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Posted on May 9, 2012 6:35:50 PM PDT
Re: "Rosebud was a Sled" ..."She's a guy" ... "Luke, I am you father" [which is actually a misquote; real line being: "No. I am your father" - I hate that I know that.]

I mean, these are all examples of "spoilers" that have entered the pop culture lexicon as surely as:
"I could have been a contender;" "I'll be back!;" and "Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, PUNK?"

.... If they've already been Spoiled, we can't spoil them anymore, unless we're introducing these movies to a child for the first time.

Most true spoilers aren't that well known at all.

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 6:48:55 PM PDT
Hikari says:
@D.

Oh, yes. Just wait until you see the sequel!
-----------------------------------------------------
(this comment repeats spoilers about THE CRYING GAME that have been previously revealed . . just about everywhere. So if you have made it this far without watching this movie, you'd best exit this thread right NOW.)

>>>THE CRYING GAME: She's a guy.
Pauline Kael said she knew the second she saw Jaye Davidson's hands. I think I suspected it, but wasn't sure, and I'm glad I didn't know for sure.<<<

Well, Pauline was one up on me, then, because I didn't guess. And I don't think Jaye Davidson has man hands at all. I wonder if Pauline was filtering her comment through her later knowledge than her absolute first gut reaction, because Jaye completely inhabited the spirit of a woman. That 'big reveal' was so shocking precisely because the facade had not slipped at all until then. At least, I thought so.

I had an advantage of surprise, because I was living abroad when the movie came out, and so I did not get to see it in the theatre or hang around people who were discussing it. Even if they were, it would have been in Japanese and likely sailed right over my head. And the cybersphere didn't really exist yet. So I went into the Crying Game cold.

Jaye has very feminine hands. But even had I not known at the outset that Forest Whittaker was an American, I'm pretty sure I would have been able to tell that 'Jody' was not English-born the first time he opened his mouth. It wasn't good. And I thought enlisted men on active duty were supposed to be fit? The scenes with Whittaker and Stephen Rea as his captor are quite visceral and stunning, but that is despite Mr. Whittaker's labored attempt at a Cockney (?) accent. The dialogue is just that good and the emotional tenor of those encounters.

Now that I "know", I can still watch The Crying Game and marvel at what that cast did. I still buy into Jaye's performance, despite what I know. That, ladies and gents, is acting! It really is enough to make a biological female feel quite lacking in some respects. The ending is purposely ambiguous . . Will Fergus move in with Dil when he gets out of prison and be her lover, despite his protestations to 'stop calling me that'. His words say 'no', but he's shared a profound connection with this person that can't be broken just because of what he now knows. He has had to realign what he thought he knew about Dil and himself, but I don't think he's going to not have her in his life. Even if that makes him, technically, gay.

It's been 20 years since The Crying Game--I don't think the 'big twist' would have that much shock value any more. Trannies are trendy now. Likewise, that kiss between Michael Caine and Christopher Reeve? They have at least one 'guys making out' sketch on SNL every week; today's audiences have become jaded to man-love on film.

I am not so jaded that I want to see Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor making out in "I Love You, Philip Morris", though.

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 6:57:52 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 9, 2012 7:03:43 PM PDT
Re: "Everybody who has already wanted to see the movie has seen it by now."

W. David English says: "The guy who said that is a fool."

I know, and he was the head video/movie curate at the Museum of Art here for awhile.
That's an exact quote. He also had a considerable high budget to rent 35mm and 16mm films, and that he usually did, but if the print had "too many scratches" he would show a VHS instead. This was in 2003!
One of the times I went to see Robert Bresson's 'Diary of a Country Priest'. I overheard his talking to another about how he was going to show it in VHS, like he did with 'A Man Escaped', and I butt in to ask if he ordered the movie on film, to which he said: "Yes, but people will like the video, it looks better." I asked if he could maybe be democratic and put it to a vote before the screening (there were less than 50 people in attendance.)
The vote, by a narrow margin, was to show the 16mm print (even though he really bad-mouthed the film, saying it was "full of splices and deterioration.")
I was so glad to score that little victory for film that night, and to be able to see a pretty good 16mm print, which no doubt looked much better than any VHS could have.

We weren't so lucky when the time came to show 'Pickpocket'. He didn't even bother to order film in that case, knowing I would be there with my season tickets and my deviant love of democracy. I trust the common sense of a well-informed people, who don't mind a scratch or two, for real, rich film, rather than insipid, washed-out VHS.

This same joker was also the first person in my life to call me a "film purist" as an accusation. Before then, I didn't know that phrase could be used in a pejorative sense.
Years later, I discovered the internet, and at last realized that every description could be used in the pejorative, per some extreme points of view.

Re: 'The Passion of the Christ'...

>"Does it have a happy ending, does anybody know?"<

I hear there's a sequel in the works. That could just be an internet rumor.

Posted on May 9, 2012 7:32:52 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 9, 2012 10:30:57 PM PDT]

Posted on May 9, 2012 7:58:01 PM PDT
I think, at the end of the day, the best we can do is type the ****SPOILERS**** thingy, thus placating all sides of the coin (except for those who are compelled to read no matter how much warning they are given). I think a fair warning about *****SPOILERS***** is exactly that: a fair warning.

PS - excellent point about about age. People grow up everyday, and years and years of movies past are opened up to fresh eyes.

@reviews
Myself, I am more likely to read reviews of films I have already seen, rather than films I have yet to see. I like comparing notes, so to speak. The fact that ratings are rarely the same as mine, or if they are it is often for different reasons, has lead me to pick which films I want to see based on the simplest reason of whether it piques my interest. I genuinely can't remember the last time a review played a role in my wanting to see a particular film. Conversely, it is often that my having seen a film has lead to me reading many reviews of that film.

In closing, *****SPOILERS***** should cover all bases, and if it doesn't, then you/me/us have done our best for those who don't want a film they have yet to see spoiled, and there is little left for you/me/us to do about it. Word!

Posted on May 9, 2012 8:03:27 PM PDT
Hikari says:
Didn't I just say that trannies are trendy?
----------------------------------------------------
http://music.yahoo.com/blogs/stop-the-presses/tom-gabel-punk-band-against-comes-woman-184118884.html

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 8:13:04 PM PDT
C McGhee says:
W. David English- Psycho

I must be in a minority on that then. Besides, today it's peple talking among themselves that gives that away. You're more likely to hear it at work than you are to see it in a review. Your view point seems to be that reading is seeing. I think not.

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 8:22:39 PM PDT
Q says:
JB: >" Then there are people who think it's perfectly acceptable to give a complete plot synopsis of a movie (which is perfectly pointless, really) without any concern for the sensitive areas of the plot they may be revealing.<"

Man, don't you HATE those reviewers?! A synopsis is NOT a review. If I wanted to know the play by play, I'll just read the d@*n subtitles! What a waste of space!

These guys fall right in with those unitards who give a movie 1 star because the disc they received didn't play or something.

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 8:35:01 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 9, 2012 8:44:18 PM PDT
Q says:
Hi, Kari: >"I think that's why James Cameron had to insert a fictional romance into his movie of Titanic--there had to be a modicum of suspense. Somebody that doesn't know the Titanic sank deserves to have their movie spoiled."

How do WE know the titanic had no romance?! It sank!

If he really wanted a modicum of suspense...he should have made the titanic actually MAKE it to the destination. Then, people would have been left hanging on the edge of their seats for 3.5 hours screaming, "HERE IT COMES!" "THERE'S THE ICEBERG!" "WAAAAIT FOR IT....!" "OH...NOT THAT ONE..." "HERE IT COMES!!!" "THERE'S THE ICEBERG!!!!" "WHAAAAAAT? IT NARROWLY MISSED THE ICEBERG AGAIN AND THEY ARE SAFELY DISEMBARKING IN NEW YORK CITY, JOKING AND GOING FOR A LATTE?!?"

[people stomping out of the theater]------> "I WANT MY MONEY BACK! I paid $8 to watch this f*****g ship go down, and I wanna see it, G0DD@MMIT!!!!! [Meanwhile, the ticket booth workers are dodging empty buckets of popcorn, watered down Cokes, and Reece's Pieces.]

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 8:39:48 PM PDT
C McGhee says:
Q- Cameron's Titanic

YAWN! The shots of the boat going down were nice but that can be said about sex too.

Posted on May 9, 2012 8:42:59 PM PDT
Q says:
The band playing 'Music To Die By' was a nice touch.

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 8:55:57 PM PDT
C McGhee says:
Q- The band playing 'Music To Die By' was a nice touch.

I don't want the band on any ship I'm on to know any tune by heart that remotely resembles that title. I'll take music from Swan Lake if I'm bending over to KMA. At least it reminds me of the terms lithe & limber.

In reply to an earlier post on May 9, 2012 9:51:06 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 9, 2012 9:54:14 PM PDT
Q: >"These guys fall right in with those unitards who give a movie 1 star because the disc they received didn't play or something."<

Hahah, I just had one of those 'where have I been all my life moments': this is the first I've heard that word 'unitards' used for this purpose!
Exactly the right word for those who type "reviews" on a website like this, which say something like:

``Disc Did Not Arrive on Time!!!!!!

....and when it did come, my machine wouldn't play it because the seller didn't warn me via email that I can't play Region B Blu-rays on my trusty ol' Videodisc player. This is an evil seller who's trying to trick people into buying new video machines!
Plus the disc had fingerprints on it, which may be why it didn't play right (?)

Bottom line - I could not watch this thing called The Man Who Would Be King, because of bad seller selling bad videodiscs through trickery.
The Emperor wears no cloths with this seller.
Stay away from this seller, he's bad seller, mess you up!
The Man Who Would Be King = 1 star (I wish I could give zero stars tho, but Amazon won't let me.)``

- Review by Ulli Unitard McMouthbreather

Posted on May 10, 2012 4:16:18 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 10, 2012 4:16:50 AM PDT
George Clooney, in his commentary for "Good Night and Good Luck", points out that when you watch "All The President's Men" you get completely caught up in the reporters' quest, you worry when it looks like the story is indefinitely stalled, you worry about their safety. All this, despite the fact that everybody knows that Nixon eventually was driven from office, many of his men went to prison, and that Woodward and Bernstein were not snuffed! That's the power of film.

Still, when I see a fictional film, I don't want all the surprises revealed ahead of time. I knew something horrible happened in "Million Dollar Baby", but I didn't know what it was going to be, and when I did see it, it was very powerful.

Anybody out there see the Dutch film "The Vanishing"? (There was a bad American remake, by the same director, strangely---but forget that one.) You never see a drop of blood, and except for one man taking a few clumsy swings at another man, there's no violence. But it's the scariest film I've ever seen. At the ending, the big revelation, people in the audience were gasping in dismay and fright. Now, if I'd known what was going to happen, the movie would not have been nearly as potent.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 5:18:00 AM PDT
Balok says:
@W. David English:

"Anybody out there see the Dutch film "The Vanishing"? (There was a bad American remake, by the same director, strangely---but forget that one.) You never see a drop of blood, and except for one man taking a few clumsy swings at another man, there's no violence. But it's the scariest film I've ever seen. At the ending, the big revelation, people in the audience were gasping in dismay and fright. Now, if I'd known what was going to happen, the movie would not have been nearly as potent."

I saw the movie knowing the twist at the end, and it didn't make the ending any less potent. Or any less stupid as soon as you take two minutes to think about the massive plot holes. It's perhaps an indication of the film's quality as a psychological horror movie that one doesn't think about the plot holes until after the movie is over.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 5:56:51 AM PDT
Balok:

I always maintain that a good film doesn't have to hold up upon hard scrutiny afterwards, it has to hold up while you're watching it. Lots of good films have significant plot holes that dawn on you upon reflection. But if you had a good time while watching it, that's what counts.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 8:17:09 AM PDT
Cav: re Empire: didn't you figure out in advance that Vader had to be Luke's father? As soon as I heard that there was a twist, I knew that that had to be the case.

Perhaps the only twist that really does matter is Rosebud. But I've seen Kane dozens of times--and even before the first time I saw it, I knew about Rosebud, and it's still a potent image--even more potent when you know it's coming.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 8:18:37 AM PDT
JB: Re Sixth Sense--of course it was obvious by the end of the first reel!

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 8:19:22 AM PDT
WDE: Any adult who has not seen The Godfather and Casablanca has had a defective education.

Posted on May 10, 2012 8:25:59 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 10, 2012 8:26:23 AM PDT
WDE: Of course every viewer is different. I tend to see plot holes very quickly--and any film loses points big time if, afterwards, you think "Gosh, you could drive a semi through that plot hole."

Someone once gave a highly subjective, but not entirely inapt, definition of a great film--one that you can't bear the thought of not seeing again. I, for one, can't bear the thought of seeing films that don't have a degree of coherence again--particularly if they pretend to be serious. Case in point--both sequels to The Matrix, and, frankly, The Matrix itself, the premises of which are so mind-blowing stupid that I have to check my brain completely to even think about watching it again.

Posted on May 10, 2012 8:33:01 AM PDT
Savage Lucy says:
Hikari - You should watch Philip Morris. One of the cutest, funniest movies I've seen in a while. And everything in it is true. Even the stuff that makes you say, "Oh that couldn't possibly have happened that way." The Carrey/Macgregor making out scene is hardly that squicky. Promise.

Posted on May 10, 2012 9:17:10 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 10, 2012 9:17:39 AM PDT
I wasn't talking about films that have no coherence. I'm talking about films that you enjoy while you're seeing them. That a movie's plot holes or internal illogic becomes apparent upon reflection is of minimal concern to me if I enjoyed it while watching it. Even if the plot holes are later detectable, I don't care so much. We're not talking about securing o-rings on a space shuttle, we're talking movies. A few fissures aren't going to hurt anybody. (Documentaries are different---they have to hold up factually.)

A minor example: "My Week With Marilyn" is illogical as a title, as the film's events take place over much longer than a week. But they kept the title of the memoir the film was based on, and it sounds good, better than "My Month With Marilyn" or whatever.

If James Mason and confederates wanted to kill Cary Grtant in "North By Northwest", they could have killed him a lot easier than by hiring some crop-dusting plane pilot to take him out out in the middle or rural Illinois. But it's a great scene, and who cares if it makes logical sense?

Posted on May 10, 2012 9:25:37 AM PDT
Cavaradossi says:
William A. Smith

Re Empire

I had no idea when Empire first came out that there was a big twist coming, nor did I know it when I finally caught the film on its revival a year later. (Oddly, the theatre didn't play Star Wars.) I was caught completely by surprise. As I recall it, conversations with coworkers and friends in that intervening year concerned the excitement of the two movies and the amazing special effects. I don't remember much discussion on the evolving mythology of the movies. Articles I read at the time also refrained from discussing the Big Reveal.

Concerning the special effects, I wonder how many now remember (younger viewers can't know) that the original SW films were each on the technological cutting edge of filmmaking at the times of their releases? One saw things either never seen before or better done than ever before. It was part of their mystique. At least, this is the way I remember it.

Posted on May 10, 2012 9:34:04 AM PDT
Cavaradossi says:
When I'm watching a film I'm very character driven. It's only afterward I may have a "Hey, wait a minute....!" moment. It's usually only if the characters and their story appeal to me that I will want to revisit a movie. But when questions do occur to me while watching, they only take me out of the story if I'm not engaged by the characters. For instance, I had a lot of questions while Avatar was playing and they did bother me, long before the end. Nothing in Avatar, though, really engaged me. I guess maybe you had to see it in 3D for that to happen.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 9:41:32 AM PDT
Hikari says:
@WDE
I was a bit confused by the title at first, too, since "The Prince and the Showgirl" shoot was much longer than a week. The 'week' being referred to is the period that our protagonist spent some alone time with Miss Monroe upon the departure of her husband, Arthur Miller. That wasn't enough to build an entire feature film around, so they padded it out to include more of the shoot. Apparently there was enough incident during that week (at least in Colin Clark's mind) to take up an entire half of his memoir.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Week_with_Marilyn

Some interesting production notes on the film here. Ralph Fiennes had originally been slated to play Olivier, but pulled out due to conflicts with his own directorial project Coriolanus. Then Branagh was brought onboard. A Fiennes Olivier would have been interesting but probably not as comic as Ken's. Catherine Zeta-Jones was asked to play Vivien Leigh, but declined citing her husband's health.

Scarlett Johansson was an early contender for Marilyn. Um. Scarlett is blonde and certainly has the Monroesque figure . . .but can you imagine MM speaking in that low, gravelly monotone of ScarJo's? I cannot. I was impressed by Michelle who manages to embody MM without actually looking much like her or being built like her at all. But the breakout find for me was Eddie Redmayne as Colin. We will next see Eddie as Marius in the new "Les Miserables" film.
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