Author Topic: Respond to the last movie you watched  (Read 90705 times)

philip918

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3850 on: November 06, 2019, 12:11:07 PM »
Honeyland (2019)

This, more than just about any film I've seen, strains the definition of what a documentary film can be. It's much closer to something like Chloe Zhao's The Rider, using real people and circumstances to tell a dramatic story. And that story is immensely compelling and very well told. Hatidze, the dauntless beekeeper living in a remote valley caring for her ailing mother, is an exceptional character. We meet her crossing vast terrain, climbing a mountain, and walking along the edge of a cliff to get wild bees for her hives. These opening minutes are phenomenal and I could have watched 90 minutes of her simply going about her day to day caring for her bees and making honey. Then her new neighbors show up and the filmmakers have no qualms amping up the audio mix and magnifying the cacophony of bleating cattle and screaming children. These semi nomadic ranchers abuse their animals, endanger their children, and are nearly unbearable. In fact, they were to my wife. We stopped about twenty minutes in and I had to finish on my own this morning.

Thus begins Hatidze's parable. It's as simple and epic as it is a little too tidy. Ultimately I found it compelling and well worth the watch.

1SO should avoid this at all costs.

1SO

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3851 on: November 06, 2019, 04:34:11 PM »
At first glance I thought this was about the Shia LaBeouf film Honey Boy. Then as I read it clearly was not, and nothing you said got me interested, so your last line sounds accurate.
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FLYmeatwad

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3852 on: November 07, 2019, 07:34:53 PM »
Came in here to echo most of the Jojo Rabbit talk thus far. Liked all the pieces, but never coalesced in to a whole. Think some of it I put at the feet of the kid playing Jojo, as he's pretty much out of his league throughout the thing. He feels like he'd fit better on a Disney Channel show, which is weird because TW got such a great performance out of the kid in TH4tWP in a similar role. Some of it here is because the rest of the cast is doing so much all the time. Like I'm not sure if ScarJo has ever done so much capital a Acting in a role that I can think of, to the point where she started to rub me the wrong way despite, by and large, being on board with her. McKenzie is fantastic, great seeing her here after that breakout in Leave No Trace, especially after being wasted in The King. Idk, this film is fine.

Bondo

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3853 on: November 08, 2019, 01:08:27 PM »
Waves

Before I begin, I did not see the second half of this, as I had an extremely early flight the next morning (booked for work after I had bought my festival ticket), so I am not offering a rating, just comments on what I did see.

The first note is that there is a very good visual panache to it. Definitely in league with Harmony Korine (who appears as an actor here) and perhaps a touch of Gaspar Noe. The score from Reznor/Ross is very atmospheric and plays more of a role in the film than is generally the case (case in point, I noticed the score, which I usually don't).

Second, for the first half of this film, the perspective centers on a High School senior and his descent into increasingly toxic masculinity. Now, the film kind of sets this up as a result of a few bad turns of luck, but I would argue, the toxic male was always there. It is the stressor moments that hold up the mirror. I struggled mightly with the tone of this first half. I haven't seen Joker yet, but certainly the discussion around it was concern about its putting you in the shoes and perhaps trying to get you to empathize with a toxic character. Even if you don't accept that Scorsese's films have glamorized mob and wealthy fraudster lifestyles, they certainly focus on these characters and by the nature of cinema, ask you to empathize. Thing is, I do not want to empathize with toxic men. Not even as part of a cautionary tale against toxic masculinity.

American Dharma (another film I haven't seen) seems to be drawing some criticism because Errol Morris gives Steve Bannon a platform without going hard at him and his ideology. I increasingly feel like the appropriate way to focus on white supremacist ideology isn't to give it an airing so people can judge it...or to even give it a platform in the context of criticism. The appropriate way to handle it is to ignore it completely. To starve it completely of attention. So I would say is the case for toxic masculinity. Don't tell those stories; don't give them representation. Instead represent the alternatives.

As it comes to Waves, the second half switches perspective to that of his younger sister, and the general fall-out of the dramatic incident that splits the film. I may ultimately reconnect with this film to watch the second half. However, reading some takes on the film, I am not sure I will be satisfied with its turn towards forgiveness and the like. But I guess we'll see.

MartinTeller

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3854 on: November 08, 2019, 09:44:56 PM »
It was nearly 10 years ago when I first saw the 1968 War and Peace and was blown away by it. Enough to put it on my top 250 list despite only one viewing. I patiently waited and waited for a Blu-Ray release, and when one finally came from Criterion, I had precious little free time to devote to a 7-hour movie. With my wife out of town for a week, it was the perfect opportunity.

I got three hours into it before I decided the thrill was gone. Despite all its majestic cinematography, dizzying opulence and impressive epic-ness, I just couldn't get engaged. The characters are dull, the dialogue doesn't sing (I'm sure it reads much better on the page, or if you speak Russian) and it's just too stuffy. I think I can't truly enjoy elegant period settings unless there's some humor to it (Smiles of a Summer Night, Amadeus).

With another recent disappointing viewing (Saraband) I'm wondering if 250 is too big a number for a list of my favorites. Or if I should just stop caring about making lists entirely. Also I really need to get more careful about what I purchase. Even after having greatly curbed my collecting habit, I still end up selling off a lot of what I buy.

Rating: incomplete, but I bumped my score down from 95 to 85 (probably still too high) anyway
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Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3855 on: November 08, 2019, 10:13:54 PM »
I think 250 is too big even at 100 I start feeling iffy on some choices after time has passed. Tastes change and not every film holds up on multiple viewings.

At some point I plan on rewatching my top 100 just to go back and enjoy them instead of constantly watching new films.

1SO

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3856 on: November 09, 2019, 10:21:55 PM »
The Irishman
★ ★ ★ Okay

I wish this had more masterful touches. I'm not asking for Fury Road, where an aging filmmaker caps off his defining genre in a blaze of glory. While that would've been awesome, I understand how that approach wouldn't fit the story or character. However, I think about Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven, the work of a filmmaker who was older and more contemplative yet still managed to bring the fireworks to remind people of his abilities. There's a hit in the middle of the film that briefly flirts with a more energized Scorsese, but I'm torn by the decision to slow everything down so that the climax becomes like a documentary. (This includes not using any music at all.) I understand the strategy, but hard as I try I can't help being disappointed by the restraint. I would not have expected to prefer Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, but Tarantino built a time and place I loved existing in. Scorsese took me on a tour of history that was mostly interesting but rarely exciting.

It does have one great Scorsese scene type that rarely gets discussed, the intense verbal confrontation. Think of Goodfellas - "Am I a Clown" or "Now go home and get your shine box." or Raging Bull, "Did you ---- my wife?" This has two scenes featuring Pacino and Stephen Graham. The first one is really good but the 2nd (which includes two other characters) is a classic Scorsese confrontation between people who won't put up with being insulted. The camera set-ups are simple and the actors just give Thelma Schoonmaker everything to work with. What they come up with is *chefs kiss*.

Along with the expected needle drops - none of which are great - there's a theme composed by Robbie Robertson that sounds like Ennio Morricone by way of Gorillaz.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2019, 10:29:19 PM by 1SO »
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smirnoff

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3857 on: November 09, 2019, 10:34:32 PM »
@MT

Given the rate you find yourself watching (or rewatching) films now, 250 does sound like a big list to try and maintain. I can't really maintain 100 even right now. The rate I'm replenishing my list with new favourites definitely isn't keeping up with the rate old favourites are dropping off. So be it. A rock solid top 25 or top 50 or whatever you feel confident is just as good. That number can always expand as you find more time, or more luck, in the future. I for sure relate to your experience though. :)

Curious if there is another film that, for you, has dethroned Saraband or War and Peace for scratching whatever itch those films used to scratch.

smirnoff

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3858 on: November 09, 2019, 10:50:07 PM »
Along with the expected needle drops - none of which are great - there's a theme composed by Robbie Robertson that sounds like Ennio Morricone by way of Gorillaz.

This description is *chefs kiss*. I just gave it a listen. It made me nod and chuckle. :)

MartinTeller

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3859 on: November 09, 2019, 11:00:59 PM »
@MT

Given the rate you find yourself watching (or rewatching) films now, 250 does sound like a big list to try and maintain. I can't really maintain 100 even right now. The rate I'm replenishing my list with new favourites definitely isn't keeping up with the rate old favourites are dropping off. So be it. A rock solid top 25 or top 50 or whatever you feel confident is just as good. That number can always expand as you find more time, or more luck, in the future. I for sure relate to your experience though. :)

Curious if there is another film that, for you, has dethroned Saraband or War and Peace for scratching whatever itch those films used to scratch.

Not really... after I recently rewatched Le Doulos I put it on a "maybe" list but now I'm not feeling too jazzed about it. I think 250 is definitely too big but at this point I'm inclined to just leave it alone, let it be history and simply enjoy the stuff I enjoy without dithering over whether or not it deserves a spot in my personal "canon".
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