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Lina Wertmuller masterpieces screen at Hong Kong Science Museum

A number of distinguished masterpieces by Italian director Lina Wertmuller, including "Swept Away", "Love and Anarchy" and "Seven Beauties" are being showcased at the Lecture Hall of the Hong Kong Science Museum this week (until August 22).

This will be the last chance to appreciate this director's cinematic arts.

Lina Wertmuller films are deliberately provocative, yet stylish and flamboyant. The first female to be nominated for the Best Director in the Academy Awards, Wertmuller was highly acclaimed by critics and Warner Brothers signed her to make films.

Wertmuller's films are very political, highly critical of the left wing, the right wing, fascism and even the mafia. She likes to criticise class contradictions and money politics, yet the intricate love stories and hilarious dialogue between lovers which were delivered like political arguments make her films even more interesting.

"Swept Away" (1975) is Wertmuller's masterpiece. Hollywood had remade it twice, including "Six Days, Seven Nights" starring Harrison Ford in 1998 and Madonna in the original English title in 2002. But neither could compare to the original.

Sentimentally stylish and poignantly critical of politics, Wertmuller's production became famous in the US through the film "Love and Anarchy" (1973). She was being regarded as a successor to Ingmar Bergman. Giancarlo Giannini who played Mimi in the film, was awarded the Best Actor at the Cannes International Film Festival in 1973.

Wertmuller was nominated for four Oscar awards including the Best Foreign Language Film and Best Director for the film "Seven Beauties" (1976). Warner Brothers signed her to make another four films as a result.

Other titles include Wertmuller's first production for Warner Brothers "The End of the World" (1977), sexual comedy "Softly... Softly" (1984), "Camorra" (1985) and "Summer Night" (1986) will be shown from August 20 to 22.

All films are in Italian with English subtitles. "Swept Away" and "Love and Anarchy" will also have Chinese subtitles.

Presented by the Film Programmes Office of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department and curated by Mr Law Wai-ming, the "Repertory Cinema 2004" will introduce world famous film classics to local audiences. Lina Wertmuller is the first director in focus. Works of Andrei Tarkovsky from Russia will be featured in October and Japan's Kenji Mizoguchi will be featured in December.

Tickets priced at $50 are available at URBTIX outlets. Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients. There will be a 10% discount for each purchase of six to 10 tickets and a 20% discount for each purchase of 11 or more tickets.

For programme information, call 2734 2900 or visit . Reservations can be made by phone on 2734 9009 or on the Internet at .

Ends/Tuesday, August 17, 2004
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