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January 30, 1975 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1975-01-30

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Thursday, lar uary'30, 1975

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page F-ve

cap4 f'icks
Anderson: Filmmaker
and political activist
By JAMES VALK ^ -
'J'HE CONCEPT OF political commitment via the motion picture
is one that has failed perhaps as many times as it has been
attempted. Costa-Gravas' films one-sidedly make their point, but
demand no philosophic indulgence for their cause. Godard has
distorted the medium in numerous cinematic extensions of the
revolution, but has failed in relating to his audience. And while
Gillo Pontecorvo has captured the true spirit of a movement on
film, he has, like the others, failed to elaborate his conviction;
he has failed to employ his film as a vehicle for catalytic action.
With the revolutionary '60s heading into a tailspin, director
Lindsay Anderson, working from David Sherwin's screenplay, has
created If . , . a film of revolutionary ideology that offers a
potential for genuine concern. But while Anderson's sympathies
remain with the dissidents, his cinematic achievement results
in something just shy of total devotion.
If . . . is a tale of life at an English boarding school
illustrated from the vantage point of three young students
structured under pompous and irresponsible authoritarianism.
The film develops a hard line between freedom of youth and the
regimentation of existing structures, an allegory that can be
perceived far beyond the limits of the school itself.
W ORKING WITHIN his premise, Anderson creates a sustained
prevalence of deprivating banality, forcing the tolerance of
his trio to their inevitable limits. His calculated vision of mental
and physical sadism is disturbingly acute: the effective dichotomy
within the students, as created by the snibbling headmasters
through dispersion of authority, sets up a division of cohesiveness,
alienating the now discontent trio from the other youths.
As the film proceeds, the threesome becomes an entity
completely detached from the other students in the school. Since
the trio abhors the rigid conformity imposed by the authoritarian
school environment, they no longer possess anything in common
with their peers-who, of course, continue to pay lip service to
the time-honored notion of educational hierarchy.
The trio's collective goals are those of the immediate few-
rebellion against the existing authorities and those who succumb
to them, thus apathetically allowing continuence of their tra-
ditionally indulgent rule.
EMPLOYING THE ultimate in surreal anarchism, Anderson
allows his characters the pinnacle of outright indignation.
Equipped with machine guns on the rooftop of the school, the
newly founded rebels mercilessly open fire, killing virtually
anyone within range.
As dynamic as the film is, it is hardly flawless. Anderson
seems sporadically fascinated with occasional ventures into
divergencies: the surrealistic sexual innuendo concerning the
headmaster's wife and the cafe waitress, the incoherent changes
from color to black and white, and the interjected homosexual
motifs 411 remain unanswered, serving as mere clouds that
distort rather than enhance.
Anderson's film, within its context, fights to survive. Just
as one disturbingly precise vision becomes all-encompassing, our
temporary involvement is snapped by the cinematic faults that
preclude the much needed attentiveness. In the end, Anderson's
fantasy vs. reality approach does not provide the necessary
mechanism for arousal.
To attribute the overall ineffectiveness of the film to Ander-
son's inability to penetrate his audience would be presumptuous,
as it would delete perhaps the most influential variable to be
considered: the medium itself.
WOKING WITHIN the very structure of the motion picture,
the film director finds himself faced with a cinematic
dilemma: presenting his material as straight documentary or as
some deviation thereof. Unfortunately, the end result generally
surfaces as more of a facade of the reality or the opinion than
of a legitimate presentation of the ideology.
PATRICIA CARPENTER
Dept of Pscholov
CARNEGE MELLON UNIVERSITY
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
"What Eye Fixations Tell Us
About Mental Processes"
JANUARY 30
MENTAL HEALTH RESEARCH INSTITUTE
SEMINAR SERIES
TEA: 3:5 p.m.. 2059 MHRI
SEMINAR: 3:45 p.m. 1057 MHRI
theannarbr flmcooperative
PRESENTS
TTORIO DE SICA'S
THE GARDEN

OF THE
FINZI-CONTINIS
with DOMINIQUE SANDA
TODAY, THURS., JAN. 30
7:00 & 9:30
Aud. A, Angell Hall
$1.25
Get our full winter schedule NOW! At:
DAVID'S BOOKS COMMUNITY NEWSCENTER
CENTICORE LSA INFO DESK
AUD. A, ANGELL HALL

'Gargoyle'
By GEORGE LOBSENZ Feb. issues do
Amidst little fanfare and the issue to pi
even less public recognition, "Thetheme o
Gargoyle, the University humor"Birth of A
magazine, has come out with cent nation b
its winter edition. Released two than a secess
Sdays ago, the newest Gargoyle of Michigan.
has yet to provoke a noticeable tides remain
reaction from any segment of work of thist
the University community. some cartoon
{ Always one of the more ob- eorec
scure publications on campus, Before com
Gargoyle has reached new lows theme - orie
in popularity this year, raising ever, we are
,.\. ' . doubts about its future. of satire-mag
The dire situation of the mag- letters page
azine is made embarrassingly j comment. Th
clear by the do-or-die nature of stuck in myz
this most recent edition. Should 'being perhaps
it fail to catch on, this latest ' cessful stab
Gargoyle may very well dou- anywhere in
ble as the last one. On the adjoin
Unfortunately, the 1975 Jan.; torial, written
f'erld C.Vs

evokves

few

lwo
aug s

oesn't seem to be
in one's hopes on.
of the magazine is
Nation", the nas-
being none other
sionist University
Most of the ar-
within the frame-
theme, with only,
series and filler'
k the pattern.
ing to the major
nted pieces how-
treated to a pair
standards - The
and an editorial
he letters section
memooy only for
the most unsuc-
at humor madeI
the 42 page issue.
ing page, the edi-
by head Gargoyle
anninga, was ap-
lippant but little
not mortified) by
sampling of the
argoyle literary
avely charge for-
meat-and-potatoes
magazine.

Largest among the thematic
articles is a bogus newspaper
dubbed The Michigan Gargoyle,
having a format that seemed
vaguely reminiscent of a local
newspaper. Naturally, the pap-
er headlines the secession of the
University from the state of
Michigan and the U. S. Accom-
panying this big story is a va-
riety of related "news flashes"
which only occasionally man-
age a modicum of mirthfulness.
With rare exceptions, this piece
was no more than faintly amus-
ing.
The next major rib-tickler
was a mock travel guide, de-
signed for the hordes of tour-
ists sure to flock to the newlv
independent nation. Here, Gar-
goyle takes it upon itself to aim
some pot-shots at a variety ofj
tired targets. The delightful
Ann Arbor climate, the scrump-E
tious dorm food, the cozy ac-
commodations; all the old bones
are picked over once again.I
Not a particularly imaginative
feature, nor one developed to
its full potential.
About the only substantial ar-

ticle which elicited more than
a few luke-warm giggles was
"T.V.God", the sole television
time-table in existence contain-
ing the listing of four major
networks: CBS, NBC, ABC
and GBN, the Gargoyle Broad-
casting Network. Though most
of the humor is not exactly
classy stuff, it has an ingen-
iously perverted twist to it
which gives it some vitality.
Rounding out the magazine
are three more features and
three cartoon strips. These
last three articles maintained
a general level of mediocrity
with only "T.F. of the Year"
attaining some fairly inspired
moments.
Of the comic strips, only J.
Nanninga's Doonesbury-ish "U.
of M.'s National Hero" proved
in the least bit provocative.
In conclusion, one might be
tempted to say the tiresomely
profane and limited humor of

Gargoyle is just not worth the
fifty cent price.
a But one's sense of humor is
a highly subjective area. What
may tiresome to one person
may be positively hysterical to
another. Still the only true cri-
terion of a humor magazine is
that it make the reader laugh,
and this particular reader did
very little.
Have a flair for
artistic writinq?
If you areinterest-
ed in reviewing
poetrytand music
or writing feature
stories a b o u t the
drama, dances film
arts: Contact Arts
Editor, c/o The
Michigan Daily.

Mazu rsy explor es
problems of ol(1 age

Gerai . Ni
propriately fl
else.
Fortified (if
this random
"unique" G
style, we bra
ward to the
portion of the

By BRUCE RUSSELL
14 Reuter
The Hollywood director who
explored the patterns of chang-
ing sexual mores in the United
States in two successful come-
dies has now turned his atten-
tion to the problems of this
country's aged.
Director Paul. Mazursky has
filmed the sexual misadven-
iires of a would-be "swinging",
foursome in Bob and Carol and
Ted and Alice and of a three-:
some in Blume in Love.
In chronicling the tragedy of
the aged in Harry and Tonto,
Mazursky says he sees both
middle-aged sexual freedom
and the abandonment of the
aged as part of a much wider
problem - the breakup of the
family structure.
"Up until the Second World
War, the family unit was fairly
strong," he says. "But after the
war, old people were made ob-}
solete figures. The youth cult
took over.
"Who has time to worry
about old people? The only
question was - What do we do'
with them? Where do we farm
them out?"
Keeping within the comedy
vein which he used in filming
controversial sexual themes,
Mazursky has related the re-
tirement odyssey of an old man
whose children are too mired'

in their own problems to help
or house him.
Thrown off buses and planes
because he insists on travelling
with his ginger cat Tonto, he
buys an old car and sets off
across the country, meeting
hippies, Jesus children, and the
nation's poor.
Eventually he settles in a
shabby lodging house on the
beach in California. Even his
beloved cat dies. But he has
learned to reduce his expec-
tations of life and to be rea-
sonably contented and busy in
retirement.
The 72-year-old Harry of the
film is played by veteran New
York stage actor Art Carney,
employing almost no make-up.
"The way I see it the whole
problem of retirement is inva-
lid," Mazursky says. "It's a
bone crusher. It doesn't work.
People should never be retired
while physically they are able
to function. There shoild be a
way that they are still a via-
ble part of life."
The retirement home situa-
tion he thinks a national trag-
edy. "They're like hospitals for
the mentally retarded. They're
the worst."
Mazurskv says he had a
great deal of trouble getting
the money needed to make the
film.

& -MEDIATRICS
PRESENTS
MARLON BRAN DO
IN
The Wil6d One
THURS., JAN. 30
7:00, 8:00, and 10:00
NATURAL SCIENCE AUD.
Admission: $1
The RFD Boys
Finest iin I}IitetOss
at the
Pretzel Bl
every Thurs., Fri. & Sat.
COMING.
WED., FEB. 12: Charlie Moore & The
Dixie Partners
MON., FEB. 17: Jimmy Gaudreau & the
Country Store
THURS., FEB. 27: Ralph Stanley
the Clinch Mountain Boys
CALL 761-1470 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION

Professional Theatre Program
TOM MALLOW
preents
Lob
Carroll
t
FIdder
ontheRoof
l1 rF& va'vaG-cr, ' 4t ir
Basedon shunoom AIciens stones
By siec'Permsson of AmodPerl

RpQodwd By
RICHARD ALTM~AN

W' Robins, Coro~rph
R Brov yd9

si JOSEPH STEIN
JERRY BOCK
R { b ySHELDONHARNICK
Onpa New warn Pr~idfloO Dtei o r nained byw t
))ROME ROBBINS
ONE NIGHT ONLY!
FRI., FEB. 21, 1975-8 P.M.-POWER CENTER
Advance sales: PTP Ticke Office Mendelssohn Lobby
764-0450

ANNA
TA
Jan. 29,
Lydia N

ARBOR CIVIC THEATRE
presents
RTUFFE
, 30, 31 and Feb. 1
Mendelssohn Theatre
CURTAIN 8 P.M.

Box Office opens daily 1C a.m.
763-1085

UNIVERSITY O' MICHIGAN THEATRE PROGRAM
PRESENTS
BREAD aiyd ROSES
a new play by Donald Hall

Y,

WEONESDAY THROUGH !ATUPDAY,

FEBRUARY 5678.,1975 80-
THE POWER CENTEF OR THE PEHFG',MNG AP"",

K -..,, .r:
f 6 5 . I
si '

Rising Sons
This remarkable group of young stringplayers, THE TOKYO QUARTET, burst upon
the musical scene five years ago when they won first prize in the prestigious Munich
International Competition. For their Ann Arbor debut, they'll perform the following
program, using the famous quartet of matched Amati instruments in loan from the
Corcoran Gallery:
HAYDN: Quartet in B-flat major, Op. 50, No. 1
BARTOK: Quartet No. 5
DEBUSSY: Quartet in G minor, Op. 10
Concert this SUNDAY AFTERNOON, February 2 at 2:30, in RACKHAM AUDI-
TORIUM. Tickets at $3.50, 5, and $6.50 at our Burton Tower office, and at the

-As'. jj?
/;

m

.:fir ; is 1

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