Dennis Hopper described his third directorial work, Out of the Blue, as a spiritual follow-up to Easy Rider, in style rather than story. All generational anguish and teenage kicks, Linda Manz is the 15-year-old self-destructive protagonist, CeBe. With a dad in jail and heroin addict mother, she replaces these figures with Elvis and the Sex Pistols, she spends her days skipping school, smoking weed and starting fights. But when her dad (played by Hopper) is released from prison, she hangs around him affectionately, rekindling a very messed up kind of father-daughter relationship. Tough, piercing and as punk as it gets.
Out of the Blue is streaming on Amazon.
Out of the Blue by Dennis Hopper, 1980
Following Lewis Hamilton’s win at the British GP last weekend, keep your foot on the pedal with a screening of Ron Howard‘s (yes, of Happy Days) 2013 work Rush, a movie documenting the highly-revved 1976 Formula One rivalry between British racer James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) and Austria’s Niki Lauda (Daniel Brühl). Frost/Nixon writer Peter Morgan penned the script and Anthony Dod Mantle (28 Days Later) is cinematographer. Capturing the risk and speed of 70s racing with brooding tension, it’s a story bigger than horsepower – well worth a watch even if you’ve not passed your driver’s theory.
Rush is streaming on Apple TV.
Rush by Ron Howard, 2013
Although Hockney’s famous painting does not feature anywhere in Luca Guadagnino’s modern re-telling of La Piscine, the tantalising reflections of light on water play a fittingly prominently role in a film centred on lust and temptation. Across two hours of scorching four-way sexual tension, Tilda Swinton, Ralph Fiennes, Matthias Schoenaerts and Dakota Johnson soak up the otherwordly beauty of Pantelleria, a remote island of idyllic beauty somewhere off the coast of Italy.
Swinton, a rock star with shot vocal chords that leave her virtually mute for the duration of the film, is brought to the point of temptation by Fiennes, her gregarious former lover whose arrival shatters all sense of tranquility. His jealousy of her new-found happiness swells into a kind of fanatical alpha-male toxicity, while his pouting teenage daughter, excellently played by Johnson, makes eyes across the pool at Schoenaerts. Marking an assured transition into English language filmmaking for Guadagnino, which no doubt paved the way for Call Me By Your Name two years later, A Bigger Splash is a beautifully languid film that will leave you hankering for a holiday and a skinny dip.
A Bigger Splash is streaming on Amazon.
A Bigger Splash by Luca Guadagnino, 2015