"Elvis" (2022) - Baz Luhrmann Film Reviews/Discussion!

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by EternalReturn, Feb 14, 2022.

  1. Spencer R

    Spencer R Forum Resident

    Location:
    Oxford, MS
    Are your in-laws and Andreas Cornelis van Kuijk the same person? As @chervokas has noted, while it as a well-known phenomenon that a non-native English speaker’s “foreign” accent may slip out in moments of excitement or passion, by all accounts and every piece of information we have, “Col. Tom Parker” did not speak with a thick Dutch accent in his day-to-day life managing Elvis Presley. If you watch this interview from the end of his life, it’s possible to hear a tiny hint of vowel sounds being just a bit “off” for a native English speaker, but he certainly is not speaking in a noticeable, heavy, obvious foreign accent.

     
  2. D-rock

    D-rock Senior Member

    Location:
    Columbus, Ohio
    Well isn't he just a lovely fella ... :rolleyes:
     
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  3. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brookings, Oregon
    This video demonstrates the problem with trying to compare Parker's speech/accent near the end of his life after he has lived in the United States for over 80 consecutive years without leaving the country. Do you really think he talked this way in the 1950's or even the 1960's? I had a best friend who was born in the United States and spent his young childhood here for years, until he took a summer trip for three months and came back with a full Australian accent that was hard for him to shake and he wasn't even born there, Lol. When someone says it is a factual inaccuracy for Parker to have a consistently heavy accent in the movie, I find that very perplexing. We just don't know exactly how Parker sounded for many years, so I think the liberties that Hanks and Baz took were quite plausible and work well within the nature of Parker's sketchy character.
     
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  4. artfromtex

    artfromtex Honky Tonkin' Metal-Head

    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    Has anyone noticed that Austin Butler's speaking voice is different after being Elvis for over two years? He has certainly absorbed some linguistic traits from The King.
     
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  5. Myke

    Myke Rock Geezer

    From Billy Stanley :

    " I'm seeing a lot of comments and hearing a lot of questions about some people not being mentioned or portraited in the new movie. I can't speak for everyone else, but here are my thoughts on that.
    I've never been mentioned or shown in any movie about Elvis. That doesn't bother me. Why should it? I don't need a movie to validate me. I had my time with Elvis, 17 years to be exact. I had great times growing up with Elvis. I'm thankful I was in his life, and he was in mine. I'm secure in my relationship with him.
    In closing, I encourage all of Elvis' fans to go see this movie. Go with an open mind and an open heart. It's only a movie. Let it entertain you and forget all the distractions. Liz and I are excited to see it. We know it's not going to be 100% accurate, no movie really is. We just want to see how Elvis is treated in the film. To us, that's all that really matters. "

    Dee Presley bought a condo near us in Madison, Tennessee ( both of us near the former office of Colonel btw ), and after enrolling Billy's daughter in the daycare my son attended, got a job as a daycare worker there.
    Quite a spectacle in her leopard-skin pants, and big Cadillac parked outside.
    I'll always remember my son feeling bad for Billy's daughter as the cruelty of children making "fat Elvis" jokes made her cry.
    Also sad in it's own way, Dee trying to get us parents to sign a petition rezoning the elementary school the kids were headed for ( she thought the school beneath her ), and not being able to hold the parent's attention past an endless flow of " Elvis questions." :laugh:
     
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  6. Chris DeVoe

    Chris DeVoe 3 months since last false death report!

    To quote her accurately, she said he "didn't have an accent" she didn't include the qualifiers you did. Of course everybody has an accent, and accents that are similar to your own will sound less like an accent to you.

    I just carefully listen to that 1956 clip, and it definitely sounds like a performance, that he was playing the part of a "good old boy." I'd like to hear the private tapes that Hanks used as his study material.
     
  7. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    I'm not sure what you mean here. I'm not saying that Hanks is doing an inaccurate Dutch accent. I'm saying that Colonel Tom Parker did not have a heavy, consistent Dutch accent. And that is based on the available auditory evidence and the direct statements of people who knew Parker. Why would Priscilla Presley say that Parker didn't have an accent and that it was an artistic choice by Hanks, if that was untrue?

    I can understand defending the accent as an artistic choice... I recall someone speculating earlier that Hanks did it because his own voice is so familiar to audiences and he wanted to immerse himself in the character. That's entirely plausible and arguably a good artistic decision. But what I can't understand is trying to suggest the accent is an accurate depiction of how the Colonel actually spoke, when the evidence shows it is not. I know it seems like I'm making a big deal about this, but it's just puzzling to me. It's like if you were telling me that maybe the film's use of "Trouble" in 1956 is not anachronous, and that it probably was written two years earlier than all the reference books say. I have no problem with filmmakers and actors taking little creative liberties like these, but I do not understand outright denial that they are creative liberties.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2022
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  8. Speculation, but I can’t imagine having a foreign accent in the South / with clients based in the South (pre-Elvis) would have been seen in a positive light in that era, and most-likely would have been seen as a liability. So I can understand why The Colonel hid it. In The Colonel’s case, follow the $.
     
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  9. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Steve, did you listen to the clip of the Colonel from 1956? I don't any notable difference in his voice then and in the later-in-life interviews.

    And again, why would Priscilla say he did not have an accent and that it was an artistic choice by Hanks, if that wasn't true? She certainly must have talked to Colonel in many different types of situations, including private conversations when his guard was down or when he was relaxed or upset.

    It seems possible the accent slipped out sometimes, but he certainly didn't speak with an accent all the time. And (correct me if I'm wrong) the film does show him with a strong accent all the time. So that isn't accurate. The film has taken some liberties with facts in other areas for narrative reasons, and this is just another instance of that. And there's nothing wrong with that. I'm not intending to attack the film by observing it.
     
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  10. artfromtex

    artfromtex Honky Tonkin' Metal-Head

    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    I love Billy.
     
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  11. GillyT

    GillyT Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wellies, N.Z
    Yes I've seen the interview already. Of course he didn't speak with a Dutch accent in his day to day life. The fact that he does in the film illustrates a greater truth that the Colonel wore a mask to conceal his true identity. He's talking to us, the audience as Andreas van Kuijk, with the mask off. That's my entirely subjective interpretation of this piece of art. It doesn't have to be yours.

    (Edit) Once the film got cracking, I didn't notice the accent at all.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2022
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  12. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brookings, Oregon
    I think you are right on the money, Shawn. It is the only explanation that can explain everything with the accent that comes and goes.

    Edit:
    @GillyT basically says the same thing in her post above mine.
     
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  13. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Yep, and since Priscilla is not Dutch, the fact that she perceived no accent tells us he must not have ever displayed much of one when he talked to her.

    What it comes down to for me is that (correct me if I'm wrong) the film shows him with a strong accent all the time, and we know that isn't true, even if he might possibly have had more of one in private sometimes than he did in public.

    I hope my earlier post didn't come off as argumentative or too strident, btw. That wasn't my intent, although I sometimes fail at conveying my intended tone in discussions like this. At any rate, my point is that if you all were defending the accent as an artistic choice, I'd say nothing. But we know it's historically inaccurate to some degree, and the suggestion that it's not is puzzling to me.
     
  14. czeskleba

    czeskleba Senior Member

    Location:
    Seattle
    Yes, that's what I was talking about above. The accent is entirely defensible as an artistic choice, and this is a reasonable analysis of why Hanks might have decided to use it.
     
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  15. GillyT

    GillyT Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wellies, N.Z
    A few words on the film which I saw last night. I'm struggling to string two words together today. I was upset by the financial abuse theme which cut too close to home to write about and unexpectedly impacted me the most. The performances are spectacular as reported by others. I got very caught up in the 1970 (depicted as 1969) rehearsals. If this footage actually exists...Wow is all I can say. There are some flaws of course but the film does an excellent job of humanising Elvis and placing the fluctuations of his career at the centre of the story and showing how they impacted his life. Not the other way around.

    The difficult thing as an Elvis fan is to just sit back and enjoy the ride. Much easier said than done.

    The cinema was packed. A wide range of ages, but lots of young people. My filmmaker son came with me (loved it) and I'm going to see it again next week, with my daughter. I'm looking forward to chatting with the rest of you who will see it over the next few days.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2022
  16. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brookings, Oregon
    I haven't listened to that in awhile or perhaps not at all, but I think the bigger point is what @GillyT and @Shawn speculate in their posts. I say speculate, because we just don't have enough evidence either way. As far as I know only Baz and Hanks have listened to those tapes and perhaps Peter Guralnick or Angie Marchese.

    As you said before Jason, it is also probably used as a device for Hanks to get far away from his very recognizable speaking voice. So far, I think the accent really adds a slightly ominous and evil element that I actually appreciate. I don't think Priscilla spent a great deal of time around Parker, so I dismiss that completely. Hell, Elvis himself didn't really spend that much time around Parker. How many times did Parker actually have dinner over at Graceland. Parker didn't even come to their wedding did he?

    To be honest, I don't really care much about this issue as it adds nothing to whether I am going to like this movie or not. The average audience member knows next to nothing about Parker as well. I was actually a lot more concerned when I heard that Priscilla and Jerry Schilling told Hanks that Parker was really a nice guy and they never had an issue with him. Those comments scarred the hell out of me. Thankfully, Baz and Tom stuck mostly with their original view that Tom Parker needed to be the villain of this here story, Lol. We also know from other interviews that Jerry definitely felt that Elvis "outgrew the colonel."
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2022
  17. GillyT

    GillyT Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wellies, N.Z
    I concur. A shiver went down my spine when I heard that.

    Baz suggested in one of the pressers that Parker was a sociopath. If so, then poor Elvis. I'm trying to exit a marriage which the covid lockdown exposed to be a sham - a shattering experience I would wish on no-one. Parker would've known just what buttons to push to keep Elvis in his orbit and how to charm the right people, to keep them onside. It's about power and control. Unless you've experienced it, it's hard to convey what a mind-f**k it is. Sorry for the language. It's just a bit raw at the moment!
     
  18. An excellent analysis!
     
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  19. GillyT

    GillyT Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wellies, N.Z
    Thanks buddy.
     
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  20. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brookings, Oregon
    I'm so glad you highlighted @GillyT's brilliant analysis in bold caps, because if you didn't, I'd like to believe that I would have gotten around to it!
     
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  21. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brookings, Oregon
    A great quote from Jeff Ewing's review in Forbes below:

    The best part of the film by a longshot is Austin Butler’s supernova-making turn as the titular singer. His performance has complexity, emotion, and so much charisma that it drives the film forward almost despite itself. While there are certain weaknesses, Butler’s performance distracts from nearly all of them in one of the most memorable performances of the year so far. It’s also worth noting that DeJonge is a great (albeit underused) Priscilla—she’s great in every scene she’s in despite being very underutilized.
     
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  22. garyt1957

    garyt1957 Forum Resident

    Location:
    mi
    But you'd very likely have the common sense to educate yourself about it as you got older and richer. Just putting some in the bank without any real investing is something even the poorest people can understand. And not spending every penny you make as it comes in should be seen as a bad idea to anybody with a brain. Elvis could have taken time off to rest at the end if he had saved some cash earlier. He should have been mega rich with the money he made.
     
  23. garyt1957

    garyt1957 Forum Resident

    Location:
    mi
    To me it's not that he stutters , he just doesn't seem to have anything of substance to say. He can't even talk about music with any conviction . Although I will say he was much better in the early years. Even in the On Tour interviews they're trying to pull words out of his mouth and he really has nothing at all to offer.
     
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  24. garyt1957

    garyt1957 Forum Resident

    Location:
    mi
    I used to collect Elvis picture sleeves . At one time I had them all up to 1977. Still do I guess.
     
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  25. garyt1957

    garyt1957 Forum Resident

    Location:
    mi
    Pretty sure some Memphis Mafia guys have refuted the "nobody recognized him on Sunset Blvd" thing
     
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