Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on August 17, 1975 · Page 99
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Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 99

Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, August 17, 1975
Page 99
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Caan lifeless in 'RollerbaW By James F. Dent "ROLLERBALL," James Caan, John Houseman. Plaza East. **%. In the not too distant future, according to the premise of this film, there will be no hunger in the world, no poverty, no want; Nations will have been wiped out by bankruptcy and war and the world will be ruled by six conglomerate corporations - Energy, Food, Transportation, Pleasure,.etc. Man,will be free to do what he wants to do so long as he does not question the decisions of the Corporate State. Wars will be unnecessary and will have disappeared. Humanity will be divided into Executives, Workers - and the Jocks who, to satisfy the lingering desire for violence, play a world wide sport pitting the team of one corporate state against another. The sport of this future 'world -the only sport -- is Rollerball, a bloody mixture of roller derby, motorcycle racing, basketball and free for all street fighting in which serious injuries are expected and violent death is not uncommon and is accepted as a part of the entertainment. James Caan is Jonathan E., captain of the Houston Energy corporation rollerball team "(and the only person in the movie with an initial to go with his name.) He has been in the game for 10 years and, to the dismay of the corporation, which wants no heroes, is becoming individually popular. Fans have taken to chanting his name in unison at matches and there are signs that he is about to emerge as a distinct personality, above the faceless mob. Jonathan is advised by the corporation executive (John Houseman) to retire. But he resists. The rules of the game are changed -- no substitutions, no time limits -- to make rollerball even more : vicious, more deadly and, hopefully, to frighten Jonathan out: He stays. In a match with Tokyo, Jonathan's friend, the Compleat Mindless Jock (John Beck) is killed although medical technique keeps his heart beating and his lungs pumping and Jonathan takes the conscienceless inert body home-with him. The climax comes finally in the championship game with New York where the rollerball track is littered with the dead and dying, the burning hulks of machines and men.' What ''Roller-bail" wants to celebrate is the triumph of man, the individual, over the. computerized, anonymous state.' It doesn't quite succeed. For one thing it fails to convince this member of the audience, for one, that Rollerball could become the Ultimate Sport, driving millions of people to frenzy. Rollerball seems less interesting than either professional football or professional basketball although I understand that, ironically, there is some actual discussion about forming real Rollerball leagues since, the movie appeared. Caan, for some reason, seems lifeless in his role in contrast to the vitality he usually brings to his assignments. Beck is good as his un- SHOWTIME,-August 17,1975 FilmReview complicated buddy and Houseman is appropriately cold as the menacing executive. All the women in the film -- Maud Adams, Pamela Hensley, Barbara Trentham -- appear to have come directly from television cosmetic commercials. (Women's liberationists are not going to appreciate this movie at all since the function of the female in the world to come appears to be to accept assignment to any male the corporation sends her to to be used as he sees fit.) The palm for the best acting job in the movie goes unreservedly to Sir Ralph Richardson who plays the bumbling keeper of the world's central computer, the depository of all human knowledge. Things are not going well for Sir Ralph and Zero, his computer, since the machine has just managed to misplace the entire 13th century. "There wasn't much there -- Dante and a few disreputable popes," says Sir Ralph, but you can tell the computer's shortcomings have upset him as he gives it a vicious kick or two in passing. This scene gives the moviegoer an idea of what the film might have been if, say, Woody Allen had got his hands on it. Burger CM You get a Super She), a Big Shef, a Cheeseburger, a Hamburger and Four kprders of Regular French Fries. FEED A FAMILY OF FOUR FOR ONLY $ NOW PLAYING A delightful, fun-filled comedy concerning the study, of marital human relations. CHARLESTON 755-1I11 Boon Ofmn 6 p.m. Doily . /' i 4 p.m. Sun.-- Cloitd Won. , .. , 1 Super Shef* and 10rder .. French Fries IBigShef* and 10der French Fries 1 Cheeseburger and 10rder French Fries ItVE 82 EVBtY SWAY (ALL DAT) 1 Hamburger I and 10rder French Fries There are no FINER DIAMOND RINGS SUNDAY SPECIAL · New York Strip f FiletC 4t C AI · Sirloin ·Kama* City * f+V\ 11 .ludei FFofBaktd Potato Burger Chef M«rt{MMry,W.Va. «14MocCo*WAv.. « 5W Ay.. CrmLMK CbarintM 551«B!gTrl.rR««i. j^w.wofc^ons,. Si.CWwtwi SLUMS J4M MocCoriW AMI. 421 MacCofib Aw. ManMt Ifh 702 W. Main St. Permanent Registration, loss protec-- tion, perfect quality assured by Keepsake. Keepsake' SSttMisOnTheBasJMSsmM I Secretary Lund Daly Rctutmd Diamond Rinp CALVM of Spring Hill 4833 MocCorkle Ave. PH. 768-8821 EIVTAM, LTD. West Virginia's N OPBiSMt/tlUMMKIIT SUNDAYS K ANAWHA CITY CLUBHOUSE 4102MacCtrkleAK.S.E. S28 TUESDAY ^AUGUST 198PM namoHuutew FESTIVAL SEATING $5.50 LIMITED ADVANCE CIVIC CENTER. SEARS, SSC, TAPE CITY STORES, . GCKWY'S.'TURNER'S, PEPPERLAM3, BUDGET TAPE, MTRO BEVERAGE STATIONERS, KEEN JEWELERS, NATL RECORD MART PARK, HECK'S -- BEaiEY, MUSIC MART - OAK HILL, ORCHD SHOP LOGAN, ALCOVE -- GAUIPCHIS. BAUER SOUND -FT. PLEASANT, QUICKSkVER-MONTGOMERY ELECTRONIC PLAZA.--PUTNAM VILLAGE, TV CENTEB RECORO SHOP--WILLIAMSON. MAILORDERS LYNYRD SKYNYRD, C/O ENTAM LTD. REYNOLDS ST., CHARLESTON, W. VA. 25301 . CALL 348-8070 FOR INFORMATION IN ASSOCIATION WITH WKAZ DAJVI ELS B4 \ D CHARLESTON CIVIC CENTER r ++rfHROBERTSTIGWOOD JERRY WEINTRAUB JRESENTf JHMMr^ New Low Prices! · was S3.45 T-Bone Steak.. Rustler Strip Steak, was $2.40 Rib-Eye Steak ..........was $1. $2.99 2.19 189 AND HIS HAN!) JAMIE OLDAKER CARL RADIE SPECIAL GUEST POCO DICK SIMMS GEORGE TERRY THURSDAY AUG. 28, 8P.M. TICKETS ON SALE NO W FESWAl SEATING J6JO LIMITED ADVANCE CIVIC CENTER. SEARS.'SK, TAPE CITY STORES, GORBY'S, TURNER'S, PEPPERLAND, KJDGET TAPE. NITRO BEVERAGE. STATIONER, KEEN JEWELERS, NATL RECORD MART-PARK, HECKS BECKLEY. MUSIC MART - OAK MKL ORCHID SHOP - LOGAN. Al COVE - GAUBOIIS, BAUER SOUND - PT. PLEASANT, QUICKSILVER - MONTGOMERY. ELECTRONIC PLAZA - PUTNAM VILLAGE, W CENTER RECORD SHOP-- WILLIAMSON MAIL ORDER ERIC CLAPTON, C/O CIVIC CENTER REYNOLDS ST., CHARLESTON. W.VA. 25301 CALL 348-8070 FOR INFORMATION IUU"Ky«» 9M»*B* . . . . . . . . . . was » i. M MW 1/2 to. Chopped Steak wassi 99 1.89 LuryeDrjjik.... Regular Prink i was 30C · was 40C i was 30C ALL DINNERS INCLUDE FRESH GARDEN SALAD. TOASTED ROLL. BAKED POTATO STEAK HOUSE CHARLESTON Lewis and Morris Sts. (At East End Plaza Shopping Center) Use Want Ads. Dial 348-4848 ·CHARLESTON, W. VA /9m

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