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January 3, 1997     The Message
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10 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana --On the Record-- The Best Hits )f 1996 By CHARLIE MARTIN CNS COLUMNIST What were your favorite songs in 1996? The year-end countdown shows have reminded us who did what in 1996. Yet, you don't have to be a music guru to know what you liked best about music in 1996. I was surprised that so many of my columns reviewed new artists' work. Newcomer Donna Lewis hit the top of the charts. Her "I Love You Always Forever" celebrates romantic infatuation. Other new voices belonged to teen-agers LeAnn Rimes and Amanda Marshall. Rimes turned a remake of"Blue" into instant chart success. Marshall gave us "Birmingham," a haunting ballad about a woman's courage in dealing with the truth about a relationship. In this category, I also liked Patti Roth- bergs message about pretending to be OK when one really feels lonely "Inside." Not technically a "new face" on the pop music scene, Alanis Morrissette made her greatest impact on the charts in 1996. I particularly liked her chart- topping 'You Learn." The song describes how most life situations can be learning situations that foster our growth, provided we pause to see the lessons offered. The year 1996 was especially popular for music i soundtracks. Leading the way was the multihit disc from "Waiting to Exhale," which included some of the best known black pop stars. I reviewed Brandy's "Sittin' Up in My Room," Mary J. Blige's "Not Gon' Cry" and Whitney Houston's and CeCe Winans' "Count on Me." These songs prompted reflection on taking care of oneself when romance fails. Disney gave us its newest animation "The Hunchback of Notre Dame," and from it All-4-One's hit "Someday." The song promised that "Someday, life will be fairer, need will be rarer, greed will not pay," and prayed, "Godspeed this bright millennium on its way." While it is easy to share that hope, what teens do today, indeed, what each of us does, iswhat counts. The message of Jesus asks for action. The world changes because of your choices, your caring. No matter how we classify music, we all have personal favorites. Here are my Top Five for 1996: 5. "Flood": The Christian group Jars of Clay crossed over to the pop charts with this hit. Beyond the fact that the song highlighted some of the talent in Christian rock, I appreciated its message about depending on and trusting in God. 4. "Because You Loved Me": Yes, a part of me 4* always remains a romantic! Yet the healthy love for others does them good. 3. "One Sweet Day": Mariah Carey Men reminded us that, always, love death. 2. "Insensitive": I loved i this song about being aware of, the other person wh( 1. "Reach": Even if you were around the summer Olympics, an important message. You and passions. You can believe can affirm the most important, your life. Did I leave anything out? have fun putting together Even more important than my I want to thank the many who wrote and suggestions during 1996. this column more helpful to I'm asking God to guide us all as we! new year of discovery, challenges and bless you. :. (Your comments are alwa address: Charlie Martin, RR 3, Box 182, Ind. 47635.) At the movies: E:urrent capsule revi THE CATHOLIC COMMUNICATION CAMPAIGN NEW YORK (CNS) -- The fol- lowing are capsule reviews of movies recently reviewed by the U.S. Catholic Conference (USCC) Office for Film and Broadcasting. Rationgs are also given for the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). "The Evening Star" (Para- mount) Spirited sequel to 1983's "Terms of Endearment" contin- ues the story of the strong-willed grandmother (Shirley MacLaine) and her problems with the three grandchildren she raised as she pursues romance with a decades-younger therapist (Bill Paxton), despite the opposition of her longtime maid (Marion Ross) and adoring neighbor (Donald Moffat). Writer-director Robert Harling paces the drama with plenty of heart and comic sassiness as the imperious matriarch comes to terms with her progeny's independence and her own mortality. Restrained bedroom scenes, minimal rough language and an instance of pro- fanity. The USCC classification is A-III -- adults. The MPAA rat- ing is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. "Evita" (Hollywood) - Lavish adaptation of the Andrew Lloyd Webber period musical about Eva Per0n (Madonna), who rose from ille- gitimacy and poverty to marry Argentinean President Juan' Peron (Jonathan Pryce) and attract the adulation of the masses before dying of cancer at age 33. Writer-director Alan Parker's polished but hardly riv- eting musical drama explores the conflicting images of Evita as both saint and sinner. Pre- marital promiscuity and violent riot scenes. The USCC classifi- cation is A-III -- adults, The MPAA rating is PG -- parental guidance suggested. "I'm Not Rappaport" (Gramer- cy) Offbeat comedy in which a crusty retiree (Walter Matthau) instead of moving in with his daughter (Amy Irving) involves another old-timer (Ossie Davis) in assorted neighborhood causes to fend offresigning themselves to rocking chairs. Adapted from his own stage play by writer- director Herb Gardner, the leisurely paced movie is a talky but acidly funny rejection of stereotypes about the elderly, with the result depending large- ly on Matthau's feisty perfor- mance and that of Davis as his gullible foil. Fleeting violence, brief recreational drug use and intermittent profanity. The USCC classification is A-III adults. The MPAA rating is PG- 13  parents are strongly cau- tioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. "Marvin's Room" (Miramax) Poignant drama in which a middle-aged woman (Diane Keaton), after devoting 20 years to caring for her invalid father (Hume Cronyn) and childlike aunt (Gwen Verdon), turns to her estranged sister (Meryl Streep) and volatile nephew (Leonardo DiCaprio) for help i HAUBSTADT @ ELECTR!C Licensed Bonded Insured Industrial, Cotnmercial and Residential P.O. Box 405 TONY NAZARIO Haubstadt tN 47639 i 812-768.5207 1-800-768-2787 ii when she needs a life-saving bone-marrow transplant. Direc- tor Jerry Zaks' testy tale of reluctant reconciliation is beau- tifully acted, shows delightful spurts of wacky humor and emerges as a moving portrait of a family's enduring bonds of love. Domestic arguments and an instance of rough language and profanity. The USCC classi- fication is A-II -- adults and adolescents. The MPAA rating is PG-13 -- parents are strong- ly cautioned that some materi- al may be inappropriate for chil- dren under 13. "Mother" (Paramount) Thin comedy about a twice- divorced man (Albert Brooks) who decides his problems with women stem from his strained relationship with his mother (Debbie Reynolds) and so moves back home with Morn in hopes of resolving their differences. Also written and directed by Brooks, the situation has some funny moments and Reynolds gives an endearing performance, but much of the humor is obvi- ous and the sentimental ending too contrived to be satisfying. Family tensions, benign view of extramarital sex and occasional profanity. The USCC classifica- tion is A-III  adults. The MPAA rating is PG-13 -- par- ents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappro- priate for children under 13. "My Fellow Americans" (Warner Bros.) While attempting to uncover the facts behind a burgeoning political scandal, two bickering former presidents (Jack Lem- i ii JONES BODY SHOP Front end alignment Complete body rebuilding Radiator Service Estimates Given Call 254-5358 207 E. South -- Washington, IN mon and James Garner) find themselves pursued by govern- ment hit men. Director Peter Segal's inane escapist comedy is surprisingly dark and vulgar in spots but some may enjoy the two veteran actors one-upping each 0ther throughout the pre- posterous narrative. Some vio- lence and profanity, fleeting bed- room scenes, frequent sexual innuendo and an instance of rough language. The USCC clas- sification is A-III -- adults. The MPAA rating is PG-13 -- par- ents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappro- priate for children under 13. "The Portrait of a Lady" (Gramercy) Brooding version of the Henry James novel about a young but spirited American (Nicole Kid- man) in 1872 England who, after inheriting a fortune, for- sakes suitors to set out on a journey of self-discovery until manipulated into marrying the malevolent brother (John Malkovich) of an opportunistic friend (Barbara Hershey). Direc- tor Jane Campion provides a credible re-creation of the Victo- rian world as the uneasy setting for James' tortured melodrama of an American innocent who grows wiser after experiencing a worldly corruption beyond her ken. Domestic violence, sugges- tions of incest, a flash of nudity and multiple romantic compli- cations. The USCC classification is A-III -- adults. The MPAA rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some Funeral Homes Four Convenient Locations material maY for chi "Scream" pair of craze! set off a high schooF grows to in terror an( Wes taken to thoroughly sive violence, scene, much USCC claSS morally rating is "The Wllo] (Sony Fact-base Texas weger) writer reclusive fantasy ta les and their mu into an the man'S mother. evokes the strong leads, tinguish l and leaving by what poignant suicide, corn profanity. tion is MPAA guidance 800 s.l"