Tuesday is Francis Ford Coppola Day
March 3, 2009 3:38 PM   Subscribe

After creating four successive masterpieces in the 1970s, culminating in the tortured production of Apocalypse Now, Francis Ford Coppola began the 1980s by directing "a romantic comedy, a musical fantasy and an erotic love story set amidst the neon glitter of Las Vegas on a Fourth of July weekend."

In a year when Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan was filmed for $11 million, One From The Heart ended up costing $27 million - due to Coppola's insistence on building enormous sets rather than filming on location and its then-revolutionary production techniques which would later become industry standard.

The buzz was terrible. And the resulting financial losses were so punishing that Coppola had to spend the rest of the 80s and much of the 90s working them off. But the Tom Waits soundtrack was nominated for an Academy Award. And the film has always had its admirers.

Opening titles

Raul Julia and Teri Garr tango

Yes. that was all shot in the studio
posted by Joe Beese (17 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
"One from the Heart left Coppola on the verge on bankruptcy from the late 80s to early 90s. To keep ahead of his creditors, Coppola directed films he would've otherwise passed up, including The Godfather, Part III and the "Robin Williams as a giant 10-year old" flick, Jack.

That's right, One from the Heart was responsible for freaking
posted by quin at 3:45 PM on March 3, 2009

I have not seen this film. I have suffered through four hours of Scorsese's disaster musical 'New York, New York', and I think that was enough.

Cocaine, it's a helluva drug.
posted by dydecker at 3:49 PM on March 3, 2009

Captain EO makes Jack look like Godfather III.
posted by cazoo at 3:52 PM on March 3, 2009

Wow -- I always thought the existence of The Rainmaker was bizarre. Now I know why.
posted by crickets at 4:11 PM on March 3, 2009

Coppola's 'Duel in the Sun'? a folly? and yet - hmm. Haven't seen it since I was a kid - will re-watch, thanks for the post.
posted by jettloe at 4:13 PM on March 3, 2009

Put me down in the admirer column. I haven't seen it in years but always had the
feeling Coppola was ahead of his time with this one.
Nice post.
posted by archaic at 4:23 PM on March 3, 2009

I'm only aware of the film because of Tom Waits's soundtrack album, which is ok but hardly among his best. Anyway, thanks for an interesting post. Might have to see the damn thing now.
posted by Dumsnill at 4:28 PM on March 3, 2009

Yeah, I sort of love this movie myself.
posted by padraigin at 4:29 PM on March 3, 2009

The horror. The horror.
posted by never used baby shoes at 6:12 PM on March 3, 2009

I loved that movie. Wasn't it, at the end, the male and female lead characters are getting on a plane, and something happens, and the female demands that the male sing her a song, and he sings "You are my Sunshine"? Such naked emotion. So beautiful.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 7:07 PM on March 3, 2009

FFC introduces tetro, starring vincent gallo! his first original screenplay since the conversation :P
posted by kliuless at 8:04 PM on March 3, 2009

I think about this movie all the time, oddly enough, because I'm always weaving through pedestrian traffic in New York--the connection being that One From the Heart has the best blocking of all time (particularly of people walking through city streets)!
posted by johnasdf at 8:22 PM on March 3, 2009

I like that in the little piece to camera he manages to say it's his first screenplay since the conversation because of "the way my career developed" rather than "I WAS PAYING FOR THOSE FUCKING SETS"
posted by fullerine at 1:29 AM on March 4, 2009 [1 favorite]

Could Coppola have been any more mislead in his portrayal of innocent romanticism in the depths of Lost Wages? It is sad that apparently great minds could have been dazzled by a little neon. In most any other city setting, this movie probably would have worked. What DID work cinematically in Lost Wages was depravity-soaked gems like Leaving Las Vegas. I grew up in Nevada, so I speak with a modicum of authority. So you can lay off the "puritan" criticisms.
posted by telstar at 2:43 AM on March 4, 2009

It's no At Long Last Love, I'll tell you what.
posted by Spatch at 5:44 AM on March 4, 2009

I love this movie. The technical aspects alone are enough to recommend it. It's a freaking beautiful movie and an impressive example of what a director can accomplish in the studio.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:31 AM on March 4, 2009 [1 favorite]

What Thorzdad said... plus the soundtrack. What's not to love?
posted by DaddyNewt at 8:41 AM on March 4, 2009

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