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Author Topic: Respond to the last movie you watched  (Read 672515 times)

smirnoff

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3280 on: March 03, 2019, 01:25:37 PM »
It's the Rocco Columbo School for Women. In the original play the line is "typewriter maintenance at a women's school!" My guess is that Sorkin changed the line to something that has more sonic poetry.

I was going by the IMDB quotes page, but glad to see the correct version. Even so, the question still remains... what is the Rocko Columbo School for Women? Google gives me nothing. Could it really just be a name pulled from thin air?

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Something else I wondered this time watching the film... did Kevin Pollack (a known impressionist) give Tom Cruise pointers for doing an impression of Jack Nicholson. Nicholson isn't in the scene when Tom Cruise does it... but I wonder if he's ever watched the movie. It would be fun to know what his reaction was.
I always figured it was Cruise having fun with the line. A rare moment where a Nicholson impression fits the moment and the character.
If that was Cruise coming up with that off the cuff, that's pretty great. I does fit the moment and character, I agree. Thinking about it from the actor's pov, Cruise is calling back to a moment that was shot who knows how many days or weeks previous, or possibly hadn't even been shot yet. That's pretty sharp!

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This film is somehow totally engaging, and yet the experience isn't taxing. Like at all. I feel I could begin to watch it again as soon as it's over. Most really good films leave me emotionally worn out. The idea of watching even something like Star Wars twice in a row is exhausting to me. To go through all those highs and lows and that big ending... and then to do it all again? No way. A Few Good Men  doesn't deliver the same emotional impact for me... and yet it's still a favourite. I don't quite know what it's getting by on exactly. Not big cinematic artistry that's for sure. The presentation is very straightforward. It's whatever's left I guess.
In my Top 100.
As for cinematic artistry, the film is shot by Robert Richardson and it taught me that static frames can be just as visually dynamic. That comes through in the opening credits (which I read were designed and shot by Richardson.) Some of the best focus changing I've ever seen. There are shots with this incredibly crisp edge lighting so that it looks like the actors ears could catch fire. There's definite artistry, but it mostly gets by on writing and acting. (Would you say Top 3 Tom Cruise performances? It's probably my #1.)
Oh I agree, I think it's great how it's done... I just mean that this isn't a film with complex tracking shots, and slo-mo, and obvious flourishes. This is about as wild as it ever gets, and that's kind of the only example there is on that level. The credits being their own thing of course. As you say though, the approach they took is plenty effective.

Top 3 Cruise performances for sure. Probably my number 1 as well... Cruise is one of the great angry actors of all time, and I think this movie affords him more angry outbursts than any other.
Off the top of my head:
-"Permission to..." "SPEAK! Jesus!"
-"CINECAST! you, Harold!"
-"So don't tell me something something something, I know the law!"
-"Rocko Columbo something something something, advice for the galactically stupid!"
-"You're a lousy CINECAST!ing softball player, Jack!"
-"There was no 11 o'clock flight out of St Andrews, what the CINECAST! are you trying to pull!"
-"Did you order the code red!"

Great stuff. :)

1SO

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3281 on: March 03, 2019, 01:35:16 PM »
Now I want to hear from someone who doesn't think it's Cruise's best performance. I thought you might go with Vanilla Sky.

"It's a helpful unit."
Cruise: Good. Because for a minute there, I thought we were talking about a f--king mask!
"It's only a mask... if you treat it that way."
Cruise: Oh, no. It's great. This completely takes care of Halloween. But what about the other 364 days of the year?

smirnoff

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3282 on: March 03, 2019, 01:46:37 PM »
One of my favourite scenes in that film! :))

Vanilla Sky was definitely in the running. As was Rainman. Mission Impossible one or three.

Bondo

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3283 on: March 03, 2019, 09:17:15 PM »
Alone/Together (2019)

There is an interesting dynamic with my local AMC theatres. Two of the four near me have pretty standard fare but one always has a few Hindi films while another always has Mandarin films. I imagine this speaks to ethnic enclaves in those respective parts of town. It can be a bit tricky to gauge which of these films I should take seriously because RT/Metacritic aren't always useful in these situations. In any event, in looking through the offerings at the theatre this week, this Filipino film caught my attention mostly because it comes from a woman director.

I am not sure if this film is typical of Tagalog films, but it definitely had a Bollywood vibe minus the song and dance. That is to say, it had a particular style in the language use, mixing English and Tagalog in a free flowing way, sometimes blending individual sentences, sometimes repeating things in each language. This is a common thing in Bollywood films (but obviously not in Tagalog). It also has similarities with Bollywood in prioritizing big melodramatic romance. Here we get our meet cute between an art history student "Tin" (guiding a HS class at a museum) and a pre-med student "Raf" who happens to be at the art museum. It is love at first "well, actually" as he intervenes to correct her on a point she makes about a track name from Filipino band The Eraserheads.

There is a point after this that things got a little foggy for me and I'm not sure if the film itself handled it sloppily or if my focus drifted momentarily, but post-graduation Tin gets wrapped up in her bosses embezzlement scandal in some form which, along with Raf not making progress at his goals, leads them to drift apart and she falls in with Greg, who got her out of her jam and becomes both her boyfriend and boss, which certainly doesn't sound like it will work out. The film jumps five years forward and tbh for a second I thought Greg was Raf. They have a similar sort of look/hairstyle, though Raf wears his emotions on his sleeves while Greg is all business. In any event, we get reversal after reversal playing with the romantic possibilities of the main two. A side-text to the romance is a message about staying in The Philippines to improve it rather than emigrating West. This too is a theme often seen in Bollywood.

Anyway, I ultimately found this too emotive to really buy into.

MartinTeller

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3284 on: March 03, 2019, 09:27:24 PM »
Maybe modern movies have ruined me, but The Jungle Book is sluggish as hell. Carrie and I both struggled to keep our eyes open, it was just... so, so boring. The songs are pretty good, and Baloo is entertaining. But Mowgli is rather annoying and useless, the animation seems crude, a lot of gags fall flat and it's slow, slow, slow. Needs more George Sanders. Rating: Fair (64)

Teproc

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3285 on: March 04, 2019, 06:32:50 AM »
Alita: Battle Angel (Robert Rodriguez, 2019) - 4/10

I did read Gunnm (as it's called here, I guess it's called Alita in the US) back in middle school and remembered it somewhat fondly, but I didn't remember the main characters having those freaky eyes. Well, not in-universe anyway (all manga heroines have big eyes obviously), so that was very disconcerting, unnerving even, especially juxtaposed with Rosa Salazar's performance, which is all about teenage energy and charm... on an uncanny valley body. This could make for a very interesting film about identity, humanity etc. but that's not what Rodriguez is here for. Instead, we get some decent action, a watered-down dystopia which seems really not that terrible to live in, and an awful love interest. Oh, and Christoph Waltz, who's fine in the early parts, but looks ridiculous as a fighter and his character seems to lose all consistency by the end, completely abandoning what seemed to define him for no particular reason.

Une intime conviction / Conviction (Antoine Raimbault, 2019) - 7/10

Courtroom drama featuring the generally-excellent Olivier Gourmet as Eric Dupont-Moretti (basically the most famous lawyer since Vergès in France) and the even-more-consistent Marina Foïs as a fictional character inserted into the real life case of a woman disappearing and literally everyone in the country thinking her husband killed her. It's shaped like a judicial thriller, but ends up being both a two-hander character study (Foïs's character's obsession is very clearly unhealthy) and a 12 Angry Men-like plea for reasonable doubt ("une intime conviction" being the loosely equivalent term in French law, from another angle but same basic idea). Quite effective, mostly because of the two central performances, though I wish it delved a little more into what brings her to the (relative) extremes she goes to.

Two-Lane Blacktop (Monte Hellman, 1971) - 6/10

There's a lot to like here, especially in Warren Oates's performance and character, but the generational divide is not very fairly explored here, with this playing more like a boomer fantasy of Kerouac-like road tripping, with the young characters basically being right and superior to Oates in every conceivable way, which also makes them tremendously boring.

Le chant du loup / The Wolf's Call (Abel Lanzac, 2019) - 6/10

This starts off so well, with one of the best thriller sequences I can think of in mainstream French cinema opening the film... and then we have to get an actual story and things start to fall down, in no small part because of the protagonist, who's played by one of those inexplicable white guys popping into every film suddenly despite having seemingly no talent (François Civil), who can't help but bring the film way down despite the quite strong cast surrounding him (Omar Sy, Mathieu Kassovitz, Reda Kateb), all doing pretty good work here. I have a lot of goodwill towards that film, because "big" genre movies such as this are so rare in France, but it ultimately has the same issues these films often have when Hollywood makes them.

Paddington 2 (Paul King, 2017) - 6/10

Why this gets praised to the heavens compared to its predecessor is absolutely beyond me. It retains some of the charm and energy of the first one, but adds nothing to them and loses a lot of the joy there is in discovering, sidelining the family for a pretty uninspired Brendan Gleeson turn as a gentle giant type. It's still fun and all, but a disappointment for me.

Mandariinid / Tangerines (Zaza Urushadze) - 7/10

A pretty simplistic war drama, which works much better than it should because of two very strong performances. I might be overrating that one a bit, but, well, quiet humanism is my weak spot.

Love Steams (John Cassavetes, 1984) - 7/10

This played as more as a comedy to me (and most of the people in the theater it seemed) that it seems to for most people, looking at reviews here and there. This was my first Cassavetes, and if this is representative of his style I'm quite curious to see more, especially A Woman under the Influence, since I liked what I saw here from Gena Rowlands a lot, and it seems like this would be much more of that.

First Reformed (Paul Schrader, 2017) - 7/10

I started off loving this, but it lost me as it took a turn to the Taxi Driver end of things... everyone praises Hawke's performance, but I think it's actually the problem with the film: I don't think the turn his character takes is there in the performance at all, or at least I didn't see it. So I'm left with gorgeous shot compositions and three-quarters of a film I loved, and a conclusion that - though I wasn't "with it" - was still interesting. Not quite the masterpiece I'd heard of, but still very much worth seeing.

Game Night (John Francis Daley & Jonathan M. Goldstein, 2018) - 7/10

Very fun, with some of the funniest scenes of the year (certainly a worthy Filmspot nomination for that bullet removal one, not sure what I'm going to vote for there) and a very game cast - Rachel McAdams especially. Of course it lays it on a little thick at times (towards the end especially), but it's all a fun time... though as an avid boardgamer, I must object to the idea that people this into games would still be into charades (fine but there are better options) and Risk (way too long), let alone Life (unplayable).
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ProperCharlie

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3286 on: March 04, 2019, 07:27:06 AM »

Two-Lane Blacktop (Monte Hellman, 1971) - 6/10

There's a lot to like here, especially in Warren Oates's performance and character, but the generational divide is not very fairly explored here, with this playing more like a boomer fantasy of Kerouac-like road tripping, with the young characters basically being right and superior to Oates in every conceivable way, which also makes them tremendously boring.


I kind of agree, apart from the bit about them being boring.  The generation gap is so wide in this film, it's approach a generational chasm.  The younger generation gets on with it in a quietly efficient manner while the older only has bluster, indignation and money.  Plus ca change...

I find that inner focus and competence fascinating as well the overall mood of the piece.  An alienation from the world of old men who won't let go.  An open road that leads nowhere, but which is traveled with a purpose.  A mutual menace that crackles subtextually like the velociraptors stalking Pete Postlethwaite in The Lost World: Jurassic Park, only if they were considerably more laid back.   

That said, that divide isn't explored, it's just allowed to exist and simmer.  And this is most definitely a Boomer fantasy of almost sneeringly self-aggrandizing proportions.  Existential, but far quieter than Easy Rider, and nowhere nearly as self-celebratory as American Graffiti. 

1SO

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3287 on: March 04, 2019, 01:29:59 PM »
Alita: Battle Angel (Robert Rodriguez, 2019) - 4/10

...completely abandoning what seemed to define him for no particular reason.
This was what I thought about Robert Rodriguez's direction



Paddington 2 (Paul King, 2017) - 6/10

Why this gets praised to the heavens compared to its predecessor is absolutely beyond me. It retains some of the charm and energy of the first one, but adds nothing to them and loses a lot of the joy there is in discovering, sidelining the family for a pretty uninspired Brendan Gleeson turn as a gentle giant type. It's still fun and all, but a disappointment for me.
I liked Gleeson, but agree about the rest. My theory is that critics didn't notice the Wes Anderson style the first time around, which is more of a thing for building hype than heartwarming characters. I'll take Hugh Bonneville's performance in Paddington 1 over Hugh Grant in Pad 2.

oldkid

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3288 on: March 04, 2019, 01:54:22 PM »
It's the Rocco Columbo School for Women. In the original play the line is "typewriter maintenance at a women's school!" My guess is that Sorkin changed the line to something that has more sonic poetry.

I was going by the IMDB quotes page, but glad to see the correct version. Even so, the question still remains... what is the Rocko Columbo School for Women? Google gives me nothing. Could it really just be a name pulled from thin air?

There were schools in the 70s and before which were basically secretary's schools that taught typing and dictation and the like.  I'm pretty sure that's what's being referenced.  So low on the totem pole that they can't even be a student at one of these low-level schools.

My #1 Tom Cruise is Magnolia.  A Few Good Men is quite good, but I love his co-stars just as well.
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Teproc

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3289 on: March 04, 2019, 02:20:06 PM »
Paddington 2 (Paul King, 2017) - 6/10

Why this gets praised to the heavens compared to its predecessor is absolutely beyond me. It retains some of the charm and energy of the first one, but adds nothing to them and loses a lot of the joy there is in discovering, sidelining the family for a pretty uninspired Brendan Gleeson turn as a gentle giant type. It's still fun and all, but a disappointment for me.
I liked Gleeson, but agree about the rest. My theory is that critics didn't notice the Wes Anderson style the first time around, which is more of a thing for building hype than heartwarming characters. I'll take Hugh Bonneville's performance in Paddington 1 over Hugh Grant in Pad 2.

I'm not sure you can miss the Wes Andersoniness of it all in the first one, but I guess the prison sequence is even more overt in some ways, since it brings a specific film (Grand Budapest) in mind, and a recent one at that.

I didn't dislike Gleeson really, I just don't think he's that special, and I had heard a lot of praise for him. Grant is fun I suppose, but yeah, devoting more time to him than to the family was a mistake: Kidman was perfectly fun as an over-the-top villain in the first one with much less screentime.


Two-Lane Blacktop (Monte Hellman, 1971) - 6/10

There's a lot to like here, especially in Warren Oates's performance and character, but the generational divide is not very fairly explored here, with this playing more like a boomer fantasy of Kerouac-like road tripping, with the young characters basically being right and superior to Oates in every conceivable way, which also makes them tremendously boring.


I kind of agree, apart from the bit about them being boring.  The generation gap is so wide in this film, it's approach a generational chasm.  The younger generation gets on with it in a quietly efficient manner while the older only has bluster, indignation and money.  Plus ca change...

I find that inner focus and competence fascinating as well the overall mood of the piece.  An alienation from the world of old men who won't let go.  An open road that leads nowhere, but which is traveled with a purpose.  A mutual menace that crackles subtextually like the velociraptors stalking Pete Postlethwaite in The Lost World: Jurassic Park, only if they were considerably more laid back.   

That said, that divide isn't explored, it's just allowed to exist and simmer.  And this is most definitely a Boomer fantasy of almost sneeringly self-aggrandizing proportions.  Existential, but far quieter than Easy Rider, and nowhere nearly as self-celebratory as American Graffiti. 


Where i think it pales in comparison to Easy Rider specifically is in that lack of introspection. If Easy Rider is a eulogy, Two-Lane Blacktop is a puff piece. An interesting one though, stylistically, and Oates does bring something in his performance that I'm not sure was in the script, some nuance.
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