An appreciation of "That Thing You Do!"

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by sloaches, Dec 25, 2014.

  1. kouzie

    kouzie Forum Resident

    Location:
    Batavia, IL
    The scene where everyone hears the song on the radio for the first time is one of my favorite scenes of all time. I also think the title song is a perfect power pop song and could totally be have been a hit around that time.
     
  2. modrevolve

    modrevolve Forum Resident

    Still get choked up by it

    [/QUOTE]The scene where everyone hears the song on the radio for the first time is one of my favorite scenes of all time. I also think the title song is a perfect power pop song and could totally be have been a hit around that time.[/QUOTE]
     
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  3. Splungeworthy

    Splungeworthy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Jersey Shore
    That's what unbridled joy looks like. My favorite scene as well.
     
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  4. troggy

    troggy Forum Resident

    Location:
    southern Illinois
    It's been playing on NDNet Movies lately. That's channel 566 on DirecTV. It's been released at least four times to VHS/DVD/BluRay.
     
  5. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    I know that Tom Hanks was crushed when the film did not do well commercially in theaters. But I would bet he's pleased that the film lives on in home video and is still highly-regarded by fans. I personally think the film has some flaws, and it's a tough watch in sections because it's got a downer ending, but at the same time I think it has terrific performances, good songs, and it captures the era very well.
     
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  6. Fullbug

    Fullbug Forum Resident

    Not nearly enough footage of Cap'n Geech and the Shrimp Shack Shooters.
     
  7. rhubarb9999

    rhubarb9999 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Lots of good stuff in the extended version.
     
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  8. geoffr

    geoffr Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Lamar, the hotel guy, gives me the creeps.
     
  9. sixtiesstereo

    sixtiesstereo Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Anyone who hasn't seen the extended version has missed a LOT. Many additional scenes of
    Tina (Charlize Theron) plus the implied reveal that Mr. White (Tom Hanks) is gay (Howie Long is his
    "friend" ) as he is going out for the night with him.
    [​IMG]

    This web page has extensive analysis of the differences in the extended version with
    many pictures. Some fascinating stuff.
    That Thing You Do! (Comparison: Theatrical Version - Director's Cut) - Movie-Censorship.com »
     
  10. PhilBorder

    PhilBorder Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sheboygan, WI
    IDK that the ending is a complete downer. I believe his intention was simply to tell a representative story of a one hit wonder. They never were going to be more than that, and I think the more rationale members were glad they had that moment in the spotlight. And the drummer walked away with Liv Tyler!
     
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  11. Oatsdad

    Oatsdad Oat, Biscuits and Abbie: Best Dogs Ever

    Location:
    Alexandria VA
    Yeah, it's not a big old perky ending where the band goes out on top but I also wouldn't say it's a downer. It's a look at some guys who briefly hit it big and then moved on with their lives.

    I'm glad they left one character in the music business, as I think that made it more realistic. Woulda seemed odd if they all just went back to "day jobs" after those experiences.

    Maybe we need a sequel where the Oneders reunite for some oldies tour! :)
     
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  12. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    It's in the eye of the beholder, but I think the movie was always intended to have a downbeat ending where they fall apart and scatter at the end... which is what happened to countless hundreds of one-hit-wonder artists of the 1960s and 1970s. At the time the movie came out and it was being discussed on some of the early web forums & discussion groups, I can recall commenting that it was interesting how the end titles revealed that the egotistical a**hole lead singer became much more successful on his own, while the nice-guy drummer basically became a studio session player and jazz performer. And I said, "this accurately reflects quite a few real-life groups from that period."

    I think the second reason why the movie wasn't commercially successful is because it was about a fictitious 1960s rock group, and there isn't a big audience for this subject, not even 20 years ago. There's been a surprising number of 1960s music movie failures in the last 10-15 years; Get On Up from 2014 was a good example, where it didn't even make half the money it would need to break even. I was a big fan of Walk Hard, the 1960s/1970s music spoof movie (and I even worked on it for a week or so), but it was a big flop. The Elvis lookalike movie The Identical was an enormous bomb, costing $16M and making only about $3 million. A couple of exceptional successes for music bio films over the years would include Walk the Line, Ray, and Love & Mercy, all of which were relatively low-budget but made a reasonable profit. I would bet an accurate film on the life of Aretha Franklin would also make money.
     
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  13. Hexwood

    Hexwood Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    I watched this on the TV a few weeks ago.

    Liv Tyler :love:
     
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  14. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    I watched the extended version again last night. I felt, the first time, that it was much better watching it this way. Upon a second viewing, I have to agree the theater version is probably the better flowing film, but you would definitely miss out on a lot of plot lines if you were unaware of the longer version.
     
  15. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host

    Really, the "Director's Cut" is harmful to the movie. I mean, for those of us who love the film, seeing the deleted scenes once is interesting but inserted into the movie, the pace is killed, it actually harms the movie in my opinion. The original release version is really the way to go, I think.
     
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  16. troggy

    troggy Forum Resident

    Location:
    southern Illinois
    I don't disagree, although a couple of the deleted scenes are so good, I love seeing them as part of the movie.

    The scene early on, where the band is practicing in the garage and Jimmy and Lenny are arguing over whether they should play something like the Beatles would, is a really good scene.

    I also love the scene at the TV show where Guy asks if the chimp can really play the bass, as he's looking for his own bass player.
     
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  17. Oatsdad

    Oatsdad Oat, Biscuits and Abbie: Best Dogs Ever

    Location:
    Alexandria VA
    Yup. As I said in my review:

    "As a fan of Thing, I think it’s fun to check out all this cut footage. However, I don’t plan to watch the extended version of the film a second time. The theatrical cut already dragged a bit during its second half, and 147 minutes is a looooong running time for a light comedy like this. It’s cool that we can view the alternate Thing, but I strongly prefer the theatrical cut. "
     
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  18. sixtiesstereo

    sixtiesstereo Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wisconsin
    As I mentioned in my earlier post, I feel everyone should see the extended "director's cut"
    at least once to fill out the story. But I completely agree that the theatrical version is a much
    better cut version and is great the way it is.
    One of the cuts in the original I love is when Lenny is being interviewed at the fair,
    talking about the "pigging contest", says "I'm going to win that ribbon" and immediately
    cuts to them doing "Dance With Me Tonight" ("C'mon pretty baby..."), the best song in the
    film. In the extended version, there are one or two other scenes before the song, which ruins
    the high energy and excitement of the opening of the song......
     
  19. sloaches

    sloaches Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Austin Texas
    I found a pretty cool fan letter response that Tom Hanks wrote. He mentions TTYD, and his favorite songs in particular.

    HANX »
     
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  20. Tim S

    Tim S Forum Resident

    Location:
    East Tennessee
    I haven't seen the extended cut, but I want to. Most say it's inferior to the regular cut, but I'm curious.

    My favorite moment in the movie is very brief, but I just love it. It happens during the "Dance with me tonight" performance as the band kicks it up a notch:

    [​IMG]
     
  21. JamieC

    JamieC Forum Resident

    Location:
    Detroit Mi USA
    [​IMG]
     
  22. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    It's funny that I didn't feel that way at all the first time I saw the extended cut, but I think you nailed it. As a huge fan of the film (and the downtown scenes were filmed near where I lived, in downtown Orange, CA, an area I assume you are likely familiar with as I believe you reside in the LA area?) I think I was so fascinated with the "new" clips it blinded me to how it was dragging the flow of the film down. When I watched it again a few nights ago, it was like night and day compared to the first viewing, so I totally agree with you. It did feel very disjointed when I wasn't so focused on the actual footage that wasn't new to me on the second viewing. A great sounding film as well. I feel bad for Tom that he was so disappointed with it's performance. It is a very well done film, which to me says a lot of work and effort was put into it. Sometimes a film just doesn't find an audience or is simply released at the wrong time. Which is what is so fantastic about DVD's and the ability to put together a decent home theater.
     
  23. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    Yup! I would have totally disagreed with you until I watched the extended version a second time this week. It really does interrupt the flow of the film dramatically, but it was a fascinating way to see it once. I doubt I will ever watch it that way again. I now really respect the job of whoever has to make those decisions. Had to be painful to cut some of those scenes but it made the fiml so much better.
     
  24. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Location:
    Hollywood, USA
    I was working on either Oklahoma or Carousel for Fox at the time That Thing You Do was being released, and I asked our Fox studio contact, "hey, would you mind letting me do the mastering on That Thing You Do? That looks like a terrific film." And he shook his head and said, "oh, no -- that movie's gonna be a bomb. Tom Hanks doesn't even want to supervise. We're just gonna knock it out and hope it makes a little money on home video. We need you do do something more worthwhile." So to the Fox distribution guy, the movie was like a throwaway. Very sad.
     
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  25. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host

    It probably tested weak. I hate when they test.
     
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