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January 11, 1991 - Image 5

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1991-01-11

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___ _ T_ RTS
The Michigan Daily Friday, January 11, 1991

Page 5

lmmigration wants

Green Card
I
dir. Peter Weir
by Mary-Beth Barber
He doesn't seem like your typical
qoomantic comedy hero. He's over-
weight, his hair is longish and un-
kempt, his speech is broken and,
let's be honest, he has a big schnoz.
But renowned French actor Gerard
Depardieu, making his American de-
but in Peter Weir's Green Card, is as
charming and lovable as Richard
Gere - even more so if you're sick
of the man-saves-helpless-woman
plot (a la Pretty Woman).
* Written, directed and produced by
Australian director Peter Weir, Green
Card has an unpolished edge to it,
adding a sense of individuality that
separates it from the glitz and glam-
our of Hollywood. It is the story of
New York horticulturist Brontd Par-
rish (Andie MacDowell, of sex, lies
and videotape fame) and French
composer Georges Faure (Depardieu)
who agree to a marriage of conve-
Onience and get caught by the law.
Bronte wants a New York apartment
with a greenhouse, but needs to be
rmarried in order to qualify for the
sublet. Georges wants to play his
music in Los Angeles, but needs his

green card in order to stay in the
United States.
The two are set up by a mutual
friend, get married and plan on never
seeing the other again. But when the
Department of Immigration comes
knocking on Brontd's door,
demanding an interview and proof
that the marriage is legitimate, the
unlikely couple is forced to spend
three days together and learn the
intimate details of the other's life.
They, of course, hate each other
at. first. She thinks he's slobbish,
selfish and arrogant; he thinks she's
uptight, unrealistic and spoiled. He
smokes, she doesn't. He loves rich
French cooking and dark coffee, she
prefers vegetarian plates and drinks
decaf. But as the two learn more
about each other the differences be-
come obsolete and the sparks fly.
Weir fans who loved the mystical
quality of the other movies he has
directed (Dead Poets Society, The
Year of Living Dangerously and
Witness, to name a few) shouldn't
expect this of Green Card. The film
is a simple romantic comedy, and
the only mysterious intensity pre-
sent is in the very end. But replacing
intrigue is lighthearted comedy, wit
and charm, especially when Georges
convinces a wealthy heiress through
his music to donate an exotic garden

to get us!
to Brontd's volunteer organization.
Yet certain details are predictable,
such as when Georges comments
that he likes Bronte's hair down and
loose, so the minute she is out of
his sight she takes her bobby pins
out. Weir deserves a hand of ap-
plause, though, for the surprising
finish. There is no fairy-tale happy
ending, bringing a certain realism to
a script that seems a bit contrived.
Green Card is the perfect movie
for Depardieu to first attempt En-
glish because Weir wrote the charac-
ter for him. The character actually is
Depardieu, except Georges is a com-
poser while Depardieu is an actor.
But both the fictional character and
the real man are children of poverty-
stricken parents, left home in their
early teens and persued an artistic ca-
reer before they hit twenty. Yet
while Depardieu is charming, there
is an intensity missing that he has
brought to other roles in his native
French, such as his Cannes award-
winning performance in Cyrano de
Bergerac. This is the first time he
has had to master English, and there
is a subtle uncertainty in his actions.
MacDowell provides the perfect
match for Depardieu as the politi-
cally-active horticulturist. Brontd is
intelligent, compassionate and an ac-
tive member of the "Green Gueril-

Bronts Parish (Andie MacDowell) and Georges Faure (G6rard Depardieu) take photos of themselves so it looks
like they are married but end up falling in love.

las," a real-life organization dedicated
to building parks in the poorer parts
of New York City because "the chil-
dren live in chaos" and deserve some
beauty in their lives. But what
stands out about MacDowell's char-

acterization is her sense of indepen-
dence. Although constantly berated
by her parents to find a nice young
man to settle down with, she insists
on living alone and is content with
her solitary life. Yet she is not an
old maid; MacDowell's portrayal of

the confident and charming Bronte is
utterly attractive, and a welcome
change from the heroines who al-
ways seem to be in search of the per.
feet man.
GREEN CARD is being shown a
Showcase.

just Kidding ups Saturday

Night

Live

Beth Colquitt
ox Ve're like Saturday Night Live,
but we're funny," boldly says pro-
ducer/manager Rob Marks of his
comedy troupe Just Kidding. After
successfully establishing themselves
as a sketch comedy troupe for the
stage on a number of college cam-
puses in cities from Washington
D;C. to Los Angeles, the troupe has
*settled on the East Coast. But once
again it returns to its roots in Ann
Arbor. The troupe even has plans for
breaking into television soon to give
the SNL crew some competition,
says Marks.
He may have something there.

Michigan alumni, has sold out three
shows on campus in previous years,
two at the Power Center and one at
the Michigan Theater last year. Back
from their wildly successful national
tour, they will be at the Power Cen-
ter again this Saturday night with a
show which will feature almost all
new material.
Just Kidding began as a spin-off
of UAC's Comedy Company, the
student-run comedy troupe. Al-
though they are now based in Wash-
ington D. C., Just Kidding looks on
Ann Arbor as a starting point. The
cast is made up of professionals who
decided that they enjoyed, Comedy

Company so much that they wanted
to stay with it after graduation. But
the troupe has gone through some
personnel changes. New writers have
brought in a diversity of material.
New actors have given a different
flavor to the show. But the most
significant change is the size of the
group. It started with eleven people,
but is now down to five, including
one producer, although they plan to
add a couple more performers later
this year.
They try to keep their humor so-
phisticated and to stay in touch with
the college audience, despite having
left the campus. "We shy away from
the cheap jokes. We think our audi-

ences have a brain," says Marks. "It
there is one complaint that I hear,
it's that our humor is too intelli-
gent. I take that as a compliment."
Like Saturday Night Live, Just
Kidding does scripted vignettes, not
stand-up comedy. "Most sketches
take real life to an absurd level,"
says Marks. "We're mostly apoliti-
cal. We do a lot of spoofing and
satire, and then we have our silly
sketches."
JUST KIDDING will be at the
Power Center Saturday January 12 at
8 p.m. Tickets for students are $5.50
in advance, $6.50 at the door (non-
students: $8.50 in advance, $9.50 at
the door) from TicketMaster.

Ceder Point will be holding
auditions for singers, dancers and
musicians on Monday, Jan. 14 in
the Anderson room of the Michigan
Union. Registration is from 2:30 to
4:30 p.m. Ceder Point is also look-
ing for stage managers and techni-
cians. All applicants should bring a
one page typed resume, singers
should choose two vocal selections,
one up-tempo tune and one ballad
(piano accompanist will be pro-
vided), and singers with dance ability
should prepare a short dance routine
to a prerecorded cassette tape. Musi-
cians should prepare short selections
of contrasting styles. Costumed
characters are also needed, although
there are height restrictions. For

more information, call (419) 627-
2390.
The U of Michigan Gilbert
and Sullivan Society is h lding
auditions for the April production of
H.M.S. Pinafore..Auditions will be
January 14-17, and the mass meeting
is this Sunday, Jan. 13 at 7 p.m. in
the Henderson Room of the Michi-
gan League. Call 761-7855 for more
details.
Auditions for the First Basement
Arts production Line by -Isreal
Horowitz will take place tommamw
and Saturday. Sign up sheets are
posted in the green room adjacent to
the Arena theater 1501 Freize bldg.

University of Michigan Library
School of Information and Library Studies
present
CLAUDE
BROWN
Author of
Manchild in the Promised Land -
and Children of Ham
2 pm
January 21, 1991
Michigan Union
Ballroom
Martin Luther King Day
Symposium
A- 1
f f.4t ..+ q'"

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