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Red Riding Trilogy


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#41 Ryan H.

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 04:18 PM

That pretty much sums up my experience with it. Anne and I have been through the first two installments and were impressed, but yeah, I don't think I'll ever watch them again, and the bitter aftertaste of the first two have prevented us from choosing the third installment during one of our evenings together. I'm sure we will eventually, and I'm glad to hear that the last chapter might not leave us feeling so awful.

I don't want to prematurely judge these films, but based on what many others have said, it seems that these films could have done more to vary the tone. Manohla Dargis describes these films as infected with "miserablism."

But they are very well made.

Yeah. RR1974 had a pretty strong sense of style (even if it is indebted to ZODIAC). It makes nice use of weird wallpaper.

Edited by Ryan H., 28 March 2011 - 04:21 PM.


#42 Christian

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Posted 29 March 2011 - 09:32 PM

1980 may be "miserable," as Dargis notes, but its stylistically quite different from 1974, yet has another wild finish. Not sure I'm going to warm to those final minutes the way I feel an odd warming, or strange admiration, for the utterly off-putting conclusion of 1974, but these things are hard to predict. I think I may have preferred the second film to the first -- until its finale -- if only because the more straight-ahead procedural feel was less demanding on me as a viewer, and after that first flick, "less" is more.

Unlike Jeffrey, I'm eager to see the final chapter. I don't know that I'm expecting any grand payoff, but I was able to grab both 1980 and 1983, and want a sense of closure -- even if the movies themselves don't provide it for me.

Oh, and I'll make sure
Spoiler
.

Edited by Christian, 29 March 2011 - 09:34 PM.


#43 NBooth

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Posted 29 March 2011 - 09:52 PM

1980 may be "miserable," as Dargis notes, but its stylistically quite different from 1974, yet has another wild finish. Not sure I'm going to warm to those final minutes the way I feel an odd warming, or strange admiration, for the utterly off-putting conclusion of 1974, but these things are hard to predict. I think I may have preferred the second film to the first -- until its finale -- if only because the more straight-ahead procedural feel was less demanding on me as a viewer, and after that first flick, "less" is more.


These endings make the movies for me, but that might be a personal quirk. But yeah, 1974 ends on a wild, almost apocalyptic note that the ending of 1980 doesn't quite hit (primarily because the ending of the latter movie is much more out-of-the-blue, though on rewatch it's certainly easy to pick up clues).

Regarding style, I think a real strength of this trilogy is exactly the way each movie is different from the first; it's like having multiple narrators crossing and re-crossing story lines (something I presume Peace does in the Red Riding Quartet, and something he definitely does in his current Tokyo Trilogy).

Oh, and I'll make sure

Spoiler
.


:D

#44 Ryan H.

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Posted 30 March 2011 - 11:21 AM

These endings make the movies for me, but that might be a personal quirk.

Well, I've only seen RR1974, but I dug the ending. Sure, it was a big downer, but I can get behind that kind of "wild, almost apocalyptic" finale. It's more the monotone nature of the stuff before it that gets a bit on my nerves.

#45 NBooth

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 01:03 AM

James Vanderbilt to write the remake

Vanderbilt's the screenwriter for Zodiac, which was a movie mentioned often in connection to the trilogy--so that could be a good thing (he's done this sort of thing before) or bad (because it could be too tonally similar). It doesn't strike me as a bad choice, exactly; more of an obvious choice.

I have difficulty believing the re-make (or re-adaptation) could live up to the stone-cold brilliance of the original movies, but from what I understand there were several subplots removed from the books in making the first adaptation, so I guess it could work.

EDIT: The article indicates that they're wanting to do one movie.... Unless it's a six-hour movie I don't think that's a wise decision, exactly. One way they could do it would be to eliminate Eddie Dumford and the lead of the second movie and just focus on the character played by David Morrisey. But wouldn't that steal much of the character's complexity--to say nothing of the slow unwrapping of layers like we see in the current films? I guess it's to early to speculate at this point.

Edited by NBooth, 15 May 2011 - 01:11 AM.


#46 Persona

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 08:27 AM

I am tired of reacting negatively to all of these sequels and remakes, so I'll just say, "Good luck, Mr. Vanderbilt."

With Let Me In turning out as well as it did and Fincher working on The the Millennium Trilogy, I have to second guess a negative reaction. Still, has it always been so quickly that an original work was remade, or is the lack of creativity these days forcing remakes to be done much sooner?

Edited by Persona, 15 May 2011 - 08:29 AM.


#47 NBooth

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 09:22 AM

Still, has it always been so quickly that an original work was remade, or is the lack of creativity these days forcing remakes to be done much sooner?


Well, The Maltese Falcon was adapted three time over the course of ten years, which would give you a roughly similar distance between each version. Of course, the two versions preceding the Huston film are reportedly terrible, so it's not quite the same as taking an already-good movie (or already-respected in the case of Dragon Tattoo ;) ) and re-making it; The Magnificent Seven came out six years after The Seven Samurai--which, allowing for production-time and development hell, might wind up being closer to the space between the two iterations of Red Riding (I'm not up on the biz, so that may be all wet). A Fistful of Dollars came out three years after Yojimbo, but since it's an "unofficial" remake, it might not count. More recently, Point of No Return remade La Femme Nikita after a space of three years (that one was by the same director, though, so again it might be considered a special case).


Those are just some that come immediately to mind (or to a brief glance at Wikipedia; they have a whole list of remakes, naturally, but since I'm using my cell phone as a source of internet right now it's not exactly wanting to work for me; presumably one could see the trend more readily there). Whether the uptick in immediate remakes (in proportion to other projects) is really that big is, of course, above my pay grade and expertise.

Edited by NBooth, 15 May 2011 - 09:26 AM.


#48 Ryan H.

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 09:27 AM

Well, The Maltese Falcon was adapted three time over the course of ten years, which would give you a roughly similar distance between each version. Of course, the two versions preceding the Huston film are reportedly terrible, so it's not quite the same as taking an already-good movie (or already-respected in the case of Dragon Tattoo ;) ) and re-making it

The 1931 version of MALTESE FALCON doesn't deserve to be called "terrible." It's not amazing, but it's decent.

#49 NBooth

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 09:34 AM

Well, The Maltese Falcon was adapted three time over the course of ten years, which would give you a roughly similar distance between each version. Of course, the two versions preceding the Huston film are reportedly terrible, so it's not quite the same as taking an already-good movie (or already-respected in the case of Dragon Tattoo ;) ) and re-making it

The 1931 version of MALTESE FALCON doesn't deserve to be called "terrible." It's not amazing, but it's decent.

Point taken. I've not seen it or 'Satan met a Lady' and I think negative word on one got confused with the other.

#50 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 12:12 PM

Still, has it always been so quickly that an original work was remade, or is the lack of creativity these days forcing remakes to be done much sooner?

Well, The Maltese Falcon was adapted three time over the course of ten years, which would give you a roughly similar distance between each version. Of course, the two versions preceding the Huston film are reportedly terrible, so it's not quite the same as taking an already-good movie (or already-respected in the case of Dragon Tattoo ;) ) and re-making it; The Magnificent Seven came out six years after The Seven Samurai--which, allowing for production-time and development hell, might wind up being closer to the space between the two iterations of Red Riding (I'm not up on the biz, so that may be all wet). A Fistful of Dollars came out three years after Yojimbo, but since it's an "unofficial" remake, it might not count. More recently, Point of No Return remade La Femme Nikita after a space of three years (that one was by the same director, though, so again it might be considered a special case).

Most of the examples you cite represent a remake in another language, though. The Maltese Falcon does not, but the three versions you cite were all produced before America entered World War II, in other words they were all produced at a time when no one had TV or home video (and every major studio put out a new movie every week, or 50 movies per year), so the recycling of one's source material was not as big a deal.

What's interesting about the remake of THIS trilogy is that it would appear to be an English-to-English remake -- an American remake of a British film -- not unlike the two versions of Death at a Funeral that were produced on opposite sides of the Atlantic only three years apart (in 2007 and 2010).

#51 NBooth

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 12:59 PM

Most of the examples you cite represent a remake in another language, though. The Maltese Falcon does not, but the three versions you cite were all produced before America entered World War II, in other words they were all produced at a time when no one had TV or home video (and every major studio put out a new movie every week, or 50 movies per year), so the recycling of one's source material was not as big a deal.

What's interesting about the remake of THIS trilogy is that it would appear to be an English-to-English remake -- an American remake of a British film -- not unlike the two versions of Death at a Funeral that were produced on opposite sides of the Atlantic only three years apart (in 2007 and 2010).


Well, yeah; most of the examples cited before (Let Me In and the new Dragon Tattoo movie) also represent a remake in another language, so that's the more general question I was responding to. But point taken about the sheer number of movies put out circa-1931 (although part of me wants to argue that the general principle--that the remake has always been with us, for better or worse--holds true no matter how many movies are put out).

I didn't think of Death at a Funeral. It does seem more to-the-point. Although, there, the setting was moved to America as well, yes? Which can't really be done without doing violence to the very core of what Red Riding is about (which reminds me...I presume that the Yorkshire accents won't be as thick in the movie, but will they try them at all, like how Fincher reportedly wants his actors to put on accents for Dragon Tattoo? Which move would make this particular remake less distinct from its original than DatF. And that--more than its being a remake--could be a problem).

#52 NBooth

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 09:15 AM

I have difficulty believing the re-make (or re-adaptation) could live up to the stone-cold brilliance of the original movies, but from what I understand there were several subplots removed from the books in making the first adaptation, so I guess it could work.


I just finished reading 1974 and the above turns out to have been an understatement; if the plot of the movie is complicated, the plot of the book is positively labyrinthine. There's a missing (rugby? football/soccer?) player who turns out to be central to the climax, for starters, and John Dawson (movie version) turns out to be an amalgamation of about three different characters from the book, each of whom is involved in the murder of Claire Kemplay in a different way (not a spoiler, since everyone is involved in the murder somehow--that's what the book's about). BJ gets a couple more scenes, as well.

Most notably, the ray of hope that we get in 1974 just before the conclusion of the movie is absolutely absent here. It starts dark and gets darker and then blows up.

All of which is to say--it's easy to see how a good re-adaptation of the book could be not only different, but wildly different, from the first movie--oddly enough, by hewing closer to the novel (in that way, it's the opposite of the situation I understand them as having with Let the Right One In, where the original movie follows the book pretty closely for most of its running). But that's only if they're looking at a series; if they try to condense all four books into one movie--and if each book is as complicated as this--they're cooking up a disaster of a movie.

EDIT: Here's the biggest difference between the book and the movie:
Spoiler


That's a pretty big departure for the adaptation, right there.

Edited by NBooth, 18 June 2011 - 09:25 AM.


#53 Tyler

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Posted 02 July 2011 - 09:23 PM

Started watching this on Netflix, and I've glad they added a subtitles option.

#54 Tyler

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 11:37 PM

Okay, I finished the trilogy tonight. Two questions:
Spoiler


#55 NBooth

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 12:41 AM

Okay, I finished the trilogy tonight. Two questions:

Spoiler

Unless I missed something,
Spoiler


#56 Persona

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 07:27 AM

Started watching this on Netflix, and I've glad they added a subtitles option.

I'm pretty sure that this was added later. I remember trying to watch it, needing the subtitles, and waiting for the DVDs.

Yeah, the only way to watch this is with the subs.

#57 Tyler

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 08:22 AM


Started watching this on Netflix, and I've glad they added a subtitles option.

I'm pretty sure that this was added later. I remember trying to watch it, needing the subtitles, and waiting for the DVDs.

Yeah, the only way to watch this is with the subs.


They only had subtitles for 1974. For the other two, I had to figure out what they were saying on my own. I think the accents were thicker in the first one, though.


Okay, I finished the trilogy tonight. Two questions:

Spoiler

Unless I missed something,
Spoiler


Yeah, I thought it could be that, too. It's always hard to tell when they've gone into a flashback. But
Spoiler


#58 NBooth

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 09:53 AM



Started watching this on Netflix, and I've glad they added a subtitles option.

I'm pretty sure that this was added later. I remember trying to watch it, needing the subtitles, and waiting for the DVDs.

Yeah, the only way to watch this is with the subs.


They only had subtitles for 1974. For the other two, I had to figure out what they were saying on my own. I think the accents were thicker in the first one, though.


Okay, I finished the trilogy tonight. Two questions:

Spoiler

Unless I missed something,
Spoiler


Yeah, I thought it could be that, too. It's always hard to tell when they've gone into a flashback. But
Spoiler


I'll have to rewatch, but I thought the interrogation scene was also a flashback (it occurs while the guy who is forced out of power in 1980--Molloy?--is still Jobson's superior). I recall thinking, both times I watched the movie, that of all the films 1983 is the one that occurs least in its titular year, since it's mostly Jobson working through his compromised career. That the Yorkshire police knew who the real killer was in 1974 but let him go on behest of John Dawson is one of the things that finally drive Jobson to make the move he does in the end.

At any rate, Dawson has to be dead because
Spoiler

Edited by NBooth, 06 July 2011 - 09:57 AM.


#59 Tyler

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Posted 06 July 2011 - 12:34 PM

Yeah, that makes sense.

#60 NBooth

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Posted 24 July 2011 - 09:25 AM

Link to our thread on David Peace in the Literature section.

Oh, and in case it hasn't already shown up, here's a link to our thread on The Damned United, which shares an author with the Red Riding Quartet.

Edited by NBooth, 24 July 2011 - 09:30 AM.