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Author Topic: Doctor Zhivago (1965)  (Read 14960 times)
The Peacemaker
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« on: February 23, 2006, 07:47:09 PM »

Just saw Doctor Zhivago and I loved it! David Lean is one of the greatest directors of all time and can easily be compared to the great Sergio Leone. Every shot is like a painting, some can even be quite haunting such as the guards facing off against a crowd of peaceful protestors or when Zhivago is following the sound of the waterfall through the woods but accidently ends up facing Strelnikov's armored train. The beautiful shots of the Russian landscape that lavishingly fill the screen, the haunting theme music, and the fierce social commentary all add to the powerful effect this film has.

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Beebs
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« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2006, 09:14:21 PM »

What can I say, I must be a Lean trend starter.

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dave jenkins
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« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2006, 09:23:47 PM »

Zhivago is a terrible film, but Kinski's scene is great. The DVD is worth owning just so you can replay Kinski ranting over and over again.

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« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2006, 08:45:07 AM »

I like "Zhivago" a good bit, though not nearly as much as LoA or "Bridge On The River Kwai".  As I've said before I was never overly convinced by Zhivago and Lara's love for each other, but I was able to overlook that to an extent.

Omar Shariff is amazing, there's no other word to describe.  Pretty much the whole supporting cast is superb, particularly Tom Courtenay as Pasha/Strelnikov and Rod Steiger as Komarovsky.  (I'd add Alec Guinness but his part's rather small.)  I honestly didn't like Kinski in this one, though it was good to see him.

The cinematography is beautiful, and I love Maurice Jarre's score.  The set for the "ice palace" towards the end was quite haunting.

I'd give it about 8/10.

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« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2006, 03:54:43 PM »

I really wish we were able to see Strelnikov and Komarovsky more in the film. After the intermission we only see Courtenay for one more scene before he completely vanishes and Rod Steiger's part is so minimal that I doubt he is seen more than 25 minutes in the film.

But I love the film and in my opinion it's much better than Lawrence of Arabia and Bridge on the River Kwai, but they are still great too.

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« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2006, 08:35:03 PM »

I really wish we were able to see Strelnikov and Komarovsky more in the film. After the intermission we only see Courtenay for one more scene before he completely vanishes and Rod Steiger's part is so minimal that I doubt he is seen more than 25 minutes in the film.

But I love the film and in my opinion it's much better than Lawrence of Arabia and Bridge on the River Kwai, but they are still great too.

I agree, like I said those are my two favorite characters, particularly Komarovsky.  I've never been a big Steiger fan, but DAMN is he good here.

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« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2006, 06:18:27 PM »

BTW has anyone here seen the PBS miniseries with Keira Knightley and Sam Neill?  I'm just curious, I've heard both good and bad things about it, so if anyone here's seen it I'd be interested in any advice. . .

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Beebs
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« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2006, 11:04:53 AM »

Why, Groggy! You've changed. Is this the new summer look?

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Groggy
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« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2006, 04:42:49 PM »

Well, I've been looking for a good avatar for a couple of months now, and I just found that one on another thread here.  No big story.  I've already used a variation of it on several other boards in the past.

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« Reply #9 on: March 12, 2006, 10:31:51 PM »

I just had that avatar a couple of months ago. I too was considering changing my avatar.

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« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2006, 08:54:16 PM »

Anyway, to get somewhat back on topic, I would like to agree with Peacemaker's assertion about Lean being comparable to Leone.  In reality, there are only three other directors whom I hold in as high of regard as Leone: Ford, Peckinpah, and Lean.  I think it's beyond question (as others have said) that Leone used Lean's films - particularly "Lawrence of Arabia" - as a reference point.  (I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks of LoA during the desert scenes in GBU.)  Certainly Peckinpah did; as several have pointed out, "Major Dundee" contains several references, probably though not definitely intentional, to LoA.  (It may be of note on that score that Anthony Quinn appears to have been the first choice for Tyreen, though honestly I can't see anyone but Harris in the role.)  And the blowing of the bridge in "The Wild Bunch" used similar camera angles as in "Kwai". 

But anyway, I think very highly of David Lean.  While his films are pervaded by a strong anti-war sentiment (not that there's anything wrong with that, though it does cause distortion of historical fact more than once), that does not change the fact that he is a truly amazing director.  I'm curious what he thought of Leone's films, or if he even saw them.

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« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2006, 09:36:01 PM »

Well, he was an American director so I don't think he took Leone or his films seriously. I would like to hear what Lean had to say about him anyway.

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« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2006, 06:18:51 AM »

Lean was actually British, but point taken.  Tongue

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« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2006, 06:35:31 PM »

I'm pretty far into the novel (350 pages out of about 510 in my edition), and most of the complaints that I had about the movie are remedied by the book.  The historical elements (particularly WWI and Zhivago's involvement in with the Partisan Rangers) are described in much more detail and work better than in the film.  Pasha/Strelnikov, while not necessarily appearing more, is described in a lot more detail (his character is very different than in the book, and his meeting with Zhivago is too), though Komarovsky is MIA at this point in the book too.  I'm not done with the novel yet, but I'd recommend it if you could find to time to read it.  Most (though not all) of the problems you'd be likely to have with the movie aren't there in the book.

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« Reply #14 on: November 25, 2006, 06:37:13 PM »

Question: does anyone know where much of the landscapes were shot for this film?

I'm guessing Colorado?

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