The Michigan Daily - michigandaily~comn
Monday, February 11, 2008 - 5A
Like G-Unit, only not terrible.
thrives on ne
By CHRIS GAERIG
With all of the heat that main-
stream hip hop has felt in the past
several years about increasingly
violent topics, misogyny and ram-
pant drug references, the Virgin-
ian rhyming duo Clipse - Malice
and Pusha T - stands firmly as
a middle finger to the FCC and
musical do-gooders. Their bom-
and street crime
phine as some of Re-Up Gang
the most sadisti- We Got It 4
cally hypnotic Cheap Vol. 3
songs being Self-released
released - to
say nothing of
the razor-sharp flows, wordplay
and production. And while a num-
ber of similar artists have tried to
wash their image of its morally
hazy aspects, Clipse has continued
to produce the same high-octane
talesofcracksales and fatalattacks,
even outright boasting: "We been
consistent since day one."
Their latest release We Got It 4
Cheap Vol. 3 - undeservingly car-
rying a byline ofthe group's obliga-
tory crew the Re-Up Gang - is an
extension of the mixtape series
Clipse began before its long-await-
ed 2006, major-record release
Hell Hath No Fury. Only this time
around, rather than copping the
golden beats of the mainstream
radiowaves - hence the series's
moniker - Clipse opts for a spat-
tering of original beats and flashy
And it's exactly this schematic
denial that makes Vol. 3 so incred-
ible. A group that has often used
the best production from hip hop's
biggest producers, namely the
Pharrell Williams-led Neptunes,
the duo's recent mixtapes have
been limited by the stolen beats
of its contemporaries. It would be
naive to assume Clipse, or any rap-
per for that matter, has the ability
to recruit big name acts like the
Neptunes for a random mixtape.
Fortunately, they've proven time
and time again that their best work
is done on original beats.
Presented by the now-notori-
ous DJ Drama, Vol. 3 is a behe-
moth of an album, battered by epic
production and searing flows. So
much so, that some might argue
that it is a perfect argument for a
Clipse divorce from the Neptunes
on their next proper release. A
9 majority of the album's tracks
("20k Money Making Brothers On
the Corner," "Dey Know Yayo,"
"Sand Solo" and "Cry Now" to
name a few) feature some of the
offers nothing new
"March Madness '08"
When asports franchise releas-
es a new game every year, there's
a constant struggle to keep things
fresh. "March Madness '08" is
no exception. Everything else is
more or less the same as previous
installments, except maybe the
inclusion of the new body-hug-
ging jerseys real-life players now
wear. The one significant new
element is something called "low-
post play," which translates to
both sides of the ball. on offense,
a host of trick moves ranging
from spins to pump fakes can
be executed, and on defense you
can change your stance to better
on in c'
to the s
for all o
life are f
a min and
Story of tragedy and--
recuperation is one of the
year's best already
PHOTO COURTESY OF CLPSE
/ >> > uoNoah Dean Stahy
du o Arts Writer
rst and most explosive.a
eard in the last several POTOCOURTEtYF MIRAMA
"Congratulations. You've blinked 'Finnegans Wake.'
clanging-gunfire percus- light and a general lack of focus in order to cap- and suffers from a similar sense of isolation as
the aforementioned "20k IHE DIVING BELL AND THE BUTTERfly" ture Bauby's new, ailed circumstances. his age and feeble condition prevent him from
Making Brothers On the rolls hand-written opening credits on a mon- In order to communicate, Bauby's speech leaving his apartment. When he calls Bauby
is the epitome of Clipse's tage of x-rays accom- pathologist acts as an amanuensis, listing off for the first time since the stroke, unsure of
hile they scream about panied by "La Mer," the alphabet in order of letter frequency until what to say or how to say it, Papinou breaks
elling and impeccable a French rendition ** ** * Bauby blinks, indicating the intended letter. down in what is one of the few overt displays
Raising the bar, I'm Tiger of "Beyond the Sea." Since Bauby is unable to speak, a voice-over of emotion in the film. It is also one of the more
ar / I'm the hidden drag- This is the charming if The Diving Bell narration conveys his more personal thoughts stirring moments of a touching film.
rouching tiger with that incongruent beginning and the Butterfly to the audience, including the guilty pleasure As the film progresses, Bauby, through
The string-heavy "Sand to a story of oppressive he gets from being washed like a baby and his his speech pathologist, contacts a publish-
tands in stark contrast isolation. Jean-Domi- Michigan Theatre propensity for the breasts of his orderlies. ing house with which he has a book contract.
teel power of "20k" but nique Bauby (Mathieu Miramax Between the mammaries of one his order- Unsure of how to respond to Bauby's request
plays the glossy, flossing Amalric, "Munich"), lies hangs a cross, one of the many lingering to fulfill the contract, the publishers send a
f the duo; while its coun- an upper-class Parisian allusions to religion and spirituality. When stenographer, Claude (Anne Consigny), to
"Liva Solo" harks back to hedonist and editor of Elle, suffers a "cerebro- taken to a nearby church, despite his insis- take laborious dictation through Bauby's
'et grime and rapid-fire vascular accident" resulting in paralysis of his tence upon secularity, he smarmily indicates blinks. The resulting book is "Le Scaphandre
they've become known entire body, save for his left eye. to the priest that many gods around the world et le papillon," the autobiography upon which
smiling, I'm too strong / This dissonance between introduction and are praying for him. We are then transported the film is based.
ing it in this song / Three theme is not disruptive by any means - nor to Lourdes as Bauby recalls a tumultuous visit With respect to the source material, the
ke a right / I'm too right to unintentional - and is recurrent throughout with an ex-girlfriend. Emotionally distant and film's sole shortcoming is its inability to ade-
g / Right in my zone, I'm the film, as the memories and imagination touristically disengaged, he is no doubt selfish quately articulate Bauby's thoughts. His wit
my songs"). of Bauby span far beyond the confines of his and inconsiderate, though, sadly, his situation and inherent knack for crafting beautiful sen-
'thrown into these street- Berck-sur-mer hospital room. is not without empathy or sympathy. tences is muted in the film, simplified for the
In the immediate aftermath of his stroke, Bauby's father Papinou (Max Von Sydow, sake of a subtitle-reading audience.
and the sequential beginning of the film, a first- "The Seventh Seal"), his children and former Directed by Julian Schnabel, whose pri-
person perspective indicates Bauby's struggle common-law wife, Cdline (Emmanuelle Sei- mary artistic endeavors are in painting, "The
hey're not in opening and focusing his one good eye. gner, "The Ninth Gate"), also enter the story, Diving Sell and the Butterfly" is a beautiful,
Beautifully shot, this scene, and many others, both through memories and visits. Papinou, deliberately crafted work of art that perme-
terested in employs the use of frequent cuts, overexposed also emotionally disinclined, is in his nineties ates the sensibility of true solitude.
beats is the Kanye West
"Good Morning." A track r
es a throbbing bass and
ted snares, it stands apart
e rest of the .album and
he only lull on Vol. 3. And
its placement on the disc
wkward and when Mal-
tes, "I'm bored by my so-
eers" and "You ain't gotta
who I'm better than,"
s as a slap in the face to
he oft-thought king of con- *
ry hip hop. Unfortunately,
iing tracks "Emotionless"
y Dayz" look to deny his" T HROUGH A LONG, PAINFUL PERSONAL JOURNEY,
shattered hopes and rude awakenings, most of us realize by about
not altogether abhorret the age of 14 that the majority of movies that come out each year
it they clearly stand out as are not very good. We don't need critics to pan garbage like "Meet
est and driest cuts on the the Spartans" or for our friends to tell us
that the new Paris Hilton movie is terrible
of It 4 Cheap Vol. 3 is ulti- we just know. *
ust an exercise for Clipse And so, you don't really need me to tell
south-watering appetizer you that "Welcome Home Roscoe Jen- Welcome Home
f the group's fans. As with w kins," a sort of comedy starring Martin ROSCOE Jenkins
tapes, this disc will be , .; Lawrence, is atrocious. But allow me to do "
by the mainstream, left for A so anyway. At Quality 16
Is to worship and some- A m abk 'dg9m, Lawrence (who in better days starred and Showcase
tide them over until the : PHOTO COURTESY OF UNIVERSAL in legitimate popcorn fare like "Bad Boys" Universal
)per release. But as artists ABOVE: "This is what you get for making a movie this bad." and "Blue Streak") plays Dr. R.J. Stevens,
Wayne leave their mark RIGHT: White suits: still tacky even when you're rich. a very successful TV talk show host with a
scene with similar free, bestselling book called "Team of Me" that
-only releases - and given : i outlines his view on life. As that title may suggest, R.J. has some turbulent record-label his- e V r £ ..7 h o m e personal issues that he has repressed in order to create this popu-
'ol. 3 is more a full-length, " lar celebrity persona,
ledged release than it ; R.J. is actually short for Roscoe Jenkins, the product of a tradi-
e been seen as in the past. is w h e re th e h e a rt is?. tional Southern black family where the father is strict and tough
a again, the best things in (and played by Michigan alum James Earl Jones, the voice of
'ree. Darth Vader), the siblings are big, scary and rough (Michael Clarke
Latest Martin Lawrence film is a mass of banal Duncan, Cedric the Entertainer and Mo'Nique, in no particular
and bland moralizing order) and the expectations are always through the roof. Roscoe,
jokes an never able to live up to the athletic ability of his big brother Otis
against your opponent. It (Clarke Duncan) or the smarts of his adopted brother Clyde (Ced-
m both sides without feel- > y lmran Syed ric), leaves his family for Hollywood and has no intention of ever
micky. Daily Arts Writer going back.
game does suffer from a See ROSCOE, Page 8A
Vs, such as the propensity ................................................................................................".......................""......."......".."
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for your player to dribble out of
bounds when trying one of these
"low-post" moves anywhere near
the sidelines. Also, the shooting
mechanism is still so simple, it
often feels like dumb luck decides
whether or not you make a shot.
And free throw shooting is ridicu-
lously easy. Eighteen for 18 for the
game? No problem.
It's not as good as "2K8" but if
you squint you won't really notice
the difference. It's solid in execu-
tion, although not revolutionary
by any stretch of the imagination.
When are they going to bring back
shattering the backboard from
Headlining actor can't save
show's tepid storyline
"Welcome to the Captain"
Monday at 8:30pm
We've seen this formula a lot. Networks have been
using familiar faces, like Christina Applegate ('Saman-
tha Who?") and Lucy Liu ("Cashmere Mafia"), to provide
instant credibility to new shows. So Chris Klein ("Amer-
ican Pie") should help CBS's new comedy "Welcome to
the Captain" achieve at least moderate success, right?
Wrong. Instead, he ends up mercilessly killing the
show. Klein plays Marty, the best friend of the show's
protagonist, Josh (newcomer Fran Kranz). Worried
that Josh is becoming too upset over the failure of his
filmmaking career, Marty invites him to move into his
apartment building, appropriately called El Capitan.
The building contains a multitude of strange personal-
ities - like the old guy who wants everyone to call him
"Uncle" and the doorman who goes by Jesus (instead
of "hay-sues"). "The Captain" is based on the their mis-
guided attempts to lift Josh's spirit.
What's unfortunate, though, is that Klein's charac-
ter disrupts everything "The Captain" has going for
it. Marty's lines are so corny and overplayed that it
makes the show almost impossible to watch. It's neces-
sary to keep the remote close by while watching "The
Captain" - this way Klein can be effectively muted. Or
better yet, just change the channel.
Work for our Daily Arts.
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