The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, January 21, 1983, Image 20

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The Verdict ( 'A Airplane II Yes, Airplane IIis as funny as Airplane!, even though the jokes are getting just a bit old. And yes, the cast that pulled Airplane! off the ground and established it as a major comedy effort are back again to roam the skies (well, its outer space this time). But no, there isn't enough material left uncovered to make an Airplane III take off. The plot of Airplane //centers around Lt. Ted Striker's (Robert Hays) attempts to save a passen ger-full space shuttle flight to the moon. Striker helped design the craft, and he knows it is un safe. The financial backers of the shuttle, however, decide the ship should fly anyway. We won't tell you if the shut tle makes it back safely, because that would spoil the ending and The ending? What is it? It's the time when the movie is over and the credits roll, but that's not important right now. — by John Wagner The Toy Were it not for the antics of Richard Pryor, The Toy could possibly have been the flop of the holiday season — if not of all time. Pryor's talents or a very lone ly night are the only two reasons you might want to see The Toy. The movie's slow development and shallow characterization do not do justice to a very experi enced and talented cast that, be sides Pryor, also includes Jackie Gleason. The Toy is too outlandish, too E redictable and too slapstick to eep an audience's attention for any length of time. The movie even goes so far as to have a pie-in-the-face scene could have come directly from the annals of a Laurel and Hardy film. Pryor should be applauded for the first-class job he did with what is clearly a second-class film. He carries the film with his wit and versatility as an actor. Because of the job Pryor does in The Toy, the mildly- entertaining movie might be worth seeing at a matinee per formance or in a year or two when it hits the pay-television circuit. — by John P. Lopez Sidney Lumet of Twelve Angry Men continues his bril liant directing in The Verdict. Paul Newman convincingly portrays a once-great, ambu lance-chasing lawyer who tries to regain his reputation in a mal practice suit. He represents a woman left comatose by negli gent doctors. Newman takes the case to court against the advice of fellow lawyers and against the wishes of the defendant. Dark The movie Dark Crystal is being touted as a future and great hit, unfortunately, the magic of Jim Henson's puppets is the only thing that makes the movie worth seeing. Although the movie will probably win an Oscar for spe cial effects, the plot is slow- moving and the characters are dull. Jen, a cross between an elf and a human, is the hero of the story. He is also the only charac ter that even faintly resembles a "real" person. Jen lives with 10 wise — uh, I guess you could call them moles — who adopted him after his parents were killed. When the wisest of these "moles" dies, he gives Jen a mission — to find the shard of the dark crystal and re place it before evil can take over. The plot is pretty predictable af ter that intro. You know, Jen runs from evil, evil catches Jen, Jen triumphs over evil. Predict able. What makes the movie semi worth seeing are the characters of the Skeezix and of a little dog- After years of playing the blue-eyed, rough he-man in movies like Cool Hand Luke, The Sting, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, New man finally gets to use his acting ability in a role which could win him an Academy Award — or at least a nomination for best actor. James Mason plays New man's antagonist — a devious, cunning defense attorney whose antics behind the court scene must be seen to be be lieved. Newman's character runs into another obstacle in the form of the presiding judge, who tries his best to ensure Newman of losing the suit. When not in court, Newman becomes involved with a dark haired stranger who is the driv ing force behind Newman's de sire to win the case. With the superior perform ances by Newman and Mason, along with Lumet's effective use of space and silence, this movie has proven to be one of the finest offerings of 1982. — by Frank L. Christlieb Crystal gish-catlike character named Fizzgig. The Skeezix are more mole like creatures, except instead of being very wise, they are very wrinkled and have terrible table manners. The poor little mice that they munch on for dessert will probably never recover. Fizzgig is a scene-stealing ball of fur with a 2-foot-wide mouth. He/she/it has more emotion and character than any of the other major muppet stars com bined. And what a character! That fuzz ball with the double row of teeth can stir an other wise totally bored and listless audience to laughter after an hour of silence. So, if you're into muppets and special effects, the Dark Crystal is worth seeing. In fact, its prob ably worth seeing anyway be cause the effects are really good. But don't go if your under 12, you'll lose interest. And don't go if you are easily bored, be cause its not the plot that's en tertaining, it's the magic of Jim Hensen. — by Diane Yount