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January 13, 1997 - Image 8

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-01-13

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.


Mxb SMdii&u ltig

'Breaking the Waves'
Cannes Film Festival Grand Jury Prize winner continues its run at the
Michigan Theater tonight. Lars Von Trier's film captures the plight of
Bess, a young girl living on the northern coast of Scotland in the '70s.
She marries an oil rig worker who becomes paralyzed in an accident.
"Breaking the Waves" begins at 9:30 p.m. and is $5 for students,
$6.50 for others.

Verdict in:'Flynt' triumphs
Superb performances make docudrama succeed
By Neal C. Carruth the early years of Flynt's career, show- love, and a man who, while interestedi
Fore Daily ing his ownership of an unprofitable protecting his investments, may hav
A filmgoers, at times we are like the string of strip clubs, his first mild suc- glimpsed a higher principle.
proverbial slack-jawed spectators, cess with a pornographic promotional The film must be given considerabl
motoring past the scene of a gruesome newsletter, and the initial controversy credit for several reasons. First, it is
accient. engendered by the publication of very entertaining film. This is largel
it is in this fashion that Milos Hustler. due to the three standout lead perfo

in
ve
le
a
ly
)r-

Fonan, a great
filmmaker with lit- R
tleĀ°utput to hisR
cradxl, draws one Tl
into the life of
p&u.ographer and
puibshing titan
Lawy Flynt, a man
whom most would consider unworthy
of a wrell-crafted, studio-produced bio-
graplical picture.
Forman brilliantly parlays a schema-
tid slice of Flynt's story into both a
riveting examination of the contested
nafiie of "fundamental" rights, and an
account of how a volatile mix of wealth
an dynamism of character makes it
possle to feed magnificently off of the
system, while simultaneously battling
against it.
"The People vs. Larry Flynt" opens
in rural Kentucky in the early 'Ss,
where we find Flynt seized by the entre-
preneurial spirit at an early age, selling
potent moonshine to backwoods
dwellers.
The first minutes of the film sketch

EVIEW
e People vs.
Larry Flynt
***A
At Showcase

The bulk of
Forman's film
details Flynt's
often outrageous
legal battles with
authorities and his
unconventional
relationship with

mances. Harrelson captures Flynt's bit-
terness as well as he conveys his
charm, leaving the ghost of "Cheers"'
Woody Boyd far, far behind him,
There is much to relish, particularly
his unfettered courtroom behavior.
Love does an uncompromising job as
Althea. She allows herself to fully
plumb the depths of this character.
Edward Norton is also terrific as
Flynt's fast-talking attorney Alan
Isaacman.
Forman must also be recognized for

a stripper named Althea Leasure,
played in a grand manner by Courtney
Love.
Flynt is portrayed by Woody
Harrelson, who does a remarkable job

Courtney Love and Woody Harrelson look at a copy of Playboy In "The People vs. Larr

of humanizing
Larry Flynt.
Certainly we see
the bravado and
infantile antics
that landed
Flynt in news-
paper headlines
in the '80s.
But we also
see Flynt as a
shrewd business
executive, a
man capable of

making "The
People vs.
Larry Flynt"
worthwhile. He
shows that he
still has an inti-
mate feel for
characters that
are deliciously
off - kilter
(r e m e m be r
McMurphy in
"One Flew
Over the

Cuckoo's Nest" and Mozart in
"Amadeus"). Forman also has a keen
sense of visual rhythm, creating a film
that jitters with fascinating images of
sleaze, opportunism and triumph.
Of course, one may ask, "What need
is there for this film? What purpose
does it serve to magnify the life and
struggles of Larry Flynt?"
These are valid questions and to
answer them as Forman would, you
need to buy into his thesis that the cen-
sorship that accompanies totalitarian-
ism travels down a slippery slope from
pornography to works that are deemed

"inappropriate" only by those in con-
trol.
Much has been made of the omis-
sions and distortions of "The People vs.
Larry Flynt," and perhaps they should
be addressed. Any biographer, especial-
ly one working on film, is entitled to
recreate a life bearing in mind the con-
straints of the medium.
Screenwriters Scott Alexander and
Larry Karaszewski (who collaborated
previously on "Ed Wood") don't give us
any hint in the film that Flynt's mar-
riage to Leasure was his fourth and that
he has remarried since her AIDS-relat-

Monday
January 13, 19978 4
y Flynt."
ed death. We don't Lear that he has five
children, one of whom has recently.
accused Flynt of years of sexual and.
physical abuse.
"The People vs. Larry Flynt" does
not give the audience an appropriate
sense of Hustler's contents, instead
the film plays up the magazine as at
worst outlandish and in poor taste
Those battling Hustler (Charles;
Keating, Jerry Falwell) are portrayed.
as prudish, hypocritical stick figures..
While neither of those gentlemen arc
counted among my personal heroesp'
Larry Flynt isn't either
A
*,
E
nr<9

.1
rock 'n' roll motif are not going to do.,
wonders for his already talentless ban
- Brian Cohe s
See RECORDS, Page 9A3

The real Larry Flynt appears In "Flynt" as the
judge In the publisher's first obscenity case.

Mint Condition still fresh on new 'Definition'

Mint Condition
Definition Of A Band
Perspective Records
Co'ntinuing in the trend of its previ-
ous-two albums "Meant To Be Mint"
and "From The Mint Factory," Mint
Condition delivers yet another impres-
sively, well-constructed album to its
music audience. On its current album,
"Definition Of A Band," the group does
everything from song writing and pro-
ducing to playing its own instruments in
creating this musical masterpiece.
One of the most appealing things
about this 18-track CD is that it pro-
vides listeners with a taste of the band's
diversity and originality. Whether
you're into R&B, jazz, funk or rock,
this album has something to offer
everyone.
"You Don't Have To Hurt No More'
"On & On" and "The Never That You'll
Never Know," a few of the more laid-
back songs on the album, emphasize
the positive and romantic side of love
and relationships.
in complete contrast, "Sometimes," a
more rock-inspired tune, deals with the
confusion that can sometimes enter a
relationship. On the more serious tip,

"Missing" focuses on the troubling
problem of child abduction plaguing
our society today. The band members
draw on their various tastes and skills to
blend together a different style of
music, which definitely works on this
album.
Although the members of Mint
Condition pride themselves on being
musicians, the vocal talent they display
is not to be overlooked. Headed by lead
vocalist Stokely, the band shows much
vocal skill on songs like "Gettin' It On,"
"Let Me Be The One" and "Ain't
Hookin' Me Up Enough."
With "Definition Of A Band," Mint
Condition sets out to define what good
music is all about and definitely deliv-
ers. Between the talented song writing,
solid vocals and skillfully played music,
the band comes up big.
- Jessica Simmons
Aunt Bettys
Aunt Bettys
EastWest
The fact that Aunt Bettys has a

record contract symbolizes everything
that is wrong and aggravating about
the music industry today. It reveals
once again the all-too-common prac-
tice of record company weasels mak-
ing it their passion to push absolute
rubbish just to fit into a certain demo-
graphic. How anyone can stand to lis-
ten to the Orange County quartet's
eponymous debut release is simply
beyond me, and anyone who can stom-
ach this material deserves a special
prize; I suggest a sharp blow to the
head.
"Aunt Bettys" falters from the get
go, and gets worse as it progresses.
The record is essentially a boring
onslaught of lazy acoustic guitar,
made all the worse by monotonous
bass, dull drumming and discordant
electronic textures. The pieces
approach classic hard rock, bordering
on the punk side of alternative with
overly raspy vocals somewhere (seem-
ingly intentionally) between Tom
Petty and Screaming Trees frontman
Mark Lanegan.
The opening track, "Jesus," combines
an uninspiring acoustic intro with gun-
fire guitar, screeching vocals and rapid
drumming, all of which amount to
absolutely nothing but a thoroughly
pathetic and annoying display of noise.

Singer / songwriter Michael Knott, a
former long-time solo Christian Rock
artist, has now seemingly turned grunge
and his miserable attempt at a melody
on this dismal opener does nothing to
set this new invention off on the right
foot. Nor do his lyrics: "I'm getting
screwed, I'm getting used I/'m getting
kicked, I'm getting tricked." Well, at
least Knott shows that he can rival the
rhyming ability of the average second
grader.
Unfortunately there are 15 other
songs on the album left to endure, all
equally as dreadful, if not worse, than
the first. "Lush" begins with a lack-
luster riff and is soon drenched by
Knott's wannabe Dylan-esque story-
telling. As you might guess, however,
the song's message is just as over-
whelmingly boring as the music
itself.
Nobody cares about some psychotic
nymphomaniac who is covered in tat-
toos from head to toe, or about the
fighting couple in "Feel," about the
abusive, drunk, old man who is the sub-
ject of "Suicide Sex Doll." The same
repetitive type of songs fall in line one
by one as the record painfully proceeds.
If on the off chance that there is a
second album from the illustrious Aunt
Bettys, (and for the sake of anyone

These funky guys are Mint Condition.
born with ears, I certainly hope there is
not), perhaps Knott will climb out of
his cave and realize that bad songs sat-
urated with the bone-dry sex, drugs and

The Office Of New
Student Programs
is looking for
ORIENTATION LEADERS
and
DIVERSITY PROGRAM FACILITATORS
for Summer 1997. We will be holding
general information meetings on
Thursday, January 16
and Friday, January 17
from 4-5:30 p.m. in the
Maize and Blue Auditoriums
in the Student Activities Building.

a

e

MICHIGAN
RECORDS

-a
real music.
gra rcs

1

scheduled for

- -
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..-. Atie ae

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