Re: Trumbo

1

There seems to be, I noticed this past weekend, a serious lakc of indie theaters in DC.


Posted by: Sybil Vane | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 7:48 AM
horizontal rule
2

Waaaal...Enjoy, but this is at least the 4th such movie based on the Hollywood Ten. The Front, Jeff Goldblum, a better Ron Silver movie, maybe more.
You got that Texas Radio guy. All these superstars of blacklisting and McCarthyism

During the 70s in my middling town I knew two schmoes who had been "blacklisted" and lost their union jobs:one became a handyman and the other a freelance tv repairman. I bet there were gaffers and prop guys who lost their Hollywood jobs.

I think I have problems with focusing on the elite accomplished victims of anti-communist hysteria. Seems kinda subtly counter-revolutionary, ya know?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 7:53 AM
horizontal rule
3

I see your points, Bob. This guy's story was cool, though, and ended much like you'd expect a cheesy movie. One of those stories you'd scoff at if it weren't true.


Posted by: Becks | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 7:56 AM
horizontal rule
4

Gaffers and prop guys (likely) didn't write copious, expressive letters that could be converted into drama. And so the establishment subtly reinforces itself!


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 8:21 AM
horizontal rule
5

John Henry Faulk the radio guy? That's from memory and could be a little off, but it's just a little bit of joy when it works like it used to.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 8:28 AM
horizontal rule
6

I was never assigned it, but knew a few folks who had Trumbo's Johnny Got His Gun assigned by "edgier" English teachers back in the early 70s, generally with a bit of controversy attached. I wonder if it is read in any high schools today?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 8:35 AM
horizontal rule
7

According to Wikipedia, Metallica currently owns the rights to the film of Johnny Got His Gun.

Johnny Got His Gun and The Tin Drum were two of my dad's favorite movies, so Trumbo was pretty much a household name when I was growing up, but I confess that I've never read either book.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 8:50 AM
horizontal rule
8

In the department of working-class Hollywood, IATSE and the studios took advantage of anti-Communism to subvert Hollywood's more militant unions. One very exciting chapter of the story is told in Michael Denning's The Cultural Front--he writes about the militant Disney animators, and there are some great propaganda reproductions (of course).


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 9:16 AM
horizontal rule
9

7: FYI, The Tin Drum was by G√ľnter Grass.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 9:31 AM
horizontal rule
10

#9. Everyone knows that. Don't they?


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 9:35 AM
horizontal rule
11

10: Ah, I misread your implication in #7, so probably Trumbo and Grass were household names when you were growing up. Sorry.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 9:45 AM
horizontal rule
12

Shucks. No worries.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 10:58 AM
horizontal rule
13

6: Fwiw, I was assigned it in 9th (or 8th, but I think 9th) grade by an english teacher who i guess was edgier. No idea if it still shows up.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 11:01 AM
horizontal rule
14

I saw the film at Durham's own Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in April, & it's very good. Two of Trumbo's three children (I believe) were involved in the film, but it does try to portray him as a person rather than a pure martyr.

The letters are beautiful & surprisingly wide-ranging (a letter written to his son about masturbation, of all things, brought down the house) and made me cry more than once, so the film includes an important Unfogged motif. The letters are read, generally well, by a variety of celebrities, and there's a lot of archival footage.

In short: it's exactly the sort of thing you'll like if you like that sort of thing.


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 11:48 AM
horizontal rule
15

Yay Rah! I was going to mention the masturbation letter (hilarious) but didn't want to seem like I was selling it just on that.


Posted by: Becks | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 11:50 AM
horizontal rule
16

There's a phenomenal statement about the value of commitment for its own sake near the end which I found so inspiring at the time that I was repeating it to myself on the way out of the theatre; sadly, I failed to write it down & have since forgotten it utterly. If anybody sees the film & recognizes what I mean, I'd sure love a reminder!


Posted by: Rah | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 12:11 PM
horizontal rule
17

Wow, if this thread goes moribund and pirates don't work, I spent a while last night at IFC looking at the "50 Worst Sex Scenes in Movie History" I remember the previous thread on the 50 Best.

WWOD?


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 06-27-08 4:26 PM
horizontal rule