MovieChat Forums > Patty Hearst (1988) Discussion > Would have been better as a black comedy

Would have been better as a black comedy


I think this material lends itself really well to black comedy. The SLA was extremely ludicrous, but it was played straight in this film. This was a missed opportunity. I like Paul Schrader, though he isn't really suited for this material. Someone along the lines of Kubrick would have given just the right sardonic tone this material needed.

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Yeah, I'm really sure that Stanley Kubrick would have jumped right up to direct a cheesy puff piece for a wayward socialite, he built his reputation doing stuff like that.

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I agree, didn't really work all that well as a straight drama, so that might have helped it. Would have been a hell of an inspired touch.


hope in our heart, and wings on our heels

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...Except I don't think the Hearsts or the family of the guard killed by the SLA would guffaw.

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I actually thought it kinda did become a subtle black comedy as the SLA members' behaviors grow more and more crazy. Although if you want to see an outright parody of the same story, check out the very obscure 1976 "Tanya," which is actually pretty funny (when it's not padding itself out with boring softcore sex scenes).

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It would've been awfully black, but there's something to the idea. The SLA was ridiculous, and in the sort of "period" way that is particularly laughable from the perspective of a later time.

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