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Because of Effects
By C.C. Reader Staff Writers
Summer cinema traditionally takes us on vacations into imagination, and this
summer was no exception to the rule. Among the season’s offering of films whose
special effects were designed to transport the audience on imaginary journeys,
four of particular interest were Star Trek 11, The Secret of Ninth, Trim, and E.T.
We aging Trekkies continue to buy tickets for the voyage of the Enterprise, at
tempting “to boldly go" back to the days when Admiral Kirk was only a Captain,
and Vulcans didn’t cry. We also continue to make excuses to ourselves for the crew
caught in the warp of a bad script, because there isn’t enough energy in its
dialogue to move its heavy plot.
Ricardo Montalban, as Khan, the super-genius criminal type with a grudge
against Kirk, leads his group of 1960 punk-rock baddies from an outer-space box
car, where the most improbable lifeforms since the Hippies spend their remaining
days in a terrarium. Even Spock’s “death” could not pull this one out of the web of
cliches—basically speaking, Star Trek n is constantly square. But there were
some good shots of the Enterprise, and she may have one more flight before Star
ship Command puts her in mothballs., Maybe next summer....
Super-intelligence of a more endearing kind than Khan’s is revealed in The
Secret of Nimh. Based on Robert C. O’Brien’s Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh,
this animated film uses color effectively to enhance its special story of an
thropomorphic animals, the magical properties of a courageous heart, and the an
cient question of the potential of knowledge to effect good or evil ends.
The farmer’s cat is more malevolent than feline, the owl is awesomely unowlish,
and the bad rats are VERY bad indeed, but Mrs. Brisby (whose name was chang
ed) is a winsomely mousy heroine and Jeremy, the lovesick crow, lightens the ten-
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sion with his fumbling pursuit of Miss Right. Characterization, animation, color,
and design are reminiscent of the films once produced by Disney Studios. The
Secret of Nimh is a cause of delight to all but the most jaded sensibilities.
Meanwhile back at the Disney Studios, live actors, animation and special effects
emphasizing hand-colored action frames transport the viewer into the inner work
ings of a computer where personified programs play gladitorial games in Tran.
The dialogue and acting are weak, but color intensity and computer game concepts
keep it interesting throughout the inevitable unfolding of the simplistic plot.
Although the Master Control computer villain is a disappointment, the programs
are cleverly contrived and a little “Bit” puts enough feeling into its electronic
“Yes” and “No” to steal a scene from the humans. The new Disney team has taken
a step forward in creative film-making which should close the gap in credibility
left by The Black Hole.
The re-release of Star Wan brought its magic back to the summer screen,
another Friday the 13th festered gore in 3-D, and a Poltergeist terrorized a subur
ban family, but the indisputable star of the season has been Steven Spielberg’s
E.T. An extra-terrestrial Dorothy, stranded on Earth with no ruby slippers, E.T.
charms his way into the hearts of the viewers, following a Reese’s Pieces Road to a
rainbow’s end—where a pot of gold awaits Spielberg.
Summer cinema traditionally takes us on vacations into imagination,
and this summer was no exception to the rule. Among the season's
offerings of films whose special effects were designed to transport the
audience on imaginary journeys, four of particular interest were Star
Trek 11, The Secret of NIMH, Tron.a nd E .T.
It’s hokey, but, from the sounds of sniffing and sobbing in the theater, it works.
While E.T. is a cute little cross between Yoda and R2D2, the effect that makes this
film special is the treatment of its characters. As done when he made a memorable
film of Peter Benchley’s forgettable novel, Jaws, Spielberg creates characters
who remain realistic yet build a solid foundation for his fantasies. E.T. is the im
aginary friend of our childhood, the personification of our longing for the time
when “HOME” was the bedtime-story place where all the endings were happy.
Because of the effects, it was a special cinematic summer.
News From The Muse
By Mary E. Diehl
Lovers of poetry—readers, writers and listeners—will be glad to know that poets
are alive, well and welcome on Capitol Campus.
Dr. Theodora Graham of the Humanities Department is offering “a slow-paced
and loving study” of modern poetry designed to help students learn to read and
understand modern poets.
Dr. Graham encourages original projects and presentations, so this course
presents an opportunity for creative expression as well as the fun of learning more
Currently in the Gallery Lounge, local poet Jane Todd Cooper is displaying her
poetry with the photography of Ellen Siddons. Ms. Cooper and Ms. Siddons have
presented their work jointly at several Central Pennsylvania activities, blending
an interesting and topical union of diverse art forms. Their poetry and
photography will remain on exhibit in the Gallery Lounge until October 8.
TARNHELM, the Capitol Campus Literary Magazine, reports that several sub
missions for the 1982-83 edition were received from summer students. Submission
forms and information regarding TARNHELM are available in WlO4, Student Ac
tivities Office. People interested in creative writing are encourage to join the TAR
NHELM staff: sign up at the TARNHELM Office, Room W 129; in Student Ac
tivities, W 104; or drop us a line in the TARNHELM mailslot in the Student Govern
ment Association suite, WHO. Copies of past issues of TARNHELM are in the
Periodicals Department of the Heindel Library for your enjoyment.
To start the fall season, we have two autumnal poems by a Capitol Campus
Humanites major, Eowyn Stark. The first, “Augury,” attempts to capture the
sounds and feelings of the seasonal transition, while the second, “Autumn Sing
ing,” uses the rhythm and rhyme patterns of the Finnish epic poem “The
Kalevala” to sing the pleasures of life’s middle years.
Cicadas crack the summer husk;
crickets keep cadence
The frozen moon is full.
Breath from the north
AUTUMN SINGING ——
I have seen the song of summer Songs of life in me are growing
I have heard it sing its passing Words of love in me are forming
I have smelled the green leaves turning lam shyly smiling.
Felt the woolybear’s soft crossing.
In the sky the Great Bear’s turning Heavy with the fruit of summer
Brings the Hunter of the Winter. Boughs of golden trees are turning
Why am I not crying. Barns with golden corn are tilling
In the autumn of my lifetime Bins with pears and apples filling
When my auburn hair is greying Sheds with oak and ash for burning
Winds of age to come are blowing Keeping warm throughout the winter
Snow of death to come is framing, lam ripe and thriving. Eowyn Stark
shrinks the sun ark;
grass dreams in sepia
castanets of ice