Author Topic: Write about the last movie you watched (2006-2010)  (Read 3688349 times)

Holly Harry

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19950 on: September 20, 2009, 08:41:43 PM »
Paranoid Park

Decent but inferior to Elephant.

I will be watching Elephant tomorrow, I hope you're right.

she's not.  Paranoid's "non-linearity" is the point, the film is about how we come to peace with ourselves through memory getting reworked.  thus, Chardy's claim that guilt accumulates is also off as the "non-linearity" is really memory repeating the same scene, thus the "accumulation" is really just the same guilt getting reworked to alleviation.  Paranoid is brilliant, Elephant is merely very good

You've clearly watched this more than once.

No disrespect meant here, but I found this comical. Are you actually criticizing his/her critique by saying....he/she has seen it more than once? Like "Oh well, of course you see it that way, you have the ability of hindsight". I thought that would give a critique more validity, not detract! The first argument of it's type I've come across, I got to say, if indeed I'm reading your post correctly. Correct me if I'm out of line. And this is coming from someone who is not really a fan of that film(though I probably need to see it again, I was in no mood at the time, probably).


I was saying that with hindsight (i.e. on your second viewing) this film would be more enjoyable. This is because you know the level of Alex's guilt at the end, and then see where it comes from - from all his memory-flashbacks (which appear out of order). For me, on a first viewing, I found it a bit jarring, disjointed; I felt the non-linearity wasn't the best way to convey his guilt. skjerva's post made it occur to me how much better this film would be on a second viewing because (with knowledge of the end) it reduces the importance of sequential memory flashbacks.

Seeing it another time probably puts it in another perspective, which is why I should watch the film again, since I think Gus Van Sant is a director who has proven he deserves it. Also, I recently saw "To Die For", and loved it. Completely loved it.
"Political questions, if you go back thousands of years, are ephemeral, not important. History is the same thing over and over again."-Woody Allen.

Melvil

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19951 on: September 20, 2009, 09:08:33 PM »
Here's a new perspective.

I just finished Elephant. By all accounts I should have loved this movie, but I am practically seething with anger. Only Van Sant could have turned such powerful subject matter into something so completely ineffective. He has absolutely nothing to say, he just builds his characters out of cliches and then revels in his own masturbatory filmmaking for the duration of the movie. Paranoid Park was an annoyance, but this movie is a disgrace.

°Keith!

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19952 on: September 20, 2009, 09:15:13 PM »
Here's a new perspective.

I just finished Elephant. By all accounts I should have loved this movie, but I am practically seething with anger. Only Van Sant could have turned such powerful subject matter into something so completely ineffective. He has absolutely nothing to say, he just builds his characters out of cliches and then revels in his own masturbatory filmmaking for the duration of the movie. Paranoid Park was an annoyance, but this movie is a disgrace.

but it actually has cinematography!

Melvil

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19953 on: September 20, 2009, 09:16:36 PM »
but it actually has cinematography!

The cinematography in both movies is objectively great. :)

zarodinu

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19954 on: September 20, 2009, 09:20:19 PM »
Here's a new perspective.

I just finished Elephant. By all accounts I should have loved this movie, but I am practically seething with anger. Only Van Sant could have turned such powerful subject matter into something so completely ineffective. He has absolutely nothing to say, he just builds his characters out of cliches and then revels in his own masturbatory filmmaking for the duration of the movie. Paranoid Park was an annoyance, but this movie is a disgrace.

I haven't watched these two, but I saw Last Days and Gerry.  Both cases left me somewhat cold, should have loved those movies but didn't.  Early GVS made some of my all time favorite movies, I wish he would go back to make independent as opposed to experimental films.   
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Bill Thompson

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19955 on: September 20, 2009, 09:20:59 PM »
Here's a new perspective.

I just finished Elephant. By all accounts I should have loved this movie, but I am practically seething with anger. Only Van Sant could have turned such powerful subject matter into something so completely ineffective. He has absolutely nothing to say, he just builds his characters out of cliches and then revels in his own masturbatory filmmaking for the duration of the movie. Paranoid Park was an annoyance, but this movie is a disgrace.

As I said in the other topic those cliches are done on purpose. He does that to point the finger at the audience and say, "There isn't a reason for why they kill, you want for there to be a concrete reason so you have something to blame, but there isn't one." GVS has plenty to say, from the first frame he pushes the ambiguity of the entire event, and he never lets up. Elephant is a very powerful film with a lot to say about humanity and our need to label people and events, to put them in neat little boxes where they make sense to us.

oneaprilday

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19956 on: September 20, 2009, 09:21:42 PM »
Little Dieter Needs to Fly

****/****
Dieter is a truly amazing human being. The way he talks about the most harrowing things is remarkable. His will to live is inspiring. I am glad I watched this before Rescue Dawn, as some of the things he talks about are so fantastical that I would not have believed them in the context of a fictional retelling.

So glad you loved this! Completely agree.

Rescue Dawn
Overall, I like the documentary quite a bit more than this film.

I know some people commented that the ending was cheesy, but if you watch the documentary you know its all true. The real story is actually even more chessy. The general lets him have his quarters to sleep on the ship for several weeks.

Same for me in liking the documentary more - though I think I liked Rescue Dawn more than you did. I thought Bale captured much of the charm and charisma of the real Dengler. I think you may be right, too, about the documentary affecting how I felt about the ending, which didn't bother me at all.

Melvil

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19957 on: September 20, 2009, 09:32:56 PM »
As I said in the other topic those cliches are done on purpose. He does that to point the finger at the audience and say, "There isn't a reason for why they kill, you want for there to be a concrete reason so you have something to blame, but there isn't one." GVS has plenty to say, from the first frame he pushes the ambiguity of the entire event, and he never lets up. Elephant is a very powerful film with a lot to say about humanity and our need to label people and events, to put them in neat little boxes where they make sense to us.

"There is no explainable reason" is something that can be done effectively, this isn't it. If that's what he was going for, why include scenes of every stereotype imaginable for the killers? The other characters were just as badly portrayed, Van Sant putting together a collection of every high-school personality stereotype in the book. Of course they were only fodder for his little staged tragedy anyways, so there's not much to say about them.

oneaprilday

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19958 on: September 20, 2009, 09:35:48 PM »
I think you're putting some of my feelings about Elephant into words, Melvil.

°Keith!

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #19959 on: September 20, 2009, 10:30:06 PM »
As I said in the other topic those cliches are done on purpose. He does that to point the finger at the audience and say, "There isn't a reason for why they kill, you want for there to be a concrete reason so you have something to blame, but there isn't one." GVS has plenty to say, from the first frame he pushes the ambiguity of the entire event, and he never lets up. Elephant is a very powerful film with a lot to say about humanity and our need to label people and events, to put them in neat little boxes where they make sense to us.

"There is no explainable reason" is something that can be done effectively, this isn't it. If that's what he was going for, why include scenes of every stereotype imaginable for the killers? The other characters were just as badly portrayed, Van Sant putting together a collection of every high-school personality stereotype in the book. Of course they were only fodder for his little staged tragedy anyways, so there's not much to say about them.

wow, i really wanna smack you right now ;D

Its not about him saying something, and to always expect that is kinda lazy.  The intent of this and last days and gerry ect is a kind of semiotic investigation - its up to YOU to say something.  Unlike say Pixar, this is actually art as film (not to knock it - i love entertainment as much as the next person).  You have these ideas and judgments in your head and he give you visuals that provoke those associations.  Meditate on your own reactions - not on what you think Van Sant's might be because you don;t know what they are because he's actually not interested in telling you.  This is why something like Theo Angelopoulos' Ulysses' Gaze (which tries to do the same thing) doesn't work for me is that I really have no cultural knowledge base from which to draw on to interact with what I'm seeing.  But to disregard this side of the film is to lose so much of what makes the film great.