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May 10, 1995 - Image 15

Resource type:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 1995-05-10

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Now showing ...a aiIg
Mainstreet Comedy Showcase presents
nationally renowned comedian Cathy
Ladman May 11-13. Tickets are a mere Wednesday
$12. Call 996-9080 for more info. May 10, 1995

French' cute but predictable
y Michael Zilberman and amused by their impracticality while max ensue. Now, it's "French Kiss": A
aily ArsWriter running into each other's embraces. young woman goes to France in search for
Kate, a young American in Paris, takes Think "Roman Holiday" recast with her fiancee and falls in love with a street-
taxi from the airport to her hotel. On the "Annie Hall" characters. smart local guy; comic mismatches and a
ay, she manages to pass the Eiffel Tower, tear jerking airport climax ensue.
uvre and Monmartre. If you've never - Still, what "French Kiss" lacks ir
n to Paris, you won't know that in order originality is somewhat compensated by
o do so, she'd have to cross the river back French Kiss the sheer force of acting. It's the sixth
d forth several times. But even if the im- collaboration between Lawrence Kasdar
robability of the route registers some- Directed by Lawrence and Kevin Kline, and Kline is amazingly
here in your mind, chances are, you'll Kasdan; with Meg Ryan comfortable before the camera. His Luc
ake it as a given. After all, Paris is the of- and is more an incarnation of French spirit
icial star of "French Kiss," since it's al- and Kevin Kmine than a real person, yet Kline manages tc
owed toupstageMeg Ryan. At Briarwood and Showcase pull it off both ways. Timothy Hutton,
Ryan is generally cited as the single whose career takes puzzling twists and
rson responsible for the resurrection of A genre is considered in its classical turns ("The Temp," anyone?), squeezes
antic screwball comedy. "When phase when it a)has clearly definable con- a memorable performance out of a
Met Sally" and "Sleepless In Se- ventions and b) spawns successful thankless role: his character's "dramatic
ttle" fiddled with the genre and returned wannabes. Among the most obvious need," so to speak, revolves around a
t to the public in an acceptably cliches of New Screwball Comedy are the painful choice between Ryan and some
stmodernist form: The plots remained travel motive, a wisecracking friend (Car- French model. In Hutton's interpretation,
e same, only now the heroes eyed their rie Fisher, Rosie O'Donnell), a vintage ro- however, the treacherous fiancee comes
wn actions with genuine disbelief, the mance as a jokey point of reference ("An across as a jellyfish of a man, a regular
rony that audiences usually mustered for Affair To Remember") . Wannabes also guy mortally afraid of responsibility in
his sort of cinema. Incredibly romantic abound. In 1994, it was Marisa Tomei's any shape and form - in other words,
tunts suddenly seemed almost plausible vehicle "Only You": A young woman goes the most believable of all characters in
xecuted by smirking yuppified indi- to Italy in search of her fiancee and falls in the film. As for Meg Ryan, she is strictly
'duals, independently rich guys and love with a street-smart local guy; comic an acquired taste. I'm at a loss when it
is with higher education amazed at mismatches and a tear jerking airport cli- comes to describing her acting abilities:


""'"'n""" a"pea"'" uu ""o " "P'Ue "i "eg, nyans extremec uteness.
Her shtick is, basically, throwing fits, but rial, some sharp but utterly gratt
doing it cutely. Whether it works or not anti-French riffing (come on, hote
depends on the film. In "French Kiss," cierges don't start quietly tremblin
she is very appropriate as a blond bou- hatred at the sight of an English-spe
quet of neuroses: The whole dam movie tourist), a couple of nice running
is about a complex-ridden American and lots of sun-drenched French'
soul cleansed by a good dose of Paris. There's not much to fall in love
Since all of us know the ending any- about "French Kiss" and nothingI
way, "French Kiss" mal the viewer ject to: duplicating Ryan's appro,
concentrate on subtler things. Namely - her role, whatever this film does, i
talented cast struggling with weak mate- cutely.

l con-
g with-
g gags
e with
to ob-
ach to
t does

ike Watt gives an electrifying performance
y Heather Phares to Kurt Cobain's, and a few of the Foo Fighters' gig was a huge success, expected: Watt dedicated aMinutemen
ally Arts Editor songs seemed to be about Cobain and/ highlighting the band's winning com- song to the band's late singer D. Boon,
One of the most welcome comebacks or the Nirvana experience. One song, bination of charm, well-written songs and Watt finished the gig off with a
f this year is the remarkable resurgence "Easy Target," included the lyrics "I'm and a built-in fanbase. They'll defi- peculiar encore of Pat Smear whisper-
f Minutemen / Firehose bassist an easy target/ Did you ever listen?/ nitely be the next big thing (look for ing and screaming over Watt's bass.
aordinaire Mike Watt. In just five Get out! Get out! Get out!" which their debut on Capitol soon), but The show was not to be missed. Each
port months, Watt has gone from a well- could refer to either casual Nirvana they're deserving of it. band, whether a full-time or side project,
espected but not commercially recog- fans or to Cobain himself. After an intermission, Mike Watt and gave 100 percent to the large crowd of
ized underground pioneer to a his backup band came onstage. And fans there. Remarkable not only for the
'spielmeister" on "120 Minutes" and the ..- r what a band it was: Eddie Vedder, Pat chance to see "alternative" superstars
eadliner of a tour with the likes of Smear and Dave Grohl on guitar, the Foo like Grohl and Vedder in a relatively
overcraft and the Foo Fighters. Mike Watt Fighters' drummer and Dave Grohl on small venue, as well as the chance to see
And just who are Hovercraft and , Hall drums, and Watt playing bass in his in- a pioneer of modern music like Watt at
he Foo Fighters, you ask? Well, . Andrews imitable style. The band opened with a work, the show was both entertaining
overcraft is the ambient-industrial May 5, 1995 laid-back version of "Chinese Firedrill" and historic.
ide-project of everyone's favorite off of Watt's newest album "Ball-Hog or
erational spokesperson, Pearl Butenough about Nirvana.Grohlis as Tugboat?" and proceeded to play the
's Eddie Vedder. St. Andrew's in- an engaging frontman as one is likely to majority of the record.
erior was shrouded in darkness as a find in an alternative band, mixing a Highlights included "Against the T RA R
asked Vedder drummed, his wife down-to-earth sense of humor withobvi- Seventies," with Watt and Vedder
eth played guitar and an unknown ous vocal and guitar-playing talent. Pat trading off lead vocals, and a rolicking
assist churned out alternately pum- Smear is also a Foo Fighter, bringing the version of "Piss Bottle Man," intro-
eling and lulling industrial music. As goofy charm and punk credibility to this duced as "a song about something I POSTERS
hey played, images were projected band that he did to Nirvana in the band's keep in my truck," by Watt. The band
nto a large backdrop, a la Nine Inch later days. The Fighters' rhythm section is was predictably but enjoyably tight, RESERVOIR DOGS
ails' "Hurt" video. After a brief set of composed of the bassist and drummer of and the fans moshed in approval from PULP FICTION
round 30 minutes, Hovercraft hov- Sub Pop's Sunny Day Real Estate, and the beginning of the set to its finish. BEASTIE BOYS
red quietly offstage. they also add a tightness to the band that And fortunately, there were much
he Foo Fighters, however, are many otherplayerscouldn't.Allinall,the fewer cries of "Eddie! Eddie!" than HENDRIX
irvana drummer Dave Grohl's new
and, Making their Detroit debut, the T-SHIRTS
and gave their fans a glimpse at their
ew material, which was surprisingly Gaeu ed
nd refreshingly unreminiscent of Nir- t eBeatles Tasty W ar
ana. Indeed, the band's sound fol- H+
owed more along the lines of one of calU-W itn ecr~HI-FI, John Doe +
irvana's influences, the Pixies; even {RQd LEM PREG N HELP Tons more to choose
bough loud, distorted guitars and ex-
reme dynamics dominated most of the 769728 from
s, the Foo Fighters are streamlined Aytm ,aydy 4hus
nd pop-oriented where Nirvana was'f .2 hiSj FLOECN
ore thunderous. Even so, there were u C fi nalGE 1/OFNUPT S
ines when Grohl's voice was similiar Sev :stdnsnc 9Q
Servb9 Stdentssi.....Q

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