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Author Topic: Frayling's commentary  (Read 8730 times)
Juan Miranda
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« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2005, 05:41:39 PM »

and coincidentally the most leone-like director i've ever seen.
Errrm. He's fat and has a beard?

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« Reply #16 on: July 27, 2005, 06:08:16 PM »

well i was reffering to direction... but coincidentally he's somewhat of a lookalike as well or at least a copycat... he has a full greyish beard, he's fat, wears glasses, and is always photographed with a cigar

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« Reply #17 on: July 27, 2005, 06:11:09 PM »

Millius's commentary was worthless. . . he was talking about personally meeting Leone or something like that.  I liked his comments in the documentaries, but his stuff for the commentary easily could've been left out.

cause he wasnt doing the commentary, they just took stuff from an interview and put it on the commentary, hate it when they that, i also hate it when they paste 2 diffrent commentaries together to make it sound like the people are together, thats so irritating

but milius is definitly the man, dont we all love and hate Conan the Barbarian?

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« Reply #18 on: July 27, 2005, 06:34:13 PM »

conan and the wind and the lion may scream leone(the direction anyhow) more than anyother non-spaghetti western movies

and yeah, commentaries that aren't really commentaries are ridiculous.

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« Reply #19 on: July 28, 2005, 06:34:14 AM »

Milius has always struck me more as a Peckinpah wannabe than a Leone heir. . . some of his movies are good-to-great, but I can't say I'm a big fan of him.

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« Reply #20 on: July 28, 2005, 07:07:51 AM »

hes making a western in 2007

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0380466/

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« Reply #21 on: July 28, 2005, 05:10:09 PM »

****, i didnt know Tucumcari was in NM, i dont think europeans really care, i know i dont, doesnt really matter neither
It does when the guy making this mistake then uses this "observation" to support a specious argument: that SL presented all the U.S. towns in the movie as affluent communities, and all the Mexican towns as impoverished hovels. In fact, SL did nothing of the sort.

Frayling has done all Leoneastes considerable service. However, he is not careful with all his facts and cannot always be relied upon. His scholarship does not rise to the level of that practiced by other film scholars, such as those who write on Peckinpah. This is unfortunate, but that's the truth of the matter.

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« Reply #22 on: July 28, 2005, 09:24:55 PM »

I'm not saying that leone meant to do it, but fraylings observation isn't completely wrong, nor completely ignorant... tucumcari wasn't technically a US town at the time of the setting of the movie, sure they had a sheriff and all in the movie, but at the time it was barely a U.S. territory, no where near as american as say el paso, in fact it was probably just as close to being a mexican town than a US one.

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« Reply #23 on: August 02, 2005, 03:17:33 PM »

Frayling does have this tendency to mention funny or romantic-sounding behind-the-scenes stories, which may or may not be true. For example on both the FFDM commentary and the documentary on disc 2 he tells this story about Leone's first meeting with Van Cleef, and it's in car park in the rain, and they've got a suitcase full of cash to offer him and Leone sees LVC from a distance and says something like "He looks perfect. Don't let him speak or I might change my mind" and Van Cleef accepts on the spot and is on a plane to Italy a few hours later. Then in an interview with Alberto Grimaldi on the same disc, he tells a completely different story about him and Leone first meeting Van Cleef in a bar. Frayling's story sounds lovely if it were true, but I'm more inclined to believe someone who was actually there.

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« Reply #24 on: August 28, 2005, 12:50:05 PM »

I like Frayling a lot and have bought all his Leone-related books (I even have an autographed copy of the new one), but I agree with you fans here that American geography is definitely a very weak point for him.

My wife recently suggested we take a vacation at some luxury hotel in Florida, so I said, "Why not the one where Robert DeNiro stayed in ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA?"

I looked up its location in Frayling's Leone bio, SOMETHING TO DO WITH DEATH and he says (on p. 451), "The Florida beach sequence was filmed at the Don Caesar Palace at St. Petersburg, Tampa, near Miami."

What the -- ?!   Shocked

St. Petersburg and Tampa are two completely different cities, and they're both over 200 miles distant from Miami!

Also, although the hotel is indeed actually in St. Petersburg, its correct name is "The Don CeSar Palace." 

(BTW, That silly hotel proved to be waaaay too expensive for us. It's one of those places where you can pay something like $3000 to have your pet cat "massaged" while you're shopping for a diamond tie-tack and drinking wine what was bottled while George Washington was the president.)

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« Reply #25 on: September 28, 2005, 05:43:19 PM »

OUCH!
kinda harsh comments on sir FRAYLING early on this board. Embarrassed

i hardly believe the man is an ass just cuz he messed up on some locations and a few stories(which i am sure leone told him!why would he pull stories out of his ass?).

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cigar joe
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« Reply #26 on: September 28, 2005, 06:49:56 PM »

About corrections in books from this past Sunday's NYT, interesting stuff.


In at least one respect, Seth Mnookin's "Hard News" mirrors its subject - this newspaper - with almost dead-on accuracy: its paperback edition, published last month, includes a carefully constructed list of corrections. Many errors in the three-page mea culpa may seem mundane or inconsequential ("Danny Meyer is a celebrity restaurateur, not a celebrity chef"), but its very existence is noteworthy.

Corrections in books are rare. But the conclusion this implies - that books rarely contain errors - is itself incorrect. Books are not usually corrected because they can't be, not because they shouldn't be. As Mnookin's book shows, putting a statement between hard (or soft) covers does not make it more reliable than one published in a newspaper.

"The printed book page has always enjoyed a mystique that newsprint hasn't," said Ron Chernow, the National Book Award-winning author of "The House of Morgan" and "Alexander Hamilton." "People tend to accept more uncritically what they read in a book than what they read in a magazine or newspaper." Yet authors themselves, especially the most careful ones, know this mystique is undeserved. Uncorrected errors - some big, some small - are far more common than most publishers admit.
 
"What you find when you are working on a book like this," said Megan Marshall of her book, "The Peabody Sisters: Three Women Who Ignited Romanticism," "is that many of the other books are riddled with errors."
Similarly, Jean Strouse says that when she was researching "Morgan: American Financier," she ran into a lot of entrenched mythology. "There are certain things people want to believe" about J. P. Morgan, she said, "and it's easier to go with the mythology than to find out." Book after book, she said, would repeat stories, particularly about Morgan's womanizing.

These flaws slip through partly because, unlike many magazines and some newspapers, books are not fact-checked in a systematic way. "Readers imagine that there is a large and complex scholarly apparatus at a publishing house that is verifying the accuracy of what is written," Chernow said. In reality, book publishers do not consider checking facts their responsibility.
 
"We place the onus, contractually in fact, on the author," said David Rosenthal, executive vice president and publisher at Simon & Schuster. He added that while copy editors routinely check spellings and dates of key events, "we do not do a line-by-line check; we rely on the warranties of the author, as well as the author's bona fides, which we regard as critical in commissioning a book."

Books are checked during the copy editing process, and those that contain potentially libelous material are vetted by a publisher's legal department. But most publishers do not have separate fact-checking departments, and often farm out that work to freelancers. "We do fact-checking as a backup system," said Bruce Giffords, senior production editor at Viking. And while some editors might go to a library to look at primary sources, in the case of a complicated book, Giffords said, "We couldn't possibly duplicate the years of research." Imagine trying to retrace the steps of any one volume of Robert Caro's Lyndon Johnson biography, much less all three.

That's a heavy burden for an author, who after all is only human. "No writer should ever trust herself in the fact-checking department," said Richard Preston, the author of "The Hot Zone." "You need to subject your own work to outside scrutiny."

Preston, like other writers, has widened his safety net. He has hired fact-checkers to retrace his steps and uses an unorthodox system of verification: reading passages to the subject he's writing about. Some writers circulate their manuscripts to colleagues whom they have cultivated for just such a purpose.

Even so, Strouse said, mistakes are inevitable. "There's no way in a great big project that you're going to get everything right unless you spend 40 years on it. I spent 15." Marshall, for her part, spent 20 years on the Peabodys.

But once a book is printed, mistakes are tricky to fix. Often it is readers who point out errors, and the message might not reach a book's writer or publisher for years, too late for a change to be made in another printing or edition. And few hardcover books even go through more than one printing; Linda Rosenberg, associate publisher and director of paperbacks at Farrar, Straus & Giroux, estimates that at least half of all trade hardcover books are not reprinted at all. The only other opportunity for a corrective note is the paperback edition, and some books don't even get that far. More important, the whole system rests on an honor code. A writer - or at least a publisher - must admit a mistake.

Most publishers prefer to fix mistakes quietly, between editions. In extreme cases a publisher may slip in an errata note, but this is highly unusual. "In almost 20 years in the business," said Rosenberg, "I think I have seen these slips in books perhaps six or seven times."
Sometimes, though, keeping quiet isn't an option. After questions of accuracy were raised about "Tour of Duty," Douglas Brinkley's 2004 biography of John Kerry, his publisher, William Morrow, planned to release a revised edition. "I started realizing," Brinkley told The Boston Globe, "I've got to fix this. I've got to fix that."

Last year Simon & Schuster withdrew "Honor Lost," a memoir by Norma Khouri, from sale in the United States after the Australian publisher said the book was probably fictitious. And in perhaps the most famous case, in 2003 Vintage discontinued publication of Michael Bellesiles's "Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture" after he was accused of falsifying research. (The book was later reissued by Soft Skull Press.)

But even small errors can lead to large problems. "The historical error can be very much like the virus that spreads from book to book," Chernow said. He cites a line attributed to Hamilton in books for 150 years - "Your people, sir - your people is a great beast!" - which he said has since been shown to be hearsay reported 71 years after it was supposedly uttered.

Falsehoods like these seep into the record, infecting newspapers and magazines, which often rely on books as main sources. Marshall said that when an excerpt from her book was published in The New Yorker, the magazine's fact-checkers relied heavily on books she knew were flawed. "Any book already in print they considered authoritative," she said, "but because my book was not in print it was not given the same credibility."

But is it even desirable to print a mea culpa in the back of every book or on an accompanying Web site, as Mnookin does and as Robert Wright has done with "Nonzero"? And where would the questioning end? Just last month, the German publisher of Deirdre Bair's "Jung: A Biography" agreed to include several pages of what Jung's family contended were corrections to the book.

Facts are always open to challenge and interpretation. "A reader might think, well, if you have to have pages of corrections, why should I proceed any further?" Chernow said.

Readers might do well to simply shift their expectations, to approach books the way they approach newspapers and magazines: with a healthy dose of skepticism





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