maufrais

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Everything posted by maufrais

  1. maufrais

    Akira Kurosawa

    *IKIRU* is my favorite Kurosawa film next to *SEVEN SAMURAI*
  2. maufrais

    2001 vs 2010

    With all the controversy and endless conjectures generated from Kubrick's original, I think it was both a brave attempt and a misguided move for 2010 to have been made, and for no reason other than that any questions 2001 can provoke the audience to ask are not meant to be answered in our time. That remains to me an ingenious decision and marks Kubrick as a visionary in that he managed to create a story that compels the audience to create their unique thirst to want to know more. Prior to the time 2001 was made, there have not been many major Hollywood films that dare to take the approach of using lack-of-clarity as the intended pay-off. Kurosawa did it in 1950 with Rashomon as a break-through, but it is an entirely different topic than that of 2001--a story that, at the time it was made, the available science and technology could only provide conjectures to what belies in space travel, and the mysteries to the world outside our atmospheres... those myths still remain today. Remember the film was conceived and made before mankind had ever set foot on the moon. With all the research Kubrick invested in with consultants and Arthur C. Clarke, he knew it was better to have more questions unanswered, than to risk giving answers history and science could soon prove wrong... this is probably his greatest achievement as a story-teller with 2001: A Space Odyseey. If you watch the film again, try to count how many items, as well as technologies shown within are completely off based on what we actually have in application today. Aside from brand logo's, and maybe the details to how computer interfaces may differ from what we have today, there is nothing shown in the movie you can argue as "outdated" or are completely wrong. If that is not the work of a visionary, I don't know what is. While I don't know if Kubrick himself deserves all the credit, as he certainly had the help from the best talents available, to accept the challenge and be able to convince a major studio such as MGM to entrust a production of that scale, and have enough sense to understand that sometimes it is better to not try to provide an answer when you may not even know what the question is, that is genius at work. It is not difficult to come up with a story and make a film that is confusing, and there are plenty of those for us to forget. What Kubrick & co. came up with is confusion that is at the same time compelling and thought-provoking... not to mention his film in many ways influenced designs in the future. Citing Dr. Strangelove as another example, he created the concept of a "WAR ROOM" that had even Ronald Reagan asking to see when he became President of the United States, which to his disappointment, didn't really exist. 2010 is a good film, but it will always be derivative, always in the shadow of 2001, and always pale by comparison. Think of X-files the TV-series in its first 3 seasons, and how everything went downhill when it became a movie, the fault was not in the production value or lacking in writing talent, but the mere fact that the "payoff" that served to be the original and strongest hook was its ability to make us keep big bold question marks floating in our heads. Imagine LOST having a resolve... that would be the end to the magic. By making 2010, detractors of the narrative approach to 2001 will be satisfied, while fans of the original will object... and by virtue of its attempt to provide answers, it adds an expiration date to the story. Little did they know then that in just 6 years after the film was made, the COLD WAR would be a has-been. your thoughts?
  3. maufrais

    for a switch--annoying voices

    Betty Hutton's in-character voices were indeed annoying, and IMO so are the voice(s) of the following (i.e. just on voices, and not necessarily relating to their thespian talent): - Albert Brooks - Al Pacino from the mid-1980's forward - Joe Pesci - Madeleine Sherwood (CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF) - Leslie Caron - Ann Miller
  4. Here're some of mine: - Edmond O'Brien in WHITE HEAT - Chow Yun-Fat in CITY ON FIRE - Johnny Depp in DONNIE BRASCO - Tony Leung in INFERNAL AFFAIRS - Robert Redford in BRUBAKER and in a way, due to other circumstances... - Dustin Hoffman in LITTLE BIG MAN, and TOOTSIE - Tony Curtis & Jack Lemmon in SOME LIKE IT HOT
  5. another one... Al Pacino in SERPICO.
  6. maufrais

    Who would you cast to play AUNTIE MAME?

    I agree with all of you, but at the same time I tend to think that a re-release of Auntie Mame will less likely bring in audience who are not already fond of classic films. If a remake was created, it will give chance for critics to compare the two, and more than likely it will shine a new light on the original... that way, not just already-fans of Auntie Mame will get a chance to take notice.
  7. This is one classic that needs to be remade, but who would be able to deliver as memorable performance as the late great Rosaline Russell? Her timeing for comedy and rapid-fire lines were on-the-dime. Some have suggested the likes of Bette Midler or Streisand, but I wonder if there are others... Meryl Streep? Cher? your thoughts?
  8. maufrais

    RASHOMON

    thanks Aftermath, for bringing the topic back from a spinoff discussion that gives me chills just thinking of those scenes from the likes of Deliverance, and Pulp Fiction, etc... those are scenes that're definitely memorable, but yet not exactly can bring back anything I could define as "fond" memories.. now what if they used a Rashomon-type device to make a film about what happened to Fatty Arbuckle?
  9. maufrais

    Who would you cast to play AUNTIE MAME?

    and don't forget the levitating sofas... now if I only had a big enough living room and deep enough clearance under the floorboards. Auntie Mame needs to be remade! If for no other reason, just so we can slam it endlessly by pointing out how it doesn't live up to the original.
  10. maufrais

    Who would you cast to play AUNTIE MAME?

    jdbl, we keep running into each other... I think Osment could play young Patrick Dennis, but I don't know how audience will respond as he's better known for much more somber roles. Bonnie Hunt is an odd choice for Auntie Mame, but I just get this feeling she could handle the role (maybe I should turn down the helium),,,, on ITO, I would think that if the film was to be remade, it would not be done like the original, which was more a stage-production on celluloid. There're too many elements in the story that are relevant and not outdated even today, so it'd probably be more of an "inspired-by" remake. If you allow my imagination to digress further along this line of thinking, some of the characters in the story would end up being tweaked -- ITO, in this hypothetical film, would not need to be Asian as in the original. His character, on the other hand, would probably be a little less camp. B.D. Wong would do a great job with this, and so would a Stanley Tucci... picket signs and demonstrations will be seen outside the theatre when they premiere the film in New York with crowds screaming "blashphemy!"... Warner Bros will launch a campaign for Auntie Mame's DVD, along with a tribute showcase on TCM featuring the original Auntie Mame as the flagship to a marathon of films about "my mom away from mom"... the book will get a new print, and some chi chi coffee chain will add an Auntie Mame special to their breakfast menu -- Black Coffee with a side-car and a cold-towel. gosh, I have to turn down the helium....
  11. As un-PC as this film can be judged as today, I think Brando did an admirable job in spite of the fact the casting to this role remains controversial. Having watched this film again recently, which allowed me to get a stronger feel to "whom" the story was really trying to poke fun at, I get the feeling that the film could have only been made THEN with someone as sought-after as a Brando. That said, if you were the studio exec to this project, who would YOU have chosen to play Sakini? On the late great underrated Glenn Ford, this was definitely one of his most challenging roles, and he certainly proved his thespian-ship playing Fisby. Watching his performance in this film, I kept thinking that Glenn Ford could have played many of the roles that made James Stewart one of Hollywood's biggest legends to date. Your thoughts?
  12. > By the way, maufrais, how come this is in "Science > Fiction?" Yikes, is there a way to move this back to "general discussions"? on Glenn Ford, I agree completely with you that it was one of his best roles and he gave a great performance playing Fisby. I read on IMDB that Louis Calhern was cast originally as Purdy, but passed away during production. He would have been a more subdued Purdy, in my opinion. I keep thinking Forrest Tucker would have also done well with this role. Machiko Kyo evidently is still acting in Japan. She's in her 80's, but looks much younger in the pictures I've seen.
  13. maufrais

    Who would you cast to play AUNTIE MAME?

    Maybe her character combines the qualities of a Mildred Pierce and Vicki Lester, with touches of attitudes that remind of Mae West & Bette Davis? But that'd just be an uneducated conjecture on my part. I just like it because, and adding to all the good things everyone has posted already, it's a damn funny film... and probably one of the best stage-to-film translations I have ever seen. As JackBurley pointed out in an earlier post, most fans of AUNTIE FAME would not agree it is necessary or even possible to remake the film that can live up to the original. IMO, trying never hurts, and in most cases of remakes that fall below-par by comparison, it only helps to bring a new light to the original (as Pintorini suggests)so more people can enjoy what they may not even know existed otherwise. I was also thinking Haley Joel Osment for Patrick Dennis... but he is probably too much a teenager to fit the age of the character. What about Logan Lerman from tv's JACK & BOBBY? Unless you think he's too much like a teenage Damien Thorn? btw, why not Swoozie Kurtz or Bonnie Hunt? last but not least, Ito's character will probably not be the same if the film is remade. In spite of all positive attributes, Ito exhibits many outdated [caricature-like] characteristics that could make audiences who're not already an AUNTIE MAME fan, equate him as a StepinFetchit of sorts... if they were to remake the film, ITO would probably be portrayed similarly to Stanley Tucci's character Nigel in The devil wears Prada. your thoughts?
  14. maufrais

    Who would you cast to play AUNTIE MAME?

    Speaking of Nathan Lane, do you think he would make for a good Mr. Burnside? or is it not big enough a role for him... hmm, what about Gene Wilder? What about Lili Taylor as Gooch? come to think of it, Emma Thompson COULD very well make a decent Mame... as for Patrick Dennis, I would have suggested James Spader/Matthew Modine as the grown-up version, but that'd work only if the remake was shot 15 years ago.
  15. maufrais

    RASHOMON

    to me, the Hollywood version just didn't work, even if it was an original and RASHOMON was never made. The sensibilities about honor and shame just don't translate well in a Western mind-set, as opposed to the context & value-systems we would expect from a Japanese film like RASHOMON. Another Hollywood film that was inspired by RASHOMON would be COURAGE UNDER FIRE (meg ryan, denzel washington, lou diamond philips), and they chose the correct topic which actually works with the RASHOMON style of narrative approach. If they didn't reveal how Meg Ryan actually was killed, and left it to the audience to decide, it would have been a much better film and probably as close as they'll get to a decent RASHOMON-type remake. But even with the Hollywood ending, COURAGE UNDER FIRE still makes a better homage to RASHOMON than OUTRAGE. That said, James Wong Howe did a fantastic job with the cinematography. As to "subtitled films", I find most non-english films to be a better watch when I get to hear the original voice tracks. Even though I can't understand a word to what I hear, I get a better feel of the actors' performances. I can cite a few examples -- LA CAGE AUX FOLLES, and SPIRTED AWAY (just to name 2 off the top of my head) are fine examples of how the subtitled version is far superior to that with english-dubbed tracks.
  16. maufrais

    Who would you cast to play AUNTIE MAME?

    sorry Jack, I should have written "if you were to remake AUNTIE MAME, who would you cast?" how about Bonnie Hunt, or Annette Bening?
  17. maufrais

    2001 vs 2010

    without a doubt Hyams is different from Kubrick, but I don't know if the different atmos seen in the two films are so much just about different visions between the two. I think Kubrick had a lot more control over how he wanted things compared to Hyams when he directed 2010. Even though Kubrick used state-of-the-art equipment for 2001, I don't know how it compares with what was available in the 80's when Hyams made 2010 -- maybe the crispness to the picture, and the colors were more the standard for motion pictures in the 80's? Cold War sentiments are apparent and the backbone to the story, and justifiably so because that was used to bring relevance and tension to the film. When Kubrick made 2001, that was before NASA had set foot on the moon, so the myth about space travel was the compelling question & draw. That's why Kubrick spent so much time checking with engineers and scientists to make things look as real as possible -- so when the world finally sees astronauts in space, his film wouldn't look ridiculously off-track. For 2001, the tension and relevance was the mystery of space travel, which would be old news if Hyams took the same [well beaten] path. For 2010, on the other hand, this was made after the Space Race had ended. There were plenty of footage we've seen from NASA that it would have been old news if Hyams depicted space travel in the same light. In fact, I wonder if Hyams was partly inspired by Ridley Scott's ALIEN. Look at the visuals and atmos in that film (which was made a few years before 2010), as well as BLADERUNNER, and you can tell their influence in so many sci-fi/noir pictures for the rest of the 1980's, let alone 2010.
  18. maufrais

    Top 10 funniest movies

    > Did you ever see her in > The Trouble With Angels And Where Angels Go Trouble > Follows? What a change of character from Auntie Mame > and Gypsy! Roz is great. I have only seen her in The Citadel, Design for Scandal, No time for comedy, The Women, and Gypsy... none of those were able to show her talent and timing as spot-on as AUNTIE MAME. From what I've read, Roz was signed by MGM to fill in for Myrna Loy in case "the Queen of Hollywood" act up. While I think Loy is great and talented, I don't know if she had the same "on the dime" timing for comedy as Roz did. I shouldn't be comparing, and I guess Roz's earlier roles were often similar as those played by Loy, but looking at her later work (maybe it was her work on-stage that helped carve her a new niche), they seem to have completely different strengths on-screen.
  19. Peter O'Toole did a good job in MY FAVORITE YEAR, but while it was a fine performance, the role was an "inspired by" rather than a portrayal of Flynn. I'm tempted to say Colin Farrell, but probably more due to their similar lifestyle off-camera. Johnny Depp would do a good job, but they would have to do an unbelievable make-over to make it work. Cary Elwes? do you think he could carry the role?
  20. Errol Flynn would be up there on my list... directed by Curtis Hanson -- focus 50% on Flynn's wild living, and the rest on how Hollywood was connected to the underworld. Looking at wannabe films like BLACK DAHLIA and HOLLYWOODLAND (with good performances to a not-so-good story), I'm waiting for someone talented enough to top L.A. CONFIDENTIAL.
  21. maufrais

    Top 10 funniest movies

    definitely the Roz version. I didn't enjoy her as much in GYPSY, but this has got to be one of the best performances in her later years.
  22. maufrais

    Top 10 funniest movies

    I forgot to add AUNTIE MAME... I saw it for the first time recently and loved it. I've added it to my list of Holiday fave's.
  23. maufrais

    2001 vs 2010

    I agree in parts Metry Road. IMO, the space race in the 1960's was driven by politics, and when it was somewhat "won" by the US, along with the problems and accidents that came about, costs became an issue because there really wasn't anything beyond politics at the time to create the perception of necessary progress with the program. Space travel, as presented by the gov't, media and the scientific community, was believed by everyone to be a part of the future, but pollution, war, and natural disasters did not amount to make it a survival need for mankind just yet. If I may veer off to a slight digression, remember the industry that was/is involved in the space race also works on the "arms race". Money is more easily made, and with less risk of public scrutiny, when you secretly pitch destruction technologies to keep the world unstable enough so $$ keeps rolling in. If Kubrick & Clarke factored the political and economics landscape of the future [into the story], they hit near-jackpot in that space travel in the future was presented in the film(s) as mostly still just exploratory and experimental. There're space stations, excavations, and what I infer as mining operations factored into the stories, but no migration, space colonies were mentioned... let alone pantomiming androids. This was either not part of the consideration as they plotted the film and novels, or they were right to expect no Star Trek-type astro-fantastique to take place 30 years forward. 2010, on the other hand, factored the issues at hand--Cold War politics was part of the original space race, and they simply followed the lead of the existing landscape of the 80's without realizing it would end in just a few years. In fact, few of us would have expected the end of the Cold War simply for the reason of the need for "Grand Foes" in order for certain powerful industries and economies to survive and keep their reins... but again, I digress....
  24. maufrais

    Two obscure sci-fi films

    SILENT RUNNING is definitely available on DVD. I've seen it in stores, and I'm sure MU would have it.
  25. maufrais

    2001 vs 2010

    btw, has anyone read or heard of Arthur C. Clarke's later books 2061, and 3001? I haven't read them myself, but I hear there was a plan to make 3001 into a film.

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