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May 29, 2001 - Image 11

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2001-05-29

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Music at the Pig ...
Past-punk pop quartet The FaintplayThe
Blind Pig Suidy at 8:30 pim. $8 it the
door
tichigandaily.com/arts

ARTS

TUESDAY
MAY 29, 2001 11

MUST-SEE MOVIE TUESDAY
Shrek: High tech, low dreck 77

By Lyle Henretty
Daily Arts Writer

Basically, "Shrek" is an energetic,
beautifully animated, funny, swift
kick aimed solely at Disney's crotch.
After nursing that particular
appendage, Disney CEO Michael
Eisner had better
tend to his heels,
as DreamWorks
SKG's latest
Shrek proves that The
Mouse is no
Grade: B+ longer animating
with the biggest
Atishowcase pencil. Tasteless
and Quality 16 double entendres
aside, "Shrek"
- would not be a
success if it was
simply a big-
budget swipe at
the competition.
The film is a fractured fairy tale,
acknowledging its place in the pan-
theon of animated movies without
reveling in the post-modern irony
that has prevailed in comedy and ani-
mation for the last decade. This
rather tricky stunt allows for a movie
that kids and adults can enjoy on
both the same and different levels.
While the average grown-up may
d an Ogre lighting a candle made
from his own ear wax a little juve-
nile, they're bound to enjoy Eddie
Murphy throwing away lines as a
motor-mouthed donkey - which will
go right over the little ones' heads.
However, an arrogant Robin Hood
and his musically inclined Merry
Men "breaking it down" into a River-
ance rendition is just plain funny for
Weryone.
The story centers on Shrek, an
antisocial ogre voiced by Mike
Myers in full Scottish mode
("Mooove, Heeeed!'"). Shrek's idyllic
forest has been over-run by displaced

fairy tale characters (most of which
happened to be made into cartoons
by that other company), who were
chased out of the magic kingdom of
Duloc by evil Lord Farquaad (John
Lithgow, with enough leftover ham to
make a sub). Shrek wants the charac-
ters out and his peace returned, so he
strikes a deal with Farquaad. He'll
rescue the paradigm princess
(Cameron Diaz) from the dragon,
and Farquaad will fix everything.
And guess what? Shrek falls in love
with the princess, and the love is
reciprocated! These standard plot
elements are of little consequence,
as the enjoyment of the movie
comes from the charm and humor of
the main characters, both visually
and vocally.
Myers is strong but not wonderful
as the titular main character. He
plays the funny parts way over the
top (it is a cartoon) and can bring it
down for the more poignant
moments (poignant in a cartoonish
sort of way). Murphy is hilarious as
the sidekick, knowingly mocking the
stereotypes associated with side-
kicks in general, and African-Amer-
ican sekasic ik nrsiific His

ability to showcase the gleefully
dumb while throwing away the more
intelligent ad-lib shows his growth
as a comedian and his devotion to
the character. Diaz is as sunny and
cute as ever, and does her best to
add depth to the most 2-dimensional
character in this surprisingly 3-
dimensional movie.
The animation has achieved a new
echelon of excellence, and makes
groundbreakers such as "Toy Story"
appear to be filled in with an etch-a-
sketch. The animator's have created
a world that feels as though it
stretches beyond the boundaries of
the screen, and would go on forever
if you could simply crane your neck
far enough to see. While creatures
still fare better than people, the
entire film has a style that makes
this a moot point. All the harsh lines
associated with computer animation
of old have been eradicated, and
what is left lives and breathes.
So, kids, until "Final Fantasy"
sprawls across time and space later
this summer, the bar has been set,
and what may prove to be the most
esthetically pleasing film of the
sammers hsarrived.

i

Hey Ben ... am I as hot a I feel right now?
'Habor' sinks under
Hollywood hype

By Wilhelmina Mauritz
Daily ArtsWriter
Filled with emotion, romance, action
and lots of explosions, one of the most
anticipated movies of the summer has
attempted to
recreate a day that
s will "live in
infamy:" Decem-
Pearl ber 7, 1941, the
Harbor day Pearl Harbor
was attacked.
Grade: B "Pearl Harbor"
At showcase is a huge movie in
and Quality 16 every way. Every-
thing is over the
top; the portrayal
of the time period,
the action
sequences, the
poignant emotions
from romance and brotherly love to
camaraderie and patriotic love of coun-
try. What this means is that "Pearl Har-
I th Anua
A' ItI IYO

bor," if not scrutinized too closely, is a
pretty entertaining movie, but for many
that will not be enough.
Obviously a movie such as this has
the potential to awaken nationalistic
issues for some, the Japanese in particu-
lar. Perhaps one of the best things "Pearl
Harbor" did was portray the Japanese in
a very humane manner. They were not
depicted as the evil enemy, but as people
who were fighting for a cause to which
they were deeply committed, just like
the United States. In one scene shortly
before the attack, a Japanese military
man is complimenting his commander
on his brilliance. The commander coun-
tered, "A brilliant man would find a way'
not to fight a war."
"Pearl Harbor" seemed to be trying to
accomplish the same thing as the block-
buster "Titanic" by using a bittersweet
romance amidst this historical incident
to connect the audience with the loss of
the momentous event. Unfortunately in
See HARBOR, page 12

Courtesy of Dreamworks SKG
it isn't easy being green and ugly ... but baby ... I'm a sex machine.

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