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A longer "Caine Mutiny"?


markfp2
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In the latest issue of Films of The Golden Age there's a very interesting interview (from 1987) with Van Johnson. In it he tells how he saw the director's cut of THE CAINE MUTINY and it clocked in at a little over three hours and to quote him "it was terrific". He goes on to say that Columbia studio chief Harry Cohen cut an hour out of it for no other reason than to allow theaters an extra showing a day. He further stated that he had been told that the director's cut no longer existed.

 

Longer doesn't always make a film better, but it sure would be interesting to see that cut.

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There is, or was, a longer cut of just about every movie. Cutting them down to the most effective length is usually an arduous process; a lot of good material is often discarded along the way, not because it is not, in itself good, or even wonderful, but because it detracts from the film's overall effect, which should be always be the filmmakers' primary concern.

 

If one loves a movie at its released length, one is often desirous of seeing all the material that was excised, but one is then also apt to be less critical of the castoff lifts and trims.

 

PS: It's Harry Cohn, not "Cohen."

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They could have kept cutting as far as I'm concerned. Specifically anything to do with the May Wynn and Robert Francis relationship. I find that it just bogs the film down with unnecessary baggage.

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That courtroom scene wherein he does that little business with the FAKE STAMMERING was the worst I have ever seen Bogie.

 

The ball bearings...pretty cheapie hook, I thought. But audiences and (not-very-good) critics get excited about flotsom like that...Brando picking up and trying on Saint's white glove in On the Waterfront or his petting of a damn cat in his Mafia epic.

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If Johnson's recollections were not apocryphal, I would imagine that much footage would have included the Naval Academy sequences from the book.

 

As for Queeg, Lloyd Nolan was much better than Bogart. I have a kinescope of the televised CAINE MUTINY COURT-MARTIAL starring the Broadway cast (sans the late John Hodiak). Nolan was outstanding and gave a much more layered portrayal than did Bogart in the picture.

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>>Nolan was outstanding and gave a much more layered portrayal than did Bogart in the picture.

 

I recall an interview with Lloyd Nolan from the time that he was doing the JULIA series on NBC. The interviewer asked Nolan if he had any regrets that while he was playing a private eye before Bogart, including a renamed Philip Marlowe in TIME TO KILL.

 

Nolan responded that he had a long career and no regrets, and that in fact many people had come to him to say they thought he was great in the movie THE CAINE MUTINY. He said that when he would remind them that he had the role on TV, that Bogart was in the film, some of them argued that it was he (Nolan) who was in the film.

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> {quote:title=Hudson_Hawk wrote:}{quote}> PS: It's Harry Cohn, not "Cohen."

 

You're right, of course. It was spelled "Cohen" in the article and I never picked up on the misspelling. My mind must be slipping in my old age.

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

> If Johnson's recollections were not apocryphal, I would imagine that much footage would have included the Naval Academy sequences from the book.

>

> As for Queeg, Lloyd Nolan was much better than Bogart. I have a kinescope of the televised CAINE MUTINY COURT-MARTIAL starring the Broadway cast (sans the late John Hodiak). Nolan was outstanding and gave a much more layered portrayal than did Bogart in the picture.

 

I'd love to see Nolan in the part. He must've been a perfect Queeg, as he was a wonderful actor who never really got the acclaim he deserved.

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There is a LP recording for sale on Amazon from the TV special starring Lloyd Nolan, Frank Lovejoy from the 1955 "4 Star Jubilee" of "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial". It's only the recording no video, but don't give up hope. I recently found a site where you could buy a copy of "The Petrified Forest" with Bogart and Bacall and Henry Fonda from the early 50's live TV. So maybe someone out there has a copy of this special...

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