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March 11, 1997 - Image 8

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-03-11

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Lee Meadows talks about African American mystery writers. A
mystery writer himself, Meadows will discuss the works of such
authors as Walter Mosley, Chester Hines and Hugh Holton. Treat
yourself to the excitement of the genre. Join Meadows at the Ann
Arbor District Library (343 S Fifth Ave.) this afternoon at 12:10.
Call 994-2345 for more details.

:..

F° ri

Allen tells goals for a jungle world

"Surprise," a film by Veit Helmer, Is a part of the 35th annual Ann Arbor Film
Festival this week at the Michigan Theater.
FFestival
launches i 2

By Bryan Lark
Daily Film Editor
What advice would Tim Allen give
someone seeking success in the enter-
tainment business?
"Make lists. Get a yellow legal pad and
make lists of what you want to accom-
plish tomorrow, this year and the rest of
your life. Just live by that list and you'll
be surprised at how much you can
achieve. Oh, and follow successful peo-
ple - riding coattails never hurt anyone."
Achieving success in Hollywood on
his own merit as a stand-up comedian,
Allen, star of "Home Improvement" and
a newly anointed big-screen funnyman,
has definitely earned the right to dole out
such sobering advice on success.
Turning his life around after an
extended stint in prison, Allen returned
triumphantly to southeast Michigan on
March 2, 1997, for the gala benefit pre-
miere of his new comedy, "Jungle 2
Jungle."
Greeted by a near sell-out crowd at
Detroit's Fox Theatre, Allen was the
hometown hero for the day at the pre-
miere, which raised funds for the
Lighthouse Foundation of Oakland
County.
Surrounded by cameras, recording
devices and blinding light, Allen gra-
ciously answered questions at a pre-
show press conference.
Dressed in black and donning glass-
es, the humble and down-to-earth Allen
said that he was honored to "turn the
light on for Lighthouse, so to speak,"
referring to his insistence that the pre-
miere solely benefits the Michigan
organization that aims to prevent
hunger, homelessness and hopeless-
ness.
On the matter of Allen's reasoning in
holding the premiere of "Jungle 2
Jungle" in Detroit: His motive was

purely the satisfaction of returning as a
hometown boy who made good.
"Detroit's my hometown. So, when
I'm here, I just walk around with an ear-
to-ear grin; you couldn't pay me to stop
smiling. Premieres in L.A. are just so
commonplace, but here it's a big thing;
people bring the kids and there's a new
experience for everyone."
Some may wonder why Allen chose
"Jungle 2 Jungle" as the follow-up to
the hugely successful 1994 comedy
"The Santa Clause," since the films are
so similar in a wacky, fish-out-of-water
sort of way.
"It was offered to me, so I didn't have
to read, which I don't do very well,"
quipped Allen.
"Seriously, it had a good emotional arc
and plenty of chances for hijinks."
Directed by John Pasquin, who also
helmed "The Santa Clause," "Jungle" is
an American retooling of the unjustifiable
French farce, "Little Indian, Big City."
When asked how his version mea-
sured up, Pasquin, also present in the
press room, tentatively answered,
"That's a tough question. It's different.
It's definitely better for American audi-
ences, since it wasn't dubbed into
English. But it does have Tim in it, so
I'm not guaranteeing anything."
The rapport between Pasquin and
Allen was obvious during their joint
interview, with Pasquin likening Allen
on the set to "your worst nightmare -
the bad uncle at family gatherings;" or
Allen asking "John who?" when he was
asked about his two-time director and
golfing buddy.
In between barbs at his director and
jokes about the indescribable whiteness
of his teeth on the "Jungle" poster,
Allen got temporarily serious, express-
ing his skepticism at the new television
content rating system.

It's original! It's wacky! It's won-
derful! It's watchable! It's the 35th
Annual Ann Arbor Film Festival and
it kicks off tonight at the Michigan
Theater. Showcasing the best and
brightest in the cinematic arts, the
Festival prides itself on merging the
most vital artistic forces in Ann Arbor.
Still organized and run by Vicki
Honeyman, the Festival each year
allows innovative animated, docu-
mentary and experimental filmmak-
ing to be seen by a large audience in a
vibrant and creative atmosphere.
Tonight's festivities start at 7 p.m.

with an opening reception, a perfor-
mance by Peter Sparling of Dance
Gallery and an on-going silent auc-
tion in the upper lobby of the theater.
The film program begins at 8:00 p.m.
Approximate running time of
tonight's screening is 110 minutes.
Ticket Prices are $6 for one screening,
$10 for a night's worth of screenings
and $35 for a festival pass that entitles
the bearer to six days worth of films,
including the Winners' Night on
Sunday. Now sit back and enjoy the
wonderful, watchable wackiness.
- Biyan Lark

Tonight's Film Festival screenings

Family film in need of home improvement

By Julia Shih
Daily Arts Writer
"Jungle 2 Jungle," Disney's latest
comedy starring Tim Allen, is a film
that audiences will find side-splittingly
funny and wonderfully entertaining -
that is, if you are a young child who
doesn't know any better.
Based on the 1994 French film, "Un
Indien Dans La Ville" ("Little Indian,
Big City"), "Jungle 2 Jungle" is laden
with trademark Disney fluff to please
children, but without enough spunk or
humor to entertain the rest of the popu-

cation.
Allen plays Michael Cromwell, a
successful commodities trader who
devotes his entire life and attention span
to his work. With plans to remarry in 30
days, Cromwell travels deep into the
heart of the Amazon jungle, to get his
long-estranged wife Patricia (JoBeth
Williams) to sign the divorce papers.
But upon arrival, Patricia surprises
him with the presentation of a son that
he never knew he had - a 13 year-old
named Mimi Siku (Sam Huntington),
which roughly translates into "cat piss."

,!

Tim Allen and "Cat Piss" share a family moment.

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