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1776


FredCDobbs
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You may want to check out the following.

 

http://johnadams1776.tripod.com/1776accuracy.html

 

http://mediapede.org/filmhistory/guides/1776.pdf

 

http://www.uta.edu/faculty/gtucker/US/Historical%20References%20in%201776.html

 

http://theshoutheardroundtheworld.wordpress.com/2012/07/17/the-musical-1776-and-historys-most-obnoxious-revolution/

 

And if you have a copy of the mini series John Adams from HBO, it does a pretty good job of what happened as well. One of the very best series of all time IMHO.

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The songs are mostly mediocre: "Mama Look Sharp" is cringeworthy, while "Does Anybody Care" and "He Plays the Violin" are almost as embarrassing. "Dear Mr Adams" has the best lyrics of the score, with some amusing if elementary rhymes (and one embarrassing moment of choreography). The intended showstopper "Molasses To Rum To Slaves" isn't too bad either.

 

The extended version includes the number "Cool, Considerate Men" which had been cut from the 1972 release (allegedly b/c Nixon wanted it (?)... Did he really think a movie song might cost him votes? He must've thought the movie would be a big hit rather than the box office flop it was). Like "Molasses". "Cool" is better musically than lyrically, but it is interestingly choreographed and the closest thing in the film to actual CINEMATIC film-making (most of the direction is awful, though I'll admit there is a perverse pleasure in counting examples of inept direction: "Look! There's William Daniels sitting stiffly on the table, just as he must have done on Broadway in order to break up the staging! Look, there's the messenger delivering the messages with the exact expression on his face each time!").

 

The saving graces of 1776 remains screenwriter Peter Stone's witty repartee and the superb cinematography of Harry Stradling Jr.

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Historian and film reviewer Alex von Tunzelmann rates the film a "C" for history and a "D" for entertainment:

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2010/aug/12/1776-congress-musical-jefferson-reel-history

 

(She gives thanks to Dr. Nicholas Cole at the end of her article. Dr. Cole is a University of Oxford historian:

http://www.spc.ox.ac.uk/Staff/69/Staff.html?StaffId=188

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The play was not a Broadway flop. It was nominated for 5 Tony Awards and WON 3. One for Best Musical. Clive Barnes of the NY Times gave it a glowing review, so did the NY Post and the NY Daily News. Clive Barnes in his review for the NY Times wrote he recommended seeing the play without reservation.

 

My childhood best friends brother produced 1776 on Broadway. It was a hit and ran on Broadway for 3 years and had revivals.

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Yes, you are right lav. I remember it beating out another musical (was it Promises, Promises?) that was considered a shoo-in until 1776 opened. The film, though was not a success. I've never seent the film version. Just didnt appeal to me......

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