The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, April 04, 1997, Page 10, Image 10

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VAL KILMER stars as Slum Te«plar, a «astw tlitef, in tte lew PMHp Itycn fita “Tie Saint.”
Incomplete ending damns'The Saint?
' •. ■&'" 'i . •
By Gerry Beltz
Film Critic
“The Saint” is great coming out
of the gate but just doesn’t have the
stamina to make it last.
Who’s to blame? Probably not
Val Kilmer, who stars as Simon
Templar, a suave thief who is a
master of disguises and has a few
nifty gadgets to help him in his
Director Philip Noyce (“Clear
and Present Danger,” “Patriot
Games”) looks to be innocent as
well. The film keeps a good pace,
and all the performers give excel
lent performances. Even Elisabeth
Shue (“Leaving Las Vegas”) is
semi-believable as a somewhat ec
centric scientist.
(Note: I heavily emphasize the
The burden of guilt would prob
ably fall on the shoulders of the
poor ending, which feels rushed
and incomplete.
Dr. Emma Russell (Shue) has
supposedly perfected a new power
source, and Templar has been hired
to get the formula from her. Un
fortunately, in the process, he falls
in love with her.
Eventually, the bad guys (cor
rupt Russian dictator and cronies)
are after both Simon and Emma,
and all they have is their wits —
and luck — to save their necks.
Kilmer keeps the laughs and
chills going with his excellent work
as a man of a thousand faces.
Though many equate the charac
ter of Simon Templar with James
Bond, it should be remembered that
Templar is a thief who isn’t even
aware of his own past.
While Shue does an acceptable
job as the scientist swept up in con
spiracy and danger, she just acts too
Film: “The Saint”
Stars: Val Kilmer, Elisabeth Shue
Director: Philip Noyce
Rating: PG-13 (violence, adult
situations, language)
Grade: El
Five Words: Romance, action and
drama too!
flighty and light-headed to be com
pletely believable as a master sci
entist, even if she is a bit eccentric.
The computer work and tech
nology in this flick is phenomenal.
The action, too, is great. The
work at the beginning of the film
really draws the audience in, but
the last half-hour or so drags by
rather sluggishly.
It’s not exactly a slice of heaven,
but “The Saint” is still a decent film
to catch this weekend.
Variety of influences
shape Cincinnati band
ByBret Schulte
Staff Reporter
Stich has stuck together, for five
years to be exact, and during that time
the group has endured month-long
stretches on the road.
Now, the road leads to Lincoln,
where the Cincinnati-based five-piece
will make its first Nebraska appear
ance tonight at Knickerbockers, 901
While acknowledging a definite
Cincinnati influence, guitarist Duffy
McSwiggen said the band was the
product of a kaleidoscope of musical
“Our drummer (Paul Moran) is
really into hip-hop and English rock,”
said McSwiggemQ The vocalist
(Johnny Hodges) digs ’80s hard rock
like Cheap Trick, and our bassist
(David Koenig) plays out of a south
ern punk style.”
Although Stich has worked hard
to maintain its distinct style and
sound, the group has been reared in a
thriving local scene, led by the dark
soul-rock band, The Afghan Whigs.
“John Curley (bassist of Afghan
Whigs) produced and recorded our
first demo tape,” McSwiggen said. “It
went pretty far, a lot further than we
had expected.”
In addition to Curley, Stich re
ceived input from an Afghan Whigs
sound engineer, Steve Curtain, who
assisted in production of Stich’s al
bum, “The Vehicle,” on Violently Hip
“I guess we do have that Cincin
nati kind of sound,” McSwiggen said.
“A lot of us have that kind of sound.
We don’t sound like the Whigs or any
We’ve always heard
good things about
Nebraska; it’s a
long trip for us, but
it’ll be fun.”
Duffy McSwiggen
thing but we have jammed together.”
Stich has brought its “Cincinnati
.kind of sound” on the road for years,
I frequently in the Ohio tri-state area
and the Southeast. The Nebraska visit
marks the first stop of a three-month
tour in which the band will work its
way back to Cincinnati and then hit
the road once again.
While appearances in Nebraska
aren’t generally a necessary pit stop
on the road map of musical success,
McSwiggen is looking forward to the
“We’ve always heard good things
about Nebraska; it’s a long trip for us,
but it’ll be fun.”
With a second album in the works,
numerous 7-inches, and a decorated
touring history, Stich hopes to impress
the Nebraska crowd.
“We’ve been working hard to make
sure we can come back. Hopefully
we’ll be regulars,” McSwiggen said.
Stich’s performance will begin at
11:30 p.m. The show has a $3 cover
Digital signals will replace
traditional analog TV system
quality digital television should start
appearing in homes in two years —
assuming people lay out a hefty $2,000
for new TV sets — under a plan fed
eral regulators adopted Thursday.
The current analog broadcast TV
system will die in nine years, mean
ing that viewers will either have to buy
new digital TVs and VCRs or pur
chase set-top converters that let ana
log TV sets and VCRs receive the new
The Federal Communications
Commission approved the plan cm a
4-0 vote.
While the new digital sets will
have a significantly better picture, a
“converted” digital signal fed to an
analog set will produce no better pic
ture quality than the analog set already
And get ready for sticker shock:
The wide-screen digital TV sets are
expected to cost at least $2,000 ini
tially. If the new sets sell as briskly as
VCRs did when they debuted, those
prices should come down fairly
Quickly. The set-top converters will
range in price from $150 to $300.
Some new digital TV sets may in
clude a built-in digital-to-analog out
put, eliminating the need for a sepia
rate set-top converter, consumer elec
tronics officials said. New digital prod
ucts should be on the market by Christ
mas 1998, they said.
Even with the new sets, most of
the nation’s nearly 68 million cable
TV subscribers will have to use their
TV’s rabbit ears or a rooftop antenna
to receive the digital signals.
Tele-Communications Inc.’s sys
tem in Hartford, Conn., is now the
only cable operator in the country that
has gone digital. More cable systems
are preparing to go digital, but until
they do, viewers will have to rely on
The Federal Communications
Commission’s plan caps 10 years of
work to clear the way for the biggest
television advance since color in the
Stations owned by or affiliated with
the ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox net
works in the nation’s 10 largest TV
markets will be required to begin pro
viding some digital broadcasts within
two years.
Those markets are: New York, Los
Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San
Francisco, Boston, Washington, Dal
las-Fort Worth, Detroit and Atlanta.
Network-owned and affiliated sta
tions in the next 20 largest markets
will have 30 months, and the remain
der of U.S. stations will have five
The commission already has re
ceived written pledges from 23 sta
tions in the top 10 markets to offer
some digital broadcasts within 18
months — in time for the 1998 holi
day shopping season.
“We’re reinventing analog TV ...
and we’re making it a digital business
for the 21st century ...,” said FCC
Chairman Reed Hundt.
Commissioner Susan Ness called
the FCC’s buildout plan for stations
“rapid, rigorous but yet reasonable.”
The FCC leaves it up to the sta
tions to decide whether to move up to
an even better form of digital, high
definition television. Stations will be
free to broadcast as little or as much
HDTV programming as they want.
With the new digital technology,
TV stations could cram more services
into their airwave space. For example,
they could offer sports scores to laptop
computer users or even establish a
separate pay-for-view sports channel.
But the FCC is requiring the stations
to continue providing free TV service.