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Thread: Mandos in the Movies

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    Since I bought my first mandolin six months ago - and have been subsequently teaching myself how to play this lovely instrument - I have noticed more mandolins and their unique music in many movies. Captain Correli's Mandolin springs to everyone's mind, of course, but how many other movies of mandolin note (pun) can we name. I went to see Ella Enchanted. Guys, it really is just for little girls, and big litte girls such as myself. Anyway, Ella was ordered to practice her mandolin. #Which she dutifully did, as she was under a spell. #However, she played it with a bow. #Hmmm. It can be done. I watched Ragtime on the idiot-box Friday night. Someone was playing a mando in the core area of 1904 Philidelphia as Evelyn Nesbit search the deserted flat of her Jewish artist friend. There was a mando being played by the hillbilly musicians in Cold Mountain. ( I think.) Anyhow, people, name your favorite and not so favorite mandolin employed movies.
    You are only young once, but you can be immature forever.

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    I recently purchased "Kung Fu", the complete first season, which has an eoisode where a young Jody Foster (maybe 8 years old) is playing an A-style mandolin. #Caine, captivated, tells her it has the sound of "running water".

    Then he asks if it's a Lute! #

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    Registered User John Flynn's Avatar
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    Re: The A-style in "Kung Fu." I don't think there were A style mandolins in the Wild West timeframe. The character probably should have been playing a bowlback.

    Anyhow, I saw a "Bollywood" film, one of those the big musical extravangnzas produced in India, with Indian actors, and subtitled. Sorry, I forgot the title. The main character carried a black A style in his backpack and played it several times in the movie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by
    Staramouche Posted on Sep. 25 2004, 12:49

    I recently purchased "Kung Fu", the complete first season, which has an eoisode where a young Jody Foster (maybe 8 years old) is playing an A-style mandolin. #Caine, captivated, tells her it has the sound of "running water".
    When you can name the brand of mandolin she was playing it will be time for you to go Grasshopper. #

    GVD
    GVD

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    Registered User John Rosett's Avatar
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    "king of the gypsies" has a ton of mandolin-played by david grisman, with a little bit of andy statman, not to mention stephane grappelli and matt glaser on fiddles, and tony rice on guitar. there's a great scene where grisman is playing solo for a dancer. he also wrote the soundtrack.
    dave appollan stared in at least one movie, although i've never seen it.
    i saw a movie once that was probably from the late 30's where the main character played mando. his relatives wanted him to give it up and get a "real job". there's a scene that i'll never forget where he takes his fern F5, throws it in a drawer, and slams it. ouch! anyone know the name of that movie?
    john
    "it's not in bad taste, if it's funny" - john waters

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    O Brother, Where Art Thou is one of my favorite movies, and features several mandolin appearances
    The way into the human soul is through the strings of a mandolin

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    I think A Mighty Wind featured a Gibson A and a Collings A.
    Estne volumen in toga, an solum tibi libet me videre?

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    Correct, Grasshopper:
    The sound of running water
    Pours forth from her strings
    Estne volumen in toga, an solum tibi libet me videre?

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    This Is Spinal Tap in the great#"Stonehenge" sequence. (Has Jethro Tull ever played this tune as an encore?)

    Talvisota (The Winter War) #Finns vs. Russians in the 1939 war. #Finnish soldier occasionally plays a bowl-back.

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    "The Godfather" has a guy playing an F-5 in the wedding orchestra; Bollywood films are full of mandolin music; loud, electric, and preferably played through a cracked speaker amp, although any "playing" done by the actors is just that, they don't even try to look authentic, which is refreshing in our world of videos where the artist is forced to lip-sync material that they have previously recorded, trying to remember how they felt when they were in the sound studio....
    But Amsterdam was always good for grieving
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    And Paris never was my kinda town
    So I walked around with the Ft. Worth Blues

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    Richard J.
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    In an episode of "The Partridge Family" , an older character (I think it's Mrs. Partridge's dad) has a disagreement with his wife and makes up by playing "Bye, Bye Blackbird" on a mandolin in a small club while singing. His playing amounted to keeping one finger at one position through the entire song.
    "The older I get, the better I was!"

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    "It is the merging of the instrument and the player that creates the music, alone each is silent"
    # # # # -Master Po

    #
    # #"A bird can fly but a fly can't bird"
    # # # # -Master Pooh

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    King of the Gypsies...........has Grapelli, Buell Neidlinger, Andy Statman, John Carlini, and David Grisman. Oh yeah & Brooke Shields.

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    Of course, High Lonesome, a movie which celebrates the music and contributions of Bill Monroe, and has many clips of other mando pickers; someone mentioned Dave Apollon in the movies - there's a video floating around of Dave's movies, shorts of the segments which feature the master in his movie roles from the 30's - fantastic stuff.

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    "Ella Enchanted". great laughs in that film
    Ha, ha! keep time: how sour sweet music is,
    When time is broke and no proportion kept!
    --William Shakespeare

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    "Peggy Sue Got Married" featured Rudy Cipolla playing a snakehead A Gibson while wearing some sort of silly Masonic hat. His playing helped helped Kathleen Turner travel back in time. Works for me, too!

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    Not seen but heard

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    I saw one in Sanford & Son(still love those shows) on a shelf in Fred Sanford's house.

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    Okay, I'll admit this is one I haven't seen (nor do I think I'd want to), but a quick check on the Internet Movie Database came up with this winner:

    Meng gui da sha (1987)

    Summary: A police sting takes place in a haunted apartment building. The sting goes bad when a female ghost crashes the party. Lots of chase scenes involving floating heads and headless bodies.. and, oh yes.... toy helicopters. And then it gets weird...A band of Chinese elves save the day (one of them plays a mandolin).
    John Craton
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    There is a fine quintet for mandolin and string quartet in The Royal Tannenbaums that is erroneously credited to the baroque orchestra Il Giardino Armonico in the closing credits (I'd love to know who it really was and what they were playing). Of course, the soundtrack for Kramer vs. Kramer is laden with Vivaldi mandolin music. There is plenty of mandolin in Cold Mountain, which I found particularly amusing given that there is no documentation of mandolins on this continent at that time, and the mandolin in question looked very much like a ca. 1920s German instrument. I saw a groovy old Fred Astaire movie that involved a good deal of taunting for some poor square who, evidently inspired by the past successes of Appolon, insisted on playing his mandolin publically comfortably past the mandolin's golden era. I don't recall the name of the movie, but I know Neil Gladd does.

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    The not so good movie Heartbreakers with Gene Hackman and Jeniffer Love Hewitt has Sigourney Weaver singing Back in the USSR in a Russian restaurant with a balalaika ensemble with mandolins. Rocky III has Rocky working out with a band behind him and a mandolin player with an F-style instrument.
    Dwight

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    I think the film that Mandorose is referring to (where the fern gets tossed into the drawer) is called "Second Chorus".It Seems to me it was made in the mid-late 30s. I can't tell you much more about it, but I remember that the guy who's the mandolin player loses the gig. Someone should jump in soon with better details.
    -archie

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    Last Waltz?

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    Gee-whillikers!That's a lot of mando-movies. I forgot about Kramer Vs. Kramer. (Now why can't the Tablature fairies transpose some Vivaldi on this site? It's long over due. )Anyway, I would love to see that 1930's movies about the prodigal-son mando player. Those old films are really neat.
    You are only young once, but you can be immature forever.

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    Quote Originally Posted by (archie @ Sep. 27 2004, 20:38)
    I think the film that Mandorose is referring to (where the fern gets tossed into the drawer) is called "Second Chorus"...Someone should jump in soon with better details.
    Better details

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