New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - September 7, 1995, New Braunfels, Texas
Herald-Zeitunq □ Thursday . September 7 .1995 0 7
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j> JFilms in Focus
• Bom: 1960, in Malaga, Spain.
• Was: A model and waiter.
• Films: "Women on the Verge of a Mental Breakdown," "Tie Me Up!
Tie Me Down!" "Mambo Kings," "Philadelphia."
• Fact: Madonna used to have a crush on him;
Melanie Griffith is his new love.
• Plays: El Mariachi in "Desperado" and a hit man with Sylvester Stallone in the upcoming "Assassins."
Coplay News Service
By David Elliott sad Arthur Salm Copley News Service
“BEYOND RANGOON” — Apart from bringing to us the hell of modern Burma, this movie reveals Patricia Arquette as a major presence, and with enough talent not to let the presence down. Arquette plays Dr. Laura Bowman. At times she is the dazed, unblinking eye at the center of two converging storms: One is personal anguish. Laura’s husband and son were murdered by a thief in America, and now she can’t practice medicine; she can’t bear blood. The other is the agony of Burma, brutalized by its military, a place almost off the tourist map, where Laura has gone on a therapeutic trip contrived by her sister (Frances McDormand). “Beyond Rangoon" is a crash course for people who don’t know Burma from Burma-Shave, and a shocker for anyone It is a movie of buzzing beauty and energized indignation. Cast: Patricia Arquette, U Aung Ko, Frances McDormand, Spalding Gray, Victor Slezak. (Elliott) HatedR ★★★V.
“DESPERADO” — This movie seems made for those of us who laughed through most of the Sergio Leone spaghetti westerns and who never quite felt pious about either Leone or star Clint Eastwood. Director (and producer, writer, editor) Robert Rodriguez has some of the piety but gladly shoots it full of holes in “Desperado." The more extremely macho and posturing the movie is, the funnier. Antonio Banderas plays El Mariachi, who dresses in black, walks mostly in shadow and carries a guitar case with an armory of guns under the guitar facade. He can strum a fair guitar but is a Segovia only with weaponry. The man prays like a matador before killings, finds time to instruct a boy in guitar basics, makes love to the sexpot owner (Salma Hayek) of Carolina’s Cafe Bookstore — she and the books are about the only things in town that don’t draw flies — and, after a
good slaughter workout, goes to confession: “Forgive me. Father, for I have just killed quite a few men.” Cast: Antonio Banderas, Steve Buscemi, Joaquim de Almeida, Salma Hayek, Cheech Marin, Quentin Tarantino. (Elliott) Rated R. ★★★
“LORD OF ILLUSIONS" — Written and directed by Clive Barker (“Hellraiser"), “Lord of Illusions” delivers on cruelty, torture, satanic ritual, brutality, im-palings, rotting flesh, morphing flesh and naked flesh. Still, Barker fails to deliver on horror. By leaving nothing to the imagination, he strands the audience in gross-out land, with little to wonder about save how the crew got those nails to look as if they really were being driven into that guy’s head. Cast: Scott Bakula, Daniel Von Bergen, Kevin J. O’Connor, Famke Janssen, Barry Del Sherman. (Salm) Rated R. ★
By David Elliott Copley News Service
“Desperado” seems made for those of us who laughed through most of the Sergio Leone spaghetti westerns and who never quite felt pious about either Leone or star Clint Eastwood.
Leone built in some intentional laughs (played deadpan by Eastwood, dead by his victims), but he also had plenty of reverence for the westerns that had come before, from directors like John Ford and John Sturges. His most devout fans bought into both feelings: the rococo parody of westerns, and the sense of. dealing in a manly, even holy tradition.
Director (and producer, writer, editor) Robert Rodriguez has some of the piety but gladly shoots it full of boles in “Desperado." The more extremely macho and posturing the movie is, the funnier. It’s a mod-Mex western for those who know MTV more than Leone (let alone Ford), and for those to whom a raised guitar has always been
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heroic phallic artillery.
Antonio Banderas plays El Mariachi — a nod to Rodriguez’s $7,000 starter film, “El Mariachi”
— who dresses in black, walks mostly in shadow and carries a git. tar case with an armory of guns lunier the guitar facade. He can strum a fair guitar but is a Segovia only with weaponry.
The man prays like a matador before killings, finds time to instruct a boy in guitar basics, makes love to the sexpot owner (Salma Hayek) of Carolina’s Cafe Bookstore — she and the books are about the only things in town that don’t draw flies — and, after a good slaughter workout, goes to confession: “Forgive me, Father, for I have just killed quite a few men.”
After a comic overture, expertly acted and narrated by Steve Buscemi as a nervous, nervy gringo out of his element, the border town turns into an inferno. El Mariachi arrives, keen to revenge himself on Bucho (Joaquim de Almeida), the drug lord whose white suits and black limo make him seem a dandy of deadliness.
First on the wipeout list is the pesthole cantina, where Cheech Marin is a sneering, low-life bartender. El Mariachi moves on to other squads of Bucho’s goon army, and blood sprays, bodies fly, the camera ogles. Bucho gets very mad. And Carolina delights in pulling bullets and knives out of El Mariachi’s hunky body.
English may not be Banderas’ best language, but that is no handicap here. He acts with his hips and his glower, as the movie showcases his hunkitude. He moves like a Brando panther, choreographed for the highest macho modeling, with the sullen, coiled power of a stud who find his own sexiness a narcotic.
Like horror specialist Sam Raimi, Rodriguez is a genre exploder and works up a pulpy lather without losing control. He pulls off comic violence of wild virtuosity, revels in blood, grunge, gutter humor, absurd showdowns. He has Quentin Tarantino as a victim (after telling a very funny joke), and the music of Los Lobos to sock and salsify the story. He loves stuff like the rapturously edited lovemaking of El Mariachi and Carolina, bodies contorting in candlelight, topped by Bucho in bed with a whore, bored and burping cigar smoke.
There are a few dud bits, and when Banderas and Hayek try to let potent emotions fly, seriously, the result is misplaced sincerity. But there are so many giddy highs — including Banderas’ obvious joy in spoofing his own image as a Latin love god — that “Desperado” becomes the spiciest joy of summer.
“Desperado” is rated R. ★ ★★
★★★★ — Excellent. ★★★-Worthy.
★★ — Mixed.
★ - Poor.
NO STARS - Dog.
NR — Not Rated.
'The Babysitters Club7
By Jerry Roberts Copley News Service
If you’re not a preteen girl, the phenomenon of “The Baby-sitters Club” may have escaped your purview.
Beginning with “Kristy’s Great Idea” in 1986, the 200-plus title library of Baby-sitters Club Books have sold a combined 125 million copies in 19 languages, according to Columbia Pictures, which is releasing “The Baby-sitters Club,” a wholesome slumber party of a movie.
Meaning, if you’re a preteen girl, you’ll probably really like it And if you’re not, it’s slumber time in your theater seat
The movie stars Schuyler (pronounced Sky-ler) Fisk as tomboy Kristy, who comes up with the idea of forming a baby-sitting camp so she and her friends can stay together through the summer and make some money, too.
But most of her 13-year-old friends are going through changes. Families, boyfriends and the local group of pompous, snotty girls (in fictional Stonybrook, Conn.) have ways of breaking up that old gang of Kristy’s.
Her wayward and irresponsible post-hippie-type biological father (Peter Horton) returns to town and Kristy’s hoping that he’ll get back together with her mom (Brooke Adams).
Better not hope too much, Kristy. Fixes are gotten into and lessons are learned in that summer prior to the first vestiges of full teen-dom.
Other adults in director Melanie Mayron’s cast include Ellen Bur-styn and Bruce Davison. Kristy’s six closest friends are enacted by Bre Blair (Stacey), Rachael Leigh Cook (Mary Anne), Larisa Oleynik (Dawn), Tricia Joe (Claudia), Stacey Linn Ramsower (Mallory) and Zelda Harris (Jessi). Fisk, the daughter of actress Sissy Spacek
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and director Jack Fisk — who’s named after Schuyler Mountain in her home state of Virginia — acquits herself well.
“The Baby-sitters Club” is rated PG. ★★*
'Lord of Illusions'
By Arthur Salm Copley News Service
Written and directed by Clive Barker (“Hellraiser”), “Lord of Illusions” delivers on cruelty, torture, satanic ritual, brutality, im-palings, rotting flesh, morphing flesh, naked flesh and — what’s that say again? Oh, yes — gouts of blood.
Still, Barker fails to deliver on horror. By leaving nothing to the imagination, he strands the audience in gross-out land, with little to wonder about save how the crew got those nails to look as if they really were being driven into that guy’s head.
“Lord of Illusions” gets downright sloppy, as characters are introduced, then dropped. Barker the writer imagines that punching up dialogue involves random inser-
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tion of profanity. Barker the director seems unable gracefully to move characters from one room to another, wondering “How did he get there?” does not enhance suspension of disbelief.
Neither, for that matter, does wondering “What am J doing hereT
“Lord of Illusions” is ruled R. ★
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For the month of September, we are running Lunch Spectate Monday through Friday From Ham - 2pm
Monday Came Guisada, rice, beans, lettuce &
/ // >/ /. / / tuesday ^-Enchilada, chaluka, or taco
Where there Af a kiexta ereraaau/
u to and guacamole..................................$2.9$
Cantina Special© Wedne8day ^-Enchilada. chalupa.
r beans, tostada con queso............$2.99
Margarita 5pedals Thursday #3-Enchiiada. taco, rice and beans.
5pm until closing $2.99
jfraQQ Friday #4—2 Enchiladas, rice, beans, lettuce,
I with purchase tomato, tostada con queso.........$2 99
of any entree No substitution. nease
Located in front of Courtyard Shopping Center Take Out Orders Available
195 IH 35 Wept • New Braunfels, Tx • 629-4444 • Sunday - Thursday Ham - 10pm • Friday & Saturday 11am - Hpm