Heaven’s Gate Minute by Minute – 43 of 2,478,949

19 Aug

43 of 2,478,949

The bovine silent film comedy continues as John Hurt stumbles into the next room, stealing a cigar from a sleeping man slumped in a chair. The soundtrack lets this minute down. A trombone making ‘barrr-ruump’ sounds to accentuate each moment of perfectly executed physical comedy is lacking. This sequence should also have been shot in monochrome, instead of yellow-brown hued colour film. Why does it appear so yellow? Perhaps Michael Cimino spilled tea on the final print. Or maybe he deliberately soaked it in tea to give the illusion of age, like when you dunk a map you’ve drawn in tea to make it seem ye olde for a school project. Those were the days! To give your map a further air of authenticity you’d take a lighter and scorch the edges as though every map from the 17th and 18th century suffered some minor form of fire damage. It’s how can you tell if an old map is the genuine article – the more scorch marks, the older the map. This is why few maps survive from medieval times. As they age the maps eventually burn away, which is what inevitably happens to your school project as your subtle scorching turns inferno, forcing you to run to the sink to put it out. You’re left with some cinders, no homework and a baking tray of undrinkable tea.

With his Charlie Chaplin homage complete, Mr. Hurt heads upstairs to investigate a strange noise that sounds like billiard balls clanking together. I wonder who could be shooting pool up there? I bet it’s James. Anyone want to bet me? No? Didn’t think so. It’s almost certain to be him and I wouldn’t take on that bet. Perhaps I’ll go see if Giles next door would like to – he’s a gambling addict. I think that’s why his wife left him. Easy money… It’s not the only reason she left. They’d been drifting apart for years and Giles burning down the cellar in an attempt to age their wine didn’t help.

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