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kingrat

Going My Way--NOT

96 posts in this topic

Maybe someday people in the far distant future will look at today's current load of reality shows as absurd and ridiculous.

 

Someday?

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Now that I disagree with I love that song. Although I actually somewhat prefer Sinatra's version to Crosby's.

 

 

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Wow, I can't believe how many people have responded. Thanks, everyone. It's interesting to compare Going My Way with Meet Me in St. Louis. Both are episodic; both have sentiment, comedy, and music in varying proportions. The original audience responded more to Going My Way. The audience today generally prefers Meet Me in St. Louis. Going My Way isn't very realistic in some of its subplots--the only part of the film that feels in any way real concerns the two priests and the housekeeper--yet doesn't offer the satisfactions of stylization. Meet Me in St. Louis is both more grounded in reality and more successfully stylized.

 

Redriver makes some excellent points about how Going My Way telegraphs its punches. That is indeed part of the problem, and it's something that good direction can fix.

 

Like Fedya, I find it hard to watch Going My Way without at least a passing thought of the scandals that have beset the Catholic Church. Clearly, Going My Way is how the church wanted to see itself at the time, regardless of how this corresponded to reality. It's not a stretch to say that characters like Father Fitzgibbon would have covered up any amount of unpleasantness.

 

By the way, we watched Cimarron (1930s version) last night and rather enjoyed it. For all its faults, like the silly scene where the bandits hear the name "Yancey Cravat" and decide not to rob him, it's a much better film than Going My Way.

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>soniquemd21921 . . .

 

Without getting into a political discussion or debate on this matter, it concerns a perspective from the vantage point of Cecil B. DeMille. The famous producer/director had gotten himself into some trouble, when he created a bit of a fuss over what he believed might be communist activities in Hollywood. DeMille was caught up in the whole ?cold war? climate that had griped Hollywood as much as the rest of the world. This was especially the case from within the director?s guild, where DeMille had some high influence. A controversy then erupted, when DeMille questioned the validity of the guild?s council and its presidency. A certain amount of unfavorable publicity resulted from DeMille?s actions. The issue prompted Paramount Pictures to ask DeMille to take a leave of absence in the wake of all that had happened.

 

When DeMille returned to the studio, he then decided on the idea of the circus epic. It was now his contention to promote something of an international atmosphere, but shrouded within American patriotic ideals; thus in a technical way of thinking, the circus world is a microcosm of different cultures. While DeMille was hated by many, he was still a highly respected and important figure to the motion picture business. The film community or at least a majority of it, came to believe DeMille made amends on the benevolence that transpired from his film and so he was bestowed the Academy Award. There was however an impression, filled with lots of sentiment that ?The Greatest Show on Earth? would actually be his ?swan song? or final film. There was a feeling amid Hollywood that DeMille not leave the business from a distorted point of view and therefore he finally be given the highest accolade.

 

There has always been questionable reactions towards DeMille?s circus epic having won the Academy Award; perhaps more so than other films from previous and later years. What is so strange about that year is that numerous other great films (certainly better than DeMille?s) didn?t receive a nomination. It?s probable that the film community took a turn towards both respect and sympathy to one of Hollywood?s towering beloved founding fathers. Of course, DeMille wouldn?t fade away so easily and in three years time, he returned to motion pictures with his biblical epic, ?The Ten Commandments.? It?s this film that many film historians and fans believed was more worthy a win.

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*Rocky* won best picture because the Neanderthal voters love movies about boxing. They still do. Apologies for the pejorative.

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I like *GOING MY WAY* well enough, but it probably wasn't the best movie of 1944. That honor should have gone to *LAURA* or *THE MIRACLE OF MORGAN'S CREEK*.

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Actually, yes, but I know that puts me in the minority. For whatever reason, I don't buy Fred Macmurray as a noir hero. I keep expecting him to snub Barbara Stanwyck so that he can invent Flubber or adopt a bunch of kids.

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Come to think of it, the disappearance of William Frawley's character "Bub" O'Casey DOES seem suspicious.

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We won't even mention older brother Chuck Cunningham on "Happy Days." He must have done something horrendous, to the point where he was even left out of family photos.

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> {quote:title=finance wrote:}{quote}

> So you think LAURA was a better noir than DOUBLE INDEMNITY?

 

I throw in me two cents here and say that I personally think Double Indemnity is a good deal better than Laura BUT I add that Laura will always have a place in my heart in spite of its numerous flaws:

 

(DON'T WORRY, NO SPOILERS!)

 

1.Clifton Webb plays it too gay, I like him,and I'm thrilled this gave him a (deserved) comeback, but he plays it too gay and it makes the whole thing a little "huh?"

2. The moment where the Detective decides to have a cocktail party for about 30 people in Laura's apartment not long at all after the murder is, to say the least, weird. "Someone order some ice and let's throw some Bon Ami on the blood stain and GO NUTS!"

3. The climax could be more exciting.

4. I think it bears some marks of having had two directors and numerous re-shoots, or at least I say I am intrigued, by what the deleted scenes containing the art dealer/painter and others contain.

 

That said, I read Vera Caspary's novel a year or so before the movie Laura was shown for the first time on network TV in ages, on old, AMC B.C.(circa 1993) I really liked the book, which is different in numerous subtle ways, the most prominent being the fact that the Waldo Lydecker character played by Clifton Webb in the movie is written as being morbidly obese (I don't know if Laird Craeger died before Laura was made, but he would have been perfect as Waldo) and the final climax is a lot more action-filled and taut than what is in the film (at least as I recall it.) It is out of print, but can still be found in the odd library, used book store or even online.

 

I recommend it, 'specially for those of ye who have not seen the movie,

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JonnyGeetar wrote of *Laura*:

 

"1.Clifton Webb plays it too gay, I like him,and I'm thrilled this gave him a (deserved) comeback, but he plays it too gay and it makes the whole thing a little "huh?"

 

Well, he played it gay because I'm pretty sure he was gay (not Waldo, Clifton). Have you seen him in Dark Corner ? He's pretty much the same, maybe a little less...extreme. There's been talk here before about Laird Cregar, and maybe he does fit the way the character was in the book better, but I love Webb's Waldo Lydecker, I think he's perfect as the asexual obsessed admirer of Laura. And all those incongruities you point out, valid as they may be, I just think add to the quirkiness of this film. In fact, I consider *Laura* to be quite a funny movie, as well as a legitimate film noir. Check out any of the Vincent Price/Judith Anderson scenes...they're hilarious.

 

 

ps I love *Laura*, but I also love *Double Indemnity*. They're so different, it's hard to decide which is better.

 

Edited by: misswonderly on Feb 17, 2011 11:32 AM

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Both movies have snappy dialogue, but *LAURA'S* is consistently funnier. I love Waldo's defense of his own compassion level: "I would be sincerely sorry to see my neighbor's children devoured by wolves." His taunts of Vincent Price's character are also priceless. I don't know if his character is gay or not, but it doesn't matter because his character is probably driven by narcissism rather than love. I think he's more concerned with defeating Carpenter and McPherson than with actually having a relationship with Laura.

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> {quote:title=phroso wrote:}{quote}

> Both movies have snappy dialogue, but *LAURA'S* is consistently funnier. I love Waldo's defense of his own compassion level: "I would be sincerely sorry to see my neighbor's children devoured by wolves." His taunts of Vincent Price's character are also priceless. I don't know if his character is gay or not, but it doesn't matter because his character is probably driven by narcissism rather than love. I think he's more concerned with defeating Carpenter and McPherson than with actually having a relationship with Laura.

 

 

It is/was common knowledge that Waldo Lydecker was based on the personality of Alexander Woollcott, whose sexuality was- to the least - ambiguous.....and possibly non existant. So casting Webb, who had essentially blacklisted due to his sexual preferences for 20 years, as Lydecker was almost type casting. Almost 70 years after his passing, Woollcott would still make a great subject for a biopic of some kind.

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Although I generally really enjoy Laura; I actually think it somewhat falls apart in the second half when Laura returns. The idea of Laura is more captivating than Laura herself was.

 

Double Indemnity is definitely the stronger Noir in my opinion with great performances by Barbara, Edward and Fred. Barbara's Phyllis also happens to be my favorite femme fatale.

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Kinokima, I think we're actually supposed to be disappointed when we meet Laura. All three of the principal male characters seem to have self-serving or shallow reasons for being attracted to her. By the time she shows up, the goddess who we've been led to expect turns out to be a pouty yuppie in need of a life coach and better taste in men. Laura is merely a reflection of the needs of three unfulfilled guys, so it shouldn't be that surprising when she turns out to be not worth all the fuss.

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> {quote:title=phroso wrote:}{quote}

> Kinokima, I think we're actually supposed to be disappointed when we meet Laura.... By the time she shows up, the goddess who we've been led to expect turns out to be a pouty yuppie in need of a life coach and better taste in men.

 

phroso, that's hilarious ! And true.

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