A woman's long history of bad luck starts to change when she puts her life on the line in this romantic drama. Adèle (Vanessa Paradis) is a 22-year-old woman whose life seems to have been a long series of miscalculations; she's never had much luck with love, life, or career, and is standing on a bridge overlooking the Seine one night, contemplating suicide, when she's approached by a man named Gabor (Daniel Auteuil). Gabor announces he's a knife-thrower who needs a new human target for his act. Would Adèle be interested? Adèle's immediate answer is to jump into the water, but after Gabor fishes her out and gets her to a hospital, she has a change of heart and the pair are soon on their way to Monaco, where Gabor gets a spot at a circus. Adèle and Gabor make a great team; he's good with knives, she's young and beautiful, and suddenly Adèle's luck starts to change. She visits a casino one night and comes home with a fortune, and even when Gabor throws blindfolded, she walks away without so much as a scratch.
AVATARIUM, the Swedish metal project whose recording lineup includes Leif Edling, founding bassist and main songwriter of Swedish doom metal legends CANDLEMASS, release its new album, "The Girl With The Raven Mask", on October 23 via Nuclear Blast. Edling states about the CD: "I think we have created something unique this time with AVATARIUM. The songs are more written to be just songs and there are some really nice moments on the record that I personally love… the straightforward title track, the beautiful 'January Sea', the riff in 'Ghostlight' and the groove in 'Run Killer Run'. The organ and the Rhodes piano are ridiculously loud in the mix at times; even Dr. Carl agrees [laughs], but i think it gives even more edge to the songs! I hope people will dig 'The Girl With The Raven Mask' as much as I do myself, and if they don't, it's their problem. A band can't deliver more than we have done here, so it is an album close to perfection! When an album is perfect… shoot me!"
The film deals with the situation of British prisoners of war during World War II who are ordered to build a bridge to accommodate the Burma-Siam railway. Their instinct is to sabotage the bridge but, under the leadership of Colonel Nicholson, they are persuaded that the bridge should be constructed as a symbol of British morale, spirit and dignity in adverse circumstances. At first, the prisoners admire Nicholson when he bravely endures torture rather than compromise his principles for the benefit of the Japanese commandant Saito.
This remarkable novel is set in a Japanese prison camp on the Burma-Siam railway, deep in the jungle. Colonel Nicholson—a man prepared to sacrifice his life but not his dignity—and his men are ordered by the Japanese to build a bridge over the River Kwai. The Colonel refuses. Through weeks of torture and solitary confinement, the British officer persists in his refusal, until the Japanese at last give way. But then, determined to show the superiority of the British, he drives his men on until a magnificent bridge awaits the passing of the first train on the new line. Meanwhile, the Special Service Branch has parachuted three men into Siam. As they watch the bridge being built and make their plans, the suspense builds up into a thrilling climax..
The late-'60s film starring Marianne Faithfull and Alain Delon has a cult reputation, if only because it's one of Faithfull's few film appearances (and has rarely been seen, especially in the U.S.). The soundtrack has enough of a groovy late-'60s period feel to merit a cult reputation of its own, with its bordering-on-bizarre mix of solid '60s Hammond organ grooves, soothing quasi-classical interludes, lush '60s Europop along the lines of the theme from A Man and a Woman, and brief flashes of psychedelia and avant-gardisms. (Faithfull fans be cautioned: Marianne does not sing on the soundtrack at all.) The recurring motifs are quite insinuating, and treated with a number of imaginative arrangements, making this a pretty interesting find for fans of '60s Euro easy listening/pop hybrids, even if they're not interested in having a souvenir of the film. The CD reissue does the job right by adding good liner notes and three bonus cuts by vocalists Mireille Mathieu and Cleo Laine, who recorded these tracks after Les Reed added lyrics to three instrumental pieces from the film.