well-intentioned are led by fear to murder.
The cast includes Matt Dillon, Ryan Phillipe, Brendan Fraser, Sandra Bullock, Terrence Dashon Howard, Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges and Thandie Newton.
Essentially Haggis's reaction to having been robbed in real life, Crash is an indictment of racism from a bland and conventional standpoint, which leaves the director free to indulge his own unexamined, risible, views about the poor, who are shown as selfless drudges, predatory crims or lazy junkies. Often funny, Crash is bound to provoke comment about the problems of a troubled city that has dominated the world's imagination like no other.
10:00 PM, 7th October, 2005
Dog Day Afternoon is a classic of the seventies. It stars a young Al Pacino, with big hair, less wrinkles, but the same intensity. He plays Sonny, who, along with his friend Sal (Cazale) attempts to rob a bank in Brooklyn. This should have been simple, but it quickly escalates into a hostage situation with hundreds of police and a cheering crowd outside the bank. They break all the rules of robbery - don't hang around, don't trust the police, don't engage with the hostages and don't let them play with your weapons. Based on a true story, this is a dark and humorous film, but ultimately tragic as you are drawn into Sonny's life in the context of the robbery. Excellent performances all round and enhanced by the lack of music, this film balances comedy with tension and is definitely something you should see. Especially if you're planning a bank robbery anytime soon-