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November 23, 2010 - Image 8

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2010-11-23

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8 - Tuesday, November 23, 2010.

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Somebody
needs to stop
Keha now

Side
Ke$ha's
include
up for
secutivi
It's not
a surpr
that th
tures
lyrics
"Now t
up my
eat you
just can
("Sleazy
Othe
nibal in
R Who
getting
October
Sid
in(
ar
played
total ea
unfortu
ple seer
singing

By JASMINE ZHU like "'Cause we make the hipsters
DailyArts Writer fall in love / And we've got hot
pants on enough." Whatever that
effects of listening to means. At this point, the drunken
new EP, Cannibal, may revelers usually high-five each
throwing other and then fall over.
30 con- But wait. Ke$ha takes a moment
e minutes. to slow it down and get real seri-
much of Ke$ha ous for the track "C U Next Toes-
ise, given day," which is as close to a power
e EP fea- Cannibal EP ballad as she's ever going to get.
inspired RCA The vulgar double entendre in the
such as title also showcases Ke$ha's flair
:hat I'm famous / You're for the obvious. Essentially, Ke$ha
anus / Now I'm going to just whines about some guy who
,fool" ("Cannibal") and "I has a girlfriend (in her trademark
't date a dude with a vag" Uffie knock-off vocals), but she's
y"). still hooking up with him anyways
r priceless gems on Can- 'cause she's just that crazy.
clude the hit single "We All of these insipid lyrics are -
We R," which has been of course - backed by a healthy
non-stop radio play since dose of Auto-Tune and whatever
r. This song has also been electro beats are designed to get
the kids bumping and grinding.
As expected, Ke$ha hasn't evolved
from her "crazy party girl" ways,
e effects may lyrically or otherwise. Her favor-
ite look these days mainly con-
sists of glitter, ripped tights and
unwashed hair, as referenced in
"We R Who We R": "I've got that
glitter on my eyes, / Stockings
ripped all up the side / Looking
- either ironically or in sick and sexy-fied." So typical of
arnestness - at a lot of someone who was born at a party.
nate college parties. Peo- She's unstoppable, dude.
m to take great delight in Except someone should really
along to ingenious lines stop her. Seriously.

The siege of DirecTV's headquarters escalated quite quickly.
Beyond the 'Call of Duty'

A slew of new
features is nice,
but not essential
By SHIN HIEFTJE
For theDaily
To describe "Call of Duty: Black
Ops" succinctly: over-the-top.
From its explo-
sion-loving cam-*
paign mode to its
ludicrously in-C
depth multiplay- o
er to its mode Black Ops
wherein you fight Xbox 360,
off hordes of .. '0
zombies as John PS3,Wi,
F. Kennedy, "Call Nintendo
of Duty: Black DS and PC
Ops" has a lot of Actvision
wild things going
on.
First focus must be put on the
multiplayer, since it has been the
main draw of the series ever since
"Call of Duty 4" came out. "Black
Ops" offers a highly customized
play style, with a wealth of options
for weapon loadouts, "perks"
(helpful character traitslike quick-
er reloads or infinite sprint) and
rewards for kill streaks without
dying (including radar and attack
helicopters). The catch is that, like
previous iterations in the series,
very little of this customization is

available at the beginning, as most
abilities and weapons are locked
until you gain enough experience.
In order to get the best gear, per-
sistent play is required
To circumvent this grind, Act-
vision introduced a new concept,
"COD points." COD points serve
as a form of currency earned after
each match, which players use to
buy desired equipment or attach-
ments immediately. COD points
can also be used to buy and alter
cosmetic items, like a character's
personal emblem, gun camouflage
and more.
Further implementation of COD
points comes in the form of wager
matches. The top three players at
the end of the match gain more
points than they put in. Wager
matches are a neat addition to the
series and they comprise some of
the most fun and intense game
types included in "Black Ops." Of
course, there are also the classic
deathmatch and objective-based
modes.
Other multiplayer additions
include a theater mode to view
replays of your matches, a combat
training mode to play with A.I.
bots and the ability to play split-
screen online with a friend.
The abundance of options in the
multiplayer is noteworthy, but the
gameplay is what matters, and in
this regard "Black Ops" is fine, but
not outstanding. The same core

concept of aiming down sights and
shooting an opponent before he
can shoot you remains, the major
difference being that everyone
seems to die much quicker. Once
an enemy starts firing, you'll be
lucky to last longer than a second.
There's rarely a chance to return
fire or get to cover. In this way,
"Black Ops" is a game of situation-
al awareness more than anything.
While the gameplay remains tense
and engaging, multiplayer .fire-
fights just aren't that exciting since
they're just so short.
The campaign of "Black Ops"
has its ups and downs. Ina change
of pace from most shooters,
"Black Ops" takes place during
the Cold War, albeit a fictitious,
alternate version of it. Gamers
play the majority of the game as
Alex Mason, an operative for the
CIA who fights through various
countries associated with the
Cold War, from Cuba and Viet-
nam to Soviet Russia. All of these
missions usually involve accom-
plishing some sort of outlandish
feat, like taking out Fidel Castro,
stopping a Russian space launch
or blowing up the Viet Cong with
a helicopter.
Every mission is linear and very
scripted. Often, weapons put in
place for specific occasions are use-
less otherwise, and deviation from
the given path is discouraged. Still,
there's a pretty terrific amount of

variety in the campaign, though
this can be a mixed blessing. Some
missions feel monotonous and
repetitive, while others are smart-
ly designed and well paced. The
vehicle sections are particularly
exhilarating and explosive. The
single-player mode often seems
like it's trying too hard to blow
people away, but some parts are
genuinely quite cool.
Lastly, there is the "Zombies
mode," in which a player's job is
to defend an area from a horde of
zombies for as long as possible.
Once players beat the campaign,
they unlock a new pentagon level,
where they can play as John F.
Kennedy, Richard Nixon and even
Fidel Castro. While awesome in
theory, this mode is unfortunately
less entertaining than it sounds.
The rooms players can defend are
very small, there's no variety in
the zombies that come at you and
it lacks the expected feeling of
impending dread. It's a nice diver-
sion, but definitely not the draw of
the game.
Just like previous games in the
series, "Call of Duty: Black Ops"
has a solid single-player compo-
nent and a well thought out mul-
tiplayer system. "Black Ops" has a
ton of wild new things happening
in it, but none of them are execut-
ed so deftly that it feels like it's
advancing the series in any major
way.

0

0

FILM REVIEW
Russell Crowe stays in the
present in Next Three Days'

"Quick! Rebury it! Goddamn metal detector.'

ARTS CHORALE
From Page 7
want to learn this music, I want to
perform it, and I want to be part of
something."'
On a campus with no shortage of
vocal music groups, Zeltzer man-
aged to find his niche during his
sophomore year. Ever since, he has
blocked off Tuesday and Thursday
afternoons from 4to 6 p.m. for Arts
Chorale rehearsals.
"There are a lot of a cappella
groups, but they're small and hard
to get into. There's (Men's) Glee Club
and Women's Glee Club, but some-
times that's more of a time commit-
ment. Whilewe do have asignificant
amountoftime, it's alittlebitless, so
people that have busy schedules or
can't commit the time to Glee Club
or an a cappella group.can still con-
tinue their singing through Arts
Chorale," Zeltzer explained.
The repertoire of Arts Chorale
encompasses everything from
classical to contemporary pieces.
Tomorrow's concert will include
"Na Goruske, Na Gore," an obscure
traditional Russian piece arranged
by O.P. Kolovski, in the same lineup
as Ned Rorem's 1950s piece "From
an Unknown Past."

"My favorite piece is the Tal-
lis," Zeltzer said, referring to "Nine
Psalm Tunes for Archbishop Park-
er's Psalter" by Thomas Tallis.
"They're very solemn, very pious
and they have a lot of great harmo-
nies and quick a cappella pieces.
They're really easy to learn but we
also have to shape the phrases and
really put a lot of music into them,"
he added.
"I love the Brahms," Chen said.
"Brahms is one of my favorite com-
posers. There are a bunch of love
songs and they're so beautiful. It's
really fun to sing in different lan-
guages for me. I don't speak German
... but it's really cool to just be able to
sing it. We go over the meanings of
the songs and what we're trying to
portray as we're singing and per-
forming."
For both Chen and Zeltzer, the
diverse repertoire and familiar
atmosphere combine to make Arts
Chorale an unforgettable college
experience.
"I can come in here every Tues-
day and Thursday and find a group
of people that are always there ...
always having fun," Zeltzer said. "It
doesn't matter if you had an exam
that week or if you had nothing that
week, you still come in and have a
good time ... and that's why I keep
coming back."

By TIMOTHY RABB
Daily Arts Writer
In the wake of Paul Hag-
gis's highly successful ensemble
drama "Crash,"
the sincer-
ity of his artis-
tic vision has 11* Next
constantly come
into question. Three Days
Though his 2004 At Quality16
Oscar-winning and Rave
examination of Lionsgate
racial tensions
in Los Angeles
earned him dozens of awards
and widespread critical acclaim,
Haggis also drew significant
criticism from skeptics who
viewed the film as an overly sim-
plistic portrayal of an infinitely
complex problem.
It would seem that in light
of this criticism, Haggis errs
on the side of safety with "The
Next Three Days." The remake
of the 2007 French thriller "Pour
Elle" avoids all of the controver-
sial themes and bold risks of its
predecessor, and it resembles
something in the way of "Taken."
It's popcorn entertainment, but
damn good, considering how
little it invests in its characters
and plot.
The premise is simple, but
rarely explored: A young woman
(Elizabeth Banks, "Definitely,
Maybe") is accused of the mur-
der of her boss, but her professor
husband (Russell Crowe, "Robin
Hood") is convinced of her inno-
cence despite the considerable
evidence implicating her. He
orchestrates an intricate plan to
aid her escape from prison, and
the hitches in his scheme provide
for plenty of viewer tension.

"So I was thinking ... Me, you and that kiddie slide, five minutes."

WHAT'S YOUR
BEAUTIFUL DARK
TWISTED FANTASY?
It's OK, you can tell us.
E-mail block@michigandaily.com. Why not?

Haggis proves adept at writing
and directing a film that's well
outside his comfort zone. It's also
refreshing to finally see Crowe in
a present-day role, one in which
we aren't expected to bow and
kiss the epic ground upon which
his sandaled feet have trod; it all
rests on pure chops here. He truly
is one of the greatest actors in the
world, and - though it may be a
small drop in the vast ocean of his
extensive filmography - this film
further advances that reputation.
There are holes in the plot,
to be sure, but film's dominance

in the realm of entertainment is has used that to his advantage.
owed in large part to its lack of There's a hospital kidnapping, a
subway chase, crime classes via
YouTube, a random meth lab and
11 an elusive coat button, all essen-
Russell Crowe tial facets of a script that's unre-
lentingly proactive and leaves no
takes his actings
S S C USstone unturned.
chops to the ""teve"i"its c"sta"tmotion
and its distinctiveness, "The
present day Next Three Days" bears some of
the traits that made "Crash" so
loved (and hated) by its critics: It
reveals subtle, yet valuable truths
realism. Its purpose is to real- about the nature of love, of trag-
ize the impossible, and Haggis edy and of human resilience.

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