In my January 7 piece on the ten best movies of 1999, I incorrectly implied that Divorce Iranian Style first played locally at the Film Center. In fact it surfaced originally at the 1998 Chicago International Film Festival, where, festival programmer Jim Healy informs me, it tied for best documentary. Apologies to the festival for the error. Since it also had an extended run at the Film Center in early 1999, it still qualifies for my list.
Luis Galvao Teles’s film about five middle-aged Lisbon friends is Portuguese-made with French dialogue, making it in theory the worst kind of Europudding. But in practice it’s a stirring vehicle for five talented actressesCarmen Maura, Miou-Miou, Paris opera star Guesch Patti, Marisa Berenson, and Marthe Keller. For my taste, this is juicier and more enjoyable as a movie about aging than All About My Mother, and the social milieu it encompasses is considerably wider: Maura plays a TV news journalist, Miou-Miou a literature professor, Patti an actress and singer, Keller a caterer, and Berenson the owner of a chic beauty salon where the others hang out. Collectively they conjure up a substantial worldand incidentally act up a storm. (JR)