Monday, January 30, 2006

Till They Had No Brain Left At All

Who the heck is running IMDB? Better yet, who is proofreading the site? It's clearly somebody with as much film knowledge as the young and dumb production assistants in that scene from Swimming with Sharks who didn't know who Shelley Winters was until Frank Whaley mentioned Poseidon Adventure (As if the entire Kill Shelley Winters career had never happened! imagine no A Double Life, no 1949 Great Gatsby, no Winchester 73 [true, she just gets winged in that one], no A Place in the Sun, no Lolita--nobody died like Shelley, and now she is dead--sad.)

But I have distracted myself with my own knowledge, something the folks at IMDB clearly never will do. For today we get this news entry:

Classic Ingrid Bergman thriller Gaslight is set to hit the big screen again, with British film-maker Joe Wright at the helm. In the 1944 thriller Charles Boyer played a husband trying to drive his wife (Bergman) to insanity. The new Gaslight will be Pride & Prejudice director Wright's first Hollywood venture. The original movie, set in Victorian England, co-starred Joseph Cotten and a teenage Angela Lansbury in her film debut. It garnered seven Oscar nominations and won two. Cast details for the updated remake, to be set in California, have not been announced.

Excuse me, original movie? If they weren't all dead, the folks at MGM who tried to erase the original Gaslight when promoting the Bergman-Boyer version would have a good laugh. For as even IMDB knows somewhere in its unconnected bytes, there's a 1940 English version with Anton Walbrook and Diana Wynyard that is supposed to be quite good (Andrew Sarris, for one, likes to compare and contrast the two versions in his book You Ain't Heard Nothing Yet, but that's mostly to show off, again, that he's screened every movie in existence at least once.)

Then again, in its promo spots NBC consistently refers to The Office as one of the most original shows on television, even with Ricky Gervais's name right there in the credits. It could just be that things don't exist if they happen in the UK. That would explain the non-response in the media to the Downing Memos, at least.


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