Author Topic: Top 100 Club: 1SO  (Read 11240 times)

Dave the Necrobumper

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #30 on: July 14, 2018, 03:46:23 PM »
Ok I am back home now, after a nice 2 week holiday. Lots in your list I have not seen.

Some possibilities for watch:

Dawn of the Dead (I recent bought an ex-rental copy, which I hope works)
Requiem for a Dream
Grave of the Fireflies
Destry Rides Again
Gone with the Wind

Teproc

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #31 on: July 16, 2018, 02:28:32 PM »
Mission: Impossible III (J.J. Abrams, 2006)

Appropriately, out of the whole franchise, this is the only M:I film that feels like a TV show. That's not a bad thing necessarily, but the supporting characters are not strong enough to make the feeling of thez team working together satisfying enough: Ving Rhames 's shtick is not my favorite thing about these films, and of the new team only Pegg makes a real impression, though he's given much better material (by himself ?) in the McQuarrie movies. As befitting of a film in this franchise though, there is a great action sequence at the one-hour mark, which is enough to make it a decent film, though one I'm puzzled to see you single out as your favorite of the bunch 1SO. Maybe it's the Michelle Monaghan stuff that works for you ? I guess Cruise is at his most emotionally involved here, but I just don't think that's his best take on that character, as it makes him into a rather banal hero rather than the insane thrill-delivery-machine that he truly longs to be.

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1SO

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #32 on: July 16, 2018, 03:07:26 PM »
I'll direct you to my lengthy review, but I can point to 3 small reasons that make this the best of the series.
1. The opening scene between Cruise and Philip Seymour Hoffman is my favorite scene of the entire franchise.
2. The backstory between supporting character interrupted when Hunt comes crashing in.
3. That bridge scene in particular and Abrams directing in general.
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PeacefulAnarchy

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #33 on: July 17, 2018, 05:46:09 AM »
No Name on the Bullet (1959) 8/10
This is really neat little discovery I probably wouldn't have watched without this project. It's held back a bit by the very traditional Western acting, but the writing more than makes up for it. On its face it's a rather straight forward film, killer comes to town and a moral panic ensues, but it takes a more philosophical perspective on the proceedings, the whole film being a long run up to the action scenes you begin to doubt will come. It looks nothing like a noir, but in spirit it very much could be one as the disruption of daily life uncovers the rough dark aspects of a seemingly quaint and mundane town. The two leads aren't the best actors, but they have the presence to sell their roles even as their appearance might have made most casting directors switch the parts, and their initial subversion of appearances adds to the film. The menace isn't physical, it's psychological, a force that plants a seed and lets it spread of its own accord, and that makes the whole thing relatable in a way a traditional western can rarely be.

Teproc

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #34 on: July 17, 2018, 07:40:31 AM »
I'll direct you to my lengthy review, but I can point to 3 small reasons that make this the best of the series.
1. The opening scene between Cruise and Philip Seymour Hoffman is my favorite scene of the entire franchise.
2. The backstory between supporting character interrupted when Hunt comes crashing in.
3. That bridge scene in particular and Abrams directing in general.

I didn't mention PSH, who is good as always but could have benefited from more screentime (as you mention in that review). The bridge scene is really well-directed, I do agree there.
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pixote

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #35 on: July 17, 2018, 01:22:55 PM »
As much as I like No Name on the Bullet, I still don't think it quite lives up to the greatness of that title.

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1SO

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #36 on: July 18, 2018, 01:47:43 AM »
No Name on the Bullet (1959) 8/10
This is really neat little discovery I probably wouldn't have watched without this project.
This is the right way to describe it. It's how Antares passed it onto me when I was looking for an Audie Murphy western with a good performance by Murphy. By this point, most of my Western blindspots star Murphy. According to IMDB, he starred in 33 Westerns. I've seen 10. I can recommend 3, but No Name is the best by far.

On its face it's a rather straight forward film, killer comes to town and a moral panic ensues,
It's a simple idea, but one of my favorite things about the film is how everything unfolds. Watching the town tear itself apart in fear and panic is a lot of fun, especially with Murphy just calmly watching it happen. The closest comparison I can think of is The Intruder (1962), but in that one you know William Shatner is there to stir things up.

I like the way we've been able to pass on No Name on the Bullet to others, like a secret treasure.
And I agree pix, that's one of the best Western (or Noir) titles ever.
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Teproc

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #37 on: July 18, 2018, 02:43:50 AM »
Requiem for a Dream (Darren Aronofsky, 2000)

I hadn't been avoiding this film exactly, but I wasn't in a particular hurry to get to it. Part of it was its reputation as a tough watch, but I also got the feeling in recent years that its stock had gone down pretty fast, that it was a film "of its time" that hadn't aged well, that was a big deal for a certain generation but that wouldn't hold up.

Well, I don't know if people actually think that or if I had only constructed that narrative in my head, but I'd disagree with it either way. What I'm most surprised here is by how accomplished the dilmmaking is, and how well Aronofsky's agressive style - and I should also give credit to Matthew Libatique and Jay Rabinowitz, since the editing and cinematography are so key here - works in service of the film. Despite Leto and Burstyn's forced Jersey accents (probably the single worst choice this film makes), there's a sense of universality here which is fitting of a story which is essentially a modern fable. It's blunt (in occasionally ridiculous ways, such as the "Fall" intertitle's brutality), but not excessively didactic and has quite a bit more on its mind than simply addiction, or even modern alienation. Whether what it has to say is original or deep is quite beside the point though: what matters is that it does so in an effective and striking manner.

The performances are a big part of what makes it work, obviously. Coming in, I knew Ellen Burstyn was supposed to be the standout and I was sligthly dreading Jared Leto, who's become a parody of himself in recent years to the point that one can wonder if there was every anything there in the first place... as it turns out (and excepting the regrettable accents), Burstyn is indeed remarkable, and Leto is quite good himself, esepcially when acting opposite Burstyn and showing a more caring side to his character. But the performance I found myself drawn to the most, possibly because I wasn't expecting to, was Connelly's. They're all tragic figures that the film sets up to be crushed, but she's the one whose story still feels unfinished by the end of the film, or perhaps more accurately, the one who has the most open-ended arc. I can see how it might look exploitative (especially the final sequence), but I think the film treads that line relatively well, and she lets her character be more than simply a victim.

Finally, there's the elephant in the room, the glu that holds the film together and perhaps its biggest cultural legacy: Clint Mansell's score. It's very much of its time, but not in a way that I found distracting at all: weirdly it still manages to imbue the film with a sense of universal fatalism. It certainly doesn't qualify as subtle, but Aronofsky doesn't overuse the famous crescendo part of it either (I think it shows up three times total), and the it goes through more variations than I was expecting, too.

In the end, it's not a film I'd call a favorite because - predictably - I don't really see myself rewatching it. It belongs in the same category of A Clockwork Orange to me, of films I admire and respect, and even connect to strongly at times, but can't quite love as much as their directors other works (in this case, Black Swan remains Aronofsky's crowning achievment for me even though it is a less "clean", less accomplished film in some ways). Still, very much worthy of its status.

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1SO

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #38 on: July 18, 2018, 01:38:37 PM »
First of all Teproc, I really appreciate the zeal you've taken to my list. This month has strengthened my resolve to approach other people's lists in a similar manner when there are unseen titles on it.

I've also noticed a drop in the film's reputation over time. It's partly because we've now seen Aronofsky use this aggressive style multiple times since, often mixed with the pseudo-doc style of The Wrestler, which is just as tightly controlled but doesn't look it. I don't think it's a case of a director repeating himself to the point of parody, but this story matches his style the best.

On rewatches, I'm fascinated by the decision to stop everything in the middle for a lengthy acting scene between Burstyn and Leto. Very simple setups, simple lighting, minimal editing and sound design, until he hears her grinding her teeth. Of course that's another style choice, but it shows that he can strip away everything and the acting can keep the tension just as high.

At the end of the Decade, I combined all my acting lists (Lead, Support, Male, Female) into a 10 definitive performances of he 00s.
1.   Julia Roberts Erin Brockovich
2.   Russell Crowe A Beautiful Mind
3.   Jennifer Connelly Requiem For A Dream
4.   Ellen Burstyn Requiem For A Dream

5.   Mickey Rourke The Wrestler
6.   Nicole Kidman Moulin Rouge
7.   Sean Penn - Milk
8.   Haley Joel Osment A.I.
9.   Charlize Theron Monster
10.   Eileen Walsh The Magdalene Sisters


Requiem was also my pick for the Best Editing and Sound Design of the decade. At the time, I also had it on top for Best Score, but would probably go with Ratatouille now.
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Teproc

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Re: Top 100 Club: 1SO
« Reply #39 on: July 18, 2018, 02:32:28 PM »
First of all Teproc, I really appreciate the zeal you've taken to my list. This month has strengthened my resolve to approach other people's lists in a similar manner when there are unseen titles on it.

It might have something to do with your list being long and overlapping with other interested of mine, but I do think I should do multilple films on people's lists more often than I do, it's nice.
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