Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

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Chris Seguin

Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Chris Seguin » Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:06 pm

The slash-and-burn editing that transformed ATOLL K into UTOPIA left massive gaps in plot and character motivation, all of which is better explained in the various European releases (including the UK release, ROBINSON CRUSOELAND). Over the next few days I'm going to post a few items that "fill the gaps" in the ATOLLian odyssey...

First is a scene exclusive to the Italian release, ATOLLO K, in which the lovable Giovanni Copini (Adriano Rimoldi) elaborates on his reasons for running away from it all. Apparently this flashback was filmed to accommodate Italian actor Guglielmo Barnabo (Italian release posters give him 7th billing after Luigi “Fraser” Tosi), as part of the French-Italian co-production agreement.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uCWD4CF-HkE

Btw, I’m going to use all of these posts to recommend Norbert Aping’s remarkable book “The Final Film of Laurel and Hardy - A Study of the Chaotic Making and Marketing of Atoll K”. I’ve simply never come across a more thoroughly researched and fascinating book on the production of a single film in my life. I can’t recommend it enough, even if you’re not a fan of the film. It’s a must for anyone who loves Laurel & Hardy and film comedy, and I really hope I’m just preaching to the converted here.

http://www.mcfarlandpub.com/book-2.php? ... 864-3302-5

Get a sample taste here…

http://www.eurospanbookstore.com/displa ... 82&dc=2000

Chris

Paul E. Gierucki
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Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Paul E. Gierucki » Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:33 pm

I, too, have always been fascinated by this film and have been collecting various film prints, stills, lobbies, posters and memorabilia from it for nearly twenty years! I only wish that I had known about the book sooner as I would have gladly shared my archive. Alas, the timing was wrong and it was not to be.

Some years ago I purchased one of Babe and Lucille's personal scrapbooks which contains letters from the Italian government concerning scheduling, travel documents, their place cards from various dinner functions, original artwork, candid snapshots and many other wonderful items from the making of this film. At some point the definitive DVD collection will be produced and hopefully I will be able to make the items available via that medium. Better still, perhaps we could convince fellow mafioso Randy Skretvedt to once again revise and update his L&H book. Now that is a project to which I would gladly contribute.

As to the Italian version of Atoll K, I've always thought that Ollie's voice was just perfect. Proper timber, cadence and so forth. Stan's voice, however, is not unlike nails on a chalkboard...

-- Paul E. Gierucki

Yair Solan
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Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Yair Solan » Fri Jul 17, 2009 3:39 pm

Chris Seguin wrote:Btw, I’m going to use all of these posts to recommend Norbert Aping’s remarkable book “The Final Film of Laurel and Hardy - A Study of the Chaotic Making and Marketing of Atoll K”. I’ve simply never come across a more thoroughly researched and fascinating book on the production of a single film in my life. I can’t recommend it enough, even if you’re not a fan of the film. It’s a must for anyone who loves Laurel & Hardy and film comedy, and I really hope I’m just preaching to the converted here.

http://www.mcfarlandpub.com/book-2.php? ... 864-3302-5


I too must echo Chris's sentiments on Norbert Aping's ATOLL K book, which I am making my way through now - to say it's meticulously researched would definitely be an understatement. Regardless of what you may think of the film itself - I was at first suspicious of reading an entire book dedicated to ATOLL K (though it was, strangely enough, my first Laurel & Hardy film) - the book is still a must read.

Paul E. Gierucki wrote:Better still, perhaps we could convince fellow mafioso Randy Skretvedt to once again revise and update his L&H book. Now that is a project to which I would gladly contribute.


From what I understand, Randy is currently working on the third edition of L&H: THE MAGIC BEHIND THE MOVIES.

Chris Seguin

Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Chris Seguin » Fri Jul 17, 2009 3:58 pm

Yair, I remember you mentioning before that UTOPIA was your first encounter with Stan & Ollie. I find it interesting that you weren't turned off by all the factors that usually condemn it -- Stan's sickly appearance, the terrible dubbing, the heavy-handed plot. I always fear that the dollar-store ubiquity of this title will turn off more potential fans than it will win, but I also believe that the boys' charm shines through no matter what.
Chris

Yair Solan
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Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Yair Solan » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:09 pm

Chris Seguin wrote:Yair, I remember you mentioning before that UTOPIA was your first encounter with Stan & Ollie. I find it interesting that you weren't turned off by all the factors that usually condemn it -- Stan's sickly appearance, the terrible dubbing, the heavy-handed plot. I always fear that the dollar-store ubiquity of this title will turn off more potential fans than it will win, but I also believe that the boys' charm shines through no matter what.


Yeah, it's strange that I started off with UTOPIA, but then again, Laurel & Hardy were on AMC every week back then so any bad taste left over from UTOPIA quickly subsided after watching ANOTHER FINE MESS. The cheapo VHS copy of UTOPIA heralded it as their last film, so Stan's appearance may not have been a shock...I don't remember if I even realized how sickly he looked, but I certainly remember the awful dubbing. I definitely enjoying the film in moments - I feel like I really wanted to like them - so luckily I had opportunities to see their work after viewing UTOPIA, but I'd hate to think that now with the difficulty of seeing most of their Hal Roach films, I'd give up on the team after UTOPIA.

Richard M Roberts
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Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Richard M Roberts » Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:49 am

Yeah, it's strange that I started off with UTOPIA, but then again, Laurel & Hardy were on AMC every week back then so any bad taste left over from UTOPIA quickly subsided after watching ANOTHER FINE MESS. The cheapo VHS copy of UTOPIA heralded it as their last film, so Stan's appearance may not have been a shock...I don't remember if I even realized how sickly he looked, but I certainly remember the awful dubbing. I definitely enjoying the film in moments - I feel like I really wanted to like them - so luckily I had opportunities to see their work after viewing UTOPIA, but I'd hate to think that now with the difficulty of seeing most of their Hal Roach films, I'd give up on the team after UTOPIA.
[/quote]

Hey, the first Laurel and Hardy film I ever saw was GREAT GUNS, and the cool thing is that it's nearly completely upwards from there.

RICHARD M ROBERTS

Richard M Roberts
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Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Richard M Roberts » Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:50 am

Richard M Roberts wrote:
Yeah, it's strange that I started off with UTOPIA, but then again, Laurel & Hardy were on AMC every week back then so any bad taste left over from UTOPIA quickly subsided after watching ANOTHER FINE MESS. The cheapo VHS copy of UTOPIA heralded it as their last film, so Stan's appearance may not have been a shock...I don't remember if I even realized how sickly he looked, but I certainly remember the awful dubbing. I definitely enjoying the film in moments - I feel like I really wanted to like them - so luckily I had opportunities to see their work after viewing UTOPIA, but I'd hate to think that now with the difficulty of seeing most of their Hal Roach films, I'd give up on the team after UTOPIA.


Hey, the first Laurel and Hardy film I ever saw was GREAT GUNS, and the cool thing is that it's nearly completely upwards if you start from there.

RICHARD M ROBERTS

Chris Seguin

Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Chris Seguin » Sat Jul 18, 2009 1:26 pm

Y'know, I couldn't tell you my first Laurel & Hardy, but I'm pretty sure it was AIR RAID WARDENS. Or maybe it was BULLFIGHTERS. I know discovering Stan & Ollie through their later films was the case for several people; again, proof that their inherent charm overcomes age and poor material. And you're right, it was all an upward discovery from there!
Chris

Chris Seguin

Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Chris Seguin » Sat Jul 18, 2009 4:19 pm

Next up is another clip from ATOLLO K. Cherie has given Fraser an ultimatum: Show up to see her perform at Club Cockatoo, or it’s over. (Spoiler alert: He doesn’t show.)
This version is slightly shorter than the French version, but longer than the German version, which has all emotion carefully dissected from it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_taLj77hYaU

Jim Reid
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Re: Atoll K ephemera, detritus and what-not

Postby Jim Reid » Sun Jul 19, 2009 10:23 am

My first L&H film was one of the Youngson films. Whichever one (the title eludes me at the moment) has the clips from Two Tars.


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