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Thursday, 02 February 2017


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This is one of those movies that makes me wonder how it got made. Can you imagine presenting the script idea to the people who write the checks?

Wikipedia tells us that the movie made was not the movie originally written ...

Many critical script alterations were written as filming progressed, according to Stephen Tobolowsky, who played Ned Ryerson. "When I got the part, it was still kind of a mediocre Bill Murray movie," he said. "You know, Bill Murray, with no consequences, in comic situations ... It wasn’t until we got into the shooting that everything turned on its head. And it became not only a good movie, not only a great movie, but a classic.

One of my favorite movies ... It inspired this a couple of years ago:


Today, Groundhog Day, is my wife's and my wedding anniversary. Yes, it was intentionally chosen. In part due to the movie and in part because of the date on which we married. 222002 Easy for me to remember!

As a side note, both of us are avid serious amateur photographers. We were married on 222002, at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, at sunset. Also VERY intentional!

I am a native of Oak Park, Illinois and am very familiar with Woodstock. As you well know, it is no longer a sleepy little town in the country, away from the hustle and bustle of Chicago. I know why you moved to where you are today. A most sylvan area of the USA that will not be, hopefully, suburbanized for a long, long time.

And, like Bill Murray, I am a die-hard, Cubs fan (3rd generation) from Chicagoland. My son and grandson are 4th and 5th generation fans as well. Actually, my grandson is only 3 years old, but THE CUBS are in his genes!

I very much enjoy your blog and have been a fan for several years. Your piece on the Groundhog Day movie really hit home.

Another comedy that has much deeper implications is "50 First Dates," starring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, which explores the nature of memory, it's loss, and how it may be regained. Lots of slapstick leavened with profundity at the end. I recommend it highly.

I like the fact that AMC is repeating the movie all day.

Don't drive angry, Phil.

Buddhist interpretation of the movie. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lewis-richmond/buddhism-and-groundhog-day_b_1249815.html

What I don't get about the day, not the movie, is that there are always six more weeks of winter on February 2.

I'm hopeful that the movie teaches something even to those who are too busy being entertained to notice.

I see one of the cable movie channels (AMC) has a sense of humor (and/or public service) and has filled today's broadcast schedule with nothing but repeat showings of Groundhog Day. LOL

I did not know that the movie was filmed in Woodstock, nor the other associations. I had a great-Aunt who lived in Woodstock. She was quite a character and had a little (aren't they all?) Chihuahua who thought he was the size of a Newfoundland. Good memories.

Yes Mike when Bill Murray first gave up his futile suicide attempts he morphed into the selfish "manipulate the situation" mode. Learning to use the repeated day to care about and help others was the key to breaking his curse. Good lesson no? Now lets talk Matrix? Version one only please. :)

I'm surprised Groundhog Day (the day itself) remains rather popular, despite people not having found ways to monetize it. Or have they?

Groundhog day is probably the number one Jewish/ Buddhist/Christian religious movie.


50 first dates operates at a similar level, great final scene.

I've always loved that movie. It's great for all the reasons you list and was our first glimpse of what Bill can do. Bill went from the hilarious Carl Spackler to Groundhog Day to some really good dramatic roles.

"...this young Cinderella who's come out of nowhere....he got all of that one! He's gotta be pleased with that!" ~ Carl Spackler

Every day is Groundhog Day on the dpreview forums :)

HAPPY GROUND HOG DAY - Phil saw his shadow so he is predicting six more weeks of winter. (If he didn't see his shadow then he would have predicted a month and half until winter ends).

I could watch that movie over and over and over ...

I was born on Groundhog Day, seems appropriate somehow :)

Never got Bill Murray, just don't find him funny or entertaining which explains why I never watched the movie,soon as I caught a glimpse of Bill I automatically changed channels.
Peoples taste in humour is a very interesting study, maybe you have some thoughts on it Mike?

Interestingly, Bill Murray has a lifelong interest in philosophy. (He was a student of philosophy at the Sorbonne for four years). I've always thought this the key to his humor. Anyway, students of philosophy recognize in Groundhog Day an illustration of Nietzsche's idea of the Eternal Recurrence of the Same.

I've always thought it was brilliant that they were able to convey this concept, with all its implications, to a mass audience, by centering it around Groundhog Day, even though the concept really has nothing to do with Punxsutawney Phil. Say "eternal recurrence of the same" and most people look at you like you're talking particle physics; say "groundhog day, the movie" and everybody knows exactly what you mean.

I agree completely with the high regard for this film. It, appropriately, rewards repeated viewing. It sits in my mind as the bridge between (any of my favourite filmed versions of) A Christmas Carol and ACC's 'mirror image' - It's a Wonderful Life. One , a man who did not connect with the souls around him, and another, in despair who had to be shown just how much he had done so.

"..A Christmas Carol, another complex allegory that is superficially enjoyable as a tall tale but also touches on the meaning of life, redemption, and what matters about human connections.."

But I come back again and again - preferably in the cinema, but also on DVD - to "Blade Runner", a 'dystopian' sci-fi film ..or a deep consideration of 'the human condition' and of memory. What, and who, are we without memories? It's a parable of 'the human condition', but slipped one step sideways: the replicants come down from the heavens to seek their human creator here on earth, and to ask for more life. The 'replicant' robots save the life of their human executioner time and again, and they show more humanity than the humans .."more human than human is our goal here at Tyrell" says their manufacturer.

Its photography (cinematography) is phenomenal (it's described as "the last of the analogue films" by its biographer Paul Sammon, in the era just before computer graphics moved into cinema, it has images and music which stay with you ..we-ell, with me!.. constantly, and its layered sounds and thoughts have lingered with me since 1982. (That original version with the Marlowe-like voice-over - sadly no longer available, except on old videotape - is, I think, the best version.)

And, when Harrison Ford first goes stalking the replicants in J F Sebastian's apartment, there are laughing human-like automata which are pretty much identical to the automata seen through the toy shop window by Tiny Tim in the British 1951 Brian Desmond Hurst film of "A Christmas Carol" (which frightened me almost to death when I was 4 years old)!

Maybe Ridley Scott had seen that black-&-white "A Christmas Carol", too, when he were a lad!

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