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David Poland

By David Poland

BYO Civility

Feel free to use this space for whatever conversations come up.
But please… I have noticed a few people who seem to be spoiling for a fight and taking some otherwise valuable conversations someplace personal and petty.
Let’s please vent our anger into our opinions and not get into the measuring of body parts.
Your turn…

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26 Responses to “BYO Civility”

  1. IOIOIOI says:

    Who typed anything about a cock-off? Have you been listening to Bubba the Love Sponge, Heat?

  2. Noah says:

    Peter Berg is directing a new adaptation of Dune, apparently. I don’t know, Lynch’s version isn’t great but it’s certainly indelible. And didn’t they do a mini-series not that long ago? I’ll always be curious to check out what Berg does, but this property seems like it’s been done to death.

  3. IOIOIOI says:

    Noah; you’ve got to keep up on the haps, and Berg could make it very interesting. If he simply treats the material in a rather minimalist way. That would be interesting in a kinda sorta way. Oh yeah… big DVD day… anyone besides me going to be buying DVDs this week?

  4. jeffmcm says:

    Berg doesn’t have the visual imagination or the interest in this kind of thematic heft to make another version of Dune worthwhile. He needs to stick to simple, unpretentious stuff like Friday Night Lights or The Rundown, which were both just fine. I can’t imagine that his Dune will be anything more than another Chronicles of Riddick.

  5. York "Budd" Durden says:

    I was stunned to hear of yet another Dune adaptation. Even as a youthful fan of the book, I was fairly pleased with the Lynch version, which as Frank Herbert himself said, had good visual metaphors for various aspects.
    I couldn’t get into the TV movie version, though.

  6. I never got through Lynch’s Dune. I fell asleep after 20 minutes and woke up three hours later realising I needed to return it to Blockbuster. I was strangely non-plussed about it all. I adore Lynch’s desire to cast musicians as actors, but Sting was just not doing anything for me.

  7. Stella's Boy says:

    Apparently Anthony Minghella has died. Only 54 years old.

  8. OddDuck says:

    That’s terrible news about Minghella. He made some amazing films, and while some of his stuff fell flat for me (Breaking and Entering for example), I can’t think of a single major thing he did that was cure crap. Try that exercise with any of your favorite directors and actors – precious few pass that test.

  9. OddDuck says:

    cure = pure. sorry

  10. I was just gonna say that.
    I had just rewatched The Talented Mr Ripley a few days ago, too! I actually really liked Breaking and Entering, but I know many hated it. I was looking forward to his work on No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency. Sounded really great (especially with Jill Scott).
    Damn, and 54 too. Terrible.

  11. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Anthony Minghella was one of “Harvey’s Boys”, propped up by all the awards and nominations Harvey Weinstein bought over the years. I for one will not shed a tear.
    In a brighter spot of news Regal Cinemas will now permit red-band trailers to be shown before certain movies. This carries weight as Regal is the biggest US theater chain.

  12. Krazy Eyes says:

    Your such a charmer, Chucky.

  13. Stella's Boy says:

    Clearly chasing Oscar means one deserves to die.

  14. LexG says:

    Nice job on the Early Show this a.m., D-Po. I was flipping past and gave it a Spicoli style, “I know that dude!”

  15. Aris P says:

    Never thought I’d read the words “Dune” and “minimalist” in the same sentence. There’s no way to really simplify that story without gutting it. And really, who’s clamoring for another Dune? Does Paramount really think it’s going to be a blockbuster, in today’s market? Isn’t the fan-base for this property 35 and up? I wonder how much they’re going to spend to make it serviceable, and not piss off the fans, but make it “accessible”? (If ever there was a book that’s challenging and inaccessible, it’s this one). Mischer’s a geek like us, maybe, but I just don’t see how this will make any money.

  16. TuckPendleton says:

    Jeff —
    You wrote “Berg doesn’t have the visual imagination or the interest in this kind of thematic heft to make another version of Dune worthwhile. He needs to stick to simple, unpretentious stuff like Friday Night Lights or The Rundown, which were both just fine.”
    While I agree that The Rundown was simple and unpretentious (and very well done, in IMHO) how does Friday Night Lights not have “dramatic heft?” Just because it’s contemporary and doesn’t have giant space worms doesn’t mean it’s not dramatic. I’d also argue that his films are imaginative, in their re-workings of things we’ve all seen before.
    Now, he may be considered to have a focus that is too contemporary, based on his CV, to direct a space opera, and that would be a fair concern. But I don’t think you can label him as unimaginative or not able to handle dramatic heft.

  17. TuckPendleton says:

    Furthermore, to use one example, would you have thought Peter Jackson was ready to take on something the scale of LOTR based on Heavenly Creatures and The Frighteneres and his cult work?

  18. L.B. says:

    I don’t want to get into the Berg-Dune debate, but to answer the last question: Yes, Jackson’s previous work did lead me to believe that he could pull off LOTR. There was enough drive and imagination on display in his smaller stories that I assumed he was ready for a larger canvas.

  19. hendhogan says:

    i’m a huge Dune the book fan, not so much the movie and miniseries (lynch made it rain ferchissakes!).
    the article i read points to an environmental message that is important today (i’m paraphrasing). my question is what environmental message? it’s a desert planet cause it’s a desert planet. it’s not a desert planet because it was stripmined or wrecked by pollution.
    to me they are already showing a fundamental lack of understanding of the source material.

  20. LexG says:

    This just in:
    That said, I’ve always quite liked the Lynch “Dune.” Can’t speak for the Sci-Fi miniseries. But it does seem like 3 film stabs at this rather culty material in 25 years would be a bit much.
    For some reason, that just reminded me of how THE SHINING was similarly adapted to film by an iconoclastic auteur, then became a TV miniseries…
    …how has it eluded the Platinum Dunes treatment for this long?

  21. Chucky, do you have a soul? Cause you sound like a heartless monster with no soul. Christ, you’re a terrible person.

  22. jeffmcm says:

    Sorry, I misphrased what I said: Friday Night Lights is a successful sports drama with plenty of heft. My point is that it’s about much more down-to-earth issues than what Dune covers – I see no evidence that Berg knows anything about imperial economics and religious wars and complicated dynastic power struggles.

  23. jeffmcm says:

    You know, when DP wrote his Minghella piece and mentioned something about his films being ‘Oscar bait’ my first thought was “Chucky in Jersey is going to say something assholish about him”. But I chose not to type that comment, because why add to the negativity of the world, and why not give Chucky the benefit of the doubt?
    So thanks, Chucky, for proving that my gut instinct was right in the first place. You’re a horrible person with strange, unwarranted obsessions.

  24. Noah says:

    Sam Raimi reloading the Jack Ryan franchise? Really? I mean, I thought doing the Spiderman flicks would give him the freedom to get back to more personal pictures. And they tried reloading it the same year the first Bourne movie came out and Jack Ryan didn’t seem as relevant or as interesting as Bourne. Now they’re trying to reload it again as a direct result of the success of the Bourne movies.
    Personally, I’d like to see Raimi do more films in the vein of A Simple Plan, which is by far his best and most mature work.

  25. Joe Leydon says:

    Hey Chuck, here’s Death No. 3 for today. Is it OK to mourn him? I mean, he directed Trouble Man, one of the best kick-ass movies of the ’70s, but as far as I know, he never chased an Oscar.

  26. OddDuck says:

    I read a blurb on Raimi and Jack Ryan – says he wants to make the character even younger than the one Afflek played. Wow. I can already see Hayden Christiansen in the role now. I also see it sucking big time. I mean c’mon, Afflek was bad enough, but to try to lower the demographic even more?

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon