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 Last Movie you Watched?

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Largo's Shark
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 10:38 am

It's also Irons and Cronenberg's best film.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:06 am

I find Cronenberg a pain in the arse, although I guess he has his moments (I loved THE FLY, quite liked THE DEAD ZONE and M. BUTTERFLY and tolerated EASTERN PROMISES). Truth be told, I did try to watch DEAD RINGERS way back in the day but found it distasteful and dull. Still, if you and Harms like it I'll give it another go.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:07 pm

Loomis wrote:
I can't even think what his last film was - seems he hasn't been part of the celluloid scene for a few years now), but I've noticed that his presence in a flick tends to improve it quite a bit. He's by far the best thing about DIE HARD WITH A VENGEANCE and STEALING BEAUTY, for instance.
Irons has been consistently busy, but he hasn't been a part of a remarkable project for quite some time now.

Loomis wrote:
And I'll have to see DEAD RINGERS. I recall, Harms, that you recently cited it as the best film of its year.
Yep. It's probably the best-directed horror film I've ever seen. I say this as one, like you, who doesn't particularly love Cronenberg.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:46 pm

Conan the Barbarian (2011)

Much like Captain America this whole film felt more to me like one long, long action montage than a genuine unfolding tale, it's all just way too disjointed and superficial. The cast should be decent but characters are bland in the extreme, the minimalistic dialogue is mumbled without any passion at a pace that makes you feel they had taxis waiting on a meter. Of course its an action movie and action does explode on the screen with relentless frequency, the camera shakes wildly, bloody severed appendages cascade about the screen and copious gore splatters every which way, but there's no build in pace, no establishing threat nor escalation, never once do these sequences manage to engage or involve, it simply becomes a case of 'yeaaahhh stuff's happening' and I just don't care. Even the score was instantly forgettable.

The 1982 film was no masterpiece but was nevertheless a slice of unabashed fun, with an oddly charismatic lead, decent support and a deliciously visceral score...! The 2011 effort manages to emulate none of these achievements and offers none of its own in compensation.

A very dissapointing 4/10 from me.


Last edited by lachesis on Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:46 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:46 pm

I wish Milius had been able to make his KING CONAN script.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 2:02 pm

Reversal of Fortune is so good that Ron Silver actually works as a lead.

Actually, it's probably not as good as it necessarily should be, but Irons is magnificent. And it has one of my favourite lines ever (which Disney appropriated in an amusing fashion).
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 5:17 pm



The Ides of March (2011) Dir. George Clooney

Solidly satisfying political flick. Like GOOD NIGHT AND GOOD LUCK, its solid at what it does, but having left the theatre I'm thinking "is that all?" I like films that dont over-extend their ambition, but these films still need those moments that make you punch the air in front of you. Moments that raise the eyebrow and give you the feeling that you're watching something excellent. This film is all solid, but it lacks the moments that make a film really zing.

And I want to lnow what Jeffrey Wright got for his endorsement. Sure, we know Clooney probably sold his soul, but theres no real great feeling about it. I'm trying to care more about this film, but theres no great moments to go back to. Saying that, more films of this quality need to be round; something that shouldnt win best picture, but'll probably pick up a swag of nominations for acting and suchlike. Maybe.

Only my 3rd trip to the movies this year, funnily enough, hopefully I pick up the pace in the coming month; I have DRIVE, THE DESCENDANTS and a few others in my sights.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 5:39 pm

Farragut North was pretty slight in the first place, I thought. Enjoyable, but I'm not sure where all the acclaim comes from.

I haven't seen the film yet (I'll take a gander tomorrow), but I think Chris Pine in the role of Stephen is a more interesting choice than Gosling. With Gosling, a certain degree of innate unpleasantness is almost expected nowadays - not because of his calibre as an actor, but purely because of his choices.

The Ides of March has next to no Oscar traction at the moment, anyway. It's a bit like A Dangerous Method - some solid notices and a "consensus" leaning towards "good," but dead in the water as a serious Oscar contender. It's all about The Descendants and The Artist at the moment, with War Horse and Hugo milling about while The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo lurks about unseen.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 5:43 pm

Saw a trailer for WAR HORSE today, looked decently epic. Did like Gosling though, thought he was excellent, much like most of the cast really - but a good cast talking some decent talk for 100 odd minutes doesnt make a great film on its own.

I do enjoy following this column on the regards of Oscar noms: http://www.indiewire.com/article/2012_oscar_predictions - surely we're not too far away from the silly season kicking off?
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Fri Nov 25, 2011 6:15 pm

Oh yeah. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Goddamn Daldry.

I think the New York Critics are starting things off. Ebert apparently made a bitchy comment about them jumping the gun. Armond White replied by pointing out that at least they can afford a show.

All I know is that I'm still pissed off that we don't get Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy until January. Mid January at that. That's the one I'm hanging out for.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 5:15 am

j7wild wrote:
The Thing (2011)

4/5

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0905372/

I just watched this and the ending seque exactly into the beginning of the 1982 film - kudos to the producers of this movie for sticking to the original storyline and they even used the same soundtrack!!

Don't think that's necessarily a good thing. If you're going to remake a film at least keep things fresh. If it's just a retread, what's the point? Other than $$$ of course.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 10:41 am

Green Lantern :2*:
I think Ryan Reynold's is the single biggest problem with the film, and the people who watched it with me agree: his character isn't likable. His character isn't horrible either, but you feel like with this movie that you've seen all the elements in other films and in other films that were done better. This version of Hal Jordan *feels* like a rip-off of Pete "Maverick" Mitchell from TOP GUN, right down to the pilot father whose death casts a shadow of inadequacy over our hero.

I actually liked Hector Hammond and Parallax as villains, and they were far more interesting than Hal Jordan. Blake Lively was adequate as a top gun pilot/executive of Farris Space Industries (I've seen worse performances).

Film suffers from not having a great superhero anthem, but the biggest problem is that Ryan Reynold's just isn't all that interesting of a hero. Perhaps, just maybe, Henry Cavill could've put some teeth into this role that Reynold's couldn't. Ryan always has this hound-dog, forlorn look on his face like a puppy in love. He needs to stick to romantic comedy. Makes me think Campbell might have lost some interest in this film when his first pick (yet again) was Henry Cavill, only to be told the studio wanted a "name".

THOR :4*:

Good fun. What can I say? It just works, and it works in ways that other films in this genre have failed in the past: The Phantom, Flash Gordon. I saw it on standard dvd that was downloaded off the Internet (the first time I've probably watched something that was bootlegged or pirated), but having sampled the goods I'm definitely now going to go out and buy it on Blu-Ray. I'm sure it'll look amazing on blu-ray. The set design and special effects looked really good even on standard.

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO (Swedish version) and THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE
:4*:
Overall good adaptations, but I suspect that David Fincher's versions will be the better ones. However, I've only seen the standard, 2 hour, 5 minute version of Tattoo and 'Fire'. I"ve heard there may be up to 30-45 minutes of additional footage per film that the studios are adding back into these films to flesh them out and make them better (and of course cross-promote them with the American version), so my review may be based on incomplete material.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 10:48 am

Actually, I think Bradley Cooper was Campbell's first pick. It was down to him, Timberlake, and Reynolds at the end, and WB wanted Reynolds.

I don't know how you can "like" Parralax as a villain though. It's a giant cloud of poo.

Hector Hammond is a hoot, but the rest of the film is just unmitigated shit of the first order.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:54 pm

Thought I'd get back into the film-watching grove with a noirish afternoon...



Deadline at Dawn (1946) Dir. Harold Clurman

Another case of a film with Beymer syndrome, this RKO programmer overcomes the presence of a goofy, but likable, lead in Bill Williams to produce a sizzlingly satsifying noir. It also helps his two co-stars are Oscar winners Paul Lukas and Susan Hayward, who apparently was receiving her first top billing here.

Williams plays a sailor who emerges from a hazy night out no recollection and 1400 dollars in his pocket. Initially at a loss, he ambles into a dance hall and starts up a dance with a jaded hall girl (Hayward) who takes a bit of pity on him, and agrees to go with him to take back the money to the woman he took it from. Only problem is, she's dead. And Williams faces a fight to clear his name before his bus leaves at dawn - a trail that brings in a cabbie (Lukas), the woman's brother (Joseph Calleia), a theatre producer (Jerome Brady), her blind, bitter ex-husband (Marvin Miller) and a host of other oddities; 30s Warners character actor Joe Sawyer appears as a drunken ex-baseballer who gets the cops involved.

Also of note is this bit of trivia I found:

Quote :
Many years later, Clurman's main memory of the film was that the censorship office at RKO had visited the set and complained about the cleavage on Susan Hayward, the female lead. Clurman recalls, "... both Miss Hayward and I insisted that this was one of the more pleasing features of the picture." Clurman must have won that battle, because Hayward's cleavage remains gloriously evident throughout the film.

Clurman was a stage director whomade this as his only film, and was forever indifferent to it afterwards. Shame. Its quality noir.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 3:51 pm



Backfire (1950) Dir. Vincent Sherman

Watchable enough Warners mystery pic that features 5 over-the-title stars in Gordon MacRae (doing a rare non-musical role), Dane Clark (who I've often read about but never seen in a film), Virginia Mayo (who's usually allright, but nothing more), Viveca Lindfors (who was in the very average ADVENTURES OF DON JUAN) and Edmond O'Brien. The time is 1948, and MacRae's a former GI who's finally being released from hospital after 13 operations on his spine - he's got nurse Mayo as his sweetheart, and he's about to start ranching with best-mate O'Brien. Except he's not.

O'Brien vanished about 2 months ago and a week before his release, a mystery dame with a foreign accent comes to MacRae while he's on a sleeping drug, telling him that O'Brien's lying somewhere with a shattered spine, and needs help. But she deliberately doesnt leave an address. The doctors dismiss it as a hallucination, but once MacRae gets back to town, he investigates and in a few hours achieves more than what police chief Ed Begley's been able to do in months. Its full of twists and turns and the cast are mostly servicable (though MacRae was particularly good), but at same time, its not all that convincing. I pity the watchers in 1950 who were drawn in by the poster featuring a very vampish Mayo only to find she was playing a nurse. laugh
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 4:22 pm



Inception

Easily Hollywood's best blockbuster of the past 5 years. When everyone else settles or declines, Nolan just keeps on improving. Hopefully he has something good up his sleeve once TDKR wraps.




The Muppets

Old fashioned, nostalgic fun. With film genres becoming more and more entrenched in their fanatical fanbases and specific genres, we need films that have a broad overall appeal. The Muppets fits that bill. There is no reason to not see this film, be it in theaters or otherwise. It also one of the best looking digital films I've seen. It doesn't looks shiny, or have that classic digital red push or overly graded with hyper contrast. It looks like film, just sharper and cleaner.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 6:52 pm

Colly: I think you're working from the exact same box set I've got from the library and will be trawling through over the next week. Odd coincidence.

Saw The Ides of March, and quite liked it. It actually improves on the play, gives it a bit more heft and weight, although the characterisation of the protagonist loses a bit in translation. I hold that Chris Pine would have been better in the role (as he apparently was very good in the stage production), since he has more of a natural effervescence than Gosling, but Gosling's still very good. And holy shit, someone actually used Paul Giamatti well. I never thought I'd see that happen again.

Also, there's one scene in particular that uses sound and vision expertly (and it's amusing that you'd have a scene revolving around the sound of a phone vibrating in a movie, of all things). I think this sort of film is a lot more comfortable for Clooney's sensibilities, rather than the quirk of Confessions and the... shitness of Leatherheads.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sat Nov 26, 2011 10:02 pm

WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION. Charles Laughton is amazing.

FourDot wrote:
All I know is that I'm still pissed off that we don't get Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy until January. Mid January at that. That's the one I'm hanging out for.
Lower your expectations. TINKER, TAILOR, SOLDIER, SPY is crap.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sun Nov 27, 2011 12:34 am

HJackson wrote:
FourDot wrote:
All I know is that I'm still pissed off that we don't get Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy until January. Mid January at that. That's the one I'm hanging out for.

Lower your expectations. TINKER, TAILOR, SOLDIER, SPY is crap.

F*ck you, it's brilliant.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sun Nov 27, 2011 5:00 am

East of Eden

I love Kazan, and this is a very fine film from start to finish. Admirable story and characters, and some good performances, most notably I think by Massey and Dean. Some of the direction is stunning, such as the swing/brother's keeper scene, when Cal is swinging to and from his father, quoting the famous Cain sentence, (in this bible-inspired feast of a drama); here, dialogue and movements run in parallel lines to demonstrate the father-son relationship. Great camera here and in the whole film. This and STREETCAR I think are my favourite Kazan films of those I've seen so far.




Ran

Excellent epic film with great cinematography, admirable acting, and gripping imagery. The attack on the castle sequence that is mute with music only is very effective, one of the greatest bits of cinema I've seen so far. Rich story and characterization. I can't go into details, because the character names elude me (IMDb isn't a help here, either); I'll just say that it is a very impressive movie, and perhaps the best of the films by Kurosawa that I've seen.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sun Nov 27, 2011 10:26 am

Expendables

Execrable.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sun Nov 27, 2011 12:43 pm

THE MUPPETS (2011, dir. James Bobin)

Charming.


HUGO (2011, dir. Martin Scorsese)

A quite awkward, strange children's film that only comes to life when the film leaves behind its ersatz-Jeunet "whimsy" and becomes a long-form advertisement for film preservation.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sun Nov 27, 2011 12:49 pm

From MEAN STREETS and TAXI DRIVER to feature length adverts. Oh how ye mighty have fallen.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sun Nov 27, 2011 1:07 pm

FourDot wrote:
Actually, I think Bradley Cooper was Campbell's first pick. It was down to him, Timberlake, and Reynolds at the end, and WB wanted Reynolds.

I don't know how you can "like" Parralax as a villain though. It's a giant cloud of poo.

Hector Hammond is a hoot, but the rest of the film is just unmitigated shit of the first order.

It's true that Cooper was one of the final four to be considered for the role, but he wasn't Campbell's choice (though to later hear him tell it, Ryan Reynold's was his guy all along, but we all know that he was just regurgitating the talking points the studio gave him).

6 Jobs Cavill Lost Before Superman: http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/the_road_to_superman_6_jobs_henry_cavill_lost_before_becoming_clark_kent

Parallax works for me; I thought it was sufficiently menancing and I liked the way it sucked the life out of people. Saarsgard was so good as Hector Hammond that I almost felt sorry for Hammond; before becoming the villain, it's clear with that head of his and the thinning hair line that he was never going to be the ladies man that Hal Jordan was.

But there were other things about the movie that just didn't work (or were never attempted). For example, Hal seems to have a bigger problem believing he's been picked to be a guardian of the universe than suddenly discovering that there's millions of other aliens species in outer-space. He barely questions Abin Sur's existence before the movie just brushes it aside and moves on to something else. There is no "You've got me! Who's got you?" moment in Green Lantern. Hal just accepts the premise of alien life, and the people of Coast City suddenly accept the premise of a glowing, green super hero (of what little is actually shown of him before Parallax comes to suck Coast City dry). There is no montage (that I recall) of Green Lantern going around doing good deeds and rescuing people to establish his street cred like there was in Superman....or Iron Man.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Movie you Watched?   Sun Nov 27, 2011 1:28 pm

THE TOWN (DIRECTOR'S CUT). This extended version (by about half an hour) of Ben Affleck's highly entertaining bank robbery drama does deepen the characterisation somewhat (albeit in a rather on-the-nose kinda way at times) and clarify a couple of story points, but it fails to provide a significantly more satisfying experience than the theatrical cut, and the longer running time only makes it seem even more of a HEAT wannabe. One would not be missing out on all that much if one were to stick to the version that played in cinemas - still, in either guise THE TOWN is a cracking watch, despite its share of predictable and hokey elements and its almost embarrassing level of indebtedness to the aforementioned Michael Mann classic.
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