Author Topic: Respond to the last movie you watched  (Read 90794 times)

Bondo

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3900 on: November 30, 2019, 08:35:08 AM »
Frozen 2

I am trying to decide if this is better or worse than Pocahontas. That isn't as bad as many might take it because I do think at a minimum Pocahontas has a really strong set of songs. But both stories concern the interaction between a white European group and an indigenous population where the indigenous population is portrayed as somewhat magical and especially connected to nature. While this is nominally a positive portrait, it nevertheless is a problematic portrait. One issue with Frozen 2 is that I, and presumptively most Americans, have no real historical knowledge about interactions with indigenous populations of Northern Norway/Sweden...after all, we think of the Scandinavian countries as a place where "white" people ARE indigenous. So inevitably I read the themes more in line with the Native American cause. And here I have to decide if the film's being pretty decisive on where blame lies is enough to make up for a predictably safe Disney ending.

And maybe here like others, it comes down to the music. Good music in a musical papers over a lot of sins. I think Frozen 2's songs are largely decent, though none would break into the top-3 from Frozen of Let It Go, Love Is An Open Door and For the First Time In Forever. I don't think it matches up to Pocahontas' slate of songs. So I'd say the songs neither doom nor save it. Probably what does keep it mostly afloat is just goodwill toward these characters and the comedic sense in the script.

B-

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

For a film that is at least on paper one bound for commercial success, given people's affection for Fred Rogers and for Tom Hanks, this is a formally bold project. There are a few moments where it feels like The Truman Show, with Lloyd (Matthew Rhys) a misanthropic journalist feeling something is just not quite right about this world of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood that seems too kind to be real. He keeps looking for the "but" underlying everything. If the film explores the Mr. Rogers Effect through how Lloyd processes his own personal trauma and baggage, I couldn't help but think about the state of America, and the need for similar treatment of our political psyche. The question is who has the presence and the empathy to help us process our pain. This is a film that feels a bit longer than its run time, something I'd probably say about the TV show, because it has a slower, quieter, gentler nature. This suits a man working through family issues much more than big political questions of life and death. But like Rogers' wife notes here, she hates the term saint, because that implies that it is something that comes supernaturally rather than something that is worked toward with effort every day. One hopes this movie can at least give those watching it a little extra patience to work through things.

B+

Bondo

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3901 on: November 30, 2019, 06:51:02 PM »
Queen and Slim

This isn't a particularly good film. It does ask the needed question of whether people should be able to kill cops in self defense. I, a moderate, suggest instead we make the standard for exercise of lethal force by police higher than "reasonable perception of threat." Maybe then there would be less situations where you could see yourself siding with cop killers.

C+

FLYmeatwad

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3902 on: November 30, 2019, 08:20:40 PM »
A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood really surprised me, especially given the trailer and what it could have been. Kind of a similar reaction to me last year with Can You Ever Forgive Me?, though I think there script there was slightly better, but Heller's putting together pretty strong work. Dark Waters surprised me today similarly, as the trailers for that thing looked rough, and it does go 'in the direction' more than ABDitN does, there's still a lot going on around the edges. I shouldn't have underestimated Haynes, someone who I do really like, despite many signs pointing towards this being okay at best (and maybe having the strangely poor luck of coming out around the same time as The Irishman as the two share more similarities than one would imagine).

I need to start that F2 spoiler thread I owe 1SO.

Unfortunate to hear about Q&S as well, it was one I've been on the fence about, but will probably catch up when it hits streaming.

Bondo

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3903 on: November 30, 2019, 09:25:18 PM »
The accents in the trailer for Dark Waters are brutal. Saw the trailer with a friend from North Carolina and she confirms.

1SO

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3904 on: December 01, 2019, 10:35:09 AM »
The Lighthouse
★ ★ ★ - Okay

I'm still trying to tie everything into some kind of meaning or theme, which is what always anchors David Lynch's surrealism. Once I relaxed into it's languid pace and repetition of routine - this is as close to a Bela Tarr riff as I've seen - I enjoyed the rich atmosphere and interplay between the two actors, though Pattinson often struggles to not get dashed upon the rocks by Dafoe's salty sea dog. Just wish I could find more in it.


Daniel Isn't Real
★ ★ ˝

Luke's imaginary friend convinces him to try and kill his mother and so must be banished. Years later, crippling anxiety convinces him to bring let the uber-male friend back into his life. Think of it as a bit of Fight Club and Beetlejuice, though it never leans on those films for plot points. The director has a great idea (and I love the title), but not the experience to make the most of it. The result is messy in terms of both story and tone, but I like the big reach it takes and (like Antrum) if you're a fan of horror, there's plenty here to make it worth your time.
Must See  |  Should See  |  Good  |  Mixed  |  Bad

philip918

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3905 on: December 02, 2019, 12:12:07 PM »
Some airplane movies:

Aladdin (2019)
The most successful of the live-action Disney remakes I've seen, which isn't saying much. At the very least the setting, costumes, and characters are colorful and vibrant and Ritchie strives to keep the energy high throughout. Smith's Genie starts out on the wrong foot as he tries and fails to pull off Robin Williams's version of the iconic blue demi-god, but the screenwriter and director rightly steer him into a Hitch-style mentor/buddy that Smith can do with charming ease. Naomi Scott is very good as Jasmine, and the story gives her more to do, though I thought her new song felt completely out of place stylistically. I also thought Mena Massoud was a pretty good Aladdin. Easy to watch, but ultimately forgettable.

Late Night (2019)
Talk about forgettable. Wears The Devil Wears Prada on its sleeve, but doesn't give Emma Thompson nearly enough material to wear Streep's high heels after they've made their way to the outlet factory bargain bins. I don't mind a movie hitting its themes right on the nose as long as it does so in an entertaining and engaging way, but Late Night fails in its primary task of being either of those things. Bland and boring.

Ready or Not (2019)
Neither bland nor boring, I found this dark comedy thriller totally delightful. The writers and filmmakers best storytelling move is making the family a bunch of frightened, backbiting, bumblers rather than simple murderous villains. The movie doesn't revolutionize the contained thriller, but it is fleet-footed and funny, and features a standout performance from Samara Weaving. Simply a lot of fun and makes me excited for Knives Out.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3906 on: December 03, 2019, 12:57:56 PM »
Knives Out

Most fun I've had in a theater in a long time. Rian Johnson knows how to play with expectations and boy does he take the murder mystery thriller and give it just enough twists and wrinkles to keep it engaging without ever becoming overbearing. The audience seemed to be having a lot of fun too, so here's hoping we get more of this Rian.

Jojo Rabbit

Not as laugh out loud funny as I was hoping but an effective mix of satire and drama. I think what makes the satire work so well is that you're seeing the fanaticism of Nazism and hatred of Jews through the eyes of a child which just starts to break down the more and more he literally comes face to face with the object of his hatred. There are a few tonally unsound moments, the dinner scene with mom comes to mind, but overall I thought it worked.

Under the Silver Lake

It's been a long time since a film has gotten its hooks into me like this one did. Once you get that initial hump, the film is a fascinating breadcrumb of mysteries that keeps going and going. I like that it doesn't presume to bring closure to every mystery and I dug the tone it evoked. A lot of people cited Kubrick, Hitchcock and Lynch as influences, but I honestly thought a lot more of DePalma's Blow Out, especially since both films are a distinct blend of politics, paranoia and romance. I'm not sure that every moment works, the early scenes in particular feel a bit indulgent in how much of a degenerate the main character is. I feel like that point gets made much better once he's in the midst of trying to unravel the mystery. 

philip918

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3907 on: December 03, 2019, 06:39:47 PM »
The Irishman (2019)

The last thirty minutes felt as long as the first three hours. Joe Pesci was the highlight and will probably make my Filmspots ballot. I suppose the most effective thing about the three-and-a-half-hour runtime is it gives you almost enough time to get used to the de-aging CGI. De Niro's eyes always looked a little off, moving just a little too slowly and looking a little too flat. Which, I could say about the movie as well. There aren't any scenes that really stand out even a day later. Guess I can't muster up much sympathy for the Devil.

Bondo

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3908 on: December 03, 2019, 07:48:14 PM »
I read oneaprilday’s twitter thread and buy The Irishman as reflective commentary on how the women in these stories are omitted (both in the telling and actually within these men’s world). But I still would rather not watch 3.5 hours of this sort of male community, none of whom I care if they live or die. An actual film that observes these stories from the women left behind is the movie I’ll wait for.

FLYmeatwad

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #3909 on: December 03, 2019, 07:52:58 PM »
Scorsese's ultimate conundrum: too meditative to be #FBC, too #FBC to be meditative.