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Truman Capote

26 replies

grouchyoscar · 10/02/2007 15:43

Don't know if I should be here or movies but here goes.

I adored 'Capote' with Phillip Seymour Hoffman and I saw 'Infamous' last night which, knocks it into a cocked hat IMO Toby Jones is fantastic. Now it has re lit my fire for reading 'in cold blood' I intended to 10 years ago but life got in the way.

Life will again so I'm wondering if I could those of you who have read it, do these films bear any real true insight to the book itself?

Shame Toby Jones isn't up for an Oscar...2 back to back Capotes!

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DarrellRivers · 11/02/2007 08:49

Well I saw Capote , and although a fab film, did feel that Truman Capote was a cold man and couldn't really understand how popular he was in social circles as although witty and entertaining, he didn't seem likeable.
It was a thought provoking film, and I warmed v much to Harper Lee, interesting, i never knew her connection to Capote
Whilst I haven't seen Infamous , I heard a review of it, in which the reviewers thought that Toby Jones role was more realistic, in that Capote seemed more human in it, and that the second film Infamous was a superior version, and it was unlucky for Toby Jones, in that this is the case, as he then did not get oscar nominated.
I am also going to read 'in cold blood' and heard it reviewed in a Good Read on R4. It is still v up to date even though it was written some years ago.
Must go an buy it now, i'll look forward to watching infamous on DVD.

grouchyoscar · 11/02/2007 12:56

Infamous gives Capote a more rounded character tbh. Makes him more human and likeable really.

Dh bought me a first edition book club copy of To kill a mockingbird last year and the phto on the jacket is taken by Truman, but I was amazed how close the connection was. Seems the 'Dill' character in Mockingbird was whole based on Capote....makes sense really. The Harper Lees are just like I always imagined she would be (in my head)...I think we all want her to be Scout really.

I think the reviwer your refering to is the quite marvellous Mark Kermode...most of what he says is pretty much spot on (except 'history of violence' which I hated). It was his review that turned me on to seeing Infamous.

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AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 12/02/2007 09:40

As well as reading (or re-reading) 'In Cold Blood' you should also give Gerald Clarke's biography 'Capote' a read. It's the biography that both 'Infamous' and 'Capote' are based on. Also, give 'Handcarved Coffins' a's Tru's second foray into 'true crime' and a good little read, it's easiest to get it in the Penguin 'Capote Reader' collection (which is a great introduction to Capote if you've never read any of his work. I better stop before I show myself up for the Capote geek i am! (yup, there is such a thing....even my littlest has the middle name Capote in tribute!)

DarrellRivers · 12/02/2007 13:18

LOL at the Capote middle name
Were you not tempted as a first name?

AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 12/02/2007 13:34

Nope! his first name is Cassidy, after the Irish vampire in the Garth Ennis/Steve Dillon masterpiece 'Preacher' we shorten it to CeeCee sometimes!

grouchyoscar · 12/02/2007 15:14

Thanks Ash That's the kind of info I need.

BTW I'm a 'Mockingbird' geek...If DS had been a DD she would have been called 'Harper-Lee' as a 1st name. DS shares his name with an American poet anyway (but wasn't named for that)

Nowt wrong with lierary nods really

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AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 12/02/2007 15:20

glad to help! it's not often i get to go all capote-centric!

AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 12/02/2007 15:38

just read in your profile that you got married in Vegas too.....we did the 'Fear and Loathing' Hunter S. Thompson Circus Circus a pic of me in full Ralph Steadman pose! plus we had to do the Holly Golightly outside Tiffany's pic as well

grouchyoscar · 12/02/2007 16:11

OH WOW! we got married in the chapel opposite Circus Circus!

I felt I should return visit Cirus Circusafter reading F&L but...hasn't happened! Now they've moved the chapel down the strip (only in America huh).

So you were never tempted by 'Hunter' as a name or is it Truman all the way for you? Capote is a fab name btw.

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AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 13/02/2007 08:51

always had Capote in mind for a boy! We're heading back to Vegas next year for our 10th anniversary (hopefully taking folk with us this time as it was just the two of us when we wed)...need to try and book the toptastic Ron DeCarr, the Elvis that married us first time for our renewal. Glad you liked Cassidy's full name btw....people usually look at us a wee bit strange when they hear his and the twins names!
As an aside 'Infamous' is out on R1 dvd today...just ordered my copy so should recieve it friday!

grouchyoscar · 13/02/2007 10:07

Wow! you had an Elvis! Cool stuff we got warried 8/1/93 so it was his birthday I suppose!

We'd love to renew our vows but I'd really like my only guest to be there but I don't know how to get hold of 'The Bitmap Brothers' anymore. And as the chapel only exsists on Google Earth it just proves you can never go home really.

Cassidy Capote is a wonderful name.

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grouchyoscar · 13/02/2007 10:08

Oh and thanks for the DVD tip. WQill order ASAP

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TinyGang · 13/02/2007 10:24

Oh thanks for this thread grouchyoscar.

You're all so interesting. Love the tributes to your favourite writers in your children's names

You have reminded me to watch the first Capote and I hadn't heard about Infamous (must've gone under my radar) so will look out for that too.

Ikwym about life getting in the way of these things!

I haven't read any Capote - he's on my huge reading 'to do' list.

Read 'Mockingbird' years ago - it is a wonderful book and deserves a re-read every so often I think really. (Wouldn't Atticus make a great middle name too!?)

grouchyoscar · 13/02/2007 10:44

The Ex Arsenal captain (his name escapes me...he's now a manager of a lower league side.....Tony Adams, that's it) called his last little boy Atticus

My friend has a Scout and I love Calpurnia but I doubt it works well in West Yorkshire.

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FluffyMummy123 · 13/02/2007 10:45

Message withdrawn

AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 14/02/2007 09:02

meant to add, the soundtrack album for 'capote' features extracts from tru's 1968 reading of 'in cold blood'

grouchyoscar · 14/02/2007 14:04

Please keep me posted on your opinion of Infamous please Ash

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grouchyoscar · 15/02/2007 19:05


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AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 15/02/2007 19:11

will do! ordered it monday, so should get to see it over the weekend

grouchyoscar · 17/02/2007 09:29

bumpy bump bump

DH is getting the Capote Soundtrach btw

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AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 17/02/2007 10:36

its just arrived in the post so gonna watch it this eve!
i'll keep you informed!

grouchyoscar · 18/02/2007 10:37

btw anyone following this...Tesco had loads of copies of Capote for under a fiver.

Do you have a review/verdict yet Ash?

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AshNotTheHousewaresOne · 18/02/2007 12:05

watched 'Infamous' last night, noticed it was based more on George Plimpton's 'chattier' biography than Gerald Clarke's definitive bio'.
I found the first half of 'Infamous' a lot truer to Truman (and his place in society circles) at the time, the dialogue and performances were sparkling and Toby Jones' portrayal of Tru was spot on. In fact, I preferred this movie's presentation of events (his arrival in Holcomb, Dewey's reaction to him etc.) to 'Capote', but felt that once Dick and Perry were caught that the film lost it's way a little.
The 'relationship' between Perry and Tru seemed a little forced in 'Infamous' and there seemed to be a lack of focus on the actual writing of 'In Cold Blood' and how it affected Capote. You never got the feeling of the length of time that passed between him beginning the book and the execution of the pair. This is where I thought 'Capote' won over.....I feel the differences between the two movies can be summed up by the fact that 'Capote' was a filmed made by people interested in the Clutter family murders and how it affected Truman Capote, whilst 'Infamous' was made by people with a love of Truman Capote as a person/personality firstly and how it affected him second. I can understand why people warmed more to Toby Jones' portrayal too, the mannerisms and bitchiness was spot on, tho I do feel that if a viewer is aware of the contents of the great unfinished 'Answered Prayers' they'd be cringing rather than laughing as Tru passes on gossip he's sworn to keep secret (the Sigourney Weaver 'husband/affair/period stained bedsheets' comes to mind....watching someone confide in a friend when the viewer knows that this particular secret is going to end up being published in a novel at a later date is excruciating to watch).
Still, thought it was a great movie and was really intrigued to see two (very) different takes on what is really the same source material and events....if only you could join the second half of 'Capote' to the first half of 'Infamous' perhaps then you'd have the perfect Tru biopic!

wheelsonthebus · 18/02/2007 12:25

Is infamous better than Capote? Great, will get it. Thought Capote has fascinating.

grouchyoscar · 18/02/2007 16:13

Thanks Ash, how great to have a real 'insider' view on it all.

I felt 'Infamous' gve a more human view of Tru than 'Capote' did but having not read 'In cold blood' I was unaware of a lot of the back story. On a superficial level I found 'Infamous a more 'rounded' film. Plus it made DH blub!

Must read some books! I think you have a Capote convert here

Big thanks again

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