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RUSHMORE

SYNOPSIS: Max Fischer (Jason Schwartzman) is a tenth-grade student at Rushmore Academy. This sublime operator, this con man in a blue blazer, is also on sudden-death probation because of his abysmal academic record. Max is just too busy to study. He's in the business of starting clubs and staging plays. He is also in love with the new first-grade teacher, Miss Cross (Olivia Williams). Always looking for a new crowning glory, 15-year-old Max decides to build an aquarium at the school in honour of Miss Cross. For financing, he goes to Mr. Blume (Bill Murray), the shy major benefactor of the school, who agrees to provide seed money for the project and then promptly falls in love with Miss Cross himself.

"Whoever said American mainstream cinema has long suffocated in a quagmire of dismal unoriginality, hasn't seen Rushmore. It's rare to find a film of such sublime perfection, a work of utterly brazen audacity, wit and intelligence. This is a film of character that comes alive with a thud and never lets go. Director and co-writer Wes Anderson, who made the superb (but rarely seen) Bottle Rocket, has proven himself a filmmaker of extraordinary vision. Apart from creating a collage of intricate, original characters, his sense of direction is remarkable, including an eye for detail and an ear for sharp dialogue. Rushmore is a film about us, our determination to succeed, our willingness to be accepted. It's a film about class and social mores, the bursting forth of the creative spirit and our quest for individuality. Here is a film that is quirky, but unpretentiously so, a film that is darkly comic, that is moving and honest, yet has moments of cartoonish absurdity. It's beautifully crafted and flawlessly written, and has astonishing performances. As the film's juvenile antihero, Jason Schwartzman is a true revelation, a young actor who delivers an exquisite performance that conveys a breathtaking range of emotional depth. Bill Murray has found an intricate, sometimes tragicomic character that he can sink his teeth into, and sink them he does. This is Murray at his best, a subtle, funny and even heartbreaking characterisation; Olivia Williams, so under-utilised in The Postman, is radiant in the role of the poor teacher caught in the middle of an unusual friendship. Even the smallest performances shine through. With a resonant musical score and the beautiful cinematography, Rushmore is an extraordinary work of art, an original and unforgettable film to be savoured."
Paul Fischer

"Rushmore is a story about dreams. Its central character, the student con-artist Max Fischer (Jason Schwartzman, wonderful in his film debut) is limited only by his grand ideas, as he creates the reality he desires. Satirical, humorous, poignant and totally original, Rushmore impresses by its wit and concept, rather than its emotional sensitivities. The notion of role reversal is clever and well executed, and the central character is intensely engaging, despite the fact that he is actually a bit of a monster, albeit a likeable one. Bill Murray's delivery is deadpan and effective. His is a touching character and one that we empathise with immediately. It's comic, it's different, and has a certain air of sweet sincerity that drives it throughout. Olivia Williams captures a mood that enhances, while the toe tapping mix of contempo tunes keeps the pace moving. Idealistic, fresh and entertaining, Rushmore is unpredictable fun in a world where roles are reversed and are privy to watch the result."
Louise Keller

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CRITICAL COUNT
Favourable: 2
Unfavourable: 0
Mixed: 0

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TRAILER

SOFCOM MOVIE TIMES

RUSHMORE (M15+)
(US)

CAST: Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, Olivia Williams, Brian Cox, Seymour Cassel, Mason Gamble, Sara Tanaka

DIRECTOR: Wes Anderson

PRODUCER: Barry Mendel, Paul Schiff

SCRIPT: Wes Anderson

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Robert Yeoman

EDITOR: David Moritz

MUSIC: Mark Mothersbaugh

PRODUCTION DESIGN: David Wasco

RUNNING TIME: 93 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Buena Vista

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: February 25, 1999

VIDEO DISTRIBUTOR: Buena Vista

VIDEO RELEASE: October 1, 1999

VIDEO RELEASE: September 1, 1999

VIDEO DISTRIBUTOR: Buena Vista







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