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February 06, 2006 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2006-02-06

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Monday
February 6, 2006
arts.michigandaily.com
artspage@michigandaily.com

RlSe idigan 3tilg

5A

lust call it a 0Pretentious chair shots

Three times in the past month, a
relatively sane group of college
boys (myself chief among them)
relaxing at a random party were coaxed
into a fiery, unhinged bout of nostalgia
and zeal (complete with-
howled catchphrases and
drunken imitations) at
the mere mention of one
word: Wrestling.<
But why, when The Rock
is now a C-list Hollywood
freak? Why, when the
beer-fueled war machine
and culturally transcendent
Stone Cold Steve Austin is
old, and one bad "bump" Evp
(the term used for any
fall) away from a wheel- MCGA
chair. Why, when Shawn
Michaels, who in the mid-'80s gyrated
around the ring in chaps, is a born-again
Christian who often refuses storylines he
deems too scandalous.
Because aside from our heroic nostal-
gia, wrestling is interesting at its core.
Defending wrestling breaks down like
this. It's fake; everyone knows that. Get
over it. You know how "Swan Lake" is
going to end, too.
Physical storytelling, the tight choreo-

graphing of moves, the amazing ability
the performers have to not kill each other
while making it look like they actually
are - these are the qualities that make
wrestling entertaining, and, yes, perhaps
a bit deeper than you think.
If you like huge wrestlers,
titanic, impressive production
values and plots that blend
surprising amounts of drama
with actual wrestling, World
Wrestling Entertainment - a
longtime industry giant -
looms large. The second major
American promotion, Total
Nonstop Action, has skimpier
sets and stories, but makes
N up for it with an athletic style
RVEY heavily influenced by Mexi-

FA
AR

they'd remade "Breakfast at Tiffany's" with gaucho pants
and shorter cigarettes.
But at least the girl is hot.
Jill Johnson (Camilla Belle, "The Ballad of Jack and
Rose") is stuck babysitting at a lake house 30 minutes
from civilization. As she sits alone in the cavernous house,
someone begins calling every 15 minutes. He grows
increasingly creepy. At first, he says nothing, and only
breathes heavily on the other end. Then he asks who she
is. Then he begins to leave subtle hints that he can see her.
Then she finds a body. Etcetera. You can fill in the rest.
The digital-age reconstruction of a hackneyed plot fails
to breathe any new life into the comatose American hor-

"Hi, I'm calling for Lavalife. Is this where I can meet hundreds of attractive singles in my area?"

ror-movie dynasty. It consists of the same camera tricks,
creepy musical flourishes, false alarms and attractive
young women (who always manage to get wet) seen in
any other teen horror film of the past few years.
That said, the movie does manage to create some sem-
blance of fright. For a few moments, when the killer's
location is revealed, we find ourselves clenching our
sodas with slightly whiter fists. Director Simon West
("Lara Croft: Tomb Raider") makes good use of corpses,
and the house itself, in all its ruthless geometric moder-
nity, adds to the suspense.

But a few scares cannot make up for all the horrible
dialogue, the laughably pointless ending, the subpar per-
formance of a fledgling actress and all the unendurable
corn. The heavy breathing into the phone, for example, is
so ridiculous that the audience might be let down to real-
ize the killer is not, in fact, Darth Vader.
The writers, in an apparent act of desperation, also
throw in a couple of Christ references. Just after the open-
ing sequence, the camera pans to a neon sign in the middle
of a fallen little town that reads "Jesus Saves."
Films like this make us wonder, "Does he?"

can and Japanese techniques.
OK, OK, maybe that's more about
wrestling than you wanted to know.
The point is, cut us some slack. At
least we're not into meth!
And besides, if I pretend to care
about "Grey's Anatomy" (OMG! I'm
totally a doctor!), the least you can do is
tolerate a few chair shots.
- McGarvey leaps off chairs when
wasted. E-mail evanbmcg@umich.edu.

YJoaii ST

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me's Day" Skate
i, February 9th
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st Ice Arena
ets to a Miehigan
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eIve $1 off admission 3825 Carpenter Rd
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All Michigan Students are invited to play tennis with
The Varsity Men's Tennis Team and The Michigan
Ctu bTemor free, we'll even eedyou

wartH Boa hava
oa thiz aa hara?

(if you were the new ad layout
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in out!

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