Nicholas Ray's Bigger Than Life

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Can this be got anywhere in any form?

naked as sin (naked as sin), Thursday, 1 April 2004 20:47 (seventeen years ago) link

There is a bootleg DVD-R floating around, but the quality aint too good.

There was a screening of this in NYC last summer in a great theater -- what a treat it was to see it on the big screen. Excellent film!

BabyBuddha (BabyBuddha), Thursday, 1 April 2004 21:31 (seventeen years ago) link

four years pass...

James Mason's speech at the parent-teacher night is a keeper, along with the Goldwater-Reagan type amenning his mania.

Dr Morbius, Monday, 5 January 2009 18:43 (twelve years ago) link

six months pass...

This weekend at the FF.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 23 July 2009 15:48 (twelve years ago) link

One of the fanboys @ The Criterion forum wrote to them and got a seemingly postive reply that this is coming soon from the CC.

The Wild Shirtless Lyrics of Mark Farner (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 23 July 2009 23:58 (twelve years ago) link

I WISH I could watch this.

Heric E. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 24 July 2009 00:02 (twelve years ago) link

Have you seen it before? I saw it back in the mid-eighties at the old Thalia theater in a double bill with Johnny Guitar but not since. I guess it doesn't really show up on TCM.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 24 July 2009 15:58 (twelve years ago) link

All right, got a ticket for 5:40 tonight.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 24 July 2009 19:10 (twelve years ago) link

OK, please go and see this if you can.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 25 July 2009 00:54 (twelve years ago) link

really wanna post the best line out of this as a little reminiscipackage for everyone who's seen it, but it would totally ruin the joy of hearing it for the first time for everyone who hasn't. you know the one i mean though.

the heart is a lonely hamster (schlump), Saturday, 25 July 2009 02:50 (twelve years ago) link

I believe that's the one that got partially swallowed up by a splice at the end.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 25 July 2009 12:19 (twelve years ago) link

Oh no, that didn't happen. I was thinking this the In A Lonely Place thread.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 25 July 2009 12:26 (twelve years ago) link

SSSSPPPOOOILEEERRRRR

it's the one where he's reading the story from the book and someone points out that he has neglected to consider the ending, and so he points out that the ending was not the proper resolution to the way the parable should have played out

the heart is a lonely hamster (schlump), Saturday, 25 July 2009 14:39 (twelve years ago) link

Ha.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 25 July 2009 22:32 (twelve years ago) link

did anyone catch they live by night? so good

the heart is a lonely hamster (schlump), Thursday, 30 July 2009 18:18 (twelve years ago) link

Nope, but going to see Wind Across The Everglades tonight.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 July 2009 18:22 (twelve years ago) link

You may laugh at my blindspot, but I never really got James Mason until I saw this. I think that when he got to Hollywood he did some very broad roles that they might just as well have given to Herbert Marshall, but here he is really intense. Looking forward to seeing some of the Mason Most Noir's coming up next week as a subseries of the Brit Noir.

Horace Silver Machine (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 31 July 2009 18:03 (twelve years ago) link

ed buscombe's commentary track for the BFI region 2 ed of this is pretty gd

Ward Fowler, Friday, 31 July 2009 19:45 (twelve years ago) link

one year passes...

SSSSPPPOOOILEEERRRRR

it's the one where he's reading the story from the book and someone points out that he has neglected to consider the ending, and so he points out that the ending was not the proper resolution to the way the parable should have played out

― the heart is a lonely hamster (schlump), Saturday, July 25, 2009 10:39 AM (1 year ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

just watched this for the 1st time & schlump otm, best moment

johnny crunch, Tuesday, 12 July 2011 23:32 (ten years ago) link

Really appreciate the effort that went into wrapping that spoiler in so many layers of protective coating that no one who hadn't actually seen the movie would know what was being spoiled

Twenty Flight Rickroll (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 13 July 2011 01:51 (ten years ago) link

wasn't going to admit this here because it seems like not acknowledging it will allow me to ignore the onset of memory loss, but, on seeing that reposted i actually couldn't remember the quote it referred to. was that well protected. have dug it up, now.

re: bigger than life, upthread, perhaps my fav ray, i remember the male lead standing up & talking about it after the filmforum screening a couple of years back. spoke v fondly of nick & the production and then sounded totally bemused by ray's later epics, said he couldn't relate to it at all when ray was making grand pictures w/big stars in china.

Genre Fiction › Men's Adventure (schlump), Wednesday, 13 July 2011 08:32 (ten years ago) link

ten months pass...

The DVD is gorgeous -- the colors look better than they did in the fifties, I'm sure. I'm sorry to say the movie is quite uneven: a mix of tones that doesn't work, and part of the problem is the miscast Mason.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 16 May 2012 22:26 (nine years ago) link

I agree with James Harvey that the original documentary-realism of the original script that producer Mason commissioned and Ray discarded would have been a more interesting film.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 16 May 2012 22:27 (nine years ago) link

I think only Mason can make "GOD WAS WRONG" iconic.

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Monday, 21 May 2012 18:53 (nine years ago) link

two years pass...

Holy shit this movie.

DISMISSED AS CHANCE (NotEnough), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 21:34 (six years ago) link

yh srsly

Ƹ༑Ʒ (imago), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 21:36 (six years ago) link

The whole thing is one heartbreak after another as JMs mind dissolves. Even the nominally happy ending is harsh in how this episode has broken the family and will have ramifications for generations.

DISMISSED AS CHANCE (NotEnough), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 21:38 (six years ago) link

wish hollywood came out with stuff this tonally daring, this jawdropping in the present day

Ƹ༑Ʒ (imago), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 21:39 (six years ago) link

present-day rep theater audiences laugh at this movie, so there's yr answer

this horrible, rotten slog to rigor mortis (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 21:42 (six years ago) link

Want it kinda a flop at the time tho?

DISMISSED AS CHANCE (NotEnough), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 21:49 (six years ago) link

And why is it laughed at now? Is it considered too earnest, too heavy handed, what? I'm not a film critic/cinephile and maybe I'm a simpleton but I found it immensely powerful (just finished watching it tho so maybe I'll be less impressed once it sinks in)

DISMISSED AS CHANCE (NotEnough), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:04 (six years ago) link

we laugh at what we do not fully comprehend. james mason going literally insane elicits nervous giggling because hey - this isn't supposed to happen, right - what even is this happening - it isn't really happening. modern audiences unable to countenance such audacious character development

Ƹ༑Ʒ (imago), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:07 (six years ago) link

idk i'm being v trenchant there

Ƹ༑Ʒ (imago), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:08 (six years ago) link

a certain smug sector at NYC rep houses laughs at everything made before 1975

this horrible, rotten slog to rigor mortis (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:10 (six years ago) link

few Ray films were massive hits in their day (Rebel Without a Cause and, ah, King of Kings exceptions), so contemporary audiences had trouble with their sudden tonal shifts too

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:19 (six years ago) link

Xp The not supposed to happen factor, that respectable professional family men are meant to hold their shit together, and the impossibility of that facade and the dissonance it creates, that's kinda the lynchpin of the movie for me. The impossibility and damage of the patriarchy and the powerlessness of all those involved, including the patrician, piles up on top of each other until all that's left is a fantasy of a happy ending. Cortisone is almost a macguffin.

Myopic smugness is never a good look. Bad show NYC.

DISMISSED AS CHANCE (NotEnough), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:36 (six years ago) link

seen any Sirk films? You'll like him too.

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:37 (six years ago) link

No, not at all. And this is my first ray so I'm up for seeing more of him. What would you recommend?

DISMISSED AS CHANCE (NotEnough), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:42 (six years ago) link

All That Heaven Allows, touching on similar themes, and Imitation of Life. Hell, watch'em all!

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:43 (six years ago) link

Thanks, I'll check em out.

DISMISSED AS CHANCE (NotEnough), Wednesday, 15 October 2014 22:44 (six years ago) link

six years pass...

Wondering when it will be time to watch this again.

Gwar ina Babyon (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 4 September 2021 18:49 (three weeks ago) link

this was as breathless and hysterical as Fuller's Shock Corridor, but I liked it more

Dan S, Sunday, 5 September 2021 01:49 (three weeks ago) link


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