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Author Topic: Cinema Retro Movie Classics Dollars Trilogy Special Edition  (Read 38851 times)
dave jenkins
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« Reply #45 on: December 25, 2011, 05:01:50 AM »

Yeah, D&D, you need to make it clear when you're talking about actual mistakes and when you're talking about a difference of opinion. And when it's a matter of opinion, you should credit the writer of the article you're taking issue with.

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« Reply #46 on: December 25, 2011, 05:04:51 AM »

But that only an opinion not a mistake. And I assume most people will follow here the Cinema Retro opinion. I do.

For Leone it was a style question, not for Joe. Joe is a pragmatic who doesn't care for style.

A) Just like as Yojimbo, where he needed to negate the baddie's advantage of having a pistol -- which he did by throwing a knife at the baddie's wrist, as I recall -- so did Joe have a problem in FOD: how to negate Ramon's advantage of having a Winchester. If Joe was really using the smoke as a means of masking his arrival and gaining an advantage, then he would have used the smoke to be able to sneak up closer, and by the time the smoke cleared,  he would have already been standing in pistol range, thus negating Ramon's advantage of having the Winchester (or perhaps he would have even already drawn and started firing the second the smoke clears). But that is not what happened. When the smoke clears, we see Joe still standing far away, well out of pistol range. So the smoke did not in fact provide him any advantage; the only use it had was pure style.

and btw, I recall Frayling saying a similar thing on the dvd commentary (not that Frayling can't be wrong, but in this instance I totally agree with him). Throughout the commentary, Frayling was emphasizing, how this hero was different from other Western heroes. So in that final scene, I remember Frayling talking about how you'd expect him to use the dynamite to his advantage eg. blow up the Rojos, but instead he just uses it to make a grand appearance.

B) I am not sure what you mean that style was an issue for Leone but not for Joe. Joe does whatever Leone wants him to. There is no Joe. It's all fiction! (Unless I am misunderstanding you), that's like saying: in The Godfather Part II, Coppola had Hyman Roth killed for one reason, but Michael didn't care for Coppola's reason and instead did it for a different reason.

Hellooooooo -- there is no real Michael Corleone-- he is a figment of Coppola's imagination! Michael does whatever he does for the reasons Coppola assigns; he has no motivations or desires independent of what his script has. Everything Michael does is just because Coppola wants him to do that; his motivation is whatever motivation Coppola makes him have. Just like when you play a video game: you pull the joystick and the little electronic figure on the screen fires the weapon, or swings the baseball bat, or shoots the basketball. Why does he do that? Cuz you pulled the joystick and made him do it, that's why. He has none of his own reasons for doing anything. Saying that Leone did something for one reason while Joe did something for a different reason makes no sense to me. Are you really saying Leone did something for style but Joe had a different reason for doing it?

I mean, if you want to say that Leone had Joe do something for style but in your view it didn't fit well with Joe's personality -- in other words, that you would have changed that part of the script, cuz you feel it has a character do something that doesn't fit with his personality -- that is fine. But to say that Leone had one reason for doing something but Joe had another makes no sense  Roll Eyes

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« Reply #47 on: December 25, 2011, 05:25:20 AM »

Yeah, D&D, you need to make it clear when you're talking about actual mistakes and when you're talking about a difference of opinion. And when it's a matter of opinion, you should credit the writer of the article you're taking issue with.

The writer of that piece is Lee Pfeiffer.

Of course, if my disagreement is on a matter of opinion, rather than a fact, I would note it. But I never thought for a moment that there was any doubt that the dynamite is used purely for style. As I note in the above post, Joe gained no other advantage from using it.

(besides, doesn't that fit well with the Cristian death and resurrection theme of the movie? I mean, everything you read and hear about the movie -- whether in Frayling's works, Cumbow's book, or the magazine in question -- discuss how much of it is an allegory to the story of Christ -- Joe on the mule, getting "crucified," the Holy Family Joseph Mary and Baby Jesus, The Last Supper, and the Christ figure's death and resurrection. So doesn't it make sense that the resurrection would happen smoke and in style? I'm not saying that Joe couldn't be doing something for style purposes even if the movie was not about Christianity, but the fact that it is gives me just another reason to prove I'm right  Wink )

Anyway, bottom line is that the explosion and smoke gives Joe a spectacular entrance in style, but gives him no strategic/tactical advantage. So I never considered the possibility that the explosion could be anything but for style purposes.


-------

Come to think of it: I hate how during the holidays, I can never find anything playing on the classic movie channels other than holiday movies, which i have zero interest in. But now I wonder: why don't they just play FOD?  Wink


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« Reply #48 on: December 25, 2011, 12:13:26 PM »



B) I am not sure what you mean that style was an issue for Leone but not for Joe. Joe does whatever Leone wants him to. There is no Joe. It's all fiction! (Unless I am misunderstanding you), that's like saying: in The Godfather Part II, Coppola had Hyman Roth killed for one reason, but Michael didn't care for Coppola's reason and instead did it for a different reason.

Hellooooooo -- there is no real Michael Corleone-- he is a figment of Coppola's imagination! Michael does whatever he does for the reasons Coppola assigns; he has no motivations or desires independent of what his script has. Everything Michael does is just because Coppola wants him to do that; his motivation is whatever motivation Coppola makes him have. Just like when you play a video game: you pull the joystick and the little electronic figure on the screen fires the weapon, or swings the baseball bat, or shoots the basketball. Why does he do that? Cuz you pulled the joystick and made him do it, that's why. He has none of his own reasons for doing anything. Saying that Leone did something for one reason while Joe did something for a different reason makes no sense to me. Are you really saying Leone did something for style but Joe had a different reason for doing it?

I mean, if you want to say that Leone had Joe do something for style but in your view it didn't fit well with Joe's personality -- in other words, that you would have changed that part of the script, cuz you feel it has a character do something that doesn't fit with his personality -- that is fine. But to say that Leone had one reason for doing something but Joe had another makes no sense  Roll Eyes

Michael Corleone is real, Joe not. And I wouldn't have changed that part of the script.

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« Reply #49 on: December 26, 2011, 06:09:02 AM »

p. 32, right column: Lee Van Cleef "had turned to housepainting in order to earn a meager livelihood."

I distinctly remember Frayling saying that LVC was a painter "...not a painter of houses, but a painter of paintings." (I can't swear this is word for word what he said, but it's pretty damn close).

of course, I have no idea wtf LVC was doing to make a living; I am just pointing out that either Frayling or Cinema Retro are wrong.

The only thing is that I can't recall where I heard Frayling say that, but I am 100% sure he said it.

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« Reply #50 on: December 26, 2011, 06:21:17 AM »

A) p. 37, second column: Manco "does, however, surprise the colonel by producing the musical watch that Indio stole from Mortimer during the night."

Really? I don't believe Indio stole the watch from Mortimer during the night. We previously discussed (on p. 2 of this thread http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=6102.15 ) how Manco got ahold of that watch, and I believe we decided Mortimer must have lost it while he was being beaten, and Manco had recovered it.

But we certainly don't see Indio stealing it; and even if he had, Manco would never had had an opportunity to recover it from Indio.



B) p. 37, right column, final sentence of the first paragraph: "The final scene of the film finds the Stranger riding off into the sunset with his macabre inventory of dead bodies..."

Wrong again, Cinema Retro. It's Mortimer who rides off into the sunset.

(btw, As I've noted elsewhere, that is an obvious mistake, how Manco could be in broad daylight while Mortimer is riding into the sunset. Even if Mortimer is riding West and Manco is riding in a different direction, at that time of day, nobody would be in such bright light as Manco is, even if they are not riding westward.

However, I just listened to Frayling's commentary on FAFDM, and he said an interesting point during that final scene: Mnaco represents Leone's "new kind of hero," while Mortimer represents the classic Hollywood hero, ie. he is a moral man, who doesn't work strictly for cash, etc. Therefore, his music there ["Goodbye, Colonel] is more orchestral -- like the classic Hollywood scores, and he rides off into the sunset, like so many classic Hollywood heroes did. Therefore, if Leone was trying to make that deliberate point, then it makes sense to have Mortimer ride off into the sunset while Manco is in bright sunlight. But otherwise, I'd consider that a continuity error, for the level of sunlight Manco is in should be what is at sunset).


C) p. 46, left column, first full sentence (discussing LVC): "When the conductor challenges him, a mere glance at the colonel's ominous face convinces the man to meekly mind his own business."


I guess this should go in the "IMO" category rather than the "clear mistakes" category, but it seems to me that the conductor decides to "meekly mind his own business" after he sees LVC's gun, not his face.


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« Reply #51 on: December 26, 2011, 06:50:13 AM »

on p. 42, there is an interesting point:

It says that between the scene where Indio and Nino bring the chest with the money into the hideout, and the scene where Manco sneaks out at night to try to get the money, a sequence was filmed showing the gang partying with women in the hideout. There are some stills from that sequence, which was "deleted by Leone at the editing stage."

I wonder why Leone deleted this sequence?

I know that there sex scenes with Eastwood that were deleted both in FAFDM and GBU; perhaps Leone thought it would add to the mystique of the character if he is not shown with a weakness for women or something like that: this is a world where your life depends upon a mere scrap of information, where you have  to keep your with about you, and women are a distraction and danger to the gunslinger who must always be on alert.
 But what would be wrong with showing the gang partying with women? (As you see in the photos, Manco is one of those partying with the women, cuz he is pretending to be part of the gang of course; I can't imagine Leone wouldn't include it for that reason, cuz he didn't wanna show Manco with a chick under any circumstances? I mean, he is pretending to be one of the gang; surely, if they are all partying, he's gotta do that too so as not to arouse suspicion.)

Perhaps it was deleted cuz Leone thought that the gang wouldn't be partying like that (in what appears to be their hideaway), with hundreds of thousands of dollars hidden nearby. Perhaps he thought they'd lay low and certainly not wanna invite any outsiders -- including women -- to the hideaway... Who knows. As the magazine notes, both this sequence, "and the hotelier's wife sequence that was deleted, is not mentioned on the special edition DVD released by MGM."

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« Reply #52 on: December 27, 2011, 03:51:10 AM »

Thanks for this stuff, once  Afro

According to that bio, "During his time away from acting, Lee began a business in interior decoration with wife Joanie, as well as pursuing his talent for painting, primarily of sea and landscapes."

As I said in my earlier post, Frayling emphasized that LVC was a painter - of paintings, and not of houses. while I don't remember where I heard Frayling say it, I he definitely did say it somewhere.

However, I wonder if perhaps LVC also did housepainting as part of his and his wife's interior decorating business? I have no idea whether or not interior decorators actually do painting themselves, but if they do, then maybe the Cinema Retro could indeed be squared with Frayling's comments: ie. maybe Frayling's statement that LVC was a painter of paintings and not of houses -- was said just to make sure the viewer understood him, that he was referring to LVC's painting paintings, and not painting houses. However, maybe it also happened to be that LVD did paint houses as well as part of his interior decorating business. Who knows  Azn

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« Reply #53 on: December 27, 2011, 07:42:49 AM »

Usually "painting houses" / "house painting" means doing exterior work. If you were going to refer to someone doing painting as part of his interior decorating work, you'd just say he was an interior decorator. I think the  CinemaRetro people just garbled the message.

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« Reply #54 on: December 27, 2011, 02:08:39 PM »

I think the  CinemaRetro people just garbled the message.

wouldn't be the first time  Wink

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« Reply #55 on: December 31, 2011, 06:53:32 PM »

p. 60, the caption on the bottom left reads: "Tuco takes a beating while Blondie hears his screams from outside..."

Wrong. The band was playing to drown out the screams. (Blondie only knew Tuco was getting beaten cuz the prisoner next to him said that he gets beaten while the band plays). There is nothing to believe that Tuco's screams could be heard over the band.

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« Reply #56 on: December 31, 2011, 07:09:48 PM »

A) p. 66, top line: "Towards the end of A Fistful of Dollars, the coffin-maker... refers to the otherwise anonymous stranger as "Joe," thereby inadvertently sparking a controversy" over the Stranger's name

Not (entirely) true. Yes, the coffin-maker refers to him as "Joe" in the final scene after he's dispatched of all the Rojos, but he also does it earlier, when he prepares the two empty coffins for him. That's at 32:35 of the movie, certainly not "towards the end."


B) p.70, discussing the various paintings of the cannons for posters of GBU, the magazine contradicts itself:

On the left side of the page, It shows 3 separate drawings with Blondie and the cannon:
i) in the top drawing, the cannon is facing backward;
ii) in the middle one, it's facing sideways;
iii) and in the bottom one, it's facing the viewer.

In the captions of these drawings, it says that the bottom one, (of the cannon facing the viewer), "... is probably the rarest of all the styles."

But on the top of the page, there is a paragraph discussing the various drawings, under the heading "Clint's Cannon." In that paragraph, it says "The rarest image is that of the cannon painted side-ways..." (ie. the middle of the drawings).

So which is it, Cinema Retro? The bottom or the middle? Can't you even get your stuff straight on the same page?

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« Reply #57 on: December 31, 2011, 07:23:46 PM »

That's it. I am done reading this special edition.

If I find any more mistakes in subsequent readings, of course I'll list them.

And if any of y'all are reading this issue, please list any mistakes you find as well.


Some final thoughts:

-- It's a big magazine with no ads, and there are some really nice and cool pics. So for any big Leone fan, IMO the $15 (including shipping) is well worth it, no matter the mistakes. And, as noted throughout this post, there are plenty.

-- When a magazine makes as many dumb mistakes on basic plot elements, you have to wonder how many mistakes it is making on things that you are unable to know without doing your own research, such as facts about the movies' history. Considering the mistakes in basic plot elements that I easily discovered, I am certainly not confident that all the other info I got was accurate.

-- There are numerous typos throughout the magazine. While this does not necessarily mean the info contained in the magazine is incorrect, it does not reflect well on the magazine.

My bottom line: if you are a Leone fan, I recommend that you buy this issue; it's nice as a collector's item.
But if any of the editors of the magazine are reading this, or if anyone reading this knows the editors, please tell them: This issue was terrific in style, but terrible in substance. I hope that you take note of the mistakes noted in this thread, and fix them if you print any more of this Special Edition, and for any future stuff you include in your magazines about the Dollars films. These numerous, blatant mistakes, many of them about basic plot issues and indisputable, are quite frankly inexcusable. I'd considered becoming a regular subscriber to your magazine, but now I certainly will not, cuz I have no way of knowing that the info I will be getting is accurate. Get your shit together, both in terms of accuracy, as well as in terms of editing. (I didn't bother to list the typos here cuz nobody here wants to read them, but they are quite numerous). Maybe you were counting on the fact that true fans will wanna get this cuz it's a collector's item on our favorite director, and maybe you are correct. So if your goal was selling copies and making money, maybe you succeeded and maybe you didn't. Big fans may be interested in a nice collector's item with nice photos, and swallow the (numerous mistakes). But if your goal was putting out a quality product, you failed miserably. Terrific in style, terrible in substance.

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« Reply #58 on: January 01, 2012, 10:57:09 AM »

I think I've seen this comment from Frayling before but I can't remember where.
Quote from Frayling's "Something to do with death", page 183 (Leone's first encounter with Lee in Los Angeles): "..Finally, after a lot of running around, we managed to find an agent called Sid. This agent told me that Lee Van Cleef was no longer an actor, that he was a painter and that he had been in hospital for a long time..."
Furthemore, on page 184: "Sergio said: Would you accept 10.000 US$? to which LVC replied: Yes, but I've got to finish this painting first: I've promised to deliver it to a client, and I've been paid an advance.
So to me it is very clear that he was not a house painter, but definetely a real artist painter, although I wouldn't know anything about the quality of his paintings as I have never seen one...

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« Reply #59 on: January 15, 2012, 11:28:38 AM »

As someone who has been a contributor to CR ("LA RESA-TORATION OF THE BIG GUNDOWN") I suggest you write to the magazine directly about your concerns.
The editor Lee Pfeiffer, is very interested in what subscribers have to say.
Typos are a problem -I requested an opportunity to review my own article before publication because of them. As has been mentioned,  there are NO advertisements. P Plus the magazine is printed on very high quality paper and in a large page format. The staff is basically 2-3 people, It aint VANITY FAIR folks!

Overall, I can't believe Leone fans will not love this special edition. It is not intended to be the definitive, SCHOLARLY, story of the films. It is meant to be informative , entertaining, and UNIQUE. And, on that level it succeeds admirably!

Check it out!
bruce

PS Don't procrastinate. Once it sells out it will go for $100 or more on EEBAY!

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