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January 16, 1997 - Image 18

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-01-16

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8B - W Michigan Daily Weekedi Magazine - Thursdaynuary 16, 1997


* __


The MichigarSaily Weekend

"Trainspotting"'s Renton, played by Ewan McGregor, pictured here on the wrong side of the tracks.
Announcing the
$1996-1W 997

Continued from Page 4B
Hollywood has never been one for Bobs
and Mikes.
I've got it: "1996: The Year of the
Disposable Film." Savvy audiences
swatted away cinematic garbage just as
fast as Hollywood could spew it forth
this year.
Do you remember "The Pallbearer?"
What about "Faithful?" Or "Eddie?" Or
"The Trigger Effect?" Or "The
Frighteners?" Already shined off "The
Evening Star?" Have
we, ironically,
already forgotten
Perhaps the year
can be characterized
by neither its hits nor
its misses. Maybe it's
those embarrassing
middle-ground films
that hold the key -
"1996: The Year of
B r i l i a n t
All in the name of>
being mediocre,
George Clooney
wisely spurned
vampires and
Juliette Lewis;
"Speed" went to '?
Utah with John
Travolta and Bill Paxton and H
Christian Slater; their lives in "Tw
Spike Lee got on
the bus, while very few others did;
Geena Davis alternately slayed with
big knives and bad acting; and Julia
Roberts, sadly confused, was dis-
turbed by an eel and aroused by John
Malkovich in "Mary Reilly."
Also for the sake of the mediocre,
Marky Mark Wahlberg pulled a
Glenn Close by decapitating the fam-
ily dog in "Fear"; Michelle Pfeiffer
showed compassion for the elderly by

getting close to Robert Redford in
spite of his liver spots and dentures in
"Up Close and Personal"; spending
"2 Days In The Valley" showed why
it's best to rent "Pulp Fiction," thus
saving 45 1/2; and for the first time,
Whitney sang in "The Preacher's
Wife" and no one cared.
Contemplating the above title choic-
es, maybe our friends at the Chinese
restaurant had the right idea. Perhaps
the year in film 1996 was, indeed, the
year of the rat.
After all, rats are always moist and
dirty (see "Trainspotting," "A Time To
Kill" or "The
Crucible"); rats are
frightening to some
(see "Scream,"
"Sleepers" or "The
Hunchback of
Notre Dame"); and
rats are often amus-
ing in that zany, dis-
turbed kind of way
(see. "The
Birdcage" "Flirting
With Disaster,"
"Swingers" or
"Welcome To The
Yeah, "1996: The
Year of the Rat."
Thats sounds great.
As we recall the
most superb of cine-
matic creatures -
len Hunt run for "Fargo," "The
ter." English Patient,"
"Emma," "The
People vs. Larry Flynt" and "Lone Star"
- we notice that "The Year of the Rat"
illustrates that there was a little soiled,
disturbing, hilarious rat in everyone and
everything in 1996, even those that
weren't mentioned above (cheap plug for
"Girl 6" "The Truth About Cats and
Dogs" and "Courage Under Fire").
1997 will be the year of the buffalo.
Oh, the big, hairy cinematic possibili-

I'll always
remember 1996
as the year I
stopped listening
to the radio. I
turned that little'
switch on my
clock radio from
"wake to radio"
to "wake to
By Brian A. Gnatt buzzer" so I could
Daily Arts Editor hear that nail-bit-
with Matt Pinfield of MTV ing "Beeeeeeep.
Beeeeeeep,' instead of Alanis' "You you
you oughta knowow" blaring in my ears
each and every morning. Best of all,
when some bastard stole the antenna
from my car, I couldn't have cared less.
The only drawback was that I had to lis-
ten to static during tape changes as
opposed to the grueling guitars of the fla-
vor-of-the month alternative band.
I'll also remember 1996 as the year I
finally gave up on MTV. I know, I know,
"I told you so." But I gave them the ben-
efit of the doubt: Maybe they would
remember what the "M" in MTV stood
for. Surprisingly, they did, and decided
to create the 24-hour music channel M2
for music and to use MTV for game
shows more inane than VJ Daisy
Fuentes, even on a good day.
There were a few good records
released last year. It's just hard to remem-
ber what they were. Everyone and his
mother latched onto Beck's "Odelay,"
and rightfully so. A few new acts gained
a good buzz like Garbage, The Cardigans
and Kula Shaker, and veterans
Screaming Trees.
But 1996 was probably best used for
looking back in retrospect. Two great
rock 'n' roll bands helped me see the past
and better understand what the music


industry is all about. Kiss and Sex Pistols
reunion tours taught the world about
rocking and rolling all night and anarchy
in the U.K., but they also reminded
everyone that it's not called the music
( business" for nothing. Both bands
charged a pretty penny to see their 40-
something selves shake, rattle and roll
through arenas around the globe.
The Sex Pistols reunion was my
favorite part of the year. I was 2 years old
when Johnny Rotten muttered the band's
famous last words, "Ever get the feeling
you've been cheated," in January 1978. It
was a thrill to see the baddest boys of
rock live, even if they made clear their
motives for touring. But if bands weren't
interested in making money, they would-
n't bother to tour in the first place.
Nevertheless, it was awesome to see
the veins popping out of Johnny Rotten's
head as he screamed, "She was a girl from
Birmingham / She just had an abortion /
She was a case of insanity / Her name was
Pauline and she lived in a tree," from the
Pistols' classic "Bodies." Hearing
"Anarchy in the U.K." live was an equally,
enjoyable thrill, and despite what people
may say, the Sex Pistols, and especially
Rotten, are the same old bullocks they
always were, with more energy and a
spicier tongue than the majority of record-
ing acts today.
I'm embarrassed to admit it, but "The
Complete Tom Jones" was one of my
finest purchases in 1996. With "It's Not
Unusual;' "She's A Lady" and a cover of
Prince's "Kiss,"how could you go wrong?
For 1997, though, I'm hoping I can
find better music to listen to than a 60-
year-old lounge singer who still has
panties thrown at him while on stage.
Granted, Tom Jones is a tough act to fol-
low, but I think we can do it.
There are a few artists with upcoming

albums that might be able to shake up the
industry in 1997. Jamiroquai's soulful
new record hit stores this week, and with
vocals like Stevie Wonder and a sound
like gold, what's not to like? Ben Harper
is expected to release another great
record on the heels of his '96 buzz. And
surprisingly, U2 might even release a
good record with their very cool
"Discotheque" single already racing up

the charts.
Regardless of the new
music of 1997, it will sur
top the high point of my
year. I'll always remembe
year I met MTV's Matt Pi
of "120 Minutes." While hi
appearance and his not-so-
may make you chuckle, he
knowledgeable VJ, and prc

FA State of the Arts

The Tenth Annual Unive
Campaign for a Ur

Opening Performance
Kelly Williams/The Clark Sisters
Date: Sunday, January 19
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Place: Power Center
Tickets available at the Michigan Union Box
Office at 313.763.8587



MLK Memorial Lecture
Dr..Mary Frances Berry
Date: Monday, January 20
Time: 10:30 a.m.
Place: Hill Auditorium

Get the Iow down on
the who's who of the
salary charts,.
Check out the
Salary Supplement,
in the Board Office of the
Michigan Daily.
Stop by our office on
the second floor of the

F a-.
Ch ideya
CNN political analyst
1 P.M.
MondayJanuary 20
Michigan Union Ballroom
(Seating is limited to the first 600 guests)
Author/activist Farai Chideya is on a mission to set the
record straight about the media's portrayal of African-
Americans, the growing rift between the Civil Rights
generation'and younger African-Americans, and how
young African-Americans can pursue successful careers.
Chideya is an author and a former reporter for Newsweek
magazine and MTV. She now covers politics on CNN.
Sponsors: School of Information
University Libraries
tl _~LII Information Technology Division

. _


By Giving Us Your Opinion
For University Housing Dining Services Test Kitchen
Help Evaluate Recipes, New Products, and Concepts.
Call 763-3612, or Stop in Betsey
Barbour Room B-5 or
e-mail the Executive Chef at
"meyerss~umich.edu" or attend
first meeting on 1/17/97 at Betsey
Barbour Dining Room 3:30 - 4:30 pm.


Sounds of Blackness with special
guests, The University of Michigan
Gospel Chorale
Date: Monday, January 20
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Place: Hill Auditorium
Tickets are $12 to $26 and are available at the
University Musical Society Box Office,
Community Service Project
Acting on the Dream
Date: Monday, January 20
Time: 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
(time will vary with activity)
Contact Project Serve at 313.936.2437
MLK Unity March
Date: Monday, January 20
Time: 12:00 noon
Sponsor: Black Student Union 747.1067
Symposium Panel
Affirmative Action in the Academy:
Safeguarding the Gains Made-
Date: Monday, January 20
Time: 3:15 p.m. - 5:15 p.m.
Place: U-M Law School, Hutchins Hall, Room 100
These events are coordinated by the 1997 MLK
Symposium Planning Committee, and are spon-
sored by the Office of the. Vice Provost for Aca-
demic and Multicultural Affairs, the Office of Aca-
demic Multicultural Initiatives, and by the 1997 MLK
Symposium Planning Committee, unless differently


Future 1



uiediE, r?.
915 Maiden Lane

Student Publicatiom Building,
420 Maynard Street; or call
764-0550 for more detail

662-031 7


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