presents a Maine movie week
JIM FLANAGAN - COLUMNIST
This weekend, the Film Society is proud to present a group
of films all dealing with the state we call home (well, at least during
the school year). But for me, these films are particularly important.
If you are an attentive reader of Student Speak, you will remember that
your's truly hails from Waldoboro; a great little village just up Route
That's right friends, I'm a Maine Dawg and proud of it. Now,
not all of these films treat the Pine Tree State with great respect. But
that's OK - we can laugh at Maine every now and then. But all four films
are very enjoyable and should be seen by both residents and visitors alike.
The movies will be screened in Smith Auditorium, Sills Hall, and are free
and open to everyone.
Friday at 7:00 p.m.
The Iron Giant (1999)
Directed by: Brad Bird
Starring: Eli Marienthal, Jennifer Aniston, Harry Connick Jr.,
Van Diesel, Christopher McDonald, John Mahoney,
Cloris Leachman, M. Emmet Walsh
There are so many reasons why you should see this incredible
movie. First off, look at the director. Does the name sound familiar?
Well, if you're a Simpsons fan, it should. Bird directed the famous "Krusty
Gets Busted" episode, plus the one where Krusty and his dad are reunited.
Now, as to the quality of the film work, it is top notch. The animation
is superb and truly beautiful. All the voices used are great. You don't
even associate them with the actors; they become the characters. Now,
as for the story, it is very moving. A giant robot from outer space lands
in a coastal Maine fishing village and befriends a boy with no friends.
This is 1957, so the government believes that the robot is a Russian weapon
and istrying to find it and destroy it. The film has been described as
an anti-anti-communism film, showing the horrors of the Red Scare, and
I'd have to agree with that description. The themes and emotions this
film brings about are very adult; don't think that just because it is
animated it is only for kids. Everyone should see this remarkable film.
It is simply amazing.
Friday at 9:00 p.m.
Lake Placid (1999)
Directed by: Steve Miner
Starring: Bill Pullman, Bridget Fonda, Oliver Platt,
Brendan Gleeson, Betty White
OK, this is believable. People start dying in a small town
in The County (that's Aroostook County for you non-Maine Dawgs) when a
giant crocodile gets hungry and starts to eat them. Absurd, completely
absurd. That is why when this film bombed at the theaters as a horror
film, it was marketed as a comedy for its video release. And a comedy
it is. I only watched a few minutes of it to prepare for this article,
but already I was laughing. Hearing a New York paleontologist try to get
out of going to Maine because she's "allergic to timber," is almost too
good to believe. And to think Bill Pullman is a game warden is downright
hilarious. I think everyone should see this movie for a good laugh.
Saturday at 7:00 p.m.
The Cider House Rules (1999)
Directed by: Lasse Hallström
Starring: Tobey Maguire, Charlize Theron, Michael Caine,
This is the story of a boy raised in an orphanage in Maine
that also doubles as an abortion clinic. The doctor (Michael Caine's Oscar-winning
role) treats the boy as his own son and, if I remember correctly, encourages
him to go to his old school. A school we all know very well... I haven't
seen this film, so I don't have much else to say about it. John Irving
wrote it, so it is probably pretty good. And critics liked it, so that's
a plus. But, for no other reason, go to this movie because they talk about
Bowdoin in it. It will make you feel special, I promise.
Saturday at 9:00 p.m. (or a little bit after it, Cider House is just
over 2 hours in length)
The Man Without a Face (1993)
Directed by: Mel Gibson
Starring: Mel Gibson, Nick Stahl, Margaret Wilson,
Richard Masur, Gabby Hoffman
So this movie doesn't talk about Bowdoin, but that's OK,
because it was filmed here. Oh, how exciting! You can sit in the audience
and yell out, "Hey, that's Hubbard Hall!" (Of course, you'll sound dumb,
because everyone else will know its Hubbard; we all go here). It's kind
of funny to see Bowdoin as a military boarding school. In the film, a
young boy is desperate to get into this school and goes to a reclusive,
scarred former teacher to help him gain admittance. It's a fairly good
film on its own, but should be all the more enjoyable to us, the members
of the Bowdoin community. You might even catch a glimpse of one of your
professors; I know they are in the movie somewhere.