"The Producers" Musical DVD

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Greg_M, May 29, 2006.

  1. Greg_M

    Greg_M Screenwriter

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    Anyone else think the framing on the widescreen version of the DVD was a bit tight. In most shots heads were cut off and Uma's head and feet were framed very close with no head room at all. I doubt the camera man would have framed the film this way. It's a bit distracting. I don't remember this being the case at the screening I saw.

    Actually, I'm really not that surprised with the shoddy transfer, Universal barely promoted the film in theaters. Did this even play for two weeks? The film isn't all that bad, yet it could have been better - so could the DVD. And Universal is charging $30 for this?
     
  2. Tino

    Tino Lead Actor
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    I thought Universal promoted the hell out of this film. I guess people just weren't that interested. It played for 10 weeks by the way.

    Haven't gotten around to watching it yet. Soon I hope.
     
  3. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    I looove this movie and the show it's based on. I just wish they would put all the numbers they took out back in the film. While there's always the rationale that some of those numbers may be redundant on film and slow down the pace of the movie, I think they are extraordinary and well worth including, even if through seamless branching. Fortunately they've been included in the Special Features of the current DVD. Unfortunately, I would like to have the option of having them in the movie.
     
  4. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    I thought that the Broadway production was absolutely spectacular (I saw the Steven Weber/ Brad Oscar cast), but didn't see the new movie after reading negative reviews. I liked the original film, but thought the musical stage version was much better.

    Is the new film worth checking out for fans of the stage production?
     
  5. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    Is the new film worth checking out for fans of the stage production?

    Abso-friggin'-lutely.
     
  6. Rob W

    Rob W Supporting Actor

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    The new film IS the stage production ( minus a couple of songs ) with very little alteration for the medium of film. That's one of the biggest criticisms the film received from reviewers.
     
  7. Jace_A

    Jace_A Second Unit

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    The tight framing is a result of the poor direction from Susan Strohem. The film is too in your face to be enjoyable, even as a replication of the Broadway play. Poor Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick just mug their way through the film, without moderating their stage performances. Oly Uma seems to be in a movie (not unusual, given she wasn't in the stage version).

    The film just goes to prove that movies and theatre really are two different mediums and that when adapting your source material from the stage, you really need to consider the intrinsic differences that film poses for an audience. Perhaps a director with some film experience would have been better suited to this material.
     
  8. Doug Bull

    Doug Bull Advanced Member

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    I got the DVD a few weeks ago and really enjoyed it.
    I didn't think it was in your face, as many of the critics have claimed.
    It reminded me of those great MGM Musicals of the past.

    If I have any negatives, it is probably Nathan Lane's poor imitation of Zero Mostel. He would have been much better just being his own likeable self.

    I give the Movie the thumbs up, but I wish I could say the same about the Picture Quality on this DVD.
    The DVD is quite soft, luckily though the sound is very good.

    This is a very enjoyable movie and a must have for all Musical fans.
     
  9. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    The film walks a fine line between being "in your face" and not. Depending on what you're prepared to see, you could either like it or not, but it's totally a matter of personal taste.

    I personally loved both the show and the movie. AFAIAC, the show and all of Mel Brooks' other works are totally in your face, so I wasn't put off by the film in any way. Moreover, I think it does a beautiful job of preserving the spirit of the show and the original performances as closely as any film can. Re. Susan Stroman, I think she did a great job of directing the show in the style of old movie musicals.
     
  10. jonathan_govols

    jonathan_govols Stunt Coordinator

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    I love this movie. I wasn't a fan of the original film, but that didn't keep me from having a blast watching this film. I'm not even a fan of musicals, but the songs here were fantastic and hillarious. Excellent job, I wish I had seen this in the theater.
     
  11. Thomas T

    Thomas T Cinematographer

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    Charges of "in your face" are perplexing to me. Have they SEEN the original The Producers, Zero Mostel's and Gene Wilder's performances are so "in your face", I swear I can smell their breath! Whichever way you look at it, The Producers is a farce and there's very little subtlety in farce and I doubt the film would work with more subdued performances.
     
  12. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    I'm gonna have to at least rent this. [​IMG] (If it were a better disc, I'd probably just buy it. Maybe the Blu-Ray will look nicer. . .)
     
  13. GerardoHP

    GerardoHP Supporting Actor

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    (If it were a better disc, I'd probably just buy it. Maybe the Blu-Ray will look nicer. . .)



    What do you mean "if it were a better disc"? It's a great disc, it looks gorgeous with colors that pop and has some fun extras. I've watched it a few times already.
     
  14. Erik_H

    Erik_H Stunt Coordinator

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    In his pan of the film, A.O. Scott of the NY Times complained about the tight framing, particularly in the scenes with Uma Thurman---so this does not appear to be a DVD transfer issue.

    I saw the original stage company with Lane and Broderick six times---one of the most entertaining shows that I have ever seen on Broadway. I enjoyed the film, despite the staginess and overall lack of inspiration in adapting the stage version to film. The outtakes on the DVD were a fun reminder as to how Lane and Broderick would deviate from the script on stage---frequently to side-splitting effect.
     
  15. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    I've heard enough complaints about the video quality to make me wait for the eventual HD version to add it to my collection, but I'll rent or borrow it before then to check it out.
     
  16. jonathan_govols

    jonathan_govols Stunt Coordinator

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    I completely agree. I think the original was much more in your face and I found it to be less humorous than it thinks it is.
     
  17. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    I've been hesitating to comment on this DVD because my feelings are mixed. I really enjoyed the film in the theater (I did NOT see it on Broadway, but own the "Recording the Producers" DVD) and am fine with the DVD presentation...but I think Erik put it well about a 'lack of inspiration" in adapting the musical for film. I think Susan Stroman was the wrong choice as director. While she apparently knew what she was doing in helping Brooks stage the musical for the theater...her film direction leaves an awful lot to be desired. The whole look of the film seems rather flat. Camera shots and angles were fairly unimaginative. I think it is the material and performances which carry the day.

    Brooks could have retained Stroman as choregrapher or "Creative director" and hired an accomplished film director and maybe would have yielded a grand slam rather than merely a homerun.

    I especially enjoyed the extras on the DVD...in particular Nathan Lane's performance of King of Broadway.
     
  18. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    An accomplished film director, like, oh, I don't know. . .MEL FREAKING BROOKS?!?!?!
     
  19. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    Well, yeah. That was one of the options running through my mind. I just wanted to give someone else the chance to say it! [​IMG]

    I watched part of The Producers again last night. There's something about that "Got It, Flaunt It" number with Uma/Ulla that I like! Anyway, all the extreme mugging/salivating/leering done by Lane/Broderick as Ulla does her dance was probably boffo on stage. And, while it was "okay" on film (I think "in your face" was the phrase used a few posts back) a director telling them to tone it down just a snudge would have made all the difference in the world.

    The reviews are right. Thurman was the only one who wasn't guilty of over-playing the material.
     

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