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Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Parker Clack, May 14, 2001.
All your views are belong to Crawdaddy!
"* * * * * * * * * * * * *" - Buster Keaton
S&S: 20 films left
Most recent: In the Realm of the Senses
Hi all! I checked out Jazz Singer & On The Waterfront out of my local library & had an enjoyable time watching both.
On The Waterfront I wasn't expecting to like; since I've found that I don't really like Marlon Brando as an actor (blasphemy, I know) mainly because I don't like any of the roles he's played that Ive seen him in. On The Waterfront surprised me somewhat in that I found his character to be actually sympathetic. 4 out 4 for me.
Jazz Singer - Rachel, I understand your problem. I rented a copy at my local video store, kept it for 3 rental periods before I got around to watching it, then popped it in my vcr to discover it was in color. ick. Luckily my local library still had their copy of the original. Very good movie, & just for fun I rewound it a few times just to heal Al Jolson say "Folk's, you ain't heard nothing yet!" After watching Bamboozeled earlier thisyear, I have to admit that the blackface routines bothered me a bit. 3 1/2 out of 4.
That brings me to a grand total of 26 to go. I still have 3 movies from Netflix that I havn't watched yet, maybe I'll get around to them sometime this weekend.
Mutiny On The Bounty (1935) (out of four); #86 on the AFI List.
Overall, this was a good film. It probably would have worked better if some of the romantic angles were totally cut out as it was not that critical to the entire storyline. The inclusion of some romantic scenes was not consistent. For example, the only romantic/family story, which I cared about, was the sailor who was forced to leave his wife and baby. And when he was finally allowed to see them, there was no footage! Just a lot of talk. What the hell?
Does it belong in the Top 100 list? Personally, I don’t think so.
Two to go.
The Manchurian Candidate
I'm glad that I sat down to watch this one again. I first saw it just after it was re-release, after having been withdrawn from circulation for so many years. Much of what I saw, I had forgotten.
Frank Sinatra's (Captain (I think) Ben Marco) and Laurence Harvey's (Sgt. Raymond Shaw) army patrol in Korea is betrayed by their guide and led into an ambush. Rather than being killed, they are incapacitated by blows to the head and heloed to destinations unknown by Anglo (rather than Asian) enemies.
After the credits roll, our heroes are back in the states and it is 2 years later. Shaw, now a civilian, has received the Medal of Honor for saving his patrol from ambush at the cost of only two lives, but it looks like setup, influenced by his Senator step-father (James Gregory) and scheming mother (Angela Lansbury). Senator and Mrs. Iselin, it seems, want to ride the publicity to reelection. Shaw elects (no pun intended) not to return with them to Washington but rather to go word for a columnist (Lloyd Corrigan) who has been very critical of Sen. Iselin. Shaw doesn't even try to mask his contempt for his mother and step-father. When asked what he and his employer have in common by he replies: "We found that we both loath and despise you and Johnny"
Marco, still in the army, awakens every night from a nightmare in which he and the rest of the patrol are taking refuge in meting of a southern garden club. Only the ladies discussing the hydrangeas keep becoming Chinese and Russian military men, politicians,and shrinks. In his dream, Shaw is ordered by one of the ladies/Chinese shrinks to strangle a member of the patrol, which he does, no questions asked. Then, under orders, he shoots another member of the patrol in the head. None of the other American soldiers acts to stop this slaughter. Marco, on waking, wonders about two murders/two dead members of the patrol and gets suspicious.
He goes to his superiors, but they think it's combat fatigue. They don't put any credence in his suspicions until another member of the patrol, Cpl. Alvin Melvin (James Edwards), reports the same dreams. Then the Army comes to realize that Shaw has been brainwashed to become an assassin-in-place, a sleeper agent programmed to kill when directed by his American handlers. But who is the target and who is his handler?
Angela Danbury plays brilliantly against type as Shaw's scheming, controlling mother. She controls his life and that of his step-father, the Senator. At one point, Sen. Iselin says, "I think..." and she snaps at him that thinking is NOT his job and she should leave it to her. Sounds like a funny line, the sort of thing I banter around with my friends and my wife (and she banters back), but in context and with Lansbury's delivery, the line drips with scorn and anger.
On a social note, I found it interesting that Cpl. Melvin was a black man. In 1962, would this have raised eyebrows that a black man was non-com, in a position of authority over the privates in the patrol? I found it interesting and refreshing that Melvin, was just another member of the patrol, no mention or notice was taken of his race. A nice touch by the filmmakers, I thought, was that in his dream, the ladies in the garden club were also black, rather than the white women in Marco's dream. Did Melvin, when brainwashed to see the garden club put comfortable, familiar faces on the ladies, or was his garden club separate-but-equal?
Grade this one an A-. The political overtones, McCarthyism and the Red Menace, are a bit dated (especially since 9-11 and the Russians sincere outpourings of sympathy and support) but they were very real in the 50's, when most of this movie occurs and to a lesser extent in 1962, when the movie was made.
Not seen: 16
Should see again: 13
Ben-Hur *** / ****
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre **1/2
On the Waterfront *1/2
12 to go...
What's the proper length of Birth of a Nation? My wife brought me a copy at the video store last week that was approximately 90 minutes. This didn't seem right, so we returned it to the shelf.
What version is correct?
What was it that you didn't like about ON THE WATERFRONT? I too recently saw this film and loved it. While I am not a great fan of Brando's mumbling version of acting, it was a powerful piece that really moved me.
For that matter, what was wrong with The Treasure of the Sierra Madre?
The Devil & Daniel Webster (1941)
"Cinema is simply letting the audience fill in the blanks." - David Lean.
I'm in. I've been checking films off of my list since the AFI special 3 years ago. I'm down to 17, but my problem is that there's about another 20 that I don't think I saw in OAR, and a few of those I don't plan to re-visit (i.e Forrest Gump and Dances w/ Wolves). There a few that I'm waiting for the DVD (Godfather II, M.A.S.H, and Doctor Zhivago)
Sign me up for the challenge too (although I know it is coming to an end in about 3 months). I have been gradually mixing AFI100 movie rentals with new releases from Netflix (and now RentMyDVD) for the past couple years. I am at 75 watched and 25 to go. However, I will probably not make it to 100 this year since over half of my movies left are not on DVD yet, and I rarely watch movies on VHS or tv anymore. Movies left to see:
On the Waterfront
Treasure of Sierra Madre
Best Years of Our Lives
Birth of a Nation
From Here to Eternity
All Quiet on the Western Front
Rebel without a Cause
Mutiny on the Bounty
Frankenstein (watching this tonight)
Place in the Sun
Bringing up Baby
Yankee Doodle Dandy
> What was it that you didn't like about ON THE WATERFRONT?
In a word: boring.
I just finished Citizen Kane. **** / ****
That gives me half of the top 10. Some of these films I'm just not too interested in. I may not be able to finish all these for quite some time. The only one I have been able to catch off of TV(Rear Window) has a DVD edition that I'd like to pick up(had I not already seen the movie).
I've seen 21/100. Gotta long way to go.
Film Score: B
I've seen so many romantic comedies, that it was highly unfortunate that I got to see this movie so late in time. The dialogue was interesting, the story was pretty good, and the acting performances were excellent (although I have a hard time comprehending Shirley McClaine as an object of desire). But like I said, I've seen many others like it that the experience was kind of spoiled for me. Sure this might've been a pioneer in romantic comedies. I would be willing to go and say that if I had saw this before many other romantic comedies (Sleepless in Seattle, When Harry Met Sally), it would've gotten an A- or an A even.
68 down, 32 to go.
"I don't know, Marge. Trying is the first step towards failure." - Homer J. Simpson
My DVD Collection
I just finished watching The Apartment. Does anyone feel the ending was so, uh, platonic? I mean, I don't think that Shirley Maclaine even kissed anyone in the film. It makes me wonder about her, kind of like Anne Heicht(?), whether she likes guys or not.
They could have done a better job of casting Jack Lemmon's superiors. I had a hard time believing that such ugly, old, men could pick up women like that. I mean, one guy looked almost 70 years old.
I've got to get in a word of defense for "The Apartment". This is easily in my top 5 on the entire AFI list. I find it flawless in every respect including casting and the final scene is considered one of the most famous endings in film history. "Shut up and Deal" is easily as good as "Nobody's Perfect" from Wilder's masterpiece "Some Like it Hot". Sorry if I'm ranting.
Here's my faves off of the list so far.
1. Wizard of Oz
2. Rear Window
3. The Apartment
4. Streetcar Named Desire
5. Some Like It Hot
17 to Go!!!
I too want to defend the Apartment. It's writing is far more clever than most other 'romantic comedies', the acting and direction are great. This movie reflects a different time in America where men could treat women thusly, and women dated men who treated them that way, so I don't see any problem with the casting, maybe just the modern eyes we view the interactions through.
13-time NBA world champion Lakers: 1949, 1950, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1972, 1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988, 2000, 2001
george kaplan says
[Edited last by Scott Dill on September 29, 2001 at 09:36 AM]
[Edited last by Scott Dill on September 29, 2001 at 09:37 AM]