Re: What Difference Do A Few Lines Make, Anyway???

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Posted by Doc M on December 06, 1999 at 11:56:47:

In Reply to: Re: What Difference Do A Few Lines Make, Anyway??? posted by Bill R on December 06, 1999 at 10:27:29:

: Marcia,

: I agree with you entirely. It is sacrilege. It is heresy.
: And we all know what the punishment for heresy is, right? FIRE!
: Wood heaped around their ankles up to their knees, and Elaine striking a match! Tie them to the frame, and lift them over the fire Marcia! And no mercy shot to put them out of their misery!

: Bill R

: : NewsFlash! One of the greatest love stories of all time has just been released on DVD for your viewing pleasure! Yes, now you can see Casablanca in fabulous crystal-clear digital clarity and with phenominal Dolby-Make-Your-Ears-Bleed Surround Sound! Of course, you WILL notice a few changes in this expanded version: Bogie no longer wonders why, of all the gin joints in the world, Ingrid picks HIS to show up in, for one thing. Perhaps that line must have seemed a little dated to the editors of this version. And there IS the omitted reference to "always having Paris." The inspector no longer rounds up "the usual suspects," either, having had a lengthier speech inserted at that point, bemoaning the mountain of paperwork involved in investigating sordid crimes of this sort, and thus giving the viewer a clearer idea of the inspector's character. But perhaps the biggest shock for those familiar with the past incarnation of this beloved film is the substitution of today's "See ya when I see ya!" for Rick's oft-quoted, "Here's lookin' at YOU, kid!" All in all, though, this reviewer feels losing those non-essential lines is more than made up for by the enhanced sound and visual perfection of the dvd version.

: : Hmmmmmmmmmmmm...while the above is DEFINITELY done tongue-in-cheek, my own strictly personal opinion (and I'm already resigned to the fact that I'll probably be a LONE voice in the wilderness, here) is that there are some things you don't mess with...and classic lines in a classic film are one of those things. What would the reaction be if Scarlett O'Hara were to shake her fist in silence to the sky, and no longer cry, "As God is my witness, I'll NEVER go hungry again!" Or Rhett Butler were to turn and walk away leaving Scarlett's questions as to what will become of her unanswered? What? No "Frankly My Dear, I don't give a damn?" Sacrilege, surely? The Godfather no longer makes an offer that can't be refused, Brandon de Wilde no longer cries, "Shaaaaane! Come back, Shane!" Citizen Kane dies silently, no longer whispering "Rosebud." Boy, I don't want to see the DVD version of ANY of these, if that's what might happen.

: : Yes, they are only a few lines, here or there...but they are lines we all know and love, and quote over and over. While there are things to be enjoyed about this new LOTM release, it appears to me that most of the pluses described are the technical benefits of digital movies, rather than changes for the better in an already nearly perfect film. If this dvd version were on TAPE, and played in contrast to the original THX, I wonder if it would still be received so well.

: : Actually, I feel kinda sorry for those who may only see LOTM on the DVD version. They are sure gonna be confused if they ever participate in a Gathering, or visit some of the past Gathering pages already online. Surely they'll wonder what to make of my favorite photo of Jo & Emily doing their best "Clear it up any?" reenactment. My idea of an Official Gathering t-shirt stating "We Are a Breed Apart and Make No Sense" will obviously have to be scrapped. And many of the quotes shouted back and forth as we hike the trails will have to be explained, as well.

: : Yes, they are only one-liners, but they sure provided ME with a lot of pleasure over the last seven years or so. It makes me very sad to see them tossed aside, and all the visual clarity in the world will not change the fact that one of my favorite films has been altered in a way that I find incomprehensible.

: : Back to my THX, where all is right in my world once more!

: : MMMMarcia

OOOO! OOOO! Is that the tang of burning flesh wafting through
the crisp autumnal air? And how dare you start burning
heretics without telling me first???

You are not a lone voice, MMMM -- here's another old crank
who agrees with you. I'm glad the technology is there for
them as can afford it, but it's just not all that vital
for my ultimate enjoyment of LOTM ... or any other movie,
for that matter. And it would have been great to have a
version including a lot of unreleased footage, but that just
ain't gonna happen -- unless in the year 2075 some pointy-
headed alien commissar of the Planetary Film Institute
decides to do a restoration job. The THX is LOTM to me,
and that's that. Of course, my VCR is powered by burning
whale oil, so mayhap I'm not on the cutting edge here.
All I know is, last weekend I watched an old, scratchy
black-and-white copy of Double Indemnity and was as
happy as a possum in a cow plop!

Doc M

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