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LoveThatMoney
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re: Shakespeare in Love


I would agree with this except:

(a) the movie wasn't written by Spielberg and

(b) Hanks' character is clearly an intellectual who is not a coward.

Given that Hanks is himself an intellectual who is not only capable of heroic feats, but is capable of leading heroic feats, I think your notion that the film is an apology to the "Greatest Generation" for the baby boomers spitting on the country by dodging the draft is a bit tenuous.

Particularly since at the end of the film, Opum man's up and takes an entire firing squad captive.

So... not really sure how Opum is "Spielberg wallowing in self-pity," but I like your use of $10 words.






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H-Town Tiger
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

We could probably do this all day


I admit i do hold it against Dances with Wolves, however, I didn't see it when it came out because it did not look interesting to me.

While i think Pulp Fiction should have won, I don't hold that against Forrest Gump. I never thought FG was great and it did come out first.

If SPR is baby boomers trying to make an amends to their parents. FG is boomers self importance on full display.






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LoveThatMoney
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

This is where you lose me. I think you are wrong for two reasons:

1. As Captain Miller clearly shows, one CAN be both brave and an intellectual at the same time. He was obviously college educated, like Upham, and was also a school teacher. If that doesn't scream "intellectual" then I don't know what else does.

2. Upham is an essential character in the film as he is the one who helps flesh out the character of John H. Miller. They both identify with each other as they are both intellectuals and they seem to form some kind of bond that isn't present with the other men in the squad.

Upham was a non-combatant, having not held a rifle since basic training. The only reason he was pulled into the mission is because the translators Miller had in his company had been killed. Because he wasn't one of them, and because the guy had not seen a lick of action, the veteran guys in the squad were destined to pick on him.

Despite his weak and cowardly nature, Upham becomes the moral compass of Miller's unit on their quest to find Ryan. In fact…I would argue Upham is most instrumental in making the key part of the story happen. After Wade is killed in their assault on the German machine gun position everyone, including Miller, wanted to execute the German POW on the spot. Upham was able to change Miller's mind and the German soldier is set free. As we all know, this same German soldier goes on to be the one who fires the fatal shot that kills Captain John H. Miller.

My favorite scene of the movie is the one where Upham, having listened to Mellish getting killed from the confines of the stairwell, stares up at the offending German. Upham has a clear shot at this guy. The German has no rifle, just his bayonet, and is completely and utterly defenseless. Upham, however, breaks down into tears as he finds himself unable to take the man's life and allows the German soldier to pass him on the stairwell to continue the fight against his comrades in arms.



All this shite here? Yeah. I agree with it.






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H-Town Tiger
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

Given that Hanks is himself an intellectual who is not only capable of heroic feats, but is capable of leading heroic feats, I think your notion that the film is an apology to the "Greatest Generation" for the baby boomers spitting on the country by dodging the draft is a bit tenuous.


it doesn't affect that at all. SPR is part of a larger, mostly boomer driven notion that the WWII generation was the greatest ever. That notion is nothing more than one more expample of boomer narcassism imo.




This post was edited on 1/15 at 3:48 pm


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H-Town Tiger
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

but most are actually well thought out


could not disagree with this more.






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iwyLSUiwy
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re: Shakespeare in Love


But it's generally agreed that all four of those (aside from dances with wolves), are pretty great movies.

Shakespeare In Love is now considered a crap movie because of the Oscars. same with Chariots of Fire. Too much stock is put into the Oscars.

Shakespeare In Love is a good movie, best picture? Probably not. But it losing doesn't effect my view of it at all, as it seems to do with a lot of people.






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Baloo
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re: Shakespeare in Love


H-Town said it more succinctly:

quote:

SPR is part of a larger, mostly boomer driven notion that the WWII generation was the greatest ever. It is nothing more than one more expample of boomer narcassism.


But to address your other comments:

quote:

(a) the movie wasn't written by Spielberg and

that doesn't matter at all. I'll take a wild, half-court heave in the dark and guess that the writer is also a Baby Boomer. The criticism is the same.
quote:

(b) Hanks' character is clearly an intellectual who is not a coward.

No, he is not. He is a school teacher, which is leagues away from being an intellectual. Teachers are not elite academics in their ivory towers, they have far more in common with the working class. It is also important that none of the soldiers knew Hanks was a teacher until this poetry spouting sissy showed up.

Hanks may not be salt of the earth, but he is still a regular guy who does an honest day's work. No one thinks of teachers as the out of touch, pointed headed intellectuals of academia.

quote:

Particularly since at the end of the film, Opum man's up and takes an entire firing squad captive.

Well, only after his cowardice kills the movie's hero.

quote:

So... not really sure how Opum is "Spielberg wallowing in self-pity," but I like your use of $10 words.

Spielberg is, not Opum. And, those are nowhere near $10 words. Only one of them is even three syllables, and that's by adding an -ing. But I see that you identify with anti-intellectualism almost instinctively.






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LoveThatMoney
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

Spielberg is, not Opum. And, those are nowhere near $10 words. Only one of them is even three syllables, and that's by adding an -ing. But I see that you identify with anti-intellectualism almost instinctively.


Whoa, whoa, whoa. Anti-intellectualism? How the frick do I identify with "anti-intellectualism?" I only combated your point about Opum's character representing the draft dodging baby boomers which amounts to Spielberg wallowing in self-pity.

And how is what I said anti-intellectual? I have no issue with intellectuals, intellectual behavior, or intellect. Hell, I am an intellectual, though I don't throw around words such as "effete" - which is at least a $5 word - on a message board like a strutting peacock. By the way, "haliography" doesn't make a damn bit of sense as used in this context, but I digress.

In the context of the film, Hanks is an intellectual. The role of teacher classically is one of an intellectual. Moreover, Hanks' character is routinely engaged in his own thoughts, has affinity for the spoken and written word, and has a superb mind. As for the fact that the others didn't know he was college educated or a teacher, that is of little to no consequence to him being an intellectual. The fact that his behavior is that of an intellectual, that he does read the classics, that he can go toe-to-toe with Opum is enough to show that he is an intellectual. The fact that he hid his intellect from his group highlights exactly what you are driving at: that the general notion of the intellectual is of a weak-kneed, effete arse who couldn't hold a rifle let alone shoot it straight. But Hanks' character CAN do that and after Opum sees the grit of war, so can he. The fact that Opum is a wuss throughout most of the film highlights his dramatic change as a result of the war and shows, again, that the stereotype of the weak intellectual is misplaced.

And how the frick is it boomer narcissism to claim that the generation before them was the Greatest Generation? That makes no fricking sense and is completely bass ackwards. It would be narcissistic if the boomers were attempting to claim they were the greatest ever.

As for why I said Spielberg didn't write the film, you mentioned that this film highlighted Spielberg's self-pity and how it "talk[ed] about what a loser and a coward he is." The fact that he didn't write the film is certainly evidence against this notion.

In any case, you seem to be more interested in winning your argument by beating me, or anyone who disagrees with you, over the head with stilted language rather than precise argument. No matter how you slice it, your argument has flaws.

I'm not saying the boomer generation doesn't have some sick need to apologize to the "Greatest Generation" for being "draft dodgers," but I think you may be reading far too into this. I have pointed out the weaknesses in your assessment of the film's characters as a result. Please feel free to attack my intellect by condemning me as an "anti-intellectual" all you want. I stand by my disagreement with you and I have offered clear argument.

That said, I'm not here to change your mind on the film. You don't like it. That's fine.



This post was edited on 1/15 at 4:29 pm


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H-Town Tiger
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

And how the frick is it boomer narcissism to claim that the generation before them was the Greatest Generation?


because it is boomers parents and the boomers claim that it is the greatest generation.

quote:

It would be narcissistic if the boomers were attempting to claim they were the greatest ever.


This they have done over and over.







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LoveThatMoney
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

It would be narcissistic if the boomers were attempting to claim they were the greatest ever.


This they have done over and over.


That's fine, and I'm not disagreeing with that, but I fail to see how claiming another generation is the best generation ever is narcissistic. It is the very definition of NOT narcissistic.






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H-Town Tiger
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re: Shakespeare in Love


Baloo expalained it better above, they realized what jack asses they were to their parents, its not worth quibbling over definitions.





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LoveThatMoney
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

Baloo expalained it better above, they realized what jack asses they were to their parents, its not worth quibbling over definitions.


Gotcha. Well, I can get behind that. And I don't want to quibble over definitions, but Baloo quoted you in his post about me being anti-intellectual, so I had to point out the fact that narcissistic didn't make sense in the way he was trying to use it. And I can also get behind the boomer generation attempting to apologize to the "Greatest Generation," just don't see it in SPR.






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Baloo
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

And how is what I said anti-intellectual? I have no issue with intellectuals, intellectual behavior, or intellect. Hell, I am an intellectual, though I don't throw around words such as "effete" - which is at least a $5 word - on a message board like a strutting peacock. By the way, "haliography" doesn't make a damn bit of sense as used in this context, but I digress.

It is an inherently anti-intellectual argument to insult the other person for using big words. Particularly when the words you pointed out weren't very big. But whatever. That's neither here nor there. I think it's an anti-intellectual film, but that doesn't make Spielberg inherently anti-intellectual. I used "effete" because the word fit, by the way. Sorry you have a problem with it. I talk the way I talk (or type the way I type).

And I think it is a haliography. I don't think the film has any purpose for existing other than to say how great the WWI generation is. It is the film's raison d'etre. I don't even think any person involved would deny that is the purpose of the film. Not only does the term haliography fit, I'd say this is the most haliographic film possible. It is all about proclaiming the greatness of the "Band of Brothers".

quote:

In the context of the film, Hanks is an intellectual. The role of teacher classically is one of an intellectual. Moreover, Hanks' character is routinely engaged in his own thoughts, has affinity for the spoken and written word, and has a superb mind. As for the fact that the others didn't know he was college educated or a teacher, that is of little to no consequence to him being an intellectual. The fact that his behavior is that of an intellectual, that he does read the classics, that he can go toe-to-toe with Opum is enough to show that he is an intellectual. The fact that he hid his intellect from his group highlights exactly what you are driving at: that the general notion of the intellectual is of a weak-kneed, effete arse who couldn't hold a rifle let alone shoot it straight. But Hanks' character CAN do that and after Opum sees the grit of war, so can he. The fact that Opum is a wuss throughout most of the film highlights his dramatic change as a result of the war and shows, again, that the stereotype of the weak intellectual is misplaced.

I think that's a very generous reading of Opum's character that is not really in the text of the film. I think his character is thoroughly repudiated as being wrong in all of his beliefs. He is not the moral center, he is a weakling and it is only when he rejects his prior beliefs is when he can become one of the boys. And its not like murdering a guy who was surrendering was a brave act, but let's not delve into that. He's a weak character you're meant to dislike.

quote:

As for why I said Spielberg didn't write the film, you mentioned that this film highlighted Spielberg's self-pity and how it "talk[ed] about what a loser and a coward he is." The fact that he didn't write the film is certainly evidence against this notion.

In any case, you seem to be more interested in winning your argument by beating me, or anyone who disagrees with you, over the head with stilted language rather than precise argument. No matter how you slice it, your argument has flaws.

Spielberg is the director and is thus the "author" of the film. He's responsible for the tone and pretty much the entire final product. So yes, it is his attitudes which matter. But you can use the artful dodge of saying someone else wrote it, but the criticism that it is the Boomer generation wallowing in self-pity for rejecting their fathers still holds water. Extend it to the writer as well.

I'm not interested in stilted language or whatever, but you really seem hung up on my word choices. I don't really care. But I think it's odd you engage in ad hominem attacks or dodges of my argument and then have the gall to talk about the intellectual honesty of my argument.

Clearly, my argument was about the Boomer attitude towards the "Greatest Generation", but you want me to be this guy who is concerned with Spielberg personally. I'm not. My problem with the film has to do with the Boomer narcissism and how this film serves as an apology to their fathers. My general attitude is that I'm not the one with the daddy issues, and I wish it had been left out of the film.






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LoveThatMoney
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re: Shakespeare in Love


First, I'd like to stop this pissing match and extend the olive branch, but before I do, I will reply.

(a) I wasn't initially insulting you for using big words. I was actually being sincere. Since my initial post, I have stated that you appear to use stilted language in your posts, which is true, and it appeared to be in an attempt to lend credence to your arguments rather than relying on the arguments themselves. No one uses words like "effete" or "haliography" in everyday conversation. I have no problem with it and, in fact, I rather enjoy it. Nevertheless, in an argument on a message board, it appears to be an attempt at befuddling those who argue against you.

(b) I have since found a different meaning for the words "haliographic" and "haliography." I have always understood it to mean "a description of the sea," which you can find easily enough by googling "haliography." Haliographic, as an adjective, appears to have a meaning closer to hyperbolic or, to put it in layman's terms, putting the pussy on a pedestal. I've never heard it used in that manner before.

(c) I believe Opum is the moral center of the film whose morality is misplaced in the world of war. His understanding of war and the world is idealized and filled with the grandiose notions of duty to country, despite his cowardice. His misplaced morality causes much pain to his comrades and to himself. You are certainly meant to dislike him, I agree, but you are also meant to see the toll of war and the evolution of his character from weak to strong at the end.

(d) I wasn't attempting to artfully dodge the fact that this is Spielberg's movie. It seemed as if you were saying he was the sole impetus behind the characters and their development (or lack of it). I disagreed. The screenwriter certainly had something to do with it. And yes, the notion that there is an odd sense of the boomer generation rejecting their fathers may still hold water. Nevertheless, my point of this is that the fact that Spielberg did not write the script certainly chips away at the argument that it is Spielberg's Ode to the Greatest Generation, particularly as it relates to Opum as a character.

(e) Let me say that the ad hominem attacks began with you stating I am an anti-intellectual, which is both insulting and incorrect. Let me also say that I have in no way attempted to dodge your arguments and, in fact, have attacked them head-on with concrete examples against them. I have the gall to challenge the intellectual honesty of your arguments because of the arguments I have posed against you. In fact, I'll say this: I do think the film is meant to pay homage to the "Greatest Generation." I can even buy your argument that it is based out of some strange need for the boomer generation to apologize to their fathers. What I don't agree with is:

(f) That Opum is in some way an illustration of the boomer generation and, thereby, the embodiment of Spielberg's (and the boomers') self-pity, which is where your argument began in the first place. I don't want you to be the guy who is attacking Spielberg personally, rather I disagree with your initial argument, which is that Opum is the embodiment of the boomer generation. Or, at least, you have not convinced me of that yet. And fair enough you wish Opum had been left out of the film, but to me, he was probably the most interesting character aside from Hanks'.

In any case, this is likely better resolved over beers rather than over a message board. So I'll leave you with this: I apologize for any affront to your person or personality I have made. I am not out to attack anyone, except H-Town Tiger, who I already told I was merely joking when I sarcastically attacked him for hating popular, critically acclaimed films in a thread about Shakespeare In Love.



This post was edited on 1/15 at 6:18 pm


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Pectus
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re: Shakespeare in Love


Well this thread turned out wayyy more interesting than I thought it would.


I didn't read this deeply into Saving Private Ryan and I really liked Shakespeare in Love.

So I don't have a bone to pick here, but this has been a helluva read.






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molsusports
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

For those who've seen it, is it really that good? Just curious.



yes, people who don't like more than one genre will disagree tho






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Baloo
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re: Shakespeare in Love


(a) Clearly, I do use those words in everyday conversation. I just did. I'm not trying to befuddle anyone.

(b) Well, now you have. But it is fairly common in criticisms of biopics.

(c) I think you're wrong. A moral center character requires that we like him or at least respect him. We do neither. He's a character meant to be hated precisely because of his weakness, not his moral clarity. His timidity is what sets the German free who kills Tom Hanks. The film clearly tells you where to side in that moral debate (HINT: Not on Opum's side)

(d) You were, but that's cool. My criticism was clearly ripping on the Boomer generation and Spielberg as their stand in, as he was the guy who made the movie. Sure, the screenwriter had something to do with it -- I'm willing to bet he's a Boomer, too. And Spielberg is the author as he is the director. The director has final say what goes in the final cut.

(e) Actually, it started with you making fun of me using "$10 words". I pointed out that was a fairly ironic tact to take against someone arguing the film is anti-intellectual. You were also the one who said people who don't like SPR are "morons". But whatever.

(f) Yes, I'm well aware you disagree with my position. You believe Opum is the moral center, which I think is a very generous read on his character which is pretty much contrary to his behavior in the entire run of the film. I think he's a character meant to show how weak and horrible the pointy headed college kids who dodged combat are. Which, as you pointed out earlier, fits the film. Opum had avoided combat. And when I say the film is anti-intellectual, let's put it like this: can you imagine any other character in the film being such a coward? Do you think this is the same film if, say, the working class New Yorker is the coward who can't handle combat?

Why can't it be resolved on a message board? Well, it won't be resolved for obvious reasons, but message boards exist to discuss things. So why don't we actually discuss? Agreements are boring. Genuine disagreements are interesting.

I beat you to the beer, though.






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iwyLSUiwy
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

Well this thread turned out wayyy more interesting than I thought it would.




Im lost






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dunkelman
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re: Shakespeare in Love


SIL is a great movie. SPR is a great movie. TRL not even in my top 10 war movies. It's no Patton, Bridge over the River Kwai or Apocolypse Now, that's for sure. Hard to bitch when a great movie is picked. You can't give it to Speilburg every time he makes a movie. Look how long it took Scorcese.





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BigAppleTiger
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re: Shakespeare in Love


quote:

Shakespeare in Love


The first movie I ever saw with Ben Affleck that I didn't see or hear him acting. It was the first time I saw his potential as an actor. The rest was a good light-hearted romantic romp but nothing sublime.






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