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RobertMG

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Yes, I mean I think the list of pictures now that they would feel the need to add a contextual introduction to is huge. So, the simplification of it would be to just put a standard disclaimer in front of every picture made prior to the year 2000.

I have not seen any episodes of Reframed so I can't comment on what they are doing or saying on the show. The good is nobody is banning any of these pictures. They are now showing them with added context. It does seem like this is something people would not need, as why would they not grasp these pictures were made in a different time when there were different prevailing attitudes.

However, we've had a massive explosion of open racism in the United States since 2016. It does not appear to be getting better but growing worse and so I think a lot of folks want to see "clarification" now that this is not something we tolerate but that we, as a nation and people, are trying to get past. If we can.

I am fine with them doing this if it makes people feel better and/or opens them up more to the films. Not too long ago I listened to a podcast where a bunch of young guys discussed The Searchers. I honestly had no idea what was coming when I put it on. They absolutely destroyed the picture. They felt it was as "offensive" as any Nazi propaganda film ever made. There was the racism, the treatment of women, Ethan Edwards (Wayne) was a horrible character, Wayne himself personally was a horrible human being, it went on an on. They basically appeared to feel that Wayne pictures in general should be pulled from circulation as he should just not be supported in any way.

Honestly, in the moment I was kind of shocked. Then I thought about it and the truth was it seemed like these guys had little context with respect to the picture and when it was made and the time it was set in. I'm sure that these guys are not just an anomaly. I would guess there are many people that feel the way they do.

I recall sitting at a screening of Blazing Saddles probably 8 or 10 years ago. Some people at the screening were truly enraged by the film. There were people walking out. Yelling about the blatant and disgusting racism in the picture and could not believe someone would dare show it.

Again, I was sort of shocked in the moment. These people did not at all understand the comedy or what Mel Brooks was doing. They literally took the picture at face value and got offended.

Brooks was not celebrating racism he was brutally making fun of it...but it was satire and the sad fact is, it seems large portions of the population no longer grasp satire. Try to make a list of the satirical films made in the last 20 some years. It won't be much of a list and what there is will be independently funded pictures because large companies won't touch satire with a ten foot pole.

I hate that because I love satire.

When I read about the making of Jungle Cruise I was, well, just floored by all of the things they had to do to make the picture. A central character had to be flipped from male to female. The headhunters could not actually be headhunters but people pretending to be headhunters. Any item that could be seen as "offensive" needed to be scrubbed or reworked into a celebration of a person, gender, or race. A gay character needed to be inserted in the picture but not with any real open reference to the character being gay. All this while trying to stick to the Pirates of the Caribbean formula.

That's not writing a story or script it is just a presentation of a series of rules and restrictions. There is no push to "Go be creative!" it is the opposite of "Follow these rules or we don't make this!"

Problem is you are now handed this same book of rules and restrictions on every big budget picture.

Would they make The Searchers today? Well, probably not the script that Ford shot. It would be adjusted and changed and turned into something else. Would they make Blazing Saddles today? No way. Basically, if they looked at what these pictures were about they would just pass and walk away.

Is that a good or bad development? I guess that's a matter of personal perspective.

Do people need to think about the context when watching a picture? Yes, if they want to understand it. I think the thing is now though that pictures over the last 20 some years have gone overboard to try to explain everything to an audience. You are not supposed to do subtle, you need to make everything so obvious it is written in 40 foot high day glow letters. If you do something an audience member might miss or misunderstand...you are doing it wrong.

They did not do that back then. The central characters could be horrible people with massive flaws but the thought was the audience would understand that...not worship the character. Ethan Edwards is a horrible guy bent on revenge and filled with bloodlust. He wants to kill his niece not save her. To him she is now spoiled by being taken by the Comanche. You could shade things and be subtle.

Now I guess, a lot of people watch it and think "What? They made a racist the hero of this picture! Horrible!"
We all live in our own bubble we live on a community in LI where we as people all get a long with each other - we care for each other we hang out at the Lottery store we all greet each other we do not hate anyone we get along - racism? Look at everyone that ever listened to artists like the GREAT Nat King Cole yet he was NOT allowed to stay in top hotels when he toured, that was racism. Working on my second book and interviewing one of the Straus family who owned Macy's he told us about WWII and how horrified he was to see our black soldiers were not allowed to drink from the same water fountains - but back to film I saw Intruders in the Dust recently and was shocked to hear the N word in the film, same with tv show The Jefferson's using the N word in the 80's
 

Walter Kittel

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I haven't seen any of the Reframed content on TCM so I don't have any opinion on its execution. I think the concept is valid as we live in a constantly evolving society. If it helps younger viewers understand the context of those film as products of their time and culture then I would argue that this is a good thing. Folks can always skip over that content if they don't like it and simply watch the films themselves, so it seems like all parties are being served in one way or another.

The main reason I was posting was due to the concept of Reframed and more contemporary films. I was sort of imagining Tropic Thunder as the subject of a future Reframed episode. I think the film is hilarious, but I do wonder if it could be made today and I suspect not. (I've read that Netflix removed the film from their U.S. library.)

- Walter.
 

Reggie W

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Those people need to take a longer look at that film's ending. Without question it has meaning that Ethan Edwards isn't a hero and is a social outcast which is why he never enters the house like the others. The closing of the door says it all!


I'm with you 100%, Robert and yes, we understand the ending. I think now though, stepping out of our own perspectives and pictures we grew up watching, that ending is probably a bit, or more than a bit ambiguous to younger audiences. Ford beautifully makes his point with the darkness surrounding Ethan and him remaining outside. Many of us here get it, understand that the entire story is a crazy long search driven by Ethan's pure hatred for the Comanche.
 

Robert Crawford

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I'm with you 100%, Robert and yes, we understand the ending. I think now though, stepping out of our own perspectives and pictures we grew up watching, that ending is probably a bit, or more than a bit ambiguous to younger audiences. Ford beautifully makes his point with the darkness surrounding Ethan and him remaining outside. Many of us here get it, understand that the entire story is a crazy long search driven by Ethan's pure hatred for the Comanche.
Reggie,

I watched "The Searchers" many times in my youth before I even got what the true meaning of that closing shot. It wasn't until I was in college back in the 1970's, that the tiny light bulb in my pea brain finally turned on.
 

Reggie W

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We all live in our own bubble we live on a community in LI where we as people all get a long with each other - we care for each other we hang out at the Lottery store we all greet each other we do not hate anyone we get along - racism? Look at everyone that ever listened to artists like the GREAT Nat King Cole yet he was NOT allowed to stay in top hotels when he toured, that was racism. Working on my second book and interviewing one of the Straus family who owned Macy's he told us about WWII and how horrified he was to see our black soldiers were not allowed to drink from the same water fountains - but back to film I saw Intruders in the Dust recently and was shocked to hear the N word in the film, same with tv show The Jefferson's using the N word in the 80's

Yes, I think that it is about more than racism, they basically want to contextualize anything that may offend someone. Due to my age, I grew up with entertainment that was often specifically designed to offend. Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, hell, Redd Foxx and Don Rickles...the idea was you confront people with what offends them, make them laugh or think, and in the end it would bring people together.

Eddie Murphy used to do that gag in the 1980s where he would ask the audience to yell "Nigger!" at him. Then he would make fun of someone in the audience saying "That guy really got into it." pointing someone out or saying that "A brother was just walking in and ran back out the door."

It was funny. It was meant to move us past the whole thing and bring us together. I don't think Murphy would do that gag today. I don't think the confrontation is welcome anymore. People just prefer to step around it but in doing so, they basically don't address the problem. I mean, I think it is good to be offended because generally you learn something, or should, in being offended.

This idea of "Don't offend anyone!" is kind of ridiculous because you can't control and often don't know what offends someone and it is a very wide rage of things.

I've always felt that to be creative everything should be available to you to create. All words, all colors, all shades, all everything in the ways you want to use it to get your point across. There are still people doing this but far fewer of them and in anything meant to be "mainstream" well, this is not part of the process anymore. They want to step around it, which won't make it go away.

If Reframed allows people to discuss it, to talk about it, great.

And one thing I have always loved about New York is the openness, the kindness, the diversity and understanding you encounter there. People are accepting of each other in New York. Neighborhoods are often proud of being a neighborhood. A community of people that look different, sound different, and appreciate those differences and embrace them.

I grew up that way, sadly, I think many people have not.
 

RobertMG

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Yes, I think that it is about more than racism, they basically want to contextualize anything that may offend someone. Due to my age, I grew up with entertainment that was often specifically designed to offend. Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, hell, Redd Foxx and Don Rickles...the idea was you confront people with what offends them, make them laugh or think, and in the end it would bring people together.

Eddie Murphy used to do that gag in the 1980s where he would ask the audience to yell "Nigger!" at him. Then he would make fun of someone in the audience saying "That guy really got into it." pointing someone out or saying that "A brother was just walking in and ran back out the door."

It was funny. It was meant to move us past the whole thing and bring us together. I don't think Murphy would do that gag today. I don't think the confrontation is welcome anymore. People just prefer to step around it but in doing so, they basically don't address the problem. I mean, I think it is good to be offended because generally you learn something, or should, in being offended.

This idea of "Don't offend anyone!" is kind of ridiculous because you can't control and often don't know what offends someone and it is a very wide rage of things.

I've always felt that to be creative everything should be available to you to create. All words, all colors, all shades, all everything in the ways you want to use it to get your point across. There are still people doing this but far fewer of them and in anything meant to be "mainstream" well, this is not part of the process anymore. They want to step around it, which won't make it go away.

If Reframed allows people to discuss it, to talk about it, great.

And one thing I have always loved about New York is the openness, the kindness, the diversity and understanding you encounter there. People are accepting of each other in New York. Neighborhoods are often proud of being a neighborhood. A community of people that look different, sound different, and appreciate those differences and embrace them.

I grew up that way, sadly, I think many people have not.
Wonder if Don Rickles would be acceptable today? My now deceased neighbor actually went to school with him - Newtown High School - he always showed us the class pic of them in school! Love your post!
 

Mysto

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I dislike re-framing (in general not as a title series) for many different reasons that I will not discuss on this forum but I get what is going on at TCM. If they do not become proactive they will be forced to stop showing many movies. In the current culture just about every classic movie offends somebody and the current approach is to ban them. By showing "context" perhaps they will be allowed to continue showing these great films and without "editing" as the D is doing.
 

Malcolm R

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This idea of "Don't offend anyone!" is kind of ridiculous because you can't control and often don't know what offends someone and it is a very wide rage of things.
Plus in the age of social media, many people actively look for things to be offended about, regardless of the context, so they can take to Twitter or Facebook and start a firestorm. Back in the day, if you wanted to complain about something being offensive, you had to do it face-to-face or pick up the phone and call another person, or maybe write a letter to the editor that would be seen by a few thousand in bigger cities. Now with social media, you can blast a message to millions in seconds, and they can forward it to millions more.
 

TravisR

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I don't understand why any of you guys seem to worry so much about what others have to say about the movies you like. Do you really think the pathetic loser at Buzzfeed that has to write that day's "I rewatched [title goes here] and it has NOT aged well!" story or someone delivering their "hot take" on Twitter really has an investment in what they're saying? They're just churning out a story. They don't care, no one will remember the article in a week and they're just trying to get clicks on their site. There's no reason to give manufactured outrage like that a second thought.

However, an honest reappraisal of a movie (like I've seen on TCM) is a fair and worthy discussion. I like plenty of movies that would likely be deemed to be 'bad' by a lot of modern-day viewers. I'm a fan of blaxploitation, rape/revenge movies, slasher pictures and most of those movies have elements that are just f-ed up. That doesn't mean I have to throw the discs in the trash but I can acknowledge what is good and bad about them.
 

Angelo Colombus

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Finished watching The Biggest Bundle of Them All with Robert Wagner, Raquel Welch and Vittorio De Sica and noticed the TCM logo popped up every half hour or so and the logo is bigger and more towards the middle of the screen instead of the lower right bottom.
 

Reggie W

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Wonder if Don Rickles would be acceptable today?

Likely a lot of his material would not be. He was an insult comic and certainly used the make fun of everyone and our differences to bring people together idea. The problem with that now is if you make fun of someone or a group of people it is just seen as making fun of people and is frowned upon. Comedians do complain how hard hit they have been by this. It now just kind of breaks down into things like a woman can make fun of women. A person of color can make fun of other people of color. A guy can make fun of other guys. When you start to get outside of those boxes it can just be seen as nasty and inappropriate. Don Rickles was intentionally inappropriate and meant to shock you a bit. He is also now someone that they would want to contextualize.

Most comedy as I grew up was meant to shock and to be inappropriate. There was also always this rebellious spirit in all entertainment that was about pushing boundaries and seeing how far you could go...in the effort to get to somewhere better. Now over the last 30 years the idea has flipped to conform, follow the rules, be appropriate, don't push boundaries, make sure nobody is offended.

I'm a relic in this way because that is hard for me to grasp. Being offended was a minor thing as I grew up. It was not the subject of lawsuits and endless shaming and insisting on an apology pretty much every single time you are in public or you are then considered terrible.

People did not claim they were permanently damaged due to someone offending them. I think lawyers changed that and so now nobody wants to be sued for being offensive. This is certainly a lousy time to be a public figure because anything you say could be seen as offensive and you will be destroyed by it and hunted for it for years. Millions of people now pour over every word you say looking for something offensive. Something you said ten years ago can destroy you now.

Can you imagine Richard Pryor doing his show now and being sued because someone went home "permanently damaged" by something he said? John Wayne is long dead but if you work in the "business" you best say he was a terrible person otherwise you risk people claiming you likely agree with him because you have not come out against him. You can say he made good films but you must contextualize that with "But he was a terrible person."

We just live in strange times now...or strange times to someone over 50 I guess. When social media was beginning to really take off I remember a lawyer saying to me "This is going to go very bad in a very short period of time."

People were being told "You have to have social media accounts. You have to post on them several times a day. You have to get hits and likes."

This lawyer said to me "I would tell clients to stay off social media because it will be a new avenue to sue people because now you are not just making a comment, you are typing it out so it is in writing and you are handing that to the world."

He was entirely correct.
 
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DVBRD

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I wonder if TCM/WB's attempt to keep GWTW in circulation for posterity reasons would mean them doing the same for Ken Russell's THE DEVILS?

I can only guess the answer will be no.
 

Robert Crawford

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I'm waiting to see how much of Eddie Muller's setup on "Noir Alley" has changed or not.
The setup hasn't changed, but unfortunately, they changed the opening sequence of "Noir Alley". I'm pretty sure fans of this weekly program are going to be very vocal with their criticism of that particular change.
 

Robert Crawford

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Somebody mentioned earlier in this thread about bringing back Robert Osborne's remarks and/or interviews. Well, last night, they did bring back his interview with Mitzi Gaynor for "The Joker is Wild". Unfortunately, they didn't show the movie in its widescreen OAR instead had this VistaVision movie in 1.33.
 

Angelo Colombus

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Somebody mentioned earlier in this thread about bringing back Robert Osborne's remarks and/or interviews. Well, last night, they did bring back his interview with Mitzi Gaynor for "The Joker is Wild". Unfortunately, they didn't show the movie in its widescreen OAR instead had this VistaVision movie in 1.33.
I watched that too last night and the earlier film Les Girls. It was nice to see Robert Osborne.
 

Ken Koc

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Somebody mentioned earlier in this thread about bringing back Robert Osborne's remarks and/or interviews. Well, last night, they did bring back his interview with Mitzi Gaynor for "The Joker is Wild". Unfortunately, they didn't show the movie in its widescreen OAR instead had this VistaVision movie in 1.33.
Sad to hear that. THE JOKER IS WILD need to be restored to Vistavision brilliance
 

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