Richard Dutcher no longer a practicing Mormon

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BeeDub
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Postby BeeDub » Tue 24 Apr, 2007 01:02 pm

bCurt wrote:When I read of a filmmaker complaining about the Church productions such as Legacy and Testaments I wonder why they haven't made their own if they think they can do better.


But... Dutcher DID make better movies than "Legacy" and "Testaments." And, given the limitations listed, would very definitely have been able to do Merrill one (or more) better.

It's true, the best revenge to take against a bad movie is to make a better movie, but this comment sounds eerily similar to some of the angry letters Eric recieves - "You can't criticize such-and-such a movie because you've never made one yourself!"

One does not necessarily have to have talent in a particular area in order to have good taste. Just sayin'.
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Postby Lowdoggy Dogg » Tue 24 Apr, 2007 03:13 pm

I consider myself an intelligent critic, though not an expert. I also think it is possible to enjoy a film despite its limitations. I also think the Church has done a fine job with its films, whose purpose is to invite the Spirit. Some of the moments are unintentionally comedic, but there is truth there and that is what resonates with people looking for it.

Someone mentioned the true stories that are neglected when you create fictional characters. The danger is that when you take a very skeletal story (show me a Book of Mormon story that is sufficiently fleshed out to make an hour long film that is true to the text) and dramatize elements beyond what the scriptures stipulate you create fodder for Anti-Mormonism.

I enjoyed both films when I saw them the first time. I think they accomplish their purpose quite well, and it isn't to impress active members who are a bit jaded by their familiarity with the restored gospel.

Moreover, true or false, Dutcher's criticism's are petty.

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Postby WiseNLucky » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 04:29 am

bCurt wrote:WiseNLucky - you can purchase both Legacy and Testaments through LDSCatalog.com for $4 each (shipping included). Should you not like them, the $8 you lost is not a big deal and perhaps you can pass them on to someone who might.


Thanks for the info. I will see about getting them and maybe pass them on to someone or the ward librarian (my wife) if that seems appropriate. Without having seen them, I wouldn't know.
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Postby shrff » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 09:59 am

Lowdoggy Dogg wrote:show me a Book of Mormon story that is sufficiently fleshed out to make an hour long film that is true to the text


As a sidebar, there are at least two:

1) The exodus of Lehi and company to the promised land
2) Captain Moroni's war
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Postby Lowdoggy Dogg » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 03:12 pm

shrff wrote:
Lowdoggy Dogg wrote:show me a Book of Mormon story that is sufficiently fleshed out to make an hour long film that is true to the text


As a sidebar, there are at least two:

1) The exodus of Lehi and company to the promised land
2) Captain Moroni's war


Great stories, and I do admit that they would make good hour long films (or longer) or really bad ones (see Book of Mormon movie), but they might not achieve the Church's purpose, which was to share about the Restoration (with Legacy) and about the testamentary nature of the Book of Mormon (with the Testaments).

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Postby EricDSnider » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 03:21 pm

shrff wrote:
Lowdoggy Dogg wrote:show me a Book of Mormon story that is sufficiently fleshed out to make an hour long film that is true to the text


As a sidebar, there are at least two:

1) The exodus of Lehi and company to the promised land
2) Captain Moroni's war



Those storylines are complete enough to flesh out a film, but you'd still have to write -- i.e., make up -- dialogue and auxiliary characters and so forth. The Book of Mormon in general doesn't have enough direct quotes from people to fill a screenplay, and writing fictional dialogue to go along with the scriptural dialogue is almost always a bad idea, because it's always gonna sound fake.

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Postby Lowdoggy Dogg » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 05:34 pm

EricDSnider wrote:
shrff wrote:
Lowdoggy Dogg wrote:show me a Book of Mormon story that is sufficiently fleshed out to make an hour long film that is true to the text


As a sidebar, there are at least two:

1) The exodus of Lehi and company to the promised land
2) Captain Moroni's war



Those storylines are complete enough to flesh out a film, but you'd still have to write -- i.e., make up -- dialogue and auxiliary characters and so forth. The Book of Mormon in general doesn't have enough direct quotes from people to fill a screenplay, and writing fictional dialogue to go along with the scriptural dialogue is almost always a bad idea, because it's always gonna sound fake.


That too.

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Postby The Don » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 06:21 pm

Lowdoggy Dogg wrote:
EricDSnider wrote:
shrff wrote:
Lowdoggy Dogg wrote:show me a Book of Mormon story that is sufficiently fleshed out to make an hour long film that is true to the text


As a sidebar, there are at least two:

1) The exodus of Lehi and company to the promised land
2) Captain Moroni's war



Those storylines are complete enough to flesh out a film, but you'd still have to write -- i.e., make up -- dialogue and auxiliary characters and so forth. The Book of Mormon in general doesn't have enough direct quotes from people to fill a screenplay, and writing fictional dialogue to go along with the scriptural dialogue is almost always a bad idea, because it's always gonna sound fake.


That too.


"The Book of Mormon Movie" was a perfect example of how to do it completely and utterly wrong.
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Postby Lady Celtic » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 08:59 pm

What about in Third Nephi where Nephi reveals the chief judge's murderer? That has pretty good direct quotes, some side characters, and a lot of running back and forth. I think it would make a fun and spiritual movie, if done correctly.
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Postby BeeDub » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 09:14 pm

Lady Celtic wrote:What about in Third Nephi where Nephi reveals the chief judge's murderer? That has pretty good direct quotes, some side characters, and a lot of running back and forth. I think it would make a fun and spiritual movie, if done correctly.


I think they did a seminary video of that one. I seem to recall...
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The Don
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Postby The Don » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 11:02 pm

BeeDub wrote:
Lady Celtic wrote:What about in Third Nephi where Nephi reveals the chief judge's murderer? That has pretty good direct quotes, some side characters, and a lot of running back and forth. I think it would make a fun and spiritual movie, if done correctly.


I think they did a seminary video of that one. I seem to recall...


Yes they did. And, as I recall, it was well done.
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Lady Celtic
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Postby Lady Celtic » Thu 26 Apr, 2007 08:22 am

Edit: It was Helaman 7-9, not Third Nephi.

And I also vaguely recall a seminary video on it (which explains why I picture actual people in my head as I read the story), but that doesn't stop me from thinking that a story can be told in more than one way. Thus the remake genre. *goes off to write a script*
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Postby Ryan Reeder » Thu 26 Apr, 2007 03:15 pm

My high school drama teacher, Joe Batzel, was in that one; he's also the father character in the framing story of the Joseph Smith movie at the Legacy theater.

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Postby bCurt » Mon 30 Apr, 2007 01:57 pm

But... Dutcher DID make better movies than "Legacy" and "Testaments." And, given the limitations listed, would very definitely have been able to do Merrill one (or more) better.


I see where you are coming from BeeDub (regarding my question). That is not exactly where I was trying to go. Sure, Dutcher has made some better movies than "Legacy" and "Testaments" but they do not fit the requirements that Legacy and Testaments had to meet - time and broad appeal both in and out of the church. I'm definitely not saying better movies cannot be made that meet that criteria, as I believe there can be.

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Postby Momma Snider » Mon 30 Apr, 2007 06:05 pm

I was just thinking the same thing on my way home from work. I haven't seen any of Dutcher's movies, but my impression is that they would not have served the purpose. Not that he couldn't have, just that that was not his objective.

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Postby jensendude » Wed 04 Jul, 2007 09:40 pm

I remember that article, all I could think of was that it sounded alot like Michael Jordan saying he was going to quit basketball and play baseball.

Honestly, I thought it was kinda cute that Mr. Dutcher basically said that he no longer practices mormonism on account of his prayers and his films.

Hmmm Maybe the next time I get a speeding ticket, I can goto court and say "your honor thru careful study of the law and my prayers I have determined that you can't prove that the camera that caught me speeding was in facted staged, therefore I am a free man???!!!"

(hey has anyone heard of BASEKETBALL)
I'd love to play that.

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Matt
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Postby Matt » Thu 05 Jul, 2007 02:02 pm

Honestly, I thought it was kinda cute that Mr. Dutcher basically said that he no longer practices mormonism on account of his prayers and his films.
So prayer is only valid when the answer agrees with jensendude?
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Postby jensendude » Thu 05 Jul, 2007 03:26 pm

Matt wrote:
Honestly, I thought it was kinda cute that Mr. Dutcher basically said that he no longer practices mormonism on account of his prayers and his films.
So prayer is only valid when the answer agrees with jensendude?


No, what I am saying is that it just sounded to me like Dutcher was saying he knew more than God (as far as being a memeber of his church) and that God agreeded with him (on account of his films.)

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Matt
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Postby Matt » Mon 09 Jul, 2007 06:17 pm

I don't see where you get that. He said "The private answers to the questions I have asked in my prayers, and in my films, have led me on an unexpected journey, a spiritual path which may ultimately prove incompatible with Mormon orthodoxy."

He doesn't say what the nature of those private answers are, but there is no indication that he believes he knows more than God. It sounds like he's come to his conclusions through prayerful consideration just like most Mormons I know.
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Postby glaxo » Tue 10 Jul, 2007 02:59 pm

BeeDub wrote:
Momma Snider wrote:But did not Dutcher first attack Merrill's work?


Viewers should leave those films weak in the knees, their minds reeling, their spirits soaring. Film has the power to do that.




You mean like God's Army? That film was probably one of the most boring movies I have ever seen, and I am easily entertained.


As far as Merrill, I like the guy and he makes great movies. As always, walk in a guys shoes and then judge right? Dutcher really struck a blow to Merrill and he responded. Plus, I think his apology was heart felt and genuine. How many people REALLY apologize like that. Most of us apologize but during the apology try to re-explain why we are right in the first place. Merrill would have none of this.

Dutcher has quit an eqo anyway. I remember when his first film came out, his website had a quote from Pres S.W. Kimball saying something like there would be a time when LDS people would make great movies and be influential or something like that.....anyway, Dutcher said he was that person and now was the time. Oh Brother, give me freakin' break.


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