Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

Discuss films and filmmakers of the 20th century (and even a little of the 19th century). Threads may contain spoilers.
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gcgiles1dollarbin
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 3:38 am

Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#26 Post by gcgiles1dollarbin » Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:16 pm

domino harvey wrote:The Heartbreak Kid is about fifty times the masterpiece Mikey and Nicky is (though more than that, really, since anything times zero...)
Hey, I think you just wrote that Mikey and Nicky has zero value! :cry:

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domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#27 Post by domino harvey » Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:18 pm

It's not a bad film, but it's no masterpiece either (apologies to May and Cassavetes apologists)

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Cold Bishop
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#28 Post by Cold Bishop » Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:32 pm

A New Leaf is better than both. So there.

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menthymenthy
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#29 Post by menthymenthy » Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:48 pm

Cold Bishop wrote:A New Leaf is better than both. So there.
And we have a winner. I do agree.

Mikey and Nicky is mesmeric from start to finish though. Masterpiece? Yeah, I'll also give it that.

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gcgiles1dollarbin
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#30 Post by gcgiles1dollarbin » Mon Dec 20, 2010 3:14 am

But this is the best of all. (Sound at :18.)

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gcgiles1dollarbin
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#31 Post by gcgiles1dollarbin » Mon Dec 20, 2010 7:10 am

I wrote that Victor Schertzinger was forgotten, but now I realize he will soon be canonized by CC! From Gilbert and Sullivan to Crosby and Hope...

onedimension
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#32 Post by onedimension » Tue Jan 04, 2011 4:21 pm

Anyone know what's up with the Ishtar blu-ray? Originally slated to release today, but Amazon has now taken down that release date & a couple of other e-tailers (Target.com) say it won't ship for 2-4 weeks.

I hope it didn't get canned like the prior attempt at an Ishtar disc (one with special features, even!), and if it is delayed indefinitely, I hope it's like the BBS box - Criterion releases '3 Comedies by Elaine May'? (Kid, Leaf, Tar)

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criterionsnob
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#33 Post by criterionsnob » Wed Jan 05, 2011 10:00 pm


onedimension
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2008 4:35 pm

Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#34 Post by onedimension » Thu Jan 06, 2011 1:28 am

Bummer, I wonder if the CIA is behind it.

atcolomb
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 3:49 pm
Location: Round Lake, Illinois USA

Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#35 Post by atcolomb » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:49 am

Glad i recorderd it when it was broadcast on TCM-HD a few months ago. I had the same feeling when they announced the blu-ray release of John Houston's "Beat The Devil"....then nothing happened....bummer!

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Joe Buck
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2005 6:59 pm
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#36 Post by Joe Buck » Thu Jan 27, 2011 11:43 pm

Well, it's official. Amazon sent me an email and flat out cancelled my order. Ishtar on Blu-Ray is just a fantasy. NOW what do I have to live for?


:(

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Cronenfly
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#37 Post by Cronenfly » Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:25 am

Has anyone else managed to track down a copy of the Blu-Ray? I found a copy in a Sunrise (Canadian retailer), but it still seems to be MIA everywhere online...

Picture/sound quality seems fine from what I've watched so far and there are no special features.

Perkins Cobb
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 12:49 pm

Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#38 Post by Perkins Cobb » Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:50 pm

Did anyone see the director's cut of Ishtar that screened in New York at the 92nd Street Y in 2011, or at the Museum of the Moving Image last weekend? I'm curious about how it differs from the original version and, apart from Richard Brody's claim that it's shorter, I can't find any details on the net.

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dx23
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Re: Blu-ray, in General

#39 Post by dx23 » Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:23 am

Ishtar is coming on Blu-ray on 08/16/2013. This one wasn't even released on DVD!

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mfunk9786
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Re: Blu-ray, in General

#40 Post by mfunk9786 » Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:24 am

I'd say the hilarity is pretty deniable.

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knives
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Re: Blu-ray, in General

#41 Post by knives » Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:31 am

Let's hope they actually release this masterpiece this time.

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zedz
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#42 Post by zedz » Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:46 pm

It's not as bad as its reputation, sure, but 'masterpiece' seems like a helluva overreaction to me. Unless there's an unreleased director's cut lurking around that's at least five times funnier. For me, it plays like a fitfully amusing, mildly ambitious TV pilot, accidentally cast with big stars. What makes it a masterpiece, other than being critically mistreated?

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knives
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#43 Post by knives » Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:55 pm

I find the first half to be an absolute masterpiece on par with May's best. I can agree with you though in regards to the second half though even then there are at least some gags like the blind camel that always manage to make me laugh till I'm stupid. That said there is an alternate cut around.

onedimension
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#44 Post by onedimension » Thu Mar 07, 2013 3:10 pm

I thought this film was a masterpiece in my early 20's when I used to smoke a lot of pot and wanted to think I'd discovered something brilliant and gone against popular consensus. The first half is really good, though, in a dry way, and the second half I could never figure out. Occasional excellent cinematography..

Rumor I remember was that the DVD and/or blu-ray release was canceled a couple of times at the last minute because there were still execs around who held grudges..

stroszeck
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2005 10:42 pm

Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#45 Post by stroszeck » Mon Jul 22, 2013 1:57 pm

Finally shows up as a pre-order on amazon so it must be a real thing!

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Forrest Taft
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#46 Post by Forrest Taft » Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:55 pm

They have it in stock at importcds!

onedimension
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#47 Post by onedimension » Wed Aug 07, 2013 1:26 am

My blu came today, it looks good. Billed as 'director's cut', though I didn't notice any differences. Nothing else to be said about it beyond what's already in the thread..

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hearthesilence
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#48 Post by hearthesilence » Wed Aug 07, 2013 11:02 am

Richard Brody of the New Yorker mentioned this. About 2 years ago, she premiered the "director's cut" at the 92Y and supposedly it was shorter, but not by much. Supposedly she makes "rare" public appearances, but to be honest, they don't seem all that rare, at least not when you live in NYC. She was at that screening, she was at MoMA's screening of a restored 35mm print for Mikey & Nicky, and she even appeared with Mike Nichols at another screening of Ishtar about 5 years ago.

stroszeck
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#49 Post by stroszeck » Wed Aug 07, 2013 11:24 am

hearthesilence wrote:Richard Brody of the New Yorker mentioned this. About 2 years ago, she premiered the "director's cut" at the 92Y and supposedly it was shorter, but not by much. Supposedly she makes "rare" public appearances, but to be honest, they don't seem all that rare, at least not when you live in NYC. She was at that screening, she was at MoMA's screening of a restored 35mm print for Mikey & Nicky, and she even appeared with Mike Nichols at another screening of Ishtar about 5 years ago.
I don't get it, is she still in "movie jail?" The woman made some great pictures during her time and it seems like all these years later she still can't get a fair shake from how Ishtar ended up doing critically and commercially.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: Ishtar (Elaine May, 1987)

#50 Post by Roger Ryan » Wed Aug 07, 2013 12:23 pm

Well, she is 81 now. I have no idea if she has attempted to get any further films made, but making appearances at award dinners and museum screenings seems like a fine way to spend one's retirement.

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