The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 17, 1988 --Page 9
BY GREG FERLAND
The end of the recent presidential
eampaign caused many people to.
question the role of the media in its
portrayal of candidates and its power
to influence public opinion. It is not
a coincidence that A Cry In The Dark.
was released three days after the
elections. This film frighteningly ....
captures the unbelievable power of
the press to distort facts for the sake
of a story and at the expense of
people's lives and feelings.
A Cry In The Dark is based on
the novel Evil Angels by John
Hryson, the recounting of a true story Meryl
that began in 1980 when the infant unjusi
daughter of Lindy and Michael Dark.
Chamberlain disappeared during a
4acation to Australia's Ayers Rock.
Lindy swears that the baby was taken "People
by a dingo (an animal akin to a of hun
coyote), but the Australian press and mirror:
public refuse to believe her. What the pub
follows is a witch hunt motivated by at Lind
the public's outraged frenzy.
Director Fred Schepisi (Plenty , Choice
Roxanne ) brilliantly portrays the as as co
press and public as being like the of her
dingo that stole baby Azaria. The she cha
press pounces on Lindy and Michael so con
With extreme measures such as using to thin
helicopters to monitor them, and same p
even taking their picture on the way pencha
to the bathroom. Schepisi also her po
Shows the public at work, at cricket ther wi
matches, and at dinner parties,
discussing the case and swallowing played
as fact the untruths told by the press. He see
At one point, Michael realizes that in kee
BY JOE HELMINSKI
" W e might offend some of the University
professors with what we've done to Moliere's play,"
comments RC senior Louis Charbonneau, director of
the Residential College Players' version of Tar-
tuffe, Moliere's classic story of religious hypocrisy.
This won't be the first time that Tartuffe offends.
Swaggart's real-life sex scandal was an
inspiration for this updated
rendering... it parallels a main theme
of the play - "hypocrisy in the
Christian view of sex."
akle holy hypocrites
values. They chose to set the play not in the days o
the Sun King, but the days of the TV evangelist. -
"Christianity is far above the way people are," says:
Charbonneau, explaining what he sees as one of
Tartuffe's central messages. Religious charlatan Tar2
tuffe, the main character, is a Jimmy Swaggart-type
in the RC production. Swaggart's real-life sex scandal
was an inspiration for this updated rendering
Charbonneau says, as it parallels a main theme of the
play - "hypocrisy in the Christian view of sex." A:
skirt-chaser as well as a religious fake, Tartuffe :
pursues women as zealously as he pretends to pursue
John Marshall heads the casts as Tartuffe. He
appeared in last year's Residential College production
of A Midsummer Night's Dream, as did Kathryn
Remen, who plays Mme. Pernelle, Tartuffe's love (or
is it lust?) interest. Remen is also assistant director.
Stephan Vernier appears as her husband, Orgon, a
devout disciple of Tartuffe. He played in Another
Merry Pickled Herring Play at Ann Arbor's
Renaissance Festival last year. Melissa Hart is
Dorine, and Kristen Hill makes her debut as Elmire:.
Hart was also in A Midsummer Night's Dream.
Tartuffe is RC senior Louis Charbonneau's sixth RC
directing job; his last was Harold Pinter's The Room.
Although the Players left Moliere's original
structure intact, the Players added a subplot to em-
phasize minor characters in this production. Charbon-
neau edited the dialogue for greater impact, and redid
"scenes with structural flaws." He hopes the changes
will enhance the play's wit: "We've tried to make it
as funny as possible."
TAR TUFFE will be performed Thursday and Friday at
8 p.m., Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m., and Sunday at 2
p.m. at the Residential College Auditorium in East.
Quad. Tickets are $3 for students and seniors.
Streep goes Down Under and turns up as a mother
tly accused of her child's disappearance in A Cry in the
e can turn on you like a pack
ngry animals" and Schepisi
s this comment by showing
blic as they bark like dingoes
[eryl (Silkwood, Sophie's
) Streep's portrayal of Lindy
onsistently stunning as the rest
work. Like Robert De Niro,
nges her appearance and accent
vincingly that it is impossible
k of Lindy and Meryl as the
erson. Streep has always had a
nt for accents and here it helps
rtray a strong Australian mo-
th undeniable authenticity.
Lindy's husband Michael is
by English actor Sam Neill.
ms stilted at first, but this is
ping with his character - a
for the Seventh Day Adven-
iho believes in the second
g of Christ. As the film pro-
s, he is allowed to develop and
ally he becomes slightly
ed" because of the constant
pressure; this eventually
him to question his faith.
aith is another interesting
to the film as the Cham-
s use it to carry them through
eal of losing their daughter and
blic hatred that follows - the
finds them inhuman for not
he latter half of the film is a
ng courtroom drama. The
of the witch hunt is height-
ened when the lawyers and the jury ae"k
embrace lies, and even evidence from a "k
clairvoyants; as fact. In a clever centu
sequence, the press is shown sitting
down at their typewriters just as the B
jury files in with their verdict; off.
Schepisi is signifying that in today's have
world, the press has the power to are
define guilt or innocence. This in-
credible story would be absurd - as
Lindy sometimes sees it - if it were
not true and had not happened only
eight years ago.
However, the ending of the film
is particularly satisfying as the
Chamberlains take some revenge
against the press by filing lawsuits
to clear their name - lawsuits that Ia
are still continuing today. They want
to make sure that what happened to If My
them "does not happen to another Could
Australian ever again." Ironically, the Polygra
press used this same reasoning to get In I
interviews from the Chamberlains -- tors p
under the pretense of caring, the grinni
reporters wanted to ensure that a child Aaron
would never be killed by a dingo Brothe
ouis XIV's France, authorities forced Moliere to
ge the play's ending, which evidently was less
complimentary to the powers that were. This
nal conclusion has been lost, however, and what
ains is a finish which, in Charbonneau's words, is
kiss-ass" to French royalty of the early 18th
But the RC Players picked up where Moliere left
Working for the last two and a half months, they
e rewritten and modernized the work. Characters
altered now to correspond with contemporary
p rprpr rp
See Me Now
van Neville's case, his ances-
robably are looking on and
ng with pride, especially Dad.
Neville and the Neville
rs Band are a music institution
w Orleans - Bayou R&B's
alent of the Jackson 5, only
r. Ivan's solo debut is as
and soulful as should be ex-
given the raw genetic material
to work with. With any luck,
Ancestors Could See Me Now
be the big hit that his ances-
tors never had.
While the Neville Brothers re-
main strict traditionalists, relying on
no more than a nitroglycerin rhythm
section and Aaron's archangelic tenor,
to do what they have to do, the new
generation of Neville isn't afraid to'
embrace modern technology. Danny
production wraps the songs up in
shimmering, radio-ready packages.
"Not Just Another Girl" and
"Primitive Man," are the most
obvious choices for singles, but ev-
ery cut is just smooth enough, just
raucous enough to sound right on
the Fiero stereo.
Ivan isn't blessed with the golden
vocal chords of his father, yet his
singing, oddly, bears a closer resem-
blance to white soul fathers Daryl
Hall and Huey Lewis. But he delivt
ers the songs with a fervor and effort
that Hall and Lewis lost years ag.
The tunes are simple, hummable,
and direct like the best pop music. In
due time, his voice will no doubt
mature into a subtler instrument and
his songwriting will branch out and
strive for more than the simple
urge/verge rhymes. But for now, red
lax and enjoy the young and enor-
mously talented Ivan Neville.
A Cry In The Dark could also be
a part of the Chamberlain's revenge.
It should successfully turn the public
to their side and could play an active
role in making sure that this media
witch hunt does not happen to
anotherperson ever again.
A CRY IN THE DARK is playing at
the Showcase Cinemas.
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