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Peter Bogdonovich & the future of "The Essentials"


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How much longer will we be subjected to Peter Bogdonovich's appalling impressions and constant references to his personal conversations (as though if HE hasn't spoken to the maker of a film, it couldn't possibly be a film worth seeing)? The Essentials are supposed to be for the viewers (aren't they?), not a stage on which Bogdonovich can display his not-so-impressive and dubious personal remembrances. Impressions of greater men (or women) are fine for dinner parties, but beneath the dignity of TCM and disrespectful the filmmakers he mimics.

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I'm not a big fan of Bogdonovich, but I don't think it's disrespectful of him to mimic an actor or actress while reiterating what they said to him. It's obviously done affectionately. My problem with The Essentials is while they show great movies, they show them over and over and over, as if there are no other great movies out there. I don't think TCM needs The Essentials at all, since the films are in their library anyway and can be shown anytime (and are). It seems TE season is very short and is repeated as if it were a major network show. I don't know if TE hosts choose their own movies to show, but they all seem to choose the same ones half the time. The movies are great, but let's see something else that's great.

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Wow, Peter "Stuffypants" Bogdonovich does celebrity impressions?! I'm almost tempted to tune into The Essentials just to check that out. :P I've only seen ads for it, and he always has that stony expression on his face... and his hands perpetually folded in front of him. It amuses me.

 

But anyway, looks like Peter chooses movies based on his "connections" to the actors or directors involved...which is kinda self-serving and egotistical. Like the movie's just an excuse to tell his anecdote and brag about knowing the celebrities. Tsk tsk.

 

I completely agree that The Essentials isn't ...well, essential viewing. ;) What's the point? I saw "White Heat" and "The Shop Around The Corner" were on as part of the "regular" programming, within a week or so of their airing on The Essentials. And The Essentials runs two days in a row! Way too much repetition there. I guess we really are supposed to tune into the show just to listen to Bogdonovich. :P

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Like crispycomment, I have only seen commercials for The Essentials. But I must admit, the supposed celebrity impressions makes me want to watch it. Peter Bogdonovich reminds me of someone who was fired from doing historical biogrophies so he sticks with talking about classic movies instead. So hearing that he has a personality catches my attention for sure! Yay for TE!

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Bogdanovich may be our last connection to some of the classic era stars and directors. Next weekend's showing of The Awful Truth will, I hope, be an opportunity to hear PB talk about Leo McCarey. I'll appreciate PB as long as he's with us.

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The Essentials might be more essential if we had more time to find out about the movie and the people behind it. Most of us already know why it might be essential in the history of the movies but I like to know as much as I can. If you have directors hosting I'd like to know more about how it's put together and how that sets it apart.

 

I don't see anything wrong with Peter. I know there are as many opinions as there are viewers but I think the fact that he knew most of these people helps. It seems better than getting the info third hand. He's no better or worse then Pollack was. He may not be any better than who follows but it's nice to get a different perspective.

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I enjoy listening to Bogdanovich's stories, they make the movie all that much more personal. It's great that he actually interacted with these wonderful people. I also think he does pretty good impressions. I hope he's around for awhile. Me thinks that some people are going to complain NO MATTER WHO is doing TE. It's happened before Bogdanovich - and no doubt it's gonna happen after Bogdanovich.

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I started a drinking game (with Pepsi since I don't drink alcohol) where I would take one sip for everytime Peter says the following:

 

"When I asked so and so..."

"When I had lunch with so and so..."

"So and so told me once..."

 

and take two sips for every impersonation.

 

okay it sounded like a good idea at the time.

 

Miss Randi

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Peter,

 

If you continue as host and decide to "Essential-ize" your own work (don't be concerned about how that sort of thing may appear--you wouldn't be the first), please include "Targets" from 1968. I viewed this two or three years ago and the movie has lost none of its power and timeliness.

 

Okay. I know the host probably does not actually choose the "Essentials".

 

Rusty

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