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March 13, 1975 - Image 5

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1975-03-13

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Thursday, March 13, 1975

THE MIC:HIUAN DAILY

Page Fire I

Thursday, March 13, 1975 THE MICHI(~AN DAILY Poge Five

ANN ARBOR FILM FESTIVAL:

En trie~
By JAMES VALK
and CHRIS KOCHMANSKI
The Ann Arbor Film Festival kicked off
Tuesday night with "Blindman," an absurb
live introductory note that captured much of
the feeling of the first night's offerings. If the
initial eight films are to be considered repre-
sentative of young filmmakers' work, cinema
is clearly headed toward abstract expression-
ism.
Only one film, Ralph Arlyck's Centers of In-
fluence, stuck to cinematic conventions, and
was, perhaps not surprisingly, the most warm-
ly received. Centers presented an intriguing
look at Army recruiting in the distinctive
documentary style of television's 60 Minutes.
Arlyck's subject matter naturally clicked
with the college crowd, but it was his com-
mand of the documentary medium and careful
choosing of scenes that sustained its consid-
erable interest over the half-hour running
time. Centers is film journalism at its finest.
Another film roundly approved by the first
night crowd was Cycles, a co-effort by the
noteworthy Jordan Belson and Stephen Baer.
Cycles was admittedly a visual delight, but
had it run much longer than its 11 minutes,
surely discomfort would have set in.
In a purely visual series of abstractions like
Cycles, the viewer naturally relates most to
images either clearly or vaguely identifiable.
Interestingly, the film contained a number of
images that uncannily resembled stock shots
(full moons, planets in orbit, etc.) from old
horror and science fiction thrillers.
Nonetheless, Cycles impressed me as noth-
ing more than a glorified Seven-Up commer-
cial.
The festival's very first offering, Stores, may
say more about film than any other in the
series. Its mentor, Franklin Miller, plays upon
the viewer's expectations and warps them by
dissolving between shots of shopping mall ac-
tivity clearly out of chronological order.
This distortion of time and cinematic norms
seems at first pointless, but ultimately proves
an unnerving experience. Not only does Mil-
ler's entry expound a specific theory of film,
Stores is too extremely well photographed
cinema.
Other first set entries satirized standard
film forms and practices. Dan Perz's Zoom

reflect
met with hissing and overall hostile reaction,
but he can take heart in the fact that Anto-
nioni's L'Aventura too was booed in its 1960
debut at Cannes.
Zoom consists of a series of identical zoom-
ins, fluctuating in speed, on a nearly motion-
less young woman. Granted the film is mono-
tonous, but it expresses neatly young film-
makers' apparent dissatisfaction with the
zoom's overuse in recent cinema.
Stinky Butt, by Curt McDowell and Mark
Ellinger, is a psychological comedy - a bi-
zarre satire on works like Polanski's Repul-
sion. Butt may well be a loving satire, but its
amateurish camerawork and lack of feeling
for true bad taste restrict its appeal.
The 9:00 showings started off with a short
collage of geometric images entitled Train
Landscape. The film was an attempt to co-
incide abstract sight with actual sound, creat-
ing the sense of rhythmic frenzy that is unique
to the train.
The result was a typically predictable film
that was ultimately saved by its acute sense
of timing between sight and sound, an achieve-
ment that stands as little consolation to the
film as a whole.
AQ, a film by Drake Silliman, was unique
in both concept and technique. Silliman man-
aged to capture a highly professional gloss to
his film of a bewildered pizza delivery man.
It was unfortunate, though, that the film suf-
fered from an abrupt ending that uncomfort-
ably ended a well planned comedic pace
maintained throughout.
Michigan grad Linda Feferman's Linda's
Film on Menstruation was an entertaining ap-
proach to an age old subject that could serve
a legitimate purpose as an informative mode
of communication if presented to the proper
audience.
Working from a grant by the American
Film Institute, Feferman has combined live
action with those quasi-scientific animated
diagrams so prevalent in the great Encyclo-
pedia Brittanica films of yesteryear to create
a jocular vein of satire through her estab-
lished narrative.
In the end, the issue has comfortably sur-
faced in a film that stands as a highly profes-
sional achievement, with the best line of the
film being, "I'm sorry, we're all out of the
large bags."

scope
The last film of the 9:00 program, Richard
Myers' hour-long 37-73, was difficult to cate-
gorize, as its influence varied from early Ar-
thur Penn to Fellini to Bunuel.
Several years ago in this festival, Myers
presented a somewhat longer and somewhat
more coherent film entitled Akran, a work
done very much in the same style as 37-73.
But this films suffers from an apparent
search for material to fit the technique, an
approach that signals doom from the very
conception.
Myers is undisputably an accomplished
cinematographer who is capable of literally
mesmerizing his audience with the degree of
cinematic sophistication that he has achieved
in film technique. But when he attempts to
combine an intellectual idea that theoretically
lends itself to his surrealistic fantasies, the
overall intent and direction of his film be-
comes clouded.
An animated work, The Trouble With Bub-
bles, opened the 11:00 showing, and proved to
be a simple film of geometric contortions that
was very similar to the "warm-up" material
opening the 9:00 show. Its purpose, unlike its
origin, is still a total mystery.
In keeping in accordance with some unwrit-
ten rule of selection that applies to most film
festivals, Humus offers the usual dose of
bestial niceties that include the live birth of
several calves, an odyssey involving a dog's.
placenta, a quivering cat receiving stitches to
its fully exposed hind leg, and a delightful se-
quence involving some poor schmuck deliver-
ing an enema, via his hand (and his arm) to
some cow whose expression was concealed
from the leering cameraman. Maybe this is
the kind of stuff that plays big up in Cam-
bridge where "socially redeeming vahie" has
a slightly different connotation than we mid-

f'i

western hicks are used to.
While the rest of the world is bored by
Emmanuelle, Ann Arborites were being bored
by Glass, a 21-minute silent film that ponders
a young couple in an afternoon session of
lovemaking. The quick exposure flashes that
separated each "chapter" (?) of the film were
greeted by groans as the audience realized
the film was still continuing.
What started out as a legitimate attempt as
sensual eroticism (reminiscent of the mood
created in the afternoon scene in Nicholas
Roeg's Don't Look Now) ended up negating
the maxim, "You can't' get enough of a good
thing."
The most innovative animation film of the
evening was Gary Moore's Armchair Inven-
tions. Employing a distorted version of partial
animation, the film was an amusing percep-
tion of the macho-sexist attitude through the
courtesy of a Submarine Shoot Game. It is a
highly professional display of film as an ex-
pressionistic medium by animation, and an ac-
complished work by a skilled filmmaker and
animator.
The last entry of the opening night was an
effort by Josef Bogdanovich that proved an
unsuccessful attempt at social decadence. The
film was superb technically, highlighted by
some excellent cinematography that literally
flushed the audience with a mul'itude of rich,
vibrant colors.
Regretfully, it becomes difficult to evaluate
such an obviously elaborate production when
the characters fail to move the intellectual
progression of the film. It can only be con-
jectured that Bogdanovich started with a cine-
matic realization that was ultimately lost in
the editing room, thus putting to waste the
generous resources that lie possesses as a
technical craftsman.

T
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Arts page recruiting
The Arts and Entertainment Department of
The Daily is looking for new writers to prepare
criticism and commentary about all kinds of arts
and entertainment events. And tonight between
6:30 and 8:30 is your chance to join us.
If you're interested in covering rock, country,
folk, or classical music, dance, painting and sculp-
ture, literature, film, television, radio, or drama,
just drop by The Daily offices (420 Maynard, be-
hind Barbour, Newberry and the LS&A Building)
anytime between 6:30 and 8:30 tonight and say
hello. Or if you can't make it by then, just give us
a call at 764-0552 and let us know what your
interests are.
Our task on the Arts and Entertainment Page
is a challenging one. Ann Arbor is a highly diverse
city, with an almost endless series of different and
exciting cultural events. We look forward to having
you join us tonight.
-David Blomquist
Arts and Entertainment Editor
LARRY STEIN
RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT DEPT
WYETH LABORATORIES INC.
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA
"Noradrenergic Reward Pathways:
Possible Role in Self-Stimulation,
Long-Term Memory and Schizophrenia"
MARCH 13
MENTAL HEALTH RESEARCH INSTITUTE SEMINAR SERIES
TEA: 3:15 p.m., Room 2059
SEMINAR: 3:45 p.m., Room 1057

Pin gola infects Streisand,
Godfather,' and golf meet

TONIGHT!
13th
Ann Arbor
Film Festival
Screenings toniht thru Fri-
day at 7, 9 & 1 1.
F r e e. showings Friday at
3:00, with Derformance by
Friends Roadshow.
Saturday afternoon screeninq
at 12:30. with performance
by Pero the Clown. Sunday
winners & hiahliahts at 7,
9 & 1 1 at Arch. Aud. &
Aud. A. Anaell Hall. Tickets
on sale nightly at 6:00 p.m.
No advance soles.
$1.50
OLD
ARCHITECTURE
AUDITORIUM
TAPPAN at MONROE
Program info-662-8871
The festival is co-sponsored
by Cinema Guild &
Dramatic Arts Council

ROBERT ALTMAN

FESTIVAL

LAST NIGHT!

SUSANNA YORK

In

i *£ '

IMAN
Beautiful, stunning and frightening as hell.
TONIGHT, THURS. MARCH 13

TONIGHT at 9:00
IF
.FV
theRFD BOYS
A T THE
PRE TZEL DELL
EVERY THURSDAY-9 :00
EVERY FRI. & SAT-l0:00
-~.Ono Wednesday Is Berqain Day!
Until 5 p.m.-AI Seats $1.00
Wed, at 1-3-5-7-9 p m
M E Thurs. at 7 & 9 p~m only
SP n 6 ENDS THURSDAY!
IPeter Locke & Jim Bucklev Present A Mammoth Films Release

By FRANK S. SWERTLOW
NEW YORK (UPI) - Barbra
Streisanid's special on ABC last
Sunday, which ,ooked more like
a 60-minute plug for her new
movie, Funny Lady, raises some
serious questions about the use
of a TV program as a giant
commercial.
The special Funny Girl to
Funny Lady, featured only five
songs during a 25-minute period.
Two of the songs, "Paper
Moon" and "How Lucky Can -
You Get," are from Funny'
Lady. The rest of the show,
filled with' montages of Miss
Streisand's career including
Funny Lady, seemed geared to
huckstering the new film, a
sequel to Funny Girl.
The obvious hustle by the pro-
moters was to tease viewers
with tidbits of Funny Lady,
which will then send them run-
ning to their local theater to
see Miss Streisand in celluloid.
An even more insidious aspect
of the extravaganza was that
Ray Stark, an independent pro-
ducer who developed Funny
Lady for Columbia Pictures,
also handled the production of
the TV special for ABC. This
further commercialized the
show.
But what made the event par-
titularly disgusting was that the
partially live and partially vid-
eotaped program was aired in
an atmosphere, of charity. It
was supposed to be a benefit
for mentally retarded children.
One presumes that the mas-
terminds of this special decided
to camouflage the operation by
giving it an aura of a charitable
event. How dare anyone criti-
cize charity, they figured, es-
pecially if it had thewbacking
of the Kennedy clan.
But if this show was for
charity, then why was Miss
Streisand paid $100,000 for her
appearance? Wasn't an hour of
prime time advertising enough?
Why was Dick Cavett, the host,
paid?
People who tuned in to see
Barbra Streisand were cheated.
They sought entertainment, but
what they received was plugola.
There is something very wrong1
about this, very wrong indeed.
If ABC is allowed to operate;
television programming as pub-
lic trust, then the Streisand
special was a betrayal of this
trust. Watching regularly desig-
nated commercials on television
is bad enough-we should not
have to be faced with an entire
show that is an advertisement.
But let us not jump on ABC
alone. Plugola seems to be

trying to capture the scene, the to the opening of the sequel.
flavor of the match. I was there Perhaps NBC was quick to;
and it was a beautiful, gorgeous grab The Godfather for a clean-
weekend, I don't think he was up in the ratings.
guilty of plugola." C'mon Bob. Plugola is a despicable prac-
And at NBC, last year's The tice, and it seems to be creep-
Godfather looked very much like ing into more and more shows.
a giant advertisement for this One way to prevent it is to have
year's Godfather II. However, the networks do it. Another is
a spokesman for NBC said that to have the federal government
part of NBC's agreement with act like a policeman scrutinizing
Paramount Pictures, the pro- and then sanitizing every show
duer of both films, was that on the air. One hopes the net-E
The Godfather to be aired prior works make the first move.

7:00
9:00

$1.25

Ad. A
Angell Hall

Read and Use
Daily Classifieds

Wednesday Is Bargain Day!
Wed, at 1-3-5-7-9 p.m.
Thursday at 7 & 9 only

Young O
Frankenstein
See It Backwards-You
Won't Be Scared!
* PLUS *
and-MEL BROOKS as
"THE CRITIC"

'I

"ONE OF
THE YEAR'S
TEN BEST"

"STAVISK s
one of the most rewarding films
I've seen this year. 99-Noa Sayre, New York rths

Ashkenazy Encore
Since 1956 when VLADIMIR ASHKENAZY came into world prominence by
unanimously winning the Brussels Queen Elizabeth Competition, his awards, appear-
ances, and plaudits have been astounding. Born in Russia and now a citizen of Iceland,
he is clearly one of today's greatest pianists. His recital here next week marks his third
Ann Arbor visit. He performs the following program:

TODAY AT 7 & 9 ONLY!
OPEN AT 6:45
ENDS TONIGHT

"Jean-Paul Belnondo is at his
best. Charles Boyer is effortlessly
elegant. It's a treat to watch him
playingwith Mr. Belmondo' They
seem to greet each other across
the span of movie history."
- Nora Sayre, New York rimes

~uI a
Eu, a

i'if 1 1

Iiyl I

.1°

MOZART: Rondo in A minor
SCHUBERT: Sonata in D major, Op. 53
RACHMANINOFF: Ten Preludes from Op. 32 and 23

!iIIUII~il

A.

" STAVISKY with Jean-Paul
Belmondo is an exquisite re-
creation of the early thirties
milieu of political scandal and
prejudice."
-Judith Crist, New York Magazine
Resnais never makes a false
move...creates the mood missed
tv eGreatGatshy. The cast
'. 1. -;pldid." - Newsweek Magazine

RECITAL NEX' WEDINESDAY, MARCH 19, IN HILL AUDITORIUM NIAT 8:30
Tickets available from $3.50 to 8.50

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