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Stool Pigeons and Pine Overcoats: The Language of Gangster Films (2006)

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Title: Stool Pigeons and Pine Overcoats: The Language of Gangster Films (Video 2006)

Stool Pigeons and Pine Overcoats: The Language of Gangster Films (Video 2006) on IMDb 6.3/10

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Credited cast:
Drew Casper
Larry Cohen
Haden Guest
Patricia King Hanson
Lincoln Hurst
Rick Jewell
Eric Lax
Nicholas Pileggi


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Documentary | Short





Release Date:

18 September 2006 (USA)  »

Box Office


$20,000 (estimated)

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Did You Know?


This short documentary is included on the DVD of EACH DAWN I DIE, part of the 2006 Warner Home Video DVD release "The Warner Bros. Pictures Tough Guys Collection". See more »

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A Brief But Interesting Conversation
20 February 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Although this documentary is very short, and thus not very in-depth, it does raise two interesting points.

One, apparently there were only two ways to talk in early films -- with excellent English, or like a gangster. And gangsters talked the way regular people talked. This suggests that it was the people talking correctly who were strange and the gangsters who were actually a good reflection of society. Oh?

And two, the question is raised: did the movies imitate gangsters, or did the gangsters imitate movies? Of course, the correct answer is both. Gangsters who grew up with gangster movies would surely emulate their heroes and borrow the language, and to some degree the films had to be based on real people and events. As for the origins of such terms as "stool pigeons" and "pine overcoats", the answer is never really explored here. Unfortunately.

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