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December 02, 1996 - Image 10

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The Michigan Daily, 1996-12-02

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10 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, December 2, 1996

'Tis the season.
for position to gain end-of-the-year honors, bucks

0

0

Holiday maji
By Bryan Lark
Daily Arts Writer
Cue the theme from
"Chariots of Fire"-- the
long and winding race for
that gilded golden gentle-
men called Oscar has offi-
cially begun this holiday sea-
son. With 1996 less than a
month from being history,
every film released this yearf
that has any chance of Oscar
consideration is sprinting to
the finish line in hopes of
getting the gold.
"The Birdcage" and "Fargo"
have been steady marathon
runners since their respective
March release dates.
"Trainspotting;' "Emma," and
"Lone Star" three summer dark
horses, are still gaining steam.
"Michael Collins" and "The
English Patient" are casually
taking steps as grand as their stories. "Big Night"
and "Swingers" are refreshing underdog competi-
tors who have recently joined in the hunt.
Leading the pack of unabashed Academy

Award hopefuls is the much-anticipated,
oft-delayed adaptation of Arthur Miller's
classic "The Crucible." Starring Daniel
Day-Lewis, Winona Ryder and Joan Allen,
this tale of lust, betrayal and witchcraft is the
clearest favorite in a
race with no clear
favorites.
Also dead serious
about staying alive in
this sprint are towering
achievements -,
including Kenneth
Branagh's mercilessly
complete, sleep-induc-
ing, butt-cramping
four-hour "Hamlet";
Madonna's death knell
or big break "Evita"; -
Rob Reiner's harrow-
ingly true civil rights
drama "Ghosts of
Mississippi," which is r
stirring buzz for Alec
Baldwin, Whoopi
Goldberg and James
Woods; Shirley
Maclaine's triumphant
return to the Texas
locales and syrupy sen-
timentality of "Terms
Of Endearment" in Daniel Day-Lewis in "Ti
"The Evening Star" Lemmon and James Gai
(sequel to the former); "My Fellow Americans.
and Sir Richard --- ----
Attenborough's lush Hemingway biography, "In
Love and War."
Smaller but no less serious contestants range
from the dysfunctional family of "Marvin's
Room," to the surreal strength of Jane Campion's
"The Portrait of A Lady" to John Singleton's

striking "Rosewood," to the witty take on the life
of a porn publisher in "The People vs. Larry
Flynt," which is creating talk of Oscars for Woody
Harrelson and Courtney Love.
Smaller still are quirky competitors who want
Oscar nods more than
audiences, including
Kevin Spacey's verbose
hostage thriller,
"Albino Alligator"; the
Vietnam study "The
War at Home which is
the directorial debut of
Emilio Estevez; the
Australian masterpiece
"Shine," about the life
of a composer; a black
comedy about abortion
called "Citizen Ruth";
and a direct-from-
Broadway family
struggle, "Substance of
Fire;" starring Sarah
Jessica Parker, Timothy
Hutton and Tony
Goldwyn as troubled
siblings.
Thankfully, not all
of this month's releas-
es are greedy for nom-
inations and dead-set
Crucible" (top); Jack on winning the Oscar
er share the stage in marathon -- some are
just plain greedy ...
__-_--___---- for cash, that is.
Also, thankfully, there is only one inane action
film being released - Sylvester Stallone's
unnecessary "Daylight," (otherwise known as
"'Die Hard' in the Holland Tunnel") which will
undoubtedly be a huge cash cow.
In the alternate, non-Oscar cash race, comedy

seems to be king,
which explains the
need for 10 comedic
releases between
now and New Year's
Eve.
Promising humor
and heart, the lead- e
ing blockbuster
wannabes are Tim '
Burton's wonderfully
campy response to
"Independence Day"
"Mars Attacks!";
Penny Marshall's
(a.k.a. Laverne's)
romantic remake,
"The Preacher's
Wife," which has Martin Short has a close
Denzel Washington
and Whitney Houston praising the Lord and
praising the rewards of a capitalist system; the
season's most romantic sports comedy, its only
romantic sports comedy, "Jerry Maguire," which
features an outstanding ensemble headed by Tom
Cruise, Cuba Gooding Jr.,
Bonnie Hunt and Kelly AID e
Preston (Mrs. John Travolta);
and the winter's most effer-
vescent piece of film fluff -
the inspired pairing of
Michelle Pfeiffer and George
Clooney in "One Fine Day."
Screwball antics will
undoubtedly abound. Kenneth Branagh
Despite intriguing con-
cepts, several of the season's lesser-known
comedies are less than sure things, as opposed to
their well-publicized counterparts.
Such risky runners include "My Fellow
Americans," starring James Garner and Jack

encounter in "Mars Attacks!"

arne
,

Lemmon as grumpy old presidents on a wacky
cross-country journey; "Beavis and Butthead Do
America;' starring MTV's resident idiots (no,
not Simon Rex and John Sencio) who travel on,
a wacky cross-country journey; and "Michael,"
starring Andie MacDowed
and William Hurt on a wacky
cross-country journey to find
fallen archangel John
Travolta.
For all the confusion andt
uncertainty created by sure
front-runners and risky rear
runners, the race for Oscar is
tars in "Hamlet." most definitely under way',
- --this holiday season. And
regardless of what triumphs and what is trap
pled underfoot, the race has beer
enjoyable. Who'll cross the '96 finish line tri
umphant and who'll be the victim of a '97 TKO? <
Go to the movies and see.

s s

Courtney Love and Woody Harrelson star In "The
People vs. Larry Flynt."

[1i Travel ,
1220 S. UNNERSITY., STE. 208 (ABOVE MCDONALDS)
998-0200
h ttv: //wwnene .o re/f ravel ht m

RECORDS
Continued from Page 8
jennyanykind
Revelater
Elektra Entertainment

a
;,$}

9

Jennyanykind is just what the world
needs: An indie rock group of $ob
Dylans, complete with blues and folk
influences and lots and lots of religious
references. "Revelater" is Christian
rock done right, because the first few
times you listen to it you have no idea
it is Christian rock; this album is just
too damn good. -Jennyanykind is,.
cool they don't even thank God or:
Jesus in the liner notes.
The disc sets up its religious theme,
with the first two songs "repent in.
time" and "revelation in practice room..
#13." Then it kicks into "you better get
right with god," a balls-out Velvet
Underground-esque rocker about the
lead singer hanging out with God. The:
band moves from there into the first~
single. "when the sun shines down *
the average," a bouncy classic rock
tune that would make even the most-
heathenistic of us pump our fists
toward heaven.
What really sets jennyanykind apart
from the current slew of bad alterna-

-rI - r i lFI-cA

I

IW

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