The stars at night are big and bright...

The stars at night are big and bright...
The stars at night are big and bright...

Monday, December 29, 2008

Movie of the Week: That Thing You Do!

This is one of my personal Top 10 favorite films. Anytime it is on, it's my default choice. That Thing You Do is a fun, snappy, innocent little 60's romp written, produced and directed by Tom Hanks. It stars Tom Everett Scott, Liv Tyler, Johnathon Schaech, Steve Zahn, Ethan Embry and of course, Tom Hanks. TTYD also has a slew of suppporting characters and cameos played by Peter Scolari, Rita Wilson, Chris Isaak, Kevin Pollak, and many more. It was the birth of his production company PlayTone that is responsable for many quality productions including Band of Brothers and From The Earth To The Moon. I've seen this film a hundred times, but tonight on Encore Love I saw an alternate version I've never seen before.

It was very interesting. You would think that the original, being a pet project of Tom Hanks, would be exactly what Hanks hand in mind for the screen. This "Extended Edition" had greatly expanded characters, back story and music. The story was told in a deeper, more serious tone than the lighthearted "original". There were new camera angles, expanded dialogue, alternate scene takes and song versions. It was a completely different film.

It was very intriguing to see how this story would play out after seeing it countless times before and knowing it by heart. What it turned out to be was a treat. It was like opening your favorite Christmas present again for the first time and finding a brand new, more complex, full bodied and thought provoking version.

Mr. White... I had no idea!!!

I know there are miles of film on the cutting room floor, but I had no appreciation the difference in editing could make. It was an enlightening experience bordering upon an epiphany and I don't have one of those often.


Anonymous said...

I keep this out & sometimes just play it in the background while I work. Great flick. :aok

I missed the alternate version that you're speaking about though. Would have been interested in seeing that.


RPM said...

Look for the "Extended Edition". It's like they shot 2 different films.

Unknown said...

One of my top 10 as well. Sad thing is, I expected Steve Zahn to be as funny in all of his other films, and am usually disappointed.

I was in a band for quite some time, and I can definitely relate to a lot of the things these guys went through.