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 YTMN Presents a Remake Rematch Thread 
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Born at 7:36 am local time, in this city in the Hills of Arkansas, I have now been officially 65 years old for five minutes.

Happy My Birthday to you all!

(This greeting was introduce to me by my older son, who may well have invented it.)

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YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:42 pm
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And a Happy Jedi's Birthday to the rest of you!

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YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Fri Mar 31, 2017 11:30 pm
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Oh, and
Happy Roger's Birthday!

I met him on 24 March and learned that I was born on his 20th birthday.

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YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Fri Mar 31, 2017 11:32 pm
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Happy Birthday, Gort! (and Jedi!)

I didn't know you and Jedi shared a birthday! You're almost twins. :D

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Sat Apr 01, 2017 1:07 am
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Happy birthday, guys!

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Sat Apr 01, 2017 5:35 am
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Shieldmaiden wrote:
Happy Birthday, Gort! (and Jedi!)

I didn't know you and Jedi shared a birthday! You're almost twins. :D

We sure are. There's only a very small matter of roughly 32 years, and we would be. Almost.

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:16 am
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Stu wrote:
Happy birthday, guys!

Thanks, Stu.

I was thinking about one of my pre-father experiences this morning while sorting clothes to do laundry. When my wife and I first bought a house, one of the neighbor families had a little boy. He was good friends with the couple who lived on the other side of our house, and he would often stop over to visit.

I came out one morning and found the little boy sitting on Jessica's front steps. "I'm waiting for Jessica to wake up," he told me. I gestured to the empty driveway at the back and suggested, "She might be gone. Her car isn't here." He looked back into the rear driveway and pronounced, "Well, I'll wait."

I then told him something that Jessica had told me the day before. "I hear you were five years old yesterday," I said to him as cheerfully as I could muster. He looked at me for a second before he said, "I'm still five today!" He was dead serious about this. "Of course, you are," I agreed. Then I turned him into a small human guinea pig for my running experiments on how kid's minds worked. I figured I should understand these things before becoming a father.

"So, how long do you plan on staying five?" I asked him. His little brows knit closer together. "I don't understand," he confessed. "If it's a really good year, you might like to stay five longer than just one year, right?" I could see wheels engaging at high speed inside his skull. Finally he asked with a mixture of disbelief and excitement, "Do they let you do that!?"

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:22 am
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A Comparison of Tom Brown's School Days (1940),Tom Brown's Schooldays (1951),Tom Brown's Schooldays (1971) & Tom Brown's Schooldays (2005)
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IMDb link 6.8/10 with 315 user votes -- RT-link Tomatometer not available/user rating 63% with 1,184 votes

Year: 1940 Director: Robert Stevenson -- Writer: Walter Ferris, Frank Cavett, Gene Towne, C. Graham Baker and Robert Stevenson -- Cast: Cedric Hardwicke, Freddie Bartholomew, Jimmy Lydon, Billy Halop, Polly Moran, Gale Storm, Barlowe Borland -- Length: 86 min. B&W/Mono

Robert Stevenson's 1940 film adaptation of the Thomas Hughes book, Tom Brown's School Days, is not a film about Tom Brown. Instead, it is about Dr. Thomas Arnold (1795-1842), headmaster of Rugby School from 1828 to 1842. During the last nine years of this time, Thomas Hughes was a student at the school, and he might have written the novel as a tribute to Dr. Arnold; it was published 15 years after the great headmaster's death. In the novel and the other three adaptations featured in this Rematch, Dr. Arnold is a major character, but he isn't the true center of the story.

The film is likable enough, if you cotton to mid-20th films, but there isn't a lot that will stick with you after the screen flashes The End. Now, none of these four films is a great film, as far as cinema history goes, but they are solid entertainment. The original story is good enough to have spawned five screen adaptations over the years, but Stevenson's version is the only one that tells this particular story.

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The production company (The Play's The Thing Productions) generated only three films, all released in 1940: Little Men, this one, and Swiss Family Robinson. Oddly enough, Jimmy Lydon stars in two of the films, while Freddy Bartholomew stars in two of them. They are paired only in Tom Brown's School Days.

Something about the film seems otherworldly, and in a way more pronounced than if it were simply a British-made historical film (which it is not). The strangeness may come from the simple fact that this film was made in a different time, when the US was a different place. The story as presented is the perennial Hollywood favorite of those times: bucolic country lad comes to the big city, is treated like a bumpkin (which he is) but ultimately puts the city slickers in their place by playing their game better than they do. Don't be deceived by the English accents (some actors don't even try that) and the apparent English setting. This is an American film, about the things that Americans liked to see on the screen in those days.

Here's a mostly spoiler-free synopsis: Rugby School needs a new headmaster to straighten things round up there, and school board member Squire Brown pays a visit to Dr. Thomas Arnold. At the time Arnold is conducting a school for 10 boys in his home, but his reputation has brought Brown to see him. He offers, and Arnold accepts the position as headmaster of Rugby, where he will have educational responsibility for 300 boys. Arnold's expulsion of seven students for lying to him ruffles many feathers. Brown pays a visit and asks Arnold some hard questions. To show his confidence in Dr. Arnold and his methods, Squire Brown sends his fourth-form son, Tom, to Rugby school.

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Tom arrives, naive and gullible. A boy named East takes him under his wing. Tom likes the place. Until the bully Flashman takes a dislike to the new boy (on the first day). But it is on the evening of that day that Arnold meets with sixth-former Brooke, and asks for his help in stopping all the bullying that is traditional at Rugby School. Flashman grows even more petulant, and takes it out on Tom Brown. Eventually, because "it's the only way to stop people like Flashman," Tom volunteers to fight him in a spontaneous bare-knuckles bout with "the usual rules." During this fight someone blurts out some information which Tom is later accused by all of School House of having "told" to Dr Arnold, which gets his friend East into a situation of expulsion. Will this rift between school chums get smoothed over?

The actual plot is slightly more complicated than that (due to what would be spoilers if I included them), but not much. It is stripped of everything that makes the book wonderful, and of the four movies, this one is the least like the novel.

Here are some aspects of the film and whether I like them or don't care for them. On balance, I like about as many things as I don't, and there are many more aspects about which I feel indifferent:

Like: The film is well-made. Well-photographed, the sound recording and mix are done with skill, the sets look authentic (but what would I know?). The filming locations are not listed at IMDb. The editing is straightforward, and easy to read. The film is not too long, at 86 minutes. Most of the actors do a better than passing job, but it has that slick Hollywood feel to it, as if someone winds a spring, releases a catch, and the film runs off like a wind-up mouse.

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Like: The humorous moments in the film. The slapstick sequences (which I will deride immediately below, by the way) are truly laughable and often clever. The surprise laughter factor of these scenes is on par with any Three Stooges or Laurel and Hardy outing.
Don't Like: Because the film is about Dr. Arnold, there are many characters and incidents left out. Now, this isn't because of time constraints. The other adaptations seem to find time to include them. They are left out to include a bunch of Americana. Yeah, that's right. In a film set in England, we get treated to all kinds of bucolic slapstick. It's quite funny, but it necessitates paring the rest of the story down to an easy-to-follow Hollywood formula.

Don't Like: In fact, the Ferris-Cavett-Towne-Baker-Stevenson script turns a complex story into a simplistic story about how Dr. Arnold broke the culture of bullying at Rugby with the help of the fourth-form boys in the year Tom Brown came there. Not only do they leave out more of the original story than is necessary (as shown by later productions), but they add details that fit in all too neatly. Squire Brown's recruitment of Dr. Arnold to the school, for example, didn't take place in the novel, much less in real life. I'll say again that this doesn't make it a bad film, but it isn't quite Tom Brown's School Days, either.

Like: Although Doctor Thomas Arnold is arguably the most famous and influential headmaster of Rugby School, he is not presented as a flawless individual in this film. There is a scene where, after confiscating a slingshot from a boy, he plays with it in his office. Things may not go well, here. And Arnold is played by Cedrick Hardwicke as a rather judgmental, though basically fair-minded man. At least he has qualms about his choices: expelling certain boys will make Rugby School's culture better for the boys who attend, but expelling a boy from the school is an onerous thing in his life that the student may never live down. And Arnold loses sleep over this conflict of goals.
Don't Like: Man, is this film filled with judgmental people! Nearly all of the speaking characters, apart from Tom, his father, and Dr. Arnold's wife are constantly berating and judging those around them. The worst are the bullies three, of course. At one point all of School House decides that Tom is a snitch ("He told. Who else could have?"). In the fuller versions of the novel that we will look at, that aspect is toned down, because all the juvenile characters are running around "being boys." That's 20th century code for "getting into trouble and making questionable choices."

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Don't Like: Dr. Arnold is quite preachy. The film nearly lapses into didacticism, but according to Thomas Hughes, the book was intended to be didactic rather than mere entertainment. So, perhaps the movie is simply in line with the author's original intentions? Maybe.

Don't Like: Overall, the film is too sanguine. Tom comes across as a nice guy at nearly all times. He is not mischievous the way the boy in the novel is, and the Tom Browns in the rest of the films are. He is also a bit too much of a bumpkin, here. At the same time, Billy Halop's interpretation of Flashman, the villain, is not quite beastly enough. The sugar level is too high for my tastes.
Like: Regardless of this, Tom doesn't come across as a goody two-shoes. He follows the "rule" of the school: "Don't tell tales." This is a rule among the boys. And he gets into a fist-fight with another student (by the rules, of course, not a mere brawl). This, of course, breaks a primary rule of the school itself.
Don't Like: This film presents a Tom Brown who is easily steered by rules and peer pressure. It is not the Tom Brown of the novel, who seems to run amuck, at least within his own skin. Watching the boy discover, and then learn to drive self-control is the most interesting part of the book. The 1940 Brown is already a follower of rules, both written and socially abstract, and it doesn't leave room for the most fun aspect of the novel to be on display.

Don't Like: The Stevenson film, by omitting Tom's errant behavior, makes him a flatter character. In fact, none of the characters have any dimension to them, besides Arnold. And he is merely a slightly embossed figure. This is not an error that the other three adaptations make. But, then, Tom isn't the central figure of this story. He is only a utensil to get us roasting in the greatness of Dr. Thomas Arnold.

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Don't Like: Too little rugby! Two of the four versions spend a lot more time on the football aspect of Tom's career at Rugby, one substitutes cricket. This film totally omits the climactic game where Tom helps make School House the champions for the year. The 1940 film only has Tom's first game at Rugby school, not his hero-making final effort. A "flaw" it shares with the 1971 television adaptation.


Thomas Hughes wrote a novel that is so wide-ranging and full of episodes that no film could ever include everything. There are many incidents that show Tom's character as both rangy and moral. He has a good core but his outward show is lacking in coherence for much of the book. He is never hateful, but he is cheeky with people, having no use for social class. Indeed, in the early parts of the story he is shown to hang out with village boys more than his peers, despite people warning his father that he should not, for it will steer the boy in the wrong direction. Instead, Tom gets his egalitarian attitude from being one of the guys, instead of holding himself above the rest. In the 1940 film there is no clear presentation of that aspect of the boy's character. As I've already written (10-20 times!) in this review, he tends to be a bit too good compared to his novellic counterpart.

Keep in mind that by making Doctor Arnold the headmaster of the fictionalized Rugby School, Hughes was drawing on a child's memories of the man. The Doctor in the novel is not the historical Thomas Arnold, and the things the headmaster thinks and says are concoctions of Thomas Hughes' imagination. But the Doctor plays a focal role in the novel, although it is not the central role.

It is through the patience of the Doctor that Tom's well-formed inner core becomes his driving force, in the book. But in this film the lad is already nearly there by the time he goes to Rugby School. We see nothing of the reformation of Tom Brown. I think this film is less interesting than the others simply because that shortcut is taken in the writing. What makes this 19th century kid so interesting is that he is not fixed into some social class. In the novel it's fun to see just how impertinent young Tom Brown will become with his peers and superiors at the next turn. He is more like the US cartoon character Dennis the Menace for most of the book. If he wants to "steal" a fish by dropping a line from the forbidden bank of the Avon, he does so, for example.

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Tom Brown's School Days is solid family fare for its day, which is, of course the conformist 1940s. These days it would be a made for television movie. In fact, it was released for TV broadcast in 1946, and the 1971 and 2005 adaptations were made for TV. I've written elsewhere about how some of the older films reviewed for these Rematches feel very much like early TV episodes. This is another movie that fits that mold. There is nothing objectionable about the film, but nothing of great cinematic value, either. If you like old movies, give it a watch, if you can find a copy. It's on Youtube. If you are an Amazon Prime subscriber you can watch it without any additional charge. And the region 1 DVD is cheap.


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Tom Brown's School Days on Amazon Prime Video, free to watch if you are a Prime subscriber.

Thomas_Arnold_by_Thomas_Phillips.jpg. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Rugby School. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'Rugby School was founded in 1567 as a provision in the will of Lawrence Sheriff, who had made his fortune supplying groceries to Queen Elizabeth I of England. Since Lawrence Sheriff lived in Rugby and the neighbouring Brownsover, the school was intended to be a free grammar school for the boys of those towns. Up to 1667, the school remained in comparative obscurity.'

Tom Brown's School Days. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'The novel was originally published as being "by an Old Boy of Rugby", and much of it is based on the author's experiences. Tom Brown is largely based on the author's brother George Hughes. George Arthur, another of the book's main characters, is generally believed to be based on Arthur Penrhyn Stanley. The fictional Tom's life also resembles the author's, in that the culminating event of his school career was a cricket match. The novel also features Dr Thomas Arnold (1795–1842), who was the actual headmaster of Rugby School from 1828 to 1841.' and 'In the 1940 U.S. film, the role of Dr Thomas Arnold as a reform-minded educator was given greater prominence than in the novel.'

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:23 am
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Income taxes and property taxes filed and paid, and so forth.

Now time to get back to something I love more than paying taxes!

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Wed Apr 19, 2017 1:37 pm
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A Comparison of La Guerre des Boutons (1962), The War of the Buttons (1994),
La Guerre des Boutons (2011) and La Nouvelle Guerre des Boutons (2011)


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IMDb link 6.4/10 with 1,247 user votes -- RT-link Tomatometer not available/user rating 55% with 280 votes

Year: 2011 Director: Yann Samuell -- Writers: Louis Pergaud (novel), Yann Samuell (screenplay) -- Cast: Eric Elmosnino, Mathilde Seigner, Fred Testot, Alain Chabat, Vincent Bres, Salomé Lemire, Théo Bertrand, Tristan Vichard -- Length: 109 min. Color/Stereo

Yann Samuell's adaptation is clearly based on the 1962 film by Yves Robert. Louis Pergaud's novel is given credit at the beginning, but the film takes off with the Gibus brothers and couille molle and an eventual massed attack on Velrans by Langeverne, and vice versa. In the opening sequence there is a vast change from Robert's film: one of the "boys" turns out to be Lanterne, Big Tintin's sister, Marie. But, hang on. This is not really an enlargement of the slight expansion of Marie's role in the 1962 film, but an increased prominence of the girl's role, something that John Roberts kicked off in the 1994 re-remake!

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If you watch the films in chronological order from Robert, through Roberts and Samuell, you see that the second and third remakes each adapt the next earlier film. In one sense, the Irish film is a remake of Robert's French film, and Samuell's film is a remake of Roberts' 1994 movie. Each adds to the chain-updating with more modern technique, and by altering the relative prominence of characters. Tintin, who is a lieutenant of Lebrac in the novel, retains that position in the 1962 film and the 1994 version, but becomes Big Tintin, who is off at war in Algeria in the 2011 Samuell update. In other words, Pergaud's novel La guerre des boutons (1912) is still the impetus for this visual storytelling, but flexibility of presentation is a given in this series of remakes.

It's too bad we don't have any way to see La guerre des gosses (1936) to compare it with these others. I wonder what Yves Robert changed from that film, and what he retained. I'm certain he saw it before he made his 1962 movie. (Speculative certainty, I must add.)

Above all, and to a far greater extent than either the 1962 or 1994 films before it, Samuell's movie centers on the long-term feud between the villages as a dramatic character, just as much as it concentrates on the current crop of children who are characters learning to prolong that rivalry. The feud comes across as silly, which is what Pergaud seems to have intended. And this is mostly missing in the two prior cinematic retellings of the tale, one of which makes it seem that the quarrel began just this morning over the sale of tickets to a local raffle.

This film follows the prior two movies closely, with clever adjustments, right up until just before the end. And the ending is unlike any other manifestation of the story that I know of. But that's all right, because it's a Yann Samuell film based on the works of others, but not bereft of his influence.

Here are some aspects of the film and whether I like them or don't care for them:

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Like: Because I am not familiar with all novels, I can't say how frequent it is that a rivalry between villages is the major character in a story. But that is true of Louis Pergaud's 1912 novel; the rivalry between Longeverne and Velrans is an incredibly ancient aspect of living in the two villages. It started half a millennium ago, apparently over a dead cow in the road, although no one remembers how it was born with any exactitude. The feud is now mythical, and spiritual. And alive of its own accord, it seems. This film opens with a manifestation of this non-corporeal character! We meet the brothers Gibus as they attack some boys from Velrans for no reason that we can see, aside from pre-teen impetuousness. Yet, it is the ancient rivalry that we are meeting as much as we are meeting Aztec and his gang, or the brothers from Longeverne.
Don't Like: Samuell plays on the continuing rivalry between adults of the two villages too heavily. In the novel and in the previous films, the adults are, well, adults about it and cooperate more than they clash. The rivalry is childish, and remains the baliwick of the kids. But in this film, the intense rivalry between the headmasters of the Longeverne school (Maitre Merlin) and the Velrans school (Maitre Labru, Aztec's father) goes back to when they were children. These two grown men engage in puffery and insults as much as the kids of the villages do. It is comedic, but for my tastes it is overdone. (Should we perhaps blame this on the international effects of the dumbing-down of dads in exported US and British TV sitcoms between the 1960s and now?) But it isn't only dads who go to fist city at one point in the film. The moms get in on the fisticuffs, too.
Like: Despite this, Samuell's 2011 remake uses the enduring quality of the inter-village antagonism as a mindless character to a greater extent than anyone telling the tale since Pergaud first wrote it down. This aspect of the film is unsettling and charming at the same time. It says something about culture, and how we must change the ways in which we look at life and at other people if we want to enact any real change in the world.

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Don't Like: Samuell's choice to update the story while leaving it set in 1960 (like Robert's film) creates some dissonance with history. There is a progression in the configuration of the Lebrac household from the novel through the three films that we can watch. In the novel, M. Lebrac is a farmer and a drunk, but he lives with his family. Robert uses this character for the most part in his film, but transforms him into a drunken fool of a character, transferring the strength to Mrs. Lebrac. By 1994, and in Ireland, Fergus' father denies paternity, has little to do with his son other than to beat him and order him about, and to disclaim parenthood of the boy. And in Yann Samuell's telling, Lebrac lives with his mother and two younger sisters. Dad has deserted.
Like: It is likely true that any of the depicted configurations of the Lebrac family would have existed at any period in history. Even more-so in France or Ireland than in the fledgling nation of the USA, because those nations have a much longer history than we do. The family structure that gets great play in the media these days is the single mother household, so as the form experienced by the main human character of the film, it is a point of identification, even if there were fewer such households in the US or France in the 1960s.

Like: For the major strokes of his film Yann Samuell retains the major strokes of Yves Robert's adaptation. Where he alters the story the most is in the relationships between the human characters who play out the movements of the main character: the ancient grudge. As I wrote above, he takes a cue from Robert and Roberts and expands the role of Tintin's sister. It would be a spoiler for me to talk about just how much he expands the role.

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Like: Samuell and his co-writers add a clever device to the dialogue that helps to confer a sense of how long this War of the Buttons has been going on. "Bo-Tiz-Ma-Caram-Gal-Gad-Truf-Snick-Bus-Ki-Cav..." is the secret code that the Longevernes chant to brace themselves for any adversity, and to remind themselves that they are a solid group. Midway through the story we learn that Master Merlin added one of them (Gal), when he was the Chief of the Longevernes army. Lebrac added "Cav" when he became the leader. This provides a connection that the boy has with his schoolmaster, and turns the tide slowly toward the denouement of the movie.

Like: As beautiful as the comedy in the prior films is, this one has so many more clever and chuckle-worthy moments. As cute as Tigibus is in the 1962 film, he is even more charming in this version. In this, as in other aspects, Samuell improves on the classic 1962 presentation of this story.

Like: This whole film is on a human scale (which you may recall I find the most charming aspect of any film that has such a scale), with the added twist that it's on a child-size human scale. This is carried out to a greater extent than even The War of the Buttons (1994). Yves Robert's film doesn't get in as close to the kids as John Roberts' does, but Samuell goes them two or three better.

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Like: Klaus Badelt wrote music for the movie that is fitting, even edgy at times, but it is sparse. Where no music is needed, there is no music. Where music helps tell the story, there is music. At one point we hear a bluegrass banjo cut that really goes well with chasing through the forest. Sometimes a few instrumental sounds are all we need to echo the sadness of a face onscreen.

Like: Speaking of chase scenes, this film has a delightful way of making the kid-powered, on-foot chase scenes come across as exciting as anything in the Fast and Furious series. Anything of it that I've seen, that is. The cutting is only part of the excitement. Those kids were asked to really run, and the Steadicam operators kept up with them through the woods. Or, perhaps they devised very long runs of dolly track. Whatever they did, it looks great and has a very big motion impact on the screen.

Don't Like: In a sad, sad bow to the dichotomous nature of morality for super hero/superspy movies, Aztec in this film turns out to be purely psycho-pathologically evil. He is not so in the novel. He is not so in the 1962 or 1994 films. But in this film he has a meltdown...when he shouldn't have. L'Aztec, who is just a zealous kid, like Lebrac, in the novel, is turned into a James Bond villain. He even monologues. Ugh. This is as disappointing to me as the change made in the Jack character between the 1963 Lord of the Flies where Jack is the Head Boy of the school, and the choir leader, and the 1990 remake, where Jack becomes a reprobate kid with a rap sheet.

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Don't Like: Zephirin, the town constable who patrols with his hound on a leash, represents a constant background threat to the world of the Longeverne boys in the novel. Neither the 1962 nor 1994 adaptations feature him at all. But Samuell decides to include him, although he appears in only two scenes. There is none of the tension that the character invokes in the novel, and it isn't clear who he is supposed to be. He is comic relief, as he is in the book, but the role is so small, I wonder why he was included at all.

Don't Like: Despite the fact that the ending of the film is very moving (both times I've seen it something got in my eye!), there is a portion of the end where all the kids in the school draw with colored chalk on the asphalt playground around where Lebrac is sitting. He doesn't move while they do this. And it just seems so...dumb.
Like: And then the touching ending happens and I blubber.

Don't Like: Samuell keeps his film mostly back this side of pure fantasy. As I've pointed out, the entire story beginning with Pergaud is a fantasy, but the Fete des boutons scene goes all Disney with things that the kids are supposed to have concocted for their party. It's similar to John Roberts' overkill on the castle battle scene in his movie, and the Yves Robert exaggeration for the same party scene in the 1962 film. But, honestly, Pergaud made the scene opulent in the novel. My complaint with Samuell's version of the scene is that up until that point almost everything in this version of the story was dialed back to plausible.

Like: The casting is really imaginative, and spot on. The faces among the boys and girls and men and women who play the roles are all interesting, and few are "perfect." These look like real people, and the roles are played with such naturalism that very few moments come off as "acting."

Like: The whisper of first-time romance between Lebrac and Marie in the novel and the 1962 film is ratcheted up in John Robert's 1994 Irish version. Yann Samuell ratchets again, and it doesn't hurt the movie at all. Nothing goes too far, it's all very tenuous, but it's still young love. For a viewer the actual age of the characters, this aspect might have the oddly sweet fearsome aspect that such scenes had for me when I was that age. They held the ambivalent promise of desired but still scary things that were in my future at that time.

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It's beginning to get a bit same-old same-old to write so many reviews of films that I can't find much fault with. Perhaps that's because I picked all the films this round. Some of these rematches and NQRRs include films that are among my favorites.

This one is worth a watch if you haven't seen it. Once again, if you can't stand movies with kids you should give it a miss. But if children on screen don't wear you down, the performances from the youngsters are really worth catching. In part this might be because Samuell didn't ask anyone to do a scene he or she could not pull off. However he did it, it works. And the performances of Eric Elmosnino as Longeverne schoolmaster Merlin, Mathilde Seigner as Lebrac's mother, and Fred Testot as Father Simon are beautiful to watch. Testot is excellent as a guy who is totally out of his league being a Catholic priest in such a place. He seems only seconds away from totally losing control at all times. Seigner plays a very tough Mom to chief Lebrac, at first resistant to Maitre Merlin's recognition of the boy's intellectual gifts. But things work out by the end of the movie.

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La Guerre des boutons the novel in French.

La Guerre des boutons (film, 2011). From French Wikipedia. There is apparently no English Wikipedia article about this film. 'Adapté du roman français éponyme de Louis Pergaud, c'est une comédie qui traite des thèmes de l'indépendance, de la solidarité, de l'enfance et du passage à l'âge adulte.' from Google translate: 'Adapted from the French eponymous novel by Louis Pergaud, it is a comedy that deals with the themes of independence, solidarity, childhood and transition to adulthood.' A pretty accurate translation for once!

Box-office France 2011. From French Wikipedia. '35 La Guerre des boutons Drapeau : France Yann Samuell 1 480 018 10 (fin)' Finished in 35th place in French box office for the year (the Barratier film finished at 31).

Yann Samuell. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'Samuell was screenwriter and director of a 2011 adaptation of Louis Pergaud's popular novel, La guerre des boutons. This adaptation is set in the 1960s, with the Algerian War as a backdrop. It is produced by Marc du Pontavice.'

Yann Samuell. From French Wikipedia. 'Issu d’une famille de comédiens, Yann Samuell grandit entre les coulisses des théâtres et les plateaux de cinéma. Très jeune, il se décide à devenir réalisateur et pour ce faire prend des cours d'art dramatique afin de comprendre de l'intérieur le travail de direction d'acteurs.' Google translate: 'Coming from a family of actors, Yann Samuell grew up behind the scenes in theaters and film theaters. At a very young age, he decided to become a director and to do this takes drama courses to understand the work of directing actors from the inside.'

La Guerre des Boutons Date de sortie 14 septembre 2011 (1h 49min). (article is in French)

War of the Buttons [La guerre des boutons]. 'Rent SD $2.99/HDX $3.99' 'In the countryside of France, two groups of boys from the rural villages of Longeverne and Velran are in constant war against each other. Their war is a tradition that passes from father to son and without a motive but the rivalry between the peasants.'

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

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Wed Apr 19, 2017 1:37 pm
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Post Re: YTMN Presents a Remake Rematch Thread

It would be cool to finish one of the matches in the coming couple of weeks. I wonder if I can.

Another essay for Tom Brown is ready.

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:53 am
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Post Re: YTMN Presents a Remake Rematch Thread

A Comparison of Tom Brown's School Days (1940), Tom Brown's Schooldays (1951), Tom Brown's Schooldays (1971) & Tom Brown's Schooldays (2005)

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A Real School

It isn't uncommon for the names of schools in novels and movies to be fictional, but when Thomas Hughes wrote about a fictional boy and sent him to a boarding school, he selected the school he had attended as a boy to be the location, and the headmaster of that school to be a character. This isn't the only time an author has written fiction about a real place, or incidents from his own life, of course. The background here is interesting, though.

The school is celebrating its 450th year in 2017. The game invented there is played round the world. The modern school has an adjunct school in Thailand. They have a web store with merchandise. Wouldn't Tom Brown be amazed? They have an anniversary book: From Elizabeth to Elizabeth, because Rugby School was founded during the reign of EI and still exists while EII is on the throne.

The game of rugby rules football was invented in the town of Rugby, England, where the school was and is located. In fact, Rugby Rules Football was invented at The Rugby School! The game that Tom Brown plays is a version of Rugby Football. The website that confirmed that fact for me also points out that many schools in England have variations of rules for football. It seems to this Yank that Rugby Football is best-known, though. Still there are qualms about the origin story. There is no verifiable evidence that William Webb Ellis one day picked up the ball and ran with it. Nor that he caught the ball and ran with it. In fact, (from Wikipedia) 'Thomas Hughes (author of Tom Brown's Schooldays) was asked to comment on the game as played when he attended the school (1834–1842). He is quoted as saying "In my first year, 1834, running with the ball to get a try by touching down within goal was not absolutely forbidden, but a jury of Rugby boys of that day would almost certainly have found a verdict of 'justifiable homicide' if a boy had been killed in running in."'

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The William Webb Ellis incident is commemorated by a plaque at the school, although the incident has been discredited, for the most part, since 1895. The Wikipedia biographical article about him begins 'Reverend William Webb Ellis (24 November 1806 – 24 January 1872) was an English Anglican clergyman and the alleged inventor of rugby football whilst a pupil at Rugby School. According to legend, Webb Ellis picked up the ball and ran with it during a school football match in 1823, thus creating the rugby-style of play. Although the story has become firmly entrenched in the sport's folklore, it is not supported by substantive evidence, and is discounted by most rugby historians as an origin myth.' Still, the Rugby World Cup competition prize is called the William Webb Ellis Cup.

Other sports are pursued at Rugby School, of course.

Thomas Hughes included the most famous of Rugby School's headmasters, and the one he knew when he was there, as the headmaster in his book. Dr. Thomas Arnold was a real man. But he didn't found the school by any means. Three of the movies make it seem as if he was the one who started up Rugby School; instead, he was a reformer whose changes, partly in thanks to Thomas Hughes' book, no doubt, became the standards for British public schools. Arnold was the head of Rugby School from 1828 to 1842.

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According to the Wikipedia article (I wonder if students at Rugby are allowed to use Wikipedia as a source), there are 15 houses at the school. Thomas Hughes and his fictional counterpart, Tom Brown, was a member of School House, which was founded in 1750. The first ever Rugby School House is called Town House, founded, with the school itself, in 1567. Rugby school was 289 years old when Hughes published his famous book. Peter Green became its 38th Headmaster in 2014.

In the ancient times before 1975, only boys were admitted to Rugby School as students. Beginning that year girls could enter the sixth form. Since 1995, according to our sources, Rugby school has been fully co-educational, with 7 of the Houses set aside for female students. They have slots for 446 boys and 360 girls. If you are a day pupil your parents are out £20,094 per year. If you are a boarding student that goes up to £32,025. Consequently, the school has 100 full-time staff members, with an additional 9 part-timers. The students range in age from 11 to 18 years old, which, I assume, has always been true. Tom Brown was an 11-year old when he started at Rugby School.

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A closing note for my fellow US readers: in Britain, as I understand it, a "public" school has tuition, but it is open to students from any walk of life. As for the systems of "forms" and such, I don't really understand what I have read about that. I'm sure it's as simple as First, Second, Third grades and so forth, if you grow up with it, though.



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Rugby football. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. "Rugby football is a type of football developed at Rugby School in Rugby, Warwickshire, one of many versions of football played at English public schools in the 19th century."

Rugby School. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'Rugby School was founded in 1567 as a provision in the will of Lawrence Sheriff, who had made his fortune supplying groceries to Queen Elizabeth I of England. Since Lawrence Sheriff lived in Rugby and the neighbouring Brownsover, the school was intended to be a free grammar school for the boys of those towns. Up to 1667, the school remained in comparative obscurity.'

William Webb Ellis. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'After leaving Rugby in 1826, he went to Brasenose College, Oxford, aged 20. He played cricket for his college, and for Oxford University against Cambridge University in a first-class match in 1827. He graduated with a BA in 1829 and received his MA in 1831. He entered the Church and became chaplain of St George's Chapel, Albemarle Street, London (closed c.1909), and then rector of St. Clement Danes in the Strand.'

Rugby, Warwickshire. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'Rugby School was founded in 1567 with money left in the will of Lawrence Sheriff, a locally born grocer, who moved to London and earned his fortune. Rugby School was originally intended as a school for local boys, but over time became a mostly fee-paying private school. The Lawrence Sheriff School was eventually founded in the late 19th century to carry on Sheriff's original intentions.'

State-funded schools (England). From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'Since 1998, there have been six main types of maintained school in England:'

Public school (United Kingdom). From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'A public school in England and Wales is an older, student selective and expensive fee-paying independent secondary school which caters primarily for children aged between 11 or 13 and 18. The term "public" should not be misunderstood to mean that these are public sector schools: they are in fact private sector.'

Rugby School website.. Source of several modern photos of the school.

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Rugby School shop. I was hoping they might have a DVD of the 1916 silent film version of the story, but I didn't find one. I did find a 450th Anniversary mini rugby ball, with the advisory that it arrives deflated. Shame, we could have had our own diminutive cache of Rugby, England air, otherwise.

A load of old balls: The story of rugby union. From bbc.co.uk iWonder. 'So how exactly did rugby get to be the game it is today? From chaotic giant mauls with no referees to the dawn of the professional era, here are 20 landmark moments that helped shape one of the greatest games in the world.' Source of drawing of mid-1800's rugby game.

Form (education). From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 'Schools do not follow a consistent pattern in naming forms.' Well, that explains only part of my confusion.

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:53 am
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Post Re: YTMN Presents a Remake Rematch Thread

Has anyone bothered to watch any of the films from this round?

Jus' wonderin'.

_________________
YTMN's Remake Rematch Thread. Catalog Rounds 1-3
Latest 20 Apr 2017. Thread COMPLETE 25 May 14 (2d time!)
Round Four complete: BTM Batman -- BCH On the Beach/These Final Hours NQRR

in progress:
BIC Bicycle Thieves/Beijing Bicycle Es1, 4 Rv1 DP
BOU La Guerre des Boutons/War of the Buttons Es1 2 3 4 5 Rv1 2 3 Sc
BRH Battle Royale/Hunger Games Es1 Sc Rv1 2
BRN Tom Brown's Schooldays Es 1 2 3 Sc Mu Rv1
DRB Devil's Backbone/Dorm Es1 2 Rv1 2 Sc
HEL Mayor of Hell/Crime School/Hell's Kitchen DP Rv1 Es1
PAI Pinocchio/A. I. Es2 Rv1 DP Mu
SKN Victim/Skin I Live In Es1 3 Dir Rv1 2
TNS Tingler/Creeps/Slither Rv1 Rv2 Es1 SFX
TZN Tarzan of the Apes/Tarzan the Ape Man/Greystoke Script Rv1 2 3 Es1 2 3

The Future Unreels

trxbooks.com


Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:58 am
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Post Re: YTMN Presents a Remake Rematch Thread

I had never heard of these. I might have to check these out.


Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:45 am
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