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February 08, 1980 - Image 7

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1980-02-08

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

'Summer'

The Michigan Daily-Friday, Februarv 8. 1980-Page 7
stays in season

Looking for an
Alternative To Rock or Disco?
WE HAVE IT:
For a fun-filled evening of
music, singing, and good time
Join-TheHAPPY PEOPLE atBIMBO'S
Ever FRIDAY and SATURDAY featuring
,THE GASIGHTERS"
Dixieland and sing-a-long group

By GILLIAN BOLLING
End of summer, by S.N. Behrman,
appears to have all the makings of a
9rdy, dated, boring bit of trivia. The
story concerns the woes of a "poor little
rich girl" and her flirtatious mother set
in a Maine mansion in 1936. For-

tunately, through fine directing and
(with few exceptions) energized acting,
End of Summer becomes a delightfully
enjoyable comedy.
Director Martin Friedman employs a
light-handed humorous- approach which
paid off handsomely. He manages to

avoid falling into the trap of trying to
convey any big message about how
awful it must be to be "rotten with
money". Instead, he presents an array
of personalities mingling and clashing
amidst the trappings of a family which
has remained filthy rich despite the
depression.
TO THEIR credit, director Friedman
and his designers showed a mastery of
details. The play took place over a
period from spring to autumn, finishing
literally and metaphorically with "the
end of summer". Each change of
season precipitates a change in mood
highlighted by the lighting change from
the brilliant golds of spring to the cop-
per glow of fall. Fresh flowers accent
the stage, changing from spring's fresh
daisies to sutumn's chrysanthemums.
Characters subtly changed also,
initially exuberant, only to lose their
vitality and wither as time passes. The
entire production followed the seasonal
pattern with a smooth flow.
The most interesting interpersonal
relationships revolved around the
character of Leonie Frothingham, the
middle-aged heiress who lives her life,
in the singular pursuit of happiness for
herself and those around her. Elizabeth
Jahnke is marvelous as Leonie. She
'embodies all the endearing charm
which is expected in a woman who
believes that "to be in love is to be
alive." Jahnke provides a pivotal
presence which caused the other actors
to display greater confidence in their
interactions with her.
RICHARD PICKREN, as
psychiatrist Kenneth Rice, possesses a.
wicked charm, as he coolly woes both
Leonie and her daughter. Leonie's
daughterm Paula, played by Susan
Titman, has suffered all her life from
comparisons to her mother. Titman
shows her character to be a fine blend
of a spoiled rich brat and a young
woman truly confused by the fact that
wealth is one of her major attractions.
Unfortunately, she chooses to convey

Paula's youthful exuberance by talking
too fast and at times, running from one
side of the room to the other. Her sen-
tences runtogether so quickly that the
meaning seems of secondary impor-
tance to the speed of delivery.
Pat Garner, as Paula's fiance Will
Dexter, has a good stage record with
physical humor, but as Will, Garner
gets a chance to escape his usual bimbo
role. Although he seems a bit stiff on
some of the long, serious speeches, his
Will was believable and sincere.
Lorel Janiszewski does more than
spray her hair gray and don a cane to
portray Paula's aged grandmother,
Louise Wyler; she uses her whole body
to credibly show the aging process in
the family matriarch. David Goldstick,
as college cut-up Dennis McCarthy,
delivers some of the play's most
humorous lines, thankfully toning down
his overly self-aware and smug
delivery as the play progresses.
ALTHOUGH THE production oc-
casionally drifts into verbal one-on-one
ramblings, it is salvaged by the
frequent coming and going of charac-
ters and an overall progressive pace.
End of Summer provides a light,
humorous winter offering in this year's
Showcase Series.
Valuable coupon I
worth $2.24 I
FREEI1
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114 East
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Now Playing at Butterfield Theatres

KWEDNESDAY IS
"BARGAIN DAY"
$1.50 UNTIL 5:30
EXCEPT WAYSIDE

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ADULTS FRI.. SAT.. SUN.
EVE. & HOLIDAYS.. $3.50
MON. THRU THURS.
EVENINGS. . . $3.00
MATINEES UNTIL 5:30
EXCEPT HOLIDAYS... $2.50
CHILDREN 14£8 UNDER. . . $1.50

MONDAY NIGHT IS
"GUEST NIGHT"
Two Adults Admitted
For $3.00
EXCEPT WAYSIDE

HELP
JOHN RRTI IS ON
ANNE ARCHE THE WAY!!
(UPPERM
LEVEL)fg' M u t i
Family Robinson
' Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri at 7:05, 9:30 Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri at 7:00 9:15
Wed, Sat, Sun at WedSat, Sun at
1:05, 3:05, 5:05, 7:05, 9:30 1:00,3:00, 5:00 7:00, 9:15
State 1.2-3.4i4
231 S. State-662-6264-662-5296
Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri at 7:00, 9:15 (UPPER LEVEL)
Wed, Sat, Sunat Mon .Tues. Thurs .Fri 705 930
1:00, 3:00, 5:00, 7:00, 9:15 Wed, S S "Sun"o 305 3:05 705 930
GEORGE SEGAL- NATALIE WOOD
The comedy.
that fools around a lot!
)kdLAST
MARED THE COMEDY THAT
COMES OUT OFT
STHE CLOSET

k

I

Elizabeth Jahnke and Richard Pickern in S. N. Behnman's comedy "End of
Summer", playing tonight and Saturday at the Trueblood Theatre.

r

Jonestown cult rewritten

I

By CHRISTOPHER POTTER
I get, profoundly suspicious when a
creative work is anteriorly condemned
because of the subject it attempts to
hngage. Currently making the
~heatrical rounds -is a film titled
Guyana - Cult of the Damned. "Yec-.
cch!" goes the unanimous public knee-
jerk to this largely unseen opus; "What
kind of perverts would make a movie
like that? What kind of perverts would
go S.t it?"
Thus we morally and patriotically
denounce any attempt to cinematize the
Jonestown massacre, all the while con-
tinuing to plunk down our admission
bucks to gleefully imbibe the varied
*elluloid atrocities of a Nero, a Ghengis
Khan, a Hitler. Does the soothing num-
bness of historical distancing always
produce such ethical and artistic
hypocrisy? Hasn't violence, either sub-
tle or in exremus, been an accepted x-
ingredient in cinema from The Great
Train Robbery right down through
Apocalypse Now?
Though Jonestown remains the most
painful of wounds in our national con-
sciousness, its unique mixture of
orror, guilt and morbid fascination
eventually demands unflinching
scrutiny: This was an incredible story,
a macabre and perhaps unprecedented
footnote to history that will never be
sermonized or sanctioned away.
WHY WOULD a community of nearly
'a thousand people willfully, even
'joyously commit mass suicide simply
'at the command of one person? What
does such an event tell us about the
dark, unexplored recesses of the human
psyche, inaccessible to most, yet fright-
fully responsibe to the twisted touch of
an authoritarian madman? Could any
of us, deprived of our suburban
serenity, remain immune to such cryp-
tic forces confronted by the right en-
vironment, the precise pressures?
Such perplexing questions merit the
most thoughtful study in all forms of
expression, including cinema. Here lies
the material for an extraordinary
motion picture, if handled with in-
telligence and sensitivity; unfor-
tunately Guyana - Cult of the Damned
avoids such civilizing elements like the
plague - it is a graceless, brutish film
fashioned not by sensitive artists but by
hustlers and thugs.
THERE isn't a single moment in this
joint American-Spanish-Panamanian
production (released through Univer-
sal) that betrays the vaguest pretense
of artistry or conscience; Guyana is
exploitation in its purest, most
loathsome form. Under its creators'
churlish ministrations, ritual violence
becomes a ribald temple in which
Jonestown's complex protagonists are
reduced to walking, snarling cartoons
- stick-figure caricatures that the film
doesn't even have the courage to name
(Reverend Jim Jones becomes
Reverend Jim Johnson, Rep. Leo Ryan
is grotesquely tongue-twisted into Lee

into a priggish declaration of
righteousness; he fairly oozes with
nobility, so unctiously radiating his vir-
tue that you keep expecting him to rip
off his shirt to reveal the Superman
costume underneath.
The remaining cast is largely
anonymous enough to avoid enduring
infamy, though it is painful indeed to
watch Joseph Cotton, here completing a
40-year descent from Citizen Kane to
the nadir of phony jungle rot. Of
necessity, though, both performances
and cinematics in general take a back
seat to the obsessions of director-
writer-producer Rene Cardona, Jr.,
whose torture-murder predilections
suggest moviemaking credentials
heretofore limited to snuff films.

SADLY, IT'S our heads-in-the-sand
attitude which allows such cinematic
ordure to surface and fill the void
created by the flight of more respon-
sible artists. Granted, Jonestown
seems an unbearably, agonizingly short
time ago; yet to deny part of our own
history is not only tragic, it can turn ob-
scene in absentia. For as Guyana
illustrates, there's always a vulture out
there somewhere looking for a fast
buck - and history be damned.

II

6

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W sFINAL WEEKI
3020 Menaw 434-1782
Mon, Tue. Thur, Fri 7 & 9
at, Sun, Wed 1-3-5-7.9
Wed adults $1.50 until 2:00(

WHERE c4A 1
EVERY- Q
THING
ENDS..
1979 Wait Oisney Productions

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"1y 11y11T 1 1x 11x_11xIT]'

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A-.AIL -A "

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"A STRUTTING, RAZZMATAZZ
CELEBRATION!"
-. give Byrnes, N.Y.Post

A Rhode Island Feminist
Theater Production (RIFT)
MONDAY, FEB. 11
MICHIGAN UNION BALLROOM-8 PM
TICKETS: $3.50, $5.00/Sliding Scale at Schoolkids' Records, 523 E. Liberty
and Ticket Central, Michigan Union and at the door.
BENEFIT for SAFEHOUSE-
-our local shelter for Battered Women
FOR MORE INFO; 763-5911, 995-3790
Sponsored by National Organization For Women; Viewpoint Lectures, UAC;
Women's Crisis Center, Women in Action
N Ann Arbor Film C oertive Presents at MLB: $1.50
Friday, February 8 TRUFFAUT FEST
THE BRIDE WORE BLACK
(Francois Truff aut, 1968) 7:00-MLB 3
Truffaut is such a rare talent that one knows instantly as soon as the credits
appear on the screen, that this is what movies are about, this is how they can
be done."-NY TIMES. Truffaut's homage to Hitchcock is more than a simple
hymn of praise to the master of suspense, it is a gentle comedy and one of
the few plausible and strange love stories in a long time. Music by BERNARD
(Psycho) HERMANN. Stars JEANNE MOREAU.
FARENHEIT 451
(Francois Truffaut, 1966) 4:00-MLB 3
Truffaut's first film in color and in English boasts a stunning line-up: it's based
on Ray Bradbury's classic study of a totalitarian society in the not-too-distant
future; it stars JULIE CHRISTIE and OSKAR WERNER, the music composed by
BERNARD (Psycho) HERMANN and it features stylish photography by Nicholas
Roeg. "The resultant film is highly original, thought-provoking . . ."-Arthur
Knight.
Tomorrow: FLESH GORDON and FLASH GORDON--PURPLE DEATH FROM
OUTER SPACE at MLB 3 and Bergman's FACE TO FACE at MLB 4
THE DEER HUNTER has been postponed. GET OUT YOUR HANDKERCHIEFS will!
show both Feb. 12 and Feb. 13 at Aud. A.

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\
Music by EUBIE BLAKE
A TOM MALLOW PRODUCTION
FEBRUARY 8-10
Tonight and Saturday at 8pm
Sunday at 2pm & 8pm
POWER CENTER
PROFESSIONAL
THEATRE PROGRAM
TICKETS: TODAY at PTP Ticket Office-
Michigan League 10-1 and 2-5pm or at
Power Center 6-8pm: SATU RDAY at
Power, 1-5 8 6-8pm; SUNDAY at Power,
12-58 6-8pm
INFO: 764-0450 or 763-3333

TONIGHT AT MIDNITE
THE AREA'S FAVORITE
CULT CLASSIC
Ruth Gordon
Bud Cort
Harold
and
Mlaude
His Hangups Are Hilarious!
:State
231 S. Statt - 66
TONIGHT AT MIDNITE
IF YOU LAUGHED AT "LA CAGE"
.TH . THEN CHECK IN TONITE AT
"THE RITZ." A HIDEOUT FOR A
GAY TIME

TONIGHT AT MIDNITE
2-6264
TONITE
AT LE G!
MIDNIGHT T

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