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December 08, 1981 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1981-12-08

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ARTS
*he Michigan Daily Tuesday, December 8, 1981

Page 5

Warren Beatty's 'Reds' perfect

By Richard Campbell
HE BEST movie of the year has
arrived. The movie is Reds and is
destined to not only garner many of this
year's Academy Awards, but to become
one of the most significant films of the
decade.
Reds is a vast, awe-inspiring portrait
of the writer and revolutionary, John
(Jack) Reed. and his wife, Louise
Bryant. The film is a love story and a
historical pageant with the kind of epic
proportions that rarely make it to the
screen. Dr. Zhivago and Lawrence of
Arabia are the only recent movies that
can be compared with the scope and
majesty (not to mention the three and a
half hour length) of Reds.
Director, writer, producer, and star
Warren Beatty, who conceived of
making this film several yeara ago, has
put forth an enormous amount of time
and money into getting his idea onto the
screen.
As a producer, Beatty has assembled
a fantastic array of talent around the
work, including a cast of prodigious ex-

perience and a crew of incomparable
technicians. He took'the effort to build
sets, shoot on location, and work out the
tangled logistical requirements of a
film of this size.k
As a director, Beatty has inspired his
cast and crew to give their best to the
production. All the work put into pre-
production pays off in the realization of
the film. Every dollar spent

(somewhere above $30 million), can be
seen on the screen.
As a co-writer, Beatty (along with
Trevor Griffiths) has fashioned a movie
of unusual depth, exploring not only
Reed's love with Bryant, but also his
radical beliefs. The personal story is
handsomely balanced with the history
of the communist movement in
America, and the Russian Revolution.

Beatty as a star, ultimately is the for-
ce behind the film. With his naturally
charming style, the audience is im-
mediately rooting for his progressive
struggles. Our identification with Reed
See 'REDS', Page 9
If INDIVIDUAL THEATRES
5+n 4,..e flby, ' 76.-40oe

BowWowWow will perform at the Second Chance tonight.
Go ape crazy over
3owWowWow show

By Mark Dighton
ALL THE BowWowWow fans that
A complain that See Jungle! See
Jungle! is nowhere near as incen-
diary as their impact singles are simply
laying elitist ... even if there is a
grain of truth in their objections. But as
an album, See Jungle! See Jungle! is
brilliant, despite its flaws, and no doubt
BowWowWow will be ready to prove
that at Second Chance this evening.
For me, a far more serious charge
that BowowWow must answer is the ac-
cusations of fabrication. As the newest
in a line of Malcolm McLaren fashions
(the most notable recent display being
The Sex Pistols show, which seemed for
a while to be in a state of perpetual
Oreruns), BowWowWow need to dispel
the stench of pre-packaged commercial
plotting that has come to surround their
mentor. But even if one would dare
claim that Bowwowwow's sound & image
are purely calculated, one would also
have to admit that it is a brillaint
calculation.
In Bow WowWow, the best of several.
unrealized musical trends have been
*synthesized into a sound that instantly.
surpasses its inspirations. The double-.
time, plucky bass runs circles around
its Britfunk competitors. The tribal
drumming is integral to the sound, not
just tacked on as with Adam and the An-
ts.
As for the vocalizing of nymphet An-
nabella Lwin ... well, Annabella may
be the sole patentable aspect of
BowWowWow. Certainly, she has a few
predecessors in a similar style (Poly
Styrne of X-Ray Spex comes to mind),
but never before has so fine a singer
been sufficiently confident with her
technique to half-shout so many of her
lines.
To be sure, calling Annabella merely
a "singer" is somewhat limited; her
real mark on this album as a vocalist is
her unmistakeable personality. Her
unquenchable exuberance is like
nothing less than the unreal happy

people that populate TV commercials.
However, the sensuality that she com-
municates and the near-obscenities
that she mouths would certainly count
her out of the cheerleading squad, a
group in which her youthful enthusiasm
would otherwise be more than
welcome.
There's little doubt that Annabella
has won her place in BowWowWow par-
tially due to her youth and the lecherous
potential that affords Svengali
McLaren ("I'm a rock and roll pup-
pet," she admits in this afe of pubescent
sex symbols forced prematurely into a
womanly sexuality), but the distinct
mark of LcLaren's creations is that
their talents are always too vast to be
limited by McLaren's obvious
scheming. Annabella is just that sort of
transcendent personality.
So, even if she is saddled with the
embarrassing "King Kong," she also
gets the chance to strut her stuff on the
joyous war-hoop "(I'm a) TV
Savage."
Jfw the impression so far is that An-
nabella is BowWowWow, I apologize.
Although the musiciansare an equally
essential part of what makes
BowWowWow so undeniable unique,
they come off as nearly faceless on this
disc. The drunmner (Dave Barbarossa)
could be synthetic rhythm box (albeit
with an uncharacteristically African
sensibility), the bass (Leroy Gorman)
could come from any super-funk
session bassist, the male background
chants could enanate from any old Big
Ten backfield. . . almost. Matthew
Ashman's twangy Ventures guitar
sounds lifted from any old spaghetti
western. Despite their shadowy iden-
tities, the players on this record come
across as too unique and powerful to. be
just anybodies.
But we'll have to wait for their show
at Second Chance tonight to see them
put across any personality. But then, of
course, they'll still have to compete
with Annabella. No mean feat there,
boys. You better be up to it.

WARREN BEATTY
DIANE KEATON
s JACK NICHOLSON
MAUREEN STAPLETON
DAILY-8:30
WED-1:00, 4:55, 8:30 (PG)
ADULTS $2.50- :00 p.m.
Show Only
TUESDAY
$ 00ALL SEATS + ALL NIGHTI
S$1.00 (Except "REDS")
LAST 10 DAYS!

Li helknfCh
1AeutnaI
-'Ivo
1981's MOST CRITICALLY
ACCLAIMED ACTRESS ...
MERYL STREEP

4:00 ITRIES ABOUT LOVE
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