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Movie Rambles


MissGoddess
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oh my goodness! jackie i couldnt have said it better myself! that was very well written and i thoroughly agree with you on *Wanted*. all my fellow co-workers at the Hyatt want to really go see that movie and i have gotten a full review on it from some of them. thwe sotry plot in itself is empty and lacks imagination just by the sound of it. from what they told me, it sounds like they went to see it just for the violence and "sexyness" of angelina jolie.

 

this movie is a great example of how the wonderful movie heroes have gone down in this modern age. heroes like gary cooper, the Duke, dana andrews, robert ryan, jimmy stewart, and even 70s actors and many more are one of so many other reasons to actually sit and watch a great older movie other than settle for a poorly made movie out today with hardly as much imagination thought into it.

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Goddess: Thanks for posting great article. I took a film class "The Western Hero" had a couple of fine Ford films in it. He was a remarkable director, more than 100 films. My favorites are The Man who Shot Liberty Valance, Rio Grande, The Searchers and The Quiet Man.

 

Hi Annie Laurie! That class sounds like the only kind of class I would actually enjoy (I'm not into school books or teacher's dirty looks ;) ). My three favorite directors are Ford, Lubitsch and Hitchcock, but if pressed, Pappy's on top.

 

We could really use some heroes in cinema today. I saw Hospital for the second time, 70s movie with gritty issues, has a flawed hero. The riveting performance by George C. Scott is just exceptional when compared with the big "stars" of today. And the screenplay by Paddy C. is first rate. If I had to put it in as few words as possible, is a depth of feeling lacking today, a raw passion. I see new "blockbusters" some are compelling, but they fail to capture my imagination and attention the way the classics and their heroes do.

 

I saw this movie on TV as a child and never forgot his performance. I didn't like it at the time, obviously, it was too adult and over my head. I think I would appreciate it much more today. Scott had authority as an actor that is bracing and makes you take notice of him. That's something lacking in most actors today. They are very "soft" in their presence for the most part, by that I mean there is not much sharp delineation of character, personality or convictions. Their outlines are "blurry" to me.

 

Actors like Gregory Peck, John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, George C. Scott, Errol Flynn, John Barrymore, Sr., Richard Burton, Humphrey Bogart, Jimmy Stewart, Henry Fonda, Frank Sinatra, Burt Lancaster, Peter O'Toole, Robert Taylor, Dana Andrews, Spencer Tracey and so many more.

 

And...ahem! Gary Cooper. :D

 

I laughed when I read the Depp comment. My teenager thinks he is hot, I don't share her enthusiasm...maybe it is the heavy black eye liner when he is pirate mode, bit much

 

He totally creeps me out, nor do I care for the characters he generally plays.

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Hi Jackie!

 

I love TCM message boards. Where else can you find caning, fussbudgets, and the word "Egad" tossed off in a witty and engaging manner?

 

Thank goodness for Lafitte---he brings a touch of class to the proceedings. :)

 

Well, I tried posting something yesterday amid all the turmoil and it didn't take. Now most of my draft has disappeared and it is probably a good thing because everyone has moved on to a new topic now, anyway. My list of fussbudgets will have to wait.

 

I hope you'll share it with us---I'm still working on mine, believe it or not. I hope to post it later today.

 

That was a great article, MissG. I am very pleased with James Bowman, and liked his take on the evolution of the hero. His analyses of TMWSLV, Stagecoach and Film Noir were right on, I think. I especially liked the line about Liberty and Tom being on the same side- their heroic battle having no place in a "civilized" community. I am not sure why I was thinking about it, I know it is tied in somehow, but Stalag 17 is another precursor to the antihero movies.

 

I've also always thought of Bogart's characters in HIgh Sierra, To Have and Have Not and Casablanca as anit-heroes. Also Robert Mitchum and John Garfield's. They tie in with the noir type of leading man, I guess.

 

As for the script writing today, it's certainly "less than". Real authors used to write scripts in the 30s and 40s. I think audiences today would go to see an "old fashioned" heroic story on the screen if it was a good movie, and that starts with the script.

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audiences today would go to see an "old fashioned" heroic story on the screen if it was a good movie

 

I quite agree, MissG. The few movies with heroes over the last -say- 30 years were not well done. I am thinking of the attempts Tom Selleck made at a movie career in particular, because for some reason that's all I can come up with right now. But these movies were at best rehashes of 30's and 40's classics, written and produced to make a quick buck.

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I quite agree, MissG. The few movies with heroes over the last -say- 30 years were

not well done. I am thinking of the attempts Tom Selleck made at a movie career in

particular, because for some reason that's all I can come up with right now. But these

movies were at best rehashes of 30's and 40's classics, written and produced to make

a quick buck

 

I was thinking of Tom's movies, too, and those rather pitifully boring movies they air

on the Hallmark Channel. They have the right idea and intentions, but the direction

and scripts are just not interesting at all. And many times they cop out with the

characterizations, diluting them or not defining them well enough. There is one in

particular that is a remake of Angel and the Bad Man. Now, Angel and The

Bad Man was not a super perfect movie, it was a good, entertaining western with

enjoyable characters. What did they make it into? A boring, preachy, self-pitying

narrative about religious oppression and the childhood traumas of an outlaw. As

Lafitte might say, Egad!!!!!

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heehee! jackie you just tickled me! i love those screencaps! thank you so much for doing that...i needed a giggle today.

 

you forgot one though. you know spring byington's character in Theodora Goes Wild? when theodora brings a baby to her hometown and spring sees it, she faints. i love that scene. i cant find a pic of it, forgive me? ;)

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i know, thats what i tried...on google and i couldnt find any either. that is rather disappointing. i had at least hoped to see some gorgeous pics of her when she was younger too, but they didnt give me too much of a selection. dont you just love her fiesty character in that movie? she's so funny!...and grumpy. she made me wanna ask her, "what side of the bed did you wake up this morning?"

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Miss Goddess--great piece on "Hollywood's Hero Deficit--I have felt this way for a long time which is why I rarely go to the theater anymore I think there is something maybe a little "hokey" for most people about the old standard "good guys wear white hats" that has maybe swung the pendulum SO far the other way that now you can't even really be sure that someone really IS a good guy even after a movie is over. Most of the characters in todays films are clueless as to how or what they should do to resolve whatever crisis they face because they have no sense of right or wrong in their own personal lives. They are making up their own rules as they go along. (Just my opinion--but that is a pretty good reflection on our society as well.)

 

I liked the part of your post where he talked about Liberty Valance:

 

Where there is no hope of a better world, there can be little to distinguish heroes from villains

 

Eventually, the idea of a larger civic responsibility begins to sink in?and, with it, a sense that it has become incumbent on him to do what no one else can do.

 

I am not sure that I agree completely with his entire premise that Liberty and Doniphon end up on the same side...I still don't look at what Tom did as breaking the law--if he had not fired, Rance would have indeed been killed--But I do see where his decision to let the weaker man get all the glory while he (Tom) quietly fades from the forefront completely changed his entire life--and future--and it wasnt' just because of "the girl" I think it was his way of conceding that the ideals Stoddard was attempting to bring to the community were needed and ready to be embraced by the people.

 

In a world that seems to celebrate the "gray" in our society--where our ethics are situational and everyone should just do whatever they think is best for themselves, I think today's younger film viewers are especially fortunate to have access to older films--like here at TCM so they can discover for themselves an entirely different perspective in storytelling that is almost completly lost in our society nowdays...there really is more to the term "black and white" than just the type of film in the camera.

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Thank you---but check out the poor grammar! ideals was ??? My high school English teacher (if she is still around) would flip-out if she read that one!!--She was a tough old gal...but she really knew her stuff!) :-)

 

Message was edited by: rohanaka

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Wow, Ro, very nicely expressed! I especially liked this description:

In a world that seems to celebrate the "gray" in our society--where our ethics are situational

 

If you're not a writer you should be. I couldn't agree more.

 

Regarding the point about Liberty and Doniphon---I think I can see where one might

consider them two sides of the same coin. Liberty was totally amoral and Tom, the

flip side, possessed principals---yet both fought their own battles and both could kill.

Isn't that a hero, though, someone who can but won't do what is bad and who will

do what is right, despite what it costs him personally?

 

manwhoshotlibertyvalance35.jpg

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I can see where one might consider them two sides of the same coin.

 

Excellent point---when you look at it from the "coin" perspective it makes perfect sense.

 

Isn't that a hero, though, someone who can but won't do what is bad and who will do what is right, despite what it costs him personally?

 

Hmm...I wonder if that is what Jimmy Stewart's character is thinking in the picture you posted... :-)

 

(It had to be a love/hate thing for him--appreciating the life he ended up with, but knowing that despite all his hard work and principles, he only had Tom Doniphan to thank for it in the end)

 

(Ps--only a writer in my dreams...nothing quite that glamorous in real life)

 

Message was edited by: rohanaka

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Howdy, Ro!

 

(It had to be a love/hate thing for him--appreciating the life he ended up with, but knowing that despite all his hard work and principles, he only had Tom Doniphan to thank for it in the end)

 

I don't know if you saw it in the Western forum, but a few months ago we had a really

long, fun discussion of TMWSLV and there was a great deal said about both Tom

and Ranse. I have always felt ambivalent about Stoddard because he knew what he

was doing by taking the credit and still he didn't speak up but rode to glory on the back

of another man. I'm putting it harshly but it's a movie that provokes strong feelings from

me, which is why it's one of my favorite, if not my very favorite, western. The older,

present day Ranse appears to have seen the past come to roost and yet there is little

he can do to make up for it at this late date---except maybe try to give Hallie some

happiness by moving their home back to Shinbone.

 

I essentially see Doniphon as a tragic character.

 

LibertyTomStoddard.jpg

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*Bonjour, mon pirate pr?f?r?!*

 

Bonjour, ma Deese extraordinaire, la meilleure du monde!

 

*Thank goodness for Lafitte---he brings a touch of class to the proceedings.*

 

O Mon Dieu, tu me fait rougir! Not only are you kind but you have a flair for hyperbole. ;)

 

*I can't stand Depp's looks...*

 

I thought all the girls (and Goddesses) went for him! Anyway, good?now if I can just get rid of Errol. ;)

 

*And I don't mind being on the spot so long as I don't have to swab any decks. I don't do decks or windows.*

 

No decks and windows for you, Ma Chere Deese. You will stand on the quarter deck dressed all in white where you we can admire you. Maybe you?ll wave to us once in awhile while we toil on deck. Talk about class, we'll be the envy of the high seas!

 

BTW, MissG, I copied that article you posted to Word and will read later tonight. It?s too hard to read off the cuff because my browser has me scrolling to the right to get to the end of the sentence.

 

_*JackFavel, Bonjour!*_

 

*Well, I tried posting something yesterday amid all the turmoil and it didn't take. Now most of my draft has disappeared and it is probably a good thing because everyone has moved on to a new topic now, anyway. My list of fussbudgets will have to wait.*

 

Oh no! I hope you can retrieve list soon, I await breathlessly. I want my fussbudgets!!!

 

BTW, I haven?t been here as long as some others but I?m quite sure that there is no such as ?moved on? on this forum. Threads are like movies in that they can be revived. Some posters actually disappear for days at a time then come back and pick up just where they left off. And besides fussbudget lists are just too danged important ?to wait.? ;)

 

And thank you for the fussbudget screen caps. I can?t even identify some of them :( ?Course we swashies are so busy a-plunderin? all the time who?s got time to watch movies. Oh well, my pirate ship doesn't have cable anyway.

 

 

_*Here is Mademoiselee Butterscotch, la mignonne, who writes:*_

 

*bonjour mon pirate fabuleux!!!*

 

Bonjour, mon amie fabuleuse!!!

 

*i need to see this though, i have screen caps from a friend and she looks gorgeous in it...dont you think so laffite?*

 

Mais oui, not only gorgeous, but classy gorgeous too. I like those screen caps you posted. Interesting that there is only one that is an actual scene from the movie. The others are apparently between-take stills but they are nice. I hope you get to see it. Does you have Netflix?

 

*it seems you grow more towrds the old english movies set in victorian times or at least in a historical sense.*

 

I would say so but I like other stuff too. I like colonial settings because great stories can come out of that, i.e., A Passage To India, The Man Who Would be King, Out of Africa, The Flame Trees of Thicka (PBS MiniSeries), Chocolat (1987, Clair Denis..._not to be confused_ with later film of same title starring Juliette Binoche), and one of my favorites, The Raj Quartet (PBS MiniSeries) and a bunch others.

 

*i talked to april on the phone about it and she was honest about it, but she doesnt remember a whole lot about it. maybe we will both get to see it and share views on it together.*

 

Well, I hope you both can see it...but if you don't like it. I may have to ship out in a hurry ;)

 

Oh, and BTW, when you see this, you will behold _*THE BIGGEST FUSSBUDGET IN THE HISTORY OF WORLD*_ (much less in movies.) Now you must see it. I mean, this fussbudget makes other fussbudgets look like sweetie pies.

 

ps...it's not Helen.

 

*remember, you are a fancy free swashbuckler now!*

 

Thanks, I'll keep that in mind the next time somebody comes at me with a machete. ;)

 

When I was kid there was pirate in a Peter Pan comic book who was singing:

 

Oh the pirates life

Is a wonderful life

Ho, ho, ho,

 

...but I don't think that pirate watches the History Channel much. Boy, there are some programs there about Pirates that make me want to give up the highs seas altogether. I mean I could be having fun somewhere else being tortured.

 

///

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Bon soir, M. le Pirate,

 

If you wish to get rid of Errol, you may send him to my cabin. I'm sure I can find something

for him to do while I model my white gown (I asked Gene Tierney to lend me hers from Laura,

but if you don't mind, the next time you capture a ship, can you see about swiping a mink

coat for me? It gets a might chilly on the quarter deck. :D )

 

I hope you enjoy the article and share your thoughts. I will see about adjusting the margins, I

hate when that happens!

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I have always felt ambivalent about Stoddard because he knew what he was doing by taking the credit and still he didn't speak up but rode to glory on the back of another man.

 

Whoa! Miss Goddess--Come on now, don't be shy! Tell me how you really feel... :-)

 

I don't know that I can fully come to that depth of emotion--but I do agree he could have spoken up. However, I don't necessarily see it as a character flaw that he kept silent. He was more or less placed into a situation where he sort of needed to be who he'd become in order to do the things he was going to do.(Does that make sense?? ) He actually hated it at first anyway--it was only after he knew the truth that he was able to live with the "glory". But by then it became his obligation to live with it, because it was going to help the state as much as it was going to help his own personal life. And he never "asked" Doniphin for help--at least not in the way he got it--so it was not like he set out to steal anything from him in terms of the life Tom could have had, etc. If Doniphan had wanted him to tell the truth about the situation, I think he would have stepped out of the shadows with his gun still smoking just after the shot was fired.

 

But I do agree he was a tragic character...I think I said something in the Western thread about how if you use your imagination you can picture him walking a little less tall later in life. And he knew that he'd lost everything he was ever planning on having for himself. It was this huge life-changing event. But it was always a life he chose for himself, and we are only left to use our imagination as to how it must have been for him. That is one of the things that helps draw you inside this story--It's much more dramatic that you know he is dead when the film begins rather than having them show up for a death scene and reminisce right before he kicks off. After the story is told you are left with only your own imagination to fill in the gaps.

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I love this! TMWSLV is always fun to talk about.

 

Ro- You are right. Some men are born great, and some have greatness thrust upon them. Ranse had greatness thrust upon him- by Doniphon. Tom knew what he was doing, and he thrust Ranse into his role because he could, and because he knew the changes were needed and Ranse would be able to effect them. If Tom had stepped out of the shadows, he might have been elected and I don't think he would've been comfortable in that role nor necessarily done a good job.... Hallie would always have thought of Ranse and slowly she would have seen Tom's failings.... He couldn't allow that to happen. As it stands, in Hallie's eyes(as well as ours since we leave at Tom's peak) Tom will always be the great hero. And that's how he wanted it.

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As it stands, in Hallie's eyes(as well as ours since we leave at Tom's peak) Tom will always be the great hero. And that's how he wanted it.

 

Hadn't considered it exactly in that light before, but you could be right!

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*the next time you capture a ship, can you see about swiping a mink*

*coat for me? It gets a might chilly on the quarter deck. )*

 

The next time we go a-plunderin' I will put a mink coat on my list. And maybe we'll even capture Errol for you. ;)

 

*hope you enjoy the article and share your thoughts. I will see about adjusting the margins, I hate when that happens!*

 

But you know it wasn't you. These wide margins are usually caused by an oversized picture that has been posted. Pictures should be at about 400x400 in size for a good fit. You probably know this already, but if they are too large they will extend the right margin for every post that comes after.

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