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"Are you my pal? Mr. Scholarship Winner?"

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Todd Terry
"Are you my pal? Mr. Scholarship Winner?"
on Jul 10, 2009 at 6:04:06 pm

Not a question, problem, or complaint... just an observation.

Back when I was in college many moons ago, a friend who lived a couple of doors down had a VCR. I can assure you that made him quite the campus God in technologically deprived 1982.

Unfortuantely, he had only one copy of one movie. Caddyshack. Of course. I mean, what more does a college boy need, anyway? That movie played in Waylon's RCA Select-a-Vision at least five times a week. Whenever you would drop in, it was on.

Like many of you, I knew every word of dialog by heart. Still do.

I love that movie... but haven't seen it in forever. Even though I've owned a still-in-the-shrinkwrap unopened copy for years, I've never bothered to watch it. Didn't need to.

Well, it was on AMC last night, and I got sucked into watching it.

I was reminded of several things. How funny the writing was. What a comic genius Ted Knight was (whom we lost way too soon). How skinny Brian Doyle-Murray was. How completely stark-raving-mad gawd-awful the lighting was.

I had forgotten that last part.

The daytime exteriors in particular drove me nuts. Every single exterior looked to be heavily silked with about a zillion watts of hard-edged HMIs flatly blasting the actors from both sides of the camera. Even night shots (on the middle of a golf course, no less) were just blasted with full-blown in-your-face lighting, which had no apparent reason for coming from anywhere. Nothing even remotely natural. Or dramatic. Interiors were just flooded with a bunch of hard-edged instruments that looked like a 1970s soap opera. Only a couple of scenes (namely the night exteriors with Bill Murray's "Carl" character) had anything resembling any drama or creativity.

I looked up the DP... a fellow named Stevan Larner who had tons of credits (and lots of TV) going back to 1965. Taught film at UCLA. ASC member since 1983. He's been lighting up in the great beyond since 2005.

My, how times have changed.

But you know what? I didn't enjoy the movie any less. "How 'bout a Fresca?!"


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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Dennis Size
Re: "Are you my pal? Mr. Scholarship Winner?"
on Jul 10, 2009 at 11:29:20 pm

Way back in early days of lighting for theatre the philosphy was ..."bright, white, warm and washed out for comedy". Seems like that was the concept here.

DS



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Mark Suszko
Re: "Are you my pal? Mr. Scholarship Winner?"
on Jul 13, 2009 at 9:00:44 pm

Apparently, much like "Revenge of the Nerds", Caddyshack was written and performed under heavy drug usage and was a disorganized mess, saved in the reshoots and in post. If you sit down and try to analyze the story, it is appalling, and you want to beat the snot out of Danny. Funny how it created a genre formula.


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Mark Suszko
Re: "Are you my pal? Mr. Scholarship Winner?"
on Jul 13, 2009 at 9:02:04 pm

I still often do my Ted Knight/ Judge Smales voice when impatient:

"Welllll???? We're WAAAITINNGGG!!!!!!"

Perhaps the two most-quoted movies for guys: Godfather and Caddyshack.


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Bob Cole
Re: "Are you my pal? Mr. Scholarship Winner?"
on Jul 21, 2009 at 5:48:24 pm

[Mark Suszko] "performed under heavy drug usage and was a disorganized mess"

That would make the DP brilliant; he probably realized immediately that it could take 2-3 days to shoot a 2-minute scene. So he wrapped a studio around each exterior location and made the sunlight irrelevant.


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