Image provided by: University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries, Lincoln, NE
About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Oct. 13, 1972)
"iil JiUnnnA 2. mm
Review by Roy Baldwin
Ah, there's good news tonight! Halloween is barely two
weeks away, and there's a vampire flick on at the Varsity. Not
an ordinary v.f., of course, but Blacula, American
International Studios' entry into the black exploitation movie
Blacula is corny. It is corny in a way that only American
International movies can be. African prince Mamuwalde visits
the castle of the Count Dracula to entreat the evil count to use
his "powers of statesmanship" (?) to put an end to the slave
Dracula, of course, will have none of this and vamps
Mamuwalde, seals him in a coffin, dooms him to lust eternally
after blood, etc., etc. His home is opened 200 years later in
Los Angeles by two interior decorators who plan to make a
fortune sellina the furnishings of Castle Dracula in the states.
Thus unleashed, he begins his reign of terror, etc.
Through it all William Marshall, who has had some
experience with Shakespearian stage, is good at going "Aargh!
Aargh!," and turning into a bat. Vonetta McGee as his wife
Luva and her reincarnation Tina, does a fine job wandering
around in a daze and saying "No, Mamuwalde! Help!"
Thalmus Rasulala, as the brave Dr. Thomas, is at his best
unbuttoning his sportcoat and putting his hands on his hips.
The extras are great at wearing purple face make-up, clip-on
fangs and stumbling around looking menacing and possessed.
The movie is more than corny, though. It is embarrassing.
Your reviewer, who is white, was embarrassed by the racism
which forms the fiim's foundation.
Blacula ought to be subtitled, "Amos n' Andy Grow
Teeth." It was produced by a white man, directed by a white
man, written by a white woman, financed by a white-owned
company. It is a white man's idea of what would appeal to the
mind of a black man.
The idea is that if detective thrillers like Shaft and Cotton
Comes to Harlem succeed in drawing black crowds and green
money, why not see if a black vampire movie will do as well?
If your big brother liked Shaft, you're supposed to dig Blacula.
Blacula feeds on prejudice, just as the vampires feed on
ketchup. Black people get to play all the good roles, white
people get to play the flunkies.
The blacks drive the nice cars, go to the swank supper
clubs, say all the snappy lines "Sit down, baby, I got
something heavy to lay on you."
One note of hope, though-there won't be any Bride of
Blacula, Son of Blacula, or any other sequel. The hero, after
losing his girlfriend, drags himself up into the light of morning
and turns into worms on the pavement. See, didn't we tell you
there was good news tonight?
Cartoon: What a surprise! Bugs Bunny's classic Rabbit of
Seville. Almost worth the price of admission!
Butterflies Are Free is billed as "the long-run hit play with
all its humor and all its heart." Unfortunately, I have not seen
or read the play to determine whether or not the transfer from
one medium to another was successful.
What I can determine is that the movie version, although
not a fantastic motion picture, is entertaining.
Although the show's location has been switched from New
York City's Greenwich Village to San Francisco, producer M.J.
Frankovitch has kept , many of the same persons associated
with the original stage production. Leonard Gersche, who
wrote the play, also wrote the sceenplay; Milton Katselas, who
directed its Broadway version, also directed the movie; and
Eileen Heckart repeats her role as the mother.
The plot is basic. Boy meet girl, boy loses girl, boy wins
back girl. The kicker is that the boy is blind. He lives by
himself in a dishwater apartment, complete with open
connecting door to a young, kooky divorcee's apartment-and
he doesn't mind going to bed with her.
It is the relationships among the main characters that make
the film worthwhile. The three main characters are basically
gentle people. However, when they do become angry, positive
changes in their characters occur.
After Jill (Goldie Hawn) explodes at the mother (Heckart)
for being over-possessive ("maybe I'm not the girl for
Don-but I know you're not the girl for him either"), the
mother realizes she has been wrong.
And when Don (Edward Albert), hurt because Jill plans to
desert him, calls her retarded because she can't make an adult
commitment, Jill finally matures.
This is Hawn's most successful film effort to date. Although
she always seems to play lovable, daffy broads, her
performance in Butterflies is good.
Heckart comes across extremely well as the ultra-chic, rich
and domineering mother. Albert, son of Eddie Albert
(remember Green Acres,!), doesn't do quite so well as Hawn
and Heckart, but he succeeds in conveying Don's
The only soapy part of the film is the title, a quote from
:ons. which Jill and Don use as a statement for
I "cl? til " fy
Butterflies Are Free . . . Jill (Goldie Hawn) convinces Don (Edward Albert) to stay
in his San Francisco apartment and not move home to his mother.
their relationship and independence. Outside of this, the movie
is one to go to and simply enjoy yourself.
Bitch time! I'm getting damn sick and tired of going to a
cultural event in this city and seeing everything get a standing
Last Saturday, at the end of the Johannesen and Nelsova
concert at Kimball Recital Hall, I found myself standing with
many in the audience giving the artists a standing ovation, and
I asked myself, "What the hell am I doinq?"
Without a doubt, Johannesen and Nelsova are talented
, musicians and their concert was an excellent one, but did it
deserve a standing ovation?
It seems as if Lincoln audiences are either addicted to
standing ovations and have to stand to satisfy a habit, or
people have the misguided idea that unless they give a standing
ovation they're not "cooool and with it."
Standing ovations are meant to exhibit the ultimate in
appreciation. If they're lucky, the normal audience should
experience this feeling two or three times in a lifetime not
every other week.
Yet it seems that's exactly what happens at every Lincoln
concert, whether it be Neil Diamond, Roberta Flack, the
Carpenters or the symphony orchestra
An audience doesn't realize that most artists are perfectly
satisfied with simple applause. They don't expect standing
Artists are their own severest critics. If an artist doesn't do
a good job, he's the first to know it. Nothing shows cultural
immaturity more clearly than giving a standing ovation to an
artist who knows he doesn't deserve it. Rather than praising
the artist, it almost cheapens their performance.
The Weekend Films have Camelot on Friday and Saturday
in the Nebraska Union Small Auditorium and in the East
Campus Union Sunday.
Don't forget "Boy Wonder" Wayne Newton at Pershing
Auditorium Saturday. And on Monday, Mitch Miller finds his
way into Pershing, by way of Lincoln Community Concerts.
friday, October 13, 1972
Powered by Open ONI