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DownGoesFrazier

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford

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>Rob Ford is many things - a crack-smoking, binge-drinking, potty-mouthed, uncouth simpleton. But to me, Rob Ford is perhaps most importantly a symptom of amalgamation.

 

Absolutely. If Ontario Premier Mike Harris hadn't amalgamated Toronto and the regions around it, the world's media wouldn't be talking about Rob Ford today.

 

As for what this topic has to do with movies, willbefree? Right now, nothing. But a year or two from now, when the inevitable Rob Ford movie comes out, we'll be talking about him again. You might consider this thread to be a warmup.

 

If you want to relate a Ford thread to TCM, however, on the topic of populist politicians in the movies, there's Broderick Crawford in All the King's Men, as well as Jimmy Cagney's equivalent role in A Lion Is In The Streets, both based, of course, on Louisiana governor Huey Long.

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Funny that you should make a comparison to a classic movie. I was just thinking that Rob Ford is a very similar to Lonesome Rhodes (Andy Griffith) in A Face in the Crowd (1957).

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AND, don't forget Spence in John Ford's 'The Last Hurrah" here, Tom.

 

(...though of course Tracy's character in that one is a little more likable than the characters in your examples)

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It's a common misconception that All the King's Men (1949) is supposed to be based on Huey Long. It's not, in fact. For one thing Huey Long, though a virtual dictator of Louisiana who bordered on fascism, was never as amoral as Broderick Crawford's Willie Stark (who commits adultery in the film, among other transgressions).

 

Robert Penn Warren, who, in 1947, wrote the book which was later adapted for the screen, stated later that Willie Stark was not supposed to be Huey Long. Perhaps that is why All the King's Men is set in an unnamed state.

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Thanks for that info, ThomErnstTVO. The similarities between the real life populist and the fictional one are strong enough, though, to believe that the Stark characterization, if not actually Long in all particulars, was still strongly influenced by his story.

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Only Candaian politics.

 

Funny haven't seen any comments by you in a while on all the treads related to movies but you show up on this one.

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ThomErnest wrote:

 

>Rob Ford is many things - a crack-smoking, binge-drinking, potty-mouthed, uncouth simpleton. But to me, Rob Ford is perhaps most importantly a symptom of amalgamation. Since Old Toronto and the surrounding suburbs of Etobicoke, Scarborough, and North York were all placed under the City of Toronto umbrella, a great divide has become increasingly evident.

 

Right Thom...the media calls it the "905" area vs Toronto (referring, as I"m sure you know, to the "other" area phone code - as opposed to good old 416.)

 

I agree, if Toronto hadn't been amalgamated ( under another delightful politician, Mike Harris) back in the 90s, this "downtown Toronto values versus the 905 suburbs" dynamic would never have arisen.

Of course, I am simplifying things a little...but still, I think that one group vs another under the same political electoral area has caused a number of problems.

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Right, Dargo. Tracy's small town mayor in The Last Hurrah would be a good comparison. There is nothing ominous about Tracy, though, as you rightly pointed out. He is, in fact, an admirable guy. Not quite the same story taking place in TO today.

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>You mean the Rob Ford made for TV movie with some washed out TV actor playing him? A real tour de force no doubt.

 

Well, HOPEFULLY in efforts to "grasp the true essence" of Ford, whatever actor they use will be 200lbs overweight ALSO, LD!!!

 

(...sorry, just couldn't resist THIS "shallow comment" EITHER!!!...though THIS time I AIN'T gonna delete it, sorry!) LOL

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Yep, "The Last Hurrah" might be one of the few films about politics in which the protagonist isn't presented as "totally" corrupt or an individual whose first concern is of himself.

 

Can you think of another one? Unless it's a glossed-over biopic of an actual politico in history, I can't.

 

(...okay, MAYBE Hank Fonda in "The Best Man", but then again Vidal wrote his character to be the "near-sainted Liberal", as I think we all know...even us Liberals!) ;) LOL

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I have to be honest - the thought of a film about Ford could be potentially fascinating as an exploration of the power of a populist politician - a man playing the role of "victim," blasting the media and all critics around him for accusations of drug and alcohol use, until he is finally exposed as a liar and phony with a secret underworld lifestyle, yet most of his legion of followers still rationalize his behaviour with a "nobody's perfect" shrug of the shoulders and are ready to vote for him again.

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Well Ham. as long as you don't count the time some classless guy around here around here offhandedly mentioned how ugly Anthony's weiner...I MEAN Anthony Weiner is, I suppose it's been surprising hunky-dory in this baby!

 

(...'cause there WAS a little complaining about THAT for a while anyway!) ;)

 

LOL

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>childish comments regarding someone's appearance even if he is a public figure. His looks are relevant to what?

 

This thread is the first time I had seen a picture of Rob Ford, thank you. His appearance illustrates that he has zero pride in himself so why would he have any pride in his city or citizens?

 

Appearance important? Yes.

Pride important? Yes.

Decorum & scruples important? Yes.

 

Especially if you want anyone to take you seriously as an intelligent hard working thoughtful person in public office.

Your appearance tells a lot about how you view yourself and how you view the world.

 

0fa0dc14.jpg

 

What kind of message does Rob Ford's appearance convey? A man who doesn't care how he looks or what he puts into his body.

We didn't need a scandal to illustrate his lack of control nor his disrespect for others.

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<< What does all this have to do with Turner Classic Movies? >>

 

Nothing really. I'm just trying to answer Finance's question (see original post)...

 

In my thread from Nov. 3, I tried to tie the Mayor Ford stuff to classic movies about corrupt/good mayors/municipal politicians, etc.

 

And while not being about mayors/city councillors, I guess films like "All the King's Men" and "A Face in the Crowd" help to understand the Mayor Ford phenomenon and the media circus at Toronto City Hall.

 

Any other movies users can think of??

 

Anyway, Mayor Rob Ford made "Saturday Night Live" last night (Nov. 16) and of interest to Canuckleheads like me were the hoser accents used by Bobby Moynihan (as Rob Ford) and Taran Killam (as CBC news guy), eh...

 

They didn't sound like anybody I know from Toronto (I lived there for a number of years), but maybe the hoser accent was meant to be part of the joke??

(I mean, Lorne Michaels is from Toronto and he's what people from Toronto generally sound like... Oh well, eh?)

 

Here's the skit and a critique of it, including about the Canuck accents:

 

http://www.torontosun.com/2013/11/17/rob-ford-spoofed-in-snl-opening-sketch

 

A brief quote from the article above states:

 

"Many Canadian Twitter users were also insulted by the bad accents. There was the obligatory "eh" and a really bad "aboot" ? the typical stereotypes. It?s a shame too, since Rob Ford's accent IS really funny. Hoser accents must be hard for Americans to master. And just for the record, Scottish people say "a-boot" ? Canadians say "a-boat." Get it right for next time."

 

To wrap this up, Mayor Rob Ford makes me think of Harold Ballard:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harold_Ballard

 

Ballard was a famous/infamous Toronto character who owned Maple Leaf Gardens and the Toronto Maple Leafs hockey team.

He often did outrageous things that riled people up:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harold_Ballard#Other_incidents_and_anecdotes

 

He was a wealthy man with a "populist" touch who had lots of support despite his wild personal behaviour. Ballard also did jail time for fraud, but bounced back afterward like nothing had happened.

His children were as outrageous as he was and there were family squabbles between Ballard and his kids and between the kids themselves that often made the news...

 

Anyway, Mayor Rob Ford and his family remind me of the Ballards...

(That's a clue to how old I man that I still remember Harold Ballard and his clan...)

 

So I suppose you can honestly say that for Toronto, Rob Ford is nothing new...

 

Edited by: RMeingast on Nov 17, 2013 10:12 AM

Fixed punctuation in Toronto Sun quote.

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>And just for the record, Scottish people say "a-boot" ? Canadians say "a-boat." Get it right for next time."

 

THANK you, RM. I've been tellin' people THIS for years now, but nobody seems to believe this ol' Californian and now Arizonan here! ;)

 

And speaking of "people being offended by others doing accents", I have to ask: When exactly did THIS now become another "politically incorrect" thing to do, anyway?

 

(...to which I say: IF you happen to be, say, of Italian decent, does this mean that you're supposed to now be "offended" by Chico Marx every time "Duck Soup" or "A Night at the Opera" is shown on TCM???...and IF one IS, then MY suggestion to them would be: You'a should'a get'a life'a!!!")

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Just one more thing and then I shut up...

 

Rob Ford and Harold Ballard even resemble each other...

 

Check out this old photo (Ballard is on left wearing cream-coloured jacket, young guy on right is Michael Merrall):

http://hpmarketing.ca/images/Picture16.jpg

 

Anyway, Torontonians had a love/hate relationship towards Ballard.

Mostly because Ballard took a top NHL team (Toronto Maple Leafs) and made it the butt of jokes as one of the NHL's worst teams.

 

A chronicle of some of Ballard's "villainy" here:

http://www.fiveminutesforfighting.com/2012/09/a-history-of-harold-ballards-villainy.html

 

The more I think on it, the more I wonder if Mayor Rob Ford IS Harold Ballard reincarnated...

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That was from the "Toronto Sun" article on the "SNL" skit:

 

"Many Canadian Twitter users were also insulted by the bad accents. There was the obligatory "eh" and a really bad "aboot" - the typical stereotypes. It?s a shame too, since Rob Ford's accent IS really funny. Hoser accents must be hard for Americans to master. And just for the record, Scottish people say "a-boot" - Canadians say "a-boat." Get it right for next time."

 

Article here with skit and critique:

http://www.torontosun.com/2013/11/17/rob-ford-spoofed-in-snl-opening-sketch

 

And I wasn't offended by it. Just noticed it and how silly it sounded.

(Like Lady Gaga's "New Yawk" sqwack she used in her skits, just meant as silly, I guess...)

But then the whole sketch was silly. It's a comedy show, so they were probably having fun with the Canuck accents.

An inside joke for Canadians, maybe??

I mean, who else would notice or care???

 

No biggie...

 

Now I shut up... Going to go and look for my copy of "Pal Hal" by Dick Beddoes (now that Ballard is reborn in Toronto)...

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>And I wasn't offended by it.

 

I didn't get the impression you were offended, duuuuuuude.

 

(...notice my stereotypical Californian use of the long and drawn out word of "dude" here, RM) ;) LOL

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As one who lives in the Detroit area, and has family that still lives in that city, I look at the whole Ford mess with amusement.

 

Did he buy and smoke crack? That's not good for ANY political figure.

 

Did he buy the crack with his own money, or appropriate munincipal funds to buy it?

 

Detroit just recently got rid of KWAME KILPATRICK. He did just about everything else BUT crack. But if he did, his record displays that he likely would have dipped into munincipal funds to do so, as he did when buying his wife a new Navigator. In fact, he owes the city more than $10 million. Toronto really hasn't much of a BE-yotch.

 

Sepiatone

 

Edited by: Sepiatone on Nov 17, 2013 11:23 AM

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Yes, I guess it's all relative...

 

And it is a serious issue in Toronto... Just that there appears to be not much anybody can do about Mayor Ford right now...

So, you either can laugh, or cry...

 

TomoNews in Taiwan summarized what happened last week in its latest "Rob Ford Scandal For Dummies" segment done in amazingly realistic animation (Yes, Charlie Sheen has reached out to Mayor Ford):

 

 

English-language version here:

 

Canadian references galore including beavers, "Tim Snortins," CN Tower, etc....

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