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"Vengeance is what I am."
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August 07 2009

The Original Buffy - a new take on the 1992 movie. A thought provoking look at the first Buffy movie. Probably the best thing you'll read all week.

I really enjoyed that one, thanks, Simon!
I loved this:
"Any number of screenwriters could make similar complaints, of course, and may even release their unsullied screenplays for comparison, but few also have 240 hours of a fleshed-out personalized version of their vision to underline the point."
In your face.
Wow. I really enjoyed this. Thanks for the shove in that direction. I've always had a guilty enjoyment of the film, and now I don't feel so bad about it. I feel as if it's okay to take bits of the film and leave others, and still have my Buffy origins. Now, I suppose I'd better do some work...
I always liked this movie. I don't care what anyone thinks. Don't care for the way they treated Joss. But liked the film.
Not a fan of the film in general (the essay's comment about the tone being all over the place sums up the main reason) but that's quite an even-handed look at it, nicely written too.

Interesting that the bait-and-switch at the start of the series was originally in the film's screenplay too (or a similar idea anyway - the female that appears to be fodder of one sort or another but actually turns out to be the main player in the scenario). Thinking it's time to track down the original script and take a look at it (as the essay makes clear, even subtle changes can have a big effect).
Nicely done.

I disliked the film so much that re-watching isn't an option, so I've never made the effort to figure out exactly why it doesn't click for me.

Also, interesting to get some sense of the imagery and structure of the original screenplay. Seems pretty clear that the faults with the film aren't the writer's fault, but I guess I knew that already.
At the risk of being bashed by the more sensitive of the Whedeonites (remember, I'm one of you too)... this intricate an examination of the BTVS movie is tantamount to doing one's doctoral dissertation on Navy Seals.

Many (most, even) of Joss's works are deserving of such considered examination, but this one doesn't meet that cut.
I liked this article much more than I liked the movie (having seen the movie is why it took me until the middle of Season 2 to check out the series...)
Guess I'll finally watch the movie tonight.

Didn't read it all (no time,) but one thing I take issue with is questioning the accuracy of Whedon's premise. Whether or not it's hsitorically accurate, the perception exists and therefore is a legitimate target .
That may be the best review of the original Buffy movie that I've ever seen. I agreed with everything the author said, but most especially what he stated about Ms. Swanson at the end. I might not have liked the movie, but she was a wonderful Buffy.

Thanks for the link, Simon.
Nice summer reading :) Thanks!
@Rick Gershman VII - I'll have you know, Navy Seals is a poignant examination of the human condition and man's struggle with truth and hard choices within stressful diplomacy before an uncertain, economic future!

....No wait, that's Paul Blart: Mall Cop....No wait.
How about a doctoral examination of "Transformers" while we're at it?
Seriously, my website has a shorter essay that just looked at how the movie was different from the movie, the public's response, and how it should be MST3K fodder. This more extensive essay looked at the plot, compared it to other movies, and recognized the movie as the ancestor to the TV show. It's just as extensive as any essay you'd read about the TV show or Serenity.
Wow, hell of a read! I've had the BtVS dvd sitting on my shelf, unwachted and unloved for years now. I guess the time has come.
That was a very well-put, fair assessment of the movie. Thank you for sharing!
Does anyone know where to read (Joss's version of) the original script? I found one, but I'm not sure which version it is.
Maybe I'm wrong but don't remember Joss complaing about Fran Rubel Kuzui. He said that some people in the movie production made bad decisions.

I don't see most of the movies referenced, but don't understand the mention of Spawn.

I liked Kristy Swanson too. To me she could be in a future Fray movie, playing Erin.

And should be fan if anyone pointed out that in the movie, seems like Buffy had a more active sexual life that in the show
With regard to the movie, Joss's stance on Kuzui (to my recollection) has been, "She didn't direct it how I would've, but she was the director, and it was her call. That's that." Or so he said in an interview a while ago. A good interview, at that, I should dig that one up.

His stance might've been different with regard to their producer role on the TV show, but I dunno.
BCM, TV Buffy was several years younger than Movie Buffy, hence the lack of sex.
Actually, the best thing I've read all week is the bio of Hal Ashby that I'm currently about three fourths of the way through, but that was an excellent analysis nonetheless.

Similarly to Rowan, I never watched the show until three or four years after it went off the air solely because I saw the movie during its theatrical run (I did actually get a kick out of the film, but as a lark more than anything; when I heard it was being turned into a TV show, all I could think was that Hollywood really had run out of ideas).
I saw the movie long ago and liked it all right. I thought it had something going for it that similarly themed movies (like maybe 'The Lost Boys', for example) lacked.
Roland, similar story here. I saw the BTVS movie, and ignored the title when I saw it in TV listings. I read no reviews of TV at the time--no interest it. "It" as in it's mostly ads, so I don't watch often.

I think the writer is seeing what he wants to see in the gymnasium architecture (but hey, I read it just after waking this a.m. and may have missed something), but otherwise enjoyed it very much. Enough to make me check the price on Amazon. FYI: It actually lists one 2-movie disc, with BTVS as one of the flicks.
I really enjoyed the essay, which was clear-headed and very well written. It is refreshingly objective, as well as insightful. I am surprised to find myself interested in checking out the movie again, to follow some of the points made.
One thing I've always wondered - and this is a BIG difference between the two - is why Joss was OK with an adjusted normal boyfriend for Buffy in the movie but then couldn't bring himself to do the same in the series. I suppose the closest he got was Riley, but then Riley turned out to be GI Joe.
LOL... well he wasn't exactly normal was he? Couldn't really think of a great parallel character for "elite paranormal strike team." I just had to go with a topical fictional strike team ;).

[ edited by azzers on 2009-08-08 06:48 ]
S.H.I.E.L.D.? Maybe Riley was Nick Fury.
I just had to go with a topical fictional strike team.

I read this analysis, and then spent hours reading this blogger's take on Dollhouse, The Shining, the best movies of 2006, King Kong, and others. I don't always agree but wow, good stuff.
I never saw the movie until after I was a fan of the show, and I didn't much care for it.

One of the more stupefying conversations of my life was trying to explain to a friend of mine why the TV series was not a two-bit knockoff of this great movie that she loved. Anyone ever had a similar experience?
I thought that thing about the architecture was tongue in cheek. While those might be common themes for that imagery by ending with "cheerleaders = hot" that was just an elaborate set up for a punchline since the rest of the captions were pretty straight-forward attempts at humor. I actually dug that though, since it was like a preemptive strawman argument for naysayers to shoot down while the rest of the points in the actual text seem less desperate.

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