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March 12, 1996 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-03-12

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RezSiimwi Jlzi~g

Get a little 'Wild' at Borders tonight
Jon Krakauer is the author of "Into the Wild," a c-aptivating true story of a
young man who turns his back on civilization and heads north to Alaska.
Krakauer reads at Borders tonight at 7:30. Hell also appear beforehand on
WCBN (88.3 FM) radio's "Defending the Earth" program at 6:30 p.m.

March 12, 1996



comic is the Mac-daddy of laughs
'Def ComedyJam'regular thrills Fox audience

By Eugene Bowen
Daily Arts Writer
It's not easy being a comic, but don't
tell Bernie Mac. Comedy comes as eas-
ily to this man as breathing; ask anyone
who has laughed 'til they cried while
*tching his routines. He is a favorite
ot HBO's "Def Comedy Jam," as well
as-many other stand-up outlets. Satur-
day~night he showed Fox Theater audi-
ences at two sold-out shows just how
funny he is.
Mac couldn't wait three seconds
before he lit into the audience saying:
"You Detroiters are the.most fur-coat-
wearingest people I know." One of
darkest brothas on the comic cir-
t, Bernie Mac was also quick to
bemoan Detroit's cold weather and
contrasted it with Tampa's 100-de-
gree temperature.
Yet it was quickly apparent that
relationship problems would be the
Bernie Mac topic for discussion. He
began by alluding to the days when,
as a child, he had to account for ev-
erything he did and everywhere he
went: "Then young boys grow into
tung men and they're free of all that
slit. Then they get married, and they
have to go through all that shit again.
Now it's the wife keeping tabs on
everything we're doing. They check
our underwear. They buy us pagers so
they can keep tabs. Then, as if their

Bernie Mac
Fox Theater
March 9, 1996
nosey asses didn't already know too
much, they order caller ID."
Mac eventually returned to the past,
reminiscing about his childhood. We
cannot consider ourself familiar with
his routines without recognizing his
distinctive way of re-pronouncing
words. Saying "momenchum" instead
of momentum or "connegate" instead
of congregate, Mac blames his parents
for giving him this illiterate gene.
"I used to hate when my teacher
asked my parents to come to school.
I'd prefer my mother because my dad
would fuck up a word without mercy.
If he came to my class, I'd be fucked
with by the whole school for the rest
of the year.
"My mom wasn't much better,
though. She ended every word with
an 's.' She worked two jobs and all
and couldn't afford tojust come to my
school, but I didn't want my dad com-
ing. She'd go, 'Lawds, Lawds. I's
can'ts leaves works earlys. I's jus'
"But I loved me some grandmama.
Oh yeah. And, better yet, remember

Big Mama. Not just mama or gran'ma
or granny, but Big Mama. She always
wore some ol' flowered dress and had a
bad back and swole-up ankles. She'd
slide her feet instead of walking every-
where she went, humming spirituals
along the way."
Bernie Mac's two-hour stage antics
caused nonstop laughter. He clowned
about his crazy brother who, when he
walks, takes up both aisles of the side-
walk. He also humorously warned abu-
sive men to quit battering their women
- hinting at what might happen to
brutal guys.
He even had to deal with a slightly
drunk-acting person in the audience
who, mistaking him for the late comic
great Robin Harris, started shouting his
demands for some jokes about Be-Be's
Mac received the praises of both
the largely-black audiences he per-
formed before. Dressed to impress
and known for their willingness to
freely heckle anybody on stage who
isn't up to snuff, those who packed
the Fox would have been more than
willing to shun Bernie Mac, had he
deserved it. The standing ovation that
greeted his farewell proved that he
had delivered a first-rate show to one
of the most nit-picky audiences pos-
sible to perform before. Bernie Mac is
all that, and that's all there is to it.

"I love you, Robert Redford, I love you eveny though you're old."
Outstandig cast is goo i -d news

By Ryan Posly
Daily Arts Writer
In the past 30 years, Robert Redford has made a career out
of playing the quintessential American romantic lead. How-
ever, his mesmerizing star power comes not just from his
virile, WASPish handsomeness, but also from his intelli-
gence and the way he frustrates our expectations of the.
romantic star. Still waters run deep for Redford, which
means that what you see is not necessarily what you get.
Michelle Pfeiffer displays a similar persona on screen, and

Lucy' falls and lands in funny fluff

By Christopher Corbett
Daily Arts Writer
Sarah Jessica Parkerin"IfLucy Fell"
has one run-down life. This "Square
Pegs" girl is like a cartoon character
smeared flat by a steam roller.
Lucy, having never been in love, will
turn 30 in 30 days and is seeing idiots
who, after a date, take 20-minute dumps
in her bathroom. She - with her wide,
thy smiles, droopy strands of hair
nd astonished eyes - cracks us up.
She - wallowing in disgust - can
only laugh at the hellishness.
Maybe not. She makes a deal with
her roommate Joe: They will jump from
the Brooklyn Bridge to a watery grave
if they don't find real love by the end of
the month. The enormous calendar
painted across the wall of their apart-
ent becomes a neat motif: We often
them drawing yet another black 'X'
as they count down to "Death Pact
Eric Schaeffer ("My Life's In Turn-
around") does a good job on both sides
of the camera. As the director, he keeps
the humor sharp. For the most part, "If
Lucy Fell" is less a corny date flick than
a twisted, black comedy. He gives us
many unexpected, hilarious moments
throughout - such as when the silent
ucy takes her turn (when out with yet
other "idiot ... savant"), makes a
wish - and gets it immediately.
As Joe, Schaeffer gives us a quirky,
upbeat performance. He obsesses over
thefantastique Jane(Elle Macpherson)
who, living across the way and having
long, sleek legs and hair, makes him
whistle "You, me, me, you." The pact
gets him going. After a series of screw-
ups, heeventually deals with his dream-
trbie "properly," and then gives Lucy
a hard time. She has to take risks also;
because of their pact, she has to go out
with any slob who asks. The film, after
the pair makes their promise, takes off
on a long, unbelievably funny stretch.
Just as Joe tries to get with Jane, Lucy
meets up with Bwick, played by Ben
Stiller. A cross between Lenny Kravitz
and Prince, he uses the word "art" as a
verb to describe what he does for a
l'ying. As a successful painter, he is so
mn funny he steals the film.
Because we've already seen her dis-
mal luck and feel sorry for her because
of it, we love when she hooks up with
Bwick, whose over-the-top ridiculous-
ness takes it all to another, even higher
plane of insanity. You can practically
see a hand grabbing the lever on the hot-
water tank inside her and cranking it off
the scale.
In what may be the best scene of the
tm, Lucy scopes Bwick's crib for the
first time. He and his massive, morose,


If Lucy Fell

Directed by Eric Schaeffer
with Sarah Jessica Parker
and Eric Schaeffer
At Briarwood and Showcase
muscle-bound helpers "art" in front of
her. Bwick, imbalanced and muddled
earlier ("I dare for you not to have me
call you" he had told her before, hand-
ing her his number), now runs amok,
slapping a monstrous canvas with paint
and screaming at the top of his lungs, "I
Thanks to the hilarious sequences

with Lucy's and Joe's efforts, we for-
give the film for stumbling on its way to
the finish line. We get a few sub plots
involving children at Joe's day-care
center, and Lucy's jerky father, who
blows her off. The two story threads
aren't bad; they just feel unnecessary
because we enjoy the four characters'
We walk away satisfied, even though
the conclusion of the death-pact story
ends cheesily (Schaeffer switches from
the spunk and funk he created earlier in
the film to more of a conventional ro-
mantic-comedy routine to resolve the
movie). Sure,"If Lucy Fell" might leave
a lot of people saying, "Like, gahg me
with a spoon, oh-kah?" But if you take
the film for what it is-mindless, often
funny, fluff-you'll probably enjoy it.

Up Close
:- and Personal
Directed by Jon A vnet
with Robert Redford
and Michelle Pfeiffer
At Ann Arbor 1 & 2 and Showcase

together she and
Redford spark an
intriguing blend of
chemistry in Jon
"Up Close & Per-
sonal." A deftly
directed but clum-
sily written film, it
tells the engrossing
story of a young
woman's meteoric

her name to Tally, she quickly moves from desk clerk to
weather girl to first-rate reporter under the tutelage of Justice.
Her ambition is fierce, her raw talent plentiful and Justice's
influence indispensable.
Somewhere along the way, Tally and Warren fall in love.
It is not the sappy kind of infatuation nor the passionate lust
of most love stories. Rather, it is a sophisticated sort of
attachment to each other that fluctuates realistically from
strained to ardently happy. While Tally moves up in the
industry, she motivates Warren to return to what he loves -
field reporting - instead of continuing his decline by work-
ing as a news director. Their relationship.is thus mutually
beneficial: Warren gives Tally the knowledge and wisdom to
make it to the top, and Tally gives Warren the courage and
vigor to return to the life he left so long ago.
As the film moves to itsbittersweet conclusion, it becomes
clear that we are witnessing two extraordinary actors -not
necessarily at their best, but on their game nonetheless. The
film suffers from frequent bouts of weak dialogue ("Do you
want to be with me?" "So much it hurts."), but Redford and
Pfeiffer do their best to make it believable.
Redford especially shines here as an aging news guru who
has been out of the loop for some time. As he is looking for
a new way into the business, whenever he hears an old name,
Redford is forced to repeatedly say things like: "I haven't
seen him since we covered Cambodia together." But Redford
says it with just a hint of nostalgia and a touch of regret. He
manages to shade his character, to show us glimpses into
Warren that belie his surface. Pfeiffer, for her part, creates a
likable protagonist for us to follow and root for, but it is
Redford who draws our attention.
The excellent supporting cast includes Stockard Channing
See PERSONAL, Page 8

rise in the television news industry and the man who makes
it possible.
Sally Atwater(Pfeiffer)is anaive Reno casino craps dealer
with dreams of becoming a star and moving herself and her
sister from their trailer park to New York's Upper West Side,
which she heard about on TV. So she fakes a demo tape and
sends it across the country. Her only reply is from a small
station in Miami, now run by former White House correspon-
dent and respected hard-news reporter- with a name found
only in the movies -, Warren Justice (Redford). Changing




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