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November 18, 1988 - Image 8

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1988-11-18

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Page 8 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, November 18, 1988

Law

of Desire succeeds

BY MARK SHAIMAN
I'll leave it up to the psychologists
to determine what is the real origin of
desire. But whatever this reason is, we
all feel it - so why bother going
backwards when we can go forwards
and explore where desire leads. This
I'll leave this up to the artists.
Pedro Almodovar, in his provoca-
tive movie Law of Desire, shows that
there is more to desire than just
attractions of the flesh. He delves un-
der the skin, revealing the passion
that desire causes. And he does so in
an unconventional way, by frankly
and openly dealing with gay male re-
lationships. This film is done so suc-
cessfully and with such style that it
may help to break down the barrier
that has prevented the screen presence
of non-stereotyped gay males.
The two main characters are brother
and sister, with the twist that they
were once brother and brother. Pablo
(Eusebio Poncela) is a respected film
director, and his sister Tina (Carmen
Maura) is the star of some of his
films. His new project is ehtitled
"Vox Humana" - the Human Voice.
It may be a bit pretentious, but direc-
tor Almodovar, by using this inner-
film title and basing the story around
a filmmaker, is stating that his film
speaks for the people.

have a close relationship, revealing
everything to each other, and thus to
the audience. Most of the times that
they are seen together, Tina is caring
for a young girl whose mother is
eternally away. It is never revealed
whether the girl knows about Tina's
and Pablo's sexual background, but
she has a true love for them both. By
presenting this view of Tina and
Pablo through the innocent eyes of a
child, Almodovar reminds the viewers
that all are innocent until proven
guilty, and guilt, in the case of sexual
orientation, is only in the eye of the
beholder.
Still, Almodovar feels no need to
push his statement, but gently lets it
rest on the storyline. The film is able
to play on the idiosyncrasies of the
characters without being offensive;
what is said about the characters is
said by the characters themselves,
showing that they are able to laugh
along with what life brings them -
another instance of the Vox Humana.
Law of Desire may be just the
voice of Almodovar, who also wrote
the film, but be it alto or bass, it is
the voice of a humanist. It has taken
two years for this Spanish film to
reach the U.S., and if you give it two
hours of your time, it might reach
you too.
Ann Arbor Film Cooperative presents
LAW OF DESIRE Saturday at 7 and
9 p.m. at MLB 3.

a

What would the Vox Humana say about Tina's (Carmen
Maura) precarious positioning?
And the people in his film have lead him. Tina, too, is affected by the
much to speak about. Pablo has two law of desire. She has resigned herself
lovers, one he is separated from and to a life of celibacy, an ironic plight
one he wants to separate himself for someone who is finally comfort-
from. In this triangle, the driving able with her body.
force is desire, and Pablo must look Although Tina and Pablo had been
within to see where his desire will estranged in their youth, they now

r _5

Black Entertainment Series * mrdt
debuts with Rhapsody

BY LISA MAGNINO
IF you look through the gospel sec-
tion of a music store, you expect to
see familiar Black artists like Mahalia
Jackson and Andre Crouch pop up.
No surprise.
But what if jazz artists Lionel
Hampton and Duke Ellington sat side
by side with Jackson and Crouch in
the gospel bin? That could cause a
second look.
But it really shouldn't. Black
artists have traditionally crossed mu-
sical boundaries. Take, for example,
the 1943 recording Black, Brown, and
Beige. Jackson's spiritual vocals
combine with Ellington's jazz in-
strumentals to create one of the most
* famous collaborations in music.

Recognizing that these styles
continually draw upon one another,
and are indivisible, Stephen Newby
and Bill Banfield, the musical com-
posers of tonight's Rhapsody in
Black, have created a program that
combines rap, fusion, traditional
jazz, and gospel into a collage that
celebrates the contributions and
talents of Black artists.
Rhapsody in Black is presented by
Students in Support of Black Enter-
tainment, whose goal is to bring cul-
tural diversity to the bland selection
currently offered in Ann Arbor.
RHAPSODY IN BLACK will be
performed tonight at 8 p.m. in the
Michigan Union Ballroom. Tickets'
are $5 in advance and $6 at the door.'
Appropriate attire is required, and a'
cash bar will be available.

Danzig
Danzig
Def American Records
I'm really sick of hearing people
whine about this album. No, Danzig
(as in ex-Misfit Glenn) is not the
new Misfits. No more than Samhain
was. No more than either of them
should be. Danzig is the potential
these bands should have realized.
Danzig is Danzig. Skull-crushing,
post-metal power with all the
inessential glop drained away.
Danzig continues the progression
out of sloppy hardcore Samhain
started, heading towards a tighter
sound incorporating slower tempoes
and technically concise music. Most
songs on the album are more in the

speed range of "Human Pony Girl,"
from Samhain's November Coming
Fire. They do, however, break out
infrequently into the rapid fury
associated with late Misfits, but even
then Danzig manages to clean up the
sound enough to avoid the swill of
past recordings (i.e., Evilive).
Danzig shows Glenn's retention
of his fascination with Cletic and
Catholic pagan religions, as song
such as "Twist of Cain," "Am I
Demon," and "Evil Thing" make
clear. And backing him up are some
of the most talented musicians
around, including bassist Eerie Von
(ex-Samhain), and drummer Chuck
Biscuits (ex-Black Flag and Circle
Jerks). With this stacked clan of
musicians, we finally get to
experience Glenn's vocal force and
throaty excellence. A monster of a
band behind a monster of a vocalist.
First the Misfits. Then Samhain.
Now Danzig. Evil never dies.
-Robert Flaggert
-Danzig plays tonight at
Harpo's (House of Horror) in Detroit
and tomorrow in Grand Rapids, "The
Home of the Weather-Ball," at
Stadium Arena Annex. Tickets are
available at Ticket-Master.

The Four Elements
By Roz Chast
Harper and Row
$8.95/paperback
A certain sense of humor is at work in this cartoon collection, only
it's hard to tell where it lurks among the unspectacular two-dimensional
scribbles and extensive semi-legible printed captions. Roz Chast draws
from a skewed tongue in her cheek, with a sense of the absurd that in
the same instant recalls Letterman sidekick Paul Shaffer, Charles
Schultz's Linus, Erma Bombeck, and Pee Wee Herman.
Unlike the traditional comic strip format where characters engage in
a dialogue and the final frame contains a punchline, Chast's drawings
are tacked onto the page in no particular narrative order, and the reader is
expected to draw meaning out of hodge-podges of "Overly specific
products" (pain remedies for headaches caused by stuck car alarms) and
fast-food restaurants that "never caught on" (Raisin Hut and Liver Bell.)
Over half of the selection is taken from Chast's work in the New
Yorker, and many of the cartoons betray a Gotham City hipness and
literary mind that only its subscribers might appreciate. In Chast's
world, essays on the learner's permit written test request that you
"Write a sonnet about parallel parking." Banks give "interesting, un-
bourgeois premiums," like Walt Whitman collections and Ornette
Coleman records.
If it amuses you to conceive of Gustave Flaubert's 19th century anti-
heroine as'a tennis pro, this may be the collection for you. But if you
never watch public television, cook with a wok, or worry about your
investment portfolio, stick with Calvin and Hobbes and 'Bloom
County. -Mark Swartz

University of Michigan
SCHOOL OF MUSIC
Sun. Nov. French Classic Organ Series
20 Edward Parmentier, organ
Program includes works by de Grigny and Louis
Couperin
Blanche Anderson Moore Hall, School of Music,
4:00p.m. FREE
Contemporary Directions Ensemble
Richard Rosenberg, director
Jean Pendell, saxophone, Laura Lamport, soprano
Bassett: "Nonet"
Albright: Sonata for Saxophone
Dallapiccola: "Due Liriche de Anachreonte"
Adams: "Shaker Loops"
Rackham Auditorium, 8:00p.m. FREE
For up to date program informationon School of Music events
call the 24-Hour Music Hotline, 7634726

erron.
Continued from Page 7
Her music is unnerving. She
reaches to the core of her audience's
soul and pulls emotion to the surface.
To fully appreciate her gift for con-
necting emotionally, you have to see
Ferron perform in an intimate setting,
(like The Ark). Anyone who has ever
broken up with a lover will find sit-
ting unmoved through the mournful
"Ain't Life a Brook" a challenge.
Ferron's relived pain brings back our
own.
Don't think that the show will be
a downer, though. Her enthusiasm,
genuine warmth, and surprising hu-
mor balances her quiet, introspective

lyrics. She makes fun of herself, has
you laughing, then launches into a
painful, questioning song requiring
sober thought. This manipulation is
part of the Ferron phenomenon. Peo-
ple who like strong songs that elicit
strong responses will get their needs'!
met with Ferron.
FERRON will appear at the Ark
Sunday at 7:30 and 10 p.m. Tickets
are $1050.

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