Cinema: X Marks the Top

Two fine new films get the adults-only label

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True to its theme of emotional cannibalism in a dead-end society, The Cook has plenty of eating and excreting. Its characters, sad creatures swathed in Jean-Paul Gaultier couture, gorge on their own swollen hunger for sex, control, revenge. Similarly, Greenaway -- inspired by Jacobean revenge plays and Dutch masters' paintings -- stuffs the viewer with ripe images and raw language. He tests your appetite for intelligent sensation. For many it may be a daunting test, but it is worth taking. Elegant and rancid, this movie rates an X as in excellent.

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