Wednesday, January 27, 1988
The Michigan Daily
By Scott Collins
I am, to quote Peter Finch's
character in Network, mad as hell,
and I'm not going to take it any-
more. I've suffered through more
than my fair share of films at Ann
Arbor's absolutely, positively worst
theatre, and after my most recent en-
counter with its inept management, I
encourage all film lovers to boycott
the State Theatre, located at the cor-
ner of Liberty and State, in the heart
of "campustown." Herewith I present
a list of 19 reasons to avoid going to
the State on your next date:
1. The management is too
damned lazy and ornery to get to the
theatre a couple of hours before
opening to give me a screening of
Surf Nazis Must Die.
2. It is the only area theatre that
has refused to grant passes to Daily
3. Every time I've been there the
manager seems to have all the tact
and diplomacy of Jimmy the Greek.
He also looks like he gets his hair
cut by student barbers.
4. It is owned by the George
Kerasotes Corporation, a big, fat,
stinking cineplex chain. Fuck those
5. Its profits are based on the
capitalist exploitation of its workers.
(And it fits easily into a chant:
"Hey, hey, ho, ho, fascist State has
got to go!")
6. Its lobby is a dank, garbage-
strewn memorial to art yeccho.
7. It makes Peter Steiner look
good by comparison.
8. Its once spacious auditorium
has been divided into four vulgar,
oppressively stuffy corrals. Patrons
of the upstairs "theatres" (what was
once a balcony) frequently emerge
with b.o. and painful cricks in their
9. The marquee is crowded and
10. Boycotting the State gives
activists a cause to believe in.
11. Most of its films are so bad
the airlines won't dare book them,
even on flights returning from
12. As we go to press, the "TE"
of its south-facing neon sign is
13. Roland Barthes argues that
the State Theatre is a transcendent
signifier of American corruption.
Look it up - it's in the library.
14. Your parents would probably
15. It sees no distinction between
serious films and le cine garbage.
At the State, My Life as a Dog is
forced to room with Return of the
Smurf with halitosis .
16. Jefferson said the power of
the State is subject to the will of the
17. It sells stale candy at its con-
18. The office is the unmarked
door next to the men's bathroom
upstairs. Maybe that's not a reason,
but now you know where to go for a
refund. Knock loudly.
19. It's taking up space for a
badly needed parking garage.
Does the State
Daily Photo by ELLEN LEVY
provide cinema to the campus
GUESS WHO'S COMING
Professor of Chinese Language
By Meredith McGhan
sive as information about the author
himself, but it promises to be just
as trendsetting as his two others.
The best bet is to check him out in
person tonight and find out for
JAY MCINERNEY speaks at
Rackham Auditorium tonight at 8
p.m. as part of Hillel's Great Writer
Series. Tickets are $5.
Thursday, January 28,1988
East Quad South Cafeteria
Jay McInerney is best known for
his well-received first novel, Bright
Lights, Big City. It was also the
first in the now infamous series of
novels about the wealthy, trendy
lifestyle of young. urban posers and
he packed it with lots of drugs, ca-
sual sex, and a search for meaning
that often leads nowhere.
However, McInerney's depiction
of the Manhattan nightclub scene
and characterization of the protago-
nist makes Bright Lights a much
richer novel than the shallow imita-
tions of the literary brat pack that
McInerney spawned. McInerney's
characterization is both humorous
and poignant, and the second person
narrative style allows the reader to
identify easily with the characters.
McInerney's protagonist goes
through a series of drugged adven-
tures, trying to escape the tragicomic
sadness that lies beneath all his ac-
tions. His wife just left him, his
mother died, and his job is
unrewarding. His increasing
dissatisfaction with his drugged out
lifestyle is evident: "You see your-
self as the kind of guy who appreci-
ates a quiet night at home with a
good book. A little Mozart on the
speakers, a cup of cocoa on the arm
of the chair, slippers on the feet...
walking from subway. to apartment,
you tell yourself that you are going
to suppress this rising dread that
comes upon you when you return
home at night."
From the portrait of Manhattan in
Bright Lights, McInerney went on
to write Ransom, a novel situated in
Japan. The main character teaches
English at a school for businessmen
and after work, attends a martial arts
school. Martial arts eventually over-
takes his life both literally and figu-
ratively, providing for a climactic
ending. The cast of characters in
Ransom is also effective, especially
the expatriot Americans who hang
out at a Western bar.
McInerney next enters the film
realm with an adaptation of Bright
Lights. Information about McIner-
ney's next written project is as elu-
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