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July 12, 1974 - Image 5

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1974-07-12

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cinemo weekend

Pick of the week:
The Wild One
Cinema Guild, Arch. And.
Fri., 7:30, 9:30
Laslo Benedek made two out-
standing films during his Hun-
garian-Hollywood career as di-
rector: Death of a Salesman
(1952) and The Wild One (1953).
The latter, produced by Stanley
Kramer, has got to be one of the
most exciting and ruthless mot-
orcycle pictures ever filmed.
With a script by John Paxton
(who also penned the nuclear
nightmare On the Beach) and
cinematography by Hal Monr
(the photographer on the orig-
inal 1927 Jazz Singer), the pic-
ture can barely do no wrong --
especially considering the fact
that stars Marion Brando. and
Lee Marvin turn in practically
the performances of their ca-
reers. -
Brando and Marvin arm part
of a gang of Harley-Davidson
degenerates, hot dogs on motor-
bikes that terrorize small West-
ern towns on weekends just for
the fun of it. Brando is a gum-
chewing, bongo-bopping tough
known as "Johnny" who falls
for a small-time waitress in the
middle of his gang's drunken
brawls and comes to a bit of
moral awareness by the movie's
finish. Marvin is the ultimately
filthy lush that challenges John-
ny's way of doing things and
pays the price.
This picture was banned by
the British Board of Film Cen-
Paper Moon
Cinema II, And. A
Fri., Sat., 7, 9, 11
Paper Moon is really a lot of
fun, mainly because Tatum
O'Neal is so funny. Filmed in
comforting black - and - white,
Moon is the story of a pair uf
Bible-faking con artists during
the depression who are just try-
ing to make ends meet by sell-

ing "personalized" Holy Books
to recently widowed countryfolk
at reduced rates.
Starring Ryan O'Neal as
Moses and featuring his daugh-
ter Tatum as Addie Pray, Mad-
eline Kahn, and the hysterically
brooding P. J. Jones as a
black "maid", Moon is quite
simply good, clean fun with
some crazy-pops Depression-era
music thrown in for periodic
Peter Bogdanovich directed it
all with a feel for the wasted,
tumbleweeds feeling his, cine-
matography conveys. O'Neal is
okay when he isn't trying to act,
but see if you can take your
eyes off that precocious little
brat called Addie for even a
moment. Tatum is a delight and
a joy.
Johnny Tough
Johnny Tough is the latest in
a long line of black exploitation
thrillers that truly stink in
terms of any cinematic poten-
tial. This one is basically about
a young kid, 13 or 14, who goes
around beating on everybody.
These kind of movies offer
nothing in the way of enter-
tainment, excitement, sadness,
laughter - all they do is
breathe. The dialoee always
sounds like those dubbed Ital-
ian snectacle jobs, and the
photography on most 7-up TV
commercials is twice as good as
the technical handiwork on this
The one thing Johnny Tough
has is guts. It takes real cour-
age to make slop like this.
If you have absolutely nothing
to do one afternoon, go and see
Johnny Tough. But, in all ser-
iousness, I'd drink a fifth of
straight whisky first.
Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby is the kind

of film that really makes me
want to hate Hollywood.
David Merrick's first film is
a real piece of garbage, mutilat-
ing the quiet F. Scott Fitzgerald
Gatsby stars Robert Redford
and Mia Farrow in what has to
be one of the all-time bombs
ever released in the midst of
so much pre-distribution public-
ity. Everything glitters in this
film, except the acting. Every-
body talks like the whole world
was listening, and it all comes
out sounding so wooden and aw-
ful you feel embarrassed after
the first 15 minutes.
The costumes and period cars
and clothing are all there (the
money had to go somewhere),
but anyone can look good in a
tuxedo. Bruce Dern and Karen
Black are fairly effective as Tom
Buchanan and Myrtle Wilson,
but forget about the rest of the
cast. After an hour you'll be so
bored it might be wise to take
the book along and maybe read
a little in the dark.
The Candidate
The Movies, Briarwood
The Candidate is a fairly in-
teresting tale of political be-
hind-the-scenes wheeling a n d
dealing with Robert Redford in
the title role as an up-and-com-
ing possible senator if the right
chips fall in the right places on
election night.
There's a lot of stimuli in this
film, and that's what keeps it
going: Melvyn Douglas has a
bit part playing Redford's fa-
ther, a crusty old former gover-
nor who steals scenes every
time he's on the screen. Peter
Boyle is great as the tough
campaign manager, a ruthless
and balding neurotic who mani-
pulates people like so many pup-
Michael Ritchie directed, as
in Downhill Racer, with 2harac-

teristic unsentimentality. Ritch-
ie knows what he's doing be-
cause he was media adviser to
Senator John Tunney during
that political celebrity's 1968
underdog campaign against
George Murphy. Consequently,
the film achieves a hard-edged
reality unequaled in most semi-
documentary studies of political
Of course, after it's all over,
you still know Robert Redford
didn't really win anything. But
it's fun believing that for a lit-
tle while.
Thunderbolt and
The Movies, Briarwood
Thunderbolt and Lightfoot is
not half as bad as it sounds.
Clint Eastwood breaks down a
little and smiles in this one, and
there's Jeff Bridges giving a
dynamite performance as the
crazy, doomed Lightfoot who'll
do anything once if it means
kicks. The two get together
with George Kennedy (who has
smoothed out his characteristic
bad-guy performance into a
thoroughly enjoyable piece of
fine and smug acting) and de-
cide to hit the Montana Armory
for the second time in five
The robbery itself, an over-
blown suspense-shocker utilizing
a cannon stolen" from the U.S.
Government, is secondary to the
wisecracking fun-loving trio's
sense of ambition and ego.
Some of the scenes are out-
rageously funny, like Bridges
dressed up in drag to attract
a male Western Union operator,
but the plot gets sentimental
towards the close when East-
wood and Bridges realize they
are true friends in the sudsiest
sense of the word.
Watch George Kennedy get al-
lergy attacks in the middle of

an assassination attempt a n d
try not to keep from splitting
your sides laughing. He's come
a long way since Cool Hand
Luke and new director-writer
Michael Cimino knows this. Ken-
nedy ends up the star of the
picture, beating Bridges to a
bloody pulp in the end so Jeff
can act out the death scene he
perfected so well in John Hus-
ton's Fat City.
Thunderbolt and Lightfoot may
have a lousy title, but it's ac-
tually pretty neat.
La Strada
Cinema Guild, Arch. Aud.
Sat., 7:30, 9:30
La Strada (1956) is a tortuous-
ly slow, moody, and unrelenting
tale of sorrow and pity between
a performnig circus-like strong-
man on the road and a pathetic
blonde, slowv-witted and dumb-
footed, that he takes in more
out of boredom than compas-
sion. Her kindness to him, re-
paid only by belched insults,
leads to a strong unrecognized
love that can only fail and fail
Anthony Quinn is simply mar-
velous as the monster who
breaks chains with his chest.
Giulette Masina, Mrs. Fellini
in real life, gives a typically
tragic performance that is by
now a standard heartbreaker.
Richard Baseheart also stars as
the fool who tries to make the
strongman pay for being so in-
different to poor Giulette.
Bashhart's goading insults and
practical jokes spark what little
humour is present in La Strada;
for the most part be prepared
for several tears and a lot of
restless, itchy dialogue that is
surprisingly effective.
This -week's Cinema Week
end column was prepared by
Daily staff writer Michael Wil-

Anthony Newman, Festival Chorus:
Skilled keyboard, bland Schubert

Last Wednesday evening in Hill Aud-
itorium, Anthony Newman gave a Bach
recital on both organ and harpsichord, in
which he displayed some of the best
and the worst features of recent Bach
Newman is not a purist and avoids us-
ing musicological literalness as an ex-
cuse for lack of musical understanding.
He is, in fact, a remarkable virtuoso on
both instruments, and provided some in-
teresting diversion through his skill, par-
ticularly in the "Wedge" Fugue and the
D Major Prelude.
Unfortunately, Newman is unwilling
to take the final step toward musical
virtuosity and subjugate his own per-
sonality so that what is interesting in
the music can emerge. As a result,
throughout the evening we heard him
imposing a variety of patterns on the
music, none of which were as interest-
ing. as what was in the music to begin
Newman's harpsichord playing was
marred frequently by rhythmic problems,
such as the romanticized distortion he
imposed on the D minor Fugue subject.
Some tempos seemed inappropriately
chosen and prevented the music from
unfolding clearly. His articulations,
which were limited to a sustained roman-
tic sound, tended to muddy the texture,
and, as a result, one often could not
hear inner voices or the bass. -
Bach on the organ in Hill is problem-

sound. His registrations were not chosen
with an eye toward clarity of texture,
but rather in an attempt to build a
timbral progression towards a final co-
lossal cadence.
By the end of the Passacaglia, for ex-
ample, so many- of the organ's "big
guns" were in use, especially in the
pedals, that one could hear only a fuzzy
pitchless roar. In general, however, his
organ playing was highly spirited and
enthusiastic, though occasionally marred
by the same rhythmic peculiarities found
in his harpsichord playing.
The University Choral Union's Festival
Chorus completed Wednesday's p r o-
gram with an attempt (futile from the
start) to provide "salon"-style entertain-
ment with ten Schubert part-songs, sung
by a 75-member chorus, in Hill Audi-
torium, which is no "salon" by anyone's
Their performances were enthusiastic
and seemed well-rehearsed, even though
the music which emerged ws rather
featurless and bland. Although they at-
tmpted subtleties of phrasing and en-
semble, the number of singers on each
part, as well as the lack of precise
rhythmic direction, obscured any special
qualities which one might have expected
in the music, and made these simple and
charming Schubert songs seem more
like a cross between the German Re-
qulem and Orff's Carmina Burana.
Life would be much easier for the

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