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BetterMost, Wyoming & Brokeback Mountain Forum  |  The World Beyond BetterMost  |  The Culture Tent (Moderator: Sheriff Roland)  |  Topic: Man in an Orange Shirt 0 Residents and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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gattaca
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« Reply #20 on: September 08, 2017, 05:43:05 am »

I posted this over in an UBF thread.  I figure  we could also have a discussion here..  

Some of those shots have striking parallels in BBM, in fact there are a few dead on.

 ** SPOILERS  ON **

I agree with that scene where they ran into each other, the one you quoted.  Powerful.

Times are approximate as I watched it in 2 parts from the Youtube links posted earlier.

8:15 in Flora is teaching a lesson to her class about Achilles and Patroclus.  The class is having a discussion (and snicker) about the two Greeks when Flora casually explains their relationship as "love between heroes was regarded as surpassing the love within marriage..."  Both Michael and Thomas served in the War as we are shown in the opening sequences.   Contrast those words with her reaction(s) to finding Thomas's un-mailed letters to Michael.  Add that to the angry, hateful words she spews at Michael about Thomas's painting after she confronts him.  Now layer on her cold reaction to running into Thomas and that "good-bye" kiss Thomas motions as she and Michael leave on the bus where he essentially wishes her well.  So did she ever grasp what she was teaching?

17:30 minutes in - there's the "you have no idea..."  that gave goose-bump parallels to that same Jack and Ennis conversation.

00:41, 00:43+ - the whole exchange with Thomas' mother.  When she opens the curtain and says  "she's been storing " it's a direct parallel to Jack's mother telling Ennis to go upstairs and look about Jack's room.  Then there are her lines around the painting(s), the eye contact about THE painting, "...but it is you, isn't it?" and then she tells Michael he must take it. That, I feel, parallels Ennis and Jack's mom's interaction at the end with the bag and shirt.

00:49 minutes in - when Micheal goes to see Thomas getting out of prison.  Thomas looks around just hoping Micheal is there but their eyes never meet.  Then Michael goes home and collapses going up the stairs.   (OMG it was Ennis in the alley all over again)  Then there was the shot in that same scene looking up at him thru the staircase runs, framing it like his own prision.   Whew!

00:55 - 00:58 mins  - When Thomas bumps into Michael and Flora and he connects with Michael one last time.  Thomas blowing Flora the kiss admits defeat and he knows he will likely never see Michael again.  In fact, I think that is the last time we see ever lay eyes on each other.   In this same scene, Thomas gives Michael's son Patrick a gift.  It's a box of pastel chalks... pay attention to that box.

1:17 mins in - The guys in the field, the camera work panning around them is like the scene with Jack and Ennis during their last meeting when Ennis collapses in Jack's arms.

1:49 mins in - those intertwined paintings after all those years - OMG - it kicked me damn hard right in the gut.  Still gives me chills just thinking about it now and what Flora had to face in that instant.

1:56 mins in - that letter which we didn't know the fate of.  Now here's another kicker.  It is almost an exact book end in running time to its first appearance.  When Flora gives her grandson Adam the single letter she saved which Michael NEVER sent to Thomas, she kept it in the "Pastel Colors" box Thomas had given Michael's son Robert at that last chance meeting.  WOW.  Nice detail.

Since the story is "loosely based" on Patrick Gale's father, it is unclear how much of what we see may be factual other than he was gay. But none-the-less, that does not detract from the story, the acting or the emotional conveyance. If there is a letter, what a treasure!  

(This is a delta from the story... )  See https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2017/jul/28/my-fathers-love-for-another-man-patrick-gale-man-in-an-orange-shirt

** SPOILERS OFF ***

I'll keep replaying this in my head for a long time.
I also will do more reading about his real life.
This will be a permanent film for viewing.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/tv/2017/07/31/man-orange-shirt-heart-rending-account-gay-life-forties-britain/
"...personified brilliantly the two poles of the dilemma gay men faced: to bow to social convention and die inwardly or live a true life and be pilloried for it. All of this made for a thoroughly engaging drama that did a terrific job of reminding us how damaging and repellent attitudes to homosexuality were in the not-so-distant past."

Here's another -> https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2017/aug/01/man-in-an-orange-shirt-review-heartbreaking-happiness-denied
"Much of the tension is between Michael’s inability to move beyond the life that is expected of him and Thomas’ inability, or unwillingness, to toe the line. Both positions are sympathetic. James McArdle’s Thomas is angry and defiant, beaten down and wounded by imprisonment and injustice. Oliver Jackson-Cohen is Michael, all Buzz Lightyear jawline and watery Jake Gyllenhaal eyes. It’s handy that he’s got such expressive peepers, as much of the emotion here is offered in a series of lingering looks shot across various gorgeously decorated period rooms that say, variously: “I’m in pain,” “I’m in agony,” or “Sorry about marrying you even though I’m deeply in love with my best friend.” "

One more --> http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/writersroom/entries/6a5ba29a-76c3-4a85-9af2-e8f77da7a96d

V.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2017, 08:59:28 am by gattaca » Logged

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« Reply #21 on: September 12, 2017, 07:05:13 am »

Ran across this last night.  Explanations from Patrick Gale for MIAOS --> http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2017-08-07/patrick-gale-reveals-the-secrets-of-man-in-an-orange-shirt/1
V.
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« Reply #22 on: September 12, 2017, 03:04:33 pm »

Thanks for this. Although I am 20 - 25 years behind Michael and Thomas, so much applies. I told my mother (or she found me crying) when in my early 20's. She always loved me but never liked me mentioning my sexuality.  In her last year, 2006 aged 96, I played the cd of BBM and she told me she did not like that cowboy music :-)
I looked after mum, who could not be left alone, while my sister went to see BBM. My sister (aged 83) is totally supportive but my sexuality is never mentioned in front of her husband (who does know) and her best girlfriend (not sure?) who are both highly homophobic. Obviously my friends are mainly in their 70's. I know they are all aware but I never mention it and once or twice when I have made some comment (eg some man is good looking) I see and hear the embarrassed titters. I have had longer conversations with one or two (they are nearly all women, widowed or divorced) who I know are more au fait with it eg one whose brother was gay and committed suicide. I never mention it to my best male friends who are all married with grandkids but they must know.
As I said I recorded MAIOS so must go and watch it again. I rarely watch movies twice but did see BBM 4 times, easily a record for me but. although I have 2 copies I know I have not watched it for at least 8 years.
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« Reply #23 on: September 19, 2017, 05:53:35 am »

I have just finished watching MIAOS again although this time in 2 parts, the first was nearly a week go. It was good to notice somethings in the movie that I missed the first time especially when you understand the significance. Again I ended up sobbing my heart out, that last part where you hear Michael reading his unposted letter to Thomas while you see Adam hopefully making it up with Steve just gets to me.

I am debating whether to show it to my sister when she visits me next month. As I said, I sent her to see BBM while I cared for Mum. Not sure I can sit through the sex scenes with my big sister.

Our parents did not display much affection, other than a brief kiss, when we were growing up. I knew very little about sex until in my mid 20's (my school friends were more likely to discuss theology than sex :-) ) so no wonder I went rather mad in my late 20's in dark backrooms. Meeting a guy socially then progressing from there is completely foreign to me. So I really understood where Adam was coming from. I wish I could have seen such a movie when I was young.
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« Reply #24 on: September 19, 2017, 10:32:21 am »

Brian, I feel for you and those of your generation who missed the ordinary but quite magical experience of meeting someone, getting to know them, and falling in love with them. That should not be denied to anybody! I want to see MIAOS, I have a lot to catch up on.
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« Reply #25 on: September 20, 2017, 04:38:09 pm »

I have just finished watching MIAOS again although this time in 2 parts, the first was nearly a week go. It was good to notice somethings in the movie that I missed the first time especially when you understand the significance. Again I ended up sobbing my heart out, that last part where you hear Michael reading his unposted letter to Thomas while you see Adam hopefully making it up with Steve just gets to me.

Brian,

I know you and I have our differences, but I completely agree with you about MIAOS.

The ending of the movie interweaves the tragic and the hopeful. Since we don't know until the end that Michael never mailed the letter, that tragedy hits home when Flora gives it to Adam. For me, the hardest part about that is that Thomas never really knew how much Michael loved him.

At the same time, the letter is cathartic for Adam.  The final shower scene indicates that he is now free from his anxiety. And then when he lets Steve read it, we see that there is hope for their relationship. The way I interpreted the ending is that Micheal did not write that letter in vain after all. It redeemed his grandson.   
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« Reply #26 on: September 24, 2017, 09:05:29 am »

I have just finished watching MIAOS again although this time in 2 parts, the first was nearly a week go. It was good to notice somethings in the movie that I missed the first time especially when you understand the significance. Again I ended up sobbing my heart out, that last part where you hear Michael reading his unposted letter to Thomas while you see Adam hopefully making it up with Steve just gets to me.

SPOILERS ON
The team's attention to details and layering for MIAOS is impressive.  There are so many small things which are foreshadowed earlier in and then return later on. The best one I can think of is the pastels box Thomas gives to Michael's son.... which eventually Flora gives to Adam.
SPOILERS OFF

The cuts are brief and it's something you would normally hardly notice, then wham, you do.  See my earlier index listing for points which pay homage to BBM as well things like I just mentioned.  V.   
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« Reply #27 on: September 24, 2017, 09:07:30 am »

The ending of the movie interweaves the tragic and the hopeful. Since we don't know until the end that Michael never mailed the letter, that tragedy hits home when Flora gives it to Adam. For me, the hardest part about that is that Thomas never really knew how much Michael loved him.

At the same time, the letter is cathartic for Adam.  The final shower scene indicates that he is now free from his anxiety. And then when he lets Steve read it, we see that there is hope for their relationship. The way I interpreted the ending is that Micheal did not write that letter in vain after all. It redeemed his grandson.  

Well said!  And it's one of the reasons this "Made for TV film" is now on my top 10 favorites.  It could easily have played in theaters. V.
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« Reply #28 on: September 24, 2017, 06:56:24 pm »

Well said!  And it's one of the reason's this "Made for TV film" is now on my top 10 favorites.  It could easily have played in theaters. V.

Thank you. The film is very well-crafted. It makes my heart ache so much for Michael and Thomas that I've been writing scenarios in my head that would allow them to escape their fate. At the same time, I realize that the choices everyone made were essential to the final outcome of the story.
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« Reply #29 on: September 27, 2017, 02:50:51 pm »

I think the film shows the different opportunities available for those in artistic professions (Thomas) to those in the more "straight" world (Michael).
Even though I grew up about 20-25 years later, I can still see the vast difference today. I had an argument with an entertainer in Sydney about my age who complained that BBM was just another sad gay movie. He was well known as being gay but people laughed (some at, some with) him. There were bohemian areas of Sydney where gays could meet and some could live together, generally unmolested as long as they were not too obvious. As an artist, Thomas could pass and earn an income in that world but even his mother referred to "that creature" when mentioning the guy (cannot remember his name) with whom he shared lodgings.

Michael was in the world of business which would never accept a gay lifestyle in the 50's. A couple might set up house in the suburbs but they would be in fear of the neighbours taking a dislike to them (perhaps an argument over fences or just being zealots) and calling the police as I saw in another UK TV program recently.

I have friends who were able to find the gay scene, my first long time boy friend had found it as a teenager but he still lived with his mother. Today he lives with his partner in their own home in a very conservative religious area of the city, no problems. I remember the first time I went to a political rally (I was almost 30) and it was the first time I had been in a room of gays. I nearly left when the first speaker said "Hi Girls". As a teacher in a high school I had to suppress any sign of effeminacy and was repulsed by it. I have got over that but it took a long while.

Many others succumbed to pressure and got married. The psychiatrist told me to find a nice girl and my last contact with him was to tell him I was engaged. Probably saved me from electro therapy but when I realised it was not going to work and broke it off, it was the only time my Mother turned against me. I remember my fiancee saying she would not sue me for breach of promise and not long later one of my primary school class mates was sued and it was in the papers and I think the last such case  before the law was changed.
I often met gay men who were married and snuck out for sex. Some others came to an arrangement with their wives and of course, others divorced. I use to meet a man who was headmaster of the local high school and we had to meet outside the school zone. He was married with 2 sons. He could not understand why I broke off our meetings as he knew I was lonely. But I wanted a relationship, doing ordinary things together not just quick sex so he could return to his family.

Possibly Michael and Thomas could have had a life together in France. I know some friends who spent a year in Paris in the 60's and told me how much better it was. I did not go there until 1974 and it was legal in London by then but still not the freedom to be open like it is today.

However I am a product of those times. There is a man in our over 60's club, two years older than me. The first time I met him I thought to myself  you are gay. Some of the women have asked me if he is. One time when the group went away, the leader said the two men can have the Queen bed rooms (he would not share which was ok by me . He giggled and said "I'm not a queen".  I nearly decked him. I should have said "I am"  As I have told some women in the group, it is now common knowledge, but I never mention it to the other married men even though they are now close friends. I guess they know.  A few years ago I showed a gay guy from Auckland (in his 20's) around Dunedin. He had written he liked older men but I think I was too old  Grin  I said to him. "I do not go into a room and announce I am gay" He replied "I do".

I have raved on about my thoughts on MIAOS.
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