Newsday (Suffolk Edition) from Melville, New York on July 30, 1982 · 123
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Newsday (Suffolk Edition) from Melville, New York · 123

Melville, New York
Issue Date:
Friday, July 30, 1982
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f'Th kit The Secret of NIMH (G) The family of a widowed country mouse la threatened by a farmer’s plowing A luminously rich distinctively voiced tribute to classic ’40s Disney animation Unladed 6-year-olds add a star At area theaters By Alex Keneas "The Secret of NIMH” is the first feature maria by a group of animators who following the lead of Don Bluth resigned en masse from Disney three years ago to set up shop in Bluth’s garage Bluth the only one of the 17 artists to have worked for the studio while Walt Disney was still alive left because he felt it no longer upheld the high animation standards set by its founder So "NIMH” is tlie product of Bluth & Co’s self-appointed custodianship of vintage Disney It’s also a beautifully crafted adventure a return to a finely detailed Disney world in which animal creatures move fluidly occupy a space with depth bathe in a gorgeous palate of color — 600 different shades in all — and play out a story that limpid simplicity itself also has a moral There’s even a bit of the scary Halloween-night gothic Disney in "NIMH” Obviously great pains have been taken to hand-paint backgrounds to simulate shadows and the light-reflectingabaorbing properties of objects in a real world At the entrance of a cave the tints of a mellow sunset filter onto the walls and floor A magic amulet with vibrant red stone lends a pale purple glow to the flssb of the hand that encloses it Soap bubbles mirror images as they float by Faces take on the hues of light sources And if that were not enough "NIMH” also orchestrates mood through color and intensity changes from wistful blue-greens to perilous hot orangeyreds as field mouse Brisby endeavors to save Timmy bed-ridden with pneumonia and her other young from the scheduled spring plowing Brisby (with the sweetly maternal voice of Elizabeth Hartman) enlists the aid of a bust of discrete characters — Jeremy a hyperactive citified crow who keeps tripping over himself (Dom DeLuise who’s a good deal more comic here than he was full-bodied in "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas”) Auntie Shrew Hermione Baddeley’s snippy British dowager Great Owl given authority by John Carradine’s sonorous hsM and Nicodemus Derek Jacobi’s compassionate elder statesman of the intelligent rats of NIMH (the National Institute of Mental Health) And as they deliver ’’NIMH’s” crisply written narrative the drawing-board creations come to life Papa Walt would have been pleased tt Night Shift R Racy doings at the city morgue as Henry Winkler a wimpy clerk starts a call-girl operation among the cadavers partnered by Michael Keaton Slick farcical sitcom that wants to be poignant At local theaters girls need some sort of benevolent protection jiwri things being what they are between Chuck and fiancee Charlotte Predictably romance blooms (and fades and renews) anri Chuck agrees to set up shop with Billy They only an agent’s 10 per cent from the ladies set up pension plans for them manage their money even buy them a burger franchise Art does not necessarily imitate life which is not to say that the prostitution in "Night Shift” is any more ridiculous or romanticized than the goin’s-on at last week’s chicken ranch in Texas Still not content to leave this benign fantasy of middle-clasB free-enterprise procuring alone director Bon Howard wants Chuck to change to become less meek which he does But it’s an awkard turnaround — one moment he’s insisting on his old life the next staring down his bullying canine neighbor sending it away with a whine And though Keaton s manirally hip Billy is funny and the right foil for Winkler’s milk-toast it’s a chemistry lavished ultimately on sentimental com Swamp Thing (PG) Well at least It runs only 92 minutes Based on DC comic book characters and featuring a vegetable monster-hero who looks like a man In a greenish rubber Jumpsuit which basically Is what he Is Adrienne Barbeau and In the-what's-a-nlce-guy-like-you category Louis Jourdan At area theaters We’ll say this for "Swamp Thing”: It has an Chuck Lumley (Henry Winkler) is the kind of guy who wont send back the wrong sandwich for fear of offending the delivery boy astonishing verisimilitude to the low-budget ’50s horror movie Producers could spend millions and not replicate the flavor — the mediocre camerawork the poor sound and color the wooden performances Trouble is "Swamp Thing” is about as scary as a chefs salad Not that it was really intended to be a fright movie It’s a commando-style action adventure But its idea of excitement a to be Adrienne Barbeau continually shouting for help while the Swamp Thing slowly turns 90 degrees to catch her direction Has the good guy He used to be a doctor (Ray Wise) but in a struggle over his formula he got doused with it and now he’B a superstrong plantanimal thing He and Barbeau were conducting experiments at a secret government research compound that must have been Mwnhlari from the remnants of a seedy hotel in Belize and set down in an Evergladeslike cypress swamp They were trying to better mankind But Louis Jourdan who wanted the formula so he could control the world hired these thugs who carried machine guns and wore rammiflagn fatigues and wiped just about everbody out Jourdan who has played a pretty fair premia in his time is the heavy then But in a an n he’s also the most valiant of the swamp denizens considering how he strains to pump life into the silliness We wish we could say that there were lots of unintentional laughs to be milked from Jourdan's fruitily ripe accented dialogue but there aren’t Ricardo Montal-ban is much funnier in "Fantasy Island" ii who’s pushed around by his neurotic diet-conscious and frigid fiancee his shrewish mother his boss even the big black snarling dog that guards the entry to Chuck’s walk-up apartment In short Chuck is one of the meek who have inherited New York City He’d rather not make waves Enter Billy Blazejowski (Michael Keaton) his new partner at the morgue Billy is a kind of space cadet a ball of entrepreneurial fire who frays Chuck’s nerves by yammering nonstop much of the time into his tape recorder repository of such get-rich-quick schemes as feeding mayonnaise to tuna fish and more to the point here turning the night morgue into an escort service” t Chuck of course wants no part of it but then there’s the rate little hooker (Shelley Long) who lives next door and whose pimp has been murdered and ehe and the rest of the Nicodemus leader of the rats counsels Mrs Brisby in a scene from The Secret of NIMH’ above At left Henry Winkler busses Shelley Long in 'Night Shift’ preview Numben a end of Ndi lifting represent the movie thefter that has tha corresponding number on me timetable wmcb appears on Page B NEW ON LONG ISLAND m m oftca mo a GENTLEMAN Louis Gossett Jr earns his stripes asj hard-noseo drill instructor but as a military drama romance it doesn't mane it over the top Richard Gere Debra Winger (32 75 122 ww W (H) NIGHT SHIFT Racy doings at the city morgue as Henry Winkier a wimoy clem starts a call-girl operation among me cadavers partnered by Micnaei Keaton Slick farocai sitcom that warns to be poignant (12 11 14 43 94 BE 77 02 96 122 122 127 131 162 in 172 162 112 in 2BZ WWW (G) THE SECRET OF NIMH The family of a widowed countiy mouse is threatened by a farmer's plowing A luminously ncn distinctively voiced tribute to classic '40s Disney animator Uniaded 6-year-oids add a star (22 n 42 n 61 7211 2 111 112 132 112 192 202 212 227 (PG) SWAMP THING Well at least it runs only 92 minutes Based on DC comic book characters and featuring a vegetable monster-lwro who looks lute a man in a greenish ruober jumpsuit which basically is what ne is Adrienne Barbeau and in the-what's-a-mce-guy-iike-you category Louis Jourdan (172 112 192 211 22BJ REVIEWS ww W (PG) ANNI2 Overproduced undeiwneiming screen version of the musical piay based on the Little Orphan Annie comic strip Aileen Quinn Albert Rn-ncy Carol Burnett Ann Ranking Tim Curry Bernadette Peters (32 42 92 92 102 112 142 162 172 101 102 102 207 ww (PG) ARTHUR Screwball fame about the world's richest drunk Flimsy plot redeemed by amusing one-liners and the virtuoso performances of Dudley Moore as the devil-may-care piayooy and John Gielgud as ms snobbish vaiet Won La Minnelli (42 162 171 210 WWW (PG) AUTHOR! AUTHOR! Lightweight diversion about a writer whose wife walks out on him during rehearsals of his play leaving him with five kids At Pacino Tuesday Weld Dyan Cannon (12 22 32 42 67 142 177aU WW (PG) BATTLE OEYONO THE STAR! A space opera that's part spoof of "Star Wars" and "Seven Samurei" Richard Thomas leads a motley group of professionals to defend a peaceable planet from annihilation With Robert Vaughn George Peppard (ft) WW (ft BBT U1TIE WHOREHOUSE 91 TEXA2 THE Not by a long shot A limp attempt to raise the Broadway musical Burt Reynolds and upper Dolly Par-ton (12 2 22 37 42 72 02 97 107 131 132 191 162 162 172 112 1B2 200 202 216 WWW (ft BLADE RUNNER Cop hunta down tour rogue humanoid robots in tne year 2021 Dulling high-tech vision of the near-future But the mood is gnm and Hamson Ford's seedy detecbve a everybody's punching bag Inspired by e Philip K Dick novel directed by Ridley ("Alien") Scott (V-oience some nudity) (2 2 12 31 62 51 62 72 OBe 132 142 142 102 1792 162 192 202 217 222 224 WWW m BOOT HEAT Unfaithful wife and her lover kill hr husband Sleek erotic film making clockwork drama Wilkam Hurt and Kathleen Turner (Explicit sex profanity) (31 72 197 172 204 wW (R) CAT PEOPLE A zoo curator falls m love with a panther woman in a diaioimed muddle of grepnc gore explicit simulated sex occult hokum romance and comedy Nastasia Kinski Joh" Heard Malcolm McOoweU Annette O'Toole (Nudity violence) no WW (l THE CNAUBIGt A sight variation on the standard martial —Continued sex: pxge D

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