my Movie

Movie Details

Title:   That Thing You Do!
Director:   Tom Hanks
Year:   1996
Genre:   Non-Musical Music Film
Times Seen:   2
Last Seen:   02.01.08

Other Movies Seen By This Director (1)
- Larry Crowne

Notes History
Date Viewed Venue Note
02.01.08DVD It's no secret that I like this film a lot, perhaps love it even. It's long been one of those movies that I never have trouble watching to the end if i ever come across it on TV or whatever and get in the mood to watch it about once a year. It's not like deep art or anything but for the majority of the movie it's fun kids having the time of their lives so it's fun to watch. I remember when it came out everyone said that the song gets so annoying by the end that they hated it and I always saw that as a very consciouss decision on the part of Tom Hanks. The song starts out fun and catchy and slowly slides into the realm of overplayed annoyance just like any "hit song." And aside from that, it's also a fairly pleasant period film dwelling on the high gloss of the mid-60s. I just like it a lot.

So I got the DVD for christmas which really made me exciting. This is a full-on two-disc special edition with a new director's cut of the film! And this isn't like the Commando cut which adds maybe 3 minutes of an extended scene and extra frames of violence, this is like a half hour of added material making the film an epic two hour twenty running time! I'm glad it also has the theatrical cut because that version has an energy that makes watching it completely effortless like it takes 20 minutes to watch. That said, I really really enjoyed the new cut as well.

Most of the new material fills in some of the blanks that you just assume in the theatrical cut. It's still interesting to see and acts to solidify each of the characters, give them more of an arc and backstory, and supply that much more of an impression of the era and the bright-eyed zeal that these kids see the world with. There are also a few revelations like hints of the private life of Hanks' Mr. White and an awesome cameo by Robert "Bunny Colvin of The Wire" Wisdom. I think most significantly however is Shades' conclusion. I always enjoyed the final moment where he's just playing around on his drums after his band evaporated and Del Paxton walks in and jams with him, like that's really the ultimate gift of this journey that he gets to jam with one of his music gods, but this cut takes it one step further with him recording an interview with Del and a bunch of guys with him sitting in and taking the tapes to his new job as radio DJ for a jazz station run by Clint Howard. His future goes from choosing to bum around LA looking for work as a session drummer to radio DJ with jazz expertise and I enjoyed that a lot.

All in all the added footage gives the film more of an epic feel which I never ever expected would come of this underrated Sunday afternoon flick. I just wish Hanks had a commentary track to talk about his first experiences as a writer and director and supply a little backstory on what happened with the cuts (although I'd guess they were all due to time as 145 minutes is a bit long for light entertainment) and how he found the cast, most of whom have gone on to larger careers. Still, I'll take what I can get and am a very happy puppy to see so much new material for a film I've always liked a lot, perhaps loved.
01.29.05DVR i have massive amounts of love for this movie. It's so great. I have actually thought about a scenario where i pretend to be a movie journalist and go to a junket for a tom hanks movie just so i can screw the interview and talk to him about this movie for ten minutes instead. There's tons more to say but I'm sure I'll get into it on future viewings.
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