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October 11, 2007 - Image 13

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The Michigan Daily, 2007-10-11

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The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom

Thursday, October 11, 2007 - 3B

* Authors in A2

aya Angelou needs.
no introduction. The
famed poet will speak
tomorrow afternoon at 1:30 p.m.
at Hill Auditorium as part of this
year's Ross School of Business
reunion activities - and if you can
still scramble and get tickets, it will
definitely be a worthwhile event.
Butit'snotjustonceinabluemoon
that a celebrated writer graces our
acoustically perfect auditorium.
Various University departments
and organi-
zations host
notable author
events, poetry
readings andI
other literary-
minded happen-
ings throughout
the year. (Check KIMBERLY
out the Zell CHOU
Visiting Writer
Series, J. Edgar Edwards reading
Series and Mark Webster Read-
ing Series schedules on the Eng-
lish department website, www.lsa.
umich.edu/english).
Combined with the impressive
list of names Shaman Drum and
Borders pulls in from all over the
country, each year's calendar of
literary events shows Ann Arbor
has-a pretty decent scene.
Non-fiction writer and Harp-
er's Magazine contributing editor
Tom Bissell came to Borders last
year, and so did sports/pop culture
iconoclast Chuck Klosterman.

ber until he canceled because of
"a broken foot." But English Prof.
Laura Kasischke did read at Sha-
man Drum to promote the release
of her novel "Be Mine," which Ellis
is currently converting to screen-
play.
Some of the best readings fea-
ture the University's own, like
Kasischke (who also holds an MFA
degree from the University). Eng-
lish Prof. Linda Gregerson released
her poetry collection "Magnetic
North" in March, accompanied by
a reading.
Here are a few upcoming events
to check out, hitting all the bases:
AT THE UNIVERSITY:
The Fourth Annual Janey Lack
Reading:
Charles "Ambrosio
Today, 5 p.m. at Rackham
Amphitheater
The Whiting Award winner and
PEN/Faulkner finalist will read
later today
AT SHAMAN DRUM:
"What Do Gay Men Want?"
David Halperin
Tuesday, 4 p.m. Oct. 23 at Sha-
man Drum
Shaman Drum Bookshop
Most famous for teaching "How
to be Gay" course - fantastic pro-
fessor.
AT BORDERS:
Wes Anderson and Jason

PHOTOS COURTESY OF PARAMOUNT AND WARNER BROS.
FROM LEFT: Robert Downey Jr. in the last moment of the 'Iron Main" trailer before we see too much; "The Dark Night," enigmaic, simple - just as it should be;
the trailer for "The Departed" revealed a key character's fate long before the film opened.
For trailers, it's too much, too soon

By MITCHELL AKSELRAD
DailyArts Writer
Plentyofpeople swearbyDVDs,
but there are a few key aspects
of a trip to the cinema that sets
the experience apart: the taste of
movie-theater popcorn, the sta-
dium seating and, of course, the
trailers. You'd never be late for a
movie not because you might miss
the opening sequence but because
you could might the chance to rate
the really kick-ass trailers that
come a few minutes before.
Butincreasinglyin recentyears,
trailers have been the cause of
much discontent in the filmgoing
community. Simply put, they give
away too much. Plot points, sur-
prise cameos and stunningspecial
effects that would otherwise wow
the unsuspecting spectator are all
parts of a film you don't want to
know about before a full-length
viewing.
Consider the newly released
trailer for "Iron Man." It shows
the film's protagonist, Tony Stark,
in pre-superhero form. Fine. Then
it shows why he's forced to build
an Iron Man suit. Still, it's OK.
Then it actually reveals the first
suit, a crude creation made from
metal scraps that prove sufficient
enough to take out an army of ter-
rorists. And then it keeps going,

c
. t
Yale
ning p
Shama
tionar

Schwartzman
Oct. 15 6 p.m. at Borders
-t r The esteemed independent film-
maker and the actor who stars in
and helped write his new film "The
Darjeeling Limited" will appear.
Ann Arbor. OK, so these guys aren't authors
per se, but they do write for the
screen, and they're as influental as
any of them.
Younger Poets prize-win- And it's at Borders, possibly one
'oet Richard Siken came to of the more anticipated crowded
tn Drum, as did the revolu- bookshop Q&As since ... at least
y John Sinclair. Bret Easton the Klosterman one.

divulging Stark's character trans-
formation and the second, much
more stylizedversion of the super-
hero costume. It shows the second
suit in action; we see it fly thou-
sands of feet in the air and engage
in aerial combat with a couple of
fighter jets. Now we've basically
seen 90 percent of the film.
The point of a trailer is to
entice the audience, and it would
be naive to expect producers to
save all the best material for the
actual cinematic experience. But
how many people have eagerly
waited for the next Judd Apatow
or Vince Vaughn comedy, paid an
insane $10 to see it and then found
they're not even laughing because
all the funny jokes were featured
in a preview that came out last
spring? Or take the summer block-
buster, when you can predict every
single stunt the main characters
are going to perform because all
the leap-through-midair-over-an-
exploding-bridge sequences have
graced screens across America for
the past eight months.
Of course, it doesn't help
that some cinefiles feel the
need to download the new-
est teasers the minute they
premiere online, or that
many attend conferences like
Comic-Con to see freshly
edited spots made to whet

that only suggest the film's subject.
Don *'t gve it all Then surprise the audience with
themovielogooracatchphrase(re:
away at once. the terrific teaser for "The Dark
Knight"). Orgo the opposite route:
Start the trailer with a familiar
image, actor or piece of music - as
the appetite of a few fanboys. But long as it's something that won't
even if you're not one of those peo- give away more than the premise
ple, you still probably watch tele- - to get the collective heart rate
vision. Studios might only show a of the audience going (the first
selection of the movie's defining trailer of "Superman Returns,"
moments in one theatrical trailer, "Fred Claus" or "Collateral"). And
but they'll definitely show the for films with nobuilt-in audience,
rest over the course of 17 different sell the people on a short clip that
TV spot". By the time you see the tells them why that movie is dif-
aptual movie, it's all d/jhvu. ferent from anything else they've
"There is no terror in the bang, seen. All it takes is a few shots, a
only in the anticipation of it," the few lines and a few set pieces.
director Alfred Hitchcock once What we don't need is that
said. Well, we're all terrified that same voice-over artist telling
we can't enjoy a goddamn movie us, "In a world where ... one man
moment because we're already dares to ... "That line's been said
anticipating its surprise. more times than I've seen a cer-
But something can be done to tain character from "The Depart-
remedy this problem. If a studio ed" fall from the roof in theteaser,
is trying to market a movie with a theatrical trailer and TV spots
fan baseit should show a fewshots combined. It sucks when you
and play a few clips of dialogue know what's goingto happen.

Ellis - the favorite author of many
a jaded underclassman - was slat-
ed to read from his midlife crisis
novel "Lunar Park" last Septem-

- Chou wants to start a book
club. Want to join? E-mail her
at kimberch@umich.edu.

t

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