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September 03, 1997 - Image 19

Resource type:
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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-09-03

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Ullie tiown j~atI

Have some 'Compassion'
"Love, Valour, Compassion" plays today on the Michigan's big
screen. Come see this renowned art house hit starring Jason
Alexander and a talented ensemble as a group of friends who spend
the summer together talking, laughing and loving. Showing at The
Michigan Theater at 7 p.m. $5 for students.

Wednesday
Sept. 3, 1997

19A-

.ilW is

'G.I. Jane': A Real American Hero?

By Joshua Rich
Dailffrts Writer
In Ridley Scott's "G.I. Jane," Demi
Moore once again defies logic by pos-
ing ;s a blockbuster-caliber movie star
whljpas little screen presence and no
unctrstanding of how to convincingly
s line.
deed, "G.I. Jane" is perhaps the
molt ridiculous vehicle for such a cine-
matic zero; the rock-video boot camp
ronmp demands of its female lead a cer-
tain dominant
presence beyond
her rippling mus- R E
cles. and flat
tummy. (Since it
is a Demi Moore
fl j, we are privy .
t many juicy A
shots of her sexy,
albeit artificial bod.)
As Navy SEAL-aspirant Jordan
O'Neil, the affectless Moore does little
but "miake military training look sexy,
which it inherently isn't. To be sure,
"G., Jane" comes off more like a sado-
masochistic Madonna video set in
Vietnam than a bona fide pensive
drania.
*he plot of the film is negligible.
After some nonsense occurs with a lady
senAtor (Anne Bancroft, who comes off
as the world's biggest bitch since women
of power can never be accepted as the
nice folks they are), Jordan is summarily
chosen as the first woman to go through
combat training because, we are told, she
looks like the least lesbian of the candi-

dates. She is also expected to fail.
The rest of the film, then, is a mon-
strous montage of boot camp abuses at
the hands of sinister Master Chief
Urgayle (Viggo Mortensen), including
scenes of soldiers swimming fully-
clothed in freezing water and eating
food out of garbage cans. I guess this,
the most grueling training on Earth, is
what makes a real man.
Unfortunately, the film dwells too
much on the idea that Jordan must be

VIEW
G.I. Jane
**
tState and Showcase

made
order
From

into
to
the

a man in
succeed.
start, the

guinea pig woman
resents her special
treatment as a mem-
ber of the fairer sex.
She demands equal
treatment, moving

izens, deserve to protect the country like
anyone else. I don't see any reason why
Jordan couldn't go into combat with her
femininity and dignity still intact (all of
which is completely lost when she
informs the bad guy that he can "suck
my dick," and then seriously kicks his
ass when he tries to sodomize her).
In this terribly misbegotten film,
Ridley Scott has taken a highly politi-
cally charged topic and rendered it com-
pletely impotent. What should be an
exceptionally provocative movie like his
earlier triumph "Thelma & Louise" is
nothing more than a mere snarling
action flick (something that one might
expect from his brother Tony, of testos-
terone-overdrive films like "Top Gun"
and "Crimson Tide").
Still, this director is up to his same old
tricks. His movie lacks any inkling of the
subtlety on which fine cinema is made.
"G.I. Jane" is plagued by gratuitous ele-
ments including soldiers marching with
condoms on their big rifles. Like "Alien"
and "Blade Runner" and "Black Rain"
before it, "G.I. Jane" is very dark and
sweaty, so that Jordan's situation appears
more bleak than anything imaginable.
And it certainly does - the boot camp
scenes are definitely exciting, and
Moore looks awfully tough with scars
covering her stony, shaved head.
Scott no doubt put a lot of effort into
buffing-up his cream puff movie just as
his otherwise vacant leading lady did to
her figure. It's too bad he didn't make
an equal effort to give "G.I. Jane" a
viable purpose.

into the men's barracks, and, in a truly
flat scene played up as the movie's cen-
terpiece of golden feminine liberation,
she shaves her long hair to some intend-
ed motivational music. While perfectly
aware that soul assassination is a staple
of military training, I didn't realize that
defeminization is also a prerequisite.
By too closely intertwining the idea of
the military and msculinity, "G.I. Jane"
neglects what should have been it's
important message. Viewers are by now
so jaded that we expect soldiers to be
super-macho, when in fact most warriors
aren't. Women shouldn't be in combat
because they can be hyper-masculine
like the next guy. Rather, they should be
in combat because they, as American cit-

Clockwise from left: Viggo Mortensen
raises hell as designated bad guy
Master Chief Urgayle; As an ambitious-
lady Senator, Anne Bancroft proves
she's no longer Mrs. Robinson; DemI
Moore stars as Lt. Jordan O'Neil In
Ridley Scott's dark and sweaty "G.I.
Jane."

U I,.,

&ttin' better man: Oasis ushers in new era
with confident, experimental 'Be Here Now'

Oasis
Be Here Now
Epic
Iriedrich Nietzsche once posited that
whatever doesn't kill you makes you
stronger. While this philosophy is often
espoused- and misappropriated- by
drunken keg warriors who puke all over
themselves and then try to go back for
more Beast, in this case of Oasis this
rings true.
Since the Manchester, England, quin-
tet's-sophomore album, 1995's "(What's
*'Story) Morning Glory?," Oasis has
faced numerous obstacles in its megalo-
maniacal quest to become the "biggest
band in the world." Bassist Paul
"Guigsy" McGuigan has overcome a
case of nervous exhaustion so severe he
couldn't move; lead singer Liam
Gallagher can't walk outside of his
house without a million tabloid cameras
flashing in his face; and Liam and his
older brother/Oasis mastermind Noel
into another battle of fraternal
cuffs in September 1996, causing the

band to cancel its remaining U.S. tour
dates and nearly break up altogether.
Despite these myriad setbacks,
Oasis' third album, "Be Here Now,"
finds the band brimming with confi-
dence, vigor and, of course, tuneful-
ness. The album opener and first single,
"D'You Know What I Mean?,"
features Alan White's
patient yet powerful
drumming, as well as
Noel and Paul
"Bonehead" Arthur's
swirling, psychedelic_
guitar handiwork. Oh
yeah, it also bursts
with serious cocksure
attitude, emanating
from Liam's voice the sec-
ond he opens his mouth,
which - coupled with the fact that
it's damn catchy - has been known to
polarize listeners Stateside into choos-
ing a love-'em-or-hate-'em stance.
"My Big Mouth" follows, rocking
harder than anything on "Morning
Glory?" or Oasis' debut album, 1994's
"Definitely Maybe." First unveiled at
last summer's massive U.K. concerts at

Loch Lomond and Knebworth (and
locally at The Palace last August), "My
Big Mouth" surprisingly finds Noel
poking fun at himself: "Into my big
mouth / You could fly a plane." Noel
then assumes lead vocal duty in the
slowly unfolding and increasingly
enjoyable "Magic Pie," adding
some tenderness that Liam
occasionally lacks. Like
most songs on the
album, "Magic Pie" is
lengthy - it clocks in
at more than seven
minutes - but also
quite gripping.
"Stand By Me"
achieves quite a high
level of grace for a song
that begins "Made a meal and
threw it up on Sunday I've / Gotta lot
of things to learn." Liam sings wonder-
fully and harmonizes with Noel's back-
ing vocals quite well. Furthermore, the
string arrangements afforded by Oasis'
previous successes add much warmth to
the lovely song. "I Hope, I Think, I
Know" has already been dismissed by
See RECORDS, Page 24A

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