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Films of Sergio Leone => Other Films => Topic started by: fluisterwoud on December 05, 2004, 07:14:55 PM



Title: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: fluisterwoud on December 05, 2004, 07:14:55 PM
Hey remember that mayor of the Tombstone  with that stick going around, remember. Well anyway i like that part when he finishes his speach and then goes something like " Gentlemen" ! and lifts his stick , I just love that part.  
As for the whole movie it was ok i guess. What was cool and surprising how Val Kilmer and the fello from 1 Terminator(Ringo guy)  fit in the movie part so good, god damn all i got to say.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Two Kinds of ... on December 05, 2004, 11:00:43 PM
Hey remember that mayor of the Tombstone  with that stick going around, remember. Well anyway i like that part when he finishes his speach and then goes something like " Gentlemen" ! and lifts his stick , I just love that part.  
As for the whole movie it was ok i guess. What was cool and surprising how Val Kilmer and the fello from 1 Terminator(Ringo guy)  fit in the movie part so good, god damn all i got to say.
They waste too much time on the love subplots in act 2, making it drag.  The action is good, though.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Harmonica45 on March 08, 2005, 03:03:44 PM
I've only seen part of the movie so I don't know the characters that well, but I liked the part when one guy tries to show up the drunk one with his gun spinning skills.  Then the drunk guy started spinning his glass aroung.  ThAT MADE ME LAUGH. ;D


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Harmonica45 on March 08, 2005, 03:04:38 PM
around*


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on March 08, 2005, 03:10:25 PM
Quote
They waste too much time on the love subplots in act 2, making it drag.  The action is good, though

Hey fluisterwoud you hit the nail right on the head!

That was Leone's chief complaint with American westerns, he thought the love/romance side plots killed the stories of a lot of good western films.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on June 09, 2006, 05:30:26 PM
Didn't see another topic on this, but I've been watching "Tombstone" with Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer a lot recently, and was curious what you guys thought of it.

The movie had a lot of obvious Leone pastiches with close-ups and such (particularly the OK Corral gunfight and the Doc-Ringo duel, which uses almost verbatim shots from GBU), which were fun to spot.  Overall it seemed like a sort of traditional Western with squibs and foul language, nothing wrong with that.  I didn't really like Kurt Russell or Dana Delaney much, but Val Kilmer, Powers Boothe, Michael Biehn, Stephen Lang, and Sam Elliot were all outstanding.  And as inaccurate as it is, this film's version of the OK Corral gunfight has to be the best I've ever seen.  It also has one of the most quotable scripts I've seen in awhile, write up there with "The Professionals" for genuinely witty dialogue.

So, what do you guys think of this movie?


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on June 09, 2006, 05:41:28 PM
I'll have to watch it again before I can chime in.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: The Firecracker on June 09, 2006, 09:14:33 PM
I'll have to watch it again before I can chime in.
same here.
Didnt remember liking it much.
I'll get back to you on it soon (hopefully) since it plays a lot on Encore westerns.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 10, 2006, 09:42:01 AM


So, what do you guys think of this movie?
I'm yer huckleberry.

Almost a good film. It violates Leone's Rule #2 (Rule #1 is Have a Gunfight Every 10 Minutes). That rule follows from SL's condemnation of Sturges effort on the same subject: What was Rhonda Fleming doing in Gunfight at the OK Corral? If they had kept the women out of the picture, Tombstone would have worked very well. I liked Val Kilmer a lot, and the psycho bad guy, played by Michael Behn (sp?), was totally fab. It could have been great....


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: titoli on June 10, 2006, 12:54:17 PM
Leone broke his own rule in UOTW, didn't he?

Anyway must have caught some snippet of this on Tv and wasn't attracted visually. I'll give it a try if a dvd turns up, though.

 


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Tim on June 10, 2006, 04:19:50 PM
  Tombstone is obviously not the most accurate western, but I always have a great time watching it.  I completely agree with Groggy about the movie's quotability, from Ringo's opening line to the showdown between Doc and Ringo.  As well, Tombstone is more enjoyable than Costner's Wyatt Earp, which is far too long.

  But for me, Val Kilmer makes this movie.  He should have won an Oscar for his role.

  Overall, a great cast, good action, very quotable, and one of the best modern westerns from the last 15-20 years.  And it was good to see Harry Carey JR as Sheriff White, even if it is briefly.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on June 10, 2006, 04:40:56 PM
And of course, Charlton Heston's cameo was fun too.  I did think it was funny that he was like sixth-billed when he had two minutes of screen time and four lines of dialogue. . .   ::)

I prefered Boothe and Lang to Biehn, though he was great too.  Boothe seems to have been channelling Lee Marvin's performance as Liberty Valance, while I've been a Lang fan since first seeing "Gettysburg" - he's one of the most underappreciated actors in Hollywood IMO.

My favorite scene is the killing of Marshal White and the subsequent standoff between the Earps and Cowboys; it reminded me again of "Liberty Valance" (which I'm sure was a big reference point), for the scenes where John Wayne and Woody Strode saved Jimmy Stewart from Liberty's gang.  Great acting, dialogue, and a hell of a lot of tension in that scene.

Quote
"I swear to God, law dog, if you don't step aside we're gonna tear you apart-"
"You die first, get it?  Your friends might get me in a rush, but not before I make your head into a canoe - you understand?"


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on June 10, 2006, 10:44:54 PM
I thought Stuges's "Hour of the Gun" was pretty good, not great ( the trial at the beginning seems to bog it down a bit), I has James Garner as Earp on a vengeance trail, Jason Robards as Doc, and Robert Ryan in the Ike Clanton role, scenery shots are good, no memorable lines, and score was forgetable.

We could probably do a whole thread on Wyatt Earp/OK Corral based films.

One 70's flick that dealt with it that I remember was pretty good was "Doc" with Stacey Keach in the role of Holiday and Faye Dunnaway as "Big Nose" Kate Elder .


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Leone Admirer on June 11, 2006, 07:28:05 AM
I love it  ;D . It's my guilty secret Western and my Dad loves it also. Don't take it seriously and you'll have a ball.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 12, 2006, 09:27:37 AM
Leone broke his own rule in UOTW, didn't he?


Which is why the film isn't a spaghetti, and proof that SL was capable of something impossible for most filmmakers, transcending one's style. Leone and Meta-Leone: two of the greatest directors in the history of cinema.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 12, 2006, 10:20:34 AM

We could probably do a whole thread on Wyatt Earp/OK Corral based films.


I'd like to see a mini-series TV version of the story. Most films have the famous shoot-out as the climax of the conflict; Hour of the Gun begins with it and showed the aftermath. It would be good to combine all parts of the narrative in one long cycle, something impossible to do in a feature film.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on June 12, 2006, 05:32:13 PM
I will say for the record that I liked "Wyatt Earp", but I will agree it's much too long.  The OK Corral gunfight was probably the most accurate of all the versions I've seen (though I prefer Tombstone's version for entertainment value), though the film isn't as accurate as it's made it out to be.  Kevin Costner is a much better Earp than Kurt Russell, and Dennis Quaid gives Val Kilmer a run for his money as Doc.

As I've said before, I don't really care for "My Darling Clementine".  Good acting for the most part (particularly Fonda and Brennan) and a few good scenes, but nothing terribly impressive.  I will however try to watch it again sometime.

"Gunfight At The OK Corral" is a reasonably entertaining Western with a great cast, but it's not very high on my list.  I found the musical score/commentary annoying, to say the least.

I've not seen "Hour of the Gun" or "Doc".


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 13, 2006, 11:25:07 AM


As I've said before, I don't really care for "My Darling Clementine".  Good acting for the most part (particularly Fonda and Brennan) and a few good scenes, but nothing terribly impressive.  I will however try to watch it again sometime.
The best argument I know for "My Darling Clementine"  being Ford's best picture is "My Darling Clementine" itself. Groggy, watch this film 10 more times and report back. It has so much going for it: not just the acting, not just the writing, not just the noir-like cinematography (by the great Joe MacDonald), not just the presence of Linda Darnell . . . well, the proof of the pudding is in the eating, as they say, so please chow down soon. (BTW, I prefer the pre-release version that has less of the music Zanuck insisted on using; Ford was onto something with that spare soundtrack idea).


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 15, 2006, 09:20:49 AM
Another film loosely based on the Earp brothers (very loosely based) is Samuel Fuller's Forty Guns. Intead of Pa Clanton, however, you get Barbara Stanwyck, and thus, a love story . . . Still, some great images and in 'scope. SL learned a few tricks from this one.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on June 15, 2006, 05:08:53 PM
Wasn't "Warlock" supposed to be a version of the Earp story?  At least, that's what I'd heard. . .


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 16, 2006, 09:17:36 AM
It has the fearless-lawman-turned-hired-gun angle, but little else in common with the Earps. Forty Guns actually has 3 brothers, one of whom who gets gunned down, etc.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: noodles_leone on June 16, 2006, 11:30:53 AM
I saw "My Darling Clementine" during the night I spent at Goulding's Lodge... Which is  (a few of us know it) the Lodge of Monument Valley. This is why I'll never be objective about this movie: I was too euphoric ::)


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on November 12, 2006, 08:07:32 AM
Time to resurrect this thread.

I had a Best Buy card that I got from purchasing a monitor a few months ago so I was in the store the yesterday an picked up Tombstone, as part of the Western collection I'm building.

Anyway sat down and watched this again last night and its a pretty good actioner if thats all you are interested in. It is a bit dialogue driven rather than a visual image story and it does dwell a bit too much on the women (I guess its a trade mark of modern film). All of that could have been implied and didn't have to be spelled out. Though I do think that "Big Nose Kate" should have got a much bigger role.

Since it is based on historical figures you are going to have to deal with some sort of biographical accuracy so that may have been a consideration too. But there you have different interpretations of the story also.

All the above combines into less Iconic characters.

As soon as you mention Wyatt Earp - Doc Holliday (Iconic Western names from long before motion pictures) you have all this historical & preconcieved baggage that goes along with them. It just doesn't or hasn't translated to film that well as of yet.

Take Col. Douglas Mortimer, dressed in black with his arsonal of weapons,  loosely based on what we think of when we think of the Earps, he becomes lightyears more Iconic a film charater than any depiction of the Earps or Doc Holliday has been yet . I would almost venture to say that you could make a more iconic film about Holliday since less is known or has been filmed about him.

The set looked great, and it looked a lot like some photos I've seen of Tombstone circa 1879. The only difference was the main street should have been even wider. Costumes were accurate looking also, though The Earp brothers hats maybe should have had better broken in crowns rather than the rounded "just out of the hat box" tops they sported, they looked more like preachers hats IMO, lol.

As anybody who has worn a cowboy hat or any big brimmed hat for that matter knows you naturally take it off by pinching the crown, and not by taking it off by brim (you don't muss up your hair nearly as much that way, ;-)). They should have looked a bit broken in IMO.  I though that Henry Fonda's Hat in "My Darling Clemetine" was equally goofy looking.

Val Kilmer's Doc was believeable in this, he shines and did a great job portraying a "lunger". I've always had a theory that goes something like this, here is a guy dying of tuberculosis with no future nothing to live for so why not try to go out quickly with a bullet instead (and I think that's sort of what the film was alluding to during his death scene where he thinks its funny that he's dying with his boots off) and this attitude would of course give him an edge over all of his opponents since he wouldn't care and have no fear about dying.

Kurt Russel is equally good as Wyatt, and Sam Elliott as Virgil. Bill Paxton is not that memorable, and what happened to James Earp?, he got left out of this depiction. Anybody recognize Billy Bob Thornton in this? He's a bit chubby and plays the bully faro dealer in the Oriental Saloon that Wyatt slaps around, lol.

Of the villains the Clanton's & McLowery's they are morphed into a gang of thugs called "The Cowboys" who all distinguish themselves from regular cowboys by wearing red sashes around their waists don't know if this is an actual fact or not, but its very Corbucci, lol. Any how in this flick Ike Clanton is depicted as the goof ball, while the real bad ass villians are Curley Bill Brocious (Powers Boothe), and Johnny Ringo (Michael Biehn) and to a lesser extent Billy Clanton (Thomas Hayden Church) They all should probably have gotten more screen time and get a bit more developed.

The score is forgetable also. Its kind of curious that no modern post Leone AW that I know of has given leitmotifs to different characters.

There are some bit parts for Charlton Heston, and Harry Carrey Jr., and a voice over by Robert Mitchum, I think it would have been better to feature them even more.

All in all its entertaining.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: titoli on November 12, 2006, 11:09:46 AM
My sincere compliments for your lesson on hat's brim and crown.

But how do you explain that Hollywood friggers, after all the lessons they should have taken from SW's best practitioners, still goof on such particulars? Can't they afford an Old West expert? (And why don't you propose yourself?: I would, if I had your expertise).



Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on November 12, 2006, 03:23:22 PM
Quote
But how do you explain that Hollywood friggers, after all the lessons they should have taken from SW's best practitioners, still goof on such particulars?

I don't know maybe they were trying to achiveve a different look.

If you ever look at actual photographs from the old West everyone is wearing their hats pushed way back off their foreheads, so maybe you'd think that was the way they wore them... aaaaaaaahhhhhh (you mwould be wrong) ,....... no the photographer most likely told them to push their hats back for the photo, otherwise there would be a shadow over their faces, lol.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: The Peacemaker on November 12, 2006, 03:33:02 PM
I saw Tombstone a while back and I remember enjoying it. Val Kilmer was great as Doc Holliday, and Kurt Russell was good too.

The one problem I had with it was that there were too many romance scenes. I can understand one or two, but c'mon! It's a western, not a romance movie!


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on November 12, 2006, 03:42:18 PM
Quote
I can understand one or two, but c'mon! It's a western, not a romance movie!


Exactly, we need some good ol' politically incorrect, non made by focus group Westerns. This Genre need to get its b*lls back, lol.

Can you imagine an SW with the line by Josephine (Dana Delaney) when she sees Wyatt for the first time "I want one of those", come on, lol


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: The Peacemaker on November 12, 2006, 03:47:11 PM


This Genre need to get its b*lls back, lol.

Exactly!

Westerns made now cater to the crappy B westerns of the 30's. I bet in the next western that comes out the hero will pull out a guitar and start singing to his sweetheart.  ::)


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on November 13, 2006, 03:47:20 AM
 ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on November 13, 2006, 04:16:57 AM
Well thinking about my statement above the film "The Proposition" fit the bill of the template we described, but it never got a decent release here, Whats up with that?

Why aren't these films getting released. I'm believing the theater chains are suspect.
 
Is the distrobution system in this country taken over by the puritains or the holy rollers?


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: TheUgly17 on June 26, 2007, 10:44:29 PM
Tombstone 7-8/10

I went into this movie thinking it would be as kick ass as Young Guns(<3 Young Guns), but not the case. Quite different and too cramed in with killing the cowboys without putting much emotion into anything. Despite being as historical inaccurate as you can be, it was a alright film. Val Kilmer as Doc Holiday stole the show, the damn movie should have just been about him. Kurt Russel didn't live up to Wyatt as I thought he would, and Im a fan of both. The directing wasn't all too impressive either, could have gotten a better director. The film also rushed the vengance ride, hardly introducing the men Wyatt rode with. Powers Boothe was as kickass as a villan as you could get, a good face to see after a week of watching Deadwood nonstop. I probably wouldn't watch it agian if I had the choice unless there was a directors cut with more Doc footage.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Jill on June 27, 2007, 03:25:58 AM
I like Tombstone. There are so few good westerns in 90's, this is one of them...
Val Kilmer is absolutely perfect. Poor Doc...

I hated the Kevin Costner version of Wyatt Earp - very long, very boring...
Gunfight at O.K. Corral was not so good as other Sturges films. And Kirk Douglas as Doc? Laughable. I just can't believe he had any heath problems... too strong man.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Banjo on January 31, 2008, 06:16:46 AM
This was on BBC1 a couple of days ago and i was prompted into watching this from reading Howard Hughes ethusiastic chapter in his latest book on westerns.

I have to agree with the general consensus on this thread that apart from the tedious love interest subplot this is a very good film.The showdown at the OK Coral is undoubtably the highlight of the movie with a great build-up of tension just before the bullets fly.

I'm not a Kurt Russel fan but he is excellent as Wyatt Earp and  Val Kilmer was even better as Doc Holiday.

Its a shame that after the action had died down it ended on such a dull drawn out note with Russel waltzing away  with his floozy etc.

I agree with Cigar Joe that a general Earp legend thread would be fun.I'm kicking myself for not recording Costners version which was also on tv this week. :-[


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: cigar joe on January 31, 2008, 06:30:18 AM
Most folks agree that its the best recreation of the OK gunfight on film.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Ben Tyreen on January 31, 2008, 11:37:26 AM
Quote
Most folks agree that its the best recreation of the OK gunfight on film.

  I prefer the one depicted in Gunfight at the OK Corral, the one that goes on for five plus minutes.  O0  Actually, one I really like is from Hour of the Gun.  The movie begins with the gunfight w/ no explanation just drops the viewer into it right away.  And Tombstone's is probably the best to be fair.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on January 31, 2008, 11:41:21 AM
Most folks agree that its the best recreation of the OK gunfight on film.

It's the most entertaining but the most accurate? I think that's arguable. It's much longer than the real one, and while most of it are accurate a lot is exagerrated - Doc and Wyatt's shooting Billy Clanton about twenty times for instance, and Ike Clanton firing a volley through the window of the photo gallery (all this based on Wyatt's belief that a shot had been fired from a sniper not directly engaged, based on a ricochet sound he heard during the gunfight). Oh, and Doc didn't get hit (he was in the script though). Wyatt Earp's is about as accurate although it gets some details wrong too.

Certainly it's more accurate than the Gunfight at OK Corral and My Darling Clementine but those two films were an absolute joke in terms of historicity so it's not a big accomplishment.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: titoli on December 16, 2008, 01:59:45 PM
Bought the dvd today and played it. It's good but could have been better. I didn't find the love story (except for the episode of the horse race) obtrusive and the female presence is kept within acceptable boundaries. What I didn't like was Kurt Russel: he doesn't look as badass as Earp is supposed to be. I can't even start to compare him with Lancaster or Garner (my favourite) or Fonda. Even Kilmer didn't persuaded me very much: his unhealtiness is too artificial and exaggerated. He doesn't show his lung problems naturally like Robards, but he doesn't look sick like Douglas. And I don't like his musketeer facial hair. Boothe tries to emulate Marvin in LV, as said here already. How can you even start to think you can top (or simply equal) that? By copying some facial expression like opening up your mouth exaggerately? The other ones are good. But of course this is mainly a Earp-Holliday movie, so...
What is missing, I think what all the SW aficionados here miss, is the auto-irony, which is (completely?) absent from recent AW. I don't think Hollywood joked with Far West reality less than italians, but they always had the pretension they were telling the truth. But is that the main reason why we like westerns? Do we really care about how things really went? Maybe, sometime, for a change: but then they should go all the way, which rarely happens.
Which fact brings me also to think that, strangely, nobody has (as far as I know) still thought to tell the story from Clanton's side, BTW. We still are dished the story that Earp told to his first biographer, while things seem not to have been so clear, expecially about the OK Corral affair. So all the new westerns seem to straddle a middle ground between fact and fiction: which could seem apparently a progress from the scrupless (as to adherence to fact) early days before the SW advent, but which always leaves an unsatisfactory aftertaste of unaccomplished.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on December 16, 2008, 04:05:41 PM
I agree with you on Russell, he looks like Earp but he's one of my least favorites. I did enjoy Kilmer's performance as a fun caricature. I think it's interesting that Kevin Costner was approached to do this movie but turned it down for Wyatt Earp; Costner was a much better Earp than Russell IMO, and I think he should have been in the better movie.

Why do we need the story told from the Clanton's POV? The Earps were morally dubious individuals (and Hour of the Gun, Doc and Wyatt Earp all deal with the seemier side of their protagonist), but the Clantons were just thugs and criminals. On the other hand, Terry Ike Clanton (a cousin of the family) wrote a screenplay from the Clanton's POV, so if you have the money to produce it for him feel free.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: titoli on December 16, 2008, 05:06:15 PM
There are still people who think that the OK Corral was a cold-blooded murder. I think there's some kind of memento laid in the area to express this feeling. And also I think that Wyatt Earp is not depicted for the dubious character he really was. This I picked up reading here and there on the internet. These elements have never been given any great relevance in any of the 4-5 movies I saw on the gunfight. And it is strange that, even when debunking myths was the fashion, these angles never were taken into consideration at Hollywood.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 16, 2008, 05:12:40 PM
Terry Ike Clanton (a cousin of the family) wrote a screenplay from the Clanton's POV, so if you have the money to produce it for him feel free.


And we can contact him how?


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Lightnin Rick on December 23, 2008, 09:28:14 AM
You can start here.
http://clantongang.com/oldwest/hauntedsaloonwebcast.html


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on December 23, 2008, 04:30:31 PM
Or the home page:
http://clantongang.com/oldwest/clangen.htm (http://clantongang.com/oldwest/clangen.htm)


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on October 25, 2009, 01:26:13 PM
There are still people who think that the OK Corral was a cold-blooded murder.


Those people are idiots or Clantons. Most people who know better dismiss this idea.

Presumably you haven't seen Doc, which has the Earps blasting the Clantons with shotguns as they try to surrender.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on April 15, 2010, 12:04:51 AM
Interesting comments on the new Blu-ray, here: http://www.thedigitalbits.com/reviewshd/bdreviews041410.html#tom

Looks like I'll be waiting for the "Director's Cut" follow-up release.

And I, like Bill Hunt, hadn't been aware that Kurt Russell actually directed the picture. Interesting . . . .


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on April 15, 2010, 12:28:13 PM
Quote
And I, like Bill Hunt, hadn't been aware that Kurt Russell actually directed the picture.

That depends on who you believe.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: dave jenkins on April 16, 2010, 06:40:27 AM
Bill Hunt, over at thedigitalbits, continues his rant:
Quote
Every great once in a while, you learn something that just blows your mind. You know, changes your perspective. Shifts the landscape. Rocks the ground beneath you. Lifts the veil and reveals Truth. Well... something like that happened to me yesterday. You see, I'm a Tombstone  fan (coming to Blu-ray in on 4/27 in what is essentially a movie-only edition). It's one of my all-time favorite films. But somehow - maybe because those involved worked hard to keep it secret for many years, and the secret was "kept" by Disney's Vista Series  DVD release a few years back... I don't know - somehow, I had no idea that it was Kurt Russell who essentially directed the film, not George P. Cosmatos as credited.

Now, a few of you are probably going, "Yeah, dude... where have you been?" And a few of you may not care about the film to begin with. But I suspect that the rest of you, who ARE fans of Tombstone, might be as stunned as I was. All I can say is, now that I know, all these dominoes have suddenly fallen into place in my mind... and the shock of it has rendered me pretty much incapable of getting any work done today. I'm not kidding: My head is spinning with this revelation. I am in dire need of, and will shortly join my old pal Matt Rowe at the local pub to have, a beer or two to commiserate on the subject.

Upon learning the truth of this film's production late yesterday, I've discovered some interesting reading (with the help of readers) that hints at the film's fascinating behind-the-scenes story - a story that has yet to be properly told on disc. First, Entertainment Weekly magazine published a piece (back in December 1993) about the film's production just prior to its initial theatrical release, which reveals some of the shooting difficulties and battles on the set. (Thanks to Bits reader Ian C. for the link.) Several months later, EW published a second story (in July 1994) on how poorly Kevin Costner's Wyatt Earp film did in the wake of Tombstone's earlier release. Reading the first story, you do learn that Russell stepped in as director for a time, but the full extent of his efforts aren't fully revealed. Both stories hint at Costner's efforts to kill Tombstone, but also don't fully illuminate the situation. Then in late 2006, Henry Cabot Beck (who had visited the set of Tombstone briefly) wrote a surprising piece on the film's production for True West Magazine (the October issue), based on an interview he'd conducted several months earlier (during the shooting of Poseidon) with actor Kurt Russell. Keep in mind that Cosmatos - the credited director of Tombstone - had recently passed away (in April 2005). So in the new True West piece, Russell essentially revealed for the first time in public that yes, he had in fact essentially been the real director of Tombstone, but he'd promised Cosmatos that he wouldn't say anything about it while Cosmatos was still alive. The True West article was also referenced in an online story by Hollywood Elsewhere in September, in which a little background on the interview itself was revealed. Now let me tell you... if you love Tombstone as I do, I strongly encourage you all to check out these articles. They're absolutely fascinating. I should also note that these articles refer to Kevin Jarre's original script for the film. You can read that here at The Daily Script if you're interested. You gotta love the Internet!

Now, here's the thing... there is clearly an amazing and as-yet-untold story behind the making of this film. And these articles suggest that Russell has a ton of outtake and deleted footage from the film, so there's the potential for him to create a whole new and longer cut of the film - a TRUE Director's Cut. In my review of the new Blu-ray, I observed that 2013 is the film's 20th Anniversary. Of course, you know what this means. There absolutely MUST be created, for the anniversary, a new Tombstone: Ultimate Collector's Edition box set on DVD and Blu-ray, with Russell himself directly involved. I'm talking an all-out, balls-out, in-depth, Blade Runner-style special edition. Call it the O.K. Coral edition, package it with a replica of Russell's U.S. Marshal's badge from the film... what have you. But it's gotta have Russell's involvement and commentary, maybe his new cut or at least deleted scenes, and especially an elaborate behind-the-scenes documentary on the true story behind the film's production.


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: Groggy on April 30, 2010, 06:26:54 PM
Powers Boothe weighs in on the director controversy:
http://www.aintitcool.com/node/44840 (http://www.aintitcool.com/node/44840)


Title: Re: Tombstone (1993)
Post by: T.H. on December 31, 2012, 01:36:19 PM
Here's Russell's take. Interesting read. Everything points to him directing the movie.

http://hollywood-elsewhere.com/images/column/93006/russell.pdf