★ Wonder Boys (film)
Wonder boys 2000 Comedy-drama film directed by Curtis Hanson and written by Steve Kloves. International co-production USA, UK, Germany and Japan, it is based on the novel of the same title by Michael Chabon. Michael Douglas stars as Professor Grady Tripp, a novelist who teaches creative writing at the University, but was unable to finish his second novel.
The film was shot in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, including locations at Carnegie-Mellon, Chatham University of Pittsburgh, and shady side Academy. In other places, PA included beaver, Rochester and Rostraver township. After the film flopped at the box office, was the second attempt to find an audience with a new marketing campaign and a November 8, 2000 re-release which also was a financial disappointment.
1. The plot. (Сюжет)
Professor Grady Tripp is a writer who teaches creative writing at an unnamed Pittsburgh University. Hes having an affair with the rector of the University Sarah Gaskell, whose husband, Walter, is the Chairman of the English Department in which Grady is a Professor. gradys third wife, Emily, has just left him, and he has failed to repeat the Grand success of his first novel, published several years ago. He continues to work on a second novel, but the more he tries to finish it the less able he finds himself to invent a satisfactory ending. The book is more than two and a half thousand pages and is still far from complete. He spends his free time Smoking marijuana.
gradys students include James Leer and Hannah green. Hannah and James are friends and both are very good writers. Hannah, who rents a room in a large housegradys attracted to Grady, but he will not reciprocate. James is enigmatic, quiet, dark and enjoys writing fiction more than he first shows.
During a party at the Gaskells house, Sara reveals to Grady that she is pregnant with his child. Grady finds James standing outside holding what he claims that a replica gun, had won his mother at the fairs during her high school years. However, the gun is quite real, as James shoots the Gaskells dog when he finds it attacking Grady. James also stole a very valuable exhibit of Marilyn Monroe out of the house. Grady is unable to tell Sara of this incident as she forced him to choose between her and Emily. As a result, Grady is forced to keep a dead dog in the trunk of his car for most of the weekend. He also allows James to follow him around, fearing that he might be in depression or even suicide. Gradually he realizes that much of what James tells him about himself and his life, not true, apparently intended to obtaingradys sympathy.
Meanwhile, the chief editorgradys, Terry Crabtree, arrived in the city under the pretext of a visit to the University annual festival, a literary event for aspiring authors. In reality, Terry is here to see if Grady wrote anything worth publishing, as mens careers depend ongradys future book. Terry arrives with a transvestite whom he met on the flight, called Antonia Sloviak. Couple to become intimate in a bedroom at the Gaskells party, but immediately after that, Terry James meets and falls in love with him, and Tony unceremoniously sent home. After a night on the town, Terry and James semi-conscious to flirt all night, which eventually leads to the two spending an intimate evening together in one of the spare roomsgradys.
Tired and confused, Grady phones Walter and reveals to him that he is in love with Sara. Meanwhile, Walter was also a correlation between the disappearance of the memorabilia of Marilyn Monroe and James. The following morning the Pittsburgh police arrive with Sara to escort James to the Chancellors office to discuss the consequences of their actions. Memorial items still in the cargradys, who is clearly missing. The car was donated to him by a friend as payment for the loan, and over the weekend Grady has come to suspect that the car was stolen. Throughout his trips around the city, people claiming to the real owner of the machine repeatedly molested Grady. In the end, it tracks the car, but a dispute over its ownership of a large part of his manuscript blows out of the car and disappears. The owner of the car gives him a ride to the University with his wife, oola, in the passenger seat of the stolen relics.
Grady finally sees what I do involves having to make a difficult choice. Grady tells oola the story memorable and allows her to leave with him. Worried that the choicegradys is due to the damage Jamess Future, Terry convinces Walter not to press charges by agreeing to publish his book about Joe DiMaggio and Marilyn Monroe.
Grady tells the story of the main characters: Hannah graduates and becomes a magazine editor, James throws and moves to new York to rework his novel for publication, and Terry "is on, left myself." Grady finishes typing his new book, which is a report on recent events, then watches Sara and the baby arrive home.
2.1. Production. Development. (Развитие)
After the Secrets of Los Angeles, Curtis Hanson is working on the script of his own and reading other scripts with a keen interest for his next film. Actress Elizabeth McGovern advised Hanson to work with screenwriter Steve Kloves. When he gave the writers for wonder boys and was told that Michael Douglas was interested in starring, he "fell in love with these characters and they make me laugh." Hanson also identified with Grady Tripp and the "thing inside him: frustration, hunger, thirst and so forth."
2.2. Production. The script. (Сценарий)
Kloves, best known for writing and directing the fabulous Baker boys, returned to film business after a voluntary seven years of retirement for the novel adaptation of Michael Chabons for the money and because he identified with Grady. It was originally going to make a film, but bowed and Hanson came on Board. Kloves had never adapted a novel before but was encouraged by Chabon to make the material their own. Was made additional changes, when Hanson came on Board. For example, he felt that James Leer would be a fan of Douglas Sirks movies, in contrast to Frank Capra as he is in the novel.
2.3. Production. Casting. (Кастинг)
Paramount was not interested in making quirky characters Comedy-drama until Douglas agreed to work below his usual large fee. The actor gained 25 pounds for the film by eating pizza, subs and drank a lot of beer. One of the challenges Hanson was to take a plot that, as he put it, "meandering and, apparently, sort of aimless," and a character that "does things that even he doesnt really know why he does them," and try to create a "feeling of focus" to keep the audience interested. Another problem the Director faced was working in actual locations in very cold weather that is constantly changing.
Robert Downey Jr. was on probation during the winter of 1999 when Hanson considered him a role in wonder boys. Hanson was cautious because I have history of drugs and concerned because it would be a cool film, shot in sequence in Pittsburgh in the winter. Downey flew to Pittsburgh and had a long conversation with Hanson where they discussed their problems. The actor demonstrated a commitment to the project and Hanson hired him. Reportedly, Downey acted professionally during the entire four and a half month shoot but after it ended, he returned to Los Angeles and violated his parole.
In an interview with Marc Maron, actor Rob McElhenney said that he was originally cast in the minor role of Holmes love interest, but Hanson that he would be cut from the film in post-production.
2.4. Production. Shooting. (Съемки)
Paramount suggested shooting wonder boys in Toronto or new York, but after reading the book, Hanson realized how important Pittsburgh was to the story that it was a "wonder boy", much like the movies, the main character Grady Tripp, "a city that had a glorious past of wealth and success that ended. And then he had to deal with figuring out whats next. What will happen after victory?" Wonder boys was filmed in Pittsburgh, including locations at Carnegie-Mellon, Chatham College, and shady side Academy. In other places, PA included beaver, Rochester and Rostraver township. Hanson felt that Pittsburgh was "right, emotionally and thematically" for the film. The city is experiencing a mild winter during the films, and they had to use a lot of artificial snow.
Hanson contacted Dante Oh, I about working on the film in November 1998. Theyve worked together before on the Secrets of Los Angeles. Oh, I had six weeks of pre-production, which he used to perform various tests and to remove a number of important background plates for several scenes that take place at night, in cars. He knew that these scenes included some very critical steps and suggested using the green screen process for greater control. During pretrial proceedings, Hanson and Oh, I used the system the Kodak pre view to the storyboard complicated sequences by altering digital images so that the simulated characteristics of film cameras. Hanson suggested Oh, I see the triumph of his technique to hold the camera very close to the actors and carrying deep focus from one actor to another. Oh, I suggested using a hand-held camera so that the film wont look static. On the first day of filming, they included some hand-held shooting. Hanson liked the results and they used the technique extensively for the rest of the shoot.
3. Soundtrack. (Саундтрек)
Henson was a fan of Bob Dylans music since childhood and a great admirer of his soundtrack for Pat Garrett and Billy the kid. Dylan admired Hansons previous film, the Secrets of Los Angeles and after much convincing, screened 90 minutes of rough footage from Wonder boys. Hanson raised Dylan because, as he said, "who knows more about the wonder boy and the trap may be about expectations and fear again?"
In addition to Dylan, Hanson built the score around nine singer-songwriters including Leonard Cohen and Neil young. The entire soundtrack is integrated into the film with Hanson playing several songs for the actors on the set in Pittsburgh, to convey the scenes of "sound texture", as he put it. Soundtrack several songs by Bob Dylan, including one new composition, "things have changed", that would win the Academy award for best original song. Hanson also created a music video for the song, filming new footage of Bob Dylan in the movies various locations and editing it with footage used in wonder boys as if Dylan were actually in the film. According to Hanson, "every song reflects the movie theme search for past promise, future success and dedication."
- "The Old Man" - Neil Young 3:23.
- "Need Your Love So Bad" - Little Willie John 2:17.
- "Philosophers Stone" - Van Morrison 6:03.
- "Watching the wheels" - John Lennon 3:32.
- "Buckets of rain" - Bob Dylan 3:23.
- "Reason to believe" – Tim Hardin 2:00.
- "A childs claim to fame" - Buffalo Springfield 2:12.
- "Waiting for the miracle" - Leonard Cohen 7:43.
- Shooting Star - Bob Dylan 3:09.
- "Not Dark Yet" - Bob Dylan 6:30.
- "Slip Away" - Clarence Carter 2:32.
- "No Regrets" - Tom Rush 3:52.
- "Things Have Changed" Bob Dylan 5:10.
4.1. Welcome The checkout. (Кассе)
In the first weekend, wonder boys opened at No. 7 in the North American box office and has collected a total $ 5.8 million$1.253 in theaters. He went on to gross $19.393.557 domestically and $14.033.031 abroad around the world a total of $33.426.588. Based on budget for $ 55 million, the film was a box office bomb.
4.2. Welcome Critical response. (Критическая реакция)
The film received mostly positive reviews from critics. Rotten tomatoes reports that 82% "fresh" customers, based on 125 reviews, with an average rating of 7.2 / 10. The sites consensus States: "Michael Douglas and Tobey Maguire do wonders in this clever dark Comedy". On Metacritic the film has a 73 out of 100, based on 36 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
Roger Ebert, film critic from the Chicago sun-times, praised wonder boys as "the most accurate movie about life on campus that I can remember. This is exactly not because it captures intellectual debate or campus politics, but because he knows two things: 1 the students come and go, but the faculty actually lives there, and 2 many teachers to remain in graduate-student mode for decades". Emanuel levy of variety wrote, "movies frivolous touches and eccentric details emphasize its dry, measured wit and the power of Comedy to underscore serious ideas. Massively inventive, Wonder boys spiked with fresh, perverse humor that flows naturally from the unemotional game." A. O. Scott from the new York times wrote, "the problem is that all those involved seem to have agreed that it was a great idea for a movie, and pretty much remained the same".
In his review for time, Richard Corliss wrote, wonder boys reminds us of the distant era of the 70s, when bad movies were better: not stupid teen romps but sad, off-kilter studies of adults adrift. This is a rare example of that endangered species, the honorable failure". Entertainment weekly gave the film a "C" rating and Owen Gleiberman wrote, "Curtis Hanson may have wanted to make a movie that gleamed with humanity as much as Los Angeles was burning with anger, but he was so eager to get to us, like his characters that he didnt give them enough juice." Looking back in his review Salon.com critic Andrew OHehir felt that Hanson, "and cinematographer of Dante Oh, I capture Pittsburgh one of the most beautiful American cities, and by happy coincidence the underworld boho Academy with brilliant precision. If you went to a liberal arts College anywhere in the United States, whilegradys ramshackle house looks in the light of the huge crabs party shall cause vivid sense-memories".
4.3. Welcome Reissue. (Перевыпуск)
Many critics accused the preconditions of the initial advertising campaign for the film not finding a wide audience. The wall Street journal, Joe Morgenstern gave a high assessment to the work of Douglas in the movie, but criticized the poster, which showed the head of Douglas: "a raffishly eccentric role, and he has never been so attractive. Dont be scared of the mysterious movie poster, which makes him look like Michael J. Pollard." "Los Angeles times" Kenneth Turan and slammed the poster: "films ad poster brings Elmer Fudd to mind." Hanson said that the poster made Douglas look" like he was trying to be Robin Williams". In an interview with Amy Taubin, Hanson said: "the things that made Michael and I want to do the movie so badly were the reasons it was so difficult in the market. Since the films appear on the screen at once as much as you need for instant appeal. But wonder boys is easy, not reducible to a single image or a catchy advertising".
Hanson felt that the Studio played it safe with the original ad campaign. They also released it a week after nominations for the Oscar were announced and the Studio spent more money promoting the films of them that were nominated and not enough on wonder boys. The Studio pulled the film from theaters and quickly canceled the video release. Hanson and the films producer Scott Rudin lobbied to have it reissued. They have designed a new campaign including posters and a trailer for re-release that emphasized the ensemble cast.
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