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Duel in the Sun


scsu1975
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I just caught the opening of this wonderfully trashy all-star Western epic, and for the first time, heard the Prelude and Overture. During the Overture, there was a narrator (not Orson Welles at the beginning of the movie)... the voice was so familiar it drove me nuts ... but now I think it was Arnold Moss ... anyone know?

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I found the cutest little copy of that book once. Really old paperback. Picture from the movie. Poor condition. But worth the fifty cents I paid for it! I love stuff like that! It's not a bad book. A lot like the movie. Entertaining and scintillating, if not great.

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I think the movie was just too long. Should have been cut in half. Too many repetative sequences. How many times did they go to the swimming pond? How many times did Peck show up in her apartment? How many times did Barrymore give his old man Potter impersonation? I can't stand to hear an old griping Lionel Barrymore nag and gripe for 2-1/2 hours.

 

All the good people in the film died.

 

All those horsemen rode together and joined forces, but then there was no shootout. Boring.

 

The color of this print looked like it was colorized, i.e. computer enhanced. Sometimes Jinnifer Jones' teeth glowed in the dark and some of the colors glowed in the dark.

 

I feel the same way about "The Big Country". If I hear Burl Ives say, "the Big Muddy" one more time, I'm gonna scream.

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I usually watch it just for the musical score. Dimitri Tiomkin was one of my favorite composers. His opening theme is loud and grabs me. I also like the music when the cowboys are assembled and the troops are lining up across from them. Amazing how a Russian composer could "capture" western motifs in his works (High Noon, Rio Bravo, Red River, The Alamo, etc.)

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"Duel in the Sun" was one of the first to be honored by a record album, featuring selections from Dimitri Tiomkin's musical score. Rather than use excerpts from the soundtrack, RCA Victor recorded some of the music with the Boston Pops Orchestra conducted by Arthur Fiedler.

The music was split into approximately three-minute sections and released on 10-inch 78-rpm discs in 1946.

 

 

I found this bit of trivia ina book I have:

 

The film received the nickname "Lust in the Dust", which eventually became the name of a real movie. A scene in which Jones does a seductive dance for Gregory Peck was cut from the film before it was released. The film as shot could not make it past the Hays Code censors or religious review boards, and so was heavily edited and rearranged. This reportedly included the changing of rape scenes to love scenes and downplaying the original story's more overt sexuality!

 

So, naturally, as a film buff, I'm very curious if that original cut has survived somehow (and, miracle of miracles, might ever be released on DVD)!?!

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On the TCM presentation, the film opened with a musical Overture, then a musical Prelude during which an anonymous narrator spoke. Then the credits rolled, and we later heard Orson Welles. The purpose of this thread was to determine who the anonymous narrator was. It was not Welles.

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"Have a holly jolly western!"

 

I'm one of the few serious film fans who like THE BIG COUNTRY. I like the conflicts between the characters. Peck and Heston. Burl and the other land owner. Chuck Connors and everybody. I like the magnitude of the story. Always find it interesting. I even find Peck's quiet sense of honor charming. Maybe not as all fired impressive as it's supposed to be. But I enjoy this BIG movie.

 

RR

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Redriver:

 

I only found this movie about three years ago. I really like it too. It does seem like everyone has their counterpart. Connors was good as a tough sounding coward. I knew Ives had a mean streak but nothing like he shows in this one.

 

Peck's character is a very confident man. Unsure why no one else trusts him but it sure does lead to trouble. Peck is always waiting for the right moment to show he is a "man."

 

I'm not sure why it doesn't have a better reputation but, while maybe not a masterpiece, it's still a pretty entertaining movie.

 

Chris

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I haven't seen this movie in quite some time, but remember it as being OK entertainment, but nothing spectacular. Ives was a real meanie, and it was interesting to see Heston as a little bit of a heel. The opening theme became very famous.

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