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The Great March HTF Historical Drama/Epic Challenge

Discussion in 'Movies' started by JohnRice, Feb 16, 2008.

  1. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    The challenge is now officially open!!


    We're on the downswing of February and I figured it was time to send out the warning for the March Historical Drama/Epic Challenge.

    The idea is similar to other challenges. Watch at least 13 qualifying films, preferably with at least 7 first time viewings, then come here and post your opinions/ratings.


    There are two qualifiers...

    1) The "Historical Drama" Qualification - Films which take place in an accurate historical setting, at least 50 years prior to the date the film was produced. These do not have to be actual, historical stories. Just set in a realistic time period.

    or

    2) The "Epic" Qualification - Films with a running time of at least 160 minutes.


    Examples...

    The Magnificent Ambersons - NO, since the primary time period is only 20+ years prior to the production of the film.

    Shakespeare in Love - Yes

    Titus - NO, under the Historical qualification (not realistic time period) but YES under the Epic qualification.

    A Room with a View - Yes.

    LOTR movies - Oh, if you have to (under the Epic qualification), but the idea is to branch out.


    In the spirit of the Historical Drama concept, I'd like to encourage participants to make a particular effort to seek out literary adaptations and stretch beyond their ordinary viewing habits. Everyone on earth has seen Lawrence of Arabia, so instead, venture into Doctor Zhivago or Ryan's Daughter. Pick a certain author and have a mini festival. You get the idea.


    The challenge will run the month of March. Admission is limited (not really), so sign up early, subscribe to this thread and visit often.



    __________________________________________________ ___________

    My List - First time viewings in blue. Ratings out of
    Perceptions are interesting. I read over and over how this film still glorifies James, though less than previous ones, and what a sleazy scumbag Ford is. To me, James comes across as the charismatic, repugnant individual he most likely was, and the type of person I have learned to avoid like the plague. Little more than a bullying, intimidating punk who not only believes he is entitled to commit the crimes he does, but that others should admire him for them. Ford is just someone who gets pushed around alot and has delusions of grandeur.

    I admire the deliberate nature of this film, but in the end I think it is just too long. It really doesn't need almost 160 minutes to get the story and mood across. I also tend to think people take the full film title too literally. I sense more than a slight irony to it.
     
  2. Holadem

    Holadem Well-Known Member

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    Eh. Why not. Finally an interesting month-long challenge...

    In like Flynn. Been looking to checkout that notoriously lengthy War and Peace adaptation for a while now.

    --
    H
     
  3. Greg Layton

    Greg Layton Well-Known Member

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    I'm in. Hopefully we can have a better showing than January when we only made it through 8 Film Noirs.

    Here's our list:

    03/06/08 - Rio Bravo (1959) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    03/07/08 - The Bridge over the River Kwai (1957) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    03/11/08 - The Wild Bunch (1969) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  4. SteveGon

    SteveGon Well-Known Member

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    WTF? We can't watch LOTR? Screw it, I'm O-U-T!!! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    ...just kidding. Already got some movies lined up. [​IMG]


    My list:

    Aguirre, The Wrath of God ****
    Angels and Insects ***[​IMG]
    The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford ***
    Atonement ***
    Berlin Alexanderplatz ***[​IMG]
    1860 ***
    Gettysburg ***[​IMG]
    Hiroshima ***
    The Lady and the Duke ***
    Love in the Time of Cholera ***
    Mansfield Park ***
    Maria Marten ***
    The Naked Prey ***[​IMG]
    The Other Conquest ***
    Regeneration ***
    Rome Against Rome **
    The Round-Up ***[​IMG]
    Sharpe's Rifles ***
    Troy ***

    Bolded titles are first viewings.

    Tally: 19
     
  5. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp
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    I have no idea what to watch, but I'll give it a shot. CAn I count the endless stream of westerns in the "Ford At Fox" set?

    Just kidding. [​IMG] This well be my placeholder.

    FINAL TALLY, FIRST TIMERS IN BLUE

    01 - 03/01 - WEE WILLIE WINKLE 3.5/5
    02 - 03/02 - YOUNG MR. LINCOLN 4/5
    03 - 03/09 - AMERICAN GANGSTER 3.5/5
    04 - 03/21 - MY DARLING CLEMINTINE 4.5/5
    05 - 03/21 - THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD 4.5/5
     
  6. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Well-Known Member

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    I’m not sure if I’ll be able to watch seven new ones (depends on TCM & IFC) schedules), but I’m in otherwise.
     
  7. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    Normally it would be difficult for me as well, but thanks to some recent releases (Assassination of Jesse James; Lust, Caution; Becoming Jane; American Gangster extended; Elizabeth, The Golden Years) I might be able to round up seven new viewings.
     
  8. PatW

    PatW Well-Known Member

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    I'll also have difficulty coming up with 7 new ones. Damn, I watched American Gangster already. I didn't think it qualified but of course it does under the epic qualification. I have quite a few in my collection that I can watch. Unfortunately they've all been seen before.
     
  9. Holadem

    Holadem Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    (Lew is back)

    --
    H
     
  10. Chucky P

    Chucky P Well-Known Member

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    First Time Viewings In BOLD
    March 3
    1. Doctor Zhivago (1965) (4.5/5)
    2. Yojimbo (1961) (5/5)
    March 8
    3. The Sign of the Cross (1932) (3.5/5)
    4. The Crusades (1935) (3/5)
    March 16
    5. Sanjuro (1962) (5/5)
    6. A Fistfull Of Dollars (1964) (4/5)
    March 17
    7. For a Few Dollars More (1965) 4.5/5
    March 22
    8. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) (5/5)
    March 23
    9. The Great Escape (1963) (5/5)
    March 27
    10. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) (5/5)
    March 29
    11. Duck, You Sucker (1971) (4.5/5)
    March 30
    12. Becket (1964) (5/5)
    March 31
    13. The Lion In Winter (1968) (5/5)
     
  11. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Well-Known Member

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    And still enjoying life.

    Thanks Holadem
     
  12. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    Whoa! No kidding. I had no idea. No posts before yesterday for over a year. I'm glad you came back solely to participate in my challenge.
     
  13. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    March is almost here. Also, there have been quite a few Historical Dramas released in recent weeks. Silk is one this week, which looks interesting.

    I plan on doing a few themed mini-marathons, including Jane Austen, Thomas Hardy and possibly to celebrate my finally getting the Anthology, Sergio Leone.
     
  14. Brad Porter

    Brad Porter Well-Known Member

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    Technically, just watching some of the things I already have recorded on TiVo should get me more than halfway there.

    Cleopatra (1963) (recording was pan and scan - didn't watch it)
    Garden of Evil (1954) (period + 1st time viewing)
    The Bravados (1958) (period + 1st time viewing)
    The New World (2005) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    The Painted Veil (2006) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    3:10 to Yuma (1957) (period + 1st time viewing)
    The Wild Bunch (1969) (period)
    Curse of the Golden Flower (2006) (period + 1st time viewing)

    But it feels like cheating to have 4 westerns on that list. I won't even try to ask if I can finally watch the made for TV mini-series Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee and Comanche Moon and have them count. Too bad I watched Gods and Generals last month (for multiple reasons). It would have been worth triple for me.

    (Post Edited to add the following information)

    Scanning ahead for the month I've also scheduled these qualifying films to record:

    Patton (just in case I need one more film to clear the qualifying number, plus I want to see the HD version)
    Exodus (1960)
    Ben Hur (1959) (I'm hesitant to watch this off of the TCM broadcast and I'll probably wait to see it in HD sometime)
    The Wind and the Lion (1975)
    Major Dundee (1965)
    Bandidas (2006)
    Ask The Dust (2006)
    The Great Race (1965)
    Restoration (1995)

    And I scheduled The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies (1963) even though it doesn't qualify for this challenge. It has to be considered an epic just based upon the time it takes to type the title.

    Brad
     
  15. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Well-Known Member

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    Five-star rating; first viewings in BOLD.
    1. The Portrait of a Lady (1996) [​IMG][​IMG]
    2. The Good, the Bad & the Ugly (1966) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    3. Nicholas Nickleby (2002) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    4. The Longest Day (1962) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    5. Giant (1956) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    6. Being Julia (2004) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    7. U-571 (2000) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    8. Glory (2000) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    9. The Lion in Winter (1968) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    10. Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    11. Cobra Verde (1988) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    12. Nosferatu: Phantom der Nacht (1979) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    13. Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning (2004) [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  16. Holadem

    Holadem Well-Known Member

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    Can't deal with Netflix right now (long story).

    Quo Vadis (DVRed from TCM -- is there a DVD yet?) will be first. I am pretty excited about this, it's a childhood fav that I've not seen in 20 years, I hope it holds up.

    --
    H
     
  17. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    Since it's Friday, and today (February 29) doesn't actually exist and we are all currently in the Twilight Zone, I am declaring this challenge officially open.
     
  18. PatW

    PatW Well-Known Member

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    Historical Drama/Epic Challenge - 41 watched

    1st. time viewings in bold; reviews out of 5 stars

    3/1 The Fall of the Roman Empire (1964) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/1 Mountains of the Moon (1990) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/2 Green Dolphin Street (1947) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/3 Pride and Prejudice (2005) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/3 Becoming Jane (2007) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/4 Aviator (2004) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/5 Captain Kidd (1945) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/5 Goya's Ghosts (2006) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/6 Beowulf & Grendel (2005) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/6 Emma (1996) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/7 Finding Neverland (2004) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/7 The Right Stuff (2004) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/8 A Man For All Seasons (1965) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/8 Khartoum (1966) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/9 Tea with Mussolini (1999) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/9 Vanity Fair ( 2004) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/10 The Assassination of Jessie James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/10 The Prestige (2006) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/10 The Romance of Rosy Ridge (1947) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/11 Immortal Beloved (1994) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/12 The Colossus of Rhodes (1961) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/14 Amistad (1997) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/14 Marie Antoinette ( 1938) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/15 Braveheart (1995) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/16 Rio Grande (1950) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/16 Man in the Iron Mask (1998) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/16 The Pony Soldier (1952) [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/17 Vera Drake (2004) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/18 The Last Legion (2007) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/18 Stage Beauty (2004) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/19 Silk (2007) [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/19 Secret Garden (1993) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/20 Comancheros (1961) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/20 Kingdom of Heaven (2005) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/21 Quest for Fire (1981) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/23 Gallipoli (1981) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/27 Damn the Defiant (1962) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/28 Atonement (2007) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/28 The Saddest Music in the World (2003) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/30 Love at the Time of Cholera (2007) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    3/31 The Strange Woman (1946) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  19. PatW

    PatW Well-Known Member

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    The Fall of the Roman Empire (1964) [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    An interesting movie that looks at the beginning of the end of a once great empire. This is a very slow paced movie at times but does take its time to build its characters. James Mason, Alec Guiness and especially Christopher Plummer are all excellent here. I thought Plummer was alot better in this role than Phoenix in Gladiator. He reminded me alot of Peter Ustinov's performance as Nero, being just slightly less deliciously evil. Stephen Boyd was fine in Ben Hur but here he is bland and boring. Russell Crowe in a similar role in Gladiator made that movie. Thankfully Boyd was surrounded by much better actors. Omar Sharif's role was nothing more than a cameo and this fine actor's talents were wasted here. This movie bears alot of similarity to Gladiator which I'm sure borrowed heavily here.
    The sets were gorgeous and the battle scenes outstanding. It's amazing what can be accomplished without CGI. The music was cloying at times and in a couple of instances didn't seem to fit the scene. Overall, it was a satisfying movie if overlong at times.
     
  20. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    Amazing Grace - [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Story behind William Wilberforce, the end of slavery in England (though certainly not British slave labor elsewhere) the genesis of the Psalm used as the words for the famous song and so on. Not nearly as good a film as it should have been since it glosses over a lot of topics and the narrative is inconsistent, but excellent cast. The best moment in the film is actually just prior to the closing credits as the title song is performed in all its glory. Probably worth mentioning that the actual music typically associated with Amazing Grace pre-dates the words by several centuries and is a traditional tune of Irish or Scottish origin.
     

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