Serious Movie Discussion | Page 34

Discussion in 'Mayberry Lounge' started by Bullitt68, Sep 24, 2016.

  1. Ricky13 You are who you choose to be.

    Ricky13
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    Like him a lot. Even his last few. Not for everyone though.

    Knowing your tastes/ideas, I'd go with The Thin Red Line. Then Tree of Life. Then The New World.

    You'll struggle with Days of Heaven and Badlands, methinks.

    Enjoy. He's polarising, as you say, but if he clicks with you, you could possibly find a film of his to be an all-time favourite. Like The Thin Red Line is for me. And I used to hate his ass before I saw that film.
     
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  2. KOQ24 Silver Belt

    KOQ24
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    [​IMG]

    I watched The Void recently.
    A great return of practical Effects and throwback to 80s Horror.
    It wears it's heritage pretty much on its sleeve with clear influences from The Thing,Prince of Darkness,The Exorcist or Hellraiser.
    It's Lovecraftian to the core.
    I'd recommend it to any Fan of the aforementioned movies.

    On the negative side: I found the characters lacking and the editing sort of hiding some practical effects (prob due to Budget reasons.


    And i think i counted just 1 jump scare in the whole movie, which is refreshing nowadays.
     
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  3. KOQ24 Silver Belt

    KOQ24
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    I find theres a clear difference between Badlands/Days of Heaven pretty much straight up Dramas) , The Thin Red Line/The New World and Tree of life/To the Wonder (didn't see the rest).

    The one i outright didnt like is To the Wonder, which is a mess.
    Days of Heaven can be a chore at times, but its a georgeous looking Film.

    I'd probably rank em

    The Thin Red Line
    Tree of Life
    Badlands
    The New World

    .
    Days of Heaven
    .
    .
    .
    To the Wonder
     
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  4. europe1 It´s a nice peninsula to Asia

    europe1
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    I found much enjoyment in The Void too. They really nailed that eery feeling of encountering something otherwordly. As you said, it's great to see 80's-esque practical effects again. I also got a lot of Silent Hill vibes from the picture.

    I thought they tripped and stumbled a bit on the storytelling front though.

    Like, the fact that the Doctor ended up being the big bad. He didn't even feel like a character before the face-heel turn. So when the reveal came I was like, "wait, are we even meant to be remebering that guy?". And a lot of the follow-up, like the pregnant girl bearing his child, also felt really shoe-horned in.

    The ending, when the cop and the doctor awakened in that dark dimension, felt very much like a riff on the ending of The Beyond. Though Beyond did it much better, foreshadowing it and making it feel substantuated.

    But overall, a good film, with a really fun Lovecraftian vibe.
     
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  5. Caveat Mozart in a Go-Kart

    Caveat
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    Thanks guys. I went Tree of Life because I wasn't really feeling the war thing enough for Thin Red Line atm.

    Found it a bit of a slog compared to Song to Song. I think it's probably the better movie - the characters contribute more evenly, it's more majestic and ambitious and has some crazy gorgeous shots - but it just felt too big for me, and the extended small-town religious themes had me rolling my eyes at a few points. It's possible I just got tired of Malick's style after coming off Song but I spent too much time hoping for Tree to just frickin' end already and stop beating me over the head with eternity.

    The overlaid dialogue is a really cool technique but it risks coming off as pseudo-profundity if the characters aren't sufficiently complex. I think the characters in the Tree of Life were more accessible than the ones in Song to Song, but that also meant the poetic dialogue that's supposed to present us with their authenticity and vulnerability was less captivating. I couldn't wait to get inside the heads of the characters in Song to Song, whereas in Tree I was sympathetic but not really intrigued.

    Malick's directorial style has this really nice personal touch to it, like you're following his characters through very natural life events as if you're literally walking behind them or sitting next to them, and in Tree of Life the contrast between that perspective and the vast, universal one is apparent, but I prefer what it reflects when it's enmeshed in a more complex social milieu. Song to Song has this tension in every shot that comes from nothing more than the sheer intention of the different characters, from the pervasive threat that is the wild Fassbender to the forlorn sadness in Mara, and then both together with a Gosling that's sort of caught in the middle. That was a lot more fun for me to watch and appreciate than a two-and-a-half hour long prayer.

    I'd like to see him to do a more pure, traditional love story. To the Wonder sounds appealing in that sense, at least in writing.
     
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  6. RBO 75 A step below the top

    RBO 75
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    Just started watching The Belko Experiment
     
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  7. Ricky13 You are who you choose to be.

    Ricky13
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    His central idea, as you no doubt have gathered - a oneness in all things, living, non-living or dead - is not particularly novel (what idea is though, right?) but I've always loved the execution. I've found that at his best (for me, The Thin Red Line) he uses his technique to achieve the sensory ends you noted: what it feels like to have water gushing out of a pipe onto your face, or lying down in the forest with a view of tall trees above you, your father's beard on your skin, the back of your mother's head. I'm not sure anyone captures that quite as well. There's people who try (Shane Carruth comes to mind, also awesome - you like? See Upstream Color), but they're far more character driven, and I kind of like that Malick doesn't feel beholden to that.

    I agree that Tree of Life struggles under the weight of its own weightiness, and also from being a bit of a rehash of what he's had to say before. I've watched a friend nod off to it while I was sitting right next to him. It can seem a bit pointless. But he's one of the few guys I can watch fairly pointlessly. It's not a defence. Just remarking that in a certain mood, he's the only "pointless" guy I can watch. Might have to do with the fact that I like his central idea.

    He needs to chill with the damn lens flares though. May be the one technical pet peeve I have with him.
     
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  8. Joseph Budden GTM Gym, Tan, Make #Elite Bets

    Joseph Budden
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    The Void is the shit. Probably best horror this year so far
     
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  9. Rimbaud82 Brown Belt

    Rimbaud82
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    Don't think I have forgot that you never watched Embrace of the Serpent.

    <mma3>
     
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  10. Caveat Mozart in a Go-Kart

    Caveat
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    Stalker and Solaris playing locally this week.

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. Bullitt68 Senior Moderator

    Bullitt68
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    Going to see 2001 on the big screen in a few hours.

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. Ricky13 You are who you choose to be.

    Ricky13
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    NOICE!

    Both you guys.

    Seen all those on film though so fucking HA!
     
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  13. Bullitt68 Senior Moderator

    Bullitt68
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    https://www.musicboxtheatre.com/events/the-music-box-70mm-film-festival

    The screening I'm going to is part of an annual "70mm Film Festival." My experiences seeing shit on film have sucked, though, so I'm always nervous it's going to be garbage. The only film print that's actually wowed me was a print of Lola Montès. Here's hoping 2001 makes it two impressive film prints.
     
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  14. Ricky13 You are who you choose to be.

    Ricky13
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    That festival looks great. I'd have been all over that kind of thing a year or so ago.

    Enjoy it man. I've seen 2001 a couple times on 70 at the BFI in London (Southbank) and loved the prints. It's a bit of a bitch that the kind of print you see comes down to a crapshoot (the one I saw of Solaris was terrible, for instance), but I tend to think it's part of the experience in the end.

    QT screens some stellar prints at The New Beverly of absolutely amazing films, if/when you visit LA. Don't miss out if you get the chance.
     
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  15. Rimbaud82 Brown Belt

    Rimbaud82
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    Very jealous, I only got to see Nostalghia on the big screen.
     
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  16. Caveat Mozart in a Go-Kart

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    @Ricky13, Baby Driver man, I dunno.

    I wanted to like it so much, and if I could pick individual scenes out of it to keep in a special place, I would, but overall I have to say I was disappointed. Will be interested to hear your reaction.
     
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  17. Kafir-kun Gold Belt

    Kafir-kun
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    You might not live too far from where I do or its just a coincidence that we both have those movies playing locally. I've already seen Stalker, I highly recommend it though I don't think you need my recommendation to convince yourself to watch.
     
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  18. europe1 It´s a nice peninsula to Asia

    europe1
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    I'm going to mega-post now. But I haven't seen either Solaris, Stalker or 2001 since the last one. I don't know what I did to deserve this.

    [​IMG]

    Also, my PC died since the last mega-post. So a lot of my write-ups vanished into the void of cyberspace with it's death So, unfortunately, I'll have to just breeze bye several pictures since I don't remember what I inteded to say about them.


    Wings of Desire wasn't the only artsy-fartsy German picture that I saw this time. I also broke into the Rainer Fassbinder ouvere with World on a Wire from 1974. Amazingly, it has a premise similar to that of the Matrix, with a computer-simulated world where programs embody the characters and all of existence. Again, this was 1974, the Matrix was considered mind-bending for it's time in the early 2000's. How freaking rad must that have been in the 70's?

    I liked it a lot but I also had a lot of gripes with it. The running-time approaches four hours and tedium does set in. Fassbinder's style is also gaudy as fuck. It's one of those films where most things just looks tawdry and ugly on purpose.

    Still, Fassbinder won me over. There is this motif with mirrors running through the film and for a bit I got all "there's too much fartsy in my artsy here Mr Fassbinder!" but then -- in one critical scene -- it all become worth it and I admitted that Rainier had won this round! And despite its plodding length, the ending does make the journey heartfelt.


    Getting all the arthouse fluff out of the way early... Guys, what the fuck was 1979's Quintet all about!? It's a post-apocalyptic story (of the world-freeze variety) by Robert Altman where the last generation of earth waste away their time by playing a game called Quintet, starring Paul Newman.

    Fifteen minutes in I thought I could be watching a hidden classic but... Jesus Christ does this film become drab and devoid of any momentum. It's one of those films where the world-building is striking and the ideas profound and interesting to explore but god damit does the film make it all dull and unwatchable. It's not helped by the fact that the game of Quintet is never explained at all. One of the biggesst screw-ups I've ever seen based on the films potential.

    Also, to simulate the cold world Altman decided to smear the edges of the camera's lens with vaseline. That has to be one of the most baffling director-decisions I can think of.


    On to recent times, I finally watched Manchester by the Sea. While I wouldn't call it splendid I would call it great. I definitively didn't expect so much comedy in it. But I actually really identified -- on a personal-experience level -- with the films exploration of depression. There are many shoots in the film where Casey Afflec just stares at an empty landscape, looking out a window, gazing at the moon, because he just can't deal with the weightiness of interacting with other human beings (like when he's with the solicitor). That feeling of being alone with the landscape, unable to engage with the world or other human beings, really connected with some of my own experiences. Plus in the many little dysfunctional interactions Casey has with his nephew. He feels that he has obligations towards the kid that grounded in some genuine affection, but he's so fundementally emotionally detatched on a human-to-human level that he can't properly deal with the guy. That sort of depiction of what depression does to feelt really acute to me.


    Moving on to more high-spirited yarns, the amazing auditory acting of José Ferrer is becoming a recurring motif in my deranged ramblings, and by Zeus almighty was he amazeballs in Cyrano de Bergerac! Seriously, is there line or verse his majestic voice cannot perfect? Ferrer portrays a (literally) long-nosed poet-musketeer whom has mastered both avenues of his craft to a legendary degree and figuratively gleams with a zest for life. He won the Oscar for it, and damit did the force of his performance earn it.

    Though... to my shame... I must admit that the very first thing I thought of when seeing the lenght of that nose was "oh so this is where Steve Martin got the idea of Roxanne from".:D



    Staying with films released within living-memory, I also saw The Babadook. Essie Davis starring performance sort-of reminded me of Isabelle Adjani's zaniness in 1981's Possession, in that both films featured an actress really diving into the deep end of the insanity poll (although Adjani took a deeper dive, but that's still one mind-boggling statement in-and-of-itself considering how luny Essie is in this film). But yeah, The Babadook was really enjoyable in depicting a woman cracking under maternal pressure.



    Moving on, I watched the two Infernal Affairs sequels. Neither came anywhere near close to the original and both felt like rather jaded cash-ins. The first one is constructed as a prequel, and is definitively the better one. Yeah it's a wonky backstory that is bolted-on to the original story and doesn't really add anything in terms of character that was essential. But at least it's a solid on a stand-alone level, and it looks good visually.
    The third Infernal Affairs films felt straight-out superfluous though. It takes place during, and after, the first film, basically an epic exercise in padding and trying up loose ends (and of course it jumps all over the place narratively). It's one of those movies where stuff happens but there is no story. Like, there is this whole lengthy segment in the middle of the film that is solely about following the main characters when they're with the psychiatrist girl. It's downright ridiculous, with them engaging in hypnosis and shit! A really porous attempt to squeeze the last bucks out of the series. At least the second one had a story.


    Hey remember Titanic? I saw the earlier 1958 filmatization A Night to Remember. It's really good but I think Cameron's version edges it out. A Night is only 90's minutes long and the 1999 film just benifits from having so much more airtime to enliven the story.

    But other than that, it's startling just how much the two films parallels each other. At least in the actual depiction of the Titanic sinking, with events being downright copied (like the musicians playing during the ships descent). Thematically though, while Cameron's version focuses more on the romance and tragedy -- an excercise in well done emotionalism -- the narrative of A Night To Remember is much more about how you handle said catastrophe. It has this idea about how stoicism, professionalism and a sense-of-duty can bring about heroism and nobility even in such dire and hopeless circumstances.


    Damit, Rebecca might not be Hitchcock's best film, but it's certainly up there! The middle part where Joan Fontaine's loses her grip on reality and becomes psychologically unraveled is just marvelous. Like that part where the maid opens up the man-sized window and steps aside, as if planting the thought of suicide in Joan's mind, is just fantasticaly done. Splendid gothic atmosphere as well. So yeah, one of Hitchcock's bests.


    Moving on to films I definitely should have seen earlier, Carlito's Way! Definitely another great gangster film from De Palma, his sumptuous visual sense was out in full-force and some scenes were really iconic. Pacino looked oddly out-of-place in his all-black get-up (though that may be the point) but still delivered at his lofty standards. Sean Penn's complete transformation as the lawyer was damn fun as well.


    I had a ton of shit written down about The Falcon and the Snowman and Nothing is Sacred before the PC fried. Can't rememeber what I inteded to say excactly but both are really good. Nothing is Sacred was a fun one and Falcon and Snowman was a really taut, gripping crime-drama.

    Same deal with the anthology film Flesh and Fantasy, unfortunately. Good film overall with that quintessential eerie feeling when dealing with the quasi-supernatural. One thing I do vividly remember though, is the middle-episode starred Edward G Robinson, and bizarrely enough, parts of it is heavily reminiscent of his Fritz Lang noir films Woman in the Window and Scarlett Street, despite coming out a couple of years earlier, complete with Robinson becoming enchanted by a portrait of a woman in a store-window amidst a great surrealistic part of the episode. Robinson's episode was the best though the other two starring Betty Field as a Mardi Gras shut-in and Charles Boyer as a high-wire circus performer alongside Barbara Stanwyck were really good too. Funnily enough, the framing story is just dropped midway through.
     
    #678
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  19. Caveat Mozart in a Go-Kart

    Caveat
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    You're not in Canada, are you? I've actually seen Stalker already and have kept @europe1 eagerly awaiting a write-up for so long that there's no way I could possibly do justice to the anticipation. But maybe I'll try.

    Solaris will be a first watch this Wednesday.
     
    #679
  20. Kafir-kun Gold Belt

    Kafir-kun
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    Eww no.
    Figures, the type of person who would know of the movie and would go to pay to see it in a limited showing is probably the type of person who already saw it by virtue of having good taste in movies.
     
    #680
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