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Films of Sergio Leone => Other Films => Topic started by: Groggy on March 23, 2009, 09:16:52 AM



Title: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on March 23, 2009, 09:16:52 AM
By the Coens, sure, but still...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2009/mar/23/coen-brothers-plan-true-grit-remake (http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2009/mar/23/coen-brothers-plan-true-grit-remake)


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on September 19, 2009, 07:14:54 AM
Jeff Bridges has been reported to be lined up as the lead in the Coen Bros remake of True Grit. It could be interesting to see the result.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on September 19, 2009, 07:26:10 AM
Or even not to see it.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on September 19, 2009, 07:43:53 AM
Hmmm. Well, they did such a good job with Cormic McCarthy that the Coens may actually be ideal for adapting the Portis novel. Not that the Hathaway film did a bad job, it was very faithful. But it might be nice to see Oklahoma playing Oklahoma instead of Colorado playing Oklahoma.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on September 19, 2009, 07:54:40 AM
Also Rooster Cogburn in novel is actually in his 40's I believe, so John Wayne was actually a bit old in the part.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on September 19, 2009, 10:51:02 AM
http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=8234.0 (http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=8234.0)

Although you have gotten replies when I didn't.

Anyway, this just doesn't sound like a good idea. Bridges is not the Duke, and the Coens botched their last attempt at a remake, so count me out.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Peacemaker on September 19, 2009, 11:44:13 AM
I think this sounds like an excellent idea. Seeing how this will be more faithful to the novel hence the realism which the Duke film lacked. I still enjoy the original but if the Coen Brothers play their cards right, this may very well exceed the original in terms of quality.

A few things I hope for are:
1) dropping the romanticized optimism and replacing it with some "true grit"

2) give the role of Mattie to someone who won't annoy the sh*t out of you every time she's on screen

3) keep the period dialogue (that's one thing the original got right)

4) And my biggest gripe, give the character of Tom Chaney more screen time and make him menacing (there's no real tension when you have John Wayne going up against a scrawny little weasel who looks like he can be pushed over with the touch of a finger and whines about the world hating him).


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on September 19, 2009, 12:01:42 PM
I agree that the original ain't perfect - looking at you, Kim Darby and Glenn Campbell - but still a solid Western on the whole.

It seemed to me that Ned Peppers (Duvall's character) was the main bad guy rather than Chaney so I don't really mind that much.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Peacemaker on September 19, 2009, 12:25:40 PM

It seemed to me that Ned Peppers (Duvall's character) was the main bad guy rather than Chaney so I don't really mind that much.

I didn't think so, I still consider Chaney to be the true villain of the film even though Ned Pepper is his superior. When we see Mattie with Ned in the hideout, from what he says we begin to perceive him more of an anti-hero than a villain. Although he is only concerned about saving his own skin, he never has or never wants to hurt a young girl unlike Tom Chaney who has every intention of doing so. Besides, we don't see Pepper commit any evil acts unlike Chaney whom we know to have done some dastardly deeds.


Hence we need to have an actor who brings strong menace to the character. A weakling like the guy who originally played Tom Chaney kind of undermines the significance of the marshal's pursuit of him (through the audience's eyes at least).


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on September 23, 2009, 05:42:26 PM
http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=8234.0 (http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=8234.0)
Anyway, this just doesn't sound like a good idea. Bridges is not the Duke, and the Coens botched their last attempt at a remake, so count me out.
Are you talking about The Ladykillers? I don't think they wrote that one. There's a couple in there where they filmed other people's scripts, and I don't consider them true Coen Bros. films. This new one should be all right if they write it themselves.

And the whole thing about Bridges not being the Duke . . .  Hathaway's film was shaped to accommodate Wayne, and it worked well, but it was a distortion of the original novel. I admire Portis's novel very much (I teach it) and I'd like to see what can be done with a more faithful interpretation of Rooster. So count me in.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on September 24, 2009, 12:58:54 AM
Is Bridges going to shout "Fill yur hands you sonvabitch!" ?

And if he is... how is he going to top the Dukes delivery of said line?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on September 24, 2009, 10:27:51 AM
More rasp?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on October 27, 2009, 07:11:15 PM
http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/true_grit/news/1852179/exclusive_coen_brothers_talk_true_grit (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/true_grit/news/1852179/exclusive_coen_brothers_talk_true_grit)

I like the proposed casting (Bridges, Damon and Brolin), but I think Mattie will be key. Kim Darby was perhaps the worst part of the original, hopefully they can find someone less obnoxious this time around.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on October 27, 2009, 08:04:57 PM
Kim Darby was perhaps the worst part of the original, hopefully they can find someone less obnoxious this time around.
Well, not less obnoxious, just obnoxious in a different way. If you check out the book you'll see that Mattie is pretty annoying, and I'm sure the Coens will want to be true to their source.

That's a pretty interesting article, Grogs, thanks for the link. I think the piece deserves to be copied into the record, though, so I'm posting it here:


Quote
Exclusive: Coen Brothers Talk True Grit
An update on casting and their take on the tale.
by Chris Tilly | October 27, 2009


With the trades this morning carrying a casting announcement for the Coen brothers adaptation of True Grit, RT decided to go straight to the horses' mouths and ask the siblings about the news and their plans for the story.

According to Variety, Jeff Bridges will play U.S. marshal Rooster Cogburn (John Wayne in the original) while Matt Damon is in talks to play the lawman and Josh Brolin is up for the role of the killer. Joel confirmed the story to RT, "Yes, Jeff, Matt and Josh, that's true - something that you read in the trades that actually turns out to be true!"

The 1969 original film was loosely based on the novel by Charles Portis, and revolved around a young girl hiring Cogburn to track down the man who killed her father. According to Ethan, this new version will be much closer to the source material. "It's partly a question of point-of-view" the writer-director explained. "The book is entirely in the voice of the 14-year-old girl. That sort of tips the feeling of it over a certain way.

"I think it's much funnier than the movie was so I think unfortunately they lost a lot of humour in both the situations and in her voice. It also ends differently than the movie did. You see the main character - the little girl - 25 years later when she's an adult."

He continued, "Another way in which it's a little bit different from the movie - and maybe this is just because of the time the movie was made - is that it's a lot tougher and more violent than the movie reflects. Which is part of what's interesting about it."

Joel added, "I don't actually remember the movie too well, but do I remember it being much more of a standard Western, and the book is just an oddity. It's a very odd book."


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on October 27, 2009, 09:23:47 PM
Also Rooster Cogburn in novel is actually in his 40's I believe, so John Wayne was actually a bit old in the part.

True Grit was released in 1969 when John Wayne was 62, while the remake is set to be released in 2011 when Jeff Bridges will be also 62 (or a few months shy). Funny.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on October 28, 2009, 03:33:42 AM
True Grit was released in 1969 when John Wayne was 62, while the remake is set to be released in 2011 when Jeff Bridges will be also 62 (or a few months shy). Funny.
62 is the new 40? Ha!


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on October 28, 2009, 11:39:37 AM
Hah, yeah, you wish. :-*


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on October 28, 2009, 11:57:17 AM
62 is the new 40? Ha!

There's hope for Jinkies yet!


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on May 12, 2010, 02:19:29 PM
Yes, yes, yes!
http://www.onlocationvacations.com/2010/05/04/first-look-at-jeff-bridges-as-roooster-cogburn-on-the-set-of-true-grit/


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: stanton on May 13, 2010, 03:00:39 AM
I've read somewhere (don't ask me where) that the novel was already written with John Wayne in the mind.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on May 13, 2010, 05:58:34 PM
No, I don't think that's true. It was Portis's second novel, but the first was so obscure that he had little hope of a film sale for the second. And it's not a typical genre novel, either. I kind of doubt he was thinking of a Hollywood adaptation as he wrote it. However, his agent must have seen the potential . . .


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: stanton on May 14, 2010, 02:24:23 AM
I haven't said that it was only written to become a film, but he had Wayne in his mind when conceiving the Rooster Cogburn character. Maybe a younger Wayne.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Whalestoe on August 14, 2010, 10:57:03 PM
http://www.hitfix.com/blogs/awards-campaign-2009/posts/first-look-jeff-bridges-and-his-eyepatch-in-the-coen-bros-remake-of-true-grit

Pictures.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on August 16, 2010, 03:45:51 AM
Cool! The girl unfortunatly gives a TV movie look to the visual though.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on August 16, 2010, 01:13:50 PM
Yeah, there must be some kind of factory that stamps these kids out. She may end up being okay, though.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Cusser on August 17, 2010, 07:48:23 AM
The girl in the first True Grit (Kim Darby?) was so annoying that I wanted to put on my golf shoes and walk across her face....


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on August 17, 2010, 10:26:22 AM
The new one doesn't look as annoying as that :)


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on August 17, 2010, 01:52:03 PM
Once again, Mattie Ross, as written, is an annoying character. That's why she grows up to be an old maid. To present her as an appealing Disney-style heroine is to get the character completely wrong.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on August 17, 2010, 02:33:22 PM
That doesn't by any stretch of the imagination mean that the novel can't be improved through adaptation by altering some elements of the source material.

In any event, Kim Darby is not a very good actress regardless of whether Mattie was supposed to be annoying.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on August 17, 2010, 03:30:04 PM
That doesn't by any stretch of the imagination mean that the novel can't be improved through adaptation by altering some elements of the source material.
You're obviously unfamiliar with the source material.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on August 17, 2010, 03:31:43 PM
In any event, Kim Darby is not a very good actress regardless of whether Mattie was supposed to be annoying.
Possibly. Her performance in TG is, nonetheless, her career best.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: stanton on August 18, 2010, 05:35:38 AM
I thought Darby was pretty good in True Grit.

And I think, apart from the first 5 min, it is a very well made film. Hathaway's best western, maybe his best film at all. I have read the book also many years ago, but I prefer the film. Similar case is Hombre. Both films owe there novel sources a lot, but both are more fascinating than the books.

The first 5 min of TG seem to be made a decade earlier, and they are also totally superfluous. The film could very well begin with the arrival of the train in Fort Smith. Everything which was shown and said in these 5 min is said and shown again later in the film. In fact it would be more interesting if we at the beginning don't know what Mattie is after.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on August 18, 2010, 07:31:14 AM
Possibly. Her performance in TG is, nonetheless, her career best.

Considering her career that's no real accomplishment.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on August 18, 2010, 08:22:59 AM
Will Mattie lose her arm this time? I hope not.

I am curious about this movie. And still can't imagine anybody equalling Wayne: and this was Wayne's movie par excellence. The movie will be good, but no history-making. Hope I'm wrong.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: stanton on August 18, 2010, 02:11:42 PM
Jeff Bridges is a good choice imo


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on August 18, 2010, 03:47:19 PM
Jeff Bridges is a good choice imo

Even in mine. But we're talking about John Wayne's greatest performance.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on August 18, 2010, 04:33:57 PM
Yea it will be hard to top, but anybody else but Glen Campbell should be good.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on August 18, 2010, 04:34:17 PM
John Wayne was great in TG, but he was playing John Wayne. I'm hoping Bridges will be playing Rooster Cogburn.

Also, that they are filming in Oklahoma instead of Colorado this time.

And yes, it's essential that Mattie lose her arm.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on August 18, 2010, 07:14:06 PM
John Wayne was great in TG, but he was playing John Wayne. I'm hoping Bridges will be playing Rooster Cogburn.

I'm afraid that wouldn't be sufficient to make the character as memorable. And it is not completely true that Wayne was simply playing Wayne: his character was markedly different from those he had played earlier. 
 
Quote
And yes, it's essential that Mattie loses her arm.

I hope she doesn't.



Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on August 19, 2010, 03:32:53 AM
Yeah I also like Jeff Bridges. Not only is he the best choice by far but also the only one around too... :-X


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Peacemaker on August 19, 2010, 12:49:32 PM
I'm happy that they'll have Josh Brolin as the main villain Tom Chaney rather than that unfamiliar face that played him in the original. In the '69 version of TG, they had Chaney as a bit part and played the character off as a weak little sapling. This time around, I think the Coen's will get it right. If Brolin's playing Chaney, it won't be a small part and he'll at least have a presence.

Plus I think the original version was too white-washed. This version I think the movie will finally live up to the title and actually show some grit.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on August 19, 2010, 01:51:23 PM
Jeff Corey an "unfamiliar" face? Daft.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on August 19, 2010, 03:27:55 PM
Jeff Corey an "unfamiliar" face? Daft.
Seconded!


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on September 27, 2010, 03:49:21 PM
UP! trailer available:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uco41pOKeJg&feature=player_embedded


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on September 27, 2010, 03:55:41 PM
Well, it LOOKS good. But what the hell happened to the language?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on September 27, 2010, 04:59:26 PM
does look good  O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on September 27, 2010, 05:44:26 PM
It looks like No Country for Old Men, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford or Appaloosa, doesn't it?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on September 27, 2010, 06:20:31 PM
Just to remind you what we are talking about.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tN-j4GDqjv4&NR=1

In my opinion Wayne and Darby have already won hands down. The movie looks like it's gonna get better shot, better scored (no hard task), better acted in the minor parts: but simply not as entertaining as the older version.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on September 27, 2010, 09:03:38 PM
Looks pretty meh to me.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: moviesceleton on September 27, 2010, 11:09:01 PM
Looks good.  O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Whalestoe on September 28, 2010, 01:01:38 AM
That trailer need a little more grit.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on September 28, 2010, 02:34:21 AM
If it was not for the first line uttered by Bridges (which sounds really fake to me), I'd say
there is a good chance the Dude beats the Duke.

Completely random question: I rewatched the original movie's trailer... Was it the first time in movie history that a character reloads his Winchester-type gun with only one hand?  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tN-j4GDqjv4&feature=player_embedded 2:44 or 3:07 (you know, like in T2)


It looks like No Country for Old Men, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford or Appaloosa, doesn't it?

I'd say No Country for Old Men for sure, with a bit of the quiet feeling from Jesse James.
I sure hope it's nothing like Appaloosa, where they forgot to hire a director, a scriptwriter and a composer.

That trailer need a little more grit.

Yep.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: moviesceleton on September 28, 2010, 02:48:18 AM
Just to remind you what we are talking about.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tN-j4GDqjv4&NR=1

In my opinion Wayne and Darby have already won hands down. The movie looks like it's gonna get better shot, better scored (no hard task), better acted in the minor parts: but simply not as entertaining as the older version.
I haven't seen the original version but I just watched the trailer. If the music in it is used in the movie too, the guy responsible for it deserves to be shot.

Completely random question: I rewatched the original movie's trailer... Was it the first time in a movie that we see a character reloading his sawed off Winchester with only one hand? (you know, like in T2)
I don't know. But isn't it something of a western cliche? I find it hard to believe that it would have been introduced as late as 1969.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on September 28, 2010, 02:50:08 AM
I would find it late too, but, on the other hand... I cannot think of any earlier example. Grog, DJ, CJ, any idea?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on September 28, 2010, 04:57:03 AM
I think Wayne did it before, could be even in Stagecoach, but don't quote me on that, with all the films and TV Westerns out there it seams as if it could have been earlier.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: moviesceleton on September 28, 2010, 05:53:05 AM
I think Wayne did it before, could be even in Stagecoach, but don't quote me on that, with all the films and TV Westerns out there it seams as if it could have been earlier.
It's in Stagecoach: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Pu9V85Njg8


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on September 28, 2010, 06:02:02 AM
That trailer need a little more grit.
Now's a good time to remember that the people who make the film don't make the trailer. I'm still hoping for the best.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on September 28, 2010, 07:02:15 AM
If it was not for the first line uttered by Bridges (which sounds really fake to me), I'd say
there is a good chance the Dude beats the Duke.

Could you please elaborate on that?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Whalestoe on September 28, 2010, 09:49:14 AM
Now's a good time to remember that the people who make the film don't make the trailer. I'm still hoping for the best.

That's true, but I'm just being a stick in the mud!!! :D I've been pretty excited to see any previews for this, but that left me underwhelmed. Perhaps it's best to have my expectations lowered after seeing A Serious Man.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on September 28, 2010, 10:55:25 AM
I'd say No Country for Old Men for sure, with a bit of the quiet feeling from Jesse James.
I sure hope it's nothing like Appaloosa, where they forgot to hire a director, a scriptwriter and a composer.

The looks of most Ws made nowadays just don't look right to me. I know, on a certain - exclusively aesthetic - level they at first glance do seem better movies, but when you dig into them the feel isn't right.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on September 28, 2010, 11:01:36 AM
Completely random question: I rewatched the original movie's trailer... Was it the first time in movie history that a character reloads his Winchester-type gun with only one hand?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tN-j4GDqjv4&feature=player_embedded 2:44 or 3:07 (you know, like in T2)

Intro to the TV series ''The Rifleman'', with Chuck Connors (late 50s - early 60s): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9IVCwYPjFXc

Yippie-ki-yay.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on September 28, 2010, 05:06:47 PM
It's in Stagecoach: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Pu9V85Njg8

How 'bout that, the old memory is still intact, lol.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on September 28, 2010, 05:32:18 PM
How 'bout that, the old memory is still intact, lol.

 O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on September 29, 2010, 12:48:46 AM
How 'bout that, the old memory is still intact, lol.

 O0 O0

Could you please elaborate on that?

Well... According to what we see, and exept with his first line, Bridges looks very good, and he could play the part better than Wayne did. Now I'm not going to argue on that particular point from a trailer that doesn't really show the characters............... We'll kill each other next Christmas.

The looks of most Ws made nowadays just don't look right to me. I know, on a certain - exclusively aesthetic - level they at first glance do seem better movies, but when you dig into them the feel isn't right.

I understand what you mean, and I have to disagree for No Country For Old Men. I really find that particular feel you're talking about in this movie.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Peacemaker on September 29, 2010, 03:15:13 PM
I'm beyond excited about this! I got goosebumps when I saw Bridges firing away on horseback with the reins between his teeth. I'm happy knowing the horse charge climax will be in the remake.



Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Whalestoe on October 02, 2010, 03:42:56 PM
The extended True Grit trailer that played in front of The Social Network works much better in my opinion. It actually got my excited for this again.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on October 11, 2010, 09:42:46 AM
Yeah I saw the full-length trailer at The Social Network too. My reaction was the opposite: it seemed like 90% of the dialogue was identical to the original. Doesn't inspire confidence in me.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on October 11, 2010, 04:51:22 PM
Yeah I saw the full-length trailer at The Social Network too. My reaction was the opposite: it seemed like 90% of the dialogue was identical to the original. Doesn't inspire confidence in me.
Jeeze, Groggy, we want them to use Portis's dialogue. That's what makes the material distinctive.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on October 11, 2010, 06:23:07 PM
But what's the point? Why should I see this remake when the original's perfectly fine on that score?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on October 12, 2010, 05:34:48 AM
I for one want to see if they can adequately portray Eastern Oklahoma (rather than Colorado). Also, Bridge's line readings will be, perforce, very different from the Duke's. And there's a couple of plot points that need correcting . . .

So, are you saying, because we have Olivier's Hamlet we need no others?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on October 12, 2010, 09:48:26 AM
*snort*


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on October 21, 2010, 02:09:06 AM
Extended trailer:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8QLMWN0yNs

Probably a more "regular" editing, but it makes the whole thing look a bit warmer ("gritier" would be too strong) if you see what I mean.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on October 21, 2010, 12:56:30 PM
Beautiful images. But now I can see that I don't like Brolin either. The music sucks (Cash apart). Bridges may be the real Cogburn but the superficial impression is that he just tries to imitate Wayne. The girl Mattie, bahh, please.

P.S. Are we sure Damon is better than Campbell? 


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on October 21, 2010, 01:04:28 PM
Well, for a start you can't really judge the music. I don't see why people don't understand that trailer music is generally recycled from earlier soundtracks.

I've come around on Damon in the past few years so I'm not too worried there. Same with Brolin. I will agree with you on Bridges and whomever is playing Mattie.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on October 21, 2010, 01:45:03 PM
+1 for Mattie


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Jill on November 13, 2010, 10:59:59 AM
Will watch definitely... didn't see the original. Not a big fan of the Duke. I'll see after the movie if I want the original.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 03, 2010, 02:38:31 PM
I like the John Wayne original (although why he won the Oscar for it still baffles me, if anything he deserved it years earlier for THE SEARCHERS) and I like John Wayne.
That said, I'm looking forward to the Coen Brother's version.

My only contention with this whole remake business is this weird campaign they're going with.
Damon has said the Coen's are going a different route and focusing more on the source material.
Big talk from a man who claims to be informed but knows little to nothing.
The John Wayne original is incredibly faithful to the Portis novel.

The only major exception is Labeouf surviving and the final chapter spans many years until Rooster's death.
Every other differance between the film and novel (season, setting) are minutiae.

Clearly Damon has not seen the Wayne movie or read the novel or both.
Unfortunately, the Coen fans have been spewing the same bile.
This is the kind of stuff I don't care for.

Both trailers for the remake indicate that what we will be getting this December is the same film from 69' but with much better cinematography and, possibly, performances.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 03, 2010, 04:40:53 PM
The John Wayne original is incredibly faithful to the Portis novel.

The only major exceptions is Labeouf surviving and the final chapter spans many years until Rooster's death.
Every other differance between the film and novel (season, setting) are minutiae.

I hope Jenkins won't read this.   :-\

Both trailers for the remake indicate that what we will be getting this December is the same film from 69' but with much better cinematography and, possibly, performances.

Impossibly for Cogburn and Mattie. I can't understand how Wayne can be so belittled. And for one of his best performances ever (in my book this is possibly the best) at that.

In Italy it will be released in January.  A wise decision not to burn it against the xmas idiocies.




Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 03, 2010, 05:56:01 PM
I hope Jenkins won't read this.   :-\

I hope he does.

As for the Coen camp claiming authenticity, in the script there is a man in a bear coat who collects teeth.
Where did that come from? Not the Portis novel.
When I first saw the jarring image of the bear riding the horse in the trailer I just assumed it was the Original Greaser Bob's bear skin coat.
I was wrong.


Impossibly for Cogburn and Mattie.

Duke gives a good performance I just don't think it's better than some of his previous roles.
Mattie is a step back. We now have a girl who looks like Wednesday Addams.
Darby at least looked the part, even with the Lesbian haircut.

My comment about better performances is mostly to do with Campbell.
I've never liked that Damon character but certainly he can deliver us a better Lebouf.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 03, 2010, 06:40:26 PM
Duke gives a good performance I just don't think it's better than some of his previous roles.
Mattie is a step back. We now have a girl who looks like Wednesday Addams.
Darby at least looked the part, even with the Lesbian haircut.


Lesbian haircut? My god, you're twisted! She's very feminine, I think the girl they picked up for this looks much more artificial (and apparently she can't play for life). 

My comment about better performances is mostly to do with Campbell.
I've never liked that Damon character but certainly he can deliver us a better Lebouf.

That would be no great feat. But the story is mostly about Rooster and Mattie, who cares about Leboeuf?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 03, 2010, 08:31:05 PM
I think the girl they picked up for this looks much more artificial

Agreed.


(and apparently she can't play for life). 


That's too early to tell for me.


who cares about Leboeuf?

Good point but Campbell gives such a performance that it really brings the movie down a notch.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 04, 2010, 12:36:27 AM
... but Campbell gives such a performance that it really brings the movie down a notch.

I could counter that Duvall compensates for that notch. But I think you're exaggerating things by valuing so much the non Mattie and Cogburn roles that much. The novel doesn't.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on December 04, 2010, 03:56:01 AM
I think we'll have to wait & see.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 05, 2010, 02:55:23 PM
early review: http://kylesmithonline.com/?p=7335

There is no doubt some truth to what this guy says, but even without seeing the film I can already take exception to some of this review, as for example:

Quote
There’s an utterly useless scene in the second hour in which Cogburn and the Texas Ranger once played by Glen Campbell and now by Matt Damon, compete to shoot objects they toss in the air — and keep missing. Ha, ha. The scene doesn’t advance the plot, it’s wrong for the characters (we have just seen Rooster do some nifty shooting in the dark, and soon we will see the Ranger do a nice bit of sniping as well), it isn’t funny and it drags. It seems to be there solely because the Coens are trying to do a low-comedy scene that’ll play to the multiplex crowd in the middle of the country.

No, the scene is in the movie because it's in the book. It is one of those unconventional moments that Mr. Smith says he's looking for in a Coens film. Mattie is anxious to get back on the trail after Tom Chaney, but the rest of her party are not filled with the same sense of moral urgency. They'll go after their man in good time, but to them it's just a job. It's easy for them to get sidetracked. The shooting contest is mindless entertainment for men who don't yet have wi-fi. It's something to do to distract from the long hours they must put in tracking men. If I remember right, Cogburn has been drinking, and of course with one eye his depth perception isn't great. It's a lot easier to hit a man, even in the dark, then a small object moving through the air. So there's no reason why the men can't be good shots in some scenes and not in others. Anyway, the scene serves to show Mattie's impatience in the face of the professional's indifference. Maybe the Coens blow the scene, but I'm glad it's in the film. At least it shows they were trying to get Portis's novel right.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 05, 2010, 03:19:12 PM
I fear this critics review may be right.
He's wrong about the scene you mentioned but everything else seems like it may come to pass.
Although the way he describes Chaney seems like he's wrong about that as well.
Chaney, in both the novel and Wayne movie, is a pathetic character not a criminal mastermind.
"Goofball" is the wrong word but I see what he means.

So according to this review were getting Chaney the way he should be, yet again.
After watching the trailer I thought they were going a different route with the character because he utters the line "I do not regret killing your father" giving me the impression he is much more ruthless this time around.

In both the novel and Wayne film he never says that.
In fact, he expresses remorse for murdering Mattie's papi.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on December 05, 2010, 04:52:15 PM
That comment on the article made me laugh:

schizuki Says:
December 5th, 2010 at 1:41 pm
Next up: “Dirty Harry” starring Christian Bale.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 06, 2010, 09:08:28 AM
Similarly, during a restaging of Rooster’s climactic ride against four outlaws, the Coens simply seem to be going for a rousing blockbustery action scene — the first time they’ve ever done this, I think. But the scene isn’t well shot or cut, it doesn’t have John Wayne, it’s nothing special. It feels like a rehash rather than an update or a reimagining.

This is the most significant of all things the guy writes. And it also explains why the movie shoudln't have been remade. Which is what I thought when I first heard of this. As one of the comments (echoing the words of Larry Holmes about Marciano) clearly explains: Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin all together can’t hold John Wayne’s jock strap.
We're talking often about western mythology and that is no nonsense. The relevance of those actors, as far as western movies are concerned, is next to nothing. I don't think that who is going to see the movie doesn't know anything about westerns. He probably does. And he probably knows what John Wayne means for the genre and is fascinated by his screen presence. And that ends the story.         

The guy admittedly didn't read the novel but he knows the original movie: which is what is important. Only 99% or more of the audience won't have read the novel: and it is this audience the movie caters to. That means that the inclusion of scenes taken from the novel is justified only if it helps to make a better movie. Which doesn't seem to be the case.



Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on December 06, 2010, 10:22:42 AM
Incredible: Titoli has a point there.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 06, 2010, 10:50:01 AM
Yeah, but we still have to wait for the movie . . .


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 06, 2010, 01:19:04 PM
Incredible: Titoli has a point there.

Which one? I made so many.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 06, 2010, 01:27:03 PM
Yeah, but we still have to wait for the movie . . .

Ohh, come on...I can't believe you're nurturing so many hopes about this...

May John Wayne forgive all ya miscreants.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on December 06, 2010, 01:33:43 PM
Incredible: Titoli has a point there.

It's scary to think of what he'll have to say and point out when he actually sees the movie. :D


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 07, 2010, 12:20:59 AM
Which one? I made so many.

I think Noodles was just impressed with the overall statement.
You make a lot of sense.
This remake may be more useless than I fear.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on December 21, 2010, 05:41:46 PM
Very impressed. Anyway:

http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20101221/REVIEWS/101229997

Ebert's review.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 21, 2010, 08:27:01 PM
Very impressed.
You saw it?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Peacemaker on December 21, 2010, 10:12:29 PM
I'll be seeing this tomorrow @ midnight with a huge group of friends. It's gonna be awesome! In fact, I'll be watching it in exactly 24 hours.  8)


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on December 22, 2010, 03:15:41 AM
@DJ: no no (the movie won't be released here before february, I guess) I was still talking about Titoli's statement. By the way, Ebert answers to Titoli in his review: Bridge isn't supposed to compete with Wayne, he's supposed to play the part. If that's true, that's ok with me. The problem is that it's not what we can see in the trailer. Will watch the movie for sure anyway. And I will probably buy the DVD or the BR anyway too.

@Peacemaker: cannot wait for your feedback!


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 22, 2010, 07:04:39 AM
I'll be seeing this tomorrow @ midnight with a huge group of friends. It's gonna be awesome! In fact, I'll be watching it in exactly 24 hours.  8)

Lucky! I probably won't get to see it until January.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 22, 2010, 07:07:41 AM
By the way, Ebert answers to Titoli in his review: Bridge isn't supposed to compete with Wayne, he's supposed to play the part. If that's true, that's ok with me. The problem is that it's not what we can see in the trailer.

True, and this is my biggest misgiving. It looks, at times, almost verbatim the original film. While Jinkies can get thrilled about the dialogue or whatever, I take more of a "what's the point?" attitude when the remake seems that close to the original. I hope we're not talking about a Gus Van Sant situation.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Peacemaker on December 23, 2010, 02:15:39 PM
Well, having seen the film I can say that my friends and I came to a general consensus...good but not great.

True Grit unfortunately left me a bit disappointed. The pros were as following: an amazing level of authenticity in every department (acting, costume & set design, etc.), great acting from everyone; I thought the roles of Mattie Ross, LaBeof, and Tom Chaney were all vast improvements over the original, a good score and decent direction.

Now the cons which ultimately weigh the movie down: Much of the story dragged. The story dwelled too much on the town scenes rather than getting out on the trail. Of course both the novel and the original film do this too, however the town scenes in the original film were more entertaining whereas this film they dragged them on for far too long. The action scenes were very dull and very sparse with almost no tension built up to enhance them (a Leone no-no), the climax felt so anti-climatic and rushed. And finally, my biggest gripe is with Brolin's character. His version of the dim-witted maniac Tom Chaney is so awesome, and they spend the entire film hyping the character up only for him to appear for five minutes. This is one of the elements I was rather excited about and I felt absolutely cheated.

Overall, I enjoyed the film. I'm certainly glad I saw it, however I felt the original believe it or not was better (I certainly was not expecting that to happen.) I look forward to seeing what others thought of the movie.


P.S. - as for Rooster Cogburn, I really liked Bridge's interpretation of the character, however I though John Wayne's rendition was far superior.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 23, 2010, 05:06:00 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/22/movies/22true.html?_r=1&emc=eta1


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 23, 2010, 05:08:30 PM
True Grit (2010) - 9/10. Funny in that grimly humorous Coens way, with excellent performances by all concerned. Bridges is particularly good, but the kid playing Mattie is the star--and it's Mattie's story this time, not a vehicle for the male lead (not that there was anything wrong with that approach). The Coens have changed the story at certain points: in some cases to add the odd cameos they so like, in others for no apparent reason than to depart from the earlier version of the film so that their telling will be certain to stand on its own. This works sometimes, but often these changes are not an improvement, and sometimes even annoying (there are not one but TWO occasions where LeBoeuf breaks with Cogburn and rides off. Once would have been dramatically effective, but a second time?).  And the music disappoints: I'm not a big Carter Burwell fan, but in most of the Coens' flims his scores are unobtrusive. This time out, he's decided to use the melody of "Leaning On the Everlasting Arms" as a motif, not bad in itself, but he really runs it into the ground, and then over the closing credits we have to listen to Dolly Parton sing her rendition. Uhhh . . . On the positive side of the ledger, the Coens restore Portis's epilogue, so we get the moment when the adult Mattie talks to Cole Younger and then tells Frank James to "Keep your seat, trash." Naturally, Deakins' camera work is top notch (all should see the film projected digitally), although I was disappointed to learn that New Mexico was playing Oklahoma this time (I guess there's some reason why Oklahoma can't play Oklahoma). Anyway, the Hathaway version will probably remain my favorite, but this is a worthy successor.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 24, 2010, 01:24:14 PM
This wasn't better than the original nor was the original better than this film.
They both triumph where the other fails.

This new one is good overall but it has its problems.
The dialogue, though period, is sometimes lost to the actors (particularly Damon who flubs several of his lines) this wasn't a problem 40 years ago in the Wayne movie.
Also there are many scenes that deviate from the Portis novel that feel unnecessary or just plain stupid.
Take for example the scene where Cogburn breaks off with the gang (which reminded me of every 2/3rds of the way in romantic comedy I can think of) and Lebouf and Mattie have a "moment".

There is also some embarrassing CGI utilized towards the end.

pros out weigh the cons though and it's a solid piece of work.

8/10


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on December 24, 2010, 01:24:52 PM
oh, and Darby was better than Wednesday Addams.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on December 25, 2010, 06:21:55 PM
oh, and Darby was better than Wednesday Addams.

lol, you know reading the NY Times review that's exactly the thought that crossed my mind, that Mattie came off sounding like Wednesday Addams.

I'll probably see in in the next couple of days.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 26, 2010, 01:01:30 PM
Anyway, the Hathaway version will probably remain my favorite...


So you really expected this to be better?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 26, 2010, 01:03:26 PM
Well, having seen the film I can say that my friends and I came to a general consensus...good but not great.


Overall, I enjoyed the film. I'm certainly glad I saw it, however I felt the original believe it or not was better (I certainly was not expecting that to happen.) I look forward to seeing what others thought of the movie.


P.S. - as for Rooster Cogburn, I really liked Bridge's interpretation of the character, however I though John Wayne's rendition was far superior.

Your review sounds like mine.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 26, 2010, 01:05:27 PM
oh, and Darby was better than Wednesday Addams.

Tell you what: this is much more appetizing than the original Addams.   


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 26, 2010, 01:10:38 PM
Anyway:

http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20101221/REVIEWS/101229997

Ebert's review.

So Iggy Pop can sing...


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 27, 2010, 04:15:13 PM
Groggy sez:

Quote
It’s not hard to fathom why new Westerns are scarce. Modern society is far too PC for traditional frontier mythology to gain wide appeal, and the slew of comic and revisionist Westerns since the ‘60s played out the alternate approach. Recent efforts highlight the genre’s dilution: The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is an odd bird, more a moody period drama than a Western, which was barely released. Weird genre hybrids like Wild, Wild West, Jonah Hex and the upcoming Cowboys and Aliens alienate Western fans and ordinary viewers alike. Even the action-packed, star-studded 3:10 to Yuma remake did only modest business. In any case, few of these films are really Westerns; even more traditional oaters like Appaloosa know the words but not the music.

For this reason, the Coen Brothers's True Grit is a breath of fresh air, a wonderful oater that actually feels like a Western. Purists and genre fans moaning about remaking the venerable John Wayne vehicle can rest easy; the new version greatly surpasses the original, and may well be the best Western in the past thirty years or so.

Headstrong 14 year old Mattie Ross (Hailee Steinfeld) arrives at Ft. Smith, Arkansas, looking for Tom Chaney (Josh Brolin), a surly drifter who murdered her father. Mattie enlists the reluctant help of Rooster Cogburn (Jeff Bridges), a one-eyed, drunken lout of a lawman, to track Chaney into Indian Territory and bring him to justice. Joining them is LaBeouf (Matt Damon), a cocky Texas Ranger trailing Chaney for a separate crime. Cogburn and LaBeouf bicker with each other and Mattie, who demands to be taken along, and find that Chaney has hooked up with Ned Pepper (Barry Pepper), an outlaw with a grudge against Rooster.

The original True Grit is no masterpiece. John Wayne's fun, Oscar-winning performance aside, it's a fairly routine oater marred by two utterly atrocious performances by Kim Darby and Glenn Campbell. Many complain about remakes out of principle, which is silly: even ostensibly "original" films crib heavily from earlier movies, making such a complaint irrelevant. (How much does Unforgiven borrow from The Gunfighter, for instance?) Most remakes are risible because they lazily appropriate the original's title for name recognition: good ones find some new angle or approach to justify revisiting a previously-told tale. Such is the case with True Grit.

The Coens build on the original film (and the Charles Portis novel), turning it from a passable star vehicle into something grand. Long dialogue passages are appropriated verbatim from the Wayne version, but in the Coens's hands they have a lot more bite and raw humor, resulting in a surprisingly funny film. The three protagonists are more vividly rendered, with added scenes - especially the shooting contest - providing texture and depth without distracting from the narrative. Refusing to cop to political correctness, the Coens draw uncomfortable laughs with Rooster's racist treatment of Indians and vulgarity. Most of the flaws, like the colorless villains, are inherent in the source material. I'm hardly the Coens's biggest fan, but I must admit their style and quirks perfectly suit this material, capturing the spirit of a classic Western better than any director since Clint Eastwood.

Their direction is equally assured: the movie is perfectly paced, with long dialogue scenes meshing effortlessly with shootouts and travel montages, and beautiful cinematography by Roger Deakins gives the film an epic scope. The movie is authentic and gripping without the stuffy feel and pretentious posturing of, say, Jesse James. The final showdown with Pepper ("Fill your hands, you son of a bitch!") is especially inspired, staged in truly mythic style, and Chaney's comeuppance is far more satisfying despite his marginal role in the story. Carter Burwell's score is rather bland, a minor blip all things considered.

Jeff Bridges is brilliant. Wisely, Bridges plays Rooster as far from the Duke's interpretation as possible, emphasizing his seamier side: the slovenly, racist, hard-drinking, trigger-happy survivor of Quantrill's Raiders, who nonetheless comes through in the clutch. Bridges gives the role his all, with the right mixture of grim humor and irreverence, and he somehow manages to upstage even John Wayne. This Dude abides.

Opposite Bridges, newcomer Hailee Steinfeld is pitch-perfect. She proves that the problem with the original was not Mattie Ross, but Kim Darby; Steinfeld's Mattie is believably tough and headstrong, able to hold her own with Rooster, yet endearing and sympathetic. Matt Damon is merely okay, which is still miles better than Glenn Campbell's risible performance in the original. Baddies Josh Brolin (W.) and Barry Pepper (Saving Private Ryan) have as much to do as Jeff Corey and Robert Duvall in the original, which is to say, not much. Dakin Matthews (Rough Riders) provides an uncanny Strother Martin impression.

So, pardner, what are you waiting for? Go and see True Grit, pronto. For the first time in a long while, a modern Western has the look and feel of a classic Western, and for that alone the Coens are to be commended. 9/10

http://nothingiswrittenfilm.blogspot.com/2010/12/true-grit-2010.html (http://nothingiswrittenfilm.blogspot.com/2010/12/true-grit-2010.html)


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 27, 2010, 06:29:44 PM
I was disappointed to learn that New Mexico was playing Oklahoma this time (I guess there's some reason why Oklahoma can't play Oklahoma).

Money and tax incentives I believe. It's much cheaper to film in New Mexico.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 27, 2010, 06:30:44 PM
Speaking of money: I read somewhere on IMDB (I'll have to find the link) that the movie's already made $37 million on a $38 million budget, which means it stands a good chance of turning a profit. When was the last Western to make money at the box-office?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on December 28, 2010, 01:14:10 AM
When was the last Western to make money at the box-office?

http://boxofficemojo.com/genres/chart/?id=western.htm

(http://serve.mysmiley.net/mad/mad0099.gif) (http://www.mysmiley.net)


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 28, 2010, 07:13:40 AM
That's not a very helpful list inasmuch as the budgets aren't listed as well.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 28, 2010, 08:07:33 AM
Quote
"Rooster's racist treatment of Indians"
Can't imagine to what you're referring. If you are talking about the scene where he kicks the wicked children off the porch, he does so for good reason: Rooster has just caught them torturing a mule. If anything, this is the film's big PC moment: Rooster is a PETA sympathizer!

However, there is one bit where the Coens show the non-PC climate in which their tale is set: at the hanging. Each of the condemned men says his piece before receiving sentence, but when the Indian tries the hangman shoves a hood over his head, cutting him off (this is a change from the novel). That gave me a laugh.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 28, 2010, 09:00:26 AM
I enjoyed that scene, if only because the Indian was Jonathan Joss, aka John Redcorn from King of the Hill.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on December 28, 2010, 10:39:40 AM
That's not a very helpful list inasmuch as the budgets aren't listed as well.

Thanks for reading anyway.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on December 28, 2010, 08:54:08 PM
Saw it tonight with the missus, I'll write more later preliminary rating 9/10  O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 29, 2010, 06:48:15 AM
Saw it tonight with the missus, I'll write more later preliminary rating 9/10  O0

 O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 29, 2010, 01:30:18 PM
Once again, Mattie Ross, as written, is an annoying character. That's why she grows up to be an old maid. To present her as an appealing Disney-style heroine is to get the character completely wrong.

Well, I didn't find Hailee Steinfeld's portrayal of Mattie annoying, like, at all. So much for this theory.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 29, 2010, 03:58:52 PM
Well, I didn't find Hailee Steinfeld's portrayal of Mattie annoying, like, at all. So much for this theory.
So much for Hailee Steinfeld, or perhaps the approach the Coens decided to go with. Ms. Steinfeld could probably manage annoying, just as she was able to produce likable and persistent, but she probably couldn't do both at the same time. The Coens had to settle.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on December 30, 2010, 09:50:41 PM
So let's try and look at these films side by side. I read the Portis novel roughly back when the first version of the film first came out around 1969, its been so long ago that I don't remember much details of the novel at all but remember the 1969 film hewing pretty close to the printed page. Recently the Hathaway/Wayne film version was on cable and I caught it.

Visuals

Landscapes:

I was quite pleased with the 2010 version, it looked geographically correct. When I heard that this film was shot in New Mexico I was hoping that we wouldn't get a reprise of the 1969 film with its Colorado & California landscapes. Though visually rich the 1969 film did not look like The Indian Territory (Oklahoma) it was supposed to take place in, it was way too mountainous. In the 2010 film I saw only one quick shot of distant mountains in the background and the way it was shot it was hard to determine their height they could pass for the Ouachita, the Ozarks, or The Winding Stair Mountains .

Anyway, there are basically two major visual habitats of the Great Plains States one habitat, rolling parries, is the feature most people are familiar with from watching Westerns the other not so much known yet just as common are the cottonwood river bottoms (cottonwood & willow floodplains).

Cottonwood bottoms are also a major feature West of the Continental Divide with the heavy scent of Black Cottonwood aromatically signaling the coming of spring, though West of the Divide they are intermixed with the coniferous forests.

A minor more scattered Great Plains habitat feature are the small isolated mountainous masses and flat-topped buttes.

In the 2010 film they showcase the cottonwood bottom land and the actors travel quite extensively through it, making them one of the two the defining landscapes of the film the other one is the mountainous terrain that stands in for the Winding Stair Mountains (which are shortleaf and loblolly pine, southern red oak, white oak, and flowering dogwood covered small low elevation mountains).

Ft. Smith:

2010 impressive establishing shot, wide main street (an important feature for being able to U-turn around a wagon and team), expansive looking for a town of its size, a believable Ft. Smith. 1969 film town set was adequate but the constant shots of high mountains as a backdrop behind all the buildings is a constant reminder its not Arkansas.

Ned Pepper/Rooster Confrontation:

The 1969 film had Quaking Aspens behind all the actors, again a dead giveaway its Colorado. The 2010 film more geographically correct, depicts a small meadow surrounded by  low elevation limestone ridges covered in pine.

Costumes:

One thing that for me can tag a Western quite effectively are the hats, for some reason most recent Westerns have had actors wearing ridiculous looking hats that look way out of place on their heads its almost as if Stetson and Resistol hat companies were doing product placements. Go look in any Music CD entertainment store in the Country Music section and look at the CD covers to see what I mean, THAT look.

Golden Age Westerns had hats that looked sculpted to the actors bodies, heads, and faces. The 1969 and 2010 versions looked just fine in this department.

Screenplay

I think both films here are about equal following the novel's dialog and plot with differences in just emphasis, i.e. in the 2010 version on Mattie's POV. I like the sequence with Chen Lee & General Sterling Price in the 1969 version, Both the Bear Man/Doctor and the native boys torturing the donkey at Bagby's Store sequence in the 2010. There are enough differences to make both enjoyable watches from that standpoint.

Actors/Characters

Rooster Cogburn:

John Wayne has an abundance of nostalgic cinematic memory going for him in the 1969 version there is no way the 2010 film can compete with that. In 1969 Wayne plays Rooster Cogburn but he's also playing and old tried & true version of himself.

Jeff Bridges' Rooster does not remind you of any of Bridges' previous roles and he creates a believable drunken curmudgeon of a lawman.

Mattie:

Hailee Steinfeld is more effective as the headstrong Mattie and is closer in age to the Mattie of the novel a definite plus.

LaBeouf:

No Contest, Dammon light-years better than Campbell. I think Campbell as just another popular singer that was almost formulaic-ally inserted into Westerns (Ricky Nelson in Rio Bravo, Frankie Avalon in The Alamo) to boost box office.

Tom Chaney:

This one is a wash, both were effective with what they had to work with.

Ned Pepper

Another wash, in 1969 Robert Duvall was barely cutting his teeth in Westerns I believe he was previously in only an episode of Wild Wild West, though he has it now in 1969 he had no cinematic memory in Westerns. Barry Pepper was just as effective in the role.

Supporting cast:

This I'll give an edge to 1969 simply because it had a plethora of Golden Age Western actors to give it an instant cache, Strother Martin, John Doucette, Dennis Hopper, to name a few.

Score

I don't believe either film was effective here, nothing remotely memorable, to me anyway.
 




Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on December 30, 2010, 11:56:35 PM
Is Bridges going to shout "Fill yur hands you sonvabitch!" ?

And if he is... how is he going to top the Dukes delivery of said line?


This was posted at the beginning of the thread. And nobody among the reviewers of the newer version mentioned this scene which, alone, could make all the difference. Was it done on purpose or just by neglect?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on December 31, 2010, 04:32:14 AM
"Fill yur hands you sonvabitch!"

Its there but we are seeing that whole confrontation mostly from Mattie & LaBoeuf's point of view on the bluff, there's been so much great Rooster sequences before this point in the film and Bridges has no cinematic memory that it isn't as climactic as it is in the 1969 version where it works well for Wayne (you expect it, and his use of the modified Winchester is an homage to his first screen appearance in Stagecoach) sort of like in Unforgiven where you know Eastwood is sooner or later going to go into Man With No Name mode. Its not needed.

Bridges basically doesn't have to top it, he's playing Rooster as a drunken lout but a pretty dangerous and deadly hombre throughout the film with "true grit".

See the film, to see what I'm getting at.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on December 31, 2010, 07:40:18 AM
Bridges's delivery of said line is a bit off, but that's the biggest criticism I'd make of his performance.

CJ, as usual an impressive analysis. O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on December 31, 2010, 07:54:58 AM
Yeah, good job, CJ, especially regarding the landscapes.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on January 02, 2011, 12:21:25 AM
This was posted at the beginning of the thread. And nobody among the reviewers of the newer version mentioned this scene which, alone, could make all the difference. Was it done on purpose or just by neglect?

If there is one scene the Coen's should have changed it was that one.
The whole climax is lazy as it looks and feels like the original only with some added CGI blood.

The original's climax has become too iconic so the Coen's should have overhauled it to make it fit more to their style.



Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on January 02, 2011, 12:23:20 AM
Bridges's delivery of said line is a bit off

Only because we're so used to the Duke's delivery but yeah, it did seem like it was quickly rushed out of his mouth.
That whole scene, like the line itself, felt tacked on.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Whalestoe on January 02, 2011, 06:39:43 PM
This is now the Coen's highest grossing film! Cool stuff.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on January 03, 2011, 10:07:14 PM
Hey Whalestoe!

Darby and Campbell remember TRUE GRIT.
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/la-et-true-grit-nostalgia-20110104,0,637096.story


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on January 04, 2011, 08:47:49 AM
Very interesting. That article twice mentions Norwood, the film Cambell and Darby worked together on immediately after True Grit. It's another Portis adaptation, and I hadn't realized it existed until just now!


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on January 04, 2011, 01:21:01 PM
So much for Hailee Steinfeld, or perhaps the approach the Coens decided to go with. Ms. Steinfeld could probably manage annoying, just as she was able to produce likable and persistent, but she probably couldn't do both at the same time. The Coens had to settle.

It takes a big man to admit he's wrong, so I doubt we'll be hearing from you soon.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Whalestoe on January 05, 2011, 03:15:56 AM
Hey Whalestoe!

Darby and Campbell remember TRUE GRIT.
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/la-et-true-grit-nostalgia-20110104,0,637096.story

How's it going, Firecracker? Glad to see you posting around here more often.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on January 25, 2011, 08:46:06 AM
Nice piece re: True Grit's relevance and enduring appeal:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/23/opinion/23rich.html?_r=3&smid=tw-NYTimesRich&pagewanted=all (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/23/opinion/23rich.html?_r=3&smid=tw-NYTimesRich&pagewanted=all)


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on January 25, 2011, 12:34:57 PM
Well spotted! O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on January 25, 2011, 05:36:19 PM
 O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: uncknown on February 03, 2011, 12:00:45 AM
i think the box office success is the best film news of the year (even better than Natalie portman doing a lezzie scene >:D >:D)
congrats to the Coens!


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Banjo on February 17, 2011, 07:38:19 AM
I saw this the other day and was bored to tears.A pointless scene to scene ripoff of the original movie and inferior in pretty much every respect.Jeff Bridges is nowhere near as charismatic or colourful as John Wayne was in the Cogburn role and i struggled to understand the heavy accent at times.No more western remakes please!  :(

5/10


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Banjo on February 17, 2011, 07:46:28 AM
The whole climax is lazy as it looks and feels like the original only with some added CGI blood.

The original's climax has become too iconic so the Coen's should have overhauled it to make it fit more to their style.



Exactly a very flat ending to an even flatter movie.This is very lazy uncreative cinema  but i guess the Coen Brothers saw the dollar signs just like the makers of THE OMEN clone in 2006.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on February 17, 2011, 08:01:20 AM
Exactly a very flat ending to an even flatter movie.This is very lazy uncreative cinema  but i guess the Coen Brothers saw the dollar signs just like the makers of THE OMEN clone in 2006.

I doubt they really need any dollar now. They've proven many times that they're not trying to make movies that success (I mean... can you make "A Serious Man" and seriously hope that somebody who is not a die hard fan will see it?). When you read/see their interviews, it'sp retty clear they're just trying to make films THEY would want to watch. That said, I am not sure what they were trying to do with this remake. According to what I've seen (the trailers), read and heard, it doesn't look creative at all.
Now, a good old western with Bridges in front of the camera and Deakins behind it is more than enough to lead me to the theater.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on February 18, 2011, 12:41:55 PM
Released today in Italy. I have little to add to what I have already written before I saw the movie. As I watched the movie dubbed I can give a more exact rating after I'll have seen the dvd. For sake of objectivity I also played the Wayne original after I was back home.  Still it is apparent that 1) Bridges does little or nothing (except to change eye to the patch) to build a memortable character 2) The girl canět play for life. She just goes through the motions: she is probably nearer to the written character but a scene by scene comparison with Darby makes me prefer the older actress a thousand times. Darby vivifies every single shot she's in, her chemistry with the duke is thrilling while there's no chemistry at all between Bridges and the teenager. About the rest, don't throw stones at me but I am not so sure I prefer Damon to Campbell: the singer may not be an actor but he has a face that tells me everything about his character at a glance. I didn't like Josh Brolin either: always wearing a grin to impart viciousmness to his character; Corey exuded much more evil without an effort. The only scene I prefer of this new version over the older one is the one in the cabin and, maybe, the night ride toward the end. I also liked the very high hanging man in the woods (can't remember if this scene was in the book though). I could have given this a 8\10 had there not been the previous movie, So I give it a 7\10 anyway.   


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 18, 2011, 03:57:27 PM
Bridges played a much different Rooster than the Duke, I'm not sure what you're trying. I like both about evenly but Bridges is a far more grizzled and disheveled character than Wayne's interpretation.

I still don't get why people love Darby so much. I want to punch her every time she's on screen, one of the most obnoxious, talentless actresses in Hollywood history. Having seen her in other things recently I conclude that it's not the character but the actress. Of course, sane people who aren't Jenkins should have gotten this point by dint of having Steinfeld to compare her with. Steinfeld seems much closer to Portis's intepretation (speaking as someone who went through the book picturing Wayne, not Bridges, as Rooster) and a much better actress to boot.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on February 18, 2011, 05:28:47 PM
I also liked the very high hanging man in the woods (can't remember if this scene was in the book though).
It's the Coens' invention. The scene didn't do much for me, but I'm kinda glad it's in there so that when someone says the new film is a shot-for-shot remake of the old one I know to instantly give them the finger.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on February 18, 2011, 05:34:47 PM
Bridges played a much different Rooster than the Duke,

Hadn't noticed. I think they're playing the same character, only Wayne has Darby to deal with and that humanizes him;  Bridges is alone and plays just an old drunkard.

I still don't get why people love Darby so much. I want to punch her every time she's on screen, one of the most obnoxious, talentless actresses in Hollywood history. Having seen her in other things recently I conclude that it's not the character but the actress. Of course, sane people who aren't Jenkins should have gotten this point by dint of having Steinfeld to compare her with. She was much closer to Portis's intepretation (speaking as someone who went through the book picturing Wayne, not Bridges, as Rooster) and a much better actress to boot.

People like Darby because she was lovely: when Campbell says he would have liked to kiss her I share that sentiment. When Damon says the same thing he's the first not to believe it. Also, DArby's face was capable of many expressions, at least more than Wednesday Addams. She transmits her emotion to the viewer. Her chemistry with Wayne is perfect: but iIf you don't like Wayne then you don't like Darby either.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 18, 2011, 06:00:56 PM
Quote
People like Darby because she was lovely

Lovely like one of your burros, perhaps. :D

Quote
Her chemistry with Wayne is perfect: but if you don't like Wayne then you don't like Darby either.

Completely and utterly false.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on February 18, 2011, 06:14:01 PM
The problem with Darby and Wednesday Adams is that Mattie, according to Portis, shouldn't be attractive, and both actresses are, though in different ways. There are a couple of clues in the text to indicate that Mattie got hit with an ugly stick.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on February 18, 2011, 06:24:45 PM
Put an ugly Mattie on the screen and see how many people go to watch the movie.



(http://www.funcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/Kim-Darby1-300x226.jpg)


(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_s4kKiT-Jhao/TSPP6hgGZ3I/AAAAAAAADCM/sNpRw4BsaGg/s1600/JohnWayneKimDarbyGlenCampbellTrueGrit.jpg)




Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 18, 2011, 06:48:40 PM
The Duke of course had nothing to do with the original's success.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on February 19, 2011, 12:23:54 AM
The Duke of course had nothing to do with the original's success.

Absolutely, if I'm told Bridges can play the role with the same authority.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 19, 2011, 10:50:41 AM
The remake was (in the States anyway) definitely a word-of-mouth film. I don't think Bridges or the Coens are that much of a box-office draw, and aside from pedophiles I doubt anyone went to see it for Steinfeld.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: titoli on February 19, 2011, 03:25:14 PM
The remake was (in the States anyway) definitely a word-of-mouth film. I don't think Bridges or the Coens are that much of a box-office draw, and aside from pedophiles I doubt anyone went to see it for Steinfeld.

Don't underestimate pedophiles tastes...I doubt she could have made it to a bunga bunga party in Arcore.
About the word of mouth film, I presume most people over there didn't even know it was a remake.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 19, 2011, 05:25:00 PM
About the word of mouth film, I presume most people over there didn't even know it was a remake.

That fact was trumpeted in pretty much every review and advertisement of the film I saw. Heck, even overhearing conversations after the trailer I heard people refer to "the old John Wayne movie."


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on February 19, 2011, 08:28:14 PM
I don't think Bridges or the Coens are that much of a box-office draw

I disagree.

Since 2007 the Coen's have become popular with the mainstream audience, so much so that people went in droves to see Burn After Reading. A film that the average Joe would have otherwise skipped.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 19, 2011, 08:36:25 PM
Since 2007 the Coen's have become popular with the mainstream audience, so much so that people went in droves to see Burn After Reading. A film that the average Joe would have otherwise skipped.

This of course explains the box office failure of A Serious Man, a film the average Joe would have skipped.

Burn After Reading's success is greatly qualified, anyway. Besides the fact that it wasn't that successful, it came out in September (a deadzone for movies) and starred George Clooney and Brad Pitt.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on February 19, 2011, 08:42:01 PM
This of course explains the box office failure of A Serious Man, a film the average Joe would have skipped.

Burn After Reading was only a big hit by Coens' standards anyway, and it had George Clooney and Brad Pitt in the cast.


Good points.
I don't think I stand completely corrected though as I don't remember much advertisement for A Serious Man (in fact I didn't even know of it until 2 months after its release whereas BAR's ad campaign was everywhere) and the subject matter is not something that would appeal to a wide audience.
At least BAR had some espionage stuff and actually had laughs in the trailer.

Would it be possible that a reason True Grit did well was because of its brand?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on February 19, 2011, 08:45:40 PM
This of course explains the box office failure of A Serious Man, a film the average Joe would have skipped.

Burn After Reading's success is greatly qualified, anyway. Besides the fact that it wasn't that successful, it came out in September (a deadzone for movies) and starred George Clooney and Brad Pitt.


Wait a second...

Looking at the numbers on wikipedia (if that is to be trusted) it says that Serious Man grossed 31 million and was made for 7 million.
Is the 31 million a total or just domestic?
Either way it was a success.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on February 19, 2011, 08:48:59 PM
Burn After Reading's success is greatly qualified, anyway. Besides the fact that it wasn't that successful, it came out in September (a deadzone for movies) and starred George Clooney and Brad Pitt.


I'm sorry for triple posting but I forgot to answer this...

Any film as small scale as that that makes well over 100 million is a success.
At least, I'd think so...


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 19, 2011, 08:49:22 PM
Fair enough then, though it's fair to say $31 million isn't setting the box office alight.

As to your other points: True Grit was heavily marketed and has a recognizable title and story. Plus, as indicated, the extremely positive word-of-mouth from critics helped it a lot. I'm not saying the Coens' being involved had nothing to do with its success, as they have a good many fans. At the same time, however, I don't think "a Coen Bros. film" above the marquee is enough to draw the kind of box-office True Grit did.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on February 19, 2011, 08:51:51 PM
At the same time, however, I don't think "a Coen Bros. film" above the marquee is enough to draw the kind of box-office True Grit did.


All those analyst seem to think otherwise and although I don't think they're always right I'm sure they're far more qualified than you or I to say so.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: cigar joe on February 19, 2011, 09:07:36 PM
From what I jist-ed out of the "The Day the Movies Died" I would lean toward the branding for "True Grit"


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: The Firecracker on February 20, 2011, 02:03:57 PM
 A lot of critics have been saying that what the two films share is Cogburn's eye-patch which wasn't present in the novel.

I read the novel and while I don't remember if Cogburn had an eye patch I'm certain he was missing an eye.
Can anybody shed some light on this?
Is this more ignorance from critics?
Or did Cogburn run around with nothing to protect his empty socket?
I find that highly unlikely...


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 20, 2011, 02:35:55 PM
I don't recall an eyepatch being mentioned in the book. Jinkies, care to shed some light on this?


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on February 22, 2011, 08:47:23 AM
Rooster has a bad eye (unspecified which). Nothing is said of an eye-patch.

Getting back to the money-making discussion: could the fact that this film has a PG-13 rating have anything to do with its exceptional (for the Coens) boxoffice? Just asking.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on February 22, 2011, 09:56:49 AM
Getting back to the money-making discussion: could the fact that this film has a PG-13 rating have anything to do with its exceptional (for the Coens) boxoffice? Just asking.

That too. O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on March 16, 2011, 06:22:47 AM
John Exshaw, over at CinemaRetro, wrote this provocative and well-considered piece on the film: http://www.cinemaretro.com/index.php?/archives/5568-Ridin-with-Rooster-Again-Some-Thoughts-on-True-Grit.html#extended


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Jill on March 17, 2011, 01:46:41 PM
Seen it finally. "Badass" is the best world to describe it, but I'm getting the book too.  O0

Mattie totally rocks.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on May 27, 2011, 05:40:57 PM
Blu Grit: http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film3/blu-ray_reviews54/true_grit_blu-ray.htm


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: uncknown on June 11, 2011, 10:48:59 PM
very enjoyable.
only complaint is it took a little to long to get to the chase - 33 minutes iirc.

The Coens have double-handedly restored the Western with TG & NO COUNTRY
(meanwhile their 'regular ' films like  A SERIOUS MAN suck :D


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on June 20, 2011, 02:33:45 PM
The Blu-Ray is indeed quite impressive. Watched it with my dad yesterday. O0


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 20, 2011, 03:37:17 PM
The Blu-Ray is indeed quite impressive. Watched it with my dad yesterday. O0
Check out the doc on Charles Portis that comes with the supplements. Very well done.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: T.H. on June 01, 2016, 07:24:35 AM
This is a good but not great movie. I agree with most of the criticisms: the underwhelming score, the climax is rushed, Damon's character inexplicably leaving twice, the opening scenes in the town are slow and the characters weren't set up well (the courtroom scene where the Cogburn character was introduced was just plain bad).

I just wished there would have been more of a journey. While I haven't read the book, the scenes in the town don't really work outside of the negotiation scene. Cogburn could have been introduced in a more clever way as well.

I also didn't like some of the dialogue and don't care for the Coen's obsession with dialect/accent/language - there was also too much era specific dialogue, it was overdone. Bridges was good but I definitely prefer Wayne's performance.

This might be the only instance where I don't have a preference between the original and a remake.

8/10


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Dust Devil on June 05, 2016, 06:11:07 AM
I thought I was the only one stalling with this.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: drinkanddestroy on June 05, 2016, 07:40:51 AM
I have not seen this (yet). I did not like the John Wayne version. If this one is definitely better, maybe I'll give it a try.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 05, 2016, 08:47:03 AM
I just wished there would have been more of a journey. While I haven't read the book, the scenes in the town don't really work outside of the negotiation scene. Cogburn could have been introduced in a more clever way as well.
The first half of the book is spent in town, the second, on the trail. I think the Hathaway version gets the mix right. Needless to say, intro-ing Cogburn in "the jakes" was an invention of the Coens.

Quote
I also didn't like some of the dialogue and don't care for the Coen's obsession with dialect/accent/language - there was also too much era specific dialogue, it was overdone.
My objection here is that the Coens eliminate a bunch of Portis's language just so they can add back in their own ersatz version. They think they can write this stuff as well as the original novelist but they are self-deceived. Hathaway uses a lot of lines taken directly from the book. Every year I have some of my students read the novel and then we watch Hathaway with the English subtitles turned on and they get to see the words they've read spoken. I don't know if they get anything out of it, but it always gives me a kick.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on June 05, 2016, 10:35:43 AM
Needless to say, intro-ing Cogburn in "the jakes" was an invention of the Coens...

... and may be the best scene of the movie. Ok, the attorney clearly steals the show, which isn't good for the film but great for the scene. Nobody writes courtrooms scenes like the Coens (eventhough Better Call Saul comes dangerously close sometimes). Nobody lights a courtroom like Deakins. Nobody plays at attorney better than someone who's directed by the Coens.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 05, 2016, 10:49:02 AM
... and may be the best scene of the movie.
It's one of those clever scenes that works well on its own but in the flow of the film disrupts things. It should have been edited out and used as a deleted scene for the Blu-ray.

The courtroom scene is largely taken from Portis.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on June 05, 2016, 10:55:09 AM
It's one of those clever scenes that works well on its own but in the flow of the film disrupts things. It should have been edited out and used as a deleted scene for the Blu-ray.

THat may be true.
I think the idea was to paint Jeff Bridge as brutal and off the book but that's not what it does.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: T.H. on June 05, 2016, 11:46:38 AM
The first half of the book is spent in town, the second, on the trail. I think the Hathaway version gets the mix right. Needless to say, intro-ing Cogburn in "the jakes" was an invention of the Coens.

My objection here is that the Coens eliminate a bunch of Portis's language just so they can add back in their own ersatz version. They think they can write this stuff as well as the original novelist but they are self-deceived. Hathaway uses a lot of lines taken directly from the book. Every year I have some of my students read the novel and then we watch Hathaway with the English subtitles turned on and they get to see the words they've read spoken. I don't know if they get anything out of it, but it always gives me a kick.

While I wasn't crazy about some of the era specific dialogue in the original, it was certainly better, so what you shared makes a lot of sense. I also forgot to mention that I couldn't understand a fair amount of Bridges' dialogue due to all of the mumbling. It was a decent touch to the performance but overdone.

... and may be the best scene of the movie. Ok, the attorney clearly steals the show, which isn't good for the film but great for the scene. Nobody writes courtrooms scenes like the Coens (eventhough Better Call Saul comes dangerously close sometimes). Nobody lights a courtroom like Deakins. Nobody plays at attorney better than someone who's directed by the Coens.

Courtroom scenes are very TV/stagey by nature and are basically inherently flawed. Also, that specific scene gave nothing but information to the viewer in an amateurish manner. It's a pretty nasty violator of the show-don't-tell philosophy of filmmaking.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on June 05, 2016, 12:01:20 PM
Courtroom scenes are very TV/stagey by nature and are basically inherently flawed. Also, that specific scene gave nothing but information to the viewer in an amateurish manner. It's a pretty nasty violator of the show-don't-tell philosophy of filmmaking.

It's a good thing filmmaking accepts several completely distinct philosophies. Most masterpieces have broken all kinds of rules. I'd say that filmmaking can use any other medium or rule, but also laugh at them exactly how it wants as long as it works. I've seen silent movies that are absolute masterpieces, I've cried all I had while watching the flashback sequence from UP, but I've also cried, laughed and been mesmerized by close ups of talking heads in many other films (Blade Runner, The Social Network, Vertigo, OUATIA...).

Last but not least, I think you're pretty harsh with that particular scene, which, although flawed in the way it's used in the film, is absolutely greatly directed. The decoupage, while not very inventive (who cares) is very precise and impressive. For instance, I love the way we slowly turn around Bridge from Mattie's standpoint to slowly take a glimpse of him. One of the greatest (and utterly cinematic) introductions of a character in recent memory.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: T.H. on June 06, 2016, 12:16:37 PM
It's a good thing filmmaking accepts several completely distinct philosophies. Most masterpieces have broken all kinds of rules. I'd say that filmmaking can use any other medium or rule, but also laugh at them exactly how it wants as long as it works. I've seen silent movies that are absolute masterpieces, I've cried all I had while watching the flashback sequence from UP, but I've also cried, laughed and been mesmerized by close ups of talking heads in many other films (Blade Runner, The Social Network, Vertigo, OUATIA...).

Last but not least, I think you're pretty harsh with that particular scene, which, although flawed in the way it's used in the film, is absolutely greatly directed. The decoupage, while not very inventive (who cares) is very precise and impressive. For instance, I love the way we slowly turn around Bridge from Mattie's standpoint to slowly take a glimpse of him. One of the greatest (and utterly cinematic) introductions of a character in recent memory.

I'm all for directors breaking convention, but the show-don't-tell rule isn't really a rule per se as it is an overall philosophy on how 'moving pictures' are made. That doesn't mean talking head scenes don't have their place in movies, a scene like the interrogation in Blade Runner is fantastic, but it's not generically spouting off information about the main character. There is also no tension in the court room scene, the lawyer isn't a character in the film and is simply there just to read you information.

With that said, it's a technically well made scene, but how many Roger Deakins shot scenes aren't (especially with talented directors)? I also don't think I'm being overly harsh. I can be very forgiving about talkie scenes which are there for exposition purposes. For example the scene in Escape From New York where Lee Van Cleef's character reads off Snake's rap sheet; it's sort of the same thing but a huge difference: LVC is an important character and it's setting up their relationship, you don't know if Russell's character will accept and they're discussing a very interesting scenario. There is also an underlying tension in the scene where something can happen...

Now compare that to a banal court scene where a lawyer, who isn't a character in a movie, is simply giving the audience information in the most boring way possible for 5-7 minutes (?). Now compare that to a scene where the Cogburn character simply deals with a criminal in an incredibly harsh and unprofessional manner which can tell you almost everything about his character in as little as 30 seconds.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: noodles_leone on June 06, 2016, 06:14:46 PM
I get your point. But I laughed through the whole scene so it wasn't boring at all to me.


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: Groggy on June 06, 2016, 09:05:27 PM
Yeah, if we're going to complain about long-winded, aureate dialogue in a Coen Bros. film...


Title: Re: True Grit (2010)
Post by: dave jenkins on June 07, 2016, 10:47:27 AM
It is supposed to be a funny scene.