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Friday, October 18, 2013

From the movie Charly

From the 1968 movie Charly, directed by  Ralph Nelson:

Charly asks his teacher to punctuate the following:

"That that is is that that is not is not is that it is is"

She declares that it makes no sense. It's a beautiful moment when Charly, then, shows off for the first time and adds punctuation marks to reach the following meaningful sequence:

"That that is, is. That that is not, is not. Is that it? It is."


Alan said...

I loved that book "Flowers for Algernon" and the movie as well. Of course the book is better, but Cliff Robertson deserved the Oscar.

This reminds me of the familiar poser from many editions of Copi, where he asks how to make this passage intelligible:

Jill where Jack had had had had had had had had had had had the teacher's approval.

One of my proudest moments was that I got this instantly.

Brit Brogaard said...



Jill, where Jack had had "had", had had "had had". "Had Had" had had the teacher's approval.

But we need some serious hidden time adverbials here. Besides the time of utterance I think we might we need three additional reference times?