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January 27, 1998 - Image 5

Resource type:
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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-01-27

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I

Now

Ur tdIthauftI

Tom Hanks' rockin' directorial debut "That Thing You Do!" shows
tonight at the U Club. For $1, you can check out the '60s action
as the pop group The Wonders skyrocket from obscurity to super-
stardom. Starring Hanks, Liv Tyler and Tom Everett Scott, the film
offers a glimpse of a bygone era. The fun begins at 9 tonight.

. Y ,
t
n .
D f+, .

Tuesday
January 27, 1998

eey
*Sex, dialogue drive WB's brilliantly hormonal Dawson'.::

By Michael Galloway
Daily Arts Writer
"Dawson's Creek" is like a postcard. The city in
the photograph seems beautiful, interesting and
clean. The reality is most often dirtier, more boring
and uglier, but those aren't the qualities you would
look for in a post card.
The W B network's newest, and quite honestly, best
show presents a picture-perfect version of reality. It's
S not fake so much as it has been doctored for aesthet-
ic effect.
For instance, the fictional
setting of "Dawson's Creek" is
somewhere outside of Boston.
The show is actually shot in
scenic Wilmington, N.C.
The suburban protagonist is
Dawson Leery (James Van Der j.
Beek), a film buff and x
Spielberg fan who is beginning
*to realize that there is more to -
life than movies.
This realization is setting in
slowly, particularly in regard to ~
sex. "If sex is so important,
then how come Spielberg has-
n't had a sex scene in one of his
movies?" he asks.
While that might be an inter-
esting point, it's a little unbe- "Dawson's" beauti
lievable that Dawson is so Jackson, Katie Hol
*prudish about the subject, his Beek and Michelle
parents certainly aren't. In fact,
Dawson has to knock every time he enters a room in
his house, as the love life of his parents (John Wesley

Shipp, Mary-Margaret Humes) is quite active and comic relief, a sort of Jughead to Dawson's Archie.
spontaneous. What keeps this show from becoming an "Archie"
His lifelong friend, Josephine "Joey" Potter (Katie comic book is the intelligent and eloquent dialogue
Holmes), certainly isn't squea- provided by the show's produc-
mish about sex and talks openly er, Kevin Williamson.
about it, especially in reference to R E V [ W Williamson scripted
Dawson's genitalia. "Scream" and "Scream 2," the
Joey comes from a troubled Dawson's Creek blockbusters that revived the
home life, though you couldn't jY * horror movie genre. "Dawson's
tell that by looking at her. Stirring Creek" is a welcome addition to
physical attraction between her The W8, Tuesdays at 9 p.m. these youth -angst melodramas,
and Dawson such as "Party of Five" and

threaten to complicate their
friendship.
The traditional love triangle
plot is completed when the
luminous Jennifer Lindley
(Michelle Williams), moves
into the community. Dawson
becomes instantly smitten.
Jennifer has much more sexual
experience than does the vir-
ginal Dawson. He doesn't
know just how much experi-
ence at first, but he finds out in
a future episode.
Also in contrast to the intro-
spective and coquettish
Dawson is his other best friend
people: Joshua Pacey (Joshua Jackson).
s, James Van Der Pacey is so witty and outgo-
liams. ing that he hits on one of his
teachers and is successful in his
seduction, making this subplot the show's most dar-
ing and controversial aspect. Pacey is the hormonal

"Beverly Hills 90210."
But the same dialogue that raises the show above
its predecessors seems out of place coming from 15-
year-olds.
Williamson sees these characters as "typical" high
school freshmen, which make the average high
school experiences seem pretty atypical.
There weren't any fashion models who spoke like
college graduates where I went to school, but maybe
I should have gone to high school filmed in
Wilmington, N.C.
Cynicism and bitterness aside, "Dawson's Creek"
is an entertaining show and will probably be a big
hit. Considering its time slot, the show has little to
worry about from the competition.
"Frasier" (NBC) and "Home Improvement"
(ABC) both target older audiences and are half-hour
shows. The show's only real obstacle is that word
might spread slowly since so few people watch the
WB.
But the WB needn't worry. "Dawson's Creek" has
beautiful people talking very openly about sex - a
tried-and-true audience grabber.

ful
me
W

MR.
James Van Der Beek and Katie Holmes star In The WB's beautiful "Creek."

Washington
.scandal
fuels hype
Los Angeles Times
Sex allegations that have engulfed the
White House mirror plot twists in the
new movie "Wag the Dog" and the
upcoming "Primary Colors," prompting
he question: Will the media frenzy help
drive audiences to see films about phi-
landering politicians?
New Line Cinema, the producer of
"Wag the Dog," says media coverage has
increased its movie's profile, but that
timeliness also may be a liability.
"There's no question there possibly is
a negative because of real-life events,"
said Mitch Goldman, New Line's presi-
dent of marketing and distribution.
"There is a danger that people who see
'Nightline' three days in a row may not
want to go see 'Wag the Dog.' But this is
a comedy. There is a big difference
between the two."
Ticket sales for "Wag the Dog" were
up 7 percent Wednesday and Thursday
immediately following reports about the
alleged affair between President Clinton
and former White House intern Monica
Lewinsky.
But other movies also performed well
*n those two nights.
It was too early to say whether the
scandal would have any impact on the
film, said Al Shapiro, president of
domestic distribution for New Line.
"It does not look like major benefits,"
he said, although in Washington D.C.,
ticket sales for the weekend were up
about 5 percent from the previous week.
Overall, "Wag the Dog" was expected
to gross $4.7 million from Friday
*hrough Sunday at the North American
box office, down a moderate 27 percent
from the previous weekend, which
counts for four days because of the
#e e
in Thu.s ays:
Daily fog.r
*behind tih scefl0 .
look at ire Mone
ea Mhibit.

Pepsi, Intel commercials prove'
less than super during Bowl 2

The spin doctors of "Wag the Dog" are concerned with the president's "improper
relationships," a plot that is hitting a little too close to home for some.

Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday.
At one local theater, several patrons
said news reports made them more inter-
ested in "Wag the Dog."
"I just read in today's (Los Angeles)
Times that it's the same type of story as
what's happening in the White House,"
Kay Mason said as she went into a
Friday showing of the movie. "So now I
want to see it more than ever."
"Wag the Dog," which stars Dustin
Hoffman and Robert De Niro, shares a
passing similarity to the Clinton allega-
tions.
The movie president does something
unseemly with a young "Firefly Girl"
visiting the White House just 1l1 days
before an election.
Hollywood producer Stanley Motss
(Hoffman) and political consultant
Conrad Brean (De Niro) are called in to
divert the public's attention from the
scandal, and together they concoct a war
with Albania.
New Line said it would not change its
advertising or release plans for the polit-
ical satire.
Nevertheless, one major newspaper
ad was altered. In the new ad appearing
Saturday in The Los Angeles Times, a
background of the White House was

added behind a picture of Hoffman, De
Niro and co-star Anne Heche.
New Line also added a new review
quote that read: "The action starts with a
crisis in the White House!" A New Line
spokesman declined to comment on the
changes Saturday.
Marvin Worth, the veteran producer
of "Malcolm X" and "Patty Hearst,"
said the flood of Clinton stories is dimin-
ishing his interest in films with political
subplots, such as "Primary Colors."
"It makes me less inclined to see it.
Because I want to see a movie, I don't
want to see a headline," Worth said.
Universal Pictures declined to discuss
its marketing plans for "Primary
Colors," which opens nationwide on
March 20.
Adapted from the best-selling roman a
clef, the movie stars John Travolta as a
Southern governor running for president
with a history of extramarital affairs.
In an interview before the Clinton
allegations surfaced, "Primary Colors"
director Mike Nichols said the movie
was more about voters than politicians:
"What has happened to us since the
1970s in terms of what we want and
what we get and what we put our leaders
through?"

By Geordy Gantsoudes
Daily Arts Writer
For the first time in recent memory, the commercials
Sunday night were not as interesting as the Super Bowl. With
John Elway leading the Denver Broncos to the AFC's first
Super Bowl victory in 14 tries, the commercials just seemed
secondary. There was no clear winner in the biggest four
hours of the advertisement year.
If a winner had to be chosen by default, the prize would go
to Anheiser-Busch, the makers of Budweiser. The four install-
ments of the "Death of the Frogs," were the highlight of the
evening. The gangster iguana's attempt to assassinate of the
frogs failed when he hired a ferret to do a weasel's job.
Anheiser-Busch also scored with two Bud Light ads. One
commercial featured a man sitting in a department store,
bored out of his mind while his girlfrieid tries on numerous
dresses. He hears someone signaling from the petite rack.
When he enters he finds himself in an entertainment Mecca
complete with TV, grill and loungers.
The other featured a man with a chicken. The man walks
up to another man playing pool and bets the pool player a Bud
Light that his chicken can beat him in a pool game. The
chicken begins shooting eggs out of its body in a hilarious
manner. The chicken wins and is next seen at a bowling alley
attempting to hustle a bowler out of his Bud Light. The com-
mercial ends as the chicken loudly squawks, anticipating the
sheer force required to knock down the pins.
Other highlights included a hilarious spin on the Nike "I
Can" campaign. The ad featured the cast of NBC's
"Working" performing acts of office mischief with subtitles
such as "I Can ... photocopy my face," appearing under the
action.
Maybe the clever advertising will save the struggling com-
edy. If the advertising is indicative of the writing on the show,
the show has hope.
A long-awaited three-quel was the next in a series of clay-
mation Lipton Brisk Iced Tea ads. The first was a hilarious
take on the living legend, Frank Sinatra, The follow-up was a
perfectly voiced "Rocky" commercial.
In each, our hero is bereft of energy, until he consumes
Brisk Iced Tea. The latest spot featured no less than six
Yankees, past and present. Babe Ruth is our hero this time;
the audience knows he is out of energy when he is so tired
that the bat slips out of his hands and nearly decapitates a
whining George Steinbrenner. Reggie Jackson saves the day

Intel premiered a new interactive ad campaign featuring a .;y
mysterious theft and the funky "Bunny People."
when he gives Ruth an iced tea. Ruth smacks a homer an
utters the catch phrase: "That's Brisk Baby!"
The tube was cluttered with numerous below average Pepv,
ads, the worst one featured a mosquito singing The Rolling
Stones hit "Brown Sugar." It was no match for the oldie-tut~
goodie Tabasco ad featuring an exploding mosquito who~.
snacks on a man after he eats a Tabasco heavy dinner.
Another lackluster spot featured the space-suited IntN~
"Bunny People" and the voice of Steve Martin in an interao.a4
tive whodunit, which offered viewers the chance to identifVf
the culprit online. But the ad didn't offer any sort of entce .
tainment value.
Even though the night featured two failed celebrity ads .
(one with Michael Richards and Elvis -guess he's 1%
dead), overall, the night was a success. With no clear-cub~
commercial standouts, it was not a great night for advertiser
but a great night for football fans.
uttes te cach hras: "hat' Brsk Bby!

I I I MINERVARNM

Clear
ndi sputabe
Logical
Proof

4
'W
The Academy of American Poets Prize
The Bain-Swiggett Poetry Prize
The Michael R. Gutterman Award in Poetry,
The Roy W. Cowden Memorial Fellowship:,,
The Louise and George Piranian
Scholarship
will be announced
Tuesday, January 27
3:30 p.m.
Rackham Auditorium
Rpwiinn by Gace Pale

I

The Princeton Review's national
MI(AT

....,

I ".*

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