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December 03, 1972 - Image 3

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1972-12-03

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Page Three

Sunday, December 3, 1972


DIAL 668-6414

Ma an
C& the

Mar golds
'a strangely
The production of The Effect
of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-
Moon Marigolds, brought to the
Power Center by the Professional
Theatre Program, is a strange-
ly unmoving treatment of Paul
"Marigolds" is a powerful
"family" drama in the s a m e
league with "The Glass Menag-
The title refers to a prize-win-
nling science project on the com-
parative growth rates of mari-
gold seeds exposed for varying
lengths of time to radiation. The
experiment is also a metaphor
for the damaged, stunted lives of
Beatrice andgher daughter Ruth.
The youngest daughter, Tillie, a
plain, brilliant girl, has the only
hope of salvation from the dreary
killing life which surrounds her.
The winning project and her
growing determination to learn
is her ticket to a brighter fu-
ture. Tillie, like the marigold
which was exposed to radiation
for only a short time, will grow

The women, as Beatrice says,
live a "half-life" full of smashed
dreams and lies.
Buried in a run-down h o u s e
with newspaper covering t h e
windows, she lashes out at both
her daughtersina pathticbat-
tempt to forget her despair and
contempt for herself.
Ruth, half-crazy and plagued
by convulsions, "runs around the
playground with her brassiere
on" in her own losing battle with
This is all very strong stuff.
But the company manages to
drain most of the emotion from
"Marigolds". Even Ruth's con-
vulsion attack is rather ho-hum.
Teresa Wright as Beatrice lacks
the necessary mix of hardness
and defeat. Beatrice is a tri-
angle of paradoxical emotions.
Persecuted, nicknamed "Betty
the loon" in school, she taunts
Tillie for being "different." She
wounds everyone around her, hin-
cluding herself.
But Wright only emphasizes the
woman's defeat, neglecting Bea-
trice's savage intensity.
Robin Nolan as Ruth delivers a
weak performance. Nolan's Ruth
was definitely not the woman
who, as Beatrice says, wears a
dress that is tight enough to cut
off her circulation.
Helen Ross is lovely as Nanny,
an old "half-corpse" that Bea-
trice is nursing for $50 per week.

~Play It':
Poor adaptation




Joan Miro
displays graphi

"Actress on
her way to
an Oscar!"
is brilliant!"


Recent graphics by J o a n
Miro, now on display at the Lan-
tern gallery, offer a visual ex-
perience that just shouldn't be
Originally a Spaniard, now in
his early seventies, Miro is known
as a master of modern art. In
his earlier days, he was consid-
ered a cubist, but now he is more
of a surrealist artist. He is one
of the undisputed masters of the
twentieth century. His works are
significant to him as the fruits
of a personal creative experi-
ence. No greater contrast can
be imagined than that w h i c h
exists between the imaginative
power, the passionate drive, the
grim humor, and the elaborately
cultivated delirium of Miro's art.
What renders Miro's art parti-
cularly refractory to definition is
its universality of appeal and its
single-mindedness of concept.
The motifs are recurrently t h e
same: women, birds, stars. The
forms are consistently organic.

Sat., Sun.-"Play", 5:40, 9:00-"Diary", 7:20 A UNIVERSAL P
Mon., Tue.-"Diary", 7:20-"Play", 9:00

UNTIL 9:00 P.M.
- d
"f:. {: B (
Miss J makes her entrance
in dresses richly ribbed
'd' and ruffled. . .winter white
holiday glamour, each with
.., .. --"
; g Yruffled U-neck, ribbed
top, back zip. Dacron
polyester/wool in sizes
5-13 by Jonathan Logan.
A. Casually chic with
long sleeves, $32.
B. Dramatic ankle length
with halter top
and belt, $40.
A (4
{l }sW ...A'--A
T t 09'
flt ?: ldey(4
f }iij,, (4
i~j~i ;:"S: ':}(4

The colors are contrasting and
relatively simple and predictable
in their relationships. Primary
textures, colors, images and emo-
tions prevail throughout. Where-
as they provide a basis for Miro's
immediate appeal, they also pro-
vide the basis for his general in-
Although he has passed his
prime, he is still developing new
printing techniques. He has con-
tinued to experiment with these
techniques of printmaking a n d
has made an important contribu-
tion to printers.
The most common appraisal of
Miro's art is that it is naive or
primitive. Far from being a sim-
plistic endeavor, Miro's art aims
at the reflection of a traditional
yet complex vision of existence as
the artist experiences and inter-
prets it in his daily life. This
vision, which molds his ethic and
his aesthetic, is intimately relat-
ed to his character and tempera-
The works displayed in this
show at the Lantern Gallery
have been created since 1968.
They are lithographs and etch-
"Trace Sur La Paro 2" which
is an etching meaning "Drawn on
the Wall," utilizes an emulsion
technique where he uses a lot
of freedom, arriving at a very
interesting deep erosion of the
plate in black color. In o t h e r
portions of the print, it seems
as though he has dropped some-
thing on the plate to get li g h t
contrasting effects.
"Dormir Sous La Lune," an
etching where the glue or acrylic
is spread on the plate and is
pressed where the impression of
glue goes onto the paper and
picks up texture called embossel
which is combined on the plate at
etched areas.
In "Le Rebelle," an etching,
he uses a very light soft hal
of color that fades away. Thin
lines are scratched into the plate
and eaten with acid.
In other prints such as "L
Cosmonante," he also uses the
embossel where the paper is
pressed into the design and the
design comes forward.
Other works displayed are a
lithograph "Agora" and "Trace
Sur La Paro 1."
See JOAN, Page 10

At best, Play It As It Lays can
lead you to, and perhaps can
even enhance, the tight, power-
ful novel from which it evolved.
But on the screen, the story of a
woman's failure to find meaning
falls short of evoking the chilling,
gut depression that arises from
Joan Didion's book, even though
the author and her husband pre-
pared the screenplay,
Depression, of course, you can
pick up for a dime. Each ama-
teur existentialist has a favorite
way of reaffirming the lack of
meaning in the universe-read-
ing the newspaper is by far the
The chill you can get for an
additional $1.25, the price of
Didion in paperback. The visuals
at $2.50 are an optional, un-
necessary part of the package.
The film is interesting enough,
and, at worst, cannot spoil the
impact of the novel. Director
Frank Perry, however, presents
nothing new in his film tech-
nique. What he does, he does
well: his work is skillful but
hardly original.
_ Maria, and that's Mar-eye-ah
(Tuesday Weld), is the actress
whose search carries her from
freeway to freeway and from bed
to bed. Her husband (Adam
Roarke), totally wrapped up in
his film-making and his public
'image, cannot grasp her despair.
No one in the flashy, hip-artist
jet set that composes her milieu
can begin to understand, with
the exception of BZ (Anthony
Perkins), her husband's producer.
Structurally, the film reflects
Maria's state of mind with a
rapid-fire, nonsequential bom-
bardment of images and events.
The editing offers no smooth tran-
sitions to ease the task of the
viewer already deprived of time
sequence. Perry chops off each
scene without mercy (to use a
phrase of Pauline Kael, offered
to describe Ken Russell's treat-
ment of Savage Messiah), he
"edits with a cleaver," and often
accompanies the abrupt cut with
a sharp noise or snap change in
light level. Toward the beginning,
in fact, the disjointing is paced
so rapidly that the viewer can
barely absorb the images, let
alone identify characters or dis-
cern a plot.
This is intentional, of course,
and it certainly keeps us on our
toes. Lost, however, is the grow-
ing sense of despair which Didein
does communicate in her novel
despite a similarly fragmented
structure. The New Yorker de-
scribed the movie as "visually
handsome but a peculiarly pas-
- sive viewing experience.
The film's Maria, unlike the
heroine of the book, lacks depth
and motivation. The plot line,
when it emerges, largely revolves
t around an abortion. The film fol-
lows her uneasiness in making
plans, and quick shots of the
operation and repeated flash-
back images indicate that Maria
suffers a sense of loss.
t We see, but we don't feel.
Didion's prose, on the other hand,
draws us into Maria's mind and
intricately involves us with de-
tails that communicate her hor-
ror as she realizes she is preg-
i nant (the film states the fact of
her pregnancy in a single line,
entirely eliminating the buildup).
t The book makes us feel her loss
afterwards, with a depth of emo-
tion that the movie simply can-
not convey.
The same lack of feeling ap-
pears in the treatment of Maria's
mentally retarded daughter. The
dialogue is all there, although
e substantially rearranged; they

talk about Kate and she appears
in several sequences. But Maria' s
sense of attachment fails to ma-
Maria's despair is faith, not
shattered, but lost piece by piece
along the road. Director Perry
and Didion, in her screenplay,
rely too much on "meaningful"
facial expressions to transmit
this emotion. Tuesday Weld's
flower-child smile and big eyes
filled with lost looks are good,
but not good enough.
To the film's credit, however, is
the expansion of BZ's role. The
producer figures prominently
only toward the end of the novel,
a rather sudden transformation.
Didion's screenplay and Anthony
Perkin's portrayal color the char-
acter with cynicism and percep-
tiveness, and justify more thor-
oughlyrhis rapport with Maria's
One book reviewer praises
Didion's prose for its "under-
statement." Unfortunately, the

Highly innovative:
Players' structure

Arts Editor
The experience of University
Player's Showcase Production-
a structure of Harold Pinter's
Old Times - transcends all for-
merly understood theatrical defi-
nitions. We have here experi-
mentation with form that is noth-
ing less than exciting. It is down-
right invigorating and re-affirms
my long-held belief that Ann Ar-
bor is indeed a culturally pro-
gressive community, open to in-
novation in the arts.
This term, the Players have
been gradually moving away
from the traditional s e r i o u s
drama and humorous fluff that
stagnated their creative growth
during former years. Their pres-
entation of Samuel Beckett's
Endgame showed a spark of in-
novation; the structure of Old
Times is a total bonfire.
Director Edward Cicciarelli
and his cast of six, venture into
new territory, grasping for new
definitions of theatre.
' Cicarelli's attempt at redefini-
tion is reflected in a "new vo-
cabulary" which is explained in
the six-pages of notes that ac-
company the program. Old Times
is a superstructure (not a play);
it is performed in a space (not
a theatre); in the space we see
structurists (not artists or ac-
tors) who structure (not act).
The "space" is really unde-
fined. In the center of People's
Ballroom, geometrically - shaped
blocks, and hanging ropes and
chains mark a center of action.
But throughout the evening, the
structurists bring themselves and
their blocks out to the audien-e
which is seated on the floor in a
circle around this central point.
Words heard on stage are
spoken not only to convey their
obvious meanings, but the six
structurists, stripped of all but
white translucent body-stockings,
play with word forms, first drag-
ging out the sounds, then articu-
lating them rapidly, and then (as

a musician improvising a melo-
dy) arranging the basic sounds
to form other words, other mean-
ings. As one structurist explored
the word DELIGHTED . . .and
at one point uttered the greeting
"Hi ya ted!"
My appraisal of the structurists
who speak the words is difficult.
I have none of the reviewer's
typical tools, such as characteri-
zation, to fall back on. Nancy
Blum, Chris Labeau, Michael
Langworthy, Ann Lindke, Karen
Mann, and James Tissot are ef-
fective in their roles (although
I'm sure that "roles" is not the
correct word . . .). Their voices
reach a wide range of pitches as
they explore words freely, as in
a very loose stream of consci-
busness ... giving to the sounds
alone a wide range of feelings.
The structurists also exhibit
physical dexterity as they climb
about rope and webs which hang
above the central placespace.
In one "piece," the four wo-
men are preched in a rope hang-
ing, while the two men lie on
back headrests facing the wo-
men. The men say "Oh, how the
ghost of you clings," after which
the women sigh. The words are
repeated over and over again,
with a taped voice speaking for a
different structuralist in each
Taped voices, which are used
throughout the evening, end the
experience. Tape recorders are
hung to the ropes and remain to
speak to the audience long after
the structuralistsnhave disap-
Whether or not there is fidelity
to Pinter in this production is
really of minor concern. With-
out totally violating the play-
wright's work, the Players ap-
pear to go beyond content into
a consideration of form. They use
Pinter's words-use them to ex-
plore even larger questions about
language, about "acting," about
the concept of theatre itself.


opposite is true of Perry's film.
The theme is clear enough, as
stated in both versions:
"I used to ask questions, and I
got the answer: nothing. The
answer is nothing."
Perry captures the theme skill-
fully in his opening shot- keep-
ing its distance, the camera
watches as Maria walks forward
through a row of tall hedges,
circles slowly around a barren
garden and then returns down
the row of hedges.
The film retains some of the
book's best passages and visual-
izes some of its prominent
themes. The rattlesnake flashes
son, the "instantaneous peril"
'(quote from the novel) that can
strike anyone at any time; free-
ways swirl majestically, to be
travelled with no destination in
These are the nails; it is'for the
viewer torpound them into place.
The film-makers, however, too
often take the hammer in hand.
As if to compensate for the lack
of feeling behind the characters,
heavy phrases are repeated un-
necessarily and a number of
dialogues are inserted to make
the theme more explicit. At these
points, the viewer wishes that
Perry could somehow have tr4ns-
mitted Didion's penchant for un-
derstatement to the screen.




toni ght
6:00 4 News
7 Movie
"Heller in Pink Tights." (1960)
50 Star Trek
56 World Press
6:30 4 News
56 Consumer Game
7:00 2 TV 2 Reports
4 George Pierrot
9 Tom Jones
5) Lawrence Welk
56 Freshman Congressmen
1:30 2 The House without a
Christmas Tree
4 World of Disney
56 International Performance
8:00 7 FBI
50 Emperor's New Clothes
See LISTINGS, Page 10

MUSIC-Composer's Forum at the SM Recital Hall at 8
features the premieres of eleven new works by student
composers; University Musical Society presents Handel's
Messiah conducted by Donald Bryant this afternoon at
2:30, Hill Aud.
DRAMA-Professional Theatre Program presents Marigolds
today at 3, 8 in the Power Center; University Players
present Pinter's Old Times tonight and tomorrow night
at 8, People's Ballroom (502 E. Washington).
POTTERY-School House Pottery Sale today 10-5 at 4991
Whitmore Lake Road.
FILMS-Cinema Guild features Duvivier's Tales of Manhattan
in Arch. Aud. tonight at 7; Cinema II presents Hitch-
cock's Thirty-nine Steps at 7 and Psycho at 9 tonight
in Aud. A; Cinema Guild features Chaplin shorts tomor-
row night, 7, 9:05, Arch. Aud.

Tonight & Tomorrow, 8 P.M.!



i I

III M. T. KRM _ I I Rf.Mnnnutyj6 &. . : .

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