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OK, so WHY do you hate The English Patient?

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OK, so WHY do you hate The English Patient?

Old 11-27-01, 03:09 PM
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OK, so WHY do you hate The English Patient?

Enlighten me. People trash this film all the time but rarely have more to say about it than "it was boring." I could see this film not appealing to those that consider a six-pack of Beast and WWF SuperSlam a stirring Saturday night, but what about everyone else?
Old 11-27-01, 03:15 PM
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People hate it because most audiences have lousy taste and ADD.
Old 11-27-01, 03:16 PM
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Originally posted by Aragorn Strider
People hate it because most audiences have lousy taste and ADD.
I'd like to believe that...but I don't think that accounts for everyone that dislikes this film.
Old 11-27-01, 03:18 PM
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Wow, you set the table quite nicely.

I don't hate this film but some folks are too impatient to let a story draw itself out.

I think Sling Blade is similar, in that it takes time to inhale from time to time and let the story breath.

Don't get me wrong I also like action and fast dialog but the English Patient was a very good film.
Old 11-27-01, 03:20 PM
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One major problem with the film is that it whitewashes the historical Nazi ties of the main character.
Old 11-27-01, 03:35 PM
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Easy. Nothing happens. You wait for what seems like 5 hours and in the last 10 minutes, the entire story is told. If i wanted to see huge desert vistas and great looking churches, I'll watch the Discovery Channel.

The main character, the English Patient is unlikeable. Stealing his friends wife and then selling secrets to the Nazis to try to get back to her cave. The secondary character, the nurse, is cute, but does absolutely nothing but clean bandages and look longingly at the bomb sweeper guy.

This was one of those snobby movies that is so boring and dull that critics are afraid to pan it because they're scared they just didn't 'get it'.

D
Old 11-27-01, 03:49 PM
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Originally posted by Derrich
This was one of those snobby movies that is so boring and dull that critics are afraid to pan it because they're scared they just didn't 'get it'.
I don't think your last sentence holds much water. TEP might be..."elegant" in the way it is presented, but it is hardly especially elevated material. It doesn't take more than a room temperature IQ to "get it."
Old 11-27-01, 03:50 PM
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Originally posted by Groucho
One major problem with the film is that it whitewashes the historical Nazi ties of the main character.
Do you mean as compared to Ondaatje's novel or did I miss something?
Old 11-27-01, 04:00 PM
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Originally posted by JustinS


Do you mean as compared to Ondaatje's novel or did I miss something?
It's actually a criticism of the novel as well. Apparently, the historical Count Lazlo was a Nazi sympathizer. But this is hotly debated: ask five historians about it and you'll get five different answers. It's just one criticism that I see a lot.

I personally like the film and thought the photography was gorgeous. However, I always felt distanced from the characters...they seemed more like archetypes than real people. It was a good film, but not worthy of the Best Film Oscar.
Old 11-27-01, 04:19 PM
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Originally posted by Groucho


. It was a good film, but not worthy of the Best Film Oscar.

That Oscar belonged to FARGO.
Old 11-27-01, 04:36 PM
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Let me sum it up for you: Ralph Fiennes' "Creature From the Black Lagoon"-inspired stumble walk through the desert, holding his lover's corpse.

Did it induce the pangs of sadness and deep angst it was supposed to induce? Nay. Half the audience burst out in peals of laughter.
Old 11-27-01, 04:44 PM
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Originally posted by grunter
Did it induce the pangs of sadness and deep angst it was supposed to induce? Nay. Half the audience burst out in peals of laughter.
Saw it twice in the theater and I can assure you that no one in either showing had that reaction, at least not vocally.
Old 11-27-01, 05:14 PM
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Two primary issues:

1) It is as dull as watching paint dry, and this is from a fan of films like BARRY LYNDON and THE STRAIGHT STORY, so spare me the Joe-Sixpack theory. There just wasn't anything terribly compelling about this world we, the audience, were dropped into. Absolutely radiant cinematography, though, I'll grant you.

2) An utterly disinteresting romance between two robotic lead characters. As much as I admire the performers, especially Ralph Fiennes, I just never felt engaged by their romance and, since the whole plot hinged on it, I was hard-pressed to find any enjoyment out of their story.
Old 11-27-01, 05:39 PM
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I liked it the first time I saw it.

Bought the DVD and thought it was boring. "Watching paint dry" is an apt description.

Just my take on it, but the film absolutely NO repeat viewing value.
Old 11-27-01, 05:58 PM
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Heavy handed filmmaking... The direction by Minghella was not very good... it had too much showmanship to it, and not enough heart.... I really disliked this film... and i can appreciate films of this genre and (not in this case) style....

MATT
a film student who hates the english patient
Old 11-27-01, 07:03 PM
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Saw it, thought it was OK, but the hype was ridiculous. I think that is what set a lot of people off. I don't understand the passionate positive or negative reactions. Not great, not terrible, not really memorable.

But what do I know?
Old 11-27-01, 07:50 PM
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Well, to me it seemed like pseudo-David Lean schlock at times, as if saying "Oooh! Look at me! I'm Oscar material!" Kinda like most Miramax flicks. ;-) I didn't like the two leading characters very much. To me it seemed like they were just trying to bugger each other every second, which is not what you're trying to accomplish in a "romantic" epic. What saved it for me was the love story between Hana ( Juliet Binoche ) and that Indian ( Forgot his name ) dude. That had genuine passion. Regardless of my criticisms, I still liked the movie.

P.S.: I simply never "got" Fargo. It's a good movie, but it's not great.
Old 11-27-01, 07:55 PM
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I saw TEP once in the theater and once on DVD (thought I'd try it again, several years later to see if I missed something the first time), the verdict: For me, it's very flat.

None of the core characters - and I'm not sure this is because of the performances or a kind a restraint/detachment I perceive in Minghella's screenplay - compelled me to make any sort of attachment to their predicaments or how they are resolved or what they were going discover along the way.

They aren't necessarily wooden performances, per say... I just couldn't find any connection in the film to up my interest in their corner of the word. Again a very flat experience for me.

There are some beautiful shots and vistas in the film, but the spectacle just didn't save it for me.
Old 11-27-01, 08:37 PM
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IMO everything Minghella touches is gold, but I've encountered more than a few people who disliked both the English Patient and the Talented Mr. Ripley, two of my favorites from the past five years.

Different people have different tastes - go figure.
Old 11-27-01, 08:43 PM
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veritas: Now Ripley is a hell of alot better than English Patient, thanks in no small part to the wonderful performances by everyone involved.
Old 11-28-01, 05:01 AM
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[Elaine Benes] Because it sucked [/Elaine Benes]
Old 11-28-01, 08:12 AM
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Because sex in a tub doesn't work!
Old 11-28-01, 09:28 AM
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Originally posted by mmconhea
Because sex in a tub doesn't work!
Yes, it does.

Besides, I don't recall them having sex in the tub, only shampooing each other and getting into an argument.
Old 11-28-01, 09:40 AM
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Originally posted by Groucho


It's actually a criticism of the novel as well. Apparently, the historical Count Lazlo was a Nazi sympathizer. But this is hotly debated: ask five historians about it and you'll get five different answers. It's just one criticism that I see a lot.

I personally like the film and thought the photography was gorgeous. However, I always felt distanced from the characters...they seemed more like archetypes than real people. It was a good film, but not worthy of the Best Film Oscar.
Can you show me where any of the story is supposed to be based on any part of real life? Because there happens to be a Count Lazlo in the book and in real life is not a reason to assume that the story is even "loosely based" on real life, in my opinion.
Old 11-28-01, 09:46 AM
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Originally posted by veritas
IMO everything Minghella touches is gold, but I've encountered more than a few people who disliked both the English Patient and the Talented Mr. Ripley, two of my favorites from the past five years.

Different people have different tastes - go figure.
I agree with you whole heartedly. I loved TEP and have seen it multiple times. I have seen Magnolia and thought it was a pile of shite. But the great thing is, ITS JUST MY OPINION! I know plenty of other people here loved Magnolia and I think thats great, I just thought that the editor fell asleep for an hour or so. (But hey maybe I just didn't get it). Anyways, I love TEP, and I understand that others don't- it's all a matter of point of view.

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