THE MICHIGAN DAILY
Thursday, Apri 1 10, 1969
THE MICHIGAN DAILY Thursday, April 10, 1969
By GORMAN BEAUCHAMP
The Cinema Guild has em-
barked on a program of retro-
spective showings of experi-
mental film makers. The Ro-
bert Nelson showing Tuesday
night, the first of the series,
seemed to me to'succeed admir-
ably in achieving what I take
to be its goal: the presentation
of a sizable body of a man's
work which allows the viewer to
comprehend something of the
development, focus and prob-
lems of the "underground" film
maker. Nelson's appearance at
this showing was an extra bonus
and his performance during a
question and answer period was
in its own way; as interesting
as the films.
Nelson's best known and per-
haps best film is Oh Dein Wa-
termelons (1965), a wildly sur-
realistic account of all the un-
imaginable things that can be
done to a watermelon and that-
a watermelon can do back. It
can be smashed in dozens of
crazy ways, it can be made love
to, it can be gutted, it can chase
people up a flight of stairs (if
one holds his camera upside
down, as Nelson did), and it can
even be eaten. Watermelons is
a funny, imaginative unpreten-
tious film that does not suffer,
as do some of the others, from a
lack of intellectual or imagina-
Nelson's longest film, The
Great Blondino seems to me far
less successful; in fact, it's bor-
ing. In response to a question
about how he works, Nelson re-
plied that he just lets things
happen, but that he tries to in-
fluence what happens. This Is
ambiguous enough to allow us
Hopwood winners announced
tp hope that he is not a real de-
votee of the "just let things
happen" pose, which is so pop-
ular at present with the artis-
All art is of course selection-
letting this' thing just happen
rather 'than letting that thing
just happen, for example. Nei-.
See Page 7
son did say, however, that he
used almost every foot of film
he shot for Blondino: Economi-
cally wise perhaps, artistically a
mistake. Somee things that just
happen, even some things that
one films just happening, are
also just not interesting.
See LOOKING. Page 7
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TONIGHT and FRIDAY
at 6:48 and 9 00
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The 39th Avery and Jule
Hopwood awards in creative
writing were announced last
night in a special program at
Awards totaling $19,000 were
given to- 24 winners, three of'
whom were awarded two prizes
each. The money comes from an
endowment fund bequeathed by
Avery Hopwood, and prizes vary
in amount according to the
quality of the work.
Following an address by novel-
ist Peter De Vries, Prof. Robert
F. Haugh, chairman of the Hop-
wood Committee, annbunced
this year's winners.
William M. Hubert, Grad, was
winner of the largest award, a
$2,000 prize in major fiction for
"The One/Word," a novel.
Two awards each were won
by Frank E. Beaver, Grad, Bar-
bara Van Noord Bosma, Grad,
and Lawrence Kasden,,'70.
De Vries, author of The Cat's
Pajamas and Witches Milk,
opened the program with a con-
sistently witty 50 minute ad-
dress which touched on the
problems of having "a cow come
to analyze milk;" the gap be-
tweeh 4cience and art; the trou-
,ble with TV; should we be on
the moon, ("Yes!"), and how the
author bridged the generation
gap by yelling "son of a bitch"
accompanied by a "good swift
kick" to the posterior of a
Tongue - in -cheek' De Vries
maintained that the gap be-
tween the scientific and the
artistic could be lessened since
scientific termiriology can be
used "for understanding what
the artist is doing."
James Joyce, for example, in
his stream-of-consciousness pas-
sages is a prime example of the
"quantum theory of physics"
which says that "energy is in
individual packets," De Vries
In addition he claimed with'a
grin that the modern humorist
may be the "psychic counter-
part toethe loss ofunstable car-
bon isotopes in physics."
Anticipating the a m u's e d
groans which followed these
scientific literary formulas, De
Vries told the audience his ex-
amples were "like Bartok's
music-not as bad as it sounds."
De Vries said the purpose of
fiction, "as Joseph Conrad said,
is to make the reader see." He
maintained that "TV is not
visual enough." "It can't make
us see the character in Ma,
Beerbohm who dresses bohemian
in intension, but clerical in ef,
"These type of pictures re-
quire transmission from one
mind to the other via the print-
ed page," De Vries maintained.
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HOpWOod eontes winners,
Fiction William M. Hubert, Grad, $2,000; Lawrence Aufderheide,
Grad, $1,000; Cecilia S. Dreyfuss, Grad, $750; Jeffrey Simp-
son, Grad, $600.
Fiction, short story division: William Brashler, '69, $1,000; Bar-
bara Van Noord Bosma,4 Grad, ,$750; John L. Tottenham,
Drama: Frank Ek Beaver, Grad, $750; Carolyn Delevitt, '69, $750.
Essay: Wayne Allen Jones, Grad, $1,000; Frank E. Beaver, $§00;
James V. Roelofs, '69, $500; Edward B. Germain, Grad, $500.
Poetry: Barbara Van Noord Bosma, $1,000.
Fiction: Lawrence Kasdan, '70, $700; Kathy Edelman, '70N, $500;
Kalien Liston, '70, $500; Peter C. Anderson, '71, $500.
Drama: Lawrence Kasdan, $600; Susan J. Shaw, '72, $500; Peter
F. Grif fith, '69, $400.
Essay: Steven P. Unger, '69, $750; Jane H. Hawes, '69, $600;
William W. Scott, '71Ed, $600; Mary G. Wiedenbeck, '69,
Poetry: Martin B. Lahr, '72, $500; Gail Lenhoff, '70, $500.
THURS. and FRI.
dir. ALAIN RESNAIS
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"A whiff of satanical sulphur"
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Directed by John Houseman
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