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Bell Book and Candle Blu-ray Review



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#21 of 77 JohnMor

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Posted April 16 2012 - 02:23 PM

Have mine on order.  Can't wait to receive it.  Always been charmed by this film.
Hoping Sony will allow Twilight Time to put out a blu of their sole Doris Day title, It Happened to Jane, which was also directed by Quine and co-starred Jack Lemmon and Ernie Kovacs, with a score by George Duning.  Sweet, funny, totally underrated film. 


#22 of 77 darkrock17

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Posted April 16 2012 - 03:32 PM

Didn't Bewitched come from this or was that something else?

Bewitched was inspired from Bell Book And Candle. Why are all these Twilight Time releases, so expensive? $35 for a Blu-ray, for that I could get a DVD and a Blu-ray, maybe even more. I know it's limited release and all, but make the prices more realistic, its not like these releases are big "Collector Editions" ala WB.

#23 of 77 ajabrams

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Posted April 16 2012 - 04:15 PM

According to a statement made by the creator of TV's BEWITCHED, it was both BELL BOOK AND CANDLE and the wonderful 1942 film, I MARRIED A WITCH that were his inspirations.

#24 of 77 rsmithjr

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Posted April 16 2012 - 04:29 PM

I too love Bell Book and Candle and though I'm usually pretty savvy, I also would appreciate a bit of elucidation on the gay subtext, which I missed completely. I guess Jack Lemon's character is totally fey, and he, like Kim, might fancy Jimmy Stewart, but that's the only thing I can think of ..... cheers

Keeping in mind the cultural stereotypes of the 1950's, simply replace the terms "warlock/witch" by "gay/lesbian". There is no explicit homoerotic content in the film, it is simply an analogy, but a very powerful one.

#25 of 77 Robert Crawford

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Posted April 16 2012 - 09:55 PM



Originally Posted by rsmithjr 


Keeping in mind the cultural stereotypes of the 1950's, simply replace the terms "warlock/witch" by "gay/lesbian".
There is no explicit homoerotic content in the film, it is simply an analogy, but a very powerful one.



I think some are searching for something that's not there.



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#26 of 77 Mark B

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Posted April 17 2012 - 12:03 AM

Yet, there is another interpretation. John Van Druten was gay, most famous for his play I Am a Camera, which became Cabaret. But, in Open Secret, David Ehrenstein notes that Bell, Book and Candle is his gayest work. "No one with any degree of familiarity with post WWII Greenwich Village will have any trouble seeing the "witches" and "warlocks" of this romantic fantasy for the gays and lesbians they really are, even in the midst of a purely heterosexual main plot." So, there are three ways of watching this glamorous product of the twilight of the Hollywood studio era. Uncritically, enjoying the superb comic performances and exquisite production design, as a pre-feminist cautionary tale, or with an intriguing subtext the author slipped magically through the Hollywood Production Code. http://www.moviediva...lBookCandle.htm

#27 of 77 rsmithjr

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Posted April 17 2012 - 03:17 AM

I think some are searching for something that's not there.

See http://www.afterelto.../8/maupin2.html for some notes from Armistead Maupin on this issue. The analogy is apparently deliberate in the original play and also certainly apparent on the screen.

#28 of 77 Mark Walker

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Posted April 17 2012 - 04:28 AM

See http://www.afterelto.../8/maupin2.html for some notes from Armistead Maupin on this issue. The analogy is apparently deliberate in the original play and also certainly apparent on the screen.

That did not take much searching. :) Let's see: folks who have their own clubs. They have their own subculture with it own's unique qualities. They can be among you and you don't even know it. Others (circa 1950s) are frightened of them, demonize them, and alleged subject "experts" write hokey, ignorance-filled books about them. Gee, I wonder which minority group that might be? ;)

Paramount, please release DRAGONSLAYER on Blu-ray

Dragonslayer_1981HTF_zps4e370848.jpg

 

 

Vermithrax Pejorative deserves to be seen in high-def.


#29 of 77 Johnny Angell

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Posted April 17 2012 - 05:04 AM

:)

That did not take much searching. :) Let's see: folks who have their own clubs. They have their own subculture with it own's unique qualities. They can be among you and you don't even know it. Others (circa 1950s) are frightened of them, demonize them, and alleged subject "experts" write hokey, ignorance-filled books about them. Gee, I wonder which minority group that might be? ;)

Masons? :)
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#30 of 77 Robert Crawford

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Posted April 17 2012 - 05:10 AM



Originally Posted by rsmithjr 


See
http://www.afterelto.../8/maupin2.html
for some notes from Armistead Maupin on this issue.
The analogy is apparently deliberate in the original play and also certainly apparent on the screen.



I never made the connection and I still don't see it.



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#31 of 77 Richard Gallagher

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Posted April 17 2012 - 12:07 PM



Originally Posted by Ronald Epstein 



Rich Gallagher mentioned the film was shot on location in NYC.

Unfortunately, the location footage is generally just that.  Most of

the majority of the street scenes appear to have been shot on a

studio backlot. Nevertheless, it manages to feel very much like

a New York film.



Correct - the street scenes were shot on a realistic backlot and those are interspersed with real shots of the city. The scene where Stewart throws his hat off the roof of the Flatiron building looks like it was shot early in the morning on a Saturday or Sunday, given the absence of traffic. As you say, it has a real New York feel to it.



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#32 of 77 darkrock17

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Posted April 17 2012 - 12:12 PM

Too bad there's no actual Zodiac Club to vist in New York City.

#33 of 77 JohnMor

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Posted April 17 2012 - 02:35 PM



Originally Posted by darkrock17 

Too bad there's no actual Zodiac Club to vist in New York City.



Maybe there is, but we poor mortals just don't know about it.


#34 of 77 Mark Walker

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Posted April 17 2012 - 04:26 PM

I never made the connection and I still don't see it.

One can love Citizen Kane and know nothing about William Randolph Hearst. :) I think for most gay men who grew up knowing what it felt like to be invisible (anyone born before 1970), who then moved to and urban center to find the secret clubs (back when there was still a free local community call center that gave bar directions) and the whole hidden world that most straights were not privy to, this movie's analogy seems a pretty clear. And then set the movie in Greenwich Village, where Allen Ginsberg and the Beat Generation were hanging out, being free and open about who they were and what they were doing in bed with each other, and there you go.

Paramount, please release DRAGONSLAYER on Blu-ray

Dragonslayer_1981HTF_zps4e370848.jpg

 

 

Vermithrax Pejorative deserves to be seen in high-def.


#35 of 77 Mark B

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Posted April 17 2012 - 10:19 PM

I've always found this to be as obvious a gay parable as Frankenstein and The Wolf Man.

#36 of 77 darkrock17

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Posted April 17 2012 - 11:24 PM

I've always found this to be as obvious a gay parable as Frankenstein and The Wolf Man.

Some people just think too much, Bell Book And Candle is just a romantic-comedy about witchcraft.

#37 of 77 TonyD

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Posted April 18 2012 - 12:51 AM

I've always found this to be as obvious a gay parable as Frankenstein and The Wolf Man.

I think they're a lovely couple. Posted Image
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#38 of 77 Mark Walker

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Posted April 18 2012 - 07:54 AM

Some people just think too much, Bell Book And Candle is just a romantic-comedy about witchcraft.

And sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. But, when the playwright is gay and says the witches are an allegory for homosexuals, being ignorant of that fact doesn't make it not true. This reminds me of chats with friends who saw Fried Green Tomatoes and did not realize that Idgie and Ruth were a lesbian couple. (The novel clearly spells that out.) The film made it so gay folks easily picked up on it, but folks with no gaydar wouldn't be offended. In either case it did not change the fact that they were a lesbian couple whether one was aware of it or not.
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Paramount, please release DRAGONSLAYER on Blu-ray

Dragonslayer_1981HTF_zps4e370848.jpg

 

 

Vermithrax Pejorative deserves to be seen in high-def.


#39 of 77 Robert Crawford

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Posted April 18 2012 - 09:13 AM



Originally Posted by Mark Walker 


And sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
But, when the playwright is gay and says the witches are an allegory for homosexuals,
being ignorant of that fact doesn't make it not true.

This reminds me of chats with friends who saw Fried Green Tomatoes and did not realize that Idgie and Ruth were a lesbian couple.
(The novel clearly spells that out.) The film made it so gay folks easily picked up on it, but folks with no gaydar wouldn't be offended.
In either case it did not change the fact that they were a lesbian couple whether one was aware of it or not.



Once a piece of art is there to be seen by all, it can be anything you want it to be based on how you interpret that art.  It doesn't matter what a playwright or artist intended it to be, as personal interpretation overrides that intention.


Anyway, back to the BRD itself, I'm still waiting for my copy as I ordered it along with The Big Heat and another title.





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#40 of 77 Mark Walker

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Posted April 18 2012 - 04:22 PM

Once a piece of art is there to be seen by all, it can be anything you want it to be based on how you interpret that art.  It doesn't matter what a playwright or artist intended it to be, as personal interpretation overrides that intention. Anyway, back to the BRD itself, I'm still waiting for my copy as I ordered it along with The Big Heat and another title. Crawdaddy

What happened to "I think some are searching for something that's not there." from page 1 of this thread? That contradicts " it can be anything you want it to be based on how you interpret that art..." doesn't it? I, too, am looking forward to The Big Heat! I never thought I would be ordering so many titles from Twilight Time.
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Paramount, please release DRAGONSLAYER on Blu-ray

Dragonslayer_1981HTF_zps4e370848.jpg

 

 

Vermithrax Pejorative deserves to be seen in high-def.






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