My Photo

Welcome to Mannionville

  • Politics, art, movies, television, books, parenting, home repair, caffeine addiction---you name it, we blog it. Since 2004. Call for free estimate.

The Tip Jar

  • Please help keep this blog running strong with your donation or subscription
  • Contact by Snail Mail
    Lance Mannion
    PO Box 1197
    New Paltz, NY 12561

Save a Blogger From Begging...Buy Stuff

The one, the only

Sister Site

« Hawk attack | Main | Street scene. 1978. »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


Problem making it funny?
Yes, the Coens had that one too.

Fiddlin Bill

In short, the Cohens offer an existential answer, "drive," he said, "for christ's sake watch out where yr going." More specifically, of course they answer "the movies." After all, that's exactly what they do. And I'd opine that this is where becoming an adult today must lead. The sun does not revolve around the earth.

Shawn Stone

Laurence Laurentz is George Cukor or, maybe, Edmund Goulding. (Lubitsch always had producer power--he never would have been forced to use Hobie.) Fiennes is hilarious.


I really really wanted to like this film. I'm still trying to do so. As someone whose tv is permanently set to Turner Classic Movies (or so it seems), I am ready for a film that captures that 1950'ish studio system. Like you, I appreciated the homages to various movies. (My favourite was the "production for use" bit that was also featured in "His Girl Friday.")

But the movie needs to be more than these insider pieces.

One of the things that's getting in the way of my unabashed enthusiasm is that I'm unclear what the story is. A day in the life of Eddie Mannix? If so, why should we care about him? I love how you've connected some dots between the theme for this film and others from the Coen Brothers. I was sure they had a grand design in mind, but I kept wondering if I was expecting too much that they tell me a story. The context you've applied is really helpful, even if it doesn't overcome the fuzzy plot. The movie has heart. It just doesn't have a backbone.

My other struggle is the Hobie Doyle character. All the other characters had recognizable counterparts---Scarlett Johansson as Esther Williams, Channing Tatum as Gene Kelly, et al. But the movies referenced for the Doyle character seemed more early Gary Cooper than Roy Rogers...and that anachronism kept me from fully suspending my disbelief.

Thanks for (finally) posting this review. It made me think about the film in some new ways and makes me want to take another look.

Lance Mannion

Shawn, I can see Cukor. I've also read that some people thinks he's Vincente Minnelli, even though Minnelli had made his name directing color musicals and was directing An American in Paris at the time. But it's the Christopher Lambert character who's directing the Gene Kelly musical and I don't see Lambert's character as a Europeanized Minnelli. I went with Lubitsch, who was actually dead by 1951, because of the alliteration of the last names and because the movie Laurentz and Hobie are making is a black and white comedy that looks like a throwback to the 30s and because he stands up to Mannix by reminding him that the name Laurentz on a picture means something---that struck me as an allusion to "the Lubitsch Touch." But like I said, the Coens weren't being sticklers, they mashed up people, movies, and events, and half the fun is trying to figure out who's who and what's what.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Data Analysis

  • Data Analysis

Movies, Music, Books, Kindles, and more


May 2018

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31    

For All Your Laundry Needs

In Case of Typepad Emergency Break Glass

Be Smart, Buy Books

Blog powered by Typepad