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March 16, 1985 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1985-03-16

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ARTSPage 5
The Michigan Daily Saturday March 16, 1985 Pg

'The Sure

By Emily Montgomery
A rchie Bunker was wrong. Rob
Reiner is no "meathead." If his
last film, the satirically hilarious.
rockumelitary This is Spinal Tap didn't
convince you, then his latest comedy
The Sure Thing is sure to.
The plot to The Sure Thing is cer-
tainly nothing new. The road trip
romance story has been done many
times before. But with couples like
Clark Gable and Claudette Cobert
before them, the sparkful duo of John
Cusack (Grandview, U.S.A.), as Gib,
and Daphne Zuniga as Allison, is in
good company.
The Sure Thing adds a new twist to
this old standby in that Gib and Allison
are college students. They meet in an
English class taught by a scraggly, old
female professor who, in the middle of
class, feels the need to air her opinion of
each student's literary shortcomings.
Gib teases Alison for taking too many
notes. And Alison smirks back when Gib
is told that the grammar in his papers
is inexcusably bad. They have an im-
mediate and- mutual disliking for each
other, or so it would seem.
Gib actually does show an interest in

Alison, but his hopes are dashed when
he finds she has a boyfriend in Califor-
nia. So Gib turns his attention
elsewhere. His friend at U.C.L.A., Lan-
ce, (Anthony Edward, Revenge of the
Nerds) asks him to 'come visit over
Christmas break with the promise of
supplying not just some female com-
panionship, but a "surething," at that.
With a bikini snapshot of the teen Bo
Derek (Nicollette Sheridan) in his
pocket, Gib sets off to catch a ride west
to meet her.
Gib's' ride pulls up and he plops into
the backseat right next to (who else?)
Alison. She too, is heading for the coast.
She plans to spend break there with her
boyfriend. Thus the road romance finds
its roots, but Reiner and company will
tug us here and there, into one
humorous situation after another,
before these two reach their
The one that that really makes The
Sure Thing is the chemistry between
Cusack and Zuniga. Their characters
are like night and day. Alison is a
studious, incredibly well-organized,
mild-mannered conservative, whose
philosophy of life is that, "spontaneity
has its time and place." Gib, however,
is a crazed lunatic, who knows not

limitations, lives for junkfood and en-
joys "living on the edge." Cusack and
Zuniga establish these characters ef-
fectively, yet not so solidly that they
can't. make the steps towards one
another's world. Their relationship is
believable through all its developmen-
tal stages, from enemies, to friends, to
lovers. This would seem like a basic
notion, yet it's amazing how many films
(Vision Quest for one) fail in this
Reiner pulls a couple of Hitchcocks in
The Sure Thing. During one scene, a
poster of Spinal Tap hangs alludingly
on a back wall, and later in the film
Reiner can be heard narrating a Her-
cules movie sequence on television.
These bits, of course, really don't add to
the film in any respect, I just brought
them up so you could watch for them.
So many youth films today,
especially in the college age group,
either exploit the sexual, T & A aspect
of the story so much that the plot suf-
fers miserably, or are so geared to the
slapstick comedy that the characters
never get a chance to develop. The Sure
Thing has none of these flaws. It is both
enjoyable and believable. Of course, in
reality, there is no such thing as a "sure
thing," but this movie comes close.

seems a sure thing


Gib (John Cusack) and Allison (Daphne Zuniga) are shown here moving into the

friendlier part of their love-hate

-- -,tt.

Local bands engage in combat

Universal comedy

By Jacqueline Raznik
T he scene: Inside a corporate of-
fice building elevator. Each day
a torrent of employees ascends in
this elevator to the respective floors
of their offices, a perfectly mundane,
ritual. Suddenly, somewhere bet-
ween the fifth and !sixth floor, it
-sparks. What is the nature of this un-
foreseen spark? An imminent elec-
trical fire? Not even close. It is the
spark of comedy igniting a com-
monplace circumstance, an elevator
ride. Just ask the "Elevator
.Operator." The Comedy Company
will perform this sketch along with
thirteen others at the University Club
of the Michigan Union this Sunday
night in what promises to be a rip-
roaring Dinner Theater. Cast mem-
bers will perform original material,
bring their brand of off-the-wall and
caustic insight to a melange of
professions, situations, and per-
So what exactly is the Comedy
Company? Former-ly the Sunday
Funnies, the troup was born in 1980
when a few unknown but highly am-
bitious student comics reserved the
ballroom in the Michigan Union for
their momentous unveiling. Not long
after this premiere performance,
the troupe became part of the
University Activities Center, and is
now a recognized showcase of local
comic talent.
"Our aim is not cheap laughs,"
avows producer Jay Beeber. Beeber
has been with the Company for four
years watching the troupe tran-
sform and mature with each year's
influx of new talent. He attests to the
Comedy Company's policy of shying

away from local humor in an effort
to maintain professionalism.'
Political satire is also off limits to
the troupe which prides itself on its
universal appeal. The Comedy
Company has performed beneath a
variety of limelights in the course of
its five year history, evincing this
wide appeal.
So what is the vein of the Comedy
Company's humor? Joel Towers'
one of the new members of the
troupe, calls it "reality with bizarre
twists." He does not consider himself
a comedian, but rather an actor per-
forming in situation comedies.
Towers compares the troupe's style
to an American version of Monty
Python's Flying Circus. Each of the
Comedy Company's sketches in-
volves at least two performers enac-
ting a seemingly mundane situation.
The interaction creates the humor,
not one line gags. Language, wit,
farce, and satire are often employed
to make a social commentary.
The Comedy Company promises
to reveal the comic element in a host
of familiar situations during Sun-
day's performance. You may be
laughing at yourself as these student
performers illustrate what really
transpires "One Night in a Single's
Bar." Other featured sketches im-
clude "Trial & Error" which Beeber
calls "a scathing indictment of the
law profession." Find out how
humor embraces a policeman's
night beat in "Ships in the Night."
An all-you-can-eat Italian buffet will
precede the show, beginning at 5:30
p.m. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. And
remember: you haven't lost
everything until you lose your sense
of humor.

By Jacqueline R aznik
T onight the Michigras festivities
taking place in the Michigan Union
will reach their culmination with some
exciting, decisive combat in the "Battle
of the Bands."
Of the seven bands participating in
last Thursday's and Friday's
preliminaries, the four most talented
will have an opportunity to energize the
U-Club one last time this evening. The
"Battle of the Bands" aims at giving
exposure to aspiring local musicians
and has become an intrinsic part of
Michigras since its conception three
years ago. Bands will compete for a
paid gig at Rick's in early April. Second
and third prizes are gigs at the U-Club
and Soundstage, respectively.
Carolyn Sherman, Chairman of
Special Events for the University Ac-
tivity Center, must be very pleased
with the manifestationof her hard work
in the preliminary competitions. Tony
Colatruglio, lead singer of Alien Nation,
commented, "The preliminaries were
well organized. The bands performed
on schedule. What also impresses me is
the sound quality in the U-Club." Sher-
man expects tonight's zealous finale to
run even more smoothly.
The bands perform one forty-five
minute set, including at least three
original songs. Who are the contenders
in this rhythmic techno-battle? "The
Beginning" pulled out leaving three
bands to vie on Thursday for two places
in tonight's final competition: E-
Mortals, The "Out" Crowd, and En-
tropy. The E-Mortals are reluctant to
classify their sound, but new wave is a
fair assessment of the group's music.
charging the U-Club with their highly
spirited pop/new wave sound, The

"Out" Crowd left the audience dancing
in their seats during the preliminaries.
Entropy considers themselves a cross
between the Talking Heads, INXS, and
King Crimson. Formed only three mon-
ths ago, Entropy proved themselves by
winning a place in tonight's competition
along with The "Out" Crowd.
Friday night the limelight divulged
Pants Then Shoes, Alien Nation, John-
ny Jones and the Phones, and
Somewhere in Sudeten. Pants Then
Shoes boasts an "original", hightech
approach to dance music. Alien Nation
terms their sound "psychopunk" and
performed original material ex-
clusively, with the exception of Joy
Division's "Transmission". The jazzy
rhythm and blues sound of Johnny
Jones and the Phones never fails to ac-
tivate an audience. The final contesting
band is Somewhere in Sudenten, which
labels its music "danceable techno-pop
mixed with a crisp rock-n-rollish
guitar." As we went to press last night,
Support the
March of Dimes

~1 at
lis 1 E MONDAY, MARCH 18:
80 2 MON ROC
48 104
$2 Requested. Proceeds for material aid to Central America
FRIDAY,,MARCH 22: "Women & Peacemaking" Series
RUTH CAREY, Parent, Nurse, Teacher

we were yet uninformed of which of the
bands from this latter group had earned
themselves a spot in tonight's com-
WCBN music directors Gretchen
Lindensmith and Cecile Cloutier, Jim
Ciao of Prism productions, and former
chairman of Soundstage, Dan Segal,

constitute tonight's judging committee.
"The Battle of the Bands;' has received'
an enthusiastic response in the past
because everyone leaves this musical
celebration a winner-bands benefit
from the exposure, while the audience
enjoys the musical deluge of sounds and


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