Author Topic: Write about the last movie you watched (2006-2010)  (Read 3880991 times)

flieger

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25360 on: January 10, 2010, 01:13:02 AM »
 :D

Oh roujin...

ferris

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25361 on: January 10, 2010, 01:27:23 AM »
A Serious Man

What the CINECAST! did I just watch?

**** 1/2

There's a great discussion in our spoiler thread if you haven't seen it yet
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THATguy

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25362 on: January 10, 2010, 01:37:46 AM »
I have and I stick by my initial statement.

Speaking of the Coens...

Intolerable Cruelty

This was just kind of bland and not that funny. Color me disappointed. Although I haven't seen the Ladykillers, easily the worst Coen film I've seen.

FifthCityMuse

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25363 on: January 10, 2010, 02:07:25 AM »
From the Melbourne Movie Marathon.

The Lady Eve Preston Sturges 1941
Screwball romantic comedy where of course you know how it ends so it is the journey that counts. Not a lot of laughs, chuckles yes, a little bit of slapstick.
I think I laughed more at this than the others. It is wonderfully funny, and a wonderful comedy. I do think it's a little ridiculous in terms of plot, but it's just such fun.

B+

Solaris Andrei Tarkovsky 1972
An unusual viewing experience, the DVD version I had must be spliced together from different versions. Mostly it was a dubbed version, but every now and then it would go to a subtitled version, strange.
This is a detail film, long drawn out tracking shots, luxuriating over the scenes. You are given lots of time to study the subjects, not surprising then that during the film there were references to both Tolstoy and Dostoevsky both wordy writers. This did help bring you into the world of madness/reality that Hari was experiencing. Did this film need to be nearly 3 hours long, not really.
People always talk about Tarkovsky like his work is impossibly slow, but I feel like it's a lot quicker than either Werckmeister Harmonies or I Don't Want to Sleep Alone. I also think I liked this a lot more than any of the others at the marathon. I do wish a little that I'd seen it with a little more time to think and process it, because I think it's really remarkable.

I love the way he plays with colour and black and white photography. I think the setup in the beginning is really interesting, and important for what follows. The footage of Tokyo is gorgeous and such a wonderful contrast to the images of nature, which have been the sole dominance to that point. The philosophy was never as heavy for me as I think some of the others found it, and I think it fits really well. It forces you to think but never provides the answers in the conversation, although they are definitely present in the text and subtext.

I found the ending brilliant.

A

The Cook The Theif His Wife & Her Lover Peter Greenaway 1989
Another visual film, but this one a feast. This is the 4th time I have seen this film and it still has not diminished. Now having also watched Greenaway's 'Nightwatching' about Rembrandt I keep seeing what appear to be references to Rembrandt's work (e.g. the way some of the kitchen staff dress). Love this film.
What a film. Pretty gross, right? The use of colour is so extreme and gorgeous, as are the amazing sliding tracking shots from room to room. The costume changes between room are brilliant as are the costumes themselves. Mirren's performance is really incredible.

Incredibly impressive.

A-

All That Heaven Allows Douglas Sirk 1955
Jane Wyman and Rock Hudson in a May September romance, which because of the era it was from I was not sure how it would end, tragedy or not. Some superb framing and use of light and dark, particularly when Jane Wyman's son issues an ultimatum to her, Jane's face is fully lit, while his is shadowed except for the eyes.
I adore Sirk. I think this is probably his second best, right behind Imitation of Life. The photography is amazing, and the colour is so rich and vivid. I love the story, and the wonderful social commentary, whilst occasionally a little obvious, is so fantastic. It's a brilliant film.

A-

Favourite of the marathon The Cook... least favourite (but still enjoyed) That Lady Eve.

'Til next time.
Best: Solaris. Worst: The Lady Eve. Enjoyed them all. Well, maybe enjoyed isn't the best way to describe some of them. Admired maybe.

And today:

The Return - Andrei Zvyaginstev, 2003
My third time watching this film. It's quite incredible. One of the best looking films I've seen. The photography is amazing, and the colour is just as incredible, using blues and greys and startling occasionally with vivid greens.

The plot is simple: two sons are surprised when their long absent father reappears. The older strives to impress, the younger is petulant and stubborn. The father takes them on a trip into the wilderness.

And while it's a simple plot, it's a gripping one, and it's imbued with massive thematic and symbolic overtones. The subtext is pouring out of every scene. I wonder if it's taken me three viewings where it gets to the point that I'm beginning to understand some of the symbols and metaphors and transformations. It's quite and incredible film.

As a side note, it is very Tarkovskian - in the camera movement, in the way it photographs nature and the industrialised world, and the huge presence of water and rain. Impressive.

A

flieger

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25364 on: January 10, 2010, 04:59:04 AM »
The Lady Eve (Sturges, 1941)
 
Sigh. Looks like I have my work cut out for me here.

Any film that starts with the ever-earnest Fonda speechifying about the nobility of science: If I had my way, this is the way I'd like to spend all my time, in the company of men like yourselves in the pursuit of knowledge. and then immediately undercuts this by having his escort, William Demarest be given an ornate lei by his native lady-friend, saying So long, Lulu. I'll send you a postcard. is going to be a good one.

Hands-down, Stanwyck gives the best female comic performance ever, with notes of romance, comedy, sensual predation/desire, and genuine affection and vulnerability. The interplay between her dynamism and Henry Fonda's stock earnestness put this film in a sublime realm. Consider the unbroken shot where they are in the room, as close as can be, with Stanwyck playing with Fonda's hair. Not only is there a great dynamic, great sexual tension, but it's also a great piece of cinema. Or the genius screwball premise where Stanwyck comes to the party posing as an English lady, with nothing to disguise herself but a posh accent, just daring Fonda to call her bluff. Or where Stanwyck is watching Fonda in the ship's dining room with her make-up mirror, giving a commentary on the goings on.

Oh, and the lines! So many, so varied, and so artfully delivered, it makes In the Loop look slow and laboured.

- Don't be vulgar, Jean. Let us be crooked, but never common.

- Charles: Would you care to come in... and see Emma?
Jean: That's a new one, isn't it?


- Charles: Snakes are my life, in a way.
Jean: What a life!


- Harrington: That's the tragedy of the rich. They don't need anything.

- Jean: I need him like the axe needs the turkey.

And so on.

But heck, I already knew that about Stanwyck and the funnies the first time I watched it. The thing that really got me this time is just how much of a proper film it is, especially compared to Sturges' other efforts during this prolific period. No letting the story go off the rails, letting the ensemble go crazy, letting the craziness fatigue the entire film (see Miracle at Morgan's Creek, The Palm Beach Story, Hail the Conquering Hero). This one is tighter, smoother, almost Hawksian in its structure and pacing.

It's as if it's been anchored by the, well, power of allegory (Adam and Eve, Eden, snakes!). The film has this wonderful (teetering?) balance and narrative symmetry that pleased me immensely. The chaos is backgrounded (comparatively), but is still damn funny. And the ending is sublime. Truly sublime.

What can I say? It's a gem. An American classic, and one of the best films ever made.


(Oh, and it handles symbolism, allegory blah-blah-blah with such wit, nimble grace and comic glee... and oh so much better than either Tarkovsky or Greenaway. Makes them look like cold, formalist shills.)

FifthCityMuse

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25365 on: January 10, 2010, 05:11:17 AM »
You point out a great scene, probably the best scene, in the one with the hand mirror. But I can't agree that the symbolism is better handled here - I found it really heavy handed - the snake, the apple; blerg.

flieger

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25366 on: January 10, 2010, 05:23:39 AM »
Heavy handed? Compared to the light touch of the others? Surely not.

Repetition for comedic effect was one of the most enjoyable parts of the film... Fonda going on endlessly about the Amazon and snakes became almost a surreal mantra. and gave plenty of scope for brilliant riffing off of that. And the riffing was handled brilliantly by the performers and the director.

And Stanwyck dropping the apple on Fonda's head was certainly not a "blerg" moment.

Don't get me started on "blerg" moments for those other two... I have a lot of pent-up blergness to go around.  :)

 

'Noke

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25367 on: January 10, 2010, 06:29:04 AM »

The Quiet Man John Ford, 1952

A nuanced and realistic portrayal of the Irish people.

Grrr...
I actually consider a lot of movies to be life-changing! I take them to my heart and they melt into my personality.

FifthCityMuse

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25368 on: January 10, 2010, 06:42:02 AM »
Heavy handed? Compared to the light touch of the others? Surely not.

Repetition for comedic effect was one of the most enjoyable parts of the film... Fonda going on endlessly about the Amazon and snakes became almost a surreal mantra. and gave plenty of scope for brilliant riffing off of that. And the riffing was handled brilliantly by the performers and the director.

And Stanwyck dropping the apple on Fonda's head was certainly not a "blerg" moment.

Don't get me started on "blerg" moments for those other two... I have a lot of pent-up blergness to go around.  :)
Nope, I thought dropping the apple was pretty obvious, and while possibly not a "blerg" moment, I definitely rolled my eyes. I'm not saying the others were lighter in their touch. I think Eve is certainly lighter, but far more obvious and always less oblique. I like some mulit-layered, impossible to interpret symbols personally.

jdc

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Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #25369 on: January 10, 2010, 07:58:02 AM »
Code Unknown Dir Michael Haneke

This one was not as satisfying as the other Haneke films I have seen.  Probably cause I did not understand or follow it as well the others that I have scene. Though I still do not think he can make a bad film
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