News, music, movies & restaurants from the editors of the Silicon Valley's #1 weekly newspaper.
Serving San Jose, Palo Alto, Los Gatos, Campbell, Sunnyvale, Mountain View, Fremont & nearby cities.


home | metro silicon valley index | movies | current reviews | film review

Madagascar Skin

One disc; Water Bearer Films; $29.95

Newly released on DVD, this 1995 feature is a droll and surreal story of a marked man with a spectacular port-wine birthmark—"stain" isn't the word; it's more as if someone had doused him with an entire bottle of Sandeman's. Rejected at the gay discos, lonely Harry (John Hannah) flees to a remote coast to be seen no more by man. Beachcombing after a storm, Harry finds some human flotsam: Flint (the affable but devilish Bernard Hill, best known as the poisoned King Theoden in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers). He is a sort of tattooed merman, found buried up to his neck in the sand. Chris Newby's tale of the courtship could have used a little more narrative tension, but it's a very peculiar love story, one that has enough weight to keep from evaporating. Newby, whose handsome, strange Anchoress played at the 1994 Cinequest, here demonstrates a sensibility you'd love to see more of.(Richard von Busack)

Send a letter to the editor about this story.

Movie Finder

Silicon Valley | Santa Cruz County | Sonoma / Marin / Napa

New and upcoming film releases.

Browse all movie reviews.