That's My Boy: The Tolerable Cut

If you’re an internet user (and I know that many of you are) and a film fanatic odds are you’ve come across Steven Soderbergh’s experimental re-edits of certain features. There’s his juxtaposition of Hitchcock’s Psycho with Gus Van Sant’s experimental revival version, Psychos. The black and whiting and desoundification of Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark in order to observe the visual staging. And of course the most bold of his escapades Heaven’s Gate: The Butcher’s Cut, wherein nearly half of the film has been removed and sequences have been drastically retooled or moved to entirely different places in time.

It’s The Butcher’s Cut that got me wondering as I came across it around the time I decided to watch That’s My Boy starring Adam Sandler. (Stay with me on this.) When That’s My Boy was released I glossed over it as it appeared to be terrible like the majority of Sandler’s self indulgent faire but a few people here and there gave a semi-encouraging “It’s not as bad as you think” thumbs up. So one fateful evening I gave in and sat back to watch… one of the most abrasive, distracting and abusive comedies I’ve ever seen. Yet it had its moments.

Stumbling onto The Butcher’s Cut then got me thinking. “Is there a good movie here? Would it be possible to trim the fat and end up with something worth watching?” So armed with good intentions, occasional free time and the desire to get some cutting practice in I started chopping.

I removed gags I thought didn’t work or ruined the flow of the scene/sequence/film, subtracted repetitious jokes, lines or events that seemed too outlandish and cut down on as much unnecessary vitriol as possible. (Seriously. Why was everyone in this movie such an asshole?) There was a lot more that I would’ve liked to remove or rearrange but taking too much in some cases would’ve ruined what flow existed and/or rendered other moments completely nonsensical.

I’ve cropped. I’ve retimed. I’ve messed with the audio. I’ve changed music cues. And in doing so I’ve come as close to finding the good movie within That’s My Boy as I can possibly get. It may not be as elegant an exercise as The Butcher’s Cut but I think it’s a valid exploration of how or why editing, thematic, etc. decisions are made when creating a feature film.

With all that said here is That’s My Boy: The Tolerable Cut.*

*The Tolerable Cut had its day and has since been removed from the internet at Columbia Pictures’ request. What’re ya gonna do? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

No comments

Powered by Blogger.