Seen any good films lately? [3]

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Post by Forest Shepherd Fri Dec 24, 2021 7:36 pm

I saw Rififi (1955) last night with my mom. I had no idea that Ocean's 11 was based so much on that movie. Down to the recently-released-buddy gets help from his friend concerning a poker game.
It's a very early heist movie, so it doesn't have the pizzazz of newer films. Not bad though! Wild how far the genre has come, and how far security technology has come.

I was lazy and saw Don't Look Up this morning too. I was worried that it would be nothing but Trump-bashing (through allegory) and back-patting for two hours, but it has much to delight any kind of viewer. Funny, satirical, well-paced, I really liked it. One cares about the main characters, which also means it is well-written I suppose. Smile

Oh and it had a nice prayer scene too. I really appreciate these brief moments in pop culture when faith is presented sincerely. Usually its ridicule, subversion, and easy comedy when it comes to Christianity in popular movies and shows. That kind of thing gets so tiresome.
How to explain... it's like if whenever you were reading about Tolkien's work, the discussion or writing came at it from a critical angle that focused in on how orcs are based on stereotypes and there aren't enough women. Let's focus in on something that someone has called a negative aspect to the exclusion of any other ideas.
Like when cattle were brought up for some reason the other day, and the only thing my nephew had to say was about how their methane is bad for the environment. Such a dumbed-down Reddit factoid. Nothing about how delicious they are, what a delight cheese and cream is, their long eyelashes, wet noses, the way their tails stand up straight when they run, their gentle demeanour (maybe not the bulls so much).

Well I got off track there, but you get the idea. Yeah, Don't Look Up, fun times. The director, Adam McKay, you would know from basically all of those Will Ferrel comedies. Anchorman 1 & 2, Talladega Nights, Step-brothers, The Other Guys. And stuff like The Big Short.

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Post by Lancebloke Wed Jan 05, 2022 5:09 pm

Watched Dune last weekend. I actually quite liked it... a nice slow burner that takes its time rather than following an explosion with sex, a car chase and then a bigger explosion.

Looking forward to part 2.
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Post by Mrs Figg Sat Jan 08, 2022 9:29 pm

Watched Dune, one of the most deadly dull films I have ever seen. Couldn't watch all of it, glazed over with tedium.
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Post by halfwise Sat Jan 08, 2022 9:52 pm

My dad preferred the Lynch version for much the same reasons. I actually like much of the Lynch version, except for the parts that drive me into a frothing rage. My main reason for preferring the Villanueve version is I never wanted to twist his head off at any point. Other than that I'd prefer the Lynch version.

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Post by Mrs Figg Sat Jan 08, 2022 9:59 pm

The Lynch version is in a different league. its a bit camp but is never boring.
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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sun Jan 09, 2022 1:23 pm

{{ Yup for all its flaws at least Lynchs version is never dull, has more interesting representation of characters and worlds (for good and worse) and is a visual feast for the eyes. This version is dull, washed out looking and the characters often seem flat as a sheet of paper. }}

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Post by Mrs Figg Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:23 pm

This version has all the charm of a dentists waiting room. The so called 'funny' bits fell flat, "I am smiling" um.. ok.
It was somewhat saved by the actress who plays Paul's mother, but even she failed to get close to the Lynch version, Francesca Annis was luminous in that role.
The battle scenes, seen it a thousand times before, it was a ponderous and shallow waste of celluloid. Who gives a shit about Kendaya looking like Kendaya in a perfume ad.
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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sun Jan 09, 2022 2:32 pm

{{ I really wasnt a fan of Jessica in this new version. She seemed out her depth, not knowledgable or aware enough of what was going on. A far cry from the bene gessirit trained, in control women of the books or Lynch's version.
For example when Paul is being tested she recites the litany against fear outside the door instead of Paul saying it as he is the one trying to overcome his fear in the test. It makes her seem weaker and more afraid than her book or Lynch's counterpart and theres quite a few examples of this sort of undermining of her to presumably make her seem more vulnerable. }}

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Post by chris63 Sun Jan 23, 2022 3:42 am

Watched the Eternals. I no it got slagged off, but me and the Mrs enjoyed it.

Venom let there be carnage was not very enjoyable. Thought the first one was great, but doubt I'll ever watch the 2nd one again.

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Post by malickfan Tue Jan 25, 2022 6:38 pm

Watched three films last week:

Kubo And The Two Strings-great animation, and just the right length but a kinda generic and undercooked storyline? 7/10

Ad Astra-well made...but a bit dull? 6.5/10

Spiderman: No Way Home-lengthy, cheesy and pakced with fan service but a lot of heart and good natured humour...I've not actually seen the other two Tom Holland spiderman films (and less than half the other marvel films) so much of the references were lost on me, but overall I really enjoyed this-Andrew Garfield/Alfred Molina stole the show though. It's still a fairly generic and tropey superhero film but one of the best I've seen in recent years. 8/10

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Post by chris63 Wed Jan 26, 2022 11:12 pm

Only watched one spiderman film. Far from home I think it was. I wasn't impressed.

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Post by chris63 Wed Jan 26, 2022 11:14 pm

Agree with Ad Astra. A film you could only watch once.

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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Jan 27, 2022 12:21 pm

yep Ad Astra, I was underwhelmed.
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Post by Lancebloke Thu Jan 27, 2022 1:28 pm

Watched the film "Don't Look Up" this week.

Was half funny and half not. I find Jonah Hill an incredibly annoying actor in pretty much everything I have seen him in. I think to the point now where if he is in a scene then by default it is ruined.

Anyway, I am sure a lot of what was portrayed wouldn't be hugely far from the truth if it happened in real life but just make sure you leave your brain in a drawer as you won't need it.
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Post by halfwise Sun Feb 13, 2022 4:03 am

Just caught The Imitation Game on telly. I think someone else had reviewed it a few years ago here. There were a couple of things they rather deliberately got wrong: Alan Turing was actually rather popular with his co-workers, not the sort of semi-autistic character that people seem to want to portray geniuses to be. My bigger gripe was making him the sole instigator of the computing machine used to break the enigma, with everyone else doubting and ignoring the whole idea for months. Nothing could be further from the truth - the Turing was central to the design it was a group effort from the start. All this is common knowledge so were deliberate choices on the part of the screen writer.

But these are largely forgiven due to the excellence of the writing. Truly well crafted and enjoyable. It may have been less entertaining if Turing was correctly portrayed as affable. And it would have been too complex to get across how he contributed to the machine design, easier to attribute it all largely to him. So I'll let it go because the end result was agreeable. Thumbs up from me.

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Post by Forest Shepherd Sun Feb 13, 2022 6:01 am

Truth is a necessary sacrifice on the altar of storytelling.


I saw Zulu the other night. Quite enjoyed Michael Cain's officer. And the Zulu war-chants and choreography was quite excellent. The climactic scene of the final defense with the triple-rotation firing lines... Excellent stuff!

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Post by halfwise Sun Feb 13, 2022 1:45 pm

PJ based the beginning of the seige of Helm's Deep on Zulu. Haven't seen Zulu, but now that I know Michael Caine is in it I'll have to give it a look.

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Post by Forest Shepherd Sun Feb 13, 2022 3:24 pm

Oh yeah I can see that. Well PJ's opening is not as cool as in Zulu. The shield-beating of the Zulu is far more effective than the stamping of the orcs.

It's quite a dated movie in one very important sense: the fighting!
(Disregarding the reality that no soldiers were stabbed at Rorke's Drift: all casualties were shot by the enemy. While in the movie many Welshman are stabbed.)
But yeah, it has a lot of dated nonsense. Including such gems as the "jab-your-pistol-forward-when-firing" technique that we all know works soooo well in reality. I mean it makes the bullet go faster right? rofl.
Yeah no, real life isn't Wanted.
And the reaction of the actors when they are shot. The "freeze-and-slowly-fall-over" school of shooting victims. All one needs to do now-a-days is to look up an actual shooting video to see that not only do people not stiffen and fall over when instantly killed by a bullet. (They crumple as all the strength leaves their limbs.) But it is often the case that a person shot, even one who is mortally wounded, will continue to move for some time after the impact.

But, alas, it was the standard of the day. Still, damn, one wishes for a good choreographer to be involved.

And, ya know, kinda pisses me off that even with all the war and bloodshed in the first half of the twentieth century, we still weren't able to get a decent stunt choreographer in there who knew what a wounded man actually does in battle when he's hit.

I mean, fuck me, there wasn't even the survival instinct of checking on the wounded location. Shot in a limb  the soldiers and warriors just flop on their backs and turn their grimacing faces to the heavens. Grab your damn leg, protect the wound! Huddle!

But yeah, all that said, there are some good character moments. And for its time the battle must have been legendary if it can still inspire after all these years.

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Post by Mrs Figg Sun Feb 13, 2022 3:39 pm

I think Zulu is still a thrilling film even now I get the sense of hopelessness against all the massive odds. What gets me is this is one of the only times Michael Cain plays a posh upper class person, I can tell his cockney accent is just trying to burst out, but kudos to him for his acting skills.
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Post by halfwise Sun Feb 13, 2022 4:30 pm

I took a brief stage fighting class in high school (it was a performing arts school). This was a couple decades after the period Forest is talking about, where people who got hit by a bullet would throw their arms out and back, which basically propels the chest forward. Fortunately things had progressed and the teacher used those embedded images as examples of what NOT to do: he said the proper reaction was as though you are being punched, to violently crumple backwards rather than forwards. Same thing goes for guns. Funny how something so obviously wrong in retrospect can last for so long in performance culture. But actors tend not to think about basic physics until it's pointed out.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sun Feb 13, 2022 4:37 pm

{{ Film tropes exist because audiences get uncomfy when they are absent- take every film with swords ever made, they all have that metallic ringing sound when a sword is sheathed or unsheathed, when scabbards are leather and dont make any real noise when a sword is drawn- but take it out a film and audiences miss the cue and so feel something is missing. Same with scifi weapons- any sort of phaser/ray gun/ laser gun you wouldn't see red lines flashing out of it travelling to the target- its light its moving at the speed of light, but we are so used to the idea of bullets travelling that way thats what is replicated for future weapons too. And take it out, have trigger pulled person instantaneously drops down dead at other side of the room and folk get confused.}}

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Post by Forest Shepherd Mon Feb 14, 2022 4:03 am

True, true.

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Post by halfwise Sun Mar 13, 2022 3:18 am

Booksmart.  One of the funniest films I've seen in a long time.  Sort of loses hilarity when they finally get to the party and some dreams semi come true, but doesn't kill the brilliance of the first 75%. Olivia Wilde as director definitely kept her actors percolating.

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Post by azriel Sun Mar 13, 2022 11:20 am

Lead me to the funny farm but, I watched all 3 LOTRs extended version films this last week. Its all so wrong in many places but it had the best music score, the actors were real in the sense they didnt have Vidal sassoon waiting in the wings to "do" their hair, they got grity, dirty & wet. I loved the outfits, the armoury, the set designs, the honesty on Eomers face at finding his sister wounded is the best, I got sucked in. The Trolls wagging their tiny tails like upright Rhino's, I let go & let it wash over me like a fantasy film should. I could still pick that many OMG moments but, this time I chose not to.
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Post by halfwise Sun Mar 13, 2022 12:38 pm

I've always said LotR films got it about 80% right, and it's good movie making. We just bitch because it was close enough to doing it right that it's that much more painful to see how close we came to getting it all. If anything there will be less bitching about Amazon's coming apocalypse because it will be a total write-off from the get-go.

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