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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
takes on history with a
By ANNA SADOVSKAYA
Abraham Lincoln, the esteemed
16th president of the United States,
is a vampire hunter. Wielding his
silver axe and
in the name of*
ictims, Lincoln Ln :
fights the nefari- ncoh
ous undead, man- Vampire
aging to abolish Hunter
slavery in the H e
process. At Qualityl6
Though his- and Rave
tory classes have
managed to skip Fox
over this intense-
ly badass background story, Timur
Bekmambetov and Tim Burton's
film "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire
Hunter" highlights and exposes the
dark underbelly of 19th-Century
Based on Seth Grahame-Smith's
novel of the same name, "Vampire
Hunter" follows Abe (Benjamin
Walker, "Kinsey") from childhood
to death and all the greatness in
Four score and millions of vampires ago ..
between. After witnessing the
death of his mother by vampire bite,
Lincoln vows to avenge her by going
after as manyvampires as ittakes.
Highly stylized and calculating,
the movie succeeds in creating a
realistic, visually gratifying world.
What if Lincoln really had been a
vampire hunter? What if slavery
was the result of blood-hungry
vampires and their need to feed?
Director Bekmambetov answers
the questions in impressive fashion,
allowing the film to bypass "campy"
on its search for a fantastical ver-
sion of reality.
In typical Burton fashion, the
film also takes a step into the ter-
rifying unknown. When Henry
2. 4 and 8 Mont Contracts
on North and Central Campus
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Phone:(734) 662-4414 (extOo)
Sturgess (Dominic Cooper, "My
Week with Marilyn") first offers
his vampire-hunting expertise to
Lincoln, a sense of foreboding fol-
lows the exchange; the feeling of
stepping into unfamiliar terri-
tory. Despite the entirety of the
plot being steeped in fang-fiction,
moments still feel genuine and sur-
prising, once again emphasizingthe
believability of the created world.
Where "Abraham Lincoln: Vam-
pire Hunter" stumbles is in it's
delivery. Relying on its vampire
curb-appeal, the movie decides
to shy away from hilarity, instead
deciding to focus on the action and
seriousness of a would-be vampire
The film wants to be a more-awe-
some version of reality, employing
the tried-and-true recipe ofadding
a twist to established storylines.
And though actors wear their grim
and war-torn faces well, they don't
mask the inevitable predictability
of the film: Whether it's for the
benefit of people or for the eradi-
cation of the head-vampires Adam
(Rufus Sewell, "The Illusionist")
and Vadoma (supermodel Erin
Wasson), Lincoln runs for presi-
dent. Whether abolishing slavery
for equal rights or the freedom of
humanity from vampires, Lincoln
still fights against the tyranny of
Vampires are not enough of an
incentive to produce a movie, and
despite the visually enticing scen-
ery and cinematography, "Abra-
ham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter"
can't keep the high-energy pace.
Vampires don't necessarily mean
instant excitement, and avampire-
hunting Abraham Lincoln is only
moderately more impassioned
then the classic top-hate Abe.
By ANDREA DAVIS
Considered "One of the five
defining pop acts of Pakistan"
by The NEWS International,
noori is making
its debut tour
of the United nloon
States this Top of the Park
June and July.
by the U.S. Free
the program Center Stage, the
band performs in Washington
D.C., New York and Connecti-
cut before it appears at the Ann
Arbor Summer Festival tonight.
During a break in New Haven,
Conn., bandmates Ali Noor, Ali
Hamza and Louis J. Pinto (oth-
erwise known as Gumby) took
turns in a conference call to
describe their U.S. experience to
The Michigan Daily.
"It's been great. It's been one
of the best experiences we've had
so far in our careers," said singer
and guitarist, Ali Noor.
"Back home we're one of the
main acts over there, so obviously
playing gigs you start to get very
comfortable," said percussionist
Gumby. "And here we are, just per-
forming where no one knows you,
especially American audiences,
and we have to play like any other
band that's just startingout. That's
a very different feeling that we
haven't experienced in a while. So
it's a great learning (experience)."
The three original band mem-
bers (six play on the tour) were .
influenced by a range of music
styles from East to West. When
they began working together
over 10 years ago, they blended
their interests into a multicul-
"There's a little bit of punk
rock, there's a bit of Indian rock,
there's a lot of Eastern folk melo-
dies," Gumby said. "We all grew
up listening to diverse music ... and
when the three of us are togeth-
er in the studio writing stuff or
recording stuff, you'll see different
things happen in the music."
While the trio has developed
it's own flavor of music, Ali Hamza
(vocals and bass) explained that
he and his brother Noor are truly
songwriters. They strayed from
the usual Pakistani genre of love
songs, decidingto project stronger
"Our songs have revolved
around the youth," Hamza said.
"There was very little-about what
journey a single individual goes
through, and what an individual
goes through within context of
society. This became our focus."
Noor is a trained lawyer and
Hamza graduated from Lahore
University of Management Sci-
ences with a degree in Econom-
ics. Yet their passion was music,
and they embraced this to form
their energetic and successful
band. Today they continue to
urge others to take risks and fol-
low their dreams.
comes to Top.
"The youth over there, every-
body has a lot of creative passion,
but most of them tend to for-
get that -along the way," Hamza
explained. "They start doing
engineering and law, and they
obviously want to get into their
professional career. They don't
get much time to carry on with
their hobby or their passion."
Perhaps Pakistani youth are
not the only ones to learn from
the band's message. Many Amer-
ican students today are pres-
sured to seek an "appropriate"
career rather than to follow their
With words at the heart of
their music, Noor and Hamza
were thrilled for the opportunity
to write lyrics in English for this
United States tour.
The group felt that American
audiences would not get the full
impact of their words if they only
sang in Urdu, the Pakistani lan-
guage. The band wishes to really
communicate with and connect to
"We wanted ourselves to be
kind of an example, that if you're
passionate about something, you
should definitely go on out and do
it - it might be very difficult for
you, but you definitely should not
stop," Hamza said. "And that's
the message that we communi-
cated to the youth in our coun-
From Page 1A
ous technology found difficult to
provide because of the difficulty of
studying inside oceanic storms.
The team of professors beat
out 18 other teams that submit-
ted proposals when the agency
offered an opportunity for funds
for small spaceflight investiga-
tions in Earth's system, made pos-
sible by the Earth Venture-class
series of projects in NASA's Earth
The University professors will
partner with Southwest Research
Institute of Texas, Surrey Satel-
lite Technology of Colorado and
the NASA Ames Research Center
to build the satellites and gather
data that can be used for research.
In Earth's orbit, the satellites'
functions will include probing the
interaction between seawater and
air and how that interaction has
a role in the development of hur-
ricanes and other tropical storms.
Ruf, the project's principal
investigator, said the satellites
will be up in space to monitor hur-
ricanes for at least two hurricane
seasons but noted that while the
satellites are designed for a two-
year lifetime, they may last longer.
"The first one is like a training
session, to make sure everything
is working and tune up all of the
electronics properly, and then the
second year we'll be able to really
do it," Ruf said.
Ruf said their mission was
attractive to NASA because their
satellites are smaller and less
expensive than previous satellites.
"There's several different ways
of looking at the surface condi-
tions that have been flying since
the 1970s, and the more tradition-
al ways are much bigger and much
more expensive," he said.
Ruf added that the satellites'
technology will allow for a mis-
sion that will be the first of its
"As far as using this kind of
technology specifically, it's been
demonstrated twice before on
satellites, but they were just these
little demonstrations, things that
only lasted for a few weeks to
show that the idea was sound,"
Ruf said. "But there was never like
a full, concerted mission to do sus-
Ruf said the team also exten-
sively researched cyclones before
submitting the proposal.
"We did a lot of historical anal-
ysis ... as part of the design study
for how many satellites we would
need and the detail about their
design so we would be able to see
a lot of hurricanes," Ruf said.
The mission will focus on tak-
ing measurements of hurricanes
during the hurricanes, which
hasn't been done before, accord-
ing to Ruf.
"(Old satellites) stopped work-
ing well as soon as you get close
to the middle of the hurricane
because there is too much rain,
and this new technique can see
right through the rain well, so
that's a big-deal thing," Ruf said.
Ruf added that studying such
hard-to-reach areas of the storms
can help meteorologists better
forecast the intensity of hurri-
canes in the future.
Posselt said he joined the proj-
ect to further investigate convec-
tion as a general topic, rather than
solely tropical cyclones.
"My task on this is ... to explore
uses of this data to try to under-
stand tropical precipitation," Pos-
Posselt added that smaller
storms are important to study as
"In the last five or 10 years or
so, there's been a more concerted
effort to try to understand these
tropical systems, partly because
they can give rise to hurricanes
down the road if they persist long
enough and organize in the right
way," Posselt said.
Posselt added that NASA saw
how their proposal would ben-
efit science without an exorbitant
"So for NASA, I think this prob-
ably fell in a bit of a sweet spot ...
it's a measurement that we don't
have globally but it's using tech-
nology that we don't have to spend
tens of millions of dollars develop-
ing," Posselt said.
NASA spokesman Steve Cole
said this mission will provide
NASA with the kind of cutting-
edge study of Earth they look for.
"NASA does a lot of research
into developing for new ways to
use the vantage point of space,
having instruments in space to
study weather, hurricanes, all
sorts of earth science," Cole said.
"We've had a number of missions
that study winds ... and this mis-
sion is kind of pushing the enve-
Cole added that it is somewhat
unique for NASA to have a univer-
"Most NASA missions are done
not at universities, but we do
have a history in a wide range of
sciences of what we call P.I.-led
missions. We have them in planet
science and solar science," Cole
Students directed to
By ADAM RUBENFIRE
Daily News Editor
Students studying at the Sha-
piro Undergraduate Library this
term may be inconvenienced by a
lack of functional lavatories.
As a part of a project that began
June 14, all of the bathrooms in
the UGLi are closed for renova-
Rebecca Dunkle, associate
university librarian for library
operations, said in a statement
Thursday the entirety of the
library's plumbing chase - the
area where water and sew-
age pipes are based - is being
replaced, leaving all of the build-
ing's sinks and toilets inoperable.
As part of the renovation, the
plumbing fixtures in the bath-
rooms will also be replaced.
Rather than closing down and
repairing the restrooms one at a
time, Dunkle said the bathrooms
all had to be closed down because
"trying to re-direct waste and
water from floor to floor is almost
For those who need to use a
bathroom, library officials are
directing students and other
guests to the 22 restrooms in the
Hatcher Graduate Library next
Dunkle s'aid the library doesn't
expect students' studying to be
hindered by the renovations,
which are projected to last the
duration of the summer.
"Since the summer is relatively
slow and there are restrooms so
conveniently close, this was the
deemed to be the best option,"
When asked whether closing
the library would conflict with
workplace requirements, offi-
cials from the Occupational Safe-
ty and Health Administration at
Restrooms in the Shapiro Undergraduate libraries are currenlty undergoing renovations.
'U' closes UGLi bathrooms for repairs
both the state and federal levels
said as long as the University has
an alternate location for library
employees, the multi-restroom
closing does not violate any labor
Business sophomore Kevin
Hashman said the renovations
"I didn't think they need reno-
vations - they were OK," Hash-
man said. "They needed more
frequent cleanings, in my opin-
ion, more than renovations."