Film review: Concussion | Pantani | A Touch Of Sin

Marco Pantani the focus of the film Pantani: The Accidental Death of a Cyclist. Picture: Getty
Marco Pantani the focus of the film Pantani: The Accidental Death of a Cyclist. Picture: Getty
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Pantani: The Accidental Death Of A Cyclist (15)

****

As Yorkshire gears up to host the Tour de France this summer, Battle Of The Sexes filmmaker James Erskine recalls Italian cyclist Marco Pantani (below), who died of drug abuse ten years ago aged 34. In 1998 he won both the Tour and the Giro d’Italia, the last cyclist to do so. Bradley Wiggins, Evgeni Berzin and close friends build up an intriguing portrait of a man exposed as a drug cheat, yet who still commands a reverence that disgraced Lance Armstrong would give his eye teeth for.

Selected release: Edinburgh Filmhouse on 16 May, Glasgow Film Theatre, dates tbc

Concussion (15)

**

A lesbian housewife is hit on the head, and turns into a Sapphic version of Catherine Deneuve in Belle De Jour in Stacie Passon’s first feature film. Abby (Robin Weigert) is an affluent suburban mum, neglected by her generically cold lawyer wife (Julie Fain Lawrence) and her two kids. Concussion is well acted, but it seems remarkably easy to set yourself up as a fortysomething high-priced escort in a profession curiously low on danger and unpleasant clients. Audiences cruising for tasteful kinks should be aware that the encounters are underwhelming and the camera gets most of its kicks from photographing immaculately styled houses and fashions. Tepid and contrived, this is really House & Garden porn.

Selected release: Cineworld Glasgow Renfield

A Touch Of Sin (15)

****

Four stories of murder, desperation and revenge in modern China are brought together as a fierce humanist polemic by Jia Zhangke. Better known for more contemplative, less bloody works such as Still Life and Unknown Pleasures, this is what Pulp Fiction might have looked like if Bill Douglas had got hold of it. If that sounds like a good thing to you, then do go see.

Selected release: Glasgow Film Theatre, 16-22 May