Monday, August 16, 2004

“Raymond Shaw is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being I've ever known in my life.”

The Movie: The Manchurian Candidate, 1962 (George Axelrod, screenwriter; John Frankenheimer, dir.)
Who says it: Frank Sinatra as Major Bennett Marco; James Edwards as Corporal Alvin Melvin
The context: Marco and the other unit members can’t help saying this every time Shaw’s name comes up, even though they remember Shaw being a jerk.
How to use it: To acknowledge that you’re being brainwashed.

This line comes up less frequently in Jonathan Demme's remake, which I saw yesterday. The remake is a good movie, completely different from the original in tone and maybe even in message. In the original movie, this line becomes funny -- funny in a dark, mean way -- but the remake has very little humor in it.

It feels strange to be in Los Angeles this week, when I'd planned to be gone. Good, but strange.

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