Sunday, April 22, 2007

Milos Forman Fest!

I didn't really plan it this way, but on my latest DVD purchasing spree I bought two films by the same director. Both One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest and The People vs. Larry Flynt had been on my "to buy" list for a while, and their numbers just kind of came up at the same time I guess. Milos (pronounced "mee-low-sh") Forman is one of those "dependable but stylistically amorphous" directors along the lines of Sidney Lumet and Roman Polanski: ie., he made a lot of great movies but he isn't really an "auteur." He actually started out as an acclaimed Czechoslovakian director in the 60s (The Fireman's Ball is supposed to be really good), but fled Czeckoslovakia because...well...because it sucked, I imagine. He is also the director of Amadeus and Man on the Moon (otherwise known as The People vs. Larry Flynt Part II).

Czech out these features:

One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

Commentary by: director Milos Forman and producers Michael Douglas and Saul Zaentz
New 2001 digital transfer from restored elements
Soundtrack remastered
"The Making of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," a 48-minute documentary featuring the actors, the moviemakers, and writer Ken Kesey recounting the history of the original novel to its stage and movie adaptations
8 additional scenes

The People vs. Larry Flynt

Commentary by: actors Woody Harrelson, Edward Norton & Courtney Love, writers Scott Alexander & Larry Karaszewski
Deleted scenes with optional filmmaker commentary
Two featurettes: Free Speech or Porn?, Larry Flynt Exposed
Photo gallery
New York Times film review


Herr Zrbo said...

Really liked OFOTCN (the novel), really didn't like the film at all. Never saw Larry Flint, though I'd like to.

yoggoth said...

I really liked the novel, and liked the film. A huge stylistic piece of the novel is missing, however, because you don't see the foggy drugged out perspective that lead the narrator to be in the institute in the first place.

Larry Flint is good, but I couldn't help feeling that Larry Flint was still and asshole and that Woody Harrelson is probably an asshole as well. I'm surprised it made it into the Earl collection before some other movies.

Little Earl said...

Movies and books are two different things. Yes, the Cuckoo's Nest movie leaves out a lot of memorable aspects of the book, but the movie was made in a great era (70s) and if you compare it to most movies ever, it's pretty good. I haven't seen it in years so I am curious to watch it again, given my fresh perspective on cinema.

Yes, Larry Flynt is pretty much an asshole but the appeal of the movie isn't that he's not an asshole, but that he's completely ridiculous (I think Forman was aware of this). As far as "making it into the Earl collection before some other movies" goes, I have to admit that almost all of my "must-have" movies have already been bought, and now I'm basically filling out the collection. What else should I have bought instead? More movies Yoggoth hasn't seen? Also, these two movies had losts of special features but weren't $$$ like Criterion.

yoggoth said...

Yes, more I haven't seen! Both of those are good movies, I just didn't know they were in the running for a spot on the shelf of honor.

Little Earl said...

Here's what's on my list of films to buy:

Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid
All the President's Men
Do the Right Thing
It's a Wonderful Life
The Philadelphia Story
The Seventh Seal
Zorba the Greek
The Ipcress File
Lilies of the Field
Cries & Whispers
Yellow Submarine
The Birds
Kramer vs. Kramer
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
The Day the Earth Stood Still

Pinocchio, Ipcress File and Yellow Submarine are all out of print at the moment and cost about $50 each. Do the Right Thing, Seventh Seal, Pickpocket, Cries & Whispers and Traffic are all Criterions.

So tell me what you want. And tell me what I'm leaving out, if you're so concerned about it.

Herr Zrbo said...

I'm going to take the high-and-mighty horse and say I don't bother buying DVD's anymore. Anything I'm really interested in seeing I use netflix for, otherwise I use bittorrent and download it. It's just not worth my time buying a movie I'm going to watch maybe once a year. Movies on my to-buy list: 0

Little Earl said...

Thank you Mr. Enthusiasm.

Herr Zrbo said...

Mr. Enthusiasm, look who's talking!

Little Earl said...

What are you talkin' about? I'm sitting here sharing my enthusiasm about movies and EXCUSE ME if you don't like watching certain movies over and over again like I do. There's more to pay attention to in a movie than the plot, you know: there's plot + cinematography + acting + soundtrack + editing + etc. The best movies pay special attention to all of these elements, and there's no way to fully appreciate them all by watching them once. In that sense, my favorite movies are more like music, in that I can always find something new in them depending on where I want to focus my attention. I try to buy the movies that I feel will reward that kind of repeated viewing. Most Hollywood blockbusters ignore all the different layers they could play with and they basically just point the camera at the action and ask viewers to focus on the plot and nothing more.

I also like buying movies because it makes it easier to loan them out to people, and that's something I like to do.

So gimme a freakin' break buddy.

Herr Zrbo said...

Sorry, I was trying to be sarcastic. Usually you're the cynical one, that's why I threw the Mr. Enthusiasm comment back at you.

I know you're passionate about movies, and I think cinema can be a wonderful thing, I was trying to make the point that I don't find it necessary to purchase DVD's anymore when we seem to be moving to a more 'on-demand' kind of culture. I can find pretty much anything I want through either netflix, the internet, or comcast's on-demand service.

Even movies which I think "Oh I'll watch this a bunch of times" like the Star Wars DVD's - well even then I watch them about once a year. Maybe I'm railing against people who go down to Best Buy and buy a ton of questionable movies each week just cause they have "Special bonus features!" label on the cover. Your taste is much more refined, and I realize that.

Little Earl said...

Damn RIGHT it's more refined. Other DVD buyers are just poseurs; I'm actually trying to build a COLLECTION. In fact, my DVD collection, taken as a work of art in itself, is better than many actual movies.