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September 17, 1987 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1987-09-17

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The Michigan Daily-Thursday, September 17, 1987- Page 9

'Big Easy'

: It's not so easy

By John Shea
The Big Easy, one of the last
summer releases of the season, really
brings home the sights, sounds, and
flavor of New Orleans. But make no
mistake about it; it takes time
getting used to. And it's quite
possible you might prefer another
dish.
In the opening credits, director
James McBride (Woodstock )
assaults us with a "Koyaanisquatsi-
esque" aerial shot of the Bay and the
city, while Brad Fiedel's musical
score - part jazz and part God-
knows-what - pounds through our
heads. This sequence eventually
comes to an end. Then as you nurse
your head trying to regain a sense of
self, you might think about leaving.
Don't do it. The temptation is there,
but don't grab your coat because the
main course is far better than the
appetizer..
Despite all the scenery, the
restaurants, and the atmosphere of

New Orleans, The Big Easy really
cooks with the interaction of stars
Dennis Quaid and Ellen Barkin.
Quaid plays Lieutenant Remy
McSwain, a free-wheeling spirit
who isn't afraid to bend the rules a
little bit. Well, let's face it; he bends
them a lot. Taking protection money
from local merchants, being a bit
more brutal than he has to be in his
arrests, and skimming from the
"Women's and Children's Orphan
Fund," is all in a day's work.
Enter Barkin, who plays Anne
Osborne, the beautiful assistant
district attorney who makes a living
by putting corrupt police officers in
jail. Their two paths cross when
they both investigate the murder of a
gangster, and Barkin learns of
Quaid's "unprofessional behavior."
Barkin and Quaid's conflicting
philosophies on how to conduct
business leads to the inevitable:
Barkin prosecutes Quaid, and he gets
off the hook after a key piece of
evidence is "destroyed." But there are
more important things to worry

about: the death of the gangster is
eventually attributed to a big heroin
deal, and it seems that someone from
within the police department is
connected with it.
Despite the interesting premise,
The Big Easy is not as suspenseful
as one might think.We see what is
coming. But that's fine, because
suspense really takes a back-seat to
character development. Barkin and
Quaid, who started out as cliches,
evolve into caring, feeling beings.
As for their physical chemistry;
well, their love-making scenes
approach the eroticism of 9 1/2
Weeks without being pornographic.
And that is no small ac-
complishment.
Barkin is very appealing as the
assistant D.A. Quietly sexy and
unassuming, Barkin manages to
evoke sympathy for her character.
We feel for her and her dilemma as
she must prosecute the man she just

made love to a night earlier. She
proves to have a nice range.
But maybe what sums up The
Big Easy best is Dennis Quaid's
performance. Like the opening
sequence, Quaid storms the screen
with his exaggerated motions and
heavy Southern accent; we laugh at
him. We think it's coat-grabbing
time. But Quaid grows on us, and
then New Orleans, and then the
whole darn thing.
Re u
IAd
Ube

Dennis Quaid (left) stars as a gutsy, free wheeling detective who gets caught
in 'The Big Easy.'

i'I

Records

(continued from Page 8)
Koko Taylor and Her
Blues Machine
Live From Chicago - An
Audience With the Queen
Alligator
Hot. Koko Taylor is at her best
live, and this record is no
exception. One dedicated lady with
one power-packed voice. Eight
classic tunes from the Queen of the
Blues.
-S.F.
Clark Pomeroy
"'Quality of Mercy" /"Midnight Sun"
Stigmata
- Pomeroy is lead guitarist for the
local band Map of the World. He's
put out a solid single that
highlights his taut guitar playing
and strong melodies which make
his tunes very likeable. Pomeroy
has a heavy voice which is balanced
by his light, chiming guitar touch.
-B.F.
Sly and Robbie
Rhythm Killers
Island
Sly and Robbie unload a
murderous barrage of non-stop,
rapid-firing funk that slaughters any
notion of motionless. This diverse
collection of rap, rock, and reggae
is one of the summer's most

innovative releases. With help from
a host of friends like ex-Parliament
funkstar Bootsy Collins, the band
combusts through a cover of the
Ohio Player's "Fire" that scorches
eardrums, burns turntables, and
rages uncontrolably throughout the
entire disc. Have a bucket of water
handy for this one.
-B.B.

HELP WANTED
for
Student Publications Building
Early morning hours - 15 hrs/week
Start Immediately - Work Study welcome
Call 764-0550,
ask for Nancy

UAC / MUSKET presents
MASS MEETING

IF YOU ORDERED
LAST YEAR'S YEARBOOK...
1987 Ensians are still available for pickup at the
Student Publications Building,
420 Maynard, M-F, 8-5.
Bring some form of ID.

THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 17, 8:00 P.M.
PENDLETON ROOM
2ND FLOOR MICHIGAN UNION

All purchased yearbooks
must be claimed by
December31, 1987.

LNSIAN
ALL-CAMPUS YEARBOOK
EST 1897

for more info, call 763-1107

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