The Thomas Crown Affair VS The Thomas Crown Affair

28 Mar

Good morning, and welcome to Wednesday. Another day, another discussion of illegal activity here at Gumball Crayola! I probably shouldn’t sound so enthusiastic about that, should I? But it’s hard not to be enthusiastic when this is what you’re greeted with first thing in the morning:



Sigh. I love my job. Two days of fabulous scenery in a row! Are we on a roll here, or what?

In case you couldn’t tell from the appearance of the two very dapper gentlemen above, today’s match up is

The Thomas Crown Affair VS. The Thomas Crown Affair


The Deal: A super suave multi-millionaire-playboy-thief is pursued, professionally and otherwise, by a super-suave dresses-like-a-multi-millionaire-even-if-she-isn’t-one-society-girl-insurance-investigator. Whew! Many smoldering looks and much suggestive bantering follows. And at the end…

The Original VS The Do Over: As happened when we featured The Italian Job near the beginning of this countdown, the original version of this movie has a much darker, less Hollywood-ized ending. (If you’d like to read a spoiler of the ending, click here. ) While I do think it’s a more genuine ending, one that suits the characters’ personalities, the 1999 version  introduces a couple of new elements that I really like. Changing Crown from a bank robber to an art thief allows for some really fun scenes like this one:

And don’t you just love Rene Russo’s hair?!? (Yes, we cover very important elements of cinema very seriously here at Gumball Crayola). So from my enthusiasm, you can probably guess that

The Definitive Champion: is the 1999 remake. And if you’re curious, the song playing in the scene we just watched was “Sinnerman” by the lovely and talented Nina Simone. You can listen to it, as well as a couple other cool tracks from the soundtrack, below.





Ocean’s Eleven VS Ocean’s Eleven

27 Mar

I’m excited – and a little alarmed – to tell you that our crime spree is continuing here at Gumball Crayola this morning. I’m not quite sure how we got from providing a caffeinated outlook on life to celebrating a life of crime, but here we are!!

Yesterday we explored the murky (under)world of murder for hire, and today we’re talking about high stakes robbery in Las Vegas. Just as illegal, but so much better looking: that’s right, today’s Movie Match up is:

Ocean’s Eleven VS. Ocean’s Eleven

Now, before we get to The Deal, I just need to get a couple of things out of the way, so that I can judge these movies fairly and impartially and without drooling on my keyboard…

Have you ever seen such sauve-ness in your life??

Can you stand it?!?

All right. Now that I’ve gotten that out of my system, here we go:

The Deal: After seeing the pictures above, you don’t actually care about a silly little thing like plot do you?!? Sigh. A group of ridiculously handsome friends concoct a ridiculous plan to steal a ridiculous amount of money from a ridiculous number of casinos. Ok? Can I get back to my photos now?

The Original VS The Do Over: If you know me outside of Gumball Crayola, chances are you already know about my years-long love affair with Francis Albert, aka The Voice, aka Old Blue Eyes, aka The Chairman of the Board…if we’re meeting here for the first time, chances are you’ve probably figured out that I kind of love Frank Sinatra. A lot. What gave it away?

Anyway, the point is that I’m torn, much as I was when we talked about my favourite curmudgeons. But if I have to choose, and if I have to defend my choice based on things like, you know, artistic merit, then I have to go with the Do Over on this one. Steven Sodenburgh makes such distinct, specific choices with his cinematography and editing, and he just made those guys all look so cool:

Right? Which means that the 2001 version is:

The Definitive Champion because, le’s be honest, I’m powerless to resist a well lit, well edited Brad and George, especially if they’ve got a great soundtrack and a whole bunch of Hollywood in-jokes to back them up. Don’t worry Francis Albert! I still love you!!

Dial “M” For Murder VS A Perfect Murder

26 Mar

Good morning! Well here we are, another Monday, another movie makeover. Which might not seem like such a radical concept, except that I’ve just recently returned from a self-imposed sabbatical focusing on Wallowing 101.

The wallowing didn’t help, so I thought I’d bring my focus back to movies. And murders. And deadly double crosses and assasination plots.

This blog is clearly doing wonders for my mental health, don’t you think?

Today’s match up is…

Dial “M” For Murder VS A Perfect Murder

The Deal: See the above, aforementioned murders, deadly double crosses, and assasination plots. Actually, what we have here is your typical case of boy meets girl, boy marries girl, girl has affair, boy finds out and hires an assasin, boy blackmails assasin… ok, so maybe the story isn’t so typical. Well, we are talking about Alfred Hitchcock, after all.

The Original VS the Do Over: The problem with trying to update a classic suspense thriller is…you lose the suspense. Or a lot of it, anyway. Particularly if iconic scenes in the original are based on a form of technology that isn’t used in the shiny modern universe of the remake!

Click on the terrifying telephone below to watch a clip and see what I mean:


The Definitive Champion: Speaking of Hitchcock, with our previous movie makeovers, I’ve tended to be partial to the remakes, or unable to decide between the two versions. Not in this case! You don’t mess with Hitchcock. You just don’t. Unless you have plans to remake the movie as a musical, why would you even try to out-suspense the master of suspense? Now, I enjoy Viggo Mortensen as much as the next girl, but even seeing him without his shirt on isn’t enough to persuade me…Hitchcock for the win!