Movies – L

L-Shaped Room, The (1962)

A French girl (Leslie Caron), expecting an illegitimate baby, comes to live in a seedy London boarding house, and gets involved with Toby (Tom Bell), the man downstairs - which ends unhappily for both. Jane Fosset Leslie Caron Doris Avis Bunnage Sonia Pat Phoenix Jane II Verity Edmett Toby Tom Bell Mavis Cicely Courtneidge Dr(...)

L.A. Confidential (1997)

This sparkling adaptation of James Ellroy’s novel touches on countless pieces of old Tinseltown lore: the Robert Mitchum marijuana bust, a supposed brothel of Veronica Lake lookalikes, and a notorious level of LAPD collusion with studio bosses and mobsters. It’s played with perfect understatement by Guy Pearce, Russell Crowe and Kim Basinger. Looking to avoid(...)

La Bamba (1987)

Very traditional Hollywood biopic covering the rise to fame of Ritchie Valens, the Mexican-born rock star whose eight months of success were cut short when he took a fateful plane ride with Buddy Holly in 1959. La Bamba chronicles Ritchie's meteoric rise from a life of poverty among California's Mexican fruit pickers to a privileged seat(...)

La Dolce Vita (1959)

La Dolce Vita ("The Sweet Life") is a study of crippling boredom, leading to artistic paralysis and loose sexual morals, played out against the decadence of post-war Roman cafe society. Federico Fellini's imagination runs riot with a series of striking, brilliantly photographed images as his central character, a journalist played by Marcello Mastroianni, lives out 24(...)

La Strada (1954)

La Strada is Frederico Fellini's fourth film, and the one that made his international reputation. Starring Anthony Quinn as Zampano the Strongman and the director's wife, Giulietta Masina, as the waif Gelsomina, it is a story of love and jealousy set in the circus, a milieu to which Fellini returns time and again. Zampano does a(...)

Labyrinth (1986)

When a teenage girl (Jennifer Connelly) discovers her little baby brother has been kidnapped by David Bowie (er . . . by the Goblin King who is played by David Bowie that is), she enters a secret labyrinthine world of mazes, magic and . . . well . . . Muppets. Masterminded by Muppeteer Jim(...)

Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains (1982)

Filmed in 1981, released in 1982, but almost impossible to see ever since, Ladies and Gentlemen, The Fabulous Stains caught the tail-end of the punk boom with an unusual degree of gritty authenticity. A cult favourite (of course), it even co-stars Clash bassist Paul Simonon alongside Sex Pistols Steve Jones and Paul Cook as The Looters, a foul-mouthed Britpunk band, fronted(...)

Lady and The Tramp (1955)

Walt Disney's first full-length cartoon in Cinemascope is a triumph for all ages. The story of a romance between a dainty, well-bred cocker spaniel named Lady and a mutt named Tramp whom she meets during a brave clash with the outside world, it's one of Disney's most appealing, imaginatively illustrated cartoon classics, and honey-dripping Peggy(...)

Lady Chatterley’s Lover (1981)

Written in 1928, D H Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover had only been available, unexpurgated, in Britain since Penguin Books' famous 1960 obscenity trial at the Old Bailey. But it wasn't until 1981 that somebody had the bright idea to film an English language version on home turf.

Ladyhawke (1985)

Seeing this movie in the 1980s as a young man was to fall in love with Michelle Pfeiffer. And just as she is still one of the great screen beauties, Ladyhawke holds up well with age. The Medieval tale of two lovers cursed to be apart as the result of a spell cast by the evil Bishop(...)

Ladykillers, The (1955)

A wonderful Ealing comedy with a great performance by British actress Katie Johnson, then well into her seventies, who plays Louisa Wilberforce - an old lady whose innocence is more than a match for a ruthless gang of criminals. She lives in a tumbledown Victorian house near St Pancras Station and takes in as a lodger(...)

Lair Of The White Worm, The (1988)

Nude nuns, lesbian catfights and snake-cult rituals; what else could this be but a Ken Russell fantasy sextravaganza? In the Peak District, a reptile skull is found in the grounds of a building looked after by two sisters whose parents have disappeared in mysterious circumstances. The unearthing of the skull, which archaeologist Angus Flint believes(...)

Land That Time Forgot, The (1975)

A British supply ship is sunk by a German submarine in 1916. The survivors are taken prisoner by the captain but when the submarine runs out of fuel the party has to land on an uncharted island in the Antarctic, where they discover, to their horror, dangerous prehistoric creatures. This is the first, and worst, of(...)

Landlord, The (1970)

An upwardly mobile businessman buys a run-down apartment block, intending to demolish it and redevelop the site. But news of the tenants' predicaments causes him to have a change of heart. Former editor Hal Ashby - an Oscar winner for In the Heat of the Night (1967) - made a terrific debut as director with this comedy(...)

Last Action Hero (1993)

An Arnold Schwarzenegger backlash had been on the cards for some time and when this extravaganza was released the knives were well and truly out. It was actually all a little unfair, because this is a smart, funny blockbuster that gave director John McTiernan the opportunity to send up not only Schwarzenegger's heroic image, but(...)

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