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April 06, 1978 - Image 7

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1978-04-06

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The Michigan Daily-Thursday, April 6, 1978-Page 7


that best describes A
Wax, a film devoid of feel
and truth. The movie trie
the success of Saturday
and American Graffiti,
down more than it con
makers have ignored
details as plot, continuity
terization, concentrating i
overcrowded soundtrack
irritatingly choppy snatc
rock tunes. At its core, A
Wax is a hollow film tha
respect for either the mus
or the history of which it is
The film centers around
current stories. Themes m
ter word, since none of the
developed enough to be
sible. The various story th
the canonization of disc
Freed, who, with his plann
the Paramount Theatre,s
the very fate of rock'n'rol
Other plot strands inch
making its way to the top,
writer's success, and a1
abbreviated that it is;

Tim McIntire hosts his first annual rock'n'roll show at the Paramount Theater
in "American Hot Wax."

Just Family'

has lots of tale

Wax' R ock'n 'roll
AN telligible. THERE IS AN everpresent sense
None of these themes seem to have the kids acting as extras are justt
is the word any connection beside the fact that and it plays havoc with the already
merican Hot they're on the same reels of film. atmosphere of the film. Anybody w
ling, respect, Perhaps American Hot Wax would been to a rock concert knows the p(
s to build on have been better if its makers had and energy an audience can have,
Night Fever decided to tell something close to the the kids who make up the audien
but it tears truth. Unfortunately, they did not. By Freed's concert just don't mak
structs. The 1959 rock'n'roll was no longer They seem to be following or
such minor struggling for survival. One concert in moving mechanically to a prereco
and charac- a Bronx theater would not have been beat.
nstead on an the earth shaking event the movie Money is the greatest concer
filled with makes it out to be. Also, several of the Hollywood, (rather, the acquisition
hes of early as quickly and painlessly as poss
merican Hot American Hot Wax is a cheaply n
t shows little film. Not inexpensive - Ch
ic at its heart r Although it is based in New York
based. majority of the film was shot in Cal
i several con- nia, so not until halfway through
light be a bet- film can the viewer figure out exz
plot lines are where the film is taking place. Th(
comprehen- references to New York are a
reads include whelmed by sunsplashed streets
jockey Alan dried grass. This makes a mixe
ied concert at film even more confusing.
seems to hold With all its faults, American Hot
1 in his hands. still has energy. The power of1
ude a group rock'n'roll is hard to destroy, an
a young song few instances music is used effect
love story so help to carry the film along. Some o
almost unin- adolescent slapstick works i
disjointed way, and though one
songs are treated as if they were con- leave the theater confused, it's ha
temporary in 1959, when they were ac- be unhappy.
tually released a good deal before. The last shot is a little touching, a
ALAN FREED does not deserve the with being one of the most blatant
mantle of sainthood which the film, of the truth as a lie in Holly'
places upon his head, because Freed history. The film is the final stage
was about as far from the kind-hearted evolution of the 50's teen-pix, t
in" - and in- patriarch the film turns him into as any down and remolded to fit the needs
lent is either man could be. He was corrupt, and more cynical generation. With
y down, or by heavily exploited his position as a new film the history of the fifti
ales. major disc jockey. The film deals with being rewritten, as Hollywood pu
duction aims none of this, and worse, tosses off one truth aside for the sake of enter
trumentally, line half truths. ment. American Hot Wax is a visi
e 3-5 minute A trend evident in current films
has an uplif- which deal with the fifties is the
Bridgewater showcasing of the men of the age as THE SEAGULL
'rics that it's selling points for the film. American by ANTON CHEKHOV
all others on Hot Wax used Chuck Berry and Jerry
Lee Lewis. Neither fits. Both seem too
transparent old to inspire their young audiences to PRESENTED BY
slowly, and heights of ecstasy. The acts they per- APRIL 6,7 8 8PM
ed. form are dispirited renditions of EAST QUAD AUDITORIUM
ere are a few routines two decades worn, not fitting Tickets Available
ohn's "Sorry into the body of the film, showing the Michigan Union Box Office 763-2071
,and "Music pace more than they electrify.
a music box. The acting doesn't rise above the
iys a purity of level of the rest of the film, remaining
able. steadfastly mediocre. Tim McIntire
otentially ex- keeps up a slick fatherly facade,
unchallenging Laraine Newman as a young
credibly pure songwriter has a style as cliched as they:
he music. But role. The worst performances,
riminately, a however, are not given by any central
btleties of the characters, but by the extras. Freed's 3 --
an important question and answer session with a girl
tless dancin' in line for his concert sounds as if it was
amily, it is all taken right out of a detergent commer-

that the fifties through t
that, ties, an enactment
thin fantasies. It is afa
rho's truth. Perhaps ii
ower Perhaps we deserv
ce of
e it.
rded The
n of a SOlUti(
of it;
, the
e few
d up
d the
f the
n a
rd to
L uong Mon., Tues., 1
,wood StSnV
n the
s of a
es is
ushes PG ©19772OT
on of '

:)n but .
you help.
of Dimes

e it

eyes of the seven-
our most current
tale being told as
what we want.


butfar too much molasses

T AKE FROM THE fusion field one of the
young bass players, a handful of talented keyboardists,
a dependable drummer, and one superb percussionist, mix
well with a beautiful lady who has a sweet soaring voice, and
what does one have? Sadly, in the case of Dee Dee
Bridgewater's album Just Family, one has an almost silly
recording, smothered in the kind of sentimentality and
syrupiness usually reserved for Cat Stevens records and
cherry bon-bons.
There is no question about the quality of the musicianship,
in the record. It was produced by Stanley Clarke, best known

Just Family
Dee Dee Bridgewater
I:YeAtra 611/9

Family," "Children are the Spirit," "Sweet Rai
deed throughout the album the tremendous ta
squandered by having improvisations mixed wa
simply relegating the musicians to supporting r
The first two songs showcase Clarke's pro(
throughout the album; no risks are taken ins
and. songs are carefully crafted to fit into th
length "easy listening" format. "Just Family"
ting melody, and displays a bouncy rhythm.
puts so much energy and radiance into the ly
easy to forget their inanity. Its harmonies, like
the album, are overdubs of Bridgewater's voice.
THE SECOND SONG, "Maybe Today," is a
but still moving song of lost love. It flows
Bridgewater's delivery is especially well-round(
Not much else stands out on the record. Th
good moments during a rendition of Elton J
Seems to be the Hardest Word" (of all things!)
Maker" is a simple song I can hear coming from
The duet between Bridgewater and Corea displa
feeling, although the lyrics once again are laugh
Dee Dee Bridgewater has a beautiful, p(
pressive voice. Despite the constraints of the u
song formats on this record, she sings with an in
tone and feeling that is best when it soars over t
since she does rise above the melody so indisc
little like a disciplined Minnie Ripperton, the su
songs often escape her. Potentially, she can be
artistic voice in a field glutted with talen
machines. But right now, judging from Just Fa
just potential.


for his work with Chick Corea. The back-up unit is rotated on
nearly every cut, but it includes such names as Ronnie
Foster, George Duke, Airto Moreira, Alphonso Johnson, and
Chick Corea. ,
Bridgewater has often sung brilliantly before, but almost
always with jazz groups. She has sung with big bands like the
That Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra, and performed in much
smaller settings also. For some reason, most likely for
market value, Clarke has taken Bridgewater out of her usual
setting and decided to constrain her talents in simple, unin-
spiring stylings.
MOST OF THE songs sound very similar. Stanley Clarke
plays the same bass riff on three of the tracks - "Just

Artist Brian Halsey:

Visualizing an ideal

IN A STUDIO above the Pretzel Bell,
Brian Halsey, an internationally
known free-lance artist, creates hard-
edged graphics, serigraphs and acrylic
paintings. He says his images "en-
deavor to visualize an ideal-a simple
and unified image of reality that will
transcend our everyday experience."
His color application creates an
emanating light in ordered structures
which are suspended in deep space.
These qualities produce "a tangible
symhjol of the creating and sustaining
forces of the universe," he adds. "They
are the fundamental units which are the
building blocks of nature."
Halsey says his works represent the
trinity. But the names of the paintings,
Numinos II, Alptia III, etc., are Grecian
derivatives. "I'm trying to use Greek
roots," he explains, "which will be in-
dicative of what they (his designs)
represent." He notes his graphics point
to "cosmic order" just as the Greeks-
pointed to mathematics. They are
mechanical and related to
mathematics, and knowledge of
mathematics leads to an understanding
of nature-a combination of the two
suggests cosmic order through
Most people buy Halsey's works for
interior decoration. Blue paintings are
his worst sellers, he says, because in-
terior decorators decided blue is "out"
this year. In fact, hard-edge graphics in
general are unpopular in art galleries.
Yet, according to David Brininstool,
associate director at Forsythe
Galleries in Nickles Arcade, Halsey
sold 21 prints and four paintings at his
first show in Ann Arbor.
DESPITE THE "undesirability" of
Halsey's style, he is undoubtedly much
in demand. He has commissions in over
forty galleries in the United States, in-

cluding Omega Fine Arts, Scaglione
Gallery and Forsythe Gallery, and has
given over sixty exhibitions since 1974,
one of them in St. Gallen, Switzerland,
at Gallerie Battenhaus. His works were
also in the 150th Annual Exhibition of
the National Academy of Design.
A few of Halsey's paintings can be
found in the collections of the National
Museum of Modern Art in Kyoto,
Japan, Denis Rene, in New York, Kauf-
fman Fine Arts, in Texas, the Detroit

COMPETITIONS, art shows and auc-
tions provided Halsey with the oppor-
tunity to publicize his works. Soon af:
terwards, galleries were displaying his
However, he warns the young artist
to "keep prices reasonable.'' "After
you have a name for yourself you
achieve a certain amount of bargaining
power," he explains. "Then you can
start pushing for commissions." The
Forsythe Gallery in Ann Arbor only
recently commissioned him to do 48
paintings in the next two years.
Besides continuing his own work,
Halsey buys the work of young artists to
help get them started. Because of his
interest in people, Halsey says he had
difficulty finding time for his art while

teaching in Spring Arbor College.
"Somebody who has a need is more im-
portant than a painting you are doing,"
he explained.
In 1975 Halsey took a sabbatical,
leaving his job as Spring Arbor
Professor of Art to devote full time to
his art. He remains concerned about his
ability to communicate. "If I don't get
some reaction-I don't care whether
it's positive or negative-I've failed."
The earth, as an enormous reser-
voir of heat, has "hot spots" that
generally occur near areas of volcan-
ic activity that took place in the
relatively recent geologic past.

Democratic Candidate for
U.S. Senate
Friday, April 7-12 Noon
439 Mason Hall
Paid for by Phil Powers for U.S. Senate Committee

Halsey's hard-edged

Institute of Arts,' the National Collec-
tion of Fine Arts in the Smithsonian In-
stitution, and the A.D.I. Gallery in San
Francisco. "Half the battle is doing
good art," says Halsey, "the other half
is convincing them it's an inv
His success as a " " g was the
result of an exhau prself-promotion
push. To become prominent, Halsey
says, "You have to have an image that
is self-contained and unique enough so
that it can be worked into a series. My
visual language is cubes and blocks."
But Halsey doesn't limit himself to just
one image. He also paints super-
realistic subject matter. "An artist
may have more than one style," he

Friday, April 7
Professor Marilyn Young,
History Dept., Residential College
812 MONROE (corner of Oakland)
---- Deciding on
. .a Law Career?
Monday, April 10-7:30 P.M.
1025 Angell Hall

Don't gamble with your classes
Check out Course Evaluations in your school,
college, or department

The Ann Arbor Film Cooperative
presents at ANGELL HALL
Thursday, April 6


1 n

* What is law
school like?




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