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And The Oscar For Dullest Film Of 1971 Goes To ...


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When RO introduced NICHOLAS AND ALEXANDRA he explained that the reason why Spiegel's production was not a financial success was that the public of 1971 preferred grittier fare such as THE FRENCH CONNECTION.

Osborne is obviously a very polite man, for he did not dare to suggest that the reason for the failure of N&A is that it was a DEADLY DULL movie. Franklin Schaffner, the director of the very exciting PATTON and PAPILLON, was not at his best in this movie. Instead of making it the way David Lean would make his epics, he made it into a talky stage-like production with too many actors, and hardly any action. The many magnificent opportunities this story provided for magnificent battles--Tsushima in the Russo-Japanese War, and the many huge engagements of the Great War--were totally ignored and neglected. Things were not helped by the fact that Michael Jayston was a singularly uncharismatic performer, totally devoid of the magnetic personality of a real star, such as Peter O'Toole.

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When RO introduced NICHOLAS AND ALEXANDRA he explained that the reason why Spiegel's production was not a financial success was that the public of 1971 preferred grittier fare such as THE FRENCH CONNECTION.

Osborne is obviously a very polite man, for he did not dare to suggest that the reason for the failure of N&A is that it was a DEADLY DULL movie. Franklin Schaffner, the director of the very exciting PATTON and PAPILLON, was not at his best in this movie. Instead of making it the way David Lean would make his epics, he made it into a talky stage-like production with too many actors, and hardly any action. The many magnificent opportunities this story provided for magnificent battles--Tsushima in the Russo-Japanese War, and the many huge engagements of the Great War--were totally ignored and neglected. Things were not helped by the fact that Michael Jayston was a singularly uncharismatic performer, totally devoid of the magnetic personality of a real star, such as Peter O'Toole.

 

I've yet to see Nicholas and Alexandra, and I'm sure I'd probably have the same reaction to it as you do, but for the fastest acting insomnia cure of 1971, I'd still nominate Harold and Maude. <_<

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When RO introduced NICHOLAS AND ALEXANDRA he explained that the reason why Spiegel's production was not a financial success was that the public of 1971 preferred grittier fare such as THE FRENCH CONNECTION.

Osborne is obviously a very polite man, for he did not dare to suggest that the reason for the failure of N&A is that it was a DEADLY DULL movie. Franklin Schaffner, the director of the very exciting PATTON and PAPILLON, was not at his best in this movie. Instead of making it the way David Lean would make his epics, he made it into a talky stage-like production with too many actors, and hardly any action. The many magnificent opportunities this story provided for magnificent battles--Tsushima in the Russo-Japanese War, and the many huge engagements of the Great War--were totally ignored and neglected. Things were not helped by the fact that Michael Jayston was a singularly uncharismatic performer, totally devoid of the magnetic personality of a real star, such as Peter O'Toole.

 

"Mary, Queen of Scots" is dull enough to give one a good night sleep.  Zzzzzz.

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I've yet to see Nicholas and Alexandra, and I'm sure I'd probably have the same reaction to it as you do, but for the fastest acting insomnia cure of 1971, I'd still nominate Harold and Maude.

 

What?? What are you - senile?

 

'Harold and Maude' is delightful. A quirky movie with a great performance by Ruth Gordon - who is NEVER boring, least of all in this.

 

Everyone has a right to their opinion and to state it as they wish, but I hope you realize that statements like that do nothing for the likelihood of anybody crediting your judgment going forward.

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When RO introduced NICHOLAS AND ALEXANDRA he explained that the reason why Spiegel's production was not a financial success was that the public of 1971 preferred grittier fare such as THE FRENCH CONNECTION.

Osborne is obviously a very polite man, for he did not dare to suggest that the reason for the failure of N&A is that it was a DEADLY DULL movie. Franklin Schaffner, the director of the very exciting PATTON and PAPILLON, was not at his best in this movie. Instead of making it the way David Lean would make his epics, he made it into a talky stage-like production with too many actors, and hardly any action. The many magnificent opportunities this story provided for magnificent battles--Tsushima in the Russo-Japanese War, and the many huge engagements of the Great War--were totally ignored and neglected. Things were not helped by the fact that Michael Jayston was a singularly uncharismatic performer, totally devoid of the magnetic personality of a real star, such as Peter O'Toole.

 

While N&A is no masterpiece, I'd rather watch it than some Lean films. If you approach it like a very expensive BBC historical serial, it passes the time.

 

I do agree with you about Michael Jayston.

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yup. i pretty much knew what the answer to the question posed in the title of this thread would be, and I concur.

and yet-

N&A's biggest problem (for me) is not even that it is so dull (which it is) but that it is SO BRITISH.

 

It is the Britishest film ever made- from a cast-perspective. Even the guy playing Rasputin sounds like Alistair Sim. I'm fine with British people and I think it's a fine accent, but seeing as how the damned thing is set in Russia, it is ridiculous. I even dare put forth that an ill-educated person could conceivably watch this movie and totally think it was set in England. 

 

I would undertsand maybe allowing the Romanovs and their court British accents as a manner of showing how out of touch they were with their people, but EVERYONE in this thing is straight off the lorrie from Eton...even the men in the Duma, the soldiers and the peasants sound like they're extras from Are You Being Served?

 

I don't honestly think they used one single actual Russian in the making of Nicholas and Alexandra.

 

(and it really seems like they could've used the work.)

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I agree that N&A was dull, dull, dull.  Trapped in its own Art Direction.  I originally saw it in the cinema for what was a History class excursion.  We were studying the Russian Revolution.   So, it probably served a purpose there.  Like a 'Coles' notes version of the revolution for those of us allergic to text books.  But N&A just proved that text books could be more interesting than film at times.

That was Tom Baker, aka Dr. Who as Rasputin.  He recently did the voice over narration in the Little Britain series.

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What?? What are you - senile?

 

'Harold and Maude' is delightful. A quirky movie with a great performance by Ruth Gordon - who is NEVER boring, least of all in this.

 

Everyone has a right to their opinion and to state them as they wish, but I hope you realize that statements like that do nothing for the likelihood of anybody crediting your judgment going forward.

 

Sorry, I didn't realize that buying into a plot involving a romantic relationship between a twentysomething boy and a 79 year old woman was a requirement for demonstrating one's taste in movies.  I also never cared much for Love in the Afternoon.   But to each his own.

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Sorry, I didn't realize that buying into a plot involving a romantic relationship between a twentysomething boy and a 79 year old woman was a requirement for demonstrating one's taste in movies.  I also never cared much for Love in the Afternoon.   But to each his own.

 

You weren't addressing "taste". You were stating that 'Harold and Maude' was the most dull movie of 1971. That's just brainless.

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You weren't addressing "taste". You were stating that 'Harold and Maude' was the most dull movie of 1971. That's just brainless.

 

Fine, I'll just settle for "mindblowingly creepy" and "over-the-top risible", and let you revel in all the excitement involved in a boy getting involved with a woman old enough to be his biological great-grandmother.  But again, to each his own, and if you enjoyed it, more power to you.

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As a lover of Masterpiece Theater/BBC type period pieces I don't find "Nicholas and Alexandra" bad at all but it is certainly not the most exciting of it's genre.  As for 1971 however........... any year that produces TWO LANE BLACKTOP and VANISHING POINT is a great movie year.  "Harold and Maude" is a real stinker though. 

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Fine, I'll just settle for "mindblowingly creepy" and "over-the-top risible", and let you revel in all the excitement involved in a boy getting involved with a woman old enough to be his biological great-grandmother.  But again, to each his own, and if you enjoyed it, more power to you.

 

Well, in the first place, "Mindblowingly creepy" and "over-the-top risible" would be the very opposite of "dullest".

 

Movies don't become cult because of dullness. There may be many aspects making them cult that one finds personally disagreeable, but dull is not one of those aspects.

 

As the movie is mostly about an unusual and humorous friendship between a disaffected, lonely teen and a wise-cracking, free-spirited old lady that only ends in an unorthodox romantic moment later in the film, my guess is that you haven't even seen the damn thing because of your own limitations and prejudices. And yet you're perfectly happy to shoot your unworthy "opinion" of it off in an effort to dissuade others from experiencing it.

 

As that would be a loss to those who actually have an interest in fine cinema and quirky, heartwarming stories, I have to set the record straight. Consider it straightened.

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If this movie wasn't based on history it would be the dullest, sorry to say millions died while this guy was in charge. So this is like a movie about Hilter being dull, it doesn't come off that bad for him. They do have the scene at the end where he is called Bloody Nicholas but not much to show why sadly.

 

It is also too British with the Actors almost sipping tea in every scene, lol.

 

If this movie has one main fault, it is probably they tried to make it as close to the real Nicholas as they could. Still I can see why many detest it as dull.

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Once, in answer to my complaint that there were no battle scenes in this movie, a smart a  s  s responded that this so-called intimate epic was exclusively about the story of Nicholas, Alexandra and their children, and that therefore there was no point in depicting the battles of the Russo-Japanese War and the Great War because the protagonists weren't present at any of them.

According to that skewed logic, movies about the leadership of FDR and Churchill during WWII should not depict any of the tremendous battles of that war because neither Roosevelt nor Churchill were present at any of them!

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Well, in the first place, "Mindblowingly creepy" and "over-the-top risible" would be the very opposite of "dullest".

 

Not necessarily.  Three words:  Richard Milhous Nixon. One can be bad in more than one way.

 

Movies don't become cult because of dullness. There may be many aspects making them cult that one finds personally disagreeable, but dull is not one of those aspects.

 

You must never have seen My Dinner With Andre.

 

As the movie is mostly about an unusual and humorous friendship between a disaffected, lonely teen and a wise-cracking, free-spirited old lady that only ends in an unorthodox romantic moment later in the film, my guess is that you haven't even seen the damn thing because of your own limitations and prejudices. And yet you're perfectly happy to shoot your unworthy "opinion" of it off in an effort to dissuade others from experiencing it.

 

Quite the contrary, I nobly suffered through that train wreck at the Circle Theater in Washington back in the early 70's, with my only consolation being that the ticket was only a dollar. 

 

And why should I care if anyone sees it?  Hell, they can go see Love Story while they're at it, and overflow the Charles River with their tears.

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I found Harold and Maude relentlessly and self-consciously quirky and eccentric (invariably a sign a movie is not funny), but then I've never really cared for anything by Colin Higgins.

 

Just b/c a movie has a cult does not mean it is good (see Rocky Horror for confirmation)

 

For a while back in the day, A Thousand Clowns also fit that description to a T.  Fortunately its cult status got waylaid at some point along the way.

 

And yeah, when I hear a movie character described as "quirky", I also figure that it's just another Hollywood formula picture. 9 times out of 10, it's usually just a synonym for "annoying".

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@AndyM108

 

Nice try. But you should just admit that your nomination of 'Harold and Maude' for dullest movie of 1971 is mindlessly stupid and leave it at that. Hopefully you've learned to think before you post - but I wouldn't bet on it, judging by your feeble sectional responses.

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