RARA-AVIS: Re: The Long Goodbye

From: jimdohertyjr ( jimdohertyjr@yahoo.com)
Date: 11 Feb 2007


Re your response to my comments below:

> What I don't get is how someone can
> make the logical jump from someone not faithfully adapting a work, or
> taking liberties with it, to the director/screenwriters disrespecting
> the author. Seems kind of silly to me--but this is an argument we're
> never going to meet any meeting of the minds with. Although it does
> seem from the responses that far more people here liked Altman's
> version of Long Goodbye than despised it, so I think we do have a
> RARA AVIS consensus that the Long Goodbye was a damn good movie ;)

I don't make a startlingly difficult-to-see logical jump. I look at the movie, in conjunction with Altman's public comments, and come to the obvious conclusion. But we're beyond that now.

You may disagree with the position that, morally, an adapter owes some fidelity to the originator of the source material. But what Miker said is that artists have no moral obligations, at least not in the creation of their art.


At all.

It's one thing to say Altman was or was not violating a clear moral standard when he used Chandler's novel to make an anti-Chandler movie. It seems clear to me, but I can certainly see that it's a debatable point.

But that's very different from saying artists, as a professional group, have no moral obligations whatsoever when they produce art. EVERYONE has moral obligations, in their personal life and in their professional life. Why should artists be different?

Is child pornography defensible on the basis of artistic freedom? Is plagiarism? Is bigotry?

I hope no one here thinks so.

To exploit children sexually in the name of art is morally wrong.

To steal another person's work and sell it as your own in the name of art is morally wrong.

To promulgate hateful ideas in the name of art is morally wrong.

And to say that an artist has no moral obligations to his fellow humans and to society at large is to say that any or all of those acts are okay.

And to say that any of these acts are NOT okay, are intrinsically immoral, is to acknowledge that artists DO, in fact, have moral obligations.



This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 11 Feb 2007 EST