The Many Saints Of Newark (no spoilers yet)

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  • Cyfress
    replied
    As someone who knew kids who had fathers who were made members or associates of the Philly mob, AJ was one sopping wet [email protected] The kids I knew were pretty frigin crazy and had no fear of anything. Yes, more than half are dead now but AJ’s character was pretty soft as sons to mob bosses go.

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  • Bono
    replied
    We can all agree AJ died though right???

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  • Satriales
    replied
    Originally posted by Bono View Post
    Also I think the ending of the Saints, is pretty clearly designed to give us the answer to the Sopranos finale. I thought it was pretty clear back then (people still arguing over it which is what makes it fun to me!), but the parallels seem clear to me.

    How one character met their end in the movie, is pretty much the same way another character in the tv show met their end (off screen) in my mind.

    Now I want onion rings.
    You really want to do this to me? 😆

    For all of the alleged breakdowns - and some are quite good and interesting and compelling - I've never bought it.

    I know Chase said "the death scene" or whatever a few years ago, but that read like a slip of the tongue. And sure I know Taylor thinks he was shot. And people also think that Chase saying "it's all there" means "the clues are there that he's dead" but I took that as having a very different meaning. "It's all there" literally just means, everything that happened, happened. It's in the text. There is NOTHING else. He doesn't live but he doesn't die either. That doesn't matter. The story is done. And absolutely, that WILL happen at some point. But it isn't there and then, necessarily. It is certainly meant to evoke that and of course I'm well aware of all the Sopranos Home Movies stuff. But I don't see it and I don't think Chase would ever do what people suggest in that final scene. But I think it is waaaay more of an optimistic (and not nihilistic) ending than people read into it.

    Chase's breakdown of the final scene for the DGA is awesome. And to me the most definitive rebuke to the death truthers.
    https://www.dga.org/Craft/DGAQ/All-A...-Sopranos.aspx

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  • Bono
    replied
    Also I think the ending of the Saints, is pretty clearly designed to give us the answer to the Sopranos finale. I thought it was pretty clear back then (people still arguing over it which is what makes it fun to me!), but the parallels seem clear to me.

    How one character met their end in the movie, is pretty much the same way another character in the tv show met their end (off screen) in my mind.

    Now I want onion rings.

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  • zetiago
    replied
    I've probably watched ten episodes of the show, spread out over twenty years. I've read more about it than I've actually seen.

    I don't know what you call Many Saints, but to me it's not a movie in the narrative cinema sense of the word. It's like an extended flashback or a two-hour special prequel episode. It doesn't stand on its own.

    There was an interview with Brian Cox of Succession in this Sunday's NY Times Magazine and one of the things he loves about television is it's all middle or second act - not sure what term he actually used. Many Saints to me is all middle/second act as well.

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  • JoeBanks
    replied
    Originally posted by JeffLowell View Post
    Also, young Tony talking to the school counselor seemed like an attempt at establishing an early therapy session for him (with an authoritative woman who recognized the importance of his mother's role!).
    Good point. Probably would have landed harder with me if I'd gone to see it in the theaters. Also, it felt like Vera F. (intentionally?) was bringing as much or more Edie Falco to her Livia as Nancy Marchand, maybe playing up the Odepial complex subplot?

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  • Satriales
    replied
    Originally posted by Bono View Post

    Well those "therapy sessions"came in jail visiting with his dad's brother who I still don't know was real or in his head. I'm 99% real, but if he was just having fake conversations out of guilt that would make a lot of sense too. I'm not a big enough Sopranos fan to know if that was a character we knew existed before this movie.
    It could have been an interesting creative choice. One I certainly would be tempted by. But Chrissy said in the open that his grandfather had a brother.

    I thought the stuff with Vera (who was amazing) and the counselor was definitely the most powerful part of the movie.

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  • Satriales
    replied
    Statute of limitations is up. My thoughts:

    - I generally like V.O. especially if it is done well (duh) and has a conceit. (ie: Gordie Lachance is writing a book) In this case, I thought this was ill-conceived, or at the very least, poorly executed. I would have just had Chrissy narrating it, we don't need to know or see that he is dead. THEN the reveal at the end is - he's GOING to hell. I thought him narrating from hell was comical. I mean...hell didn't seem so bad, right?

    - The first half hour was not great. Ray Liotta 1 sounded like Artie Lange. Fortunately, #2 was a much more subdued performance. Everything after that, I really enjoyed.

    - I enjoyed the Leslie Odom stuff but it feels to me that the backdrop of the Newark riots was just something that Chase got in his head and couldn't get away from. I didn't find it all that necessary or illuminating.

    - One of the things I thought should have been leaned into more was the idea of Dickie Moltisanti the legend. And that's how Tony always referred to him in the series. But when I see Dickie now, that term strikes me in a very different way. Sure he was cool and a badazz. But he was also sad and pathetic. It's a "legend" as in a story, a tall tale - something we tell ourselves and each other to make things greater than they were, to soften the rough edges. To that end, I wanted Tony to see Richie getting shot and maybe Junior says something offhandedly at the funeral - certainly not copping to it, but saying how he killed Giuseppina or whatever. Because I think you then give more weight to the story Tony tells Chrissy in the series about his father, and we go back to the necessity of these legends we tell.

    - Several of the easter eggs/callbacks I hated. I liked that the shooting through Livia's hair was different than recounted, because memory and familial games of telephone are like that. But going to "your sister's c***" twice was a bit much. Once would have been good. The "varsity athlete" line was too overt. I loved that they talked about Mr. Piacosta playing football. (he of the wonderful "inarticulate Italian noises" meme)

    - Bernthal felt too cool for Johnny Boy, IMO. Michael Gandolfini was awesome. The way he was eating after Johnny Boy got out was scary good.

    - I thought the music choices were less inspired than the series. It's the Summer of Love and you really go with Scott Mckenzie's "San Francisco?" Meh. I did like I Am I Said and Astral Weeks when Richie kills Giuseppina was awesome. Which would make it the fourth (by my count) epic use of Van Morrison in Sopranosverse. Gloria (by Them, feat Van) at the end of Pine Barrens. Glad Tidings as a motif throughout All Due Respect when Tony B gets it in the S5 finale, and of course Comfortably Numb from Live at the Wall by way of the Departed soundtrack (in a Vera Farmiga sex scene, no less) when Chrissy buys it in Kennedy and Heidi. But I REALLY loved Whatever Happened To Christmas? One of the great, sad Frank songs. I was so annoyed with Tony being in Holsten's and it was all too obvious but then that song started and I was like "ok, fine."

    - The pinky swear. My god. No. Just no.

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  • JeffLowell
    replied
    Also, young Tony talking to the school counselor seemed like an attempt at establishing an early therapy session for him (with an authoritative woman who recognized the importance of his mother's role!).

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  • Bono
    replied
    Originally posted by JoeBanks View Post
    It was fine I guess. Better than I expected based on some reviews but not quite as good as I would have hoped given it's a David Chase joint. Feels on firmer dramatic ground when it's focused on Dickie M. and his moves than also bringing in younger versions of the series regulars (ooftah). Without spoiling, not a fan at all of the final twist, which totally undermines a great episode of the show.

    Also, having a Melfi-less plot also really makes you appreciate how brilliant that framing device was, to remind us that for all the lip service guys like Tony paid to the so-called rules of "this thing of ours," they rarely hesitated to break them when the need arose. Here, it's all the sociopathy without any of the context that Tony's sessions with Melfi provided (but obviously not really an option given the time period)
    Well those "therapy sessions"came in jail visiting with his dad's brother who I still don't know was real or in his head. I'm 99% real, but if he was just having fake conversations out of guilt that would make a lot of sense too. I'm not a big enough Sopranos fan to know if that was a character we knew existed before this movie.

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  • JoeBanks
    replied
    It was fine I guess. Better than I expected based on some reviews but not quite as good as I would have hoped given it's a David Chase joint. Feels on firmer dramatic ground when it's focused on Dickie M. and his moves than also bringing in younger versions of the series regulars (ooftah). Without spoiling, not a fan at all of the final twist, which totally undermines a great episode of the show.

    Also, having a Melfi-less plot also really makes you appreciate how brilliant that framing device was, to remind us that for all the lip service guys like Tony paid to the so-called rules of "this thing of ours," they rarely hesitated to break them when the need arose. Here, it's all the sociopathy without any of the context that Tony's sessions with Melfi provided (but obviously not really an option given the time period)

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  • Bono
    replied
    I finished it. It really picked up for me halfway through. I wanted it to be a mini-series though. It was too short for what it was. I expect them to make 2 more of these.

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  • Bono
    replied
    My wife's best friend's lived in Nutley, NJ. We visited them a lot to go to their pool. I'm in the pool and I look up. And Frank Vincent is staring at me. The same way he looks at people before he kills them with a baseball bat. I don't think he was acting. I think that was just him. I was literally scared. I peed the pool.

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  • Satriales
    replied
    Originally posted by Bono View Post

    Also maybe the quirks is what makes something a piece of art right? So if all the actors were perfection to me, maybe it would be less The Sopranos, you know? My main point is I rewatched the whole series and I was struck by many things, mostly how amazing James Gandolfini was. I mean people say it -- but to me it's like Archie Bunker level of -- this one guy is holding this whole crazy idea together. If he wasn't in this, this would fall apart. Looking back, we go "No one else could play that part" but I don't think that's true for 95% of roles. I mean we can't imagine anyone else now. But there is a special role meets the right person and it's just pure magic. And that was Tony Soprano and James G. Honestly, maybe he was so good that he made other people seem like bad actors to me in comparison.




    Sure, it’s one of the two or three greatest TV performances ever. But I don’t think it overshadows the incredible depth of actors who used the specificity of the writing to create such memorable characters.

    It’s the deepest bench in TV history, IMO. Third tier roles like Rosalie Aprile, Artie Bucco, Little Carmine all sing because the right person was in the right role and they were impeccably written characters with great neuroses and layers.

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  • Bono
    replied
    Originally posted by Satriales View Post


    I think it’s basically an unmatched American piece of art. Like Kind Of Blue and To Kill A Mockingbird level of quality and significance.
    Also maybe the quirks is what makes something a piece of art right? So if all the actors were perfection to me, maybe it would be less The Sopranos, you know? My main point is I rewatched the whole series and I was struck by many things, mostly how amazing James Gandolfini was. I mean people say it -- but to me it's like Archie Bunker level of -- this one guy is holding this whole crazy idea together. If he wasn't in this, this would fall apart. Looking back, we go "No one else could play that part" but I don't think that's true for 95% of roles. I mean we can't imagine anyone else now. But there is a special role meets the right person and it's just pure magic. And that was Tony Soprano and James G. Honestly, maybe he was so good that he made other people seem like bad actors to me in comparison.





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