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Star Tribune from Minneapolis, Minnesota • Page 70
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Star Tribune from Minneapolis, Minnesota • Page 70

Star Tribunei
Minneapolis, Minnesota
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Variety PACEE10 STAR TRIBUNE SATURDAY, OCTOBER 28 1995 Thriller 'Copycat more effective than flawed ill- Cl wwi'iiN. 4 iuj 4 jr' I Movie review Copycat Out of a possible five stars Starring: Holly Hunter and Si-gourney Weaver. Director: Jon Amiel. Review: Although the plotting of this mystery-thriller about a copycat killer is flawed, Hunter (as a cop) and Weaver (as a woman in peril) drive the show with strong performances. Rating: violence. Where: Brookdale Square, Burnhaven, Chaska, Eagan, East Bethel, Eden Prairie East, Elk River, Highland, Mall of America, Maple Grove, Maple-wood Northtown, Pavilion, Rosemount, St. Anthony Main, St. Louis Park, Shelard Park, Signal Hills, White Bear, Woodbury and Yorktown. Photo provided by Red House Records Kaplansky draws on her background in psychology when writing songs. Treating the characters in classic rock songs Dhntn nrAilHoH Mnnarrhu Fntrnricpc Sigourney Weaver (left), Dermot Mulroney and Holly Hunter in "Copycat." By Jeff Strickler Star Tribune Staff Writer The "woman in peril" theme is not always a politically correct one these days, especially when the peril comes from a homicidal maniac whose attacks have sexual overtones. But in "Copycat," British director Jon Amiel finds a solution the "good guy" is a "good gal." Strong performances from Si-gourney Weaver (woman in peril) and Holly Hunter (woman rushing to the rescue) drive this mystery-thriller. The plotting is a bit lazy; two scenes in particular are clumsy, and contorted illogically to set up the climax. But if you can overlook those heavy-handed manipulations and Weaver and Hunter help a lot in that regard the film will send a shiver or two up your spine. M.J. Monahan (Hunter) is a sharp San Francisco detective whose low-key style reminds the viewer of TV's "Columbo." On the scene of a murder, she's friendly and chatty, almost to the point of appearing relaxed. But her eyes drink in every detail, and her gently prodding questions uncover facts that her more-confrontational (i.e., male) counterparts miss. She's assigned to investigate a series of particularly grotesque murders. She can't determine any pattern to the killings; the victims other than being female don't share any particular characteristic or background, and the styles of their murders are quite dissimilar. She's at a dead end when she hears from Helen Hudson (Weaver), a criminal psychologist who like when you go see a movie and you kind of really believe you're there. "Luka," by Suzanne Vega: It's clearly about an abused child who, in classic abused-child style, thinks it's his own fault that he's being beaten. He's trying all these kind of crazy things to keep himself in this little box so he won't do anything that will make him get hit. Of course, he keeps getting hit and doesn't understand that it has nothing to do with what he's doing. "Losing My Religion," by REM: It's this person who is despairing and forlorn, who feels so abandoned. The character knows he has lost this person. He's just devastated and filled with despair. "It Ain't Me, Babe," by Bob Dylan: This is a woman who is utterly dependent and has infantile kinds of needs. She's looking for a good mother, not a peer. The person wants someone to utterly take care of them, to make them feel safe in the world, to make everything OK. And, of course, nobody can do that for anybody else. A child is allowed to have these things, but not an adult. "Paint It Black," by the Rolling Stones: Freud talked about two types of mourning, one in which there's a mourning process and then you let go, the other in which you don't let go. That's where depression comes in. This is a portrait of normal mourning. The psychologist is in. Lucy Kaplansky put her love of analysis and music to the test by "treating" the characters in some classic rock songs: "Every Breath You Take," by the Police: The narrator sort of strikes me as the kind of crazy obsessiveness that someone who is "borderline" has. If you know the Glenn Close character in "Fatal Attraction," her diagnosis would be borderline. It's when you cannot allow the other to separate from you and cannot let go. It's not like, "Oh, I love you, don't leave me." It's like, "I am going to be stalking you and you're never going to be rid of me." "Just the Way You Are," by Billy Joel: The part about, "I don't want clever conversation, I wouldn't want to work that hard," seems like he's not looking for an equal. He just wants some dumb blonde. Why wouldn't you want clever conversation? That 's one of the wonderful things about being in a relationship. Talking! Challenging each other. I always saw that as a cop-out attitude, settling for something. i "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds," by the Beatles: If you don't assume it's about an acid trip, it's sort of regression to a childlike view of the world. To be able to do that as an adult is called "regression in the service of the ego," in which you can suspend reality in a healthy way, KAPLANSKY from El As parody fizzles, 'Canadian Bacon' loses its sizzle ous man Hudson believes to be the copycat killer breaks into her apartment. She tries to flee, but is paralyzed by the thought of leaving her apartment. The notion of Hudson having to decide which of her two terrifying fears is the lesser evil is a fascinating premise for a climax. But it's tucked away in the middle of the movie. When the climax finally rolls around, its hokey nature only adds to the disap- pointment. Director Amiel uses very tight framing, adding to the nervous expecta-tion that a homicidal maniac is going to jump out of the shadows at any second. And he keeps the story moving briskly. As a result, "Copycat" is much more effective than it is flawed. I 4 Photo Drovided bv Gramercv Pictures- i. i ii rk it has little resonance. But although "Canadian Bacon" finally comes -apart at the seams, it has enough comic asides to keep liberal fun- ny bones tickled. (Dermot Mulroney, "Bad ends up, in effect, having to baby-sit her. (the studio has asked critics not to reveal the identity of the killer. Seeing as how the movie reveals his identity long before the climax, the studio's request smacks of a publicity ploy. But we'll play along in large part because his identity isn't important. He's far and away upstaged by the jailed killer, played by singer and part-time actor Harry Connick Jr. with a demented edge that is about as far away from his easy-listening musical persona as it could get.) Screenwriters Ann Biderman and first-timer David Madsen have come up with a scene that demonstrates both the best and worst aspects of their script: A mysteri 1'V ni i xi a i i Candy, who filmed this before "Wagons and his gun-crazed sidekick (Rhea Perlman). The movie is so busy spearing the dragons of American aggression that its cartoonish vision of Canadians as wimpy Pollyannas has found the link: The murderer is working his way down a list of infamous mass killers, from the Boston Strangler to Son of Sam, and is recreating their crimes. But while Hudson provides valuable assistance, she's also had a recent nervous breakdown brought on by the prison escape of a particularly vicious killer she helped put behind bars. Even though he has been recaptured, Hudson has been left with such a severe case of agoraphobia that she's afraid to step out of her apartment even to pick up her newspaper. Hunter's partner Movie review Canadian Bacon Out of a possible five stars Starring: John Candy, Rhea Perlman, Alan Alda, Kevin Pollak, Rip Torn and G.D. Spradlin. Director: Michael Moore. Review: This political satire about a phony war on the U.S.-Canadian border has promise, but the parody becomes so broad that the movie loses its edge and collapses into farce. Rating: PG. Where: University Film Society's Nicholson Auditorium theater. Bacon are the bumbling sheriff of Niagara County (the late John As a folk singer, psychologist keeps two careers in balance Ever since that session, the 35-year-old singer has been balancing the two careers. I ler sets at the last two Summerfolks in Bliomington have ranked among those festivals' highlights. "The Tide," her 1994 album on Twin Cities-based Red House Records, produced by Colvin, features clever acoustic versions of Richard Thompson's "When I Get to the Border" and Sting's "Sentimental Journey." JKaplansky's gifts are best presented on the album'sintimate bajlads, such as Robin Batteau's LnJ If Selax: Letting kids pig out at alloween teaches self-control By Stephen Holden New York Times When the president of the United States decides that starting a cold war with Canada would be the most efficient way to boost his sagging popularity, the news media have a field day promoting a campaign called Operation Canadian Bacon: A Line in the Snow. Overnight the term "Canuck" acquires the same sinister connotations that once were attached to "Commie." A newscaster points to a map of the United States with maple syrup dripping over Montana and Minnesota and mutters darkly about the evil seeping across the border. Everything, from Canada's use of the metric system to Neil Young, is identified as part of a conspiracy to destroy America. The notion of a war concocted to distract the United States from its economic woes is the amusing premise behind "Canadian Bacon," a satire that aspires to be the '90s answer to "Dr. Stran-gelove." The film, written and directed by Michael Moore, goes after the selling of the Persian Gulf War and similar adventures with the same freewheeling glee with which Moore ridiculed General Motors in "Roger and Me." While it's refreshing to find Hollywood producing a political satire with bite in these cautiously conservative times, the film is much sharper in its comic details than in its overall scheme. And the parody becomes so broad that the movie loses its edge and collapses into farce. In its disappointing final third, it clings to the I Iollywood formula of a race against the clock to prevent nuclear Armageddon. Where the ending of "Dr. Stran-gelove" went over the brink, "Canadian Bacon" plays it safe. As "Roger and Me" suggested, Moore has a problem with all authority figures. So it's no surprise that his new film's major characters are all either villains or fools or both. Alan Alda's president is a grinning, poll-obsessed cipher begging his staff for advice. When he gives an address, the words come out slightly twisted. "It's time to turn off the war machine and turn on our children," he announces in one speech. I lis national security adviser (Kevin Pollak) is the personification of duplicitous yuppie evil; his chief military adviser (Rip Torn) is a jibbering, cigar-chomping warmonger. The film's most dastardly character is a weapons manufacturer (G.D. Spradlin) who smokes foot-long cigars, speaks with a Southern twang and is the only person who knows the computer codes to operate a doomsday machine known as the I lacker llcllstorm. The accidental and unworthy heroes of Operation Canadian "Guinevere," and the self-penned "The Tide," on which her sweet but bold voice shines as a rich acoustic instrument. Kaplansky said her training as a psychologist makes it easier to write songs, something she avoided doing earlier in her career. "You have to trust this unconscious process, which is actually very similar to therapy," she said. "You really have to have done some self-exploration on your own psyche or you can't effectively help anyone else." have a piece for dessert or with their afternoon snack. Moms and dads develop their own strategies for dealing with the remaining loot. Some trade the treats for a new toy or give the chocolate bars the deep freeze, hoping they'll be forgotten until freezer burn sets in. Such solutions are fine, nutritionists say, as long as parents don't go overboard and make sweets forbidden fruit. Limiting candy too much makes it more desirable to a child, and she may rebel by gorging at friends' homes or, when she gets older, spending all her allowance on Gummi Worms. Controlling their children's diet "becomes a turf battle about who is in charge," said Satter, author of "I low to Get Your Kid to Eat But Not Too Much." Rather than worry about candy, she said, parents should concentrate on helping kids establish lifelong eating habits by providing regular, nutritious meals and setting a good example themselves. For parents who still worry that sweets will spoil kids' taste for good foods, Miller offered this tale. "One day my daughter and I were doing errands before lunch, and we were starving. I opened a big bag of and we ate them by the handful. When we got home, my daughter asked, 'Can I have a 5 o) JuLbuvS 5o ByjMarie Faust Evitt Pctfenting Magazine As your favorite trick-or-treat-er gleefully shows off her I lallow-een haul, visions of dental bills and husky-size jeans dance in yohr head. Just how are you going to teach moderation in the face of all that candy? The short anfcwer is: Don't try. 'Let kids indulge themselves with I lalloween goodies said El-lyii Batter, a registered dietitian anp eating therapist in )adison, WHv'Being able to experiment with food now and again! is not a bi deal." Hn fact, collecting all your child's candy and doling it out a piaCe at a time often is counterproductive, warned Anne Fleisch-mk Miller, a registered dietitian in Cupertino, Calif. "It's preferable to let a child eat too much aiuilearn what that feels like than always try to prevent it," she satd. "Children need to learn self-regulation." While many nutritionists agree thai a one-time candy jag is OK, they differ about what to do with the rest of the I lalloween stash. Miller advised letting kids eat as as they want until the gone. "Then they'll quit thlr)king about it." Salter, on the other hand, suggested incorporating the goodies Into the family's regular diet, letting rlie kids IN AN EFFORT TO MAKE WEEKENDS FEEL LONGER, WE'VE MOVED OUR SATURDAY STAR TRIBUNE ADS TO SUNDAY. CHECK FT OUT ON THE BACK PAGE OF TODAY'S TRAVEL SECTION. YOU MIGHT WANT TO HURRY THOUGH, THE WEEKEND'S ALMOST OVER.

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