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The Killing of John Lennon - ALLAN HUNTER - SCOTLAND ON SUNDAY

13th Aug. 2006, ALLAN HUNTER - SCOTLAND ON SUNDAY

Kudos comes from taking risks

ALLAN HUNTER

ANDREW PIDDINGTON also reveals a striking talent with his direction of The Killing Of John Lennon. There may be an instant, knee-jerk resistance to a film about Mark David Chapman but this is neither sensationalistic nor lurid. It offers a measured, impressionistic portrait of a killer that invites us to enter the mind of a man who emerges as something of a lost soul. The most obvious comparison is with Taxi Driver and Chapman feels an affinity with the alienation of Robert De Niro's Travis Bickle.

The film has a great cinematic sweep as it depicts the months leading Chapman from Hawaii to his obsessive pursuit of Lennon and his fatal encounter outside the Dakota Building in December 1980. The tragedy of Lennon's death is not diminished by the film but it provides greater understanding of how a troubled mind can transform an idol into an object of irrational hatred. Jonas Ball offers a subtle, well-rounded impersonation of Chapman in one of the Edinburgh discoveries that deserves wider exposure.

 

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