Joshua Gizelt (swashbuckler332) wrote,
Joshua Gizelt

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"Off the record, on the QT, and very hush-hush."

Phooey. Ghostbusters on Blu-ray has been postponed. Of course, a series of other interesting titles have been announced in its place (including Body Heat, Heathers, Carrie, Poltergeist, La Femme Nikita, The Third Man, Planet of the Apes, Casablanca, Firefly and a whole slew of James Bond movies), but I want Ghostbusters, damn it. I wonder if the delay is due to some rights issue with the package or because of quality control.

On the other hand, with the term "Special Edition" being tossed about willy-nilly in the video world, it is rather nice to see a production that lives up to that moniker. The Blu-ray of L.A. Confidential is one such example. Not only do you get a bona-fide great film with immense repeat value with a very natural (outstanding) transfer and lossless sound (not much in the way of surround activity, but that's part of the design) but the added value content is, indeed, added value instead of just leftover EPK material. Everybody involved in the original production participates, often making rather piquant observations about the characters and the film in general.

Because the film itself is so much about facades (image versus reality as personified by Kim Basinger's character, but also how people view themselves), understanding how it was made is just another layer that adds to the film's substance. Curtis Hanson's casting choices were rather bold for the time, going with two relatively unknown Australian actors; the various recollections on the featurettes and commentary illustrate how much of a shadow The Adventures of Priscilla: Queen of the Desert may have cast over Guy Pearce's career had he not been cast in this role. And I was going to make some sort of joke about I think we'll be hearing from that crazy Russell Crowe, and I don't mean just a postcard either, but there's no point; his approach to the role was completely practical, but his particular mixture of conscience and violence struck a chord with audiences, and this was without doubt the part made him one of the biggest stars in the world.

All (not some) of the lead actors participate in the commentary: Pearce, Crowe, Basinger, Kevin Spacey, James Cromwell, David Strathairn and Danny DeVito are joined by various members of the production team as well as James Ellroy and Andrew Sarris to discuss the film. I generally find such piecemeal commentaries to be trying at best, but this one breezes by the entire length of the film bristling with interesting choices and reflections on the way the movie works, how it was adapted from the book (Ellroy loves the film), and how it has impacted the careers of everybody involved.

While Hanson does not participate in the commentary, he is all over the other features on the disc, with some of the best material from him coming from the bits carried over from the original DVD, including his "Photo Pitch," which is especially notable when one looks at the completed film and sees how well he realized his intentions. It is interesting that he discusses how he specifically downplayed the period elements of the film, looking for period-accurate costumes and sets that had a contemporary feel to them so to keep the film fresh for the viewer instead of "neo-noir." This works, despite the fact that the film's characters and plot could only have existed in the time period depicted. Of course, as I've often said, if you want to really know what the genre of a film is, check out the music, and Hanson's brilliant use of period songs and Jerry Goldsmith's score root the film firmly in its setting and genre.

The only feature I would consider to be off (though I don't have a problem with its inclusion) is the pilot for a prospective L.A. Confidential television series starring Keifer Sutherland, which looks like it would have been quite a mess.
Stolen from revolos55:
  1. Grab the nearest book.
  2. Open the book to page 56.
  3. Find the fifth sentence.
  4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.
  5. Don't dig for your favorite book, the cool book, or the intellectual one: pick the CLOSEST.
  6. "No, love, go back to sleep," Granby said, and she sighed and shut her eye; but she had drawn the notice of the men: they looked up, and then they looked from Laurence to Granby, and then they looked back down again, saying nothing.
    Victory of Eagles by Naomi Novik
I'm not sure how this worked out, but:

Your results:
You are Superman
Green Lantern
Iron Man
Wonder Woman
The Flash
You are mild-mannered, good,
strong and you love to help others.

Click here to take the Superhero Personality Quiz

And here is the Firsts Meme:

Firsts Meme
  1. Who was your FIRST prom date?
    I never went to any prom.

  2. Do you still talk to your FIRST love?

  3. What was your FIRST alcoholic drink?
    Well, not counting the wine at Shabbos, it would have been that Everclear stuff jailnurse found in his father's liquor cabinet... we were looking for the highest proof and quickly learned that "190" was a number best left for cleaning the heads in one's tape deck.

  4. What was your FIRST job?
    I worked at a deli for some rather unsavory individuals.

  5. What was your FIRST car?
    It was a Chrystler E Class... yes, a bomb, and it only lasted a few months. It would undulate when idling. Yes, I said "undulate."

  6. Who was the FIRST person to text you today?
    I haven't yet been texted today.

  7. Who is the FIRST person you thought of this morning?
    Graham Beckel. I had watched L.A. Confidential last night and I had dreamed his character was trying to get me drunk.

  8. Who was your FIRST grade teacher?
    Mrs. Friedman. She was tough, and I would threaten her over math. At the time, I'm sure it was amusing. Nowadays, I'd probably be put into therapy for no reason other than I disliked math.

  9. Where did you go on your FIRST ride on an airplane?
    When I was about three or so, my family and I visited my father's cousin George in Orlando, Florida. I was nervous because I didn't know what language they spoke in Florida, and was worried that we would might the stars.

  10. Who was your FIRST best friend and are you still friends with them?
    That would have been Louis, way back in the day. I think he's on Facebook now...

  11. What was your FIRST sport played?
    Soccer, I think.

  12. Where was your FIRST sleep over?
    Probably at my friend Jesse's house when I was in, like, second or third grade or something.

  13. Who was the FIRST person you talked to today?
    I haven't spoken to anybody yet today.

  14. Whose wedding were you in the FIRST time?
    As a guest, I couldn't begin to recall. As far as being a member of the wedding party, that would have been jailnurse's wedding.

  15. What was the FIRST thing you did this morning?
    I replaced the mental image of Graham Beckel with that of a waitress whose number I recently got.

  16. What was the FIRST concert you ever went to?
    U2 at the Meadowlands.

  17. FIRST tattoo or piercing?
    I have neither.

  18. FIRST foreign country you went to for vacation?
    Canada, during my Boy Scout troop tour of New England and Canada.

  19. What was your FIRST run in with the law?
    I was pulled over for speeding by a State Trooper. He let me go.

  20. When was your FIRST detention?
    I never had detention. Not because I was any sort of angel, but because my compatriots and I never got caught.

  21. What was the FIRST state you lived in?
    New York, first and only.

  22. Who was the FIRST person to break your heart?
    Jeez... some girl in Junior High School, I can't remember her name.
  23. Who was your FIRST roommate?
    I have never had a roommate.

  24. Where did you go on your FIRST limo ride?
    The aforementioned jailnurse's wedding: I had formerly hated the things, but found it most luxurious once I was in it. It's a good thing we had some Frank Sinatra songs on a CD, too, otherwise the full effect wouldn't have been felt.

  25. Who'll repost this first?
    I've no idea.
Tags: audio, cinema, ghostbusters, high def, jerry goldsmith, memes, superman
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