TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

by Arturo Perez-Reverte

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radwen
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Re: TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

Unread postby radwen » Wed Aug 20, 2008 8:53 am

Parlez -

That is a very interesting take on the two Corsos and one I hadn't thought of before.

I think I need to watch the movie again :lol:
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Re: TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

Unread postby suec » Wed Aug 20, 2008 10:38 am

I liked both Corsos. Lucas is funnier, but I also found him a little crass at times. Dean is a smoother operator. I prefer his non-verbal reaction to Liana’s offer than Lucas’s comment, which was cruder. I also prefer Dean’s way of dealing with the baroness. Lucas’s blackmail seemed a bit excessive; Dean’s insincere charm is just brilliant, one of my favourite Johnny moments, and his gift of the engraving copies effective.
I think the drinking is presented differently. Both drink a lot, but with Dean, I get the impression with him that it’s habitual, because he can’t be bothered to eat properly, or to kill time, or because he’s nervous. With Lucas, he seems to need it. But then I think he is more needy generally.
Lucas has the passion for the Waterloo thing and his ancestor, also Nikon, showing his capacity to feel something. But he’s also sharper, more aggressive. Some of that is down to how other characters are presented differently, such as Lucas striking Liana and disarming her, whereas she knocks Dean out. But there’s also the way he hits Flavio and the way he speaks. He’s pretty sharp with Borja, pointing that something is his job. Dean can be just as rude, but I get the impression it’s less motivated by strength of feeling, and more by indifference. Dean seems to be more in the line of the hardboiled detective. I also wonder how much reading he does for pleasure. Lucas is quoting a lot; we don’t see that with Dean.
I remember Lucas as being a bit of a snob. There are a few times when he dismisses someone or something as a “vulgar” this or that, which we don’t get with Dean. But perhaps it is more that he tends to think in rather rigid ways, pigeon holing and jumping to conclusions. He might also be pandering to others’ snobbery too, for that matter, such as with Replinger. He also seems much more sociable. We read about him socialising with Flavio, whereas in the film, the relationship is focussed more on the professional aspect. Sure, he’s friendly with the bookseller and trusts him enough to leave the Nine Gates with him, but that’s about it. I can’t imagine Dean being in the Club of Nantucket Harpooners. Lucas has a reasonably successful relationship with Makarova and he helped out when one of the women was arrested. None of that is in the film. So, Lucas comes across as being a nicer guy there. Also, he interacts with far more people professionally, although I guess that is down to the need to streamline things for the film. Dean is more of a loner. That’s there with Lucas to some extent. But I think it’s more pronounced with Dean. There are a lot of one-shots, especially in the early part of the film, that mark him as a loner. Even with the two-shots, there is space between the characters or a visual marker, or the frame is constructed to show the relationship as being off-key. He is pretty much insulated from anyone else.
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Re: TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

Unread postby Liz » Wed Aug 20, 2008 1:42 pm

Parlez and suec, I think these are great points:

That Lucas is more into the hunt or game than Dean and that Dean is more of a loner than Lucas.
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Re: TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

Unread postby gemini » Wed Aug 20, 2008 6:06 pm

I agree with Kitty, that I didn't feel Emmanuelle Seigner and Johnny had chemistry in the film. I do think she was selected for the film for her mysterious looks. The girl in the book seemed more innocent and more dangerous if you pay close attention to what she says so it is left to the reader to decide which she really is.

I do think that Polanski tried to make Dean both good and evil. Earlier Dean tries to save Liana Taillfer when Boris tries to kill her in the film ( I don't remember that being in the book) and he even attempts to pull Boris out of the circle of flames at one point but then in the end he seems to have went over and made sure he embraced evil. I think Lucas in the book was always treading evil, some of his conversation with the girl really seem like he is aware of the evil and it doesn't stop him which was a conscious decision because he was a more feeling person in the beginning.
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Re: TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

Unread postby Parlez » Wed Aug 20, 2008 11:17 pm

gemini wrote:I agree with Kitty, that I didn't feel Emmanuelle Seigner and Johnny had chemistry in the film. I do think she was selected for the film for her mysterious looks. The girl in the book seemed more innocent and more dangerous if you pay close attention to what she says so it is left to the reader to decide which she really is.

I do think that Polanski tried to make Dean both good and evil. Earlier Dean tries to save Liana Taillfer when Boris tries to kill her in the film ( I don't remember that being in the book) and he even attempts to pull Boris out of the circle of flames at one point but then in the end he seems to have went over and made sure he embraced evil. I think Lucas in the book was always treading evil, some of his conversation with the girl really seem like he is aware of the evil and it doesn't stop him which was a conscious decision because he was a more feeling person in the beginning.

As I recall, Johnny admitted to being uncomfortable with Emmanuelle, particularly in the 'love' scenes they had together, with Roman right there, breathing down their necks. :lol: But I didn't think she was nearly as miscast as what's-her-name (sorry - I really like her but I can't remember her name at the moment) who played Liana. She was wonderful in Chocolat, but didn't seem right for this part at all, IMO. Well, I'm sure we'll be getting to the casting issue eventually...

I agree, gemini, about Lucas having more of a character arc than Dean. In the book, we have the advantage of seeing Lucas descend, as it were, (mostly through his reminiscences about his blown relationship with Nikon) from a potentially feeling, loving guy to a lost cause. In the movie, we meet a Corso who's already gone. His intervention with Liana at the costume ball (or whatever it was) and with Borja at the castle had more to do with his own agenda at that point than with any altrustic impulses, IMO.

I'm actually beginning to understand why Polanski might have reined in Johnny's characterization of Dean and why there was no backstory for him - he may have wanted to show Corso as an already souless person.

How hard would that be to portray?!?
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Re: TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

Unread postby fansmom » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:03 pm

Parlez wrote:(sorry - I really like her but I can't remember her name at the moment) who played Liana. She was wonderful in Chocolat, but didn't seem right for this part at all, IMO.
Lena Olin

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Re: TCD Question #16 ~ Comparing Corsos

Unread postby Parlez » Thu Aug 21, 2008 9:45 pm

fansmom wrote:
Parlez wrote:(sorry - I really like her but I can't remember her name at the moment) who played Liana. She was wonderful in Chocolat, but didn't seem right for this part at all, IMO.
Lena Olin

That's the one! :cool:
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