What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Spandau Belly on Tue Oct 21, 2008 8:03 am

DaleTremont wrote:I was on board for this movie most of the way through. It did have a very moody, noir-ish feel to it that worked up until the part at the end where she wakes up in that blonde lady's house. Then it just fell apart for me. Maybe because that blonde lady's delivery was so stilted, everything she said sounded incredibly stupid. Like a bad TV movie. Then it made the rest of the movie seem kind of shallow...if you're going to do that whole mysterious, atmospheric thriller type thing where you continually withhold information to keep the audience with you, I think you kind of have to tie it up somehow in the end. Mulholland Drive, for example, worked for me because the ending, in a really fucked up Lynch kind of way, actually made sense. This one...not so much. It was kind of underwhelming.

Also, I think Michael Madsen was miscast. Good effort, but he's just not a corporate thug. He's a regular thug.


I agree with you about that blonde woman's acting. I'm guessing she was cast because she could speak Chinese and English fluently. I think this role would've been better if Vanessa Regraves had played it with the same flirty energy she did in Mission: Impossible.

But I didn't feel that the movie fell apart at that point. I just thought she was a weak actress.

As for Madsen, well, he doesn't really seem like a typical number cruncher, but I think that's the point. I actually liked that he was an investment guruwho seemed like a thug, it gave the movie more of a sense of danger and added to that ambiguity that I liked about it.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby stereosforgeeks on Tue Oct 21, 2008 11:04 am

Honestly I loved Boarding Gate.

I'll write something up about it later today. But as of right now it's definitely one of the best 2008 movies Ive seen.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby travis-dane on Tue Oct 21, 2008 11:10 am

Damn, I got Boarding Gate like 2 months ago and I have not watched it yet. It just moved up on my Watchlist.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby caruso_stalker217 on Tue Oct 21, 2008 4:40 pm

travis-dane wrote:Damn, I got Boarding Gate like 2 months ago and I have not watched it yet. It just moved up on my Watchlist.


As a lover of most things "Asia" I should probably also watch this shit.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby DaleTremont on Wed Oct 22, 2008 2:42 am

Spandau Belly wrote:
DaleTremont wrote:I was on board for this movie most of the way through. It did have a very moody, noir-ish feel to it that worked up until the part at the end where she wakes up in that blonde lady's house. Then it just fell apart for me. Maybe because that blonde lady's delivery was so stilted, everything she said sounded incredibly stupid. Like a bad TV movie. Then it made the rest of the movie seem kind of shallow...if you're going to do that whole mysterious, atmospheric thriller type thing where you continually withhold information to keep the audience with you, I think you kind of have to tie it up somehow in the end. Mulholland Drive, for example, worked for me because the ending, in a really fucked up Lynch kind of way, actually made sense. This one...not so much. It was kind of underwhelming.

Also, I think Michael Madsen was miscast. Good effort, but he's just not a corporate thug. He's a regular thug.


I agree with you about that blonde woman's acting. I'm guessing she was cast because she could speak Chinese and English fluently. I think this role would've been better if Vanessa Regraves had played it with the same flirty energy she did in Mission: Impossible.

But I didn't feel that the movie fell apart at that point. I just thought she was a weak actress.

As for Madsen, well, he doesn't really seem like a typical number cruncher, but I think that's the point. I actually liked that he was an investment guruwho seemed like a thug, it gave the movie more of a sense of danger and added to that ambiguity that I liked about it.


Yeah Vanessa Redgrave would have been good. I also imagined Charlotte Rampling in that role. Swimming Pool had that same kind of mysterious energy that she could bring to a climactic role like the one in boarding gate. I kind of hate that all of a sudden I'm a plot-driven maniac but I still would have wanted a bit more than emotional ambiguity from Asia at the end. Maybe I just didn't watch it sober enough.

And as for the Michael Madsen part, honestly I imagined more of a Michael Douglas character. Maybe I'm just projecting icky may-december relations because of his thing with Catherine Zeta Jones but I thought someone a bit more suave than Michael Madsen would have made that relationship a bit more interesting.

...or maybe I'm looking too deeply into a movie that boasted Asia Argento squatting in black lingerie with a smoking gun in her hand...

Anyway, I also watched 13 Tzameti this week. I had pretty high expectations because I'd heard nothing but good things. It satisfied those expectations to be sure. It was a pretty amazing example of how much tension can be squeezed out of the simplest situation, and with a relatively miniscule budget. Structurally, it's a very interesting movie because, if you go into it not knowing anything about the plot, it has a bit of that mystery element that keeps you going until the main conceit is revealed. At that point mystery is substituted for something entirely straight forward, but no less intriguing. I kept waiting for something more than a game of odds played for the highest stakes possible (life and death), but they never give into that. It never turns into a game of skill or wit, even if at times it misleads you into thinking it will. Until the very end, it's the crudest and most violent form of gambling, which is even more fascinating in some ways because of its arbitrariness. Plus the director had a really good eye for staging scenes both during the shootings and in the time in between when he focused on the people between life and death. Yeah I'm kind of rambling...(damn you, red wine!)...anyway, I really liked it.

Oh and I also saw The Other Boleyn GIrl but I'm going to save my Natalie Portman rant for when I'm a bit more sober.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby DerLanghaarige on Sun Oct 26, 2008 6:12 pm

Mr & Mrs Smith
An okay No-Brainer in my opinion. Nothing special and not even something to re-watch, but with some funny ideas and some good action. There is only one thing that bothered me a little. The casting of Angelina Jolie. No, not because I think she's a bad actress. While I really think that, I gotta admit that she has a great on-screen chemistry with Pitt in this movie. It was more that I wish they would have taken the "Bourne"-route and had cast someone who doesn't look like a killer. While Brad Pitt seems like a nice guy (Hell, I even liked Tyler Durden!), you just have to look at Jolie to think "Killer Bitch"! I would have cast someone more "normal" like...I don't know. Nicole Sullivan? (But to be fair: I would cast Nicole Sullivan in everything!) But that's just a minor complaint.
7,5/10
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Bloo on Tue Oct 28, 2008 12:30 am

alright, I'm probably going to catch a lot of flack for admiting this, but since it's already out there in the OLEG thread, I might as well admit it here

I'd never seen any of THE GODFATHER movies

my OLEG brothers gave me a little bit of a hard time for it and let me say I'm glad they did because they forced me to go out and purchase 1 & 2 (held off on 3) at my local Wal-Mart

It wasn't as if I had anything against the movies, they just were never felt compelled to see

so, I watched GODFATHER(1) today, took me twice because I just got off the night shift, walked home and watched it, fell asleep just before the horse head scene. So I watched it this afternoon when I was awake and in full control

I have to say that opening scene was totally unexpected, I don't know if that was Evans (I think in EASY RIDERS, RAGING BULLS, it is mentioned that Evans had some control over the editing) or Coppola, but that VO over black, then pulling back on the man in the shadows until you get to the back of Brando's head, was mesmerizing. I talked to my brother today about that scene (he's 19) and he said it was one of the longest dullest scenes he's ever seen, but what does he know. I really don't know if this is a movie that kids gorwn up on on Bay and Tony Scott and Roland Emmerich can appciate, but I loved it.

My absolute favorite scene though is outside the hospital, the baker Enzo (which is another thing I loved, we didn't just meet people in the wedding scene for shits and giggles they had a genuine purpose and when they are introduced in Act 1 we see them again in Act 3 [Enzo] or Act 4 ["Sinatra"]), anyways Enzo and Micheal are standing outside the hospital and neither of these men are "made" they are civilans, Micheal has been protected his whole life from this and now he has to step up, they have no weapons, they are NOTHING and they have to use Micheal's intelligence to keep The Don alive. It was a chilling taunt but very quiet scene.

I also really enjoyed Brando's scene with the little boy (Anthony) toward the end of the movie with the water pump and the orange. The only other scene in the movie between Brando and children is when he gets home from the hospital and everyone is moving him in and the baby is crying and whatnot. This scene really brought up the fact that this man, this killer, criminal, etc; was a father and a grandfather who really did care about his family.

I won't say this is a perfect movie, couple things I didn't care for:

a)Talia Shire's overacting espically in the scene where she finds out her husband is cheating on here and she just starts throwing crap around. She was loud obnixious and I know we are supposed to sympathize with her because her husbands a dick who cheats on her and hits her but I didn't, I found her shrill.

b)Micheal's descent into becoming the new Don, it just felt like it happened too fast. Up to that point, he was the civilian, he was nervous when he shot the drug dealer and the cop, he never really took hiding in Sicily important. But now all of a sudden he's as cold hearted as Brando. It just didn't work for me,I think I would have liked to seen his fall from grace to happen a little more quickly. I also, honestly, didn't see what he saw in Diane Keaton. She was pretty and perfect for his life before Brando's attack and Caan's death, but I couldn't tell what he saw in her after that. Maybe that's the point of it though, he was trying to hold unto a life that was gone now. I also didn't buy his throwing Duvall under the bus if you will, Sonny I could see doing that but not Micheal. Up to that point Micheal had always talked well of Tom.

c) This is a little nitpicky but I hated when we see Vegas for the first time, we see a sign for Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, up to that point, I don't recall them mentioning J Edgar Hoover, any presidents (Truman, Roosevelt, Eisenhower, etc). There is a throw away line aobut Hitler but most of the time they don't talk about anything in the actual "culture" of America. It's a fictional studio, a fictional singer, etc, but then you see something that reminds me of our actual reality and took me away just a split second on the movie reality that had been established so well up to that point.

d) Maybe it's a lack of knowing my history of America at that period in history, but I also really questioned weather the herion (or narcotics) business was really worth starting a 6 family war over in the late 40s.

But those are just little things.

The actors were fantastic, I didn't recognize honestly Duvall until about halfway through, same with Cann and Keaton.

I also really liked how this felt like it was made in the period it was set in. The look, the feel, the music, the atmosphere. Even Coppola's limited use of the camera, using limited movements and static shots felt like something made in the 40s not the 70s.

I can see WHY this is an American classic and one of the greats. I'm anxious to see part 2 which I hear is better then 1.

Thanks guys for "making" me watch this
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Bloo on Wed Oct 29, 2008 6:23 am

The Godfather Part 2
a Bloo Review http://viewtoreview.blogspot.com/

So they say that the Godfather 2 may be the best sequel ever made, and I can't say that they are wrong, this really is a great movie. As good as The Godfather (1), it's debatable. The Godfather told an epic story of the fall of a family from power and their attempt to rise out and possibly above it. The story The Godfather Part 2 tells is really at it's heart, and in both stories (sequel and prequel) a revenge story.

What Coppola masterfully did though was tell two similar and yet different stories: The rise of the Don Corelone (Vito and Micheal) framed around revenge. I also found it interesting that Don Micheal may be more alike to his grandfather's killer then he is like his father. Despite his viciousness Vito clearly loved his family and I don't think he would have treated Fredo like Micheal did, especially after what Don Ciccio(sp?) did to Vito's family and attempted to do to Vito himself. Maybe I'm wrong here but the portrait I get of Vito from the prequel and from part 1 was that Vito viewed things as business whereas Micheal, despite what he says, takes things much more personal. Even the birthday party scene when Micheal is almost sulking, hurt by Vito and the family, you see that he is taking this personally.

The acting was again just wonderful. DeNiro was maybe not as polished as we'd see him a few years later in Raging Bulls and later in Goodfellas, he still had the kinda slump shuffle thing that he did in Mean Streets, but is really good here, although I will admit that seeing him in a film like this not directed by Martin Scorsese is strange. I think it goes back to Coppola and Scorsese 's backgrounds and experiences. FFC grew up in a musical family, almost I'd call it "high Italian" large family, where things are a family business. His father was a musician who helped with the music on his films, his mother was an actress, his sister is Talia Shire, his nephews act. I think that's why his focus, in these movies, is never on the grunts or the soldiers but on the High Mafia families. Scorsese, on the other hand, grew up in a more working class Italian family, a street family, and that's why his best gangster movies, even something like The Departed, have a focus on the mafia soldiers.

Honestly I haven't see anything with Lee Strasburg in it other then this, but I can see why there is an acting method named after him. Talia Shire didn't annoy me in this movie, in fact I kind of enjoyed her trampy performance. It was really different then Adrian, which really is her defining role. Diane Keaton still bugged me in this movie, maybe it's just the character of Kay, maybe it's Keaton's performance, I don't know but I don't like her. I talked to one of the biggest Godfather fans I know and he agrees that Keaton is annoying.

Finally JOHN CAZALE! This is the actor that played Fredo, and brought such humanity to a real jerk of a person.

Again a great movie.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby bastard_robo on Thu Oct 30, 2008 8:21 pm

Been on a horror binge as of late due to the holiday.. last night I watched FEAST 2 SLOPPY SECONDS. I loved the first Feast as a really kick ass monster film, this one tried to top that. I give them an A for effort, BUT a C- in exicution.

The story picks up right after the end of the first one. The lesbo biker chick from the first movie"s sister shows up and finds her dead. she then takes the bartender, also from the first film, and heads to the nearest town to look for the guy that got her sister killed. Before they arrived, the creatures from the first film have side fucked the town fairly well, and we're introduced to the crop of charecters that make up this movie. Among them, 2 midget wrestlers, a sassy black car dealer, his cheating wife and partner as they run from the bastards.

The movie tries to up the shock factor, and ONE gag involving a baby steals the show, but the rest was MEH. the movie builds only to end aburptly, but knowing that theres a 3rd one coming, they leave it open ended. Which is my biggest problem with the film>

I would still recommend it, BUT, dont set high expectations.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 1:23 pm

Last night, when I should have been sleeping in preparation for the day's doings, I was instead watching the Verdict by Sid Lumet, starring Paul Neuman. Not only is it the most realistic courtroom drama I've ever seen (with the exception, perhaps, of the last five minutes) but it's also the most honest portrayal of alcoholism I've ever seen in a film. F'ing fantastic movie!

It set off on the same kind of trainwreck as There Will Be Blood, without any of the epic scale (emotionally, as well as visually) that made that movie so great. If there had been no hope for Frank Galvin, would there have been a reason to make the movie? Interesting question, and I have voices inside me pulling me in both directions.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 1:25 pm

I know it hurts my dork credentials to say it, but I have the original Dawn of the Dead sitting on my netflix shelf, waiting for my very first viewing.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 1:25 pm

...along with Barry Lyndon.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby minstrel on Fri Oct 31, 2008 1:51 pm

Archive wrote:Last night, when I should have been sleeping in preparation for the day's doings, I was instead watching the Verdict by Sid Lumet, starring Paul Neuman. Not only is it the most realistic courtroom drama I've ever seen (with the exception, perhaps, of the last five minutes) but it's also the most honest portrayal of alcoholism I've ever seen in a film. F'ing fantastic movie!

It set off on the same kind of trainwreck as There Will Be Blood, without any of the epic scale (emotionally, as well as visually) that made that movie so great. If there had been no hope for Frank Galvin, would there have been a reason to make the movie? Interesting question, and I have voices inside me pulling me in both directions.


The Verdict is a classic. Maybe Paul Newman's best performance. It looked like he went down deeper here than in the other roles I've seen him in. But the movie was helped by some wonderful supporting performances, too, including Jack Warden as Newman's boss and, of course, James Mason as the opposing lawyer. Milo O'Shea was also great as the judge. I haven't watched it in a while, but your post here has put it at the top of my list - I might just dig out the DVD this evening after the kids stop coming to the door and give it another viewing.

I'd have to turn it off during the last scene, though, because I just HATE the sound of a telephone ringing ...
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 2:22 pm

So true! But man, that sound sets just the perfect tone for the ending! Is that coffee he's drinking, or is it the sauce? From the look on his face, it could be either!

The ending is one big studly maddening annoying question - for which there can be no simple, perfect answer. Come to think of it, that's what saves the serendipitious outcome of the case itself.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 2:25 pm

I agree about Paul Neuman as well - it might be my favorite performance of his. Of course, the script helps. The fact that he was given so many scenes without dialogue, but was given something to do as an actor, is an example of fantastic writing. I love and hate that pinball machine.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby minstrel on Fri Oct 31, 2008 2:38 pm

Don't get me wrong - I think the last scene is terrific. I just hate that sound. But it ends the movie perfectly, and as you say, it leaves open questions. And it could be interpreted in many ways. I don't like to think it means he's just ignoring that woman, ignoring the phone ... I think in that moment he's mentally not even in the room. He's readjusting his role in the world at that point - he's going through the process of learning to see himself not as a broken-down drunken failure, but as a winner. He's barely aware of the phone, and may be barely aware of what he's drinking.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 2:46 pm

Hmm... Definitely, I saw him make a Herculean effort to ignore the phone, and the sound mix seems to make it especially hard to ignore.

Still, what is there to say to that woman that she doesn't already know? She knows she betrayed him, she knows it hurt him, and he made his point when he walloped her in the bar. She introduced herself to him as an elevating force - in some ways, she offered to pull him up to her level - and it turns out she was in the same place he was, self despising and self-defeating.

Now, he's making that transition up without her - but it doesn't make the break with her clean or easy. He's GOT to ignore that phone, the way I read it.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby DerLanghaarige on Fri Oct 31, 2008 3:42 pm

Scooby Doo On Zombie Island
I don't know, I'm a huge Scooby Doo fan and I can even enjoy the less good Scooby-efforts, like "The 13 Ghosts Of Scooby Doo", the TV-movies that were made in the 80's (Like "The Reluctant Werewolf") or "Shaggy & Scooby Doo get A Clue" (Although this is IMO the worst Scooby resurrection so far.) I don't even have much problems with Scrappy Doo! But "Zombie Island" has some stuff, that just bothers me to hell!
I don't wanna say that it was really bad. It wasn't. I enjoyed it and it had some stuff in it, that just made me rollin' on the floor from laughing (Like the levitating Velma who tries to keep her skirt down [unfortunately successful] or Scooby's ongoing fight with the cats). But especially in the final act it just didn't feel like Scooby Doo!
My main problem wasn't the japanified animationstyle (Don't worry, the animation is pretty fluid and there are no chibis anywhere.) it was the unexpected darkness. The villains were REAL supernatural creatures who die a kinda graphic death (Think what happens to Rasputin in the end of Don Bluth's Anastasia), the ganghad their faces melting in some point (which was played out as a joke, but still was unexpected "hard" to watch), a flashback that shows a group of people who are about to get eaten by crocodiles (They cut away right before it happens) and we see REAL zombies, who are the spirits of the people who got murdered(!) by the villains - and of them even seem to be a pregnant woman(!!!).
I dunno. I'm all about for trying something new with Scooby Doo. Over the last 40 years or so, they tried so many different things and somehow the concept and the characters still work. (Scooby Doo is for cartoons what Tetris is for Video Games) But there are some rules that shouldn't be broken and when I watch Scooby Doo and it is able to give me goosebumps, you know that something is wrong!
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby minstrel on Fri Oct 31, 2008 3:48 pm

Archive wrote:Hmm... Definitely, I saw him make a Herculean effort to ignore the phone, and the sound mix seems to make it especially hard to ignore.

Still, what is there to say to that woman that she doesn't already know? She knows she betrayed him, she knows it hurt him, and he made his point when he walloped her in the bar. She introduced herself to him as an elevating force - in some ways, she offered to pull him up to her level - and it turns out she was in the same place he was, self despising and self-defeating.

Now, he's making that transition up without her - but it doesn't make the break with her clean or easy. He's GOT to ignore that phone, the way I read it.


That's exactly the way I saw it the first time I saw the movie. I have, however, a tendency to reinterpret things the second or third time I see a film, and generally I reinterpret in a more optimistic, hopeful, even spiritual way. Dunno why - character flaw, probably. If a storyteller makes the meaning of something plain, then I have an almost perverse desire to see it another way. I also have a tendency to deliberately mispronounce words to emphasize how arbitrarily they're spelled. People keep going "What?" and I'm always having to repeat myself in normal English. And then they get annoyed and usually I don't care. :wink:
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 6:55 pm

That's very funny - I do the same thing sometimes. My whole mancrush on Stephen Sommers is purely based on an almost assuredly manufactured critique on Hollywood filmmaking that I've followed through his whole filmography.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby caruso_stalker217 on Fri Oct 31, 2008 7:03 pm

I was just thinking about THE VERDICT at work today. Newman got robbed.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 7:24 pm

Who won that year?
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby caruso_stalker217 on Fri Oct 31, 2008 7:34 pm

Ben Kingsley. For GHANDI.

Though, to be honest, I haven't actually seen GHANDI. I guess it's better than losing to E.T. or something. But I don't think he was nominated that year.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Fri Oct 31, 2008 8:00 pm

That's a tough call. Can't fault them for giving it to Kinsley - not one bit.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby caruso_stalker217 on Mon Nov 03, 2008 2:04 am

I finally watched CITIZEN KANE for the first time ever. All I can say is this is one hell of a film. It's one of those instant favorites. It's hard to believe Orson Welles was only a couple years older than me when he made this.

My only complaint would be that I, along with 95% of the world, already knew that Rosebud was the sled.

My apologies to the 5% of you ignorant fuckers out there who didn't know.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Ribbons on Mon Nov 03, 2008 2:22 am

That's okay, you just saved us two long, boobless hours
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Lady Sheridan on Mon Nov 03, 2008 6:08 am

RogueScribner wrote:
Once Upon a Time in the West

I have to face it: though I love Segio Leone's [i]Once Upon a Time in America[/b], I just can't seem to get into his other films. After hearing how great his trilogy of of Westerns were and also OUATITW, I think I just don't get it. Sure, these films have a certain visual flair, and Ennio's Morricone's music is pretty awesome, but dramatically I just don't find myself caring all that much. Maybe it's the genre: I've never been partial to Westerns. I didn't really think any of the films were horrible, but I didn't think they were worthy of much praise either. I gave 'em a shot. I'll just stick with OUATIA in the future.


It's funny, I've been on a total Leone/western kick lately, and just loving all of them. It's taken me so long to get into Westerns -- when you live in Colorado and have the myth jammed down your throat 24/7, you want to see anything BUT cowboys and mining towns. But I've slowly gotten into them, and now I just kick myself for being such a jackass about the genre for so long.

Plus, Clint Eastwood remains the hottest man to ever wear a poncho and gunbelt. I could watch him sneer and smoke for hours.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby RogueScribner on Mon Nov 03, 2008 6:14 am

Yeah, I just don't think I like Westerns. I can't really think of any I can point to and say, "Wow! What a great movie!" I mean, I can appreciate stuff like Unforgiven, 3:10 to Yuma, and High Noon, but by and large the genre leaves me cold.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Spandau Belly on Mon Nov 03, 2008 9:56 am

I was over visiting my sister for a "scary" movie double bill.

THE RUINS

This movie is pretty typical of modern horror movies such as Turistas and Hostel in its portrayal of young Americans as stupid and trying to make them scared to leave American suburbs. This movie tricked me into enjoying it somewhat because the first 20 minutes are the worst and so the rest of the movie seems pretty tolerable after all that bullshit of watching some drunk college kids fuck around on the beach and act like idiots.

I'll say this film's main strength was how slowly it unveiled the nature and capabilities of the threat. I didn't know this movie was about cannibal plants, and slowly finding that out definately kept it somewhat interesting. The cast of characters is made up of the close group of two American couples and two other European dudes they meet at the resort and they all go hiking in Mexican jungle. I didn't like that they killed the two European dudes so fast leaving only the Yank friends. I think it would've been a more interesting group dynamic to have one outsider or different alligences coming into play. I liked that they made the pretty blonde chick with the nice boobs the nice sensible one and the bookish homely brunette chick the trampy bitchy one, that was pretty clever. And the dude who was a med-student who looked exactly like Tobey Macguire had that whole I'm-a-doctor arrogance down, which leads him to make one of the film's most comically bad decisions in which he amputates a dude's legs with a box-cutter.

Anyway, I haven't seen the otherkiller plant movie, The Happening, but I wouldn't really recommend this one either. But if you get stuck watching it like I did, you'll find it's not so bad.

HELLRAISER

This was a really good horror movie that had that whole Dario Argento feel of everything being pretty surreal and dream-like with people always acting really unnatural and stilted as well as people really easily accepting totally fucked-up situations. I was surprised to find the version I saw was uncut because it felt like the movie could've done with a bit more fleshing out of the magic box's mythology and some of the characters, but overall I liked the film. With the whole magic box of ultimate pleasure and pain it tapped in to that whole thrill-seeker mentality, and I really liked that. The way they treated the box like the ultimate drug made so daunting yet intriguing.

There's also great special effects of various monsters and skinless people etc.

I know there's a sequel, so maybe it fleshes out the mythology a bit more and takes the story somewhere bigger. So I'll check that out eventually.

FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE

I got back home and felt like watching something that wasn't horror so I went with this off my shelf. This is a really great James Bond film. It's very different from its predecessor, Dr. No, it's a much smaller story and the badguys plan is mostly revenge against Bond for what he did in Dr. No. No big fortress gets destroyed and Bond never gets a confrontation with any big bad guy, everybody he meets in this movie is depicted as a henchman and in no way a mastermind. Bond doesn't get anywhere near Blofeld. So it's a very different kind of Bond film.

I like that Bond doesn't even show up until 20 minutes into the film. They just take the first 20 minutes to keep stacking up what Bond will be facing this film and I love it. The action is also more gritty and there's a bit more suspense to some of the scenes as well.

Anyway, this is a good fucking movie, but I knew that and so did you.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Chilli on Mon Nov 03, 2008 8:17 pm

Stumbled across One Eight Seven on Channel 5 here in the UK

I love this flick. It's got a tremendous performance from Samuel L. Jackson as a teacher struggling to hold onto his sanity after a savage attack, and a really tense and disturbing representation of American High Schools. Brutal, well-written and Jackson really sparks off of Kelly Rowen everytime they meet onscreen. Really underrated.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Bloo on Tue Nov 04, 2008 2:03 am

ROAD TO PERDITION
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I saw this when it first came out but decided, after Newman's passing away, that I wanted to watch it again. I had forgotten how good this movie really is, I mean I knew it was good but I'm just taken back how good it is.

I'm not going to go much into the story but I will saw that Paul Newman plays a badass mob underboss (under Capone--Anthony Paglia in an cut scene found on the DVD) and Tom Hanks and Daniel Craig as his adopted son and birth son respectiavly.

Everything is going good until Tom Hanks kid sees them kill someone, then everything goes to hell. Lots of people get killed, banks get robbed. Jude Law and Daniel Craig try to kill Hanks, Hanks goes after them.

The acting is great across the board, I had forgotten it was Craig in this role as Newman's kinda weak son and he's really good, but the movie really belongs to Newman, who beats on Craig in one scene that's oddly disturbing and moving at the same time, and to Hanks.

The kid playing Hanks kid isn't annoying, but isn't some outstanding kid actor. The rest of the supporting cast is good too. Tucci, as always, is good. Dylan Baker was good too, but I wasn't sure if he was supposed to come across as a homosexual or not. Jennifer Jason Leigh was good in her small role.

Conrad Hall did a marvalous job with how he shot this. Mendes did a nice job with the direction.

This may be my 2nd favorite MODERN gangster film
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Bloo on Tue Nov 04, 2008 2:17 am

THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL
A Bloo Review http://viewtoreview.blogspot.com

This is a classic, Robert Wise directed film about the dangers of atomic weapons, war, and violence.

We start off with various reports (from the commentary track, real announcers) from around the world talking about a spaceship approaching earth. They assure the world that this is very real, not a hoax, to be patient and see what happens. I loved that they used real broadcasters as it gave it a nice air of authenticity.

So this spacecraft lands in DC and the military and tourists surround it. The door opens and a man steps out and tries to assure those there that he is peaceful but ends up getting shot. He is taken to the hospital, treated and using stuff from his own home planet, recovers. He tells the government that he needs to meet with ALL the leaders of the world, by calling a special session of the UN, but no one will agree to the location. They try and trap him, but he gets out and assumes the name "Mr. Carpenter" and takes in at a boarding house in DC. There he befriends a young boy and his mother and gets in touch with a professor. The professor arranges a meeting with various leaders but the government finds Klatuu (aka Mr. Carpenter) through the mom's asshole boyfriend. The alien gets shot, is brought back to life thanks to his giant tank killing robot, Gort. He warns the people that they need to settle themselves or they will be punished.

Great freaking movie and still timely in our times.

The acting was great especially from British actor Micheal Rennie. He brings a real subtle humanity to the role, but also a great alien quality. His scene in Arlington Cemetery is fantastic.

This is a timeless movie that must be seen.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Bloo on Wed Nov 05, 2008 1:43 am

SCARLET DIVA
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I should have have seen the warning flag when director Asia Argento appeared before the film started and said that "you may have heard bad things about this film, but don't believe it, this movie is about redemption"

wow, this movie wasn't bad because of the sexuality or the drug use or the utter despicable lead character. No this movie was bad because it was an incoherent mess. She cut many scenes too short or held on too long on others. The photography was beautiful though.

The story, supposedly semi-autobiographical, I couldn't get into. I didn't care for the lead character, she gave me no reason to sympathize with her, nor did she draw me into her story. To me she was a spoiled rotten little kid who was given lots of chances and lucked out on many things yet continued to spiral into destruction. I also couldn't tell you how many times she was raped or almost raped. After awhile it was almost desensitizing. Really what it seemed like were incomplete snapshots of this persons life without any real connecting thread or a plot. This past weekend I saw a short horror film from some High School students that did the same thing, it was nothing really but scenes without a connecting thread of a plot.

With the acting most of it was over the top, but I did enjoy Schooly D's extended cameo/small role as the "Hash Man". The actor playing the sleazeball Hollywood producer looked like a rejected UFC fighter turned porn star.

I see what Asia was trying to do, but ultimately couldn't do. Either that or I'm so uneducated in Italian cinema that I just didn't "get" it.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Spandau Belly on Wed Nov 05, 2008 9:29 am

I got around to seeing the original Inglorious Bastards, and I can definately see what Quinty sees in this and how it could inspire a movie from him. From what I hear Quinty's got a really different take on it, and the films will pretty much only have their titles and settings in common.

This original movie was pretty entertaining. Bo Svenson and Fred Williamson have good charism@ and Williamson especially carries the movie. There's a mobster guy who comes across more as a perv than a tough bloke; and a funny hippie guy who's got all sorts of improbable items stuffed in his sleaves. Then there's a bunch of other forgettable guys and the movie doesn't do the best job keeping track of them. Sometimes you get one of those moments like in Alien 3 when they're all weaping "Kevin's dead!" and I'm all like "Who was Kevin? All the characters I was keeping of track of are still alive."

IB is also really poorly shot. You can really sense a rushed production because the shots are not well framed and characters frequently get half their faces cut off at the edge of the screen and some of the action scenes are just montages of gunfire and explosions like the more chaotic moments of a Rambo movie.

In structure, it's more like The Good The Bad and The Ugly in that the story is mostly a bunch of misadventures until the group all get saddled with a big mission for the final act of the film. Until then, it's a bunch of horsing around and the characters don't really develope as much as they do just have brief confrontations with each other that don't really go anywhere.

Overall, it's okay in a guns-and-bombs Rambo kind of way, but it just didn't have anything that made me really love it or want to see it again. I look forward ot Quinty's take on all this.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Sat Nov 08, 2008 2:41 am

They told me to watch The Last Dragon.

And I did.

And they were right. Lord help me, they were right.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby BuckyO'harre on Sat Nov 08, 2008 2:43 am

Sho'nuff!
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Archive on Sat Nov 08, 2008 3:06 am

He's my brother. And he IS the MASTER!
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Spandau Belly on Sun Nov 09, 2008 8:27 pm

I finally saw

THE LAST EMPEROR

I don't know that much about Chinese history, so I found this movie to be pretty enjoyable, I don't know if it's accurate but it was a pretty fascinating biopic that was really well handled through a fractured timeline and many flashbacks. We see the life of China's last emporer who became officially powerless as a small child but remained Emporer for purely symbollic purposes for awhile afterwards. Like Bruce Wayne in Batman Begins, he goes from a life of luxury in a giant estate to general population in an Asian prison, only he speaks Chinese, so he's got the leg up on Bruce Wayne. But instead of returning to his hometown as a masked vigilante he ultimately ends up a poor gardener.

The film's cinematography is handled by the occupation's patron saint, Vittorio Starraro, who makes every scene in this movie beautifully vibrant. He even makes a shot of a dude sniffing the Emporer's poo look all textured and artsy. Maybe you guys watching this on Blu-Ray could even smell the royal poo yourselves, I don't know just how much that technology is capable of.

Josie Packard also shows up in a main support role, which really threw me off, even though her name is there in the openning credits. There's a bit of lesbian eroticon stuff with her and the Emporer's other wife, but nothing on a Mullholland Drive standard. And the dude who played Shang Tsung in the Mortal Kombat movie is in there, not to mention Eg Shen from Big Trouble in Little China, although this film is nothing like either of those.

For the most part this movie is perfectly handled. The only stuff that pissed me off was the same stuff that always bugs me and others not so much. There's a really pointless narration moment when Peter O'Toole's character first shows up, but then he never narrates anything again. So that just felt really out of place. Then there's some times where a guy will say "Oh yes, that happened in Tsetsin in 1934. I remember it so well." and then we'll cut to a scene that is clearly a flashback to that moment with all the characters in 1930s clothes and they'll still stick it on the screen in big white letters that this is TSETSTIN 1934.

But overall, this is a really good historical drama / biopic. These Criterion guys continue to show they know a thing or two about what movies are good.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby caruso_stalker217 on Mon Nov 10, 2008 7:23 am

So I happened to catch DEATH SENTENCE on Home Box Office tonight. I would like to share my feelings if I could.

I didn't care for the look of the picture. That grainy washed out SAVING PRIVATE RYAN shit (which by the way I also caught a bit of on TNT, with every second of violence intact but with some (?!?) of the curse words censored) might have been fresh ten years ago but now it's getting ridiculous. Aside from how it looks I thought it was shot pretty well. Especially the foot chase through the alleys and the parking garage. Things got a little show-offy at the end with some unnecessary CGI camera trickery, but overall it looked alright. I also liked the lack of music in the chase scenes.

What I didn't like was every time Kevin Bacon or Travolta's wife or the kid started crying or something sad happens all of a sudden the movie would turn into the end of an episode of "House" with a fucking montage set to shitty Sarah McLauchlan-esque songs. ATTENTION YOU FUCKING HACK DIRECTORS. You're supposed to let the PERFORMANCES get across the THOUGHTS FEELINGS and EMOTIONS of the characters. Don't take some piece of shit song you got off your fucking iPod and cut it in over a scene of Kevin Bacon crying in the shower. Just let the motherfucker cry! Damn, man. They should fucking cover that in Directing 101. At least there are a few scenes with the gang members where they play Jimi Hendrix and shit. Doesn't make up for those three or four fucking scenes with those shitty songs, though.

The villains weren't particularly well-written, which is usually the case. You get the idea that this Bobby Darling guy or whoever is a bad dude, but he doesn't seem bad enough. They never fucking do. Like they've got the black guy in their gang and he's got these ridiculous sideburns and I just didn't buy him as a gang member. The only bad guy in the movie who really works is John Goodman. He seems like a real crazy fucker in this.

The real blotch on this movie, though, is Aisha Tyler. ONE OF THE WORST FUCKING MOVIE COPS EVER. Jesus, I don't think she did one goddamn bit of police work in this whole film. She just stands back and let's this war happen. Like fucking James Buchanan or something. There's the scene where Bacon escapes from the hospital. She leaves him alone in his son's room and you see her standing in the hallway laughing about something and she looks into the room and she's like, "Aw shit!" and she runs in and the window is wide open and it's like "... oh how could I have foreseen THIS?" Terrible character. Terrible fucking actress. This is probably the only time I would've preferred to have seen somebody like Rosario Dawson play the cop.

Aside from the usual shit that comes with these kinds of movies like characters who aren't fully developed and whatnot, I thought it was a decent film. I'll even say I was a little surprised when the gang caps Bacon's wife and kid. Usually that kinda shit happens at the beginning. It's not too often you see a guy start a vendetta with some of his family still alive and then the dudes what are getting vendetta'd upon come back and blow away the guy's family. But then I gotta deduct a few points for the gang being morons and not shooting Bacon in the face which is what I would've fuckin' done.

It's nice to see the gloves come off and whatnot and Bacon shaves his head and goes full on fucking crazy. Not as crazy as I would've liked, but plenty crazy. I'll give Bacon props. He turns in a solid performance. Though I spent a lot of this movie wondering what it would've been like if Jim Carrey played the lead. I think that would've been pretty cool, actually.

I'm not sure how I feel about the scene at the end where Bacon and that Darling guy are sitting next to each other after shooting each other up and they have some sort of special bonding moment and Darling accepts his fate or whatever the fuck was going on there. I guess it's a nice idea and all, but I would've preferred it if Bacon had just shot him a lot of times.

So, overall, it was a decent enough revenge picture that could've been a lot better. Like FOUR BROTHERS it brings together the right elements but fails to make a cohesive badass whole. That's the problem with these directors these days trying to make these kind of gritty movies that recall films of the '70s and '80s. Instead of making the world gritty they just throw filters on the lense and tweak the color in post. And they add some pointless CGI camera tricks that only call attention to themselves. If you want to make a gritty action revenge pictures like in the '70s and '80s, guys who direct these movies, I suggest keeping it simple. Pretend that CGI doesn't exist and then don't use it. Don't shoot your movie like it's THREE KINGS. I want to see a fucking movie again that looks like it takes place in the real fucking world, not some crazy fucking cartoon world where everybody is green and lives underground with the florescent lights.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby instant_karma on Mon Nov 10, 2008 8:58 am

caruso_stalker217 wrote: I want to see a fucking movie again that looks like it takes place in the real fucking world, not some crazy fucking cartoon world where everybody is green


Whatever you do, don't look at your signature...
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby caruso_stalker217 on Mon Nov 10, 2008 9:01 am

I AM THE GREEN MAN!
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Spifftacular SquirrelGirl on Fri Nov 14, 2008 7:02 am

"Spaced"

I watched the entire run of episodes about a week ago. Just last night I watched the documentary of the making of "Spaced" and started watching the series all over again with the commentary tracks (with special guests like Kevin Smith, Diablo Cody, and Patton Oswalt). Safe to say, I LURVE this series and I kind of feel bad about just now catching on.

I suppose I should mention I got a copy of "Clone Wars" through netflix and could only get through half of the movie before getting bored with it. I heard the series is an improvement but I'll probably wait until it's on dvd before checking that out.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby DaleTremont on Fri Nov 14, 2008 3:00 pm

Spifftacular SquirrelGirl wrote:"Spaced"

I watched the entire run of episodes about a week ago. Just last night I watched the documentary of the making of "Spaced" and started watching the series all over again with the commentary tracks (with special guests like Kevin Smith, Diablo Cody, and Patton Oswalt). Safe to say, I LURVE this series and I kind of feel bad about just now catching on.


I've been dying to see Spaced too! Glad you liked it :D

Soo I've started a tradition (if something that's only be done 3 times can be called a tradition...) of having a Thursday Movie Night. Me and my friends choose a theme and watch 2 or 3 movies to fit that theme. The very first one we did was kind of on the fly so we weren't very creative and came up with the idea of "cooking films." I wanted to watch Delicatessen (not really about cooking so much as eating, but close enough) and then since I was about to subject my friend to a post-apocalyptic French movie about cannibals, I let her pick some mid 90s comedy directed by Stanley Tucci called "Big Night." A very interesting, and not altogether successful, first movie night. I really dug Delicatessen and think Jean Pierre Jeunet should do more cannibal movies because he's really good at them. Big Night wasn't actually bad...it was just weird sometimes because Stanley Tucci and Tony Shalhoub had these Italian accents that made them sound like a Mario and a Luigi. But it also had Ian Holm playing this insane hyperactive flamboyant Italian restauranteur and the food in Big Night did look a lot more appetizing than that little dude from Amelie and City of Lost Children.

Next theme we did (inspired by Scream Queens) was "Deadly Competition" so we decided to go with Drop Dead Gorgeous and Battle Royale 2. Drop Dead Gorgeous is one of my favorite comedies...I think it still holds up after the 12th time viewing. I also realized it's one of the few comedies where women haven't been sidelined. There are plenty of guys in it too obviously, but most of the funny comes from the ladies. Totally amazing ensemble when you think of it- Brittany Murphy, Kirsten Dunst, Amy Adams, Denise Richards, Ellen Barkin, Allison Janney, Kirstie Alley, that lady from Austin Powers- and every one of them is hilarious. Battle Royale 2 was a disappointment to be honest. I loved the scene when the teacher is calling out their names in the bunker, letting each of them decide whether or not they want to go to war, but then I thought it went downhill. First off, having all the kids go after a common enemy is not nearly as interesting as having them off each other. Secondly, I thought the relative minimalism of the first Battle Royale was what made them execute every scene with such care and precision. Here though, with an obviously bigger budget, it seems like they fall back on that Saving Private Ryan shit...lots of explosions and what not. And lastly (this being the biggest problem with movie night in general) by the time we get to the second movie we're always pretty drunk so our attention span goes to shit and we didn't even finish BR2. So I guess I can't really critique it in all fairness. I'm gonna see if it holds my interest more sober.

Last night we had a Nicholas Cage action night and watched The Rock and Face-Off. I had the same problem though except I was drunk during BOTH movies so all I got was bits and pieces here and there: Ed Harris scowling and talking about Iraq, people getting Planet Terror-esque exploding boils, Sean Connery rolling around in a mine shaft cart, Nicholas Cage doing that eye twitch thing. I couldn't tell you what the hell it was about but all those individual things were pretty damn entertaining. We also played a drinking game where every time Bay pushes in on someone for dramatic effect we had to knock one back. So by the time we got to Face Off I didn't even know what the hell was going on, but still I'm pretty sure I liked Face-Off a lot better and am definitely going to watch it again sober.

Anyway, we also chose some more themes last night so in the future we'll be having an Elephants night, a Natalie Portman is Jailbait night, an 80s Comedy Sequels Made in the 90s night, and hopefully many more. If anyone has any good ideas for themes let me know so I can take the credit and impress my friends with my brilliant ideas!
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Chris a.k.a StuntMike on Fri Nov 14, 2008 3:03 pm

Delicatessen is such a good flick.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Spandau Belly on Fri Nov 14, 2008 3:24 pm

Jean-Pierre Jeunet is a master visualist. I have to say, I was really disappointed by The Long Sunday of Many Engagements (or however it was translated into English). I got that it was clever to remake the cutsiepoo movie "Amelie" only as a downer and with the same lead actress, but the resulting movie was just really uneven.

But the guy is still aces in my book.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby DerLanghaarige on Fri Nov 14, 2008 5:33 pm

I watched Tinkerbell. Got a problem with that?
It was cute fluff for kids with a handful of nice jokes. (That crying squirrel made me almost pee myself!)Unfortunately the re-watch value for male adults over the age of 12 is pretty low, but at least it isn't nearly as annoying as a movie about a fairy who tries to find its place in the world could be. And if the score gets released on CD, I would consider buying it. I just hope that they will make a sequel where we find out how that nice little fairy who wants to be the friend of everybody turns into the bitch that tries to kill a young girl, that we all know from Peter Pan.
Instead of a rating, I give this "The seal of you won't love or hate it".
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby caruso_stalker217 on Fri Nov 14, 2008 5:42 pm

Chris a.k.a StuntMike wrote:Delicatessen is such a good flick.


One of the best looking films I've ever seen.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby BuckyO'harre on Fri Nov 14, 2008 5:46 pm

DerLanghaarige wrote:I watched Tinkerbell. Got a problem with that?
It was cute fluff for kids with a handful of nice jokes. (That crying squirrel made me almost pee myself!)Unfortunately the re-watch value for male adults over the age of 12 is pretty low, but at least it isn't nearly as annoying as a movie about a fairy who tries to find its place in the world could be. And if the score gets released on CD, I would consider buying it. I just hope that they will make a sequel where we find out how that nice little fairy who wants to be the friend of everybody turns into the bitch that tries to kill a young girl, that we all know from Peter Pan.
Instead of a rating, I give this "The seal of you won't love or hate it".




Good to know.
Now I don't have to worry about Bob and Vicar hanging themselves after they're forced to watch it with their daughters.
Thank you, Zoners, for the kindness, tolerance, and enlightenment you've shared with me. It may not have been deserved, but it was greatly appreciated nonetheless. Soupy twist.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby Spifftacular SquirrelGirl on Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:00 pm

I own a copy of "Drop Dead Gorgeous" and I think it's severely underrated as far as comedies go. I think part of the charm for me is the fact that it's awfully close to where I live and some of the portrayals aren't too far off.

I think we might watch "Sukiyaki Western Django" tonight and I'm still going to get around to finishing "The Clone Wars" sometime this weekend.
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Re: What have you been watching? (DVD or Films on TV)

Postby minstrel on Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:16 pm

I just received that Gregory Peck box set from Amazon, so I had to watch Mirage (interesting paranoid mystery thing - Peck actually hires a private detective played wonderfully by Walter Matthau to figure out who he, Peck, is!), and then, of course, To Kill A Mockingbird (which had me crying at the end, as usual).
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