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Favorite Talkfest


pandorainmay
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True cinephiles most often poo-poo movies that have their characters engage in long stretches of speech. Me, I like the yakking when it has some thought behind it and is also entertaining and occasionally enlightening. Favorite classic talkfests would include Counsellor-at-Law, A Man For All Seasons, Inherit the Wind, All About Eve, Rope and Twelve Angry Men, among others. I even have a couple of recent guilty pleasures among the all-talking movies: Before Sunrise (1995) and Mindwalk (1990). Where do you stand on the burning issue of verbose movies?

;)

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I LOVE a good "talkfest!" A couple of my faves include "Suddenly, Last Summer" and "Long Day's Journey Into Night." I also like the movies from Kevin Smith and Quentin Tarrantino..."Pulp Fiction" had many enthralling conversations.

Also loved "My Dinner With Andre."

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Personally, I can't get enough of these "talkfests"! Good dialogue can keep me spellbound. Some I would add to your list:

People Will Talk

A Letter To Three Wives (Joseph L. Mankiewicz excelled at these)

The Man Who Came to Dinner

The Philadelphia Story

Heaven Can Wait (Lubitsch, of course)

Metropolitan & Barcelona (both by director Whit Stillman)

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Yup, nobody wrote a talkier talkfest than Eugene O'Neil. Honorable mention to Tennessee Williams whose characters (female esp.) tended to spin protective webs of extraneous words around themselves as if to **** silken barriers against life's slings and arrows ... from Blanche to Maggie to Cathy to Amanda ... talk talk talk talk.

 

Famous talkfest not based on a play: Topper

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Well, I don't know if it qualifies as a 'talkfest' because there were not any long speeches by one character or anything. But I have always been overwhelmed by all the dialogue in "Stage Door".

 

Those scenes in the boarding house living room? Yak, yak, yak, yak. Jabber, jabber, jabber.

 

It's an exhausting movie.

 

Maybe it's a signature of Katharine Hepburn films...because I feel the same way about "Bringing Up Baby".

 

Too many words.

 

And of course, "A Long Day's Journey Into Night" is one HUGE talkfest...and another Hepburn film.

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There isn't much else but talk in Hitchcock's "Rope," which he tried to make more interesting by filming in very long takes. With a star less skillful than James Stewart, it would have been much worse.

 

I think the talkiest, most profoundly dull movie I've ever seen is "Wilson." (as in Woodrow, not Tim Allen's TV neighbor).

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Jdb1,

I found Wilson to be very heavy sledding in part due to the charisma-deprived Alexander Knox and a really leaden screenplay. Rope sort of grew on me like a talkfest, (and a fungus) tends to and another very "talky" Hitchcock movie seems to me to be Strangers on a Train. Bruno was one glib little sociopath.

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What a great idea for a thread! I love movies like this, especially movies based on plays, which I think most talkfests are, and especially Tennessee Williams plays.

 

The king, or granddaddy of them all has to be Long Days Journey Into Night, which at times seems to go past the night into the next night :-)

 

Cat On A Hot Tin Roof is a good example. It's mainly a series of long conversations between Paul Newman and Liz Taylor .......... and Paul Newman and Big Daddy.

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Moira and Judith: Agreed, Wilson was a complete snoozefest. Alexander Knox didn't act his lines so much as recite them, and to call the screenplay leaden is generous. I wish Charles Coburn had had bigger part. That might have improved it.

 

Then again, knowing virtually nothing about WWI, it was a little bit interesting to get some movie context. Bought a book on "The Great War" and it is on my list ... etc. etc.

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> Moira and Judith: Agreed, Wilson was a

> complete snoozefest. Alexander Knox didn't act his

> lines so much as recite them, and to call the

> screenplay leaden is generous. I wish Charles Coburn

> had had bigger part. That might have improved it.

>

> Then again, knowing virtually nothing about WWI, it

> was a little bit interesting to get some movie

> context. Bought a book on "The Great War" and it is

> on my list ... etc. etc.

 

You've got it, pintorini -- Knox was, I think, trying to be dignified and presidential, but they could have filmed a portrait of Wilson with animated lips to much better effect. Think of "1776," which without the music would be one long history lesson. The music helps, of course, but it's the actors who make the old familiar story come alive.

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