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March 11, 2008 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2008-03-11

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8 - Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com


"No, I would not like a fucking apple pie with that."
Statham shines as leading man in'Job'
"The Bank Job"
At Showcase and Quality 16
A unique spin on heist flicks, "The Bank Job" is surprisingly dour, yet
ultimately clever escapism. Based in part on true events, several real
occurrences from 1970s Britain come together in an unbelievably dodgy
bank robbery.
Terry Leather (Jason Statham, "Transporter 2") is a down-and-out
car dealer desperate for dough. With a dopey crew and the aid of for-
mer squeeze Martine (the beautiful Saffron Burrows, "Reign Over Me"),
Leather and his gang uncover alot of mad secrets in a bank vault.
The plot is awfully stretched. Take these parts for example: Princess
Margaret may have been ruining affairs. Numerous crooked coppers were
busted after proof of pornographer payoffs surfaced. Michael X, the Brit-
ish counterpart to Malcolm, was involved in some shady guerilla business.
And in1971the Lloyds Bank of Baker Street, London, was robbed. No arrests
were ever made in the case. All true events linked somehow to the robbery.
Is it coincidence that these all happened at the same time? "Bank Job"
seems to think so, and it's far-fetched fun. Heist traits aside, Statham,
thank goodness, becomes a real leading man and it's nice to see him in a
non-idiotic, monosyllabic action (like in "Crank," "War" or "Snatch").
Sloppy and at times a bit harsh for the action-craving patron, "Job"
still more or less delivers. By subverting the trappings of the thief movie,
giving it swanky '70s London flair and having curious historical context,
"Bank Job" is a smashing good show.

Why it's a bad idea to skimp on plastic surgery.


Amodern fairy tale

Finding love is
tough when you
have a snout for
a nose
Daily Arts Writer
What exactly is a fairy tale
movie? Images of Disney prin-
cesses and white knights come to
mind, but mov-
ies like those
childhood sta-
ples don't exist Penelope
anymore. And
in today's world, AtShowcase
it's hard to blend and Quality16
together the Summit
right mix of indi- Entertainment
vidualism, cyni-
cism and happily-ever-after into a
truly winning "modern fairy tale."
"Penelope" comes close, but when
the genre is still being defined, it
still shows some holes and cracks.
Cursed with a pig's snout and

locked up to avoid the inevi-
table finger-pointing and ridi-
cule, Penelope's (Christina Ricci,
"Black Snake Moan") only hope to
lead a normal life is to find some-
one "of her own kind" to love and
marry. Penelope's mother, (Bar-
bara O'Hara, "For Your Consider-
ation") tries to set her up with blue
bloods and rich men, all of whom
flee tne room after first seeing her.
That is until Max (James McAvoy,
"Atonement") appears.
Max, in order to be the typical,
modern-dayPrince Charming, has
his own problems, namely a gam-
bling habit. His need for money
leads him to Lemon (Peter Din-
klage, "Elf"), a reporter hoping to
make it big with Penelope's pic-
ture. Betrayed, Penelope flees her
house and comes, of course, into
her own.
Discoveringnew places and peo-
ple is a key element to all fairy tales,
and Penelope does it on the streets
ofthe big city. She explores circuses,
zoos and aquariums - all the excit-
ing sights of a new city without the
dirt underneath. "Penelope" uses a

combination of London streets and
New York skyscrapers elements to
create an unfamiliar and whimsical
world. The fact that the cast is a mix
of British and Americans helps the
film, as does McAvoy's impressive,
though unnecessary, American
"Penelope" does well mixing
the fantasy and the real, but can-
not overcome its own basic flaws.
Ricci's Penelope is not monster
enough to scare anyone away, nor
is she whimsically light enough
to really have fun with the part.
Even O'Hara, a comedic genius,
falls flat when she's forced to take
on the role of the "wicked mother,"
and because she's trying to protect
Penelope from the cruelty of the
world, she ends up also stifling
Penelope's spirit. And then, like
"Beauty and the Beast" before it,
there is the underlying complica-
tion: If a person loves you just the
way you are, what happens when
what made you extraordinary dis-
appears once the curse is lifted?
The movie's themes of self-
image and self-love are important

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lake a bite out of the Big Apple and have a taste of your dream
career in the city that never sleeps. We're taking
all the excitement of the Michigan Apprentice
program on the road to New York City. Four
Lucky Michigan students will have the
opportunity of a lifetime, spending
a day shadowing high-
profile alumni.

and to the point, as is the need
to stay true to oneself In these
regards, the movie does well in
keeping the cloying until the very
last scene. It is here that children
sit around and guess the moral of
the fairy tale. Yes, all stories have a
lesson to be learned, but never has
there been a need to spell it out,
just in case the audience missed it.
It is an unnecessary ending, tak-
ing away from the vibrancy of the
movie and a really good kiss that
ended the previous scene.
Like "Enchanted" before it,
"Penelope" has the usual fairytale
elements, but the need to make the
formula more realistic comes into
play. Girls cannot be purely res-
cued; boys can't be truly perfect;
happily-ever-after can't be a given
- these changes are all accepted at
face value today. So Penelope does
some of her own rescuing, Max
finds his way back to himself and
the "happily-ever-after" becomes
a "so far, so good." It's a little sad,
completely expected and becom-
ing an accepted genre - welcome
to the "modern fairytale."
From Page 5
behind her usurpation of Mary
as Henry's favorite young thing
are never completely revealed.
Revenge on her sister, wanton
ambition or actual love for Henry
- it's really anyone's guess.
Nevertheless, Portman can't be
blamed for holes in the story. At
least she tries to do something
with what she's given, switch-
ing Anne's personality from pure
and coy to vicious and calculat-
ing with relative ease. While
she's unable to truly humanize
Anne, Portman still emerges the
stronger actress of the two. In
comparison, Johanson stands
stagnant, with a Kewpie doll
expression on her face, while
the action moves around her.
It wouldn't have hurt to bring
a little personality to Mary, the
milder sister, but Johansson's
difficulties are also a reflection
The Boleyn girl:
as bad as Britney
Spears minus
the drugs
of poor casting decisions. The
girl is known for certain things,
and her relatively poor English
accent isn't one of them. Johans-
son is a sexpot trapped in a
demure role.
We all know the end of this
(somewhat fictionalized) history
lesson. It's hardly surprising, or
even really that sad, to discover
that there's no happy conclusion
to this story. Tragic finales are
less moving when a character
has been a total pill, or reallybor-
ing for most of the film. "Boleyn
Girl," at best, is somewhat enter-
taining, but it does serve some
worthwhile purpose. After all,
the movie isn't about love, poli-
tics or even really about his-
tory. It's an exploration of how
a seemingly good family could
fall into disgrace. Dynamics of
a focked-up family are always

interesting. Nothing quite says
"family issues" like shades of
adultery, treason and (almost)
incest. The next time you want
to complain about your nagging
mom or annoying brother, just
remember: It could be worse.

If you're a junior or senior you could be one of the lucky four
selected for an all-expenses-paid one-day internship in New York
with one of these Michigan success stories:

Marketing: Lisa Weiss, '92, senior marketing manager for Elite
Law: Samantha Mahoney , '91, New York commercial
litigation attorney
Finance: Todd Rosenbluth, '97, Wall Street equity analyst at
Standard and Poor's
Journalism: Bill Schmidt, '67, and Richard Berke, '80, assistant
managing editors at The New York Times
he application deadline is Wednesday, March 26.
3et detaiLs on how to appLy at
vww.umaLumn.Com/students. ALUMNI ASSOCIATION



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