Edward Burns Question

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Derek U, Dec 8, 2002.

  1. Derek U

    Derek U Stunt Coordinator

    Sep 2, 2001
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    After years of catching a little bit here, a little bit there, I finally saw "She's The One" in it's entirety last night and was blown away. I absolutely loved this film and must have it in my collection. The thing is, do I just buy the single disc, or the "Stories From Long Island" box set. I haven't seen the other two films, but I here both are really great. I am also a senior film major in college who loves studying all kinds of films. What to do? What to do?

  2. Paul_D

    Paul_D Cinematographer

    Jul 28, 2001
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    I can help you Derek. [​IMG]
    I saw She's the One in the theater and was also blown away. I loved how intimately the story and characters are portrayed, and think there's some top-notch performances by all the key players. As a result, I picked up The Brothers McMullen on VHS. Great little film. Very low key, and very rough around the edges, but it has a very similar tone to StO, and comes recommended. The third film in the "Stories from Long Island" Box Set is No Looking Back - a critical and commercial disaster. Unlike the first two films in the Long Island Trilogy, it isn't a comedy, and the story is so low key that it almost sinks beneath sea-level, but despite that, its still a very watchable film. Also, despite the differences in tone, it works much better as part of the trilogy than it does as a stand-alone film.
    The 3 discs all come with a commentary from Burns, and I've listened to them all through. Burns is a compelling individual, if only because all of the tracks shed light on how he was able to make the films so cheaply by (e.g.) not applying for a permit here, stealing this shot there etc. It's becoming a cliched term, but I'll say it anyway: 'Film school in a box!' [​IMG]
    The transfers are all decent. StO and NLB look great! TBM, such a low budget film, doesn't look as good, but is certainly a great deal better than the VHS copy I had! The sound mixes are all as good as you could hope to find in films of the budget/genre these slot into.
    For me, StO is the best of his 4 films, because it strikes the balance between drama and comedy so deftly, while the others favor one or the other. But the box set is definitely a worthy purchase. Enjoy!
  3. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

    Jan 18, 1999
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    I was in a similar boat: I saw SHE's THE ONE and loved it, had heard good things about Brothers McMullen- and finally decided to buy the boxed set.

    I will say as a film student- you'd probably be better off with all 3- as McMullen is a good lesson in indie filmmaking- but beyond that I don't think there is much appeal. There are a lot of "what not to do" examples- and often shot selection and framing is so poor it serves as a great example of some of the basic film elements of "big budget" pictures we usually take for granted.

    McMullen is very similar in tone to She's The One-- in fact it's so close that it seem She's the One is a quasi-remake of McMullen (as studios tend to do- snatch up a hot "indie" director and ask him to remake the same film for the rest of his life).

    I thought NO LOOKING BACK was horrid. It's also included in Ebert's collection of horrible reviews ("I hated, Hated, Hated this movie"). I really think that sitting through it more than once is unlikely (although it's fun to inflict on friends... let them see SHE'S THE ONE and then MCMULLEN and then slap them with No Looking Back).

    Really- I think having the collection is worthwhile- but don't expect to get more than 1 watch per year out of the other two.

  4. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator

    Jun 30, 1999
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    If you enjoy Edward Burns' cheapo filmmaking, also check out "Sidewalks of New York" as he employs guerilla-style camera work in that film (allowing jump cuts to save on editing and giving it a documentary looks to it).
  5. Elizabeth S

    Elizabeth S Producer

    May 9, 2001
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    Real Name:
    Elizabeth S
    I've seen all of Burns' films in the order of release, and "The Brothers McMullen" is still my favorite. Really like "Sidewalks of New York", which isn't in the box set. I'm not too fond of "She's the One", and lesser so of "No Looking Back", though I think Jon Bon Jovi does a nice job, and I wouldn't mind giving both of them a second look. All are definitely worth seeing, though "McMullen" would probably be the only one I'd keep returning to from the box set.

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