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100 Years of Shame!


Guest Griffin, Mark

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Guest Griffin, Mark

With apologies to TCM...Did anyone notice that the CBS telecast of the American Film Institute's "100 Years, 100 Passions" countdown did not include a single gay themed movie? Oh, that chaste kiss between a tuxedo clad Marlene Dietrich and another woman in "Morocco" was glimpsed (ranking at #83) but even that sublime moment cannot and should not constitute representation for the presence of gay people in films during the past 100 years. Was anyone else sort of outraged by this rather glaring omission? You would think after documentaries like "The Celluloid Closet" and "The Silver Screen: Color Me Lavender" we would have progressed beyond this kind of invisibility but according to the AFI, that doesn't seem to be the case. Not even the ultra "safe" "Philadelphia" landed on the list - though it should be noted that "On Golden Pond" clocked in at #22. To voice your concerns, please contact GLAAD at #1-800-429-6334. I'm very interested to read anyone else's thoughts in this regard.

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Guest cooper, jeane

Mark - I can appreciate your disgust, but I never got that far to notice. Personally, I have a difficult time when the creators are also the same people praising and/or analyzing their films. I have no problem with a healthy ego - but an oversized one is something that grates on my nerves. Hearing Cameron Crowe talking about the tears he had when Renee Zellweger was expressing a range of emotions in "Jerry Maquire" - I could not help but think.... you were the director - did you not know this was expected! Why not ask Joe the Barber or Cindy the Waitress if they had tears? I am so tired of has-beens, wannabees and so called greats always giving us their opinion. Let's hear from the masses once in awhile. At least Radio City looked good. Now forgive my ignorance - but I am missing why "On Golden Pond" is considered a "gay" movie? All I remember is Henry Fonda talking to the mailman about "some old lesbian" that died. Could you make me more informed? Thanks!

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Guest son, jery

I've stopped reading these "Best of..." lists because they mean zero to most people. You always know that "Citizen Kane" will be ranked number one--mostly by snobby, vapid would-be critics who've never seen it. But--this is the movie their film instructors raved about. I don't think any movie should ever be ranked because of its "gay" quotient. It'd be the same thing as ranking a movie because of its "black" sensibility. It smacks too much of political correctness carried to an extreme. But then I've always wondered about Ashley Wilkes in GWTW. He was based on a gay buddy of Margaret Mitchell!

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Guest Griffin, Mark

Dear Jery Son: Maybe Maggie Mitchell's buddy might account for the fact that I developed a major crush on Leslie Howard from the first moment he appeared in "The Petrified Forest" (1936)? Apparently he was quite the ladie's man offscreen but no matter...Leslie will always claim a very special place in my heart. PS - You're probably right about these endless lists and all the political agendas. It just would have been nice to have seen one same sex couple included in the clips -- I mean, even "Lady and the Tramp" (animated dogs no less!) were invited but no gay folks aside from Marlene in tails! Whatever...

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Guest mongo

Since there were 400 films nominated of which 100 were chosen (voted for) perhaps movies like "Philadelphia", "The Children's Hour" (1962), "Making Love" and "Personal Best" were nominees. Check out www.afi.com for the list of 400 films.

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Guest Amory

Hey everyone! I hear everyone on their personal vendettas against AFI. Mine has to do with the excluding of silent movies from every one of their lists. Don't get me wrong; I was VERY happy to see that "City Lights" got into the top ten! And I nearly swooned off my couch when they showed "The Sheik". But who remembers their list of the greatest movies of all time? Where were "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse", "The Big Parade", and "Greed"? I mean, silent movies were the ONLY movies for a long while. They're excluding a whole era of great and classic movies, the era that started us out! Due respect should be given to these movies that we are losing every day. Sorry for ranting, but it's like they're forgetting a slice of history. I'm just glad the WONDERFUL people at TCM are keeping the silents around for future viewers to watch, enjoy, and critique. Thanks TCM!

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Guest olmsted, l

Amory, don't forget Way Down East (1920) made the list also. Also, among the 400 nominess was Flesh and the Devil (1927), The Big Parade (1925), Broken Blossoms (1919), Carmen (1915), When the Clouds Roll By (1919), Daddy Long Legs (1919), Cleopatra (1912, along with the 2 other versions), Enoch Arden (1925--a personal favorite) plus a few others I can't think of. A hundred years of movies is a lot of ground to cover and although they were looking for the most ROMANTIC, they still had a lot of different genres to cover--unfortunately, a lot of the movies chosen seem to cater to the general public rather than those of us who like to dig a little deeper. Glad we have these boards where we are able to post our OWN favorites lists!

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Guest Amory

For sure! You know, posting on this thread also reminded me that the awful version of "The Great Gatsby" with Robert Redford was also on the list of nominees. This got me thinking: I wish someone would make a decent movie out of any of F. Scott Fitzgerald's works. Some think "The Last Tycoon" with...who is it?...is it Al Pacino? The name escapes me for the moment. Anyway, some think that was a good version, but I disagree. So far, the only good movie is "The Great Gatsby" made by the A&E networks, but A&E doesn't really have the big fanbase of, say, MTV. Even that one was a little hard to sit through. I guess it must be really hard to capture the magic of the novel on screen, but the man was a literary magician. It's just really disappointing. And I know this happens with other authors as well, which makes me just as angry! *lol*

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Guest K, Sandy

jeryson, I had to laugh at your comment about Ashley Wilkes. My fiance, while admittedly no great fan of GWTW, remarked while watching the special, "Why does Scarlett want Ashley? He's obviously gay." Or words to that effect. I had no idea that Ashley was based on a gay friend of Miss Mitchell's!

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Guest K, Sandy

Amory, I believe that THE LAST TYCOON starred Robert DeNiro. I love the works of F. Scott Fitzgerald and I've yet to see a film version of any of his books that was satisfying. I thought that the Redford version of Gatsby was beautifully photographed and well cast, yet somehow left me feeling empty. I didn't see the A&E version, because it was not well received by critics, but I think that now I'll check it out.

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Guest son, jery

Sandy and Mark and all others, from what I've read of Margaret Mitchell, she was not only buddies with this mysterious gay friend--she was madly in love with him! She never understood why he wouldn't her. Back then, you were supposed to get married, no matter what! I think this buddy killed himself. I'll have to brush up on Margaret's life. By the way, there really was a Rhett Butler lover in her life! Everyone who knew him says he was devastatingly sexy, gorgeous and mean as hell! My kinda guy!

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Guest Amory

Thanks Sandy. And I hope you do check out the A&E version, even though it does have a tendancy to drag on. What other authors do you like and what film adaptations don't you like?

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Guest K, Sandy

I'm a big Jane Austen fan. I love the MGM version of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE with Greer Garson, EMMA with Gwyneth Paltrow, SENSE AND SENSIBILITY with Emma Thompson. I also liked the version of MANSFIELD PARK that came out a couple of years. Actually, I thought that it was an improvement on the book in many ways!

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Guest Amory

Wow! I'm a Jane Austen fan too! I'm waiting for the film version of "Northanger Abbey" to come out, even though they haven't casted Henry Tilney yet! =D Do you know Rachel Leigh Cook? She's supposed to play Catherine. I don't know about that, but I'd love Hugh Jackman or the guy who plays Horatio Hornblower on A&E to be Henry. Who's your favorite Austen hero?

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Guest K, Sandy

Whoa, Rachel Leigh Cook in NORTHANGER ABBEY? I can't picture that one. But I couldn't picture Gwyneth as Emma, either, and she pulled it off. I do like Hugh Jackman; did you see KATE AND LEOPOLD? He was quite dashing in that. My favorite Austen hero would have to be Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice. I haven't seen the much talked about performance of Colin Firth in that role, but I thought that Olivier captured his standoffishness perfectly in the MGM version.

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Guest son, jery

Did anyone notice the closer-than-close relationship between those gorgeous hunks, Buddy Rogers and Richard Arlen, in the l927 "Wings"? What's so beautiful about this friendship is that it was shown in such a fabulous way--you know these guys who came from the same town to fight in World War I were close buddies, maybe even more. But there was nothing exploitive about it. When Arlen dies, Buddy Rogers behaves as anyone would when someone much loved is dying. They embrace, kiss, weep. This is one of the great movie love affairs ever put on film. And I don't think anyone's ever objected to it.Because no one had heard of the word "gay" and it wasn't approached as a "gay" thing.

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Guest mongo

That's just it...during past wars especially WWI and WWII the guys became true blue buddies and in most instances it wasn't a gay thing at all. These guys who trained together, bunked together, forte together and in some cases died together became very fond and protective of each other. It was common to pal around together with arms over one anothers shoulders in public as well a walk to a cat house together overseas. My brother-in-law who was in WWII still hugs and kisses his buddies at reunions and believe me he is as straight as an arrow. It was a beautiful thing years ago when buddies and pals showed their affection for each other and without bias and ridicule.

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Guest walker, ken

I would just like to add a comment to mongo's post.Being a veteran of the Korean conflict,your comrades became like brothers to you.My life often depended on them when we saw action.And yes,I lost some good friends to combat.Tears were shed and nothing was thought or said.The actions of the two men in "Wings" were real in every sense!We seem to have lost a lot of the meaning of comradeship these days.Too bad.Believe me,if I were lucky enough to see some of my buddies today,there would be a firm handshake and a big hug to boot!

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Guest Amory

Yeah, I saw Kate & Leopold, and thank goodness Hugh was in it, otherwise I would have given up halfway through! Colin Firth is a great actor, and can play Darcy to boot. I do love anything Olivier is in, though - in a toga, as the bad guy, I don't care! =D

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Guest eva, little

Alix, I believe what Jery Son and Ken and Mongo were emphasizing is that the Buddy Rogers/Richard Arlen friendship in WINGS was NOT a gay thing. But in today's climate, this is what it would have been seen as which would trivialize something beautiful and natural. Today's movies would have exploited this angle and ruined it.

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Guest walker, ken

little eva, I haven't saw your name on the boards ,so welcome!As to your response,as it concerns my comments,you were right on target!Todays films have lost sight [some anyway],of meaningful relationships.A fine exception is "Saving Private Ryan". The opening scene showing the elder Ryan crying at the grave of one of the men who saved his life,is an honest heart felt emotion.I cried with him. I'm sure that the scene with Arlen and Rodgers would bring smirks and giggles from audiences if shown in a theater today.To bad! It would be nice to have some of that innocence in the world today.

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Okay. I mean if it **was** suppose to represent a gay relationship, I sure didn't see it. It was exactly as you said, beautiful and natural. Thanks, Eva.

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  • 5 months later...
Guest Schissler, Ken

Are you serious? No recognition of queers in the movies? Its bad enough that queers get more than enough attention as it is. I don't know of any special right or privileges given to normal people, Why should queers be given any? Let's be responsible for our actions. A "gay" person is queer, plane and simple. Why hide there abnormalities behind a rainbow screen. I think it is very unfortunate that queers have taken good symbols like the rainbow and ruined it, and complimentary words like gay and destroyed them. Get real and get back in the closet and allow normal people to live free again.

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