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  1. #21
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    JUST READ THE ITEMS ON "A CANTERBURY TALE".



    I'VE JUST BOUGHT IT FROM 'SENDIT' FOR LESS THAN A FIVER!



    NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL A BARGAIN!!!!



    THIS 'WEBBY' IS TRULY TERRIFIC!

  2. #22
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    I agree entirely with James re making the film- makers watch and learn from A C T and would even go so far as to give them the 'treatment' poor old Malcolm McDowell received in Clockwork Orange.

    Well it would benefit all lovers of wonderful British films.

  3. #23
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Yes, any screenwriter can learn a lot from Emeric Pressburger's scripts. They are beautifully crafted.



    In 1947 Emeric met the head of the script department at Paramount who told him that they used I Know Where I'm Going! (1945) as an example of the perfect screenplay which was shown to any writers stuck for inspiration or who needed a lesson in screen writing.



    That may well have been the case in 1947 but I think they stopped that habit long ago.



    Emeric once said that most writers are lucky if 50% of their original story finishes up on the screen - much less if they aren't involved in the scriptwriting. one of the reasons he loved working with Powell was that much more of the final film was the story as he originally wrote it.



    Steve

  4. #24
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    There's a lovely movie reference in 'A Canterbury Tale' when Eric Portman says, "...only to play,' I Kiss Your Little Hand Madam'." This of course refers to the scene in the plane in 'One Of Our Aircraft Is Missing' in which Eric was a cast member. Watch carefully, you notice Eric about to break into a knowing smile when he says that line in 'A Canterbury Tale'.

    To watch 'The Life And Death Of Colonel Blimp' after '49th Parallel' is to experience quite a delightful shock. To watch 'A Canterbury Tale' after 'Blimp' is "my goodness, what will they come up with next?" despite the fact (if you're a P&P fan, I can never call them The Archers as it conjours up images of Radio 4 at 7pm) you full no well the answer is 'A Matter of Life and Death'.

  5. #25
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    Whilst we are on the subject of Kent, Canterbury, etc., will someone explain the difference between a Kentish Man and a Man from Kent. I was told some years ago, but I have now forgotten!



    Ta.

  6. #26
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    Originally posted by JIM@Sep 5 2005, 07:46 AM

    Whilst we are on the subject of Kent, Canterbury, etc., will someone explain the difference between a Kentish Man and a Man from Kent. I was told some years ago, but I have now forgotten!



    Ta.
    Depends which side of the Medway one is born on. A "Kentish Man" is born to the west, a "Man of Kent" to the east. I was bo rn in a nursing home [long since closed] very close to the Medway but have no idea which side!



    FELL

  7. #27
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Clinton Morgan@Sep 5 2005, 12:29 AM

    There's a lovely movie reference in 'A Canterbury Tale' when Eric Portman says, "...only to play,' I Kiss Your Little Hand Madam'." This of course refers to the scene in the plane in 'One Of Our Aircraft Is Missing' in which Eric was a cast member. Watch carefully, you notice Eric about to break into a knowing smile when he says that line in 'A Canterbury Tale'.

    To watch 'The Life And Death Of Colonel Blimp' after '49th Parallel' is to experience quite a delightful shock. To watch 'A Canterbury Tale' after 'Blimp' is "my goodness, what will they come up with next?" despite the fact (if you're a P&P fan, I can never call them The Archers as it conjours up images of Radio 4 at 7pm) you full no well the answer is 'A Matter of Life and Death'.
    And then, after AMOLAD, they made some really dramatic films

    But AMOLAD is still my personal favourite.



    Steve

  8. #28
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    Originally posted by James@Dec 2 2002, 07:09 PM

    A Canterbury Tale is the only film I've seen that successfully aspires to the quality of a dream. The love for, and depiction of, a way of life that was vanishing at the time the film was made is simply unsurpassed by any British film before or since. The tragedy is that we have descended from these heights to a situation where Lock, Stock etc. can be hailed as a great film. Even if someone made a film like A.C.T today it would be lucky to be shown. Every critic, director and distributor should be shown this film and told only one word, "Learn".
    I first saw A Canterbury Tale some ten years or so ago and was unable to grasp just what an amazing film it is. I have since watched it many more times and have also read the account of the film in Paul Trittons book of the same name.



    Although the 'glueman' storyline is rather 'surreal' the film can be credited with giving the viewer a fascinating and somewhat 'magical' view of England in the early war years.



    Much can be attributed to its patriotism and naivety for making this unique amongst British films.



    Patriotism is not considered PC now but goodnes knows how this nation would have survived without it. A Canterbury Tale is if nothing else, something from which we can learn

  9. #29
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Originally posted by clearview@Sep 6 2005, 07:36 PM



    Although the 'glueman' storyline is rather 'surreal' the film can be credited with giving the viewer a fascinating and somewhat 'magical' view of England in the early war years.
    What, a man going out at night and squirting a sticky fluid onto women's heads?

    What's strange about that?

    The first draft of the script had Colpeper going out and slashing the girl's dresses.



    It's not a "whodunnit", the culprit is given away quite early on.

    It's more like a "whydunnit".



    And the landscape is almost like another character. Especially as most films at the time were made entirely in the studio.



    Steve

  10. #30
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    Aren't sections of the cathedral set blown up photographs? They look like it to me. It doesn't make the film look fake in fact the two dimensionality of it all creates an otherworldly atmosphere. I also like rear projection shots when movie characters are driving cars. I now watch 'Black Narcissus' and mentally point out the paintings.*



    Even though I know it is in a studio I still believe that they are in Canterbury Cathedral the same way I still believe that Roger and Wendy are on that small Scottish island.



    <span style="font-size:8pt;line-height:100%">*Not in a mocking way of course. I might discuss this at length in the 'Black Narcissus' thread. I believe that the sections of the set that obviously look like paintings are meant to look like paintings due to the film's mood.</span>

  11. #31
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Clinton Morgan@Sep 6 2005, 10:10 PM

    Aren't sections of the cathedral set blown up photographs? They look like it to me. It doesn't make the film look fake in fact the two dimensionality of it all creates an otherworldly atmosphere. I also like rear projection shots when movie characters are driving cars. I now watch 'Black Narcissus' and mentally point out the paintings.*



    Even though I know it is in a studio I still believe that they are in Canterbury Cathedral the same way I still believe that Roger and Wendy are on that small Scottish island.



    <span style="font-size:8pt;line-height:100%">*Not in a mocking way of course. I might discuss this at length in the 'Black Narcissus' thread. I believe that the sections of the set that obviously look like paintings are meant to look like paintings due to the film's mood.
    The shots of the Cathedral screen, between the nave and the choir do look a bit too much like the photographs or paintings that they are. But what about the shots where Peter goes in the South door and follows the organist up the stairs. That whole area was re-created in the studio but still fools some Cathedral guides into thinking that it was filmed in the Cathedral.



    In fact they couldn't film inside the Cathedral. The Dean wouldn't give permission and anyway, all the stained glass windows had been removed. But there is one shot, sneaked with a hand-held camera, of the roof inside the real Cathedral.



    The Town Hall is based on the Town Hall at Fordwich, the smallest Town Hall in Britain. But that was too small to get the cameras and lights inside, so they rebuilt that in the studio.



    In Black Narcissus, there are more paintings than you might suspect. Not just the mountains and the amazing vertiginous drop below the bell tower. The buildings of "St. Faith's" were only made with one storey. The rest is added with hanging miniatures.



    Steve

  12. #32
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    (JIM @ Sep 5 2005, 10:48 AM)

    Cheers Fell - now I know!
    And I've now discovered thanks to another member that I'm "A Man of Kent"



    I discovered A Canterbury Tale a couple of years ago and it has developed quite a hold on me.



    For most films, from the unbelievably poor through to the excellent, I find my general impression of them doesn't alter too much - though the poor I do my best to forget about and ignore in future.



    A Canterbury Tale is different. I'll admit I didn't think it was great when I first saw it but I was most definitely wrong. It seemed to get under my skin and, despite now having it on dvd, I can't resist trying to watch it every time it is shown and my rating for it goes up every time.



    A masterpiece



    FELL

  13. #33
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    (Steve Crook @ Sep 6 2005, 07:03 PM)

    What, a man going out at night and squirting a sticky fluid onto women's heads?

    What's strange about that?

    Steve
    There was a semi-porno film called The Canterbury Tales with a naked Tom Baker romping around the screen. Remembering the images I can see why he is now in Little Briton!

  14. #34
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    I've never seen that but isn't that the one by Pasolini with Robin Askwith in it as well? Pasolini also adapted 'The Arabian Nights' and 'The Decameron'. The latter book influenced Geoffrey Chaucer to write 'A Canterbury Tales'. On the Imdb it mentions that a modern version of 'The Decameron' is being directed by David Leland with 'Little Britain's' David Walliams in a role.

  15. #35
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Yes, Tom Baker was in the Pier Paolo Pasolini version I Racconti di Canterbury (1972), as was Robin Askwith.

    It has moments of interest - but not too many of them.



    Steve

  16. #36
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    (Steve Crook @ Sep 21 2005, 06:34 PM)

    Yes, Tom Baker was in the Pier Paolo Pasolini version I Racconti di Canterbury (1972), as was Robin Askwith.

    It has moments of interest - but not too many of them.



    Steve
    Let me guess Steve - you watched it purely in the name of P & P research!



    rgds

    Rob

  17. #37
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    (James @ Dec 2 2002, 07:09 PM)

    A Canterbury Tale is the only film I've seen that successfully aspires to the quality of a dream. The love for, and depiction of, a way of life that was vanishing at the time the film was made is simply unsurpassed by any British film before or since. The tragedy is that we have descended from these heights to a situation where Lock, Stock etc. can be hailed as a great film. Even if someone made a film like A.C.T today it would be lucky to be shown. Every critic, director and distributor should be shown this film and told only one word, "Learn".
    We did the book at school and that was enough for me! Couldn't understand a word of it! What with that, Homer's Illiad and Macbeth no wonder we loathed the subject at the time! All the good books in the world and we had to have our GCE exam based on the ones that weren't written in English!



    I may try and see this film though just to see what Chaucer was running on about!

  18. #38
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    There's no Miller, Squire or Wife of Bath in the P&P film. You were lucky to get Homer, Chaucer and Shakespeare. I got crap like 'My First Day At School' with lines like "Tea-cher. The one who makes the tea." Then again I was in the bottom class. The top class had to read stuff like 'To Kill A Mockingbird' and 'I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings', so I'd probably be miserable in that class.

  19. #39
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    (Clinton Morgan @ Sep 24 2005, 12:46 PM)

    There's no Miller, Squire or Wife of Bath in the P&P film.

    [snip]
    They are all in there, in the bit at the start that shows Chaucer's pilgrims.

    The Miller is the tubby one with the beard, carrying what looks like bagpipes, played by Arthur Noble.

    The Wife of Bath is the lady with the wide brimmed, black hat, played by Mila Raymanova.

    The Squire is the one that releases the falcon which famously turns into a spitfire which is being watched by the 1944 soldier, played by the same actor, James Sadler.



    Those playing the Chaucerian pilgrims in the opening sequence are all identified in Paul Tritton's book (currently out of print but we hope for good news about a reprint fairly soon)



    Steve

  20. #40
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    Acknowledged. I should have written that 'A Canterbury Tale' is not meant to be an out and out adaptation of 'The Canterbury Tales'. Or am I wrong about that?



    I did see a rather good bawdy stage version at the Reading Hexagon featuring Brian Cant and Brian Glover.

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