Field of Dreams : Mann is NOT dead,

Mann is NOT dead,

I'm just tired of all of the Terrence Mann is dead threads. He is not dead nor does he die when he goes into the corn. Those who have read the story know that Mann in the movie is simply a stand in for the very much alive today and real recluse J.D. Salinger. The fictional "Boat Rocker" is also a stand in for "The Catcher and the Rye." The whole point of Ray bringing Mann to Iowa is so he will be inspired to write again and thus "Ease his Pain."

One more little difference, in the book Salinger gets to see the Polo Grounds instead of Ebbets Field as the team he misses is the Giants, not the Dodgers.

Am Yisrael Chai!

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

You'll never convince those that think he is dead that he isn't. There are people like you and myself that "get it" and I pride myself on my being one of those that do so.

That ought to get me some nice responses.

He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

I agree. I also pointed out another thing. Why would Mark have seen him & not the baseball players if he was dead? You know the exchange

Mark: Who is this?
Ray: This happens to be Terrance Mann
Mark: Yeah sure, nice to meet you I'm the Easter Bunny."

I used that on another thread the other day. Just doesn't make sense. I try to respect their opinions, but he's not dead!



Ray, am I using you...yes...shutup!-Rainman

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Umm, plus there were news reports while they were traveling that Mann had disappeared from his home, and Mann called his mother.

It's good to be the King!

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

I agree. I also pointed out another thing. Why would Mark have seen him & not the baseball players if he was dead? You know the exchange

Mark: Who is this?
Ray: This happens to be Terrance Mann
Mark: Yeah sure, nice to meet you I'm the Easter Bunny."

I used that on another thread the other day. Just doesn't make sense. I try to respect their opinions, but he's not dead!



Mark was dead too



I don't need you to tell me how good my coffee is. .

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

He was miserable while he was alive until the very end when he was happy and therefore able to die.

It's about inspiring him to write again, not physically being able to do so. Also, remember that the story does not directly match any particular person as the story has taken many liberations to make the characters work for 'Field of Dreams'. Therefore, J.D. Salinger being alive at the time is of not the truth of the character portrayed in the story.

It's not about him actually writing again, rather that he becomes inspired to write again. If he died prior to meeting Ray, he would have died and gone to heaven not living in the field of his dreams because he was uninspired. He would have lived in a happier place than earth, just not the one he knew as a younger version of himself, as a visionary writer.

The reason why he is dead at the end of the movie is because he can't visit heaven and come back to write about it. I can't think of any movie where this is possible, it's unrealistic. Instead the movie allows him to die as a happy soul in the field of his dreams. They could have done it in a way that would make it work better for the viewers. He's not dead until that point though because he did interact with people, his soul was dead that was the point.



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Re: Mann is NOT dead,

"The reason why he is dead at the end of the movie is because he can't visit heaven and come back to write about it"

Who says? There are no set rules.

" I can't think of any movie where this is possible, it's unrealistic."

Yeah, because all the other stuff about dead baseball players coming back to life and playing ball on this farm was believable up to that "unrealistic" part.

He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

As I said before, based on the guidelines that the movie provides at the beginning of the movie, it is not possible for you to cross into the field and disappear unless you are dead. Just like if you are dead and you walk off the field and toward the bleachers, you can no longer play ball. These are set rules provided by the movie in the first few scenes.

If you don't realize that movies, even fantasy, have guidelines that when followed can make a movie feel realistic, then I have no idea what you're doing while watching movies. What's unrealistic is presenting rules that are then broken with no rhyme or reason. It breaks the viewers experience from being a part of the story because it lacks the very structure it originally set up for the audience.

Do you really just think that they throw a story together with no structure?! That there aren't acts that are set to tell a story?! That even in fantasy that guidelines aren't created to structure the core of the movie?!

A movie has to be grounded in laws it creates in order to work. Avatar was realistic in that no matter what happened in the movie, humans needed masks to breathe. If you suddenly saw people walking around without masks you would be completely confused by why they had them on one second and the were off 2 seconds later. WHy where masks then?!

See guidelines!

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

"Do you really just think that they throw a story together with no structure?! "

What I think is that they did not reveal all of the "rules" to us. Sometimes there are details that are intentionally left out for us to wonder about.

There are no set rules for movies and there doesn't have to be.

The film never explains to us just how Ray finds himself back in 1972 and it also never explains how a young version of Moonlight Graham is suddenly hitchhiking in 1989.

If the dead players can come back into even a small part of the"real world" such as that field then it also could suggest that the living could go into the world that the dead ballplayers came from.






He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Ding ding ding. Right answer, exclusivelyemmy. I would go even further and say that more than those in almost any other genres, fantasy and science fiction tales have to establish their own rules and then follow them. They require a willing suspension of disbelief on the part of the audience, the characters and sometimes both in order to work. But when they do, you don't see the gears whirring.

Ray talks at one point about "the cosmic tumblers all locking into place," and I for one feel that they do in Field Of Dreams. He also looks over the field once it's finished and says with a mixture of self-satisfaction and bemusement, "I've just created something totally illogical." And it seems that way for months and months until Shoeless Joe comes to play. Everything unfolds very smoothly from there.

Apparently, a lot of people liked Field Of Dreams better when it was remade 10 years later as The Sixth Sense.



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Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Actually, it should be "those who do." Use "who" when referring to people; "that" when referring to things. Although no one does this anymore, it's textbook grammar. :)

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Re: Mann is NOT dead,

the moment mr mann walked into the cornfield coupled with shoeless joe saying basically 'you cant come with us' and the ominous music made me think he was dead and thats when i was a kid first seeing the film. even now it still makes more sense because they picked up ANOTHER dead guy in archie....but a younger version of himself

IM RUNNIN THIS MONKEY FARM NOW FRANKENSTEIN! AND I WANNA KNOW WHAT THE F&$K UR DOIN WITH MY TIME!

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Mann was alive. He had an apartment, the gas station attendant knew where it was, Mann interacted with others, he was reported missing by his father, Mark sees him immediately... I'm pretty shocked that some think he was dead the whole movie.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

I think the reason Ray cannot enter the corn like Mann does at the end, isn't because he is not dead, but simply because it isn't his time. Alive or dead, Ray needs to stay in the "real" world as he has more work to do.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Sure, he interacted with people...believers. Maybe he died in his apartment many days before. It actually makes sense, as the report of his disappearance sure happened fast otherwise.

But then we have him interacting with a non-believer in the form of Ray's brother-in-law. So, I guess he's not dead.

Not until he enters the corn. Now he's dead.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Hmm, I'm not entirely convinced that his dying coincides with him going into the corn. He's invited to go out with them, but possibly on the intention to rejuvinate life into him again, and get his writing started again, which would allow him to write about the experience, which in turn will bring people to the field. If he did die in the corn, there should be some sort of physical body left behind. But where would that occur? I think it was meant for him to be rejuvinated again and write and bring happiness to him AND bring people to the field.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

This ain't Cocoon. :>)

But the point about the body is a good one. Either...

A. He just won't leave a body. Maybe that's what happens to most missing persons. They go to heaven in a different way. Or...

B. He already died back at the apartment. He's been dead for days. Costner is interacting with his ghost. And so are all the believers along the way.
(but then who was driving the bus?!?!? Kramer, that's who!)

This is fun. Despite me wanting the rules not to allow his temporary admittance, and how it is counter to the entire story, I guess he was given an exclusive look into beyond. He must return. I'VE GOT IT!!!! Terrence Mann is Pete Rose! Yes, that's it!

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Lol, though James Horner said he would only do the score to this if it was along the same lines as Cocoon :)

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Actually, I'm surprised anyone thinks Terrence died upon going into the corn.
I thought it was painfully obvious he was invited to visit where they go, return to the field and begin writing about the experience for a new book, which he cites:

Terrence: "Ray, listen to me Ray, listen to me: there is something out there Ray, and if I have the courage to go through with this, what a story it'll make: Shoeless Joe Jackson Comes to Iowa."

Heck, Ray even grills him about this:

Ray: "You gonna write about it?"

Terrence: "Well... (you bet) I'm gonna write about it!"

Ray: "You're gonna write about it."

Terrence: "That's what I do."

Ray: "Good. (shuffles feet) Good."


When Annie asks where Terrence is going, Ray demands a full description, and Annie calls out to Terrence who's walking away, saying "be careful!"

You don't tell someone "be careful" if you know they're dying. You tell someone that when you expect their return sometime in the near future.

Terrence was doing something no one else gets to do: cross the plane of existence into ethereal "heaven" and return to talk about it, no worse for wear. Why this baffles anyone to any other cockamamie theory is beyond me.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Exactly. I've watched this film a number of times, but only when it's on TV and I miss bits and pieces. Up until now, I always thought that Mann died when walking into the cornstalks at the end. But it was just on and I watched the whole film intently from the beginning, and it seems so clear. He doesn't die. He is given an exclusive offer, and will return. It's like Ray playing catch with his dad at the end. Mann is now in an entirely good place and at peace, but he is STILL ALIVE, and will return to his passion when he gets back; writing again.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Or, he's going to write in heaven, just like these ball players are doing their thing. Or, maybe he really did get that exclusive offer.

Good arguments can be made for either. But if there must be one right answer, it makes more sense that he's dead. It better keeps with the story. If there could be exceptions to the rules, then Doc Graham could've gone back.

Terrence Mann is dead, and I don't feel so good myself.


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Yes. For many years, I always thought he died, but just recently, I have thought otherwise. I suppose this is one of the great debates. Wonder if the filmmakers ever said anything regarding this. Was he ready to go, or did he have more to live for in the human sense, knowing now he is inspired to write again and made new friends, and can watch the baseball he's wanted to watch for ages.

I think his wanting to write again is a great catalyst for bringing people to the field, as I would think it would be more difficult for people to believe a farmer who says come see imaginary baseball players, regarding this. And Mann, as a great well-known writer would help the situation exponentially, and have people come so that it starts assisting in paying for the upkeep and such.

Burt Lancaster was amazing. He only had a few short scenes, but those were the most powerful scenes in the film. Each one tearful. It's great that Graham finally got his at bat. But he also got recognition and respect, and became a legend. So while he may not be able to enjoy playing again, it's a good consolation that he got his recognition in the baseball universe too in addition to his already-known respect in the real world.

James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.

I heard James Earl Jones talk at a school lecture, and he said that Terrence Mann was dead.

Re: James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.

"I heard James Earl Jones talk at a school lecture, and he said that Terrence Mann was dead." -

Before or after he entered the corn?

Re: James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.


Before or after he entered the corn?

I guess he didn't really specify, but the way he said it made it sound like his character was dead from start to finish. He said that his character was dead during the film, not that his character died during the film.

Re: James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.

No disrespect to James Earl Jones, but if he said that Terrance Mann was dead from start until finish, then he was wrong.

As someone else pointed out, there were news reports that said he was missing (after he left with Ray). If he were already dead, why would the news reports say that?

Re: James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.


If he were already dead, why would the news reports say that?


Because they hadn't found the body yet?

I think its fairly obvious. Mann was knocked off by Beulah!





Let's never come here again because it would never be as much fun.

Re: James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.

He did not specifically state that his character was dead from start to finish. He just said that his character was dead.

The way he said that made it sound like his character was a ghost like all of the other people who entered the cornfield.

I agree that it doesn't make sense that Mann was dead at the beginning of the film. My personal belief is that Mann dies after Ray takes him home from the baseball game, and that when Ray starts to drive away and finds Mann standing in the middle of the street, it is Mann's spirit that gets back in the car.

Re: James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.

You mean to tell me a dead guy was driving the red VW microbus? I wish I could get my mom to drive!

Also, that means Terry was dead when he called his father to let him know he was OK. This isn't unheard of (phone calls from dead people, I mean) but it's pretty unlikely that's what they meant.

Nope, I think JEJ blew this one. I don't think Terry was dead at all. I think the whole idea was to let him in temporarily to get an exclusive, then come back and write about it. Which he said was what he was going to do. What, you've never heard of "near death experience"?

I'm all right, I'm alllll right!

Re: James Earl Jones said that Terrence Mann was dead.

explains why he was such a bad driver.



I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"

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Re: Mann is NOT dead,

It's funny you mentioned that because when I watched the movie on CMT last night I remembered that Mann was J.D. Salinger and that it was "The Catcher in the Rye" that Ray was referring to. I didn't remember the Polo Grounds, however, but I haven't read the book since 1989. I may have to dredge up a copy of the book and re-read it.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Salinger just died last month so in a way Mann IS dead now. :-P

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

no, he's alive. he talked to the ballgame vendors, drove the car, met Ray's bro-in-law, was reported in newspapers, etc.

now does he die when he walks into the cornfield? maybe.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

he also talked to the people at the newspaper and bar in Chisholm.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

The Mann we see/meet in the movie is to Ray in "Field of dreams" as Tyler Durden is to Edward Norton in "Fight Club." Mann was a great writer from Ray's childhood explaining the influence and why Ray would want him to write again. When Ray who just drove to Boston to meet Terrance Mann Cant find him, he invents his own, explaining why Mann is so extremely different from who he "Expects" when Ray first meets him. We never see Ray and Terrance talking to the same person at the same time(Except maybe the news paper lady in Minnesota, which might ruin the whole thing... oh well...). Mark can't see him explaining the "Right, I'm the Easter Bunny." comment. We never actually see Mann making the phone call to his father, and immediately Ray is in 1972, which might have been his way of coping with the inability to "Easy his pain." now that he was reported missing.

Personally I believe Mr. Mann was alive the whole movie, but it's fun to think about this kinda stuff!

Re: Mann is NOT dead,


We never see Ray and Terrance talking to the same person at the same time(Except maybe the news paper lady in Minnesota, which might ruin the whole thing... oh well...).


Damn those blind alleys …. back up back up beep beep beep

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Yeah, I saw something awhile back where they said he was a ghost. But this is the the I see dead people movie. He interacted with people along the way. He wasn't dead. It seemed as if to be honest that going to Iowa brought him back to life. He said he would come back and write about it. I am still waiting for him to come back and write about it.

My Sig: Nothing Here.

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Mann was dead. Everyone was dead. There's little to nothing in this movie to lead one to think otherwise.

I don't need you to tell me how good my coffee is. .

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

There is nothing in this movie that suggests that anyone but the ballplayers were dead.

He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

I think there's more to suggest they're all dead, especially if you accept certain consistencies among the living world and the dead. If Joe can't cross the line, then there's no reason why Archie can. Archie not only crossed the line, but aged 60 years, was able to dislodge a hotdog from the girl's throat- out in the real world, then cross back over as the old man. Archie was also hitchhiking on the highway. Ray traveled through time, as did Archie.

However, if you want to just accept it as a jumbled mess of "eh, whatevers", that's fine too. but the more I watch it, the more I'm inclined to see everyone as dead.



I don't need you to tell me how good my coffee is. .

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

So thw whole town was dead and they all knew what year it was? Then all the people in the city of Boston were dead including the actual players on the field at Fenway Park?

He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Yes, the town was dead. Basically, the town was a purgatory, which is why they remain there - hostile skeptics to Ray hearing voices and the Constitution...and the possibilities of what lies beyond.
But watch in Boston and how many people did they actually interact with? The hot dog vendor? That's about it. I don't even think there was any physical connection with them.
It was only Mann and Ray who saw the board change.

I don't need you to tell me how good my coffee is. .

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

You're not fooling me. I'm on to you.



He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

It's just a hypothesis. It's not like I'm stating it as a fact. But there are telltale signs throughout the film that lead me to think this way.

I might be pushing it with the purgatory/townfolk hypothesis though. But it's obvious the "ghosts" exist anywhere and everywhere in Ray's journey so why not?





I don't need you to tell me how good my coffee is. .

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Well I have to say that while I understand what you are saying I really don't believe that they are all dead. We see Ray interact with Boston citizens trying to find out where Mann lives.
At Fenway they buy beers and Hot Dogs and we see those men. We know they bought tickets so someone had to sell them the tickets. There are other things as well.

He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


Re: Mann is NOT dead,

He interacts with dead people.
When was the last time you saw two 70-year olds slinging dogs and beers at a Fenway snack bar? With Ray and Mann as the only customers..?
(Now my memory's a little fuzzy on this, but I don't think Ray or Mann actually touch the dogs & beer, not that it would support or negate my theory either way)

The people on Mann's block- also dead. Not all of them. Probably just the ones Ray interacts with.

The lady at the newspaper- dead.

(When someone "buys the farm" they die) I don't think those guys with Mark said a word- possibly working for the devil to get Ray to sell the farm.

Mann never actually talks to his son

Mann's mailbox "Tye Dyed" = Ty(Cobb) Died (not relevant, just a humorous connection to baseball I noticed)

I don't need you to tell me how good my coffee is. .

Re: Mann is NOT dead,

Last time? Everytime I go to a game where I live I see that. Every time.

He's taking the knife out of the Cheese!
Do you think he wants some cheese?


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