Patton

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Tim Glover, Feb 24, 2005.

  1. Tim Glover

    Tim Glover Lead Actor

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    The past several months I've been trying hard to watch all the dvd's I own that I haven't seen yet. Some in that list I've seen them theatrically, but not on dvd. I had around 80 dvds I needed to watch back in September and now have decreased that to 50. [​IMG]

    Finally watched Patton last night. This could go in the software forum because I will touch on the dvd too but really wanted to engage more about the film so here goes...

    I remember seeing Patton as a kid during one of those ABC Sunday Night at the Movies broadcasts. That was the only way I ever saw it. Cut up with commercials and edited.

    Patton is truly a great film and one of the best performances by an actor I've ever seen. I could be wrong but I'm guessing that most of the members here are probably young enough to have not seen this or may not be interested in watching it. Several of my friends are a few years younger than me and I've tried several times to get them to see this with me and they have declined.

    George C. Scott gives an astonishing performance that probably remains as his best work? Film historians can answer that better than I but his performance was sheer greatness. It was so captivating and at the same time, you feel like hating him and then you can't get enough of him. That's hard to pull off, but Scott does it. Almost makes it look easy.

    Scott's Patton does genius work by balancing the act of avoiding being too over the top and looking comical & still larger than life. [​IMG]

    The other thing I want to mention is the Jerry Goldsmith's score. This is fantastic. Patton won 8 Academy Awards so surely Best Score was one of them??? Need to check that out. The score really added that patriotic feel when it needed too and helped the film build and sustain momentum when it needed it most. Kudos to Jerry Goldsmith.

    The production was something that looked more modern that the 1971 year would have typically looked like. Sometimes older war films can look cheezy during the battle scenes and Patton looks like a film that was way ahead of it's time in this regard. Looked believable and authentic. Never once did the battle action stuff take me out of the movie experience. Terrific job!

    Just a few minutes about the dvd. I would love to read what Robert Harris and other film restorers say about this dvd. For me, I thought it looked fabulous. Even on my front projector and 106 inch screen. Colors were vibrant and yet not over saturated. Dark scenes, and there weren't many, looked detailed. The textures were rich and full of life.

    Not sure if the film itself had some restoration work prior to the dvd release or what, but the result is fantastic and at times, breathtaking. Sure, there's some moements of film grain etc...but very minor.

    At the end of the film during the credits, it says something about being filmed in Dimension 150. What is that???

    The 5.1 audio mix was also effective without calling attention to itself. Certainly, it served the material well.

    Final thoughts: I realize Patton is no secret to film fans. I know my renewed interest is late considering it was made in 1971 but this film is so well made and acted that I hope the members here will find time to re-visit this treasure on dvd. There's alot of power on the screen when you watch Patton .

    Hopefully, this thread will ignite others to share their thoughts on Patton and maybe Mr. Harris can chime in too.

    Thanks for letting me ramble. :b
     
  2. Raasean Asaad

    Raasean Asaad Supporting Actor

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    Well I'm 34 and easily count Patton and George C. Scott's performances as magnificent. I have wished for a multi-super-mega edition of this movie for years and its one of the films that started my passion for period war films. Glad you've finally seen it.[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  3. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Unfortunately, it didn't win the award instead "Love Story" won best score.

    During its initial theatrical run, I watched Patton 3 times because it thrilled me to no end.
     
  4. Stephen_L

    Stephen_L Supporting Actor

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    Patton is a triumphal work containing one of the best acting performances ever. What elevates the film is that it celebrates the complexity of the character, never trying to make him cuddly or accessible. I love the moment where after Patton rants that he will achieve an objective or 'may no man come back alive!' and is quietly contradicted by his aide. "Sir, sometimes the men can't tell when you're acting or not" and Patton replies "It's not important for them to know. It's only important for me to know"

    One last kudo to George C. Scott. He was one of the few actors that could portray a larger than life character and not look silly. Charlton Heston managed that too; the only modern actor I can think of with the same gift is Russell Crowe (who can also ace the stories of small men as well)
     
  5. Gary Seven

    Gary Seven Grand Poo Pah

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    I saw this in the theater as a kid. Loved it.

    .... Now I feel old...
     
  6. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Producer

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    I saw this in the theater in a past life.

    (cue horns echoing into the distance...waddaba waddaba waddaba waddaba...)
     
  7. Tim Glover

    Tim Glover Lead Actor

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    Didn't know Love Story won for Best Score. Oh well, Goldsmiths work here is still remarkable.

    I didn't mean to imply that younger members would not appreciate Patton or wouldn't want to see it. :b I'm certainly no spring chicken @41 and it took me this long to see it in it's entirety.

    Great remark Stephen...

    So true. There were times I wanted to chuckle at one of Patton's lines, but then the reality of "this is really how he felt" jolt kicked in. Terrific performance.
     
  8. Tim Glover

    Tim Glover Lead Actor

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    Just checked oscar.com and here's the list of wins for Patton from the Academy.

    Best Actor...George C. Scott (Mr. Scott refused the award)
    Art Direction
    Directing...Franklin J. Schaffner
    Film Editing...Hugh Fowler
    Best Picture...Frank McCarthy, Producer
    Sound...Douglous Williams, Don Bassman
    Writing(Story & Screenplay-based on factual material or material not previously published or produced)...Frances Ford Coppola, Edmund H. North.

    Had no idea Coppola wrote this! Wow. [​IMG]
     
  9. Alex-C

    Alex-C Screenwriter

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    This movie won the best picture Oscar the year I was born and it was a preorder for me.

    Agree with all the comments. Great performance, great production, lots of historical context which is way too lacking these days.

    One of the best war movies ever made !

    Isn't it now sold as a single disc ? I have the 2 disc version but I thought I saw it in a store as a single disc. Maybe they packed it all in to 1 disc.
     
  10. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    I agree with all the praise for this film. One of the great performances EVER. I was lucky enough to see it in all its 70 mm glory at the Academy theater. The DVD is nice (but does have EE), but doesn't approach the film experience.
     
  11. Paul Linfesty

    Paul Linfesty Stunt Coordinator

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    I think this credit is actually shown during the opening credits.


    Dimension 150 (or D-150, as it was sometimes called) was a 65mm produced, 70mm projected process that showed on a 120 degree screen. It was akin to the original Todd-AO. Patton was the second (and last) film to being shot in the process (the first was The Bible). The death of D-150 was probably attributable to the rapid death of 65mm photography that year (Airport, Song of Norway, Ryan's Daughter). The 70mm roadshow was dying out, and Panavision had introduced their newer lightweight 35mm cameras that became popular.
     
  12. Pat Frank

    Pat Frank Stunt Coordinator

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    In answer to the question, Dimension 150 was, as I understand it, a curved-screen approach to widescreen, Panavision-type movies. I believe there was only one other major Dimension 150 release ("The Bible", according to IMDB, but this doesn't ring right to me).

    It's pretty apparent that Schaffner and Koenekamp (the director and DP) were really playing up that curvature, as many of scenes were shot using wide-angle lenses (good examples include the opening titles, and that lovely sequence where he walks alongside the cart bearing the body of his dead assistant). The combination of wide-angle shooting and Goldsmith's score really make the whole thing rather haunting. Not surprisingly, Schaffner won and Oscar and Koenekamp and Golfsmith were nom'd.

    I've only had the chance to see a very few movies on the giant curved screens that were intended for this approach. They had one in Atlanta when I was growing up at a place called the New Columbia theater. I remember seeing 2001 and 2010 in a double feature in 1984 when 2010 was released. The sequence with the Discovering turning end over end was heart-stopping on that monstrous screen.

    But as sometimes happens with IMAX films shown in Omnimax theaters, these movies weren't shot for that type of screen, and therefore looked funky in some scenes (2010 is only 1.85:1, for example, and was terribly stretched). Patton, on the other hand, was actually shot for that curvature, and that may be why the wide angle lens was used (I've never been quite clear on this point, but I think it's a valid assumption -- the suggestion being that if you saw those scenes on the curved screen, the eliptical warping from the wide angle lens would be gone).

    I digress, but there's some good info out there around the Internet in various places about this.

    (Edit: I see Paul beat me to the punch with some excellent comments, but I've got a few notes above that may have some value so I'll leave my message intact.)
     
  13. Lynda-Marie

    Lynda-Marie Supporting Actor

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    No doubts, Scott WAS Patton for the duration of this film.

    My favorite part HAS to be the speech at the beginning, and the first line of that speech:

    "Now I want you to remember, that no bastard EVER won a war, by dying for his country. He won it, by making the OTHER poor dumb bastard die for his country!"

    The funniest part of all of this was that Patton was even more profane in his daily speech patterns than was portrayed in this film, because the studio powers that be were afraid of offending people.

    I have read the text of that speech as Patton actually gave it, and he was every bit as colorful, and more, as you saw on the screen.

    I think the best review I ever read of it was by a fellow who had served under Patton, and said he thought Scott's performance was so spot on that he was half expecting Patton to look down into the audience and tell him that his hair was too *$%#*&@ long.
     
  14. Dave Farley

    Dave Farley Second Unit

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    The 2-disc set is out of print. The single disc is missing the making of Patton documentary and the isolated Goldsmith score.
     
  15. ChuckSolo

    ChuckSolo Screenwriter

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    George C. Scott's refused Oscar used to be on display at the Patton Museum at Fort Knox, Kentucky. My brother saw it when he trained there to be a National Guardsman.

    I agree, George C. Scott's performance as GSP Jr. is probably one of the finest of all time. Right up there with Marlon Brando's rendition of Vito Corleone.[​IMG]
     
  16. Tim Glover

    Tim Glover Lead Actor

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    Thanks Pat & Paul for the Dimension 150 info. [​IMG] And thanks to everyone for putting their thoughts in too. [​IMG]

    I missed out on getting the 2 Disc SE too. Just have the single disc Fox War Classic version.
     
  17. Paul Linfesty

    Paul Linfesty Stunt Coordinator

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    Just for the record, 2010 was filmed in anamorphic Panavision (2.4). It was, however, blown up to 70mm (2.2) for many engagements.
     
  18. Ashley Seymour

    Ashley Seymour Supporting Actor

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    I was stationed on Okinawa in 1970 and had just finished reading the book PATTON by Ladislav Farago when the movie came out - also read and saw the Godfather the same way. The base theatre was very nice and I logged a lot of hours there. The print was pristine and when you hear people say you have to see it on the big screen to get the full effect - they are not wrong.

    I always thought the movie was less a war film and more the story of a dynamic individual - who happened to be a larger than life military leader. The battle scenes were insome regards a little better than most - the Spaniard/German soldiers worked cheap on an expansive battlefield - but the lack of Sherman tanks was too much to accept. Kelly's Heroes did a much better job on depicting small unit actions.

    The politics and bickering between and amoung the generals was the best aspect. You don't get to be a larger than life general without a larger than life ego.
     
  19. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Producer
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    I have the two disc edition of PATTON. A great movie, but it could definitely be improved by remastering it. There is some bad haloing in the present edition. Unfortunately, a remastered edition would probably never have the isolated score like the two disc set does.
     
  20. Stephen-R

    Stephen-R Agent

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    I watch "Patton" at least once a year. My 14 year old daughter actually watched it with me and Liked it.

    She was studying WWII at the time in school. This is one of the many WWII movies I watched it with my Father when I was younger. My Father could tell me what was real and what was not since he was one of the many that fought in that war.
     

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