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I liked it quite a bit, but I can see where a lot of people are going to think it's a dated, confusing mess. Hard to escape the sense that those steeped in Hollywood history are the primary audience, especially when the accompanying feature-length documentary and the shorter behind-the-scenes one on the film's reconstruction are integral to the full appreciation of the film itself.

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I saw the doc first.  I liked it that way but I think it affected how I "read" the film.  I'd be more interested in your reaction to seeing the film first and then the doc.  Not so much how you "liked" it but rather what you think was going on if you haven't seen the doc. 

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I think I'll enjoy it, I'm not a Welles completest by any means, but have looked at as much of his work as possible. I really, really like "later" things like The Trial, which I take it was pretty much ignored in its time. Big mistake, imo.

I get how his reputation was that of a "wasted talent", and of that being somewhat of his own doing, but I also get how somebody of his intense natural/original vision might well rub "the system" the wrong way in damn near every way.

I am truly fascinated by how he worked on this one for, like, what, six years? I also am aware that "continuity" is not a concern, that it's more "stream of consciousness", and I wonder how much of that was true original intent, and/or how much of it was intent foisted onto him by circumstances.

I also wonder what an "Orson Welles film" would have been if he had played the game, made everybody happy, got funding the regular way, and had that career. The way I look at is is simple - there's plenty of people who did it that way, so take his work for what it/he is, somebody who most certainly did not do it that way. I'm a fan.

My plan is to wait until I have  a week off work in December before getting into any of it. Pretty sure it's going do be a dense experience on way or another, and very much want to have with a clear head and a quiet space.

 

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I saw the film first and then the docu. I definitely think seeing the docu first would color how one views the film - I was already aware of bits and pieces of the backstory but you can't "unsee" certain things that are pointed out in the docu once seen. Someone coming to the film cold will most likely be trying to piece together the context and meaning of the rapid-fire bits of information that come and go. Also, much of the film is "meta" stuff - someone who has no idea who Huston, Bogdanovich, or Welles himself is will see the film very differently than someone who is familiar with them, their relationships with each other, and their place in film history. Same goes for the numerous other actors and other well-known personalities that make appearances in the film, either as themselves or as thinly-disguised avatars for other real-life film industry players. 

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2 hours ago, JSngry said:

I think I'll enjoy it, I'm not a Welles completest by any means, but have looked at as much of his work as possible.

it's unfortunately not hard to be a Welles (as a director) completist.  I heard Bernard Hermann give a lecture at the National  Film Theater in London and someone from the audience asked him how he could have co-operated with RKO's reedit of The Magnificent Ambersons. Given Welles and Hermann's  subsequent history his answer was heartbreaking.  He said "We thought it was just a movie. We thought we were going to make lots of them." dit 

Edited by medjuck
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31 minutes ago, medjuck said:

it's unfortunately not hard to be a Welles (as a director) completist.  I heard Bernard Hermann give a lecture at the National  Film Theater in London and someone from the audience asked him how he could have co-operated with RKO's reedit of The Magnificent Ambersons. Given Welles and Hermann's  subsequent history his answer was heartbreaking.  He said "We thought it was just a movie. We thought we were going to make lots of them." dit 

Yes. Seeing the restored version was, to use a cliche, a revelation.

I think I've seen all of the "Hollywood" films, 2 of the 3 Shakespeare, and have tried to see all of the, uh..."more obscure" stuff, but things like F Is For Fake, Chimes At Midnight, some others, I have not had the opportunity to get to a screening, and don't want to get started buying DVDs like I have LPs & CDs.

But - the guy's work continues to interest me. Probably always will.

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Chimes at Midnight and F for Fake are streaming  for now on Filmstruck.  When it closes down they'll probably be on the new Criterion channel.   I think you mean "A Touch of Evil" when you write about the restored version. Unfortunately Ambersons has never been restored and I expect will never be. (Met a guy once who'd spent years looking for the materials and he says they don't exist.) 

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Hmmm...I could have sworn I saw a restored version of Ambersons at some point, 20 something years ago, but apparently not. Was there a basic re-release around that time? Maybe that's what I'm remembering.

Definitely saw the restored Touch Of Evil, but that wasn't exactly a revelation, I loved it from the first time seeing it (on a late show local tv thing no less!) back in the 70s.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm a little pissed at Netflix for only screening The Other Side of the Wind in the absolute bare minimum number of theaters (in order for it to be eligible for or Oscar nominations) -- in NYC and LA only.  I *really* prefer seeing films in theaters, whenever possible -- especially something like this (almost anything pre-1980).

So I'm conspiring to get it "shown" in the auditorium where I work (after hours), as a fun after-work thing just for other film buffs on-staff (and maybe a few spouses, if there's any interest).  NOT a public showing -- probably 10-15 of us, tops.  Sometime in January, probably, or early Feb.

QUESTIONS:  How long are the other two related documentaries??  Ideally it'd be nice to see the film, and both docs -- as a sort-of "triple bill" -- but how long would that all be??

I'm also curious about a suggested viewing order, especially if more than half the audience probably won't be the least bit steeped in Welles.  I'm thinking...

  1. Feature-length Doc. (Is this an hour, or more like 90 minutes??)
  2. The film itself (122 minutes, according to Wikipedia -- so 2 hours)
  3. The shorter(?) film-reconstruction doc (if anyone is crazy enough to stay for that too) - guessing 30 minutes??

How long does that all add up to?  (I'm not on Netflix myself, I'm afraid.)  Thanks!!

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This is something new for me:

In 2018 I volunteered to help program a student film society and one of the series I proposed, a Satyajit Ray series, was accepted.  It will happen for 10 weeks in the spring, a night after a 10-week Claude Chabrol series.  (I know, 10 weeks is merely an overview of both directors.)  No problem locating 35mm  or 16mm prints to show, but finding and contacting he/she who has the rights to these has been a bit of a problem

A bigger one is, for another series proposal, finding who has the rights to the Bert Stern film "Jazz on a Summer's Day" now that Stern has died and the distributor has vanished.  So far just some dodgy advice or "try so-and-so" who suggests trying someone else.

Some of you Organissimo folks have experience programming film groups or eaters.  Is there somewhere a grand catalogue of who currently own copyrights to films and who distributes them?  

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14 hours ago, Rooster_Ties said:

I'm a little pissed at Netflix for only screening The Other Side of the Wind in the absolute bare minimum number of theaters (in order for it to be eligible for or Oscar nominations) -- in NYC and LA only.  I *really* prefer seeing films in theaters, whenever possible -- especially something like this (almost anything pre-1980).

So I'm conspiring to get it "shown" in the auditorium where I work (after hours), as a fun after-work thing just for other film buffs on-staff (and maybe a few spouses, if there's any interest).  NOT a public showing -- probably 10-15 of us, tops.  Sometime in January, probably, or early Feb.

QUESTIONS:  How long are the other two related documentaries??  Ideally it'd be nice to see the film, and both docs -- as a sort-of "triple bill" -- but how long would that all be??

I'm also curious about a suggested viewing order, especially if more than half the audience probably won't be the least bit steeped in Welles.  I'm thinking...

  1. Feature-length Doc. (Is this an hour, or more like 90 minutes??)
  2. The film itself (122 minutes, according to Wikipedia -- so 2 hours)
  3. The shorter(?) film-reconstruction doc (if anyone is crazy enough to stay for that too) - guessing 30 minutes??

How long does that all add up to?  (I'm not on Netflix myself, I'm afraid.)  Thanks!!

They'll Love Me When I'm Dead is 98 minutes long.    Not sure of the length or title of the other doc.  I think the best way to see Wind is to see it before the docs so they don't influence you or the way you perceive the film.  It's hard not to keep thinking about the way the film was made while You're watching it if you see the docs first.  (Hard to give examples without spoilers.) 

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7 hours ago, T.D. said:

Damn...I didn't know a film had been made based on the great Eric Ambler novel A Coffin for Dimitrios (personal favorite). Will have to look for this.

It was on TCM several months ago and I taped it; finally got around to watch it.  If I see it coming up again, I will pm you. 

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32 minutes ago, Brad said:

It was on TCM several months ago and I taped it; finally got around to watch it.  If I see it coming up again, I will pm you. 

Thanks, but I don't have broadcast TV, just a set I use for DVDs (don't want to pay for cable or dish). Unfortunately, I couldn't find this on Netflix DVD or Youtube so it may not be possible to watch.

Edited by T.D.
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27 minutes ago, T.D. said:

Thanks, but I don't have broadcast TV, just a set I use for DVDs (don't want to pay for cable or dish). Unfortunately, I couldn't find this on Netflix DVD or Youtube so it may not be possible to watch.

ITunes and Amazon Video have it for $10. I find TCM to be worth the price for what I pay for DIrect TV. 

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