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January 10, 1994 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-01-10

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8 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, January 10, 1994

Michael Crichton
Writing about extraordinary situ-
ations into which ordinary people are
thrown is nothing new for Michael
Crichton. Nor is it new ground for a
conspiracy to lurk behind the tough
situations which his protagonists must
face. And with the controversy sur-
rounding his "Rising Sun" over the
past couple of years, Crichton should
be old hat at the heat he will take for
his latest novel, "Disclosure."
Crichton's tale focuses on Tom
Sanders, a 41 year old department
head in the computer industry. Sand-
ers is a modern-day Clark Kent, so
mild-mannered that when a promo-
tion everyone assumed he would re-
ceive goes to Meredith Johnson, his
old girlfriend , he never shows any
signs of anxiety. When she sets up an
after work meeting, her agenda in-
cludes more than just business. When
she is rejected, she swears, "I'll
fucking kill you for this."
Sanders tries to continue work as
normal, but Johnson has complained
to the company's legal consul about
sexual harassment, and Sanders is told
he'll be transferred away from the
division which will go public on the
exchange and make its employees
rich and to a new one about to be sold

Because the company is merging
with a large publisher, Sanders de-
cides he has to take the initiative, and
threatens a suit of sexual harassment.
From then on, nothing seems to go as
planned, and Sanders is faced with a
problem much larger than sexual ha-
The issue of sexual harassment,
especially as Crichton has told it, is
bound to be fodder for talk shows for
the next month. Based on a true event,
Crichton has taken great care in re-
searching his fiction, as he does in all
his novels. He effectively talks about
"the system," not in a patriarchal con-
text, but rather in the terms that "sexual
harassment is about power, and so is
the company's resistance to dealing
with it. Power protects power."
The fact that the victim is male
may anger readers. Only five percent
of sexual harassment complaints are
brought by men against women. How-
ever, as Sander's lawyers tell him,"But
then, only five percent of corporate
supervisors are women. So the fig-
ures suggest that women executives
harass men in the same proportion as
men harass women." The author sug-
gests that the increase in the number
of women in power positions paral-
lels the increasing number of harass-
ment complaints filed against women.
Throughout the novel, the gender
roles are reversed. Sanders finds he

Whoopi Goldberg is back as Sister Mary Clarence, but boy does this movie stink!

Sequel needs to kick habit

Only once upon a century does one stumble across
brilliance in the form of a sequel as awe-inspiring as the
original. A film so inventive, so nouveau , that it dares
each one of us to question that which we thought we knew;
namely, whether or not the first one was really as good as
we remember it. A film so bereft of any flaws that it more
Sister Act 2: Back in the
Directed by Bill Duke; written by James Orr, Jim
Cruickshank and Judi Ann Mason; with Whoopi
resembles the fine craftsmanship of a tenacious artisan
than the end product of a filmmaker's tremulous journey.
"Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit" is not that film.
To be fair, I did say that this can only happen once a
century. Since "The Godfather 2" already did it in 1974,
"Sister Act 2" had the odds against it. But really, this is no
excuse. In fact, there is no excuse for why this film was
even made. Well, none other than the fact that the first one
made a whole lot more of the green stuff than anyone
could have imagined. Then again, this is always the reason
for a sequel.
I mean, does anyone want to see those same oh-so-
lovablenuns from the first film kicking up their feet to the
biblical versions of all of our favorite rockin' '50's tunes
again? Of course not. Not even the producers wanted that.
That's why this time they hired the Stage Kids From Hell.
Yes, that's right. It's every stage parent's wet dream. A
whole troupe of incredible kids with that incredible triple
threat. They sing! They dance! They act! That is if you
consider hamming it up for the camera in a supposedly
naturalistic way, a la Macaulay Culkin or any bad John

Hughes film, acting. What's even better is that they're
non-caucasions from broken homes. How P.C.!
Once again, the sisters of St. Catherine's convent have
gotten in way over their heads and require the expertise of
Las Vegas lounge singer extraordinaire Deloris Van Cartier
(Whoopi Goldberg) to bail them out. They've been trying
to supervise an inner city Catholic school in San Fran-
cisco, but the rowdy teenage students have nearly de-
clared anarchy. It's only when Deloris, disguised as Sister
Mary Clarence, takes over the chores of choir mistress and
installs a tough, but fun regime, that the kids finally come
together, learning diligence, responsibility and other im-
portant things. How heartwarming.
This film is just too precious for its own good. Yeah,
they're street kids, but they sure don't seem to spend too
much time on the streets. The only really bad thing that
they've got going against them is their attitudes. Although
not for long, as they are all almost immediately toned
down by the apparantly way cool presence of Sister Mary
Clarence, who appears to be the source of a whole plethora
of personal improvements. Will "Sister Act 3: Can't kick
that habit!" find her in a jail cell, teaching "Love Is All
Around" to prisoners?
She's just so cool, so instantly accepted and loved by
the students that one boy even refers to her and the other
nuns as "his homegirls." How convenient. It's just so
much easier to teach when you've got a bunch of giddily
eager, custom-made "street kids" for students instead of
the kind that you might actually find on a street. One can
only wonder what would have happened if this film had
been distributed by, say, Fine Line, instead of Disney.
What then would our good sister Mary Clarence say to her
far less congenial and possibly armed bunch of students,
one that included a dealer, a cokehead and an unwed
SSTER ACT 2: BACK IN THE HABIT is playing at

Continued from page 5
jazzy comping proves his proficiency,
despite the limitations of playing
through second-hand technology. The
other dampened lead-guitars spin ten-
der and contemplative melodies, with
a host of percussive support pushing
the polyrhythms.
The guitarists reveal the Ameri-
can influences on African highlife.
Hear blues licks, the Royal Brothers'
off-color slides, and even a straight
lifting of the "Johnny B. Goode" gui-
tar intro in Akampi's "Meremma bio."
But the mostly mellow melodies
allude to the tragic topics of these

tunes. Titles like "No Place to Hide,"
"We Will Perish for Nothing" and
"Don't Commit Suicide Because of
Poverty" convey the serious messages
behind these dance rhythms.
The few vinyl crackles on this
digital recording testify to the histori-
cal validity of these tunes. These 45s
were liberally spun in Africa, and
now it's our turn to listen.
- Chris Wyrod
Various Artists
The Beavis and Butt-Head
I wonder if Beavis and Butt-Head
creator Mike Judge knew that his big-

has opposition everywhere, from a
feminist reporter ("What's the big
deal? Men have been doing that for
hundreds of years.") to male friends
in the company ("And now you tell
me you didn't know what was coming
in that office? Fuck you, Tom.").
But behind all the issue-related
material which makes one think, there
is a fine mystery behind it. As in
"Rising Sun," the issue's controversy
may overshadow the fine tale Crichton
creates, making the next move al-
ways unclear, but never creating any
unbelievable plot twists. Crichtons
view of the American firm, and how it
runs is identical to the view expressed
in "Rising Sun" - the company be-
fore the individuals.
With his background in films
(other than writing, he has directed
such films as "Coma" and
"Westworld"), Crichton has written
the book like a film, setting the book
over only a few days, and making
each "chapter" a separate scene. With
the rights to the film already sold, we
may soon see Tom Hanks face off
with Sharon Stone. Since Crichton's
track record of movie adaptaton*
show his tales losing something in
their translation to the screen, it may
be safe to advise all that this book
should not be missed. Catch it before
Hollywood redoes it.
- John R. Rybock
gest audience would be the same
moronic high school metalheads that
the show is satirizing. They will mos
likely be the group that buys the mos*
copies of "The Beavis and Butt-Head
Experience," a collection of songs by
artists that "rock" and "rule." With
the exception of two total stinkers, the
album is quite good.
Nirvana donated a perky little
number titled "I Hate Myself And
Want To Die." This song is an excel-
lent example of Nirvana's rawk n'
roll and would have fit well on any o*.
their three albums.
Anthrax performs "Looking
Down The Barrel Of A Gun," origi-
nally penned by the Beastie Boys, and
continues the successful string of
metal/rap team-ups that they started
with Public Enemy two years ago.
Megadeth's "99 Ways To Die" is
horrid, disposable half-speed metal
wank with Dave Mustaine's whiny
vocals. What the hell is this crap?
Run DMC are one of the best rap
groups around and show their skills
well on "Bounce."
Aerosmith serves up the second
course of flatulence with their bloated
rock song "Deuces Are Wild." White
Zombie "kicks ass" like the band usu-
ally does on their piece "I Am Hell."
Deranged rock band Primus wrote
their song "Poetry And Prose" espe*
cially for this compilation and as Les
Claypool sings, "I ain't one for po-
etry/ I ain't one for prose/I ain't one
for the scent of a spring-time rose/
But there is one fact that I do know/ I
sure get a kick out of that Beavis and
Butt-Head show."
Sir Mix-a-Lot is on track with his
"Monsta Mack" which has a very
funky groove.
Originally a B-side, the Red Hot
Chili Peppers' cover of Iggy and the
Stooges' "Search And Destroy" is
well-handled. Finally, though Jesse
James Dupree sounds exactly like
Brian Johnson of AC/DC (as Butt-
Head would say, it sounds like he's
trying to take. a dump) the music on

"Mental Masturbation" is very good.
The thing that pushes "The Beavi
and Butt-Head Experience" from
good compilation to an excellent al-
bum are the two tracks performed by
the two juvenile delinquents - their
send-up of cheesy R&B love songs,
"Come ToButt-Head," and their team-
up with Cher on "I Got You Babe."
Also adding to the overall excel-
lence are the comments between the
songs including Beavis' and Butt-
Head's experiences on Anthrax's tou
bus and in the 'hood with Run DMC.
These sketches are typically hilarious
and the music is great.
- Matt Carlson




Attend the Daily Mass Meeting
Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at the Student Publications Building

.F k


Tired yet of Beavis and Butthead? Well, they now have an album out.

The Office of Academic Multicultural
9nitiatives is now taking applications for
Student Ceader
positions for the King/Chavezlparks
College Day Spring Visitation program
Yelpplication deadline is 'January 23, 1994
Student leaders accompany visiting middle school
students throughout the day serving as guides
and role models while providing information about
the college experience. Student leaders usually
work in teams of three. They should be fairly out-
going individuals and have a keen interest in and
committment to helping students underrepresented

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