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March 10, 1987 - Image 5

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The Michigan Daily, 1987-03-10

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ARTS
Tuesday, March 10, 1987

The Michigan Daily

Page 5

The 16mm Festival goes for the silver

By John Shea
The Ann Arbor Film Festival, a festival with as
rich a past as promising a future, kicks-off its silver
anniversary run at the Michigan Theatre today. What
started as a forum to exhibit the work of local
filmmakers back in 1963 has grown into the oldest
and most prestigious 16mm festival in North Am -
erca. Promising young filmmakers from across the
country point to, Ann Arbor as the place to best
display their talents.
This year, over 250 entries have been submitted
for the festival's 25tH 'run, and festival director
Annette Wilson, along with a five-member screening
committee, will view them all before choosing the
80-100 films that will be shown during the week.
There are 30 hours of programming, running from
today through Sunday, when the winning films of the
festival will be shown. Part of the appeal of the Ann
Arbor. Film Festival is that whatever you're looking
for - whether it be animation or narrative, docu-
mentary or abstract - you're sure to find it. Three,
two hour shows are scheduled daily, with a variety of
genres offered. Go to any one show this week, and
among the films you might see there are:
I Dare Ya, a five minute narrative by Rik Joel
Cirter of Paramount, California. Two young girls
dare a boy to walk up to a weather-beaten "haunted
house" and ring the doorbell. The boy is reluctant, as
most young boys are, but after his manhood is called
into question, he makes the trip up to the house. I
became more suspicious than frightened in watching I
Dare Ya, as it seemed to be a long advertisement for
Nike, Guess and Sony instead of a scary short. Except
fo'r the twist ending, there's nothing exceptional here;
it's simple filmmaking on an elementary level.
Solitarire's Sanctuary is an excellent animation
piece by Karen Kiser of San Francisco. The focus of

the six-minute film is on a bird, who, with every step
he takes, draws a line which defines his very bound-
aries. Realizing he's drawing himself into a box, he
attempts to escape by poking his head out of the box
and into the real world, where he's persecuted by both
man and animals. Kiser's use of stark lines and the
contrast between the quiet "sanctuary" which the bird
ultimately becomes content with and the real world
from which he's escaping is stunning.
One thing that has changed since 1963
is the broadening field of international
filmh nakers...Entries have been
received from Germany, New Zealand,
Italy and Ethiopia, just to name a few.
The Water Sluice Valve for the Spraying of the
Ball Tank is in the Heat Center. It's as confusing as it
sounds. Part animation, part abstract, this silent short
is from Switzerland's Sebastian Dellers. A piece of
clay undergoes one metamorphosis after another,
changing at a rapid pace; the imagery is incredible.
But for all the furious activity on the screen, there's
no music to match it; it's like watching a Peter
Gabriel video with the volume turned off. And that's
not bad for three minutes; the problem with this film
is that it's twelve.
While animation, narrative and abstract films are
well-represented, the genre whose presence is most
felt this year is the documentary; the reason being as
much economic (documentaries are cheaper to make
because of the natural sets) as artistic.
The International Sweethearts of Rhythm tells the
story of an predominately black, all-female band in
the 1940s, transcending the social restrictions of race

and gender through their music. It is a compelling and
ultimately triumphant film because directors Andrea
Weiss and Greta Schiller refuse to let Sweethearts be -
come a sweeping social commentary. Instead, they
focus on the tight bonds between the band members
and what it meant to the members to belong to such a
special group. Sweethearts is documentary at its best.
Three renowed filmmakers will judge the
competition; those films judged the best will be
shown on "Winner's Night," on Sunday. This year's
judges are Karloa Gramann, Europe's foremost experi -
mental filmmaker; Herby Smith, a filmmaker and
director from Kentucky; and Dean Snider, the
cofounder of No Nothing Cinema in San Francisco.
They will award $5000 in prize money, including the
$1000 Berman Award for the "Most Promising
Filmmaker in the Festival."
One thing that has changed since 1963 is the
broadening of the field to international filmmakers;
no longer does the festival have a strictly North
American flavor. Entries have been received from Ger -
many, New Zealand, Italy and Ethiopia, just to name
a few. A special program on experimental cinema in

Germany, hosted by festival judge Gramann, will be
shown on Friday at 3 p.m., with a discussion
afterwards. The showing is free.
Other special showings during the festival week
include a look at judge Dean Snider's seven most
recent 35mm films, which takes place on Wednesday
at 2 p.m. Also, there will be performances by the
dance group, La!, on Friday at 7 p.m. and Mr. B, the
well-known keyboard player, on Saturday at 9 p.m.
Screenings are at 7, 9, and 11 p.m. Tuesday
through Friday, and at 1, 7 and 9 p.m. on Saturday,
with the winners being shown Sunday at 7, 9 and 11
p.m. All showings are at the Michigan Theatre.
The beauty of the Ann Arbor Film Festival lies in
that, while it is evolving into an international
festival, with more blacks and women entering films,
it at the same time remains a local event. Most of the
$5000 in prize money has been donated by Ann Arbor
businesses and private contributions while those who
work for the festival volunteer their time. The Ann
Arbor Film Festival, is, in short, a community
celebration of the art of film presented by those who
love it for those who love it.

Books -
Toll Call
Stephen Greenleaf
Villard Books
$16.95; 311 pages
A perverted phone caller has
threatenend secretary Peggy
Nettleton into revealing her most
intimate secrets in a two month
long late-night session of probing
calls. Psychplogically epslavEd by
her tormentor and emotionally
drained, Peggy collapses at work
and her boss gets on her case -
literally, since her boss is John
Marshall Tanner, private eye.
But will the working
relationship that Nettleton and
Tanner have built up over eight
years survive the things they learn
about each other as Tanner tries to
solve the mystery? Does Peggy
really want the mystery solved?
While Tanner works on this
* close-to-the-heart job, he learns a
thing or two about himself, as well
as about some of Peggy less-than-
savory neighbors. He uncovers a
kidnapping that looks more like a
child pornography session, and
visits the disgusting lair of a petty
sex offender who soon turns
murderer. But still the caller proves
hard to trace - until Peggy strips
for him late at night in a deserted
r playground.
The best surprises come from
Tanner's colleague Ruthie Spring, a
Texan, born and bred, with a crass
sense of humor and a streak of

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honesty a mile-wide.
Toll Call is the latest in
Greenleaf's Tanner mystery series.
Greenleaf has already been ranked
up there with Hammett, Chandler,
and MacDonald for his stylistic
rendering of a San Francisco private
eye. However, Greenleaf rises above
the others with his command of the
comnonents that make the best-

detective stories - sex and
violence, intelligent plots, and wit
and cynicism.
This is by far Greenleaf's best
Tanner mystery, so drop that quarter
into a payphone and make a toll
call to the nearest book store to
reserve your copy.
- Rebecca Cox

MACTRUCK BUYERS-
YOUR SOFTWARE IS HERE!

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ATTENTION ENGINEERING
UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS
1987 Landes Prie Announcement
F
Undergraduate students currently registered in the Engineering College
are eligible to compete for the George M. Landes Prize ($800). This is an award
presented annually to an undergraduate student who demonstrates excellence of
both technical work and the presentation of that work in written or graphic
form. The prize is presented in memory of George M. Landes, a 1977 graduate
of the Mechanical Engineering Department and a Ford Motor Company
engineer who was killed in an automobile accident in 1981.
To enter, a student must submit a single piece of technical work. This
presentation -- written, graphic, or some combination of communication media
-- can be a technical article, a design report, a piece of technical journalism, or
any other presentation of technical work. Submissions will be evaluated for
L. aL F-: t i - 11 TI-i c,'. cii1A hp of nrifPcinna

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WHEN:
WHERE:
WHAT TO
BRING:

Exchange
on March
or March

version 1.05 of Microsoft Word
10-11am to 7pm
11-9am to 5pm

for version 3.0

The Michigan Room,

Second Floor, Michigan League.

Bring the manual for Microsoft Word, version 1.05,
system and backup disks for version 1.05 (2 disks!),
and the Redemption Coupon (letter) from Microsoft
that you received at the sale.
Or, if you've lost the Redemption Coupon:
bring your Mactruck Computer Weekend Sales Receipt
(golden form), your University ID and your Driver's
License (or other picture ID)-in addition to the
manual and disks.

I

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