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: True Grit (1969)  ( 22151 )
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« #45 : March 16, 2008, 05:58:10 PM »

Been thinking about this Western a bit more the last couple of days.

I actually saw it in the theater on Times Square.  One of the big things I now remember that struck me at the time I watched it was the dialog, nowadays you may not notice it especially after say watching HBO's Deadwood.  I think this film was a trend setter in that respect.

The dialog strived to sound more authentic to the time period, this was one of the first Westerns to make that obvious. At the time I remember not liking it all that much, it seemed a little bit contrived at the time. Compared to the seemingly almost run-on sentence feeling dialog in Deadwood it now seems quaint. I think we are getting too authentic.

For me the verdict on this trend is still out, but I'm tending not to like it.

I think if it overpowers the story line or the enjoyment of the film it becomes a distraction. Its almost close to watching a foreign language film, you got to really pay attention, the speach patterns and words are that different. What would be in modern language a simple statement becomes quite convoluted.  I remember thinking listening to Ian McShane doing his lines and wondering if he was going to run out of breath, same with the William Sanderson and Alma characters.

I'm tending to think modern speach patterns are more effective in getting the point across to the majority audience, in our mind we know that people living in the West in the 1800's would have said the sentence differently back then, but the modern language makes the meaning quite crystal clear. Call modern speach artistic license.

« : March 16, 2008, 06:10:23 PM cigar joe »

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« #46 : March 16, 2008, 07:01:19 PM »

The image of Wayne that comes out of all this is that of John Wayne. Nobody can play Wayne like John Wayne. And here he plays Wayne at his best. Don't know where the Richard III idea comes from.

LOL. Probably the mentions of Olivier and Richardson. Just a guess, though.



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« #47 : March 16, 2008, 08:49:57 PM »

Been thinking about this Western a bit more the last couple of days.

I actually saw it in the theater on Times Square.  One of the big things I now remember that struck me at the time I watched it was the dialog, nowadays you may not notice it especially after say watching HBO's Deadwood.  I think this film was a trend setter in that respect.

The dialog strived to sound more authentic to the time period, this was one of the first Westerns to make that obvious. At the time I remember not liking it all that much, it seemed a little bit contrived at the time. Compared to the seemingly almost run-on sentence feeling dialog in Deadwood it now seems quaint. I think we are getting too authentic.

For me the verdict on this trend is still out, but I'm tending not to like it.

I think if it overpowers the story line or the enjoyment of the film it becomes a distraction. Its almost close to watching a foreign language film, you got to really pay attention, the speach patterns and words are that different. What would be in modern language a simple statement becomes quite convoluted.  I remember thinking listening to Ian McShane doing his lines and wondering if he was going to run out of breath, same with the William Sanderson and Alma characters.

I'm tending to think modern speach patterns are more effective in getting the point across to the majority audience, in our mind we know that people living in the West in the 1800's would have said the sentence differently back then, but the modern language makes the meaning quite crystal clear. Call modern speach artistic license.
Bold talk for a one-eyed fat man.

I like the use of language in TG, it's one of the things that sets the movie apart. Most of the dialogue comes from the novel, although considerably pared down. I think Portis did a great job of pastiching 19th Century idioms, possibly helped in places by actual court transcripts. I wouldn't for anything wish to pass up the opportunity to hear such lines as "He never played me false until he kilt me," and "Fill your hands, you sonofabitch."

I take your point about the difficulties in getting archaic speech to register with contemporary audiences, but we get plenty of period pieces where 21st century locutions are used. Why not allow room for both approaches? And there is perhaps a third way: I'm guessing the narration in The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford was taken from the source novel. Although it wasn't strictly 19th Century pastiche, the language is highly literary and thus conveys a sense of time before Hemingway. I'm watching Wild Bill on AMC right now and it uses narration in much the same way . . .



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« #48 : March 17, 2008, 03:24:43 AM »

Oh I agree with most of what you say about True Grit, looking at it now its a treasure for those reasons,  but I look at Deadwood and see it going to the extreme. Deadwood became more of a Western Soap Opera, heavily dialog driven making it a bit too comonplace, almost like everyday life. The West in reality was probably for most people was just as boring as today's everyday existance.

I guess I want more Mythology less Reality. lol


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« #49 : July 19, 2008, 05:18:56 PM »

ths was my dads fav western, ilik it, bt not as much as others

thy put it on tv so much its imposible nt to see it, but th gunfihgt in th field is still cool as hell

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« #50 : July 19, 2008, 10:31:40 PM »

Quote
thy put it on tv so much its imposible nt to see it, but th gunfihgt in th field is still cool as hell

  Fill your hands, you son of a bitch!

  One of my all-time favorite Duke lines.  It's also worth checking out the entertaining but not as good sequel "Rooster Cogburn...and the Lady" to see Wayne team with Katharine Hepburn, truly a great pairing of two actors in the twilight of their careers.



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« #51 : July 20, 2008, 05:05:37 AM »

The words "Katharine" and "Hepburn" put me off watching that one more than anything else. :D



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« #52 : July 20, 2008, 08:24:27 AM »

She had her moments, but they were all in the 30s and 40s. As an older actress her mannerisms were just annoying.



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« #53 : July 20, 2008, 03:22:04 PM »

She had her moments, but they were all in the 30s and 40s. As an older actress her mannerisms were just annoying.

The only movie to date I've liked her in was Summertime. Although to be fair, I didn't want to kill her through most of The Philadelphia Story.



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« #54 : July 20, 2008, 03:27:55 PM »

I like her in PS too. I recently saw her on TCM in Woman of the Year (her first film with Tracy) and in some scenes she was actually--would you believe?--sexy.



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« #55 : July 20, 2008, 03:39:59 PM »

I like her in PS too. I recently saw her on TCM in Woman of the Year (her first film with Tracy) and in some scenes she was actually--would you believe?--sexy.

Katharine Hepburn and sexy in the same sentence? :o That's not possible on any planet I'm familiar with... :-\

Have you seen Summertime Jenkins?



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« #56 : July 20, 2008, 04:05:11 PM »

Nope.



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« #57 : July 20, 2008, 04:27:01 PM »

Given your ambivalence towards Mr. Lean, I don't know if I would recommend it to you on spec. But the fact that I actually sympathized with Hepburn's character, given my track record of wanting to throw her through a plate glass window, says a good deal in and of itself.



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« #58 : July 20, 2008, 08:50:56 PM »

Well, that's something. I've always avoided it because I (usually) can't stand Hepburn. I eventually want to see all of Lean's films, and was saving that one for last. I guess I can go ahead a see it, what?



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« #59 : July 21, 2008, 06:23:34 AM »

I dunno, Jinkies. You and I have... disagreed before... :o



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