Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan on April 25, 1980 · Page 25
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Detroit Free Press from Detroit, Michigan · Page 25

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Detroit, Michigan
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Friday, April 25, 1980
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Page 25
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DETROIT FfCE PRESSFRIDAY, APRIL 25. 1980 5B Director takes a peek through looking glass f - & - . y -I mmmmxmmAhMtSmimni iiiiminiiiriinii in i i.min' -r..iMiiii,ii.iii.ia.Minii- mm in hi.muii.ii.i.hi.1 been committed to filmmaking. When he was 17, he and two friends rode a train and hiked through farms to escape Hungary and, once free, he went straight to London to find work in the movies. Medak found a job as a trainee at a British studio and spent several years working in various departments sound, editing, camera before he began to get work as a second and third director on television projects. In 1962, he came to Hollywood to work for Universal Studios as producer and second unit director on TV series like "Wagon Train," "The Virginian" and "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour." Then he went back to England to direct both TV series and an occasional feature. It was regular work, but not the sort that provides a clean artistic canvas. With "The Changeling," he thinks it may be different. He has now gone through the looking glass completely, having moved his family from England to Hollywood, where he sees a little of the magic disappear every day. "Everybody here works in the movies, it seems. Everyone's a producer or a writer or a director or an actor. You get in a taxi to go somewhere and the driver hands you a script . . . Everybody's trying to be in the right place at the right time." Jack Mathews r psr j y" I MEDAK, from Page 1B "I had just finished a project in England and was open. But if I hadn't been in . . ." Now, people are are calling regularly because, as it turned out, Medak worked a small miracle on "The Changeling," stepping in with only a month to have a new script written, sets designed and built and a cast fleshed out (only Scott and Trlsh van De-vere were signed before). "There is a terrible fight in this business for a director to become flnanceable. One is always trying to do something that is really better than others . . . You try to inject as much of your own personality into the film so that it's unique. If the film is successful, you've suddenly got the magic touch." Despite the chance factor in the movie industry, Medak has made the most of his own opportunities. From the day his aunt, an opera singer in Budapest, gave him a project and "a piece of film," he's WE CHANGELING Area Theaters John Russell George C. Scott Claire Norman Trlsh Van Dcvcre Senator Carmlchacl Mclvvn Douulas Captain DeWIII John Colicos Produced bv Joel Mlchales and Garlh Drablnskv; wrlllon bv William Grav and Diana Maddox; directed bv Peter Medak; music bv Rick Wllkins; photographed bv John Coitulllon; distributed bv Associated Film Distribution. Running lime, 113 mill. PARENTS' GUIDE: Ralcd R, violence. Peter Medak (left) checks the dialogue recorded during a day's filming of "The Changeling," in which he directed George C. Scott (top right). Theyrenoisouuw, Thnii'rP not SO darling... . . He creates new thrill from an old setting They're jus" ihenmmmAn I JESUS .. .the man you thought you knew. v V'' : il i i iV ' it' . J ,, i i I I I I I I 1 1 1 LkkA&A'' 1 I ' rfV V; fm "NT ... , - DON'T LET U THE TITLE FOOL YOU Tlarlingsx I CHANGELING, from Page 1B pounding that can't be explained away as a faulty furnace. Doors open and shut by themselves. Windows break from the inside. Water suddenly begins running in all the sinks and tubs. Talk abut a house having character! Eventually, Scott discovers a small room hidden on the third floor that once was the bedroom of a crippled child. There's a cobweb-covered child's wheelchair in one corner. A schoolbook gives a date of 1909. A music box, when opened, plays a melody Scott just composed the day before. After a seance, one of the eeriest and most earnest on film, Scott accepts his spirit as that of a boy named Joseph, who was murdered in the house more than 60 years before, and sets out to solve the mystery. ENGLISH DIRECTOR Peter Medak, best known for the 1971 English satire "The Ruling Class," manages to keep "The Changeling" suspenseful from start to finish without ever resorting to what have become the standard shock tactics of horror films. Although some scenes ari1 brutal enough to earn Its R rating, there's no dismemberment, rotting tissues and the like. Just a constant, unrelenting insinuation that grief is just beyond the next door or up the next staircase. Scott carries most of the load himself he and his restless, unseen spirit but Van Devere is ably supportive. Melvyn Douglas is properly crotchety and overbearing as a patriarchal local senator who holds the key to Joseph's mystery. "The Changeling" cost $6 million to make, and the outlay shows in the lavish, authentic sets and some slick special effects. Medak trusted his sound and cameramen with a large share of the shock responsibility, and they came through for him. The movie has already . rewarded its Canadian investors with eight Genie awards, the Canadian Oscars. That seems a little extravagant for what stylish as it is is a genre film created more as fun than art. But "The Changeling" is certainly good spinal entertainment and your best opportunity in a long time to have your nerves checked. ti G i GENERAL AUDIENCES All AjU WmiHrt rMWUOIfllT PIC1IMS mSIKTS A SIIVI 1RIIIHMAIIKIMGS ROM PHDIKKI im TK1UM O'MEM ! DOT Mil P1KIII Sf SIIMN J I1M 7:05, 9:10 ,i restricted "i'k" iiiiiii! ! mill ii im i i suit II UNI ii lk m in n wmw miliar' R i ptmi oh.ukii cumvim toon .hi , w Mi w iwiamouv ix liiMM.nm'OHAnoN au wt,ii..m m hVi Ij 'HJlly(f PIC1 Ultl AAIII ffUWIIIlA CHECK DIRECTORY nUUl IIKaIImKi for program details mm 10:00,12:30, 2:45, 5:15, 7:30, 9:45 7:10, 9:30 c 7:10, 9:30 7:10, 9:30 mi pi iteve McQueen as yPapaf,RaIphThorson-the true story of a modern day lounty hunter, who always nets his man., one way or another. t, TH6 MOTION PICTURfc, " f- - - " ' ' ROYSCHEIDER BOBFOSSEmiFWJC JESSO lNGE m RENKING LEWND B4VIR CUFF GOfiWN & BEN VEREEN GIUSEPPf ROTUNNO AlANMHM II1 W)Si NHI iC, 10NVWAIION KA1PHBUHNS l-.im'MHi.WJ '" hi! 0 lull KINNI1HU114 WOIIG CHECK STARTS TODAY DIRECTORY FOR SHOWTIMES r"lI!Mlinffln3s:';. rKfH Hi .iNWw iHIIWhAi II V M :7ANGGIA111S "'rii'r' 1 1 MtTMCfW 1 Ui THEATRES: J A PARAMOUNT RELEASt HELD OVER at these leading )ING (Mm 5 'rnflHkm!.lm . 3 i.

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