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Passion for the 'Pack
J U SiS
Thursday, October 16, 1380
By JOHN DHESCHER
ATURDAY I will be one of the most
X hated people "in Chapel Hill. My
roommate won't talk to me, my
friend swill disown me and my neighbors
in the Kenan Stadium student section
won't want to sit next to me.
That's because when State and Carolina
stage their annual war Saturday, I'll be
rooting for the guys in red to win.
I'm a State football fan living in a
Carolina world. It's as unnatural as a fish
on land, but I can't help it. Before you
deny me drinking access at the Old Well
or sitting privileges beneath the Davie
Poplar, hear my case.
If you are from the area, you probably
grew up cheering for Don McCauley, Paul
Miller and Mike Voight. If. you didn't know
their names, at least you knew well
enough to root for the Heels. They were
your team because, well, this is the state
of North Carolina, and here The University
of North Carolina is as sacred as Mom, the ,
American Flag and apple pie.
I did not know well enough. I grew up
cheering for Willie Burden, Dave Buckey
and Stan Fritts. I was raised on tailgate
picnics on red-and-white checkered
tablecloths in the Carter Stadium parking
lot. I sang the State fight songs and
worshipped the State players. I sneaked
into the State student section and
screamed with them for State to blast
Carolina all the way back to Chapel Hill.
Well, you say, there are other Carolina
students who grew up rooting for other
schools. After more than two years of
living in Chapel Hill, enough of Carolina
should have rubbed off on me to convert
me to a die-hard, true-blue Carolina fan.
Forget those rednecks from Raleigh. .
I've tried, but I can't. I do follow
Carolina football. I went to Winston
Salem last weekend for the game. I've
traveled as far north as Charlottesville and
as far south as Jacksonville to root for.
Amos and the gang.
But when it comes to pulling for
Carolina over State. I just can't do it. The
roots are just too deep.
Indirectly, the ties go farther back than
the early teenage days. They are
My father is one of those people who
breathes sports. I was raised not only by a
father, but an avid sports fan. The sports
fan first took me to a State football game
on a chilly October night eight years ago, -which
started a habit that wasn't broken
until I left home. The father tried to teach
me lessons of life on persistence.
determination and character. He believed
what I believe now: These everyday
qualities do indeed show themselves on
.While he was educating his son on life,
his son was simultaneously getting an
equally astute lesson on life from
watching State football. State coach Lou
Holtz' teams were the perfect example for '
an impressionable youth. They were a
bunch of never-say-die overachievers who,
no matter what the score, did not quit
until the final gun sounded, Holtz' teams
typically got off to slow starts, butx:ame
racing back in the latter part of the game
to produce an exciting finish.
Often they pulled games out.
Sometimes they did not. What mattered to
. me was the amount of resiliency, fight and
effort they had. These same things being
stressed by father everyday were
happening on Saturdays at Carter
Stadium. The intertwining of these two
educations has made me a State football
fan for life.
Lou Holtz has been gone for years.
Wayne McLean isn't Ted Brown; I don't go
to many football games with my father
anymore. But a red helmet with a white
"S" .on it still means Lou Holtz and
comeback teams to me.
The roots from my youth are too deep
for me to change. Co get 'em, 'Pack, gv
lohn Drescheris a staff writer for The Daily
'J ii u J
By TOM MOO
M ARGOT Kidder, who plays the free-spirited
Jeanette in Paul Mazursky's Willie And Phil
throws down a script in disgust saying, "This
would be a good script if the dialogue was better and the
story interesting." That's a pretty fair assessment of Willie
And Phil, a nice idea that misses by light years.
Willie And Phil is an attempt to trace the 1970s from
viscious outpourings against Vietnam to such current
crazes and jacuzzi bathing but everything is presented
by Mazursky as so rosy and beautiful that the film
Mazursky, in Bob And Carol Ted And Alice, Blume, In
Love, Harry And Tonto, Next Stop Greenwich Village and
An Unmarried Woman, gently satirized the trials and
tribulations of American middle-class life. But in Willie
And Phil, his mocking wit is rare. Mazursky seems afraid
to make fun of his central characters because their
aspirations are so noble (you could sense this same fear to
ridicule a little bit in An Unmarried Woman.) Because the
three central characters Willie, Phil and jeanette are
rendered without any satire, they come off as inhuman.
Willie (Michael Ontkeen) meets Phil (Ray Sharkey) at a
showing of Francois Truffaut's Jules And Urn and they
become friends. Cut we never see why. Their interests
don't seem to be the same. Willie teaches high school
English and wants to be a concert pianist. Phi! is a fashion .
U . . .
photographer and wants to be an intellectual. Perhaps the
reason they become such great friends is that they're both
pretty dull fellows.
Perhaps this is the reason they both. go crazy over
Jeanette. She's every bit as dull as Willie and Phil.
Jeanette falls for both the guys. In a coin toss, Jeanette
moves in with Willie. They have a baby and later marry.
Willie longs to live the life of Rousseau's noble savage.
He and Jeanette move to the country to grow their own
crops, but Jeanette can't stand the farm life. They move
in with Phil, who's out in California directing
commercials. Willie is troubled and decides to go on a
long pilgrimage for enlightenment that takes him to such
exotic lands as India. Phil falls for Jeanette even more.
When Willie come home, he thinks his wife and best
friend should wed. But Jeanette. bored by the two how
did it take her so long to catch on leaves, -
Interspersed in this unexciting plot are a few moments
of juicy comedy. Mazursky brilliantly satirizes Willie and
Phil's middle-class parents, who can't understand their
sons' degenerate ways. But the nicest touch is Jeanette's
kid sister, a brilliant caricature of a slightly redneck
"My Cod. are all the Jewish boys in New York City this
cute?" she coos when she first meets Willie.
Unfortunately she disappears too soon from the screen to
salvage the movie.
Willie And Phil has' a nice look, though. The film was
shot by Sven Nykvist. most famous for his work with
Ingmar Bergman. Nykvist's cinematography is dazzling.
The images often are haunting. It's too bad that
Mazursky's writing usually fails to match Nykvist's
The acting in Willie And Phil isn't bad. Kidder, Ontkeen
and Sharkey give fine performances, they just aren't
given the material to wring out really memorable acting.
Mazursky originally thought of Woody Allen and Al
Pacino as the two leads. Even they couldn't have done
much more with the material.
Part of the problem is that Willie And Phil is a tribute to
lules And lim and other Truffaut films. Mazursky's film
has many parallels to lules And lim, but that isn't why it
fails. The director makes his characters like characters in
Truffaut's. films: romanticized and idealistic, with few
blemishes. In Truffaut's lesser efforts, even his
affectionate renderings come off as flat as they do in
Willie And Phil.
Tom Moore is arts editor for The Dally Tar Heel.
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