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Old 11-28-2005, 11:17 PM   #46
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Saw it tonight for the second time. Cried MORE. I can't decide who my favorite character is... I know I don't like Roger or Maurine much, Mimi is okay, I like Collins and Joanne, but I adore Angel and am very fascinated with Mark. Oh, and Benny may as well not exist... his role is quite minimal.
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Old 11-29-2005, 06:36 PM   #47
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I think the critics also miss the point that the entire musical is based on another incredibly successful and well-known "musical" Puccini's La Boheme.

The story is not new... just the way it is told (and the disease it represents).

I can understand the criticisms of it being a commercialized, glossy version of the bohemian lifestyle and all that "bohemianism" represents... but at the same time, bohemians do whatever feels right and good without caring about the social consequences... which circles back on the argument the critics are making.

Anyway... I absolutely adore the musical and I can't wait to see the movie!
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Old 11-29-2005, 07:13 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally posted by hippy

I can understand the criticisms of it being a commercialized, glossy version of the bohemian lifestyle and all that "bohemianism" represents... but at the same time, bohemians do whatever feels right and good without caring about the social consequences... which circles back on the argument the critics are making.

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Old 11-30-2005, 11:23 AM   #49
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I saw the movie while I was home for Thanksgiving last week. I was not impressed. I've seen the musical on Broadway and on tour a few times, and I've had the OBC recording for years, seen the OBC 5 year reunion concert, etc, etc. The movie just wasn't what it could/should have been. Chris Columbus was flat-out the wrong choice for director. They cut songs out that shouldn't have been ("Halloween" anyone? "Contact," and the "Voice Mails" I think are more important than they give them credit for...all but one were nixed).

Adam Pascal was pretty bad as Roger. I've seen him in several Broadway shows, and I enjoy his original music, but he's not a particularly good actor. He was surprisingly good in Cabaret, so I was expecting more from him here.

And since when is Collins a fall-down drunk? I certainly don't expect (and I absolutely don't want) any of them to be straight laced prudes, but the fact they took his "to marijuana" line and the fact that he brought some Stoli for Mark and Roger on Christmas as a cue to make him continually stoned and/or drunk off his ass got tiresome.

And Joanne/Maureen's committment ceremony? I don't think so. I guess since they cut out Joanne's parents' voice mail, they felt they didn't need to acknowledge that the chances that her wealthy, lawyer parents would probably be less than thrilled with the fact that their daughter is off with Maureen, the trashy femme performance artist. "Sure honey, bring your new girlfriend (in her leather pants) to have your lesbian committment ceremony at our country club." Now don't take this the wrong way. I have ZERO issues with Maureen and Joanne being a couple. Though I do have a HUGE problem with her parents being so inexplicably fine with it. IMHO, it just wouldn't have happened. (Same goes w/ Collins being allowed to stay w/ Angel in his hospital room, circa 1980-whatever...As far as I could tell, it would be more like "you're not 'family,' get the hell out.")

They sanitized this movie WAY too much. They should have gone w/ the R rating, and left some semblance of the grittiness that should have been there in tact.

Sorry if this offends, since most of the people here seemed to love it. I just was not as impressed.

Oh, and whoever said Fredi Walker was offered but had to pull out because she was pregnant. I think that was Daphne Rubin-Vega (original Mimi) who just had a baby a year or so ago. As far as I know, Fredi (though I suppose she could have had a baby as well) was living in Barbados and had little interest in making a delve back into show business. Fine by me, as I rather enjoyed Tracie Thoms (I saw her on Broadway in Drowning Crow w/ Alfre Woodard and Anthony Mackie, and she was absolutely wonderful).
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Old 11-30-2005, 12:21 PM   #50
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I agree they should have left the answering machine messages as songs. They're funny when they're sung, and you can see how that would annoy Mark. But spoken, it's boring, not funny, and not all that annoying.

I read a blurb interview with some of the cast on CNN.com the other day, and Anthony Rapp (Mark) confirmed that Daphne Rubin-Vega not only was pregnant, but there was a mutual agreement that she was too old for the part. Which, to me, is kind of silly, because even though Mimi's supposed to be 19, the rest of the cast looks like Beverly Hills 90210: young-looking, but no way can they pass for the ages they're playing.
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Old 11-30-2005, 01:49 PM   #51
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Well, (I love her, but) Daphne's pushing 40 and she looks it. They never really say how old the other folks are, and I'd say they all skew younger than their actual ages. They certainly aren't going to pass for 20 or anything, but I don't think Anthony Rapp looks 34-35 (or however old he is), same w/ Adam Pascal for the most part.

And yeah, I think the voicemails are important. It gives an idea as to where these people are coming from. I also think they could have really embraced Mark as the narrator. They had his voice-over at the very beginning and end, but I think it would have worked more as it being his story to tell: including the voicemails from his parents, including his inter-dialogue (Roger/April's deal...they never even said anything about her killing herself; Joanne/Maureen pre-TMOLM; HALLOWEEN; his Buzz Line work, etc, etc, etc). I think there are too many characters, too many stories, not to have one solidified person to be "telling" their story, and since it could easily be tied in w/ Mark filming his documentary, I think Columbus really missed the mark (no pun intended!) there. Not to ape off Chicago w/ all the songs being told through Roxie's eyes, I think they should have done something in the same vein here with Mark. I think it would have worked a lot better.
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Old 11-30-2005, 03:18 PM   #52
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It's really odd that Halloween was not in the film as it was even on the motion picture soundtrack.
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Old 11-30-2005, 03:39 PM   #53
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From what I gather it was a very last minute cut. I guess it was even in some early screenings. Big mistake as far as I'm concerned. Maybe the DVD will be better with a bunch of the cut songs, etc. I think it had so much potential; it's just sad to see that it didn't really live up to it.
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Old 11-30-2005, 09:41 PM   #54
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What's ironic is that so many critics are knocking the story and the musical won a Pulitzer prize in 1996. I don't remember hearing these types of criticisms when the show opened.

Yeah, I wish Halloween would have been left in too. Overall, I thought the film was enjoyable.
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Old 12-01-2005, 12:07 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally posted by WildHoneyAlways
What's ironic is that so many critics are knocking the story and the musical won a Pulitzer prize in 1996. I don't remember hearing these types of criticisms when the show opened.
.
A lot of those critics are also saying that it was received that way because of Jonathan Larson's death.
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Old 12-01-2005, 12:14 AM   #56
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But I think a lot of stuff just didn't come across as strongly on film. I didn't really see any connection between Mimi and Roger (or a lot of the characters for that matter). There didn't really seem to be a ton of chemistry there. And I think when things aren't clicking as well as they could, then some of the flaws show up more clearly. I've seen the show on stage several times, and when you've got a cast that just doesn't click, the show doesn't thrive like it should. I think most of the individual cast members are great, but I don't think they came off with the same connected vibe that the OBC had on stage.
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Old 12-01-2005, 01:50 PM   #57
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I was listening to the movie soundtrack this morning, and I think I prefer it to the Broadway version. Maybe because it's fresher to me, I don't know.

One thing I don't like is that in "Out Tonight," Rosario Dawson's vocals are WAY too low in the mix. I thought she did a great job in the song, and it's a shame the mix covers it up too much.
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Old 12-01-2005, 02:38 PM   #58
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I never bothered buying the movie soundtrack, but I found that to be the case with a lot of the music (especially early on) in the movie. I felt like if I didn't already know the lyrics to "Rent" (the song, not the whole show) I wouldn't have had a clue what they were singing.
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Old 12-01-2005, 03:36 PM   #59
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Speaking of lyrics, what's the last word in the song "Rent"? I always thought it was "... 'cause everything is spent," but it sounds nothing like "spent" on the soundtrack.
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Old 12-01-2005, 05:26 PM   #60
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The last word is actually "rent," too.

Thus sayeth the soundtrack lyrics book.
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