As lifelong Mark Twain, er, how shall I put it, "camp follower?", fan? Whatever, I have followed the discussion of Burns' "Mark Twain" with great interest and have learned much. I will not comment on all the various points of view, for all have their validity. I will say, however, that I learned much from Ms. Bradley's two messages and will always have her comments in mind whenever I see a documentary in future.
I am afraid I must admit that I enjoyed Burns' Twain very much however simplified it was and I, too, love banjo music. I am also afraid that I very much enjoy Burns' style, however forulaic it may be as well...if only he could've found unknown letter writers commenting on Twain as he did in "The Civil War."...sigh. I have, however, been disappointed in his films, in particular, his film on Jefferson. I found it to be somewhat simplified in much the same way as the Twain film...simplified a man every bit as much as conflicted and complex as Twain.
However, Burns won me over with the Sullivan Ballou letter in "The Civil War, " and in the hopes of discovering another gem as wonderful as that letter, I will faithfully watch every one of his documentaries in future.
And Ms. Bradley, it is my hope that you will find the funding for your Twain film, for, I, too, cannot imagine too much Twain anywhere....best of luck with British television, and do keep us posted.
I find I have rambled much and hope this has made some sense. I worked 9 hours behind an espresso bar yesterday making lattes, mochas, cinnamon mochas, and the dreaded frappacinos yesterday and I have yet to recover.