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Plot Device

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Everything posted by Plot Device

  1. Caught me at a bad toime, Peter. I have an appointment in two hours and can't hang too long today. I'll need to read this stuff this weekend. And I DO wanna read it. Umm .... not sure. I never saw the movie. But here are my thoughts: 1) The square on his collar is too freakin' huge. 2) The fluffy clouds are just too ... fluffy 3) That round thing dominating the image is either a stained glass window or an offering plate. If it's a plate, then we're talking about money money and more money. 4) I do not see a cross ANYWHERE in the image, not even on top of the church (maybe conveniently obscured by the superimposed words). So if the round thing is a stained glass window, then the prefered emphasis of the artist was upon a meaningless window instead of the cross. The exclusion of the cross from the cover art seems to be a rather pointless excercize. All the other trappings are there, why shun the cross? Is the cross the visual equivalent of the "F" word? Like Sh|t and Damn and Hell and b|tch are all allowed, but not THAT one. "Give us a stained glass window, boy, but don't you dare draw a cross!" 5) He's holding his Bible a little too "angelically" for my tastes. (That was one of my gripes about Oliver Stone's "World Trade Center"--the Marine Corp guy held his shoulders up in perfectly squared off posters, and always had the most overly-posed and unnaturaly symetrical demeanor, even while kneeling in the pew at church. No one in real life stands so perfectly and holds their head up in church, gazing at the cross so piously, unless they're mentally ill or a flagrant poser.)
  2. I rented it two years ago, and when it was done I immediately went out and bought myself a White Castle burger for the very first time in my life, just to see what I was missing. Not bad little burgers. The movie? Funny!!! Very funny!! I enjoyed it a lot. It was clever about the racial issues it addressed, not merely crass about them.
  3. Opus, in the same vein, I notice he only went after huge blockbusters. Not one of those films was a bomb. And they were also the kind of films that left an "indelible mark" on us culturally.
  4. A cop once explained to me the difference between a psychopath and a sociopath. He said psychopaths imagine things that aren't there (monsters, voices, smells, etc.) and if you also toss in some paranoia, the monsters and smells will be chasing after them. If they try to protect themselves from the monsters and voices, that's when they can sometimes wind up hurting and/or killing people that they mistakenly thought were the monsters. (in New York State, this is the only acceptable definition of an insanity plea: you thought you were killing Martians not people.) But sociopaths have no morals at all. They can kill and feel nothing inwardly. So a sociopath doesn't have a problem perceiving physical reality the way a psychopath does. Instead he has a problem stopping himself from acting on certain impulses, or from slowly and methodically reasoning himself into and through a reprehnsible act. No monsters or smells afflict sociopaths, just a lack of internal stopping mechanisms. If any of the psyche majors here wanna correct me, please do so. But if this cop gave me the proper information, I'd say a psychopath can be transformed via medication,while a sociopath might be completely unchangeable (outside of a miracle from God). As for the question of salvation (the Jesus kind) I believe the spiritual transformation found in salvation can/does operate separate from the mind. But after Hanibal Lechter gets saved, he will still have a faulty moral center and will need the Holy Spirit to perpetually help him NOT make morally reprehensible choices in the future, or else he'll need a full blown supernatural overhaul of those twisted moral inclinations.
  5. Wow! Such extensive training in Church history, Ellen! Where did you learn all this?
  6. This I didn't realize about Lutherans. I had a Lutheran roommate for a while there. She was a blonde-haired, blue-eyes German girl from the Mid-West too. We never discussed the subject, so I missed this one. One thing I have found to be part of Hollywood's "shorthand" is: the bigger and more grotesquely rendered a Jesus-bearing crucifix is (either on a wall or around a neck), the more crazy the Christian character will turn out to be. Small and discreet crosses (like what Scully wears on the X-Files) indicate a more level-headed individual. I know that in Pennsylvania, a lot of churches (when I say "a lot" I mean a sizeable number) don't have ANY crosses at all. This is spill-over influence from the Amish/Mennonite/Quaker legacy of the area which has the tradition that no iconic imagery is allowed at all in a church, not even crosses. Missed that film. But I'm not saying ONLY films portraying Christians get it wrong. I just feel that TOO MANY films get it wrong. And it's always the same stuff again and again that they get wrong. I feel it's fair to compare this to the endless parade of films back in the 30's that portrayed Blacks as eating watermelon and using bad grammer. When are they gonna smarten up?
  7. Plot Device

    28 Weeks Later

    I saw the trailer for it yesterday while watching The Reaping. (BTW, here's the only thread I found here at A&F for the original movie). They seem to be borrowing just a little bit from Children of Men in that trailer with the idea that the 12 year old boy is the youngest person in England, and the urgent need to keep him alive, and faceless soldiers killing everyone in sight in a dystopian England of the near-future. Now I'm sure the actual plot isn't going to be about some urgent globally-important need to keep that 12 year old boy alive. But this is how they're packaging the trailer.
  8. Plot Device

    Ghost Rider

    It's still true in Hollywood that any time a film breaks $100 million, it's a film to be respected (unless the budget was $200 million, and in that event you gotta try and make up the diference in foriegn tickets and DVD sales). The budget for this movie was an eye-popping (but not unheard of now adays) $110 million. And the world-wide take is $215 million. So at this point, they broke even, and there's still more money that will filter in over the next six weeks before they finally pull it out of circulation and go to cable and DVD. I'd say this movie was a success.
  9. So ... what this article saying is ............... one of the kings of Disco music destroyed an important landmark of Country music. I hear the rumblings of a Nashville Jihad awakening against the citizens of Detroit.
  10. The thing that totally kills me about stuff like that is NO ONE in the entire production process--from script revisions to cast meetings to the actual day of shooting such scenes--NO ONE raises a hand and says "A Baptist minister would never say a Hail Mary." Or, if anyone DOES object, the powers that be ignore the objections. Do not Christians write letters and say "That was incorrect"?? And what becomes of these letters? What about Hollywood consultants? What about the Cardinal in Los Angeles? My feeling is, if it bugs ME, then surely it must bug other people too. How can this kind of inaccuracy go on in Hollywood films for YEARS at a time, and not cause letters and e-mails? And crucifixes really get me going! I grew up Catholic and so crucifixes were a regular part of my life. Catholic crucifixes always had the semi-naked, boney looking, swooned and languishing Jesus hanging on them by his palms and anles. Then when I went Protestant I was adamantly told that Protestant crosses (either as jewelry or hanging on a wall) will NEVER have Jesus on them. "He's no longer on the cross. The cross is empty and so is the tomb. He is risen. We Protestants are proud to display empty crosses. Empty crosses are a celebration of his miracle." And that became the point of separation in my mind between Catholic crosses and Protestant ones. Seeing Protestants in film and television with Catholic-looking crosses just makes me shake my head and ponder how these elements of the Christian sub-culture can be so CONSISTENTLY lost on Hollywood.
  11. I think I recall that scene also. I really don't like any sort of responsive participation in a church service. It kinda creeps me out (like that scene in that film is supposed to). And yet I have met other people who think it's the coolest thing. "Refreshing," one person said. To each his own.
  12. Methinks the time has come for a little blatant self-promotion. And now, back to our regularly scheduled program... This is funny, Nick! Thank you! And congrats on the album! Yeah, that's a good one. I need to add this to the "missed opportunities rewrite" along with the alcohol thing. As a side note, I was watching the news a few months ago and they did a story on .. something (I don't recall what -- some social issue about the internet I think) ... and one of the experts they interviewed to discuss it was an Anglican priest. And he was FAT!! And I noticed with my film-trained eyes that they chose to shoot him in lighting and at angles that drew atention to his obesity. It was nothing short of deliberate in my esyimation. Yes! Totally yes! And what really kills me is whe non-Catholic characters bless themselves with the sign of the cross!
  13. I saw an interview with the producers of that show who very gingerly explained that they were obligated (ordered?) to be very VERY careful with the character. And while they didn't SAY it, I kinda SUSPECT they would have liked to have ditched the character's altruism and dirtied him up a bit and given him a dark side.
  14. Plot Device

    Grindhouse

    Question is, when are we going to see a release of Edgar Wright's Don't? Soon, I hope! Out of all the fake trailers, that was the one that looked like it maybe coulda actually been a real film, and one that I also maybe might like to see.
  15. Just a quick comment... I have not yet reached a point of discomfort over box office records. Meaning: I have not yet been dismayed to learn that certain films just tickle people pink to such a degree that they go back and see them again and again to the point of breaking records. The success of 300 does not fill me with dread and despair. I think it's kinda cool. And, Peter, to answer your question, I don't think TPotC qualifies in the same category as 300. I slot TPotC as a Biblical epic and 300 as a sword and sandals battle epic.
  16. One of the things about film is that it started out in the hands of "the common man." It's one of the few (maybe the only) art forms NEVER to belong to the literati or the inteligentia. The snobs have anexed their elite little corner of Movie Heaven, but they are neither the founding fathers, nor the majority speakers. If anything, they're squatters. I think one way of looking at ALL art, is that some arts can be partaken while you are alone, and other art forms must be imbibed in a group setting. Film is one of those group-arts. While it's possible to watch a movie alone, it was never meant to be taken in seclusion. And so, when the reaction of the group is at stake, the need to find a greater commonality in the art form is increased. Movies must appeal broadly. They can't be so esoteric and elusive as to defy group enjoyment. And this sets film up as a punching bag of art elitists.
  17. There was another attempt to squeeze blood (I mean) a film out of a painting. One of Norman Rockwell's works called Breaking Home Ties. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0093647/ http://movies.aol.com/movie/breaking-home-...004446/synopsis This Kincaid effort seems more of a genuine story. But you can just see them trying to tie in the painting with the movie posters/DVD covers.
  18. I totally loved his strips. Dry and ironic, often filled with subtle puns. He was an awesome cartoonist. He will be missed.
  19. This guy's not a Christian, but I do frequent his blog almost every day. He's shooting a movie right now and today's post is an open invitation for people to drop by the set. http://www.milliondollarscreenwriting.com/blog/?p=163 He's being kinda cryptic about it. But if anyone here is in or around Atlanta, you might wanna check it out.
  20. My Cadbury egg with white and yellow center, Easter bunny's gift. Breathtaking!
  21. Cadbury eggs. Yummy. Can't see haiku from them though.
  22. I'm not surprised - she's also famous for eating with gusto (can't find a link to the famous story about her eating chicken, though) and was, in general, very down to earth - important for a mystic. Never heard of ehrbefore this week. But if she liked to eat she musta been cool.
  23. Congratulations. Fourth Line Films What does the name mean? ::EDIT:: Oops! Never mind! I just read it on your web site.
  24. Yes. In fact, spent the past 45 minutes on two separate site searches. One was for the entire web site, and one just for the "lists" sub-forum. Both turned up nada. If you have the links to those two threads, that'd be cool. Again, very helpful.
  25. That would be kind of self-defeating. It's in the Humor section, after all. Caption from a John Callahan cartoon: "This is a feminist bookstore! There is no humor section!" Just read in a Christian blog today called Confessions of a Bad Christian: and from the same blog: And as for YOU, Darrel: Not a model HOLLYWOOD minister.
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