Browse by Year

  • Issue of
  • May 10-16, 2006
  • Vol. 26, No. 30

News & Views

Arts & Culture

  • The Scene
  • The Promise

    Chinese director Chen Kaige (Farewell My Concubine) steps up to the plate to deliver the most expensive film in Chinese history, The Promise. Unfortunately, all the money in the world can’t make a tepid story and muddled script into a movie masterpiece. Bursting with exquisite photography, landscapes, costumes and battles, and laughably cheap special effects, the convoluted and lackluster script piles on as nonsensical fantasy elements until they overwhelm the picture's love story.
  • Tags: ,
  • The Scene
  • La Mujer di mi Hermano (My Brother’s Wife)

    This Spanish epic film is like the most lavish Univision soap opera ever staged; but it’s shot with the grave tone of serious art house drama, as if to bleed the fun right out of it. Though handsome and intensely acted, there’s absolutely nothing interesting happening under the sudsy surface.
  • Tags: ,
  • The Scene
  • A Page from the past

    Mary Harron’s sumptuous but ultimately misguided and superficial biopic of Bettie Page is almost an insult to the pinup’s legacy, as Harron is more interested in waxing philosophical over the repressed sexuality and moral censorship of the 1950s, a subject that’s been tackled better elsewhere. Thankfully, Gretchen Mol as Page gives it her all, and pulls off an engaging performance that desperately tries to flesh out the sweet little Southern girl’s true persona. But the film, overall, falls as flat as its spirited lead actress’ derriere. Bettie deserves better.
  • Tags: ,
  • The Scene
  • Mission: Impossible III

    In the past, Ethan Hunt was much like James Bond: he had no personal history or investment, and the stakes were purely professional. By focusing III on Hunt’s personal dilemma instead of just another goofball global threat, the third film in the series provides an emotional backbone to the team’s struggles; it gives the series some much-needed visceral juice. And, unlike the previous two installments, which featured all Tom, all the time, this picture recaptures the original television show’s sense of well-oiled teamwork, all while Lalo Schifrin’s way-cool version of the classic theme song chugs along.
  • Tags: ,
  • The Scene
  • The Sisters

    In translating The Sisters — a theatrical update of Chekhov’s Three Sisters — to the screen, neither writer Richard Alfieri nor director Arthur Allan Seidelman has the faintest clue about how to make a movie. In adapting his play, Alfieri seems to make few (if any) concessions for the screen and delivers an overly stagy script. The plot is stock repertory theater: As the hyper-intellectual Prior sisters frantically prepare for their youngest sister’s birthday party, nasty rivalries, a bitter marriage and unresolved childhood traumas produce endless histrionic confrontations. There’s Olga (Mary Stuart Masterson), the repressed and disapproving ice queen, Marcia (Maria Bello), the oversexed aging bitch, and Irene (Erika Christensen), the sweet naïf. It goes without saying: All three sisters have daddy issues. Though the biting irony and melodrama of Anton Chekhov can hold its own against the best of Shakespeare and Shaw, the Russian playwright has yet to be paid his cinematic due.
  • Tags: ,

Food & Drink

  • A cut above
  • Table and Bar
  • A cut above

    The roadhouse-nightclub on Rochester Road, just south of Fourteen Mile, opened in 1958. It has remained in that decade for several generations of locals who flock there to dine on beef washed down with highballs or red wine, and to dance the night away to the rhythms of the Mark James Band. Aside from the mildly pricey signature steaks and chops, other dinners, which include soup and salad, average around $16. And the over 100-bottle wine list, four-fifths of which are devoted to red wine, offers many solid selections well below $30. Obviously, the moderate cost of a night at the Clawson Steak House is one reason for its continuing popularity, especially for birthday and anniversary celebrations. Another is the overall dependability, if not flashiness, of its kitchen.
  • Tags: ,

Music

Best Things to Do In Detroit

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.