Re: RARA-AVIS: Re:The Executioners/Cape Fear

From: Mark Sullivan (
Date: 13 Jun 2003

I haven't read the book, but I saw the two movies in quick succesion, rented the original just before seeing the remake in the theaters when it came out. Even though I liked that the later version was more morally ambiguous (Cady had a legitimate gripe with Nolte, who had tanked his defense), I far preferred the original, especially Mitchum's quiet, laidback menace to DeNiro's over the top threat. That said, as several others have stated, the highlight of the latter film was the scene in which Juliette Lewis sucked Deniro's thumb -- genuinely creepy. I just finished reading Amy Taubin's great analysis of Taxi Driver in the BFI Film Classics series. In passing, she mentions that Scorcese says that was the scene that sold him on doing the remake. Still, I've seen Taxi Driver numerous times (and Mean Streets even more), but I've never felt like watching Cape Fear a second time.


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