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January 21, 1982 - Image 5

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The Michigan Daily, 1982-01-21

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Ajhe Michigan Daily

Thursday, January 21, 1982.

Page 5


_, ,.

A selection of campus film highlights.

(John Boorman, 1981)
This stylish film of the ancient tale
of King Arthur is worth seeing at
least once. It's directed better than a
lot of movies, but it still has room in
it to bore some. Nigel Terry un-
dergoes an impressive transfor-
mation as the King, watched by
Merlin, effortlessly played with
bravura by Nicol Williamson.
(Thursday, Jan. 21; Aud. A, 6:30,
(Peter Brooks, 1967)
Superb performances stock this
bizarre movie about a play (the
assassination of Marat) acted out by
the inmates of an insane asylum, all
under the direction of the Marquis
de Sade. There is some brilliant
photography by David Watkin, com-
plemented by Brooks' direction.
(Jan. 21; Lorch Hall, 7:00, 9:05).

'Machine' breaks down at end

Rebel Without A Cause
(Nicholas Ray, 1955)
Slightly dated now, this film was
considered a gripping social com-
mentary when it premiered.
Starring James Dean in the pivotal
role of the alienated teenager who
finds love in the naivete of Natalie
Wood. (Jan. 21; Michigan Theater,
4!00, 7:00, 9:00).
Pink Panther, A Shot
In the Dark
(Blake Edwards, 1964)
If you're a Pink Panther fanatic
you'll love this double feature.
Sellers puts on his most endearing
character, Inspector Clouseau and
romps through various slapstick
situations. (Jan. 21; Nat. Sci., 7:00).
A Streetcar Named
(Elia Kazan, 1951)
Excellent adaptation of one of the
great stage plays. Marlon Brando
vividly shows you why he garnered
so much praise as an actor. His por-
trayal of the animal Stanley
Kowalski perfectly plays off the
Southern belle of Vivian Leigh. With
Karl Malden and Kim Hunter.
(Friday, Jan. 22; MLB 4, 7:00, 9:15).
Putney Swope
(Robert Downey, 1969)
Wildly irreverent paean to the ad-
vertising industry in general, and
television specifically. Director
Downey (apparently a has-been ad-
man) has funneled his fantasies into
this mad parody and satire and
comedy ... (Jan. 22; Nat. Sci., 7:00).
The Gold Rush
(Charlie Chaplin, 1925)
The Tramp stars in this, his best
feature film. Searching for his for-
tune, and love, Chaplin ends up-in
the Yukon. Some of the more inven-
tive comedy of its time by the
master comedian. (Jan. 22; Lorch
Hall, 7:00, 9:00).
A Day at the Races
(Sam Wood, 1937)
One of the last really good Marx
Brothers films. Groucho, Harpo, and
Chico are involved with a
sanitarium and a racetrack, in that
order. Don't ask any questions, just
listen to the jokes. (Jan. 22; Hut-
chins Hall, 7:00,9:00).

The Last Metro
(Francois Truffaut, 1980)
From the man who brought you
The 400 Blows so long ago, Truffaut
works his simple magic on a simple
story. The problem is the magic is
pretty damn good. It works all the
time. This is a remarkable movie.
(Saturday, Jan. 23; MLB 3, 7:00, 9:30).,
Pretty Baby
(Louis Malle,1978)
Surprisingly tasteful study of a
photographer's obsession with an 11-
year-old prostitute, accurately por-
trayed by Brook "I'll tell my Mom
about you" Shields. Malle's sen-
sitivity and wit combine to make this
film believable and intriguing.
(Saturday, Jan. 23; MLB 4, 7:00,
Breaker Morant
(Bruce Bereford, 1979)
A phenomenal film that captures
setting, plot, and character in a
stylish, fascinating drama. Harry
'Breaker' Morant is an officer in the
Australian volunteers, who is court-
martialed by the British for killing
prisoners. There isn't one bad per-
formance in this gem of a movie
from the now blossoming Australian
film industry. (Jan. 23; Lorch Hall,
(Robert Altman, 1975)
The quintessential Altman film.
Featuring superb acting from the
entire cast, and a far-reaching script
that comments on the American
dream, this film won Oscars galore
for best picture, script, supporting
actor. (Jan. 23; Aud. A, 6:30, 9:15).
(Steve Gordon, 1981)
The commercial success of last
year. Dudley Moore refines his
drunken, short playboy image in the
film that says you can be rich and
nice at the same time. The esteemed
Sir John Gielgud outclasses
everyone as the sublime English
butler. Ignore Liza Mineli. (Jan. 23;
MLB 3, 6:00,8:00, 10:00).
La Strada
(Federico Fellini, 1954)
A stunning realist work that
follows a small circus as its perfor-
mers suffer through their small
lives. And you think you have
problems. (Sunday, Jan. 24; Aud. A,
Citizen Kane
(Orson Welles,1941)
The cliche is, you haven't seen a
movie 'till you see Citizen Kane. The
problem is, the cliche is fairly ac-
curate. Lovers of film simply must
see this movie. Don't spend too
much time looking at all the
technical genius the first time. Let
the brilliantly egocentric perfor-
mance of Welles as Kane capture
you. (Jan. 24; Michigan Theater,
Alphaville, The Weekend
(Jean-Luc Godard, 1965, 1967)
This Godard double feature sup-
plies some of the best of this
enigmatic, bizarre filmmaker. The
films are completely unconnec-
ted-Alphaville deals with a possible
future, The Weekend with our
materialistic, consumer-oriented
society-but still combine to present

a comprehensive view of our times.
(Wednesday, Jan. 27; Aud. A;
Alphaville 7:00, The Weekend 9:00).

By Richard Campbell
N OT EVERY movie has to have dep-
th, or the sophistication of a Chekov
play: It is good for some movies to be
frivolous. Burt Reynolds seems to have
taken it upon his shoulders to make en-
tertaining, slapstick films. And
Sharkey's Machine is almost a good.
example of a free-wheeling, hard-
hitting, shoot-em-up, cops and robbers
picture: Almost.
About two-thirds of the way through
the picture Reynolds-the direc-
tor- starts making mistakes. Ordinarily
this type of film wouldn't require an
analysis of exactly how and why it fails,
but Sharkey's Machine, believe it or

relative security and cleanliness of his
office and head down the stairs for the
squalid, dangerous squad room.
Vice is composed of guys who have
little ambition, are waiting for their
pensions, and spend their time busting
the occasional prostitute or drug
dealer. Sharkey obviously is not going
to fit in-but he tries. Reynolds perfor-
ms the impressive task of bringing his
fellow officers to life. We are not
treated to a series of stereotypes; each
person has a defined character. Brian
Keith, Charles Durning, and the other
members are extremely likeable
because of their vivid charac-
About halfway through the film, these
and other people coalesce to form a

Reynolds has also managed to infuse
the film with a very flashy, Las Vegas,t
pinballish style. There are plenty of
night-time lighted chrome aerial shots
with brassy Doc Severinson musicI
backing it up. It is impossible to tell if
Reynolds thought that up by himself or
whether the editor and sound editor
dreamed it up to save the picture. In
any case it works.
The best part of the film is a montage
sequence where Sharkey has a woman
under surveillance. The electronic bugs
in her apartment constantly emit the
"Funny Valentine" songs that she
plays nonstop, and we see Sharkey go
sleepless, meshing his lonely vigil with
her life. It is a nice couple of minutes, if
you can stand the song.
So much for what Reynolds has done
right. Like I said, Sharkey's Machine is
two-thirds of a good movie, now is the
time to bring up the stuff that is handled
Though the character of the machine
is well developed, Reynolds sometimes,
uses it gratuitously. For one scene,
Charles Durning gets to yell at Sharkey
and his crew because they are not
telling him what is going on. Again, its a
nice scene, but it takes place on an em-
pty bench near the foul line at the -
Atlanta Braves baseball stadium. No
reasons are given for this location,
nobody explains why they decided to
assemble there. The Atlanta Film
Commission probably convinced
Reynolds to use it just to get it in the
film, for whatever reason. It's no big
deal, but watching the scene makes one
wonder what purpose the setting ser-
To top off the misuse of the machine,
Reynolds allows almost every member
of it to be killed off. It is a real shame to
see this happen because you have
grown to like each human being as an
individual. The deaths are pointless.
Reynolds could easily have accom-
plished the trivial rewriting necessary
to allow the men to live.
It is in this section of the film that
Reynolds lost all sight of the style he
had created for the film. The final forty-
minutes of the film bear little or no
relation to the preceding hour. All con-
cepts of plotting, character and setting
are thrown out the window.
The last shot in the film exemplifies
the problems of the second half of the
film. The take starts with a shot of
Homemade soup and sandwich $1.00
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Service Committee:
GUILD HOUSE-802 Monroe



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Sharkey and Domino (Rachel Ward),
the girl he has been following and has
fallen in love with, playing on a tire
swing. The camera, mounted on a
helicopter, zooms out, and flies over the
rooftops of Atlanta. The shot finally
rests on the view of a boarded up win-
dow, through which a man, whom
Sharkey killed, fell. The meaning of the
shot is that the characters in the film
are fun, but the plotting, and the chase
are more important.
Reynolds should have realized that
the characters in his film'were far more
successful than any plot could be. His
choice for the closing shot is symbolic
of how the story overshadows the
characters. Reynolds has come close to
creating a good picture, but he should,
have more confidence in his charac-
ters. Close, but no cigar.

Burt Reynolds

not, has a strong enough opening that
the final letdown in plotting demands
more than just the critical put-down.
Reynolds plays the role of Sharkey, a
rough and ready detective sent down to
work on the vice squad for disciplinary
reasons. We see Reynolds leave the

machine (supposedly police jargon for
a detectives informal group of officers
who work together as a team).
Sharkey's machine includes his
superior, a medical examiner etc. It is
a very good idea for a movie, and
Reynolds has handled it well.

Go get e
MILWAUKEE (AP)-Punk rock
singer Wendy O. Williams, saying she
was a victim of a "pervasive climate of
brutality" by Milwaukee police, filed a
multimillion-dollar lawsuit against of-
ficers who arrested her for an allegedly
obscene performance a year ago.
The lead singer, of the Plasmatics
said she was beaten and sexually
assaulted by officers outside the Palms
nightclub Jan. 19, 1981.
"Today marks the first anniversary
of a night in my life that I will never
forget," Ms. Williams, 32, said
She was arrested for violating a city
ordinance by making obscene motions
while performing. The charge later was
dropped, as were charges of battery to
an officer and resisting an officer.
A jury found her manager, Rod
Swenson, 36, innocent last June on a
charge of resisting an officer.
Attorney Peter Donohue, represen-
ting Ms. Williams, Swenson and two

nWe nd
other members of the Plasmataics,
said the suit seeks "about $4 million to
$5 million" and names seven officers,
plus unknown officers involved in the
Ms. Williams wore her familiar
Mohawk haircut with blond sides and
an orange stripe across her head as she
told how she was "taken out to the back
of the Palms nightclub and sexually
assaulted and beaten by members of
the Milwaukee Police Department."
She said she suffered a broken nose
and a cut above the eye, while Swenson
was beaten "into semiconsciousness."
Ms. Williams cited the cases of Er-
nest Lacy, a 22-year-old black man
whose death in police custody last July
has led to reckless homicide charges
against two officers, and to James
Schoemperlen, a businessman who
alleges police beat him during an arrest
in October.
Three officers pleaded innocent Mon-
day to charges of aggravated battery
and misconduct in office in that case.

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