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Thread: The Butler

  1. #1
    Senior Member marc26's Avatar
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    The Butler

    I finally got around to renting this is really enjoyed it.
    I think it got overshadowed by 12 Years A Slave coming out right after it, but i liked The Butler better

    I just love time period pieces where they interweave the personal story into the happenings of that period
    I am also fascinated by the Civil Rights Movement, what volatile and changing time that was.

    I didn't think the acting was anything superb, just thought it was a good watchable movie

  2. #2
    Senior Member nelsonone's Avatar
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    hmmmm...found it to be one log cliche after another...especially the civil rights stuff....that was just cartoonish blacksploitation stuff...I had to laugh aloud when the son comes home in the panther beret with his afro'ed GF

    it was a pretty decent device pitting the older generation establishment ideals as personified by the father (the Butler) against the revolutionary aspirations of the black civil rights movement through the son....but it never seemed to scrape out much depth apart from just putting caricatures on the screen

    what i liked about the film was the casting/performances of the Presidents....I really enjoyed Robin Williams' Roosevelt, Schrieber's LBJ, Cusack's Nixon, Alan Rickman's Reagan and Jane Fonda's Nancy

    Whittaker of course the consumate actor plays The Butler well through the generations, Opra has a few good moments as the "mother/wife" reflecting the social mores of a black woman through the times...I especially enjoyed her moments when she let go and was dancing to video clips from Soul Train on the TV and dealing with Terence Howard's excellent "back door man"...and Gooding Jnr puts in a pretty good fellow butler and friend as does Lenny Kravitz (surprisingly for me) in support of that

    12 Years a Slave....well that was just one long narrative..dragging up every movie "slave" portrayal ever visited by Hollywood..I failed on being marvelled by this one I'm afraid

  3. #3
    Senior Member marc26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nelsonone View Post
    12 Years a Slave....well that was just one long narrative..dragging up every movie "slave" portrayal ever visited by Hollywood..I failed on being marvelled by this one I'm afraid
    that was my thoughts exactly
    i understood it was based on a true story but all it was a portrayal of slave life

    as for the cliches in The Butler, i guess i am just enthralled with the Civil Rights Movement so wasn't focusing on much anything else
    but when you think about it, there was young black kids showing up at their parents dressed as Black Panthers

    the one thing that caught my cynic attention is when they conveniently found their way in MLK's inner circle

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    Butler was very very loosely based on a true story. By loosely I mean most if it was fiction which annoyed me after I found out.

  5. #5
    Senior Member nelsonone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc26 View Post
    the one thing that caught my cynic attention is when they conveniently found their way in MLK's inner circle
    MLK's, The Freedom Rider's, Malcom X's, The Panther's etc etc and the other son's Vietnam...and then on Dad's side you have all the presidents and their politics.....555

    i lived through the 60's and 70's...saw this sorta stuff on TV and rode the rollercoaster of emotions with it every night...so for me its a very "told" story...this portrayal of it for me had nothing much to add

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