Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Maj. Heyward will create a diversion
Ah, an evening at home, geeking out with my favorite movie. This is my first time watching the DVD on Art Boy's fancy TV with his fancy stereo system. Holy mackerel. To any of you readers who may have just moved in with art boys who have nice multimedia setups... take advantage of it and watch your favorite movies now. It was so much fun to hear the incidental dialogue ("I'm with you, Jack!") as well as the sound effects, from swelling music to snapping twig (as Mark Twain wrote, "Every time a [James Fenimore] Cooper person is in peril, and absolute silence is worth four dollars a minute, he is sure to step on a dry twig"). I have been having a ball. Art Boy went to bed hours ago.
I have spent much time in recent years ruminating over which is better - the theatrical-release edition, now only available on VHS, and the "director's expanded" edition, the only one available on DVD (unless you are Ardenstone). It may be Art Boy's nice speakers, but I am ready to weigh in on the director's side: the DVD is pretty gorgeous. Sound is lovely and the loss of the Clannad song is really rather a plus. The only problem is that three of the movie's best lines have been taken out, and in a movie with this little dialogue, that is no small problem. Still, nobody seems to have a choice in these dark days. And the new last lines spoken by Russell Means - "Once we were here" - give me a delicious frisson. (Also, once you notice the canvas covering the Chimney Rock graffiti in the climax, you absolutely cannot take your eyes off it. Editing it out for the DVD was smart.)
If anyone can find Colm Meaney in this movie - and I am assured he is in it, by both the end credits and IMDb - tell me where he pops up and I will buy you a beer. (Pete Postlethwaite, no small-name actor at the time, is in it and in one scene is completely obscured by the buttons on someone else's uniform. Michael Mann is crazy.)