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 Posted:   Jul 31, 2013 - 7:08 PM   
 By:   neotrinity   (Member)



Am just about to finally katch up with this klassic.



Any komments from those not so previously culturally-deprived? embarrassment

 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2013 - 7:38 PM   
 By:   Storyteller   (Member)

It's in my top 10 greatest films ever made list.

I discovered the film through a small town book store owner who lent me his copy recorded off of TV. It was something of a profound moment as it changed the way I look at film forever.

I also find it one of the best representations of a false profit (Mitchum) Vs. a true believer (Lillian Gish). The lack of Jesus' name sung by "the preacher" throughout but included by Gish is only one example of such themes.

 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2013 - 7:53 PM   
 By:   Mark R. Y.   (Member)

Laughton and his crew displayed a remarkable, sometimes hallucinatory, visual flair. I wish he had directed more features than this. HUNTER is truly one of the great American films. As Storyteller indicated, Mitchum and Gish create a formidable clash of wills.

 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2013 - 8:29 PM   
 By:   nuts_score   (Member)

Let me put it simply: this is my favorite.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2013 - 9:43 PM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

I posted the information below in 2003 here at FSM. I'll post the URL in a moment.
Please note that if you love this film, our own savvy, intelligent member, Preston Neal
Jones, wrote a great book about this movie. You can still get it through Amazon.


In 2003 I wrote:


I just noted Preston’s reference to his book in the Red River thread, and I decided to add a
wee bit of free press for this fine book.

All right you illiterate scurvy knaves, if you haven’t read our board poster Preston Neal
Jones’ book Heaven and Hell To Play With: The filming of THE NIGHT OF THE
HUNTER, you are absolutely wallowing in ignorance.

Seriously Preston and others, this was a fine read for me. I watched the movie several
years ago because I wanted to hear the music, and I thought that it was one weird movie.
I really didn’t get it. Why the odd angles? Why the unusual lighting? Why the unique
settings? (Okay, I also wanted to know why Mitchum wouldn’t have sex with Shelly
Winters.) Anyhow, I appreciated my second viewing of the film a lot more after reading
Preston’s book. The art and craft and purpose of the movie finally made sense when I
understood the director’s vision for the movie.

You get a tremendous amount of insight into all the key characters thanks to the unique
narrative style of this book, to the information from the interviews, and to Preston’s
commentaries. What a shame that this movie wasn’t a hit at the box-office and that we
lost Laughton before he could direct another movie.

If anything in the book surprised me, it was Cortez. (Cinematographer) I couldn’t believe
that he wanted to film this movie in color. So much of the film’s ambiance and mood
seemed to me to emanate from it being filmed in black and white.

Anyway gang, support a fellow board member and do some illuminating reading.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2013 - 9:44 PM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=11897&forumID=1&archive=1

Here is our discussion of Preston's book and movie.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2013 - 10:22 PM   
 By:   neotrinity   (Member)





smile A Transcendent Thank U Arc of Joan for that gobsmacking bit of enlightenment!

Way to goooooo, cool Pres!!!!!! cool

wink

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 1, 2013 - 8:01 AM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

Neo, thanks for posting the cover of Preston's book. Great!! I really didn't understand so many aspects of the movie until I read Preston's book. Also, it is nice to acknowledge an author in our own FSM ranks.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 3, 2013 - 5:59 PM   
 By:   neotrinity   (Member)



Joan, it's one of those thoroughly involving films that stay with you long after its images have already cemented themselves inside your emotional and psychological frame for rich reference, and we suspect - nay, we Know - it'd take more than a couple of viewings to even begin to appreciate what's below the tip of its already absorbing dramatic iceberg.



We can't wait to obtain a copy of Meester Jones' epic tome of cinematic truth so as to behold a fascinating glimpse of what went on behind the scenes before it was so indelibly transferred onto it.



And your sharing the esteemed Stanley Cortez initially was in favor of filiming it in color is a revelation that really rocks! Much as we automatically favor the hues of reality to the more metaphorical black and white (since the world is made up of an endless array of hues - not just two. Antiquated and esthetically barbaric of us, we know, but what of it?) there's NO way this film's atmospheric authority would've been the same in anything other than the way it was shot.



Mr. Mitchum's unsentimental, ungranulated perf is particularly of note - it's a brave and bold risk he treats without a scent of 'likability' the commitment is that defined.



There are so many nightmarish, beautifully surreal and etherally eerie sequences - from the children's voyage down-stream punctuated by the lovely lullabye whilst animals observe the odyssey from start to finish - but few match the EXTRAORDINARY sequence with Shelley Winters - which we won't dare depict - that's gotta be one of the most haunting images Evah!



Last but far from least is the mighty contribution of Walter Schumann's heavenly horrific music - alternating between crashing catastrophe to gentle harmonies, it anchors the proceedings with understated uniqueness.

(Hopefully) to be continued ... ?

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2013 - 4:06 PM   
 By:   Preston Neal Jones   (Member)

Well, what a pleasantly surprising thread upon which to stumble on a Monday afternoon!

I'll just say a few things for the moment: If at all possible, see the film in a theater. Barring that, the Criterion DVD Blu Ray is the way to go, and includes among other goodies a great commentary track by myself and three others, plus Bob Gitt's matchless documentary of highlights from the film's out-takes. Another great book about HUNTER is by my friend and colleague Jeffrey Couchman, THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER: BIOGRAPHY OF A FILM. But don't even look at the cover until you've seen the film first!

BTW, that photo of Schumann hardly looks like him to me. And is that Fritz Lang with Stanley Cortez?

Thanks for all your kind words, Joan! And everybody else!

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2013 - 4:26 PM   
 By:   arthur grant   (Member)

Well, what a pleasantly surprising thread upon which to stumble on a Monday afternoon!

I'll just say a few things for the moment: If at all possible, see the film in a theater. Barring that, the Criterion DVD Blu Ray is the way to go, and includes among other goodies a great commentary track by myself and three others, plus Bob Gitt's matchless documentary of highlights from the film's out-takes. Another great book about HUNTER is by my friend and colleague Jeffrey Couchman, THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER: DIARY OF A FILM. But don't even look at the cover until you've seen the film first!

BTW, that photo of Schumann hardly looks like him to me. And is that Fritz Lang with Stanley Cortez?

Thanks for all your kind words, Joan! And everybody else!


Preston,

Just letting you know that you are interviewed on the Blu Ray recently released in Australia! I'm sure the extras are more on the Criterion release but thought you'd be pleased about your appearance "down under."

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 6, 2013 - 4:49 PM   
 By:   Preston Neal Jones   (Member)

Arthur, you old son of a sea cook! Great hearing from you.

I'm a little confused -- it sounds as if some outfit has licensed the Criterion double disc set and released it under their own name down under...?

 
 Posted:   Aug 8, 2013 - 10:34 AM   
 By:   BornOfAJackal   (Member)

This movie depicts the seedy resentment and thirst for violence that hides behind much of American Protestantism, yet it also portrays the most committed and compassionate expression of it. A true "American Great."

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 8, 2013 - 4:26 PM   
 By:   arthur grant   (Member)

Arthur, you old son of a sea cook! Great hearing from you.

I'm a little confused -- it sounds as if some outfit has licensed the Criterion double disc set and released it under their own name down under...?


Lol...(sea cook and a lawyer... how did you know?)

Yes, the BLU RAY is legitimately licensed from MGM here by a company called Shock DVD. I'm sure their rights only pertain to Australia. It is a single disc however so I'm sure the extras are far less than what are on the Criterion set. (It's also much cheaper). I have not listened to the commentary track yet but I have watched the Blu Ray and a short interview with you and I forget who else. The transfer 166:1 is absolutely stunning. I have not seen the Criterion Blu Ray but I'm almost positive they've used the same transfer. It is so beautiful by the time it reached the part where Gish and Mitchum sing together, tears were running down my face. I have seen this film several times in the theatre, once I believe after it was restored at the L.A. County Art Museum but this Blu Ray for me beats all. To me this film's story represents the ultimate clash of good vs. evil as seen through the eyes of a child. Shock has also released (dumped?) some Blu Rays on the market here of other notable films again all legitimate beautiful transfers some available on this format for the first time with no announcements whatsoever including THE BOSTON STRANGLER, MAN OF THE WEST and LIFEBOAT!

On a personal note could I please ask you to contact me at arthur@thecinemacafe.com ? I'd like to get your e-mail address, and please check out thecinemacafe.com (website). There's a few posts related to THE SWIMMER I'm hoping you'll like.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 8, 2013 - 8:13 PM   
 By:   Preston Neal Jones   (Member)

The Criterion definitely uses the restoration executed by Bob Gitt at UCLA. MGM had done its own restoration, but the UCLA is the real McCoy. The biggest and best extra n Criterion is Bob Gitt's documentary presenting a couple of hors of highlights from the out-takes. I hope you'll enjoy the commentary track I did with second unit director Terry Sanders, critic/historian F.X. Feeney and Bob Gitt. I'm very proud of how we kept te ball in play for the full 93 minutes, packing the soundtrack with solid information.

 
 Posted:   Aug 11, 2013 - 5:22 AM   
 By:   Storyteller   (Member)

Cool interview with Mitchum on "Hunter".

 
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