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Old 24-05-2011, 20:15   #21
anephric
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There was an interesting article in Vanity Fair by Peter Biskind that had a lot of anecdotal evidence about how Cimino's reactionary politics went down in Hollywood at the time, contrasted with Coming Home and the luvvy left.

I think there's no doubt that The Deer Hunter is pretty reactionary, and that there's nothing ironic about the closing scene. The implication I get is not that war is inhuman, or that it makes you inhuman, it's fighting against an inhuman enemy (i.e. the V.C.) that does that. I find a lot of The Deer Hunter beautifully shot, but I can't stand it as a film.
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Old 24-05-2011, 21:10   #22
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Haven't read that Biskind article yet, though if we are supposed to gauge a director's politics from a movie, were Cimino's "reactionary" politics all that different to (say) Coppola's in Apocalypse Now, where he has the Viet Cong sever the innoculated arms of children ? Does that make us hate it as a movie ?
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Old 24-05-2011, 22:52   #23
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Apocalypse Now is more about the general madness of war/duality of man and all that good stuff, although more specifically it is about the white man returning to (and being driven mad by) nature, as in Heart of Darkness. More specifically even than that, and Redux reinforces this further with the French Plantation scene, there's the corrupting effect of colonialism, which is the fundamental core of the book. Whether you think Heart of Darkness to be a racist tract or a product of its time is open to debate. Certainly, you could say, Kurtz is driven mad by the hell of Vietnam/Africa, whether it be because civility is merely a veneer and we're all beasts underneath or it's the WHITE MAN'S GRAVEYARD! Dunno.

If I'm allowed to look elsewhere, Year of the Dragon does tend to make me think that Cimino isn't exactly reading the Guardian of a weekend. Although, then, you have his fascination with the proletarian/salt of the earth as in Heaven's Gate and The Deer Hunter. Although, outside of Nicky, he manages to depict not a single appealing character. I know Nicky's supposed to be the empathetic crux for the audience to feel for, but Jesus, did he have to make EVERYONE else an arsehole?
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Old 03-06-2011, 13:15   #24
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Caught up with the film last night and I quite like it as an intimate tearjerker. Even the heavily romanticised view of home and country has a naďve charm up until the film diverts into this simplistic, staggeringly dishonest study of a morally infallible people confronting old school evil in order to secure freedom, etc. Beautifully shot, though, and I really admire that first hour.

What’s interesting about that Biskind article is the intimation that the film’s politics may have merely been result of lazy assumptions and a lack of research rather than a specific agenda, but that’s quite hard to swallow having seen the picture.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:36   #25
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It was (I believe) the first major American Vietnam movie, so the ridiculous depiction of the Viet Cong isn't all that surprising really.....

If they'd made a movie about Al Queda in 2002, they probably would've depicted them as baby raping, virgin blood drinkers....
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:45   #26
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You're forgetting John Wayne in The Green Berets 10 years before
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Old 08-06-2011, 12:44   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anephric View Post
There was an interesting article in Vanity Fair by Peter Biskind that had a lot of anecdotal evidence about how Cimino's reactionary politics went down in Hollywood at the time, contrasted with Coming Home and the luvvy left.
Thanks for the link - interesting reading.

I've never seen Coming Home; will have to dig it out & give it a watch I think.
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Old 08-06-2011, 15:59   #28
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Quote:
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You're forgetting John Wayne in The Green Berets 10 years before
Ah, OK. I haven't seen that. It's probably even more propagandarific then.
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Old 08-06-2011, 17:15   #29
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Quote:
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Ah, OK. I haven't seen that. It's probably even more propagandarific then.
Theres a cool part where the Duke impales a cong on a branch so ya
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Old 09-06-2011, 13:42   #30
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Quote:
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It was (I believe) the first major American Vietnam movie, so the ridiculous depiction of the Viet Cong isn't all that surprising really.....

If they'd made a movie about Al Queda in 2002, they probably would've depicted them as baby raping, virgin blood drinkers....
Cimino seems to depict all Vietnamese exclusively in a poor light. Sure, the film has a predominantly conservative perspective, but you can't do that whilst portraying "our" unwavering moral incorruptibility without losing historical credibility.

It’s interesting to compare Nicky's virtuous encounter with the prostitute (and infant) with the squad's anything but moral bartering for the hooker in Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket. I know Kubrick was often accused of cynicism and misanthropy, but he could have hardly have been accused of skimping out on research.
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Old 09-06-2011, 15:39   #31
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Don't forget Casaulties of War too. Think the misogynistic racism of the American forces during 'Nam are well documented (unlike Cimino's Russian Roulette nonsense).

Quote:
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Theres a cool part where the Duke impales a cong on a branch so ya
Sounds like the Inglourious Basterds of Vietnam.
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Old 09-06-2011, 16:01   #32
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And with The Deer Hunter, there's also that strange validation of superstition and the absolute sanctity of ritual, as shown by a telling close up of wine spilling onto Steven's clothes (signifying bad luck) during the wedding toast.

I haven't seen CoW in an age. I just have vague memories of Sean Penn hamming it up?
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Old 09-06-2011, 16:14   #33
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He's an absolute **** in that film.
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Old 09-06-2011, 16:16   #34
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It's not bad from what I remember (like you, it was ages ago). I mainly remember Penn making me want to throw bricks at the screen with Fox playing against him with his ever-likable self (pretty safe casting). Apart from the aforementioned and one powerful/upsetting scene involving a young Vietnamese woman, it's pretty unmemorable. I can't even remember who else is in it....
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Old 23-02-2012, 09:35   #35
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What are peoples thoughts on the new release of The Deer Hunter by Universal?

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/DVDCom...deerhunter.htm

Even thought it has a "very large files size about 70% higher bitrate" compared to the Kinowelt - Studio Canal Collection Blu-Ray, but I think it looks like the image has had some DNR and some of the detail is missing.

DVD Beaver say that Universal has the better picture, but I think I'd sway towards Kinowelt - Studio Canal Collection.

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Old 23-02-2012, 09:44   #36
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The Universal one has a yellow tint on some of those grabs.
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Old 23-02-2012, 14:31   #37
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DVDBeaver's caps aren't a reliable source these days - they give a rough idea of what the PQ will be but that is all. Most of the Criterion B&W movies look like **** on that site but when I play them on my deck they always look much better.
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Old 23-02-2012, 20:39   #38
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Yikes, the DNR is obvious on those caps. I remember's Universal's HD DVD encode looked remarkeably clean but not overly processed, wouldn't surprise if they've 'improved' the video quality for Blu-ray.

That said, the caps are from the Beaver, so all bets are off.
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Old 06-03-2012, 11:41   #39
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Old 13-10-2013, 18:37   #40
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Ive just bought the studio canal version with the extras. Watched it last night as i haven't seen it right the way through for years.

Noticed quite alot of smudging blurry bits at the top or bottom of the screen in some scenes. Whats caused by that ? Im not really up on things like that but noticed and it wasn't like that when i saw it on film 4 the last time im sure.
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