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March 18, 1975 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1975-03-18

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Tuesdoy, March 18, 1975


Page, Psve:

Tuesday, March 1 8~ 1975 THE MICHIGAN DAILY Page Five




trou bling

Arts and Entertainment Editor
Viewers at this year's Ann Arbor
Film Festival couldn't help but notice
a higher-than usual quantity of boos
and hisses interspersed through the
nightly screenings. Audience frustration
with the festival schedule seemed to be
up this year, and with good reason:
1975's product featured some excellent
efforts in motion photography, but very
few of the usual sort of independent
"theme" films.
Themlast few years have seen the
label "film" develop a special, ex-
clusive connotation: the assembling of
images captured through motion pho-
tography into a cohesive unit to express
a theme or philosophy.
There was not very much of that in
Architecture Auditorium over the past
week. The thirteenth version of one
of America's best independent film fes-
tivals contained very little cohesive
development or thematic exposition.
Instead, what we saw were some nicely
crafted illustrations of the expansion
of traditional art forms into motion

Through The Corn, for example. Laugh-
lin started with a frantic flute solo
soundtrack and built around it a col-
lection of equally frantic views of her
sister running through a corn field.
The result was an exquisitely timed and
polished piece of motion photography.
But at least in the thematic sense,

resembled an abstract kaliedoscope.
But again, Perz's work was visually
impressive yet thematically and aes-
thetically most unsatisfying-from the
usual point of view of film criticism.
There were, of course, several well-
organized and quite innovative film
efforts here and there through the fes-

"The thirteenth version of one of America's best inde-
pendent film festivals contained very little cohesive
development or thematic exposition. Instead, what we
saw were some nicely crafted illustrations of the expan-
sion of traditional art forms into motion photography."

made the final judging process ratherI
difficult. The expressed purpose of the
Ann Arbor Film Festival is to recognize
"artists exploring the boundaries of
the cinema world"-and that includes,
of course, photographers exploitinig the
motion characteristics of cinema as an
expanded form of classic art.
Nevertheless, I don't think it was
wise to juxtapose both traditional and
"art" styles at one screening. The in-
tentions and orientation of each ap-
proach are entirely separate-and, al-
though they can be successfully inte-
grated (recall the last reels of 2001),
they require different critical view-
In the end, that might have been
the major fault in this year's festival.
There was good material from both
approaches on the schedule, but the
combined presentation didn't help the
viewer properly evaluate and place
in context each effort. Perhaps a little
better organization might have helped
the festival assimilate more readily
what appears to be a rapidly growing
chasm between two schools of thought
in independent cinema.

Have a flair for
artistic writinq?
If you are interest-
or writing feature
stories a b o u t the
drama, dance, film
arts: Contact Arts
Editor, c/o The
M ichigan Daily.
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Movie Village-761 -2733
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Consider Kathleen Laughlin's Susan
Susan Through The Corn was not what
we have come to call "film."
TREE FALL, a five minute collage
by Dan Perz, fit into the same category.
Perz collected what must have been
hundreds of different views of the
leaves and branches of a majle tree
and edited them into a continuous
strip of rapidly changing images that


tival. Two animated shorts, Red Ball
Express by Steve Segal and Mirror
People by Kathy Rose, made nice use
of film's ability to twist about time and
space. And The Plaint of Steve Kreines,
a solid (if underedited) documentary
look inside a factionalized family pro-
duced by Jeff Kreines, showed inven-
tive use of cinema verite techniques.
In fact, the dichotomy must have

* Full-time 3-year day program
* Part-time day and evening programs
Al programs lead to the Juris Doctor De.ree and celibihfity for
(itornio Bor exorn.
Accredited Provisionally-State Bar of Calif.
8353 Sepulveda Blvd., Sepulveda, Ca. 91343-894-5711
Sat., April 19 8 p.m. Hill Aud.
Tickets ao on sale tomorrow at the Michigan Union box
office, Union lobby (10:30 to 5:30 p.m. daily).
AND PLEASE: remember there's no smoking or
drinking permitted inside Hill Aud

Slim pickings diminish

Film Fest

Spotty showings
feature family
life, surrealism

a magic marker, a stop watch
and an IQ of about 30. Aura
Corona, by Dennis Pies, was a
welcome improvement. Faint,
amoeba-like f o r m s a p p e a r

By KIM POTTER against a plain white back-
and GEORGE LOBSENZ ground, swirling around and1
A documentary with a dif- through each other. They grad-"
Adncetry washeunchallenged ually evolve into larger, more
highlight of an otherwise no- complex organisms, in partner-
very-distinguished group at the ship with a subtle musical
Satryight severo'clock score that grows along with the
Saturday ght seven olc visuals (The meshing of sight;
shoeff Kand sound was remarkably ef-
Jeff Kreines The Pla nt oa fective and deserves special
Steve Kreines may well be.a note)Crona was entirely an-
landm ark: The first In-Fam ily no e. C r n as e tr l m
Documentary. In chronologizing mated and surely, beautifully
the tribulations of a young post- controlled throughout.
graduate trying to break away The festivities swiftly return-+
from parental domination, di- ed to dudsville in the form of
rector Kreines chose a very Cloth, a 21-minute bore con-1
convenient source: His own cocted by James Herbert. Three,
brother and parents. The result nudes, one male and two fe-
was a sometimes sad, more male, amble listlessly around
often hilarious commentary on outdoors then indoors then out-
both the differences separating doors again. Herbert employs1
and the bonds joining the gen- varied filters, occasional soft-+
eration gap. focus, and the usual stopframei
Kreines' eye is at once both technique which has swiftly be-1
merciless and gentle. He come the biggest cliche in the;
catches his subjects at their festival. The constant flashing
most awkward, inept moments, picture change is extremely
but there is no malice in his hard on the eyes for so long a
vision. This is simply my fam- period, and unimaginably far
ily, he seems to say, and what- from the lyricism the director
ever comedy is there is part so obviously hoped to capture.!
of the human comedy wruch af- The time slot's last two en-
flicts us all, tries seemed clearly devised to
The remainder of the - to 9 try audiences' souls. Paul Camp-
slot was predominately abstract bell's You Can't Shoot Movies
and mostly pedestrian. Harvey Vertically Unless You're Willing
Choa's CC contained numbers, to Turn the Projector on itst
this weekl
Excitement builds as
Rostropovich to return
Question: Where does wonder cellist/conductor Mstislav Ros-
tropovich go when he has a two day break in his touring schedule?
The answer is an unlikely one, and for the University Musical
Society, a joyous one: The Soviet cellist comes back to Ann Arbor.
This Saturday at Hill Auditorium, Mstislav Rostropovich re-1
turns for his fifth Ann Arbor concert appearance, where he will
participate as both conductor and soloist. .'
In this special performance, Rostropovich will conduct the
University Symphony Orchestra in the first half of the program.
Then after the intermission, he will solo in Saint-Saens Cello Con-
certo in A Minor, with regular University Orchestra conductor1
Theo Alcantara fulfilling the podium duties.
Rostropovich made his first U. S. concert recital appearance
in Ann Arbor last January, and now after last week's conducting
debut in Washington, D.C., he returns here to conduct prior to a
Chicago appearance next week. These two facts pay enormous
tribute to the University Orchestra, which Rostropovich himself
has described as "highly professional," and to the Musical Society
and Music School.
When he was here January 19, Rostropovich said: "I am very
fond of Ann Arbor and of the University of Michigan and I have
been here repeatedly. I am convinced that the University plays
a tremendous part in the propagation of good music and its enjoy-
ment in this general area."
"I would like to date all the receipts from this performance,
which includes the tickets and also contributions to the continued
well-being and success of the University Musical Society. I would
also like to use part of this money to establish a scholarship to be
used by gifted and needy musical students," he added.
Rostropovich is considered to be one of the greatest living
cellists and his 33 year old career has not left a stone unturned
in the cello world.
In his conducting debut, last week, overwhelmed critics were
at a loss for words in attempting to describe his masterful per-
formance. Ann Arbor music lovers should hope for as much, as
Rostropovich's yisit promises to be an unexpectedly dramatic
highlight to the musical season.
Brandeis University
Hiatt Institute-Israel
Year Program or Fall Term only Also open to
qualified students for the Spring Term only
0 Juniors and Seniors eligible

Side proved very much the piece
of nothingness its cutesy cover-
up title suggested it might be.
A long series of tintype photo-
portraits of couples flashed by
on the screen, bathed in garish!
hues of gray and pink. The
sound of many ticking clocks
(the second-biggest cliche in the
festival) proceeded in the back-'
ground. Period. Pass the reefer.:
Dominating the nine o'clock
showing were two fairly lengthy
pieces that delved deeply into
the realm of surrealism. Jeffer-
son Circus Songs by Susan Pitt
Kraning was the more themati-
cally-oriented of the two. She
offered up an incredibly elabo-
rate, ornate film, containing'
both animation and film footage.
The two medium are interwoven
to form a distiyctly other-
worldly atmosphere. The sub-
ject matter of this piece was
loosely outlined as a far-ranging
comment on elements within
our society, ranging from in-
tellectuality to plastic sexuality.-
Because of its highly personal
nature, this film was not readily
comprehensible at all times.
And yet, it obviously had a
message of import that glim-
mered through the stunningly
beautiful staging.
The other major work was
perhaps less mentally stimulat-
ing, but it was a visual tour de
force. Divided into seven sep-
arate images, Pat O'Neill's
Saugus Series experimented
with color, composition and!
shape in creating some positive-
ly mesmerizing sequences. Es-
pecially eye-catching was a
lines and dots pattern tha
amazed with its intricacy and
The ubiquitous Curt McDowell
was represented once again by
a humorous little ditty called
Fly Me to the Moon. McDowell
satirizes just how far people
will go to accommodate "artis-
tic inspiration." A true comedic
Also provoking a couple of
yucks was the straight-forward
Chinese Restaurants of L.A. and
Orange County by Richard Tur-
ner. Turner pulls no punches in
capturing the essence of Chinese
restaurant tinsel. He supple-.
ments the shots of various eat-
ing establishments with a lilting
folk song which tells a story of
true love, a la "chopsuey, suki-
yaki, tempura, fried rice."
Some splendid animated fea-
tures livened up the proceedings
considerably. A Short History ofl
the Wheel by Loren Bowie was
a breath-taking exercise in ani-
mation. Using Peter Max-ish
variations in color and perspec-
tive, Bowie spins a tongue-in-
cheek tale of how the wheel
came to be.
As might be expected, this
showing also had its share of
duds. Loring Doyle'smBetty
drives a car amused momen-
tarily, then lapsed into tedium.
jHomage to the Chilean Resist-
ance presented the puzzling
combination of socialistic pro-
paganda and naked women, ren-
- --

dering it a complete mystery.,
Famous Love Scenes by Mary'
Moulton was distinguished as
the only film to receive more
hisses than applause. It was
easy to see why. The visuals
consisted of still photos of movie'
stars in romantic poses. The
soundtrack had several female:
voices dubbed over each other in
so clever a manner that nary a
word could be understood. To-
gether, these two components
comprised the very pinnacle of
boredom and irritation.
, - *
Childhod's halycon.
days: A reality for all?
It was a child's world at the
Friday night 11 o'clock showing.
A full seventy minutes of foot-'
age was devoted to an excursion
into two starkly contrasting
By far the most ambitious
effort of the night was The
Abandoned Children (Los Ninos
Abandonades) by Danny Lyon.
This semi-documentary ran an
exhausting sixty - three minutes
in depicting the bleak existence
of "street urchins" in Colom-
bia. It was a polished, affect-
ing work that captured much
of the desperate, hopeless en-
vironment these children growI
up in. Relying minimually on
narration, the film preferred to
make its point through the su-
perbly expressive camera-work:
and snippets of "live" sound-
track. This made for a high de-I
gree of realism in the condi-I
tions the movie portrayed. Un-,
fortunately, what the film gain-
ed in authenticity from this, it
lost in over-all impact. Mean-
dering too much as it was, the
lack of explanation only worsen-
ed the fuzzy focus of the film.
When this combined with the
excessive length, it blunted the
sharp edge this piece couldt
have had.
An altogether different child's
world is explored in Allen
Moore's Play Grounds. Moore,
demonstrates a masterful grasp
of his medium, in this case,
black-and-white film. Display-

ing an impressive array of spe-
cial effects, Moore illustrat-s a
familiar part of every American
childhood. Moore presents the
playground as a child might ex-
perience it. Swings soar high
into the sky, climbing structuresi
tower above, skip-rope chants
drone in the background, creat-
ing a melange of sight and
sound which evoke wistful mem-
ories of childhood.
Besides these two related
films were a grab-bag of cine-:
matic follies of a considerably
lower calibre.
My Blue Heaven by Charles
Johannsen copped the head-
scratcher award for the night
in recognition of its disjointed
quality. Things began with a
tempting crumpet flirting with
a priggish young man in a'
quasi-Victorian setting. The film
then progresses (if that's the
word for it) to scenes of the
two dancing whereupon sudden-
lv an enormous slimy monster
lumbers into view, thrusts the
young man aside, and waltzes
away with the vamp. Through-
out this nonsense, we catch
glimpses of sexual connatation
but nothing emerges approxi-
mating a coherent theme.
Rounding out the showing with
seventeen minutes of good-ana-
tured fun was Night of the
Moles by Chris Ucker. Night of
the Moles is an unabashed spoof
of all those lovably dreadful
T.V. horror movies. Starring
none other than the incompar-
able Jerry Mathers (of Leave
it to Beaver fame), Moles fol-
lowed the prescribed plotsto a
T. This film has got so many
great little flourishes, that you
can forgive the occasional mo-
ments it falls below the level of
Finally, we come to W.I.N.
or the Soma Blues by Izzy Star-
buck which is eleven seconds
of abysmal taste or sheersgen-
ius, depending on your perspec-
tive. In a utshell, this picture
consists of several long-hairs
vomiting variously c o lo r e d
liquids. The point of this piece
was unclear.

April 24 8 p
Tickets st

.m. Cris
ill available at the
Union box office

ler Arena


UAC Leadership Search
UAC Senior Officers 1975-76 are accepting
applications for chairpersons to head UAC
committees including MUSKET, Future Worlds
and Soph Show. For more information, call
UAC (763-1107) or stop by the UAC offices,
2nd floor, Michigan Union.
MUSKET presents:
Power Center
March 20-23, 8 p.m. March 23, 2 p.m.
Tickets on sale March 17-23 at the Power Center box
office. Group rates available. Call UAC MUSKET (763-
1107) for more information.
MEDIATRICS presents:
"Godfather" star Al Pacino in the true story of a police-
man who uncovers believable corruption in the New York
City police department.
March 21, 22 (Fri., Sat.)
7:30, 10 p.m. Not. Sci. Aud.
cominq next weekend: "CAMELOT" starring Richard
Harris and Renessa Redcrave.
If you'd 'like to start o new entertainment activity on
campus, call UAC (763-1107) and leave your name and
telephone no. with Jane Stecer.



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