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The Bonfire of the Vanities


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How the heck did this make the cut as a classic film? It was released in 1990 to terrible reviews. I found it embarrassingly bad.

Please reassure me that this is not TCM's direction.

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  • Konrad changed the title to The Bonfire of the Vanities

I caught some of BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES the other day.  The last 3/5's of it.  Forgot it was on and when I flipped the dial to TCM there it was.  It may have been intended as satire at the time of its release but it seems more 'true-to-life' now than satirical. 

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I forgot Richard Belzer was in it (miss him on SVU).  Tom Hanks had no chemistry with either women (Melanie G. and Kim C.).  The story was serialized in Rolling Stone Magazine, if I recollect correctly.  Satire or heavy-handed.  If you want to see a great movie based on a Tom Wolfe book, watch The Right Stuff (different director). Also, more interesting topic for me.  I admired astronauts since I was young.  Great cast about astronauts and their wives (also Sam Shephard - died of ALS too young - as Chuck Yeager).  There was an article in one of the newspapers I read the other day about who qualifies as an astronaut.  Branson, Bezos, etc. are not true astronauts (they just have too much money to throw around).

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  • 1 month later...

Wealthy industrialists building their own space ships?  Come on, that's the plot of Frau im Mond, though that thing Elon Musk is trying to build comes across as more of a bona fide sci fi space ship than what Bezos took his little jaunt in.

Anyway, getting back to the original subject,  as great as it is when TCM shows the Classics with a capital C, I also like it when they show the lesser films as well.  Some are still interesting as artifacts of their time, and the famous flops give us a chance to judge for ourselves what went wrong.

Now, while I enjoyed "The Right Stuff", both as a book and as a movie,  I half to say that Bonfire left a bad taste in my mouth.  None of the characters were particularly likeable, and whatever satire was executed with all the subtlety of a baseball bat across the teeth.

 

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The real Bonfire of the Vanities would make a great film. Has it ever been depicted in the movies? Savonarola is featured as a character, but a feature film devoted to him, from his childhood up to his execution, would be fascinating. He's one of history's enigmatic characters.

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1549474357_640px-Savonarola-preaching-ag

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