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Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!

mousethief 15 Mar 01 - 03:03 PM
catspaw49 15 Mar 01 - 02:53 PM
Kim C 15 Mar 01 - 02:44 PM
Whistle Stop 15 Mar 01 - 02:26 PM
GUEST,Les B. 15 Mar 01 - 01:59 PM
Jim Dixon 15 Mar 01 - 01:40 PM
Bardford 15 Mar 01 - 01:40 PM
Bardford 15 Mar 01 - 01:35 PM
Wolfgang 15 Mar 01 - 01:13 PM
catspaw49 15 Mar 01 - 01:06 PM
mousethief 15 Mar 01 - 01:00 PM
Mr Red 15 Mar 01 - 12:59 PM
mousethief 15 Mar 01 - 12:54 PM
Kim C 15 Mar 01 - 12:48 PM
Don Firth 15 Mar 01 - 12:39 PM
Naemanson 15 Mar 01 - 12:28 PM
Bert 15 Mar 01 - 12:18 PM
catspaw49 15 Mar 01 - 12:14 PM
mousethief 15 Mar 01 - 12:13 PM
Rick Fielding 15 Mar 01 - 12:08 PM
Jenny the T 15 Mar 01 - 12:00 PM
Bert 15 Mar 01 - 11:42 AM
Kim C 15 Mar 01 - 11:35 AM
Wesley S 15 Mar 01 - 11:01 AM
Hollowfox 15 Mar 01 - 10:35 AM
Whistle Stop 15 Mar 01 - 08:46 AM
Peter T. 15 Mar 01 - 08:37 AM
bassen 15 Mar 01 - 05:54 AM
Gervase 15 Mar 01 - 04:50 AM
Naemanson 15 Mar 01 - 03:39 AM
Seamus Kennedy 15 Mar 01 - 02:37 AM
Rick Fielding 15 Mar 01 - 02:00 AM
Mark Cohen 15 Mar 01 - 01:57 AM
Thomas the Rhymer 14 Mar 01 - 10:45 PM
Jim Dixon 14 Mar 01 - 08:19 PM
Irish sergeant 14 Mar 01 - 08:00 PM
Bugsy 14 Mar 01 - 07:58 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 14 Mar 01 - 07:43 PM
Don Firth 14 Mar 01 - 07:38 PM
GUEST 14 Mar 01 - 07:12 PM
Bert 14 Mar 01 - 05:58 PM
Jim Dixon 14 Mar 01 - 05:51 PM
GUEST,Bruce O. 14 Mar 01 - 05:21 PM
mousethief 14 Mar 01 - 05:01 PM
mousethief 14 Mar 01 - 04:58 PM
mousethief 14 Mar 01 - 04:55 PM
Ebbie 14 Mar 01 - 04:51 PM
GUEST,Bruce O. 14 Mar 01 - 04:37 PM
Hollowfox 14 Mar 01 - 04:34 PM
Hollowfox 14 Mar 01 - 04:27 PM
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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: mousethief
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 03:03 PM

This thread, although fascinating, is overlong. Here's a new one on the same subject:

blicky


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: catspaw49
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 02:53 PM

Regardless of the book, "The Green Mile" is worth seeing and interestingly, they discussed the non-authentic things like the uniforms. Good flick no matter what and I am not a big King fan as far as movies go.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Kim C
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 02:44 PM

We rented the Bela Lugosi "Dracula" about a month ago figuring we'd be scared. Mister and I both loved Dracula as a novel (although I think he read the Classix Illustrated but I'm not sure!).

It was the funniest damn thing I've ever seen that wasn't supposed to be funny. And of course, it was set in the time period in which the movie was made, instead of the period in which the novel took place.

Everytime Bela did his Hyp-Mo-Tize stare, we cracked up.

That's another thing that bugs me. Movies based on books that don't follow the books. I love Stephen King novels but the movies always suck. (I heard The Green Mile was really good, though.)


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Whistle Stop
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 02:26 PM

The other thing that gets me -- and this is not really anyone's fault -- is movies about recent historical figures. Whether it's Anthony Hopkins playing Nixon, or Jack Nicholson playing Jimmy Hoffa, or whatsisname Carradine playing Woody Guthrie, I can't get past the fact that I know what this guy looks/talks/acts like, and that isn't him up there on the screen. In a couple of cases the portrayal was so convincing that I didn't mind (Gary Busey playing Buddy Holly, or Denzel Washington playing Malcolm X). But most of the time I could do without these. It's particularly bad in the made-for-TV movies about people like Elvis, the Beatles, Judy Garland, etc. -- which tend to be pretty awful anyway.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: GUEST,Les B.
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:59 PM

Rick et al: In regard to Citizen Kane - it always seems to appear on Top Ten lists, and you're right, in comparison to more recent films it seems a bit slow and stodgy.

But, in it's day it was a breakthrough piece. Use of sets with ceilings because of the low angle shots, deep focus lens designed by cinematographer Gregg Toland, innovative sound work, and the courage of Welles to take on a major media figure - William Randolph Hearst. Hearst was so pissed at the not-so-veiled reference to him and his paramour, Marion Davies, he tried to buy and destroy the negative, and his nationwide newspaper empire successfully prevented the film from achieving any sort of commercial success.

As far as the aging of Welles in the Kane role - yeah, it wasn't great, but Welles was only 26 years old then. So taking him up to a 60-year old was a challenge. (Even with the available excesses of Tinsel Town - booze, women, drugs and power !!!)

The comment on the Rosebud scene, which begins and ends the film, reminded me of the supposed femminist philosophy question: "If a man says something in the middle of a forest, with no one else around, is he still wrong ?!?" :)

There is some interesting scuttlebutt about the Rosebud scene. It is apparently one of the scenes that really incensed Hearst. The writer who co-wrote the film with Welles knew Hearst and his lover, Davies, very well and used some of his knowledge to embarrass them. Supposedly the word "Rosebud" was Hearst's pet word for a very private part of Davies' anatomy. When Welles trotted this out in the first scene of the film it sent old man Hearst's blood pressure through the ceiling !


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:40 PM

Maybe I am the only person in the world who notices and is annoyed when actors wear glasses that don't have real lenses in them.

This happens because most actors wear contact lenses, if they need corrective lenses at all. Then, if they need glasses for dramatic reasons, instead of going to an optician and having real lenses made, someone in the prop or costume department whips up a fake pair. Those guys don't know how to make glasses look real, but they think no one will notice.

It's rare to see eyeglasses in movies. It generally happens only when the actor portrays (1) a pathetic nerd - like Eddie Murphy in "The Nutty Professor," or (2) a beautiful but cold and unapproachable woman who will, at some point in the story, take off her glasses, let her hair down, and get romantically involved with the hero - like Helen Slater in "The Secret of My Success," or (3) a real historic character who wore glasses - like Kevin Costner as Jim Garrison in "JFK." These stereotypes irk me too, but that's a whole 'nother issue.

Real lenses can be recognized by their shape, and their shape can be inferred from the shape and motion of the reflections you see in them. Real lenses almost always have a convex outer surface. Rarely, the outer surface is perfectly flat, or nearly so, but this happens only with very nearsighted people whose lenses are very thick around the edges and thin in the center. Those lenses can be recognized easily by the obvious distortion of anything you see through the lenses, like the outline of the wearer's cheek.

Flat lenses in movie glasses are always a giveaway that the prop man used a flat piece of Plexiglas or something similar (hopefully not window glass, for safety's sake!) to make fake lenses.

Sometimes you see no reflections at all in the glasses, which betrays that the frames are empty. This is common in TV shows and old movies, but not in recent movies. I think this is because sets of many TV shows, especially sitcoms taped before live audiences, are very brightly lit, and the designers aren't trying to achieve realism as far as lighting is concerned. They are probably more concerned that there will be too many reflections. This is understandable, and forgivable in that context.

By far the worst glasses I ever remember seeing were those worn by Kevin Costner in "JFK." His lenses were made from a thin, flexible sheet of plastic, and in forcing them into the frames, someone had left them badly warped. Whenever Costner moved his head, the reflections in his glasses wobbled and twisted like the images in a funhouse mirror. The effect was made worse by the ultra-realistic lighting. Some indoor scenes were very dimly lit, and the light from a nearby window, or from a TV, was so contrastingly bright that reflections were very prominent.

The solution is simple: have real lenses made by an optician. If an actor needs no visual correction, they can supply "blanks." This is commonly done for people who need correction for one eye but have perfect vision (or are blind) in the other. (You don't see many monocles out there, do you?) If an actor with perfect vision needs thick glasses for dramatic reasons, an optician could even supply contact lenses and glasses that cancel each other out!

And by the way, I am NOT an optician.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Bardford
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:40 PM

Yikes. Authenticity Update: "Fenimore Cooper's Literary Offences" was first published in the North American Review (July 1895).
Cheers,Bardford


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Bardford
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:35 PM

I guess Samuel Clemens was an Authenicity Ne(u)rd too.Mark Twain took exception to Fenimore Cooper's linguistic liberties in a biting and wonderful essay which was published posthumously in "Letters From the Earth." I found a website with the full text:

Click here

Authentically yours, Bardford
Also, while I'm here - bodhrans on the Titanic? Come on. Then again, if they put one there, why couldn't they put them all there?


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Wolfgang
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:13 PM

I'm more bothered by impossibilities in books than in films. I cringe when a writer writes about walking in the light of the new moon at midnight. I get mad at a children's book illustrator when my daughter asks me why a railway car was lost just because the illustrator didn't care about how many cars she was drawing. I'd love to see a single children's book which gets the curvature of the moon correct when moon and sun are displayed in the same drawing.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: catspaw49
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:06 PM

hey Brett....Yeah, you're thinking of the right series. And speaking of blood and guts, that series also delt pretty accurately with that. There were a lot of severe burns and deaths of Spit and Hurri pilots because of the placement of the fuel tanks made cockpit fires all too common. Plastic surgery made great advances during that time out of necessity and a large number of candidates. But they also showed many of the other ways things happened. The original squadron commander slipped off the wing of his plane and died of a skull fracture.

AND......Is there anyone who doesn't like "Princess Bride?"

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: mousethief
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:00 PM

And the pundits that scratch their arses about it have a long and illustrious pedigree too, only some of them know how to spell "pedigree".


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Mr Red
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:59 PM

Longfellow poem has sunlight streaming through a glass window, coloured. In the court of King Authur? In a castle? Thatched wooden walls in the middle of a marsh more like.

At least these lack of authenticity things have a long and illustrious pedegree.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: mousethief
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:54 PM

If I'm looking for authentic, I don't watch movies. I read books. Movies are for escape. Just me, I'm sure.

I think the continuity inconsistencies in, say, Raiders of the Lost Ark are a hoot. Like when they're in the high school gym and there's that gigantic book on the table with the metal straps. The camera looks at the book, then you see the windows and Jones' face, then it looks back at the book, adn the straps are fastened differently. It's fun to find stuff like that. But does it ruin the movie? Not in the least! It adds another LEVEL of pleasure -- looking for the glitches.

But what do I know?


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Kim C
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:48 PM

Aw, Bert, you got me. Reckon my daddy was a glassmaker after all. :-)

Princess Bride is a really good movie - and being a fantasy, as far as I'm concerned, it can be as unauthentc as it likes.

Okay, here's another one.... Burt Lancaster in Valdez Is Coming. "You tell them..... Valdess.... ees comink."


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Don Firth
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:39 PM

"My name Inigo Montoya! You keel my father! Now, prepare to die! . . . (Ga-a-a-a-ck!)

Right, Seamus! And there was a movie (late 40s or early 50s) called "Monsieur Beaucaire" about a barber (not a fencer) who, for some forgotten reason, had to impersonate an aristocrat who was reputed to be "the best swordsman in France." Toward the end of the movie (and the whole purpose of the movie) was when the barber gets forced into a duel with another famous swordsman (who also happens to be the villain). The barber was played by Bob Hope. The resulting melee contained just about every conceivable duel scene cliché. Up and down miles of stairways, chandeliers everywhere to swing on, acres of carpets to slip on, and several forests of candles to hack at. At the end, the real Monsieur Beaucaire bounds through a window and saves the barber (Hope), who was actually doing quite well up until that point by keeping his opponent totally bewildered by his "unconventional technique." Great slapstick!

And Peter T., I'm with you. In "Ivanhoe," Elizabeth Taylor as Rebecca was breathtakingly beautiful, and Rebecca was a woman of action who knew what needed to be done and did it. Joan Fontaine as Rowena wasn't a bad looker by any means, but Rowena, as I recall, was pretty wimpy by comparison. The movie followed a condensed version of the novel fairly well, the acting was good, and the combat scenes were remarkably authentic. But what strained my "willing suspension of disbelief" was that -- faith notwithstanding -- Ivanhoe preferred Rowena to Rebecca. (sigh)

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Naemanson
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:28 PM

Spaw, was that series the one where the pilot made a point of always wearing his parachute but when he jumped the chute was on fire? I loved that series.

It was, as you said, unreasonable about what that squadron did. I think the host said something about the series being and example of what the squadonS dealt with during the Battle Of Britain.

"Not enough blood..." is a problem with any movie that supposedly depicts a battle scene. Braveheart tried but was, in my opinion, still too tame.

Did anyone see The 13th Warrior? I had some serious armor issues with that film but I still enjoyed the story. And the vessel they used to get where they we going was properly a knarr rather than a longship.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Bert
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:18 PM

And I love the "Carry On" films - I'm certain that every one of them is 100% nauthentic.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: catspaw49
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:14 PM

When we were discussing historical accuracy in films on another thread, I brought up a series that I thought had done a good job putting together a composite "picture" of an event. The series was the 6 part "Piece of Cake" on the Battle of Britain. For all its faults, which were inevitable (one squadron could not possibly have had all those situations), as a composite piece of history, it was very well done. They also achieved high marks in the use of real aircraft and limited stock footage.

Although the Hurricane bore most of the load, at that time and since, the Spitfire with its somewhat roamntic image and inherent beauty, got much of the credit and the series followed a Spit squadron over a one year period prior to the most of the action in August/September. They didn't have a lot of Spitfires but they made good use of them and the costuming and "lingo" were very accurate....easier I'm sure since it was recent history. Attitudes, the changing tactics, relationships with the French and Americans, politics etc, were all pretty well done. There were a number of other planes used from restoration societies and they too made the "authenticity meter" go up considerably.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: mousethief
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:13 PM

I love the Princess Bride and I don't care if it's not authentic.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:08 PM

OK, one final bit of heresy (other than to agree with Peter T. about Elizabeth T. in Ivanhoe...OY VAY!)...I know that everyone one on the planet thinks that "Citizen Kane" is the greatest movie ever made..yada yadda...

I've seen it three or four times and I think it's simply awful. I've tried so hard to appreciate anything in it beyond the German-inspired camera work, and I simply don't get it. Other than Welles' reasonably restrained performance, I think the acting is terrible...with every emotion and nuance exagerated to the point of being a charicature, and if I've seen worse "ageing" make-up, it must have been in a "Carry On" film. Talk about "not authentic". If Kane's opera singin' gal pal was a bad as portrayed, no newspaper chain in the world could have kept her career going for a week. Like everything else in the film (in my opinion) her character seemed impossible to believe.

So glad to hear that Ivanhoe was reasonably authentic. I LOVED that flick!

Rick


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Jenny the T
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 12:00 PM

I completely agree about Sam Elliott *sigh*

--both the "like him an awful lot" sentiment and the "but not as much as if he were naked" sentiment.

Jenny


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Bert
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 11:42 AM

Kim is thinking but not saying "But if it had been Sam Elliott"


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Kim C
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 11:35 AM

Oooh, Gettysburg! My favorite part was seeing Ted Turner get shot.

I had reservations about Martin Sheen but I think he did pretty well. Having read about Lee I don't have too many doubts that he was sort of fuddy-duddyish, to a degree. In his day he was an old man and he suffered from heart problems. Not only that but by the time Gettysburg rolled around, he was really tired of the war, and still getting over the loss of his right-hand man, Stonewall Jackson. (talk about a fuddy-duddy!)

Sam Elliott's part wasn't big enough. Sam Elliott's part in ANY movie is never big enough to suit me. I love Sam. I don't know if this is true or not but I heard he refused the official costume maker's costume and had his own made because he didn't like the quality.

The thing I hated worst abou Gettysburg, though, was the AWFUL FAKE BEARD on Tom Berenger. Have you EVER seen such an obviously FAKE piece of facial hair? And in this day and age? There was no excuse for that. And his awful hat too.

About Marching Through Georgia... our local Mattress Warehouse used this tune as a backdrop for their President's Day Sale commercial. Heehee! In my opinion, this is one of the most brilliant tunes ever written. It's jolly and the melody moves very well, which is why I think people like it. Hardly anyone hears the words anymore so I guess people just don't know the history of the song. But it's one I really enjoy playing, when I can get away with it!

Oh Thanks A Lot to whoever it was that reminded me about Harvey Keitel being Totally Naked in The Piano. I was trying to forget about that. If I want to see a naked man in the movies, lemme tellya, IT AIN'T HIM. ;)


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Wesley S
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 11:01 AM

My wife pointed out to me as we were watching "Saving Private Ryan" that it was the first D-day movie she had seen that had dead fish lying on the beach from all the bullets that were flying around. I'd never thought about it before but it sure made it a little more realistic for me.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Hollowfox
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 10:35 AM

NBC just broadcast a miniseries called the Lost Empire this past week, based (somewhat) on the Chinese classic Journey To The West. For all its shortcomings (let's not even start), it was a joy to see the costumes (especially the headgear) in the Celestial Court (Jade Emperor, Goddess of Mercy) worn with ease, not as though the actors had never worn them before that morning.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Whistle Stop
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 08:46 AM

Well, I still think that "not enough blood" is the most glaring error in "Gettysburg". Think about it -- so many thousands killed and wounded, by bullet, canister, and bayonet, in one of the most horrible battles ever fought on American soil, and yet you hardly see any blood (to say nothing of severed limbs, bashed in heads, and all the other pleasantries of war). In my opinion this is a much more significant error than a tan line from someone's wrist watch.

Gettysburg error number two on my list (no, I'm not a Civil War expert, just have a mild interest) would be casting Martin Sheen as Robert E. Lee -- one of the greatest military leaders our country has ever produced, yet Sheen plays him as a wooly-headed and uncharismatic fuddy-duddy. Really atrocious. Error number three, again, is that everyone was so clean and well-dressed; armies that had been in the field for as long as these had, and through so much hardship, just didn't look that good.

I can miss a tan line or an inaccurate placement of a regimental flag, but these large-scale errors just destroy the realism for me.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Peter T.
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 08:37 AM

Natalie Davis, the medieval historian who wrote The Return of Martin Guerre tells the story of being the technical advisor on the film, and they did everything they could to make it authentic. At one point the Director turned to her and said, how authentic does the village look? She replied that in the 16th century everyone was about 5 foot tall, most people had pockmarks, and there were crippled people everywhere. Everyone was just too healthy.

Speaking of "Ivanhoe", I have never for a moment been convinced that Elizabeth Taylor was a medieval Jewess -- married to Lord Edward Fisher perhaps? -- but she was unbelievably beautiful in that film, at her absolute peak (until WAOVirginia Woolf, when she had a different sort of beauty). It is hard to imagine people in that film not falling down whenever she walked into a room, and converting instantly. Hebrew God did that? Where do I sign up?
yours, Peter T.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: bassen
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 05:54 AM

I emerge from lurkers' twilight to engage in my own pet authenticity rant

Barrels are not held together with rope!
Barrels are not held together with rope!
Barrels are not held together with rope!

Any Mudcatter who is interested is hereby granted a free course in splitting and shaving withy hoops (or hazel, or birch, or hawthorn, or whatever) for barrels. The course will be held in Kristiansund, Norway when at least ten 'catters have applied...bring your own drawknife.

bassen


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Gervase
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 04:50 AM

What's sad is when the crew makes a huge effort, but the editing and post-production team snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
Way back I did some work as an extra on a lamentable BBC costume drama, By the Sword Divided, starring Tim Bentinck (better known to most of as as David Archer).
We were brought in because we knew how to do musketry drill - firing by introduction and extraction etc - and gunnery drill, which they needed for the battle scenes. (which was nice because, as specialist extras, we got far more than the usual Equity rate for odd-jobbers and crowd fillers).
The wardrobe, props and make-up people went to extraordinary lengths for authenticity (I've never seen so much fake grime aerosolled over people before, or been given so much black powder to play with).
The make-up people were particularly keen. For one of the battle scenes a bunch of us had to be mercilessly mown down in a point-blank fusillade from the gateway of Rockingham castle, and thus we were given the most wonderful wounds - almost as convincing as in Saving Private Ryan, inspired by the most gory post-mortem and scenes of crime photographs pinned up beside the mirrors in the make-up trucks. But, being the BBC, everything was done by the book.
Thus, at noon precisely, we stopped in mid make-up to queue for lunch (the catering was phenomenal - vast quantities provided in an operation that would shame the Army). I remember standing behind a friend whose brain was tumbling down the back of his neck (or at least a very convincing sponge, latex and goo version of it), while others had various bits falling off or in states of disarray.
And, during all external scenes, a crew of about 15 - linked by radios and working with the Notts police - would stop all traffic on two tiny roads about a mile away which could be seen from the castle. Must have made the locals far from gruntled, but the crew wanted authenticity.
We all did our best - and the finished programme, when broadcast on Sunday nights on BBC1, was complete pants. There were the most awful howlers in the studio-shot interior scenes, and the exterior battle scenes shot and cut dreadfully. And I never even got to see the full gamut of wounds, eviscerations and amputations...


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Naemanson
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 03:39 AM

Rick, if you want to talk about beautiful creatures in magazines and authenticity you will be opening up another whole line for discussion. Some of those women have attained a level of beauty (?) so far above the rest of humanity that you can't even think of them as being sexy no matter how little they wear. Real people don't look like that.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 02:37 AM

Hey, Don Firth, for fencing, how about Basil Rathbone and Danny Kaye in the Court Jester? Or Cary Elwes and Mandy Patinkin in the Princess Bride? Totally unrealistic, but thoroughly enjoyable.

All the best

Seamus


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 02:00 AM

MY GOD!! I am far from alone, when it comes to being an authenticity nerd/nurd. But "Human catfood taster"? I am discombobulated, ferranablasted, and downright Gobsmacked. That joke goes in my repertoire immediately.

....another thing... how about magazines who feature beautiful creatures on the front cover...and you KNOW they've all had face lifts because they look twenty years younger than they did twenty years ago!!! That doesn't neccessarily fit "the authenticity" bit, but I'm glad I got it off my chest!

Rick


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 15 Mar 01 - 01:57 AM

Just found this thread, and it's wonderful! My favorite story along this line has to do with complementary expertise: In 1976 as a third year medical student I had a summer job teaching CPR to Philadelphia firemen, and also riding with the rescue squads. (Now THAT is an experience every doctor should have...but I digress.) The guys in one station loved to watch this show called Rescue 911 -- it was their favorite show after The 3 Stooges. So we'd all be watching this show, which combined paramedics and firefighting. At some point I would say something like, "Hey, you can't give those drugs in an IV!" and soon afterwards one of the firemen would say, "Hey, you'd never take a two-and-a-half-inch hose into a building like that, gotta be at least a 3-1/2!"

Aloha,
Mark


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Thomas the Rhymer
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 10:45 PM

I ususually watch the tele with the sound off. The most remarkable thing happens when this is done. The actors become glaringly obvious... the expressions just don't match the intended meanings often enough. They become overpaid people pretending to enjoy their work...

For years my pet peeve was car chases on dirt roads... complete with the sound of squealing tires! But as time passes, and I hear that squealing sound again and again on those dirt roads,... I am beginning to wonder if maybe I was misinformed all along... 2+2=5
ttr


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 08:19 PM

When you see a boom mike in a movie, it's usually the projectionist's fault. Film is manufactured to a certain standard size and aspect ratio (ratio of width to height of image), but directors often want to use a different aspect ratio for artistic reasons. To achieve this, the projectionist is instructed to mask the top and bottom of the image. Assuming the projectionist will do his job correctly, the film editors don't need to worry about images that appear in the part of the film that is supposed to be hidden by the mask.

Click here for an illustration.

Click here for more information.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Irish sergeant
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 08:00 PM

Movies, you gotta love 'em. I watch for these things particularly in Aviation flicks and T.V. I always got a hoot out of watching Corsairs etc. taking off to fight the Japanese from Angle decks. Carriers didn't have angled decks until 1947 and later. Most of the zeros and kates you see in the movies are AT-6 Texans. Pick your John Wayne flick: Great escapist fare but officers didn't wear the inch and a half trouser stripe. I do however want one of those neat non-reloadable six shooters he had/ Kindest reguards, NEil


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Bugsy
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 07:58 PM

Justa Picker "When they say "new" and "improved" taste in cat food....how do we really know?"

Well, they know because they have human "Tasters".

My father was a human taster for cat food for many years. Unfortunately he is no longer with us. He was sitting on the matle licking his balls, when he fell off and broke his neck!

CHeers

Bugsy


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 07:43 PM

Keep an eye out for Robin Hood movies in which Alan-a-Dale (or whoever) plays a 6- or 8-course lute. Such scenes depict low-probability events since (a) the short lute seems generally to have had 5 strings through most of the 1400s; according to Grove's Dictionary, 7 courses weren't common until late in the 16th century; and (b) 12-14th century minstrels seem to have preferred the fiddle to other instruments.

T.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Don Firth
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 07:38 PM

Out-takes! I love 'em!

In the filming of all of the incarnations of Star Trek, the same thing keeps happening. The doors. Gene Roddenberry was unhappy with all the actual automatic door openers they tried because they didn't operate fast enough, so he had stage hands behind the doors operating them manually. They hear the cue, then yank open the door, fast! There are miles of footage, some of which I've seen on Star Trek anniversary specials and that sort of thing, of Kirk, Picard, Riker, Mulgrew, and at least half of the rest of the various cast members uttering an exit line, then turning around and crashing into the door. Stage hands missed their cue.

It's gotta hurt, but at the same time I can't help but rolling on the floor, howling. Light-years funnier than a pie in the face.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 07:12 PM

http://www.moviecliches.com/ Worth exploring.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Bert
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 05:58 PM

I saw a documentary on boat building once and the caulker was actually holding the caulking tool correctly. They get it wrong with caulking tools and cold chisels so often that it was worthy of comment.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 05:51 PM

I love this thread. I, too, am an authenticity nerd. (By the way, I consider "nerd" to be the authentic spelling, and I cite "Revenge of the Nerds" as my authoritative source. According to IMDb, there have been 17 movies with "nerd" or "nerds" in the title, but none with "nurd" or "nurds.")

Many years ago, as a college student, I went to see "Lord Jim" with a friend who had grown up in Thailand and India. (His parents were missionaries.) He pointed out several glaring (to him) errors. The plot involves a ship taking a load of Muslim pilgrims from (I think) India to Mecca. He said, "Those [extras] aren't Muslims. They're Sikhs." He could tell by the way they were dressed. In another scene he said, "That's a Cambodian village," where the locale was supposed to be some other country. He recognized the way the houses were built and arranged. It was an enlightening experience.

Anyone who loves movie goofs should love IMDb. You can bring up any movie and then click "goofs." For example, here's their list of goofs for Gettysburg. IMDb does a good job of separating matters of verifiable fact from matters of opinion or artistic judgment. They don't list "not enough blood" as a goof.

Even TV nature documentaries have never been the same since I learned that the sound tracks are usually created by Foley artists. Of course! When the pictures of mating toucans (or whatever) are taken from 100 yards away with telephoto lenses, how else would you ever hear the delicate sound of ruffling feathers?

And on those exploration documentaries, does it ever strike you as odd that when the spelunkers enter the cave for the first time (or the divers enter the sunken wreck, or the mountain climbers arrive at the peak) there is somehow always a camera set up there to capture the moment?

A friend of mine who works in construction hopes PBS will do a special program of "This Old House" outtakes, during pledge week. But I don't think they'll ever do it because it would destroy the illusion that the show is unrehearsed. They do a good job of creating the impression that they're just casually wandering around a construction site and asking spontaneous questions, but how come you never see them make a mistake, even a trivial one? I'd like to see Steve Thomas walk up to somebody and ask, "Say, I understand you're using a new kind of grout on this project, right?" and get the answer, "Who, me? Nah, I'm not the grout guy. I'm just takin' a cigarette break here. The grout guy is over there, takin' a shit."


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: GUEST,Bruce O.
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 05:21 PM

mousethief, wrong thread is nothing. I once posted a long blurb to the wrong newsgroup.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: mousethief
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 05:01 PM

Oops. Wrong thread. Proving that even the righteously indignant can make total asses of themselves occasionally.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: mousethief
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 04:58 PM

Well if you don't want to know why MAV is about as welcome here as a hot dog vendor at a vegeterian's convention, I guess that's okay, as long as you don't denigrate those who have had to put up with his putrescence and are angry that they can't get the smell off their hands. That's all.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: mousethief
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 04:55 PM

Hmmm. Not sure if I buy the statuette weighing more than the boulder. That boulder was what -- 7' high? perfectly spherical? And the statuette was what? about 6" high? Maybe a foot at the most?

Don't buy it. Gold is heavy but not THAT heavy. Unless the boulder was made of styrofoam. Boulders so rarely are.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Ebbie
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 04:51 PM

Remember in Raiders of the Lost Ark where the hero runs for his life, gold statuette held high, while a huge, rolling boulder gains on him- and it's going to mash him flat? In reality, the statuette would have weighed more than the boulder- he wouldn't have been running with it...

Ebbie


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: GUEST,Bruce O.
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 04:37 PM

Sinsull, correct. I forgot about two sides. That was GGGfather's favorite song (long after the march). I'm from a later mixture of both on my mother's side, the men being all Union and some women southerners.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Hollowfox
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 04:34 PM

Oh, yes, it did warm my heart to notice in "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" that the horses ridden by the bandits were NOT quarter horses, thoroughbreds, standardbreds, or Arabians.


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Subject: RE: Confessions of an Authenticity Nurd!
From: Hollowfox
Date: 14 Mar 01 - 04:27 PM

Having had it pointed out to me in childhood that it was really hard to fight indians for two hours or so without having so much as your wig out of place (must have been watchinh Last of the Mohicans), I've usually taken a bemused, if superior, attitude to this sort of thing. It's fun noticing them and pointing them out to friends (choose wisely who you go to the movies with). Rick, Jeri, I doubt that those Scottish parts were entirely accurate. Unless there was a mad moyle who performed a mass bris in the vicinity a few years before the battle. I'll have to check the video out of the library to be sure.
Ah, Excalibur, the movie that had a metal plate in Merlin's head, and it showed. I could understand a lot of the plot choices, after all, they had to condense centuries of sometimes conflicting story lines into a two hour movie. And I have a certain affection fro the armor that looks like it was made out of chrome automobile bumpers. But who can forget the Lust Scene where Lancelot was in full armor? Ouch, that pinches just to think of it!


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