I just rewatched the TCM broadcast from last week. Genuinely funny movie. I love how he wants to do the Eleanor Rossevelt story as Dorothy.
I always felt Teri Garr was robbed of the Oscar but now I feel Garr is a little schticky and Jessica Lange really gave a nice lovely sad performance. (Doris Belack really was the Best Supporting Actress in the movie though)
Dabney Coleman kept his beautiful ass covered sadly...it really was a thing of beauty in Nine to Five and that Chevy Chase move wear he took it out.
Let's discuss Tootie.
I love Kim Fields.
Although I enjoyed it tremendously when it came out, I never quite got how an unattractive "actress" was permitted to ad lib her way to soap opera stardom. I also wondered why the experience didn't lead to bigger things for Hoffman's character's career. You'd think he'd get a book deal and a run on the talk show circuits after pulling off a legendary showbiz hoax like that.
r3 Character career? Have me met?
As I recall Garr's part was rather small.
I love TOOTSIE, and it's got some of the funniest lines ever uttered on film ("You were a tomato!", "How do you feel about Cleveland?", "You slut."). And I agree with you about Garr. Though she's funny in every scene she's in, it's the same kooky, neurotic blonde schtick she's been doing since her days in sketch comedy -- no great stretch. And it's a superficial role, her character exists simply for laughs and to be the brunt of jokes, but she doesn't really push the story forward -- take the character out and it won't hamper the progression of the story. Jessica Lange's character, however, is the heart of the story. She is the reason Hoffman's character changes from volatile, uncaring actor to sensitive, hopeless romantic, and the way Lange plays it, it's easy to see why he's fallen in love and is willing to change. Her role really is a support[italic]ive[/italic] one as it's pivotal to the progression of the lead's personal story.
Can't you just reminisce about the last Tootsie thread a year and half ago? Another movie was overrated by DL. It's little more than a sitcom, an ancient one at that, but I'm sure this thing will drag on for over 100 posts.
Remember when Kim Fields played Mrs Butterworth on a commercial?
[quote]I also wondered why the experience didn't lead to bigger things for Hoffman's character's career. You'd think he'd get a book deal and a run on the talk show circuits after pulling off a legendary showbiz hoax like that.
It did r3. In the final scene when he waits for Jessica Lange at the stage door and she is so mad she will barely talk to him....she says "you are pretty hot after your big unveiling so what's next for you Michael?"
He says he is going to do Jeff's play with Sandy but the implication is he has a lot of offers.
poor r7...is bitter and jaded.
Lange's intensity and hurt in the final scene where she is signing autographs and sees Hoffman waiting for her is quite beautiful.
Dustin Hoffman and Jessica Lange are both great actors but Tootsie was soooo unbelievably boring. I have never understood its appeal. It is not in the least bit entertaining.
R4, I didn't mean Dustin Hoffman's career as a character actor. I meant Michael Dorsey's career. I couldn't recall the name so it's no surprise I forgot the reference R9 provided. I only remember the big laugh it got in the movie theater when they cut to the playhouse in a barn with Return to Love Canal, an obvious comedown for the former cover-girl, Dorothy Michaels.
One thing that never made sense was at the very end after Michael Dorsey announces who he/she really is, I would think he'd be in such demand and he wouldn't be able to stand alone on a New York street.
I'm still convinced that Lange got the Best Supporting Oscar as a consolation prize, she was denied a Best Actress for "Frances" that year or the year before. She was good, of course, but it's really just an ordinary "The Girl" role.
Bill Murray was the one who gave a really excellent supporting performance.
Yes r16 it was a consolation prize because she was nominated that same year for Frances and people were voting for M in Sophie's Choice as lead actress so they gave her the supporting one as a way of saying we liked you in Frances too but we have to vote for Meryl.
My point in rewatching it was that she gave a very nice heartfelt performance. I don't know if she'd have won without the double nominations (Glenn Close probably would or at least should have for Garp) but my point was it was very nice work.
[quote] but it's really just an ordinary "The Girl" role.
Hey, what's wrong with just playing "the girl" role!!!!
I was was born to play Tootsie!
Intelligent people also don't make blanket statements about what intelligent people do or don't do.
r20 I was teasing you based on the content of the other thread...no hard feelings
Jeez r20 try to find a sense of humor.
Yes R13 and I was teasing you back. It's all love dear.
How about you let me and my boyfriend R13 handle this. We don't need you interfering in our affairs. We don't do threesomes.
Oh and I found my sense of humor just as I posted my response. I thought my it was hilarious.
Teri Garr at her finest.
"Does Jeff know?"
I loved Charles Durning in it and when they meet at the bar and he says he should punch him but won't. It was a sweet movie and even the cheesy song was good.
One of my favorite movies of all time, genuinely funny. Hoffman and the whole cast were sublime! I own the movie and watch it once or twice year.
"Michael I beg you, bet therapy!'
I hated when they made her remove her skates. What really happened that season when Kim Fields got so fat? Was she really pregnant?
Director Sydney Pollack is also a hoot as Michael Dorsey's long-suffering agent.
Pollack was such an amazing actor, actually. Love him.
Lange was perfection.
Go, Tootsie Go!
Many times a lead actress (like Jessica in Tootsie) will place themselves in the supporting category to better their chances of winning.
Which was Teri Garr's complaint about losing to Jessica Lange
Jessica played a supporting role. Everyone but Dustin was supporting.
Bill Murray ad-libbed most of his lines. His name owas not on the posters or in any of the press relases, and he did not appear in the trailers. His appearance in the film was a complete surprise until word of mouth got out.
I think it's a terrific film and very funny. All you have to do is see how many alleged comedies are not terrific or funny and you can see that it is about as rare as Haley's comet for everything to align just right.
The only line I felt didn't work was "Being a woman in the 80s is so complicated." Sure, it was directed at Dorothy which made it funny but it didn't seem like something Lange would say.
Some nice on set photos by Mary Ellen Mark, including from "Tootsie".
No she wouldn't Jen r44, unlike yourself, she is a beautiful woman.
Watching it again, it is just too unbelievable that no one would've figured out the Dorothy was a man in drag! And the thing about Michael getting away with doing his own makeup at home because of an "allergy", don't they have union rules on the set which wouldn't allow for that? I do enjoy the movie though.
Did someone call for That Girl?
As much as I love Jessica Lange, Teri Garr stole this film outright.
It wasn't too long after Garr's under-appreciated performance as Dreyfuss's wife in "Close Encounters," right?
Teri Garr is one of the greats whose career stalled too long ago...I know she's been ill. God bless that funny and talented woman.
Also, Bill Murray was at his his best as Hoffmann's roommate her. Understated but hilarious
Bi female here - watching "Tootsie" when it came out in the '80s made me aware of feelings for women for the first time. I was 14, and Jessica Lange was just so gorgeous, sexy, and sensitive.
I still really like the film, but does anyone else feel that Lange's line to Dorothy "I love you, but I just can't LOVE you" is rather naff; when Dorothy reveals that he's actually Michael Dorsey, a man, it's now fine for her to waltz off with him into the sunset. Perhaps they could have explored more the theme of falling in love with the person, and not just the gender.
[quote] Perhaps they could have explored more the theme of falling in love with the person, and not just the gender.
We're talking about a mainstream comedy (albeit with a bloke in drag) from the early 1980s. It wasn't an art house film exploring gender issues.
R48 - Agree about Teri Garr.
Meet Teri Garr and you will quickly find out why her career stalled.
"You're nothing like you are in your movies, are you." - David Russell, dismissing her after five minutes. My sentiments exactly!
Teri was fun on Letterman.
God forbid you should lose your standing as a cult failure.
Dorothy looked just like my Aunt Mary....complete with heavy makeup. My aunt work it to cover bad acne scars.
[quote] And the thing about Michael getting away with doing his own makeup at home because of an "allergy", don't they have union rules on the set which wouldn't allow for that?
true r46 that is a reach...having done a few soap appearances in my day I know the wardrobe people are constantly rushing in to fix and primp your clothes and smooth things out, retuck your shirt, fix your hair etc. In reality some wardrobe girl would have accidentally grabbed Dustin's fake boobs inadvertently.
Dabney Coleman nude in Modern Problems is one of the hilights of film history.....any one have a link?
I loved Tootsie! I'm from Syracuse, and being that not much is ever heard about Syracuse other than snow, or basketball it was really fun to hear them talk about my little obscure, rusty hometown. Then when they finally show the Syracuse Playhouse- it's in a barn! So disappointing yet hilarious! Typical of the New Yorker's vision of Upstate.
r. 46 & 56, it's not a reach. Plenty of actors have allergic reactions to stage makeup and either provide their own or do their own makeup at home. It's actually quite common.
That is one nutty hospital!
[quote]Everyone but Dustin was supporting.
I remember back in '82, the Oscar campaign directed at those who claimed Jessica Lange was the movie's leading lady:
"No, Dorothy Michaels is the movie's leading lady."
And yes, you have to suspend disbelief. Forget the people who can feel the stubs on his face, his fake tits, etc. I don't clearly remember, but was the whole SAG membership issue addressed? Was Dorothy's an open audition and then she joined SAG under that name? And what ID did "she" produce when she joined the union?
Actually, I'm a member of Equity and I don't even remember if I had to produce any ID. And since you can join under any stage name, maybe she was given a pass.
Julie Nichols would be considered a coward in the lesbian community nowadays.
Dustin Hoffman's female stand-in for when Michael was Dorothy actually became his full-time stand-in on all of his subsequent movies and also one of his production assistants.
I always thought being a stand-in would be a cool job.
Long hours, you're a step above background, great good, and I bet there are some perks.
I'd like to think stars would be loyal to a good stand in.
It wwasn't half as good as Mrs. Doubtfire.
Plus, you work on a long movie shoot for a few months and with overtime, you might be able to have some free time until the next project begins.
And being in tight with a major star could open some doors for the future.
There are not many stand-ins who have that sort of deal where they're on a weekly contract as opposed to a daily voucher, though. Robin Williams, Jeff Bridges, John Travolta, Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio and Will Smith are the only major stars I can think of. And no women at all have the power to get their stand-ins on a contract. It seems with the guys it's a buddy thing-and, maybe with Travolta, something more.i
but r62...nowadays you need hi-def makeup....I guess back then maybe it was more believable...but it's is just a premise you have to buy to enjoy the movie....let's face it in real life if Hoffman showed up looking like that everyone would say...look there is a guy in a dress and wig...
r64...I don't clearly remember, but was the whole SAG membership issue addressed? Was Dorothy's an open audition and then she joined SAG under that name? And what ID did "she" produce when she joined the union?
He gets the audition just by showing up and saying he forgot his paper work or something like that but that Sydney Pollack is his agent to which the woman from the soap says wow, quite impressiveness.
It is sort of implied that he gets Pollack to take care of the paperwork. (in the Russian Tea Room scene) They must do something illegal because Pollack even as big a deal as he is supposed to be...is still afraid of getting caught at the end when Dorothy's contract is picked up.
About 20 years ago I worked with a woman who looked like Dustin as Dorothy. I shared a cubicle with a guy who would sing "Something's Telling Me it Might Be You" everytime she walked by.
I agree with the poster who said it was wholly unbelieveable that anyone would not have instantly seen that Dorothy Michaels was a man in drag. Yes, I know movies are about the suspension of disbelief. But when the entire PREMISE of the movie is that a guy is trying to fool people into thinking he is a real woman, well, it just never worked for me. I thought it was a Hoffman vanity project. I did not have one genuine laugh during the entire movie. I "got" it, got what they were trying to do but it never worked for me. I remember all the articles and interviews with Hoffman where he expressed his empathy and support for women and that portraying one "gave him new respect for women," that it made him a better man, etc. etc. Again, it was all Hoffman's vanity project. SEE WHAT A BRILLIANT ACTOR I AM. And, yes, he is in the right role. But this movie was just stupid in so many respects. "America's favorite Tootsie is on a roll." Really? Just looks like Dustin Hoffman in drag to me.
"I was a better man as a man pretending to be a woman than I ever was as a man, blah, blah, blah"
I loved the movie, but wasn't too crazy about Hoffman's interpretation. The stupidest thing a man can do when impersonating a woman is go into a clown-like falsetto. First it's insulting and second it's amateurish, as the falsetto is very limited in range and volume and hardly makes a guy sound like a woman, but more like a guy imitating a woman.
It's much more effective to use your natural upper register and accompany it by female mannerisms, to whatever degree you want your woman to be feminine. Find that range where a man's voice meets a woman's, it's not that hard. Play a tape of a woman talking and join her in her key and octave. I know Hoffman has a pretty deep voice, but it's not "Ol' Man River" deep. And I'm sure even good ol' Paul Robeson would have been able to find a more female sounding upper range.
That's one of the reasons Jack Lemmon was so much better than Tony Curtis in "Some Like It Hot" (other than Mr. Lemmon being one of the greatest actors in the history of Cinema).
And if Alaska Thunderfuck - with her deep bass - can sound like a girl, even Dustin Hoffman can.
Leslie Ann Warren was hysterical in V/V.
"Oh, pookie!?" and "I'm horny!" in that horrible nasal accent.
"I wonder if Michael and Julie got married."
No, once she got to know the real Michael she realized he was still pompous, self-absorbed, humorless, and tempermental. He may have improved, but how much can you improve a guy like that.
If the roles in Tootsie had been gender-reversed, who would the actors have been? Say that the lead character was Dorothy Michaels and she had to pretend to be a man (Michael Dorsey) to get a part on a soap, and she fell in love with a male actor on the show, only the male actor thinks our hero is a mo. Instead of Dustin and Jessica, who do we get? From 1982, how about the Keatons, Diane and Michael?
[quote]No, once she got to know the real Michael she realized he was still pompous, self-absorbed, humorless, and tempermental. He may have improved, but how much can you improve a guy like that.
and short too.
R90, Julie Andrews and James Garner, with Blake Edwards direc.... hey, wait a minute...
I'm pretty sure Shakespeare got there first, with a little thing called Twelfth Night.
This is one of my favorite movies. Besides Hoffman (who is most definitely the lead character) this movie has a great ensemble in a very well crafted and wriiten movie.
One of my favorites of its time, mostly for the supporting actors
(which I guess means everyone other than Dustin Hoffman, who is great in this and other films, but never really did much for me).
Teri Garr was perfect; Jessica Lange was adorable; Bill Murray and Dabney Coleman cracked me up, as they do; and Sydney Pollack and Geena Davis stole their brief scenes.
Actually, each one of the supporting actors seemed to steal their respective scenes from Hoffman. That's great acting by them AND him, and above all, very good casting.
Well fuck you, R96.
The casting is absolutely perfect right down to the guy who says, "How do you feel about Cleveland?" That guy was born to deliver that line.
I'm Edward Kimberly!
Southwest General is made of PEOPLE!
Hoffman doing the publicity for this movie gave the greatest performance of his life.
Though I was pretty embarrassed by it.
The DVD extra where he cries about being an unattractive woman who society treats as invisible is either one of the most sincere moments on a DVD, or the best bit of acting anyone ever achieved in history.
Jessica did really well here.
I really enjoyed Tootsie. Once. It was a fun movie. I am shocked that people find it so brilliant. I didn't, at all.
And - probably until the merger with SAG - anybody could join AFTRA, just for the price of initiation and dues, if I remember correctly (same thing with AGMA and AGVA. Please don't anyone ask what AGMA And AGVA are!
I always thought the same thing, r102.
Whatever I love this movie so fucking much. If it's not the greatest American comedy, then certainly (IMO, obviously) it's the greatest comedy movie that is a classic situation comedy. It's a product of Hollywood in the best possible way.
Charles Durning was brilliant in that last scene at the bar. Why was he nominated for The Best Little Whorehouse instead of this I don't know. He should have been nominated for Tootsie and won.
The tomato scene with Sydney Pollack (whom I LOVED as an actor) is probably my favorite scene in a movie, period.
I know they didn't use the term then but Dustin Hoffman as an obsessive, demanding, chauvinist but brilliant actor is no doubt the gold standard for "meta" casting.
Love the movie, always will.
Coming out on Criterion Collection second week in December. Just in time for... well, you know. (Finally, something to ask for).
Off subject but "Safe" with Julianne Moore at her best also out on Criterion next month. Now back to regularly scheduled programming...
One of my favorite movies of all time. There's not a single bad or boring scene in the film. It all works perfectly. And the acting is consistently flawless.
Was this the movie I did with that Moon Frye child?
Jessica Lange is so young and beautiful in this movie!
[quote]Perhaps they could have explored more the theme of falling in love with the person, and not just the gender.
They did, and in a way that was decades advanced from the early 1980s in which it was set.
The very fact that homosexuality wasn't treated negatively was very progressive for the times. Whenever Michael was referenced as possibly gay or Dorothy as possibly a lesbian (the hilarious scene in Sydney Pollack's office is an example of both), its treated with sympathy and attempts at understanding, not as something horrible or played for laughs. Even when it is part of the jokes, it's always the misconception of it (and the utter ludicrousness of Michael as Dorothy still being a straight male underneath it all) that is played for laughs and not just the concept that one might be gay or lesbian.
It was very progressive for its time. It still holds up today.
[quote]Bill Murray ad-libbed most of his lines. His name owas not on the posters or in any of the press relases, and he did not appear in the trailers. His appearance in the film was a complete surprise until word of mouth got out.
I remember the theater audience reacting whrn he first appeared onscreen.
All true r113. Although my favorite line in that whole scene was when Hoffman says "I went to the ladies room and I pissed in the sink I'm in TROUBLE man," - that fucking cracks me up every time.
R114 do you think someone's appearance in a movie could be kept under wraps for that long today? I can't imagine....
So many great things about this movie. Can't be praised enough, IMO.