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DannytheWall

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DannytheWall last won the day on October 19 2018

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  1. DannytheWall

    Episode 226 - Body of Evidence: LIVE!

    When Paul was wondering if he saw a vagina, I half-wondered if he was going to mention the giant flowing curtains that parted suggestively as DaFoe's character was staring at the houseboat. I think that sequence must have been storyboarded by Georgia O'Keefe.
  2. DannytheWall

    Episode 224: Starcrash: LIVE!

    I like that number four was among your best three, but number three wasn't.
  3. DannytheWall

    The Monster Squad (1987)

    Can we give this one a bump? I managed to track this down after many people cited this as one of the many 80s-inspirations for Stranger Things. Oh boy. This ... they're just... I don't even know where to start. Definitely full of you-can't-do-that-anymore kind of tropes as mentioned above (let's not forget the token black person in the movie being the only one to die, and a very non-Bechdel through-line), But come on, the overacting, the gaping plot holes ... Some goofy fun for sure but the only question to ask is how the hell did this get made?
  4. DannytheWall

    Spartacus

    Watching the film in its entirety for the first time, and I realized that it features TWO actors who I constantly mix up with others. The first one: I always forget to distinguish between Tim Curry and Tony Curtis In my head until I watch the film, and remember "oh yeah. it's that guy." Similarly, but perhaps more strangely, the second one: Lawrence Olivier and Sidney Poitier.
  5. DannytheWall

    Some Like It Hot

    Sorry for the shamelessness. I was a second rounder in the Austin Film Festival screenwriting competition with my script "Some Like It K-pop," a gender-flipped reimagining where two girls disguise themselves as men to join a Korean boy band. I don't often get a chance to bring it up in conversation, but I never pass up the opportunity :)
  6. DannytheWall

    Mortdecai (2015)

    BUMP this up! I didn't see this one when it came out and saw how everyone agreed how bad it was. I found a plot summary recently and was like, wait, that doesn't sound that bad. (It was listening to the director David Koepp on the podcast ScriptNotes. He mentioned almost off-hand the "M" movie that "must not be talked about," and I thought he was talking about the recent Mummy. Looking over his filmography, I thought immediately. Oh, it was Mortdecai, wasn't it. Yes. Yes it was. It was really much more than "that bad." And it can hear Jason's voice in my head "I. Did. Not. Like. This. Movie!"
  7. DannytheWall

    On The Waterfront

    There is a really good documentary from PBS American Masters featuring Kazan, Arthur Miller, and the blacklist. Haven't seen it in years but it stuck with me. Guess what I found on YouTube!
  8. DannytheWall

    On The Waterfront

    But that means people with the gun were waiting to knock off Terry and he just got out of the car earlier, then just catch up with him later 'round the corner or something. They were already going to kill him, and now they just have to figure out a different location. Instead they kill Charlie and just yell out Terry's name. I know in my head the reasons the movie gives, but it always seemed a weak point of the plot to me. Like, OF COURSE killing Charlie would be the turning point and cause Terry to finally step up. Like when the Emperor just *had* to say that last line to Luke Skywalker about Luke's anger, making Luke finally stop being angry. It always seems more narratively *convenient* than logical to me. I just now realized the whole reluctant-to-actually-do-anything-hero trope parallel to Hamlet. Not sure if this makes the film better or Kazan even more pretentious. Yes, Kazan and many of his college friends and members of the Group Theatre were members of the Communist Party in the 20s/30s,(?) but it was a far cry from the Stalinst and Mao Tse Dongist kind of Communism that arose after WWII. Most Americans who grew out of the Depression saw the abstract ideals of Marxism as very appealing, after all, and HUAC was not about to make that distinction when there was better policitcal opportunity. Kazan likely rationalized that they already had his name, and they already had the names of the people he gave them. But the real fallout wasn't in the names themselves, it was the legitamacy it gave to McCarthyism and HUAC in general. They got any numbers of feathers in their cap by making Hollywood capitulate. I tried to think of an equivalency in our own times, and it might be around gun control. Perhaps in the way someone in their youth would have been a card-carrying member of the NRA, but in recent years deciding to give up their membership, after marrying, having a family and career, etc. Now add to that a hypothetical world where you'd have to testify and risk losing your livelihood because of that card you held in your college days. It's easy in hindsight or hypotheticals to condemn Kazan, and I appreciate the enormity of the decision, but I am like others here, disappointed in him.
  9. DannytheWall

    On The Waterfront

    But before that point they certainly could. I mean, they *tried* but they sent the brother to do it. And speaking of that, I'm not sure why it would be necessary to kill Charlie outright, and not, you know, just "lean on 'im" a little instead. But hey, I guess that's why I'm not a 50s gangster.
  10. DannytheWall

    On The Waterfront

    No one can be sure, but it's likely that Kazan could have continued working, albeit in the theatre as there was no blacklist. He was an award winning theatrical director who "just" entered Hollywood six or seven years prior to HUAC, after all. And that's the route taken by many of his friends in the Group Theatre who faced similar moral dilemmas, notably Arthur Miller. It's difficult for me to parse this film from the context of its authors (the screenwriter Shulburg also named names in front of HUAC) I came to know and watch this film when learning (and later teaching, and later acting in, and directing) The Crucible, in which John Proctor makes a very different decision than Terry Malloy. Also, yeah... I really don't like the Edie character. Hmm. Mental note: Idea for a short scene 2-woman play, featuring Edie and Elizabeth Proctor meeting for the first time for some reason.
  11. DannytheWall

    On The Waterfront

    something about Lee J Cobb's fantastic pointing always makes me smile no matter which film he's starring in
  12. DannytheWall

    Lawrence of Arabia

    I remember seeing this film the first time as a young person precisely because it was so influential on things like Raiders of the Lost Ark. (The character as well as the film itself-- in I think it was the first episode of Young Indiana Jones in which Li'l Indy meets TE Lawerence.) However, I must admit that I didn't appreciate it much more than, as Paul called it, "homework." I do appreciate the film better after various attempts to re-watch, but on this latest attempt for this podcast, I realize I am in a much different place as I just could not get around seeing so much of the white savior stuff in it. Paul & Amy make mention of this criticism, but don't really focus on it too much. "Can't be a white savior movie if it's a true story?" I understand the sentiment, but I disagree. Isn't it a white savior movie not because it's making one side, the "other," as bad vs. good-- it's that the growth of the main character is paramount and even superceded over the plight of the "native." Not so much of a counterbalance. Isn't he just the "noble savage", demarked as separated thanks to his exposure to the Western world previously? [about Amy seeing subversion of the trope by seeing people treat Lawrence like a god] She sees it as implying that the "British are [will be?] just as bad [i.e. barbaric?]." This is a bit of a modern reading, I think. First, I because I don't think it's discordant in the first place. But also because the intent seems to be to say "look at how bad it is if the white man accepts this," precisely BECAUSE the Arab peoples are willing to give the power that can be destructive as such. It's incredibly patronizing, dismissive, and entirely from the Western point of view. If Lawrence is uncomfortable seeing himself as a savior, it's due to it being a white man's "hero's journey" into "wilderness" as well as to set up the hubris that will cause his fall (being "tainted" by this other world.) That being said, the film isn't trying for much socio-political commentary, so I don't think these tropes are necessarily damning to the film. It's a pseudo-historical biography and it's TE Lawrence's personal internal story, but isn't it a kind of priveledge to be able to have this point of view? If we have to grapple with The Searchers, Gone with the Wind, Swing Time, and more, we have to grapple with this one, too.
  13. DannytheWall

    Lawrence of Arabia

    I did think it was interesting that this film was made in 1962 after TE Lawerence's death in 1935-- people watching it in 1963 certainly would have TE Lawrence in their cultural memory quite strongly. It would be as if someone in 2019 produced a big budget movie about a figure who died in 1991-- say, like, Freddie Mercury? Or Theodore Geisel/Dr. Seuss. Other notable passings in 1991 were John Steinbeck, Frank Capra, and Miles Davis. Also Shamu the Whale but that doesn't seem quite the same. Incidentally, David Lean, the director himself. passed in 1991. The events of World War I was about 50 years from the time of the film (1962), meaning the equivalent of 2019 would be films about Vietnam, actually. Strange how that doesn't feel like an equivalency. We seem to be over that in some ways, at least in terms of epic filmmaking. The Gulf War would have been around that 1991 date, though.
  14. DannytheWall

    Network

    One more memory about Network. A few years back, I was a teacher-coach for the high school Speech team. I was coaching a student in his Dramatic Monologue, and after pointing him to several sources, he selected Howard Beale from Network. He did a pretty good job of it, too, if I can humbly say, and on the day of the Speech contest, he delivered a rousing speech on the theatre stage. Perhaps he channeled a little bit too much from Beale's frustrated rage, as in a pique of unrehearsed passion, he flung the stool he had used across the stage. Luckily, it wasn't into the audience at all, but unluckily, it chipped the wall of the host school's newly refurbished theater. He got a silver award for the speech and a request for a public apology to the host school's Drama class. He accepted both, but we will always wonder if it was supposed to be a gold.
  15. DannytheWall

    Network

    Paul & Amy-- "This film really is about how the old must make way for the new." Also Paul & Amy-- "Film these days! Not like how they used to be in the good ol' days. Makes me want to cry. We're just dead." (I kid! I love!)
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