Author Topic: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood  (Read 14747 times)

oldkid

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #30 on: February 26, 2020, 08:08:42 PM »
Since my time is running down, who goes next month? I'm ready for some new discoveries, beside all the westerns I'm lining up.

Working that out now.  Give me a day or so.
"It's not art unless it has the potential to be a disaster." Bansky

Bondo

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #31 on: February 26, 2020, 10:34:38 PM »
Crude

This is a case of a story being better than the documentary. The doc sent me to the web to find out some more details, and perhaps more importantly, the additional ten years of events since this documentary doesn't end with even a temporary ending much less anything that takes into account various appeal processes in international law.

Do I think that Texaco polluted this portion of the Ecuadorian Amazon as part of their oil-extraction operations? Probably!
Do I think that Texaco failed to fully remediate the environmental impact of their actions when they left in the early 90s? Possibly!
Do I think that Texaco should be found liable for current pollution/health problems in the area? Absolutely not.

I'm naturally sympathetic to the people who are the subject of the field and are in the Plaintiff role, as well as the firm that represents them. The firm I work for does contingency-based Plaintiff work too. But the documentary has the smoking gun evidence (vis a vis an affirmative defense) that it doesn't seem to acknowledge as such. Texaco ceded the property to the Ecuadorian state oil company in a contract that specifically indemnifies them against the claims they face in the litigation pursued by the indigenous peoples being harmed here. At that point, any and all responsibility falls squarely on the state oil company or the government of Ecuador.

Having come to that conclusion based on the documentary it is interesting that it seems Texaco, not the Ecuadorian people, had initially insisted on trying the case in Ecuador instead of the US. It is less surprising that the Ecuadorian courts found Texaco liable and less surprising that the international courts ultimately tossed out that judgment finding that the Ecuadorian process had been corrupt. Given that Ecuador's government would be liable if Texaco wasn't, it seems a big conflict of interest for Ecuador's court system to hear the matter so it isn't particularly shocking to find out it wasn't on the up and up. Anyway, sometimes the just result isn't the one we like.

Eric/E.T.

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #32 on: February 26, 2020, 11:49:25 PM »
Bigger picture: Capitalistic greed and corporate power take advantage of a small, weak country, and indigenous people die. I don't care about technicalities or legalese, and neither should anyone else. It is the system that empowers corporations to maim the environment and work a long-term legal strategy of attrition that is the problem, and both points are strongly made in this film.

Whether you like the film or not is a matter of taste, and I have enjoyed reading your opinions greatly. You always give me something to think about. Don't think I didn't take notice on your response to my blurb on "The Assistant", because I thought about that, too. On the issue here, though, I'm a little surprised you are reducing such suffering to a "result". That's a morally fraught minimization of what a highly marginalized and vulnerable people have suffered. To boot, if Texaco polluted the water supply with carcinogens, and later those people saw a rise in cancer, then Texaco played a hand in their deaths. The correlation just makes no sense any other way. Hence, they should be punished. Either morally or materially, why defend Texaco?
A witty saying proves nothing. - Voltaire

Bondo

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #33 on: February 27, 2020, 12:19:36 AM »
The doc frames it as a legal matter so I approach it with a legal mindset. If the film took a different approach, it might have compelled me to view it through a different prism.

Eric/E.T.

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #34 on: February 27, 2020, 12:22:47 AM »
It portrays it as both moral and legal, including the moral bankruptcy of corporations being able to wage forever wars in court. And you went well beyond just the film.
A witty saying proves nothing. - Voltaire

smirnoff

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #35 on: February 28, 2020, 01:42:59 AM »
Your Name
 
Parts of this I was really on board for. The concept generates many humourous moments... some crude and others clever. There's also a nice wholesomeness to the story and it's characters. The animation is tremendous and often mesmerizing. However I did struggle to stick with it through to the end, through all the flash-backs and montages and dreams. As the film went on the concept seemed to expand but it also became more vague as it incorporated more and more elements. The gist was always clear, where it was headed was generally clear, but the mechanics of it were quite a mystery. I think in the last third of the film I just wanted it to hurry up and get there.

It was an excellent twist when the part about the city being destroyed 3 years ago is revealed. It upped the emotional impact of the story a lot, which was very welcome at that point. Somehow though I couldn't maintain that feeling for very long. Maybe there was too much frustration in the plot for me to enjoy the experience. The setbacks felt somewhat arbitrary (due to the vagaries mentioned earlier), and it just prolonged a journey that already was beginning to feel long. The experience seemed to loop, and new information came at a trickle, all the while you basically understand where you need to get to. I struggled.

So kind of a miss for me even though I had nothing but good will for it thanks to it's kind and heartful story and characters. Just not quite on board with the storytelling.

oldkid

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #36 on: February 28, 2020, 11:48:48 PM »
Since my time is running down, who goes next month? I'm ready for some new discoveries, beside all the westerns I'm lining up.

Working that out now.  Give me a day or so.

1SO is up for March, and he has a new list heís working with.
Oldkid is up for April
Sandy is up for May
"It's not art unless it has the potential to be a disaster." Bansky

Eric/E.T.

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #37 on: February 29, 2020, 12:07:34 AM »
Your Name
 
Parts of this I was really on board for. The concept generates many humourous moments... some crude and others clever. There's also a nice wholesomeness to the story and it's characters. The animation is tremendous and often mesmerizing. However I did struggle to stick with it through to the end, through all the flash-backs and montages and dreams. As the film went on the concept seemed to expand but it also became more vague as it incorporated more and more elements. The gist was always clear, where it was headed was generally clear, but the mechanics of it were quite a mystery. I think in the last third of the film I just wanted it to hurry up and get there.

It was an excellent twist when the part about the city being destroyed 3 years ago is revealed. It upped the emotional impact of the story a lot, which was very welcome at that point. Somehow though I couldn't maintain that feeling for very long. Maybe there was too much frustration in the plot for me to enjoy the experience. The setbacks felt somewhat arbitrary (due to the vagaries mentioned earlier), and it just prolonged a journey that already was beginning to feel long. The experience seemed to loop, and new information came at a trickle, all the while you basically understand where you need to get to. I struggled.

So kind of a miss for me even though I had nothing but good will for it thanks to it's kind and heartful story and characters. Just not quite on board with the storytelling.

I'm a big fan of mind-benders and cinematic time traveling experiments, and this is one of my favorites. Also, like you said, the animation is so eye-popping and wonderful, even with what I think is a lesser accomplishment for Makoto Shinkai in Weathering With You, which I think does suffer some storytelling issues, it's so compulsively watchable that I never had a hard time being there with it.

Well, I'm glad you gave it shot, at least. Thanks for checking it out!

OK, 1SO time starts in less than an hour (Phoenix time!)! How someone takes 12,000+ films and boils it down to 100, I dunno, crazy. It's been fun, but now time to go back to the peanut gallery.  ;D
A witty saying proves nothing. - Voltaire

Teproc

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #38 on: February 29, 2020, 08:32:26 AM »
Exit Through the Gift Shop (Banksy, 2010)

This starts out very interesting and only gets more fascinating as it progresses. It feels like a tragedy at times, but then it turns out it's a farce. It's incredibly specific but ends up being about big subjects like art, celebrity and authenticity (I haven't seen Copie conforme but I would wager these two would make a good double bill)... we have a clear point of view here, that is to say Banksy's, and there was a point in the film where I felt a bit at odds with him. Specifically when Thierry shows him his attempt at cobbling together the footage into a documentary, his reaction seemed excessively dismissive to me, and the brief extract we got from "Life Remote Control" made it seem quite interesting, a genuinely unique piece of avant-garde cinema. So when the film presents Thierry, now Mr. Brainwash, as a derivative hack, a cautionary tale about the shallowness of the contemporary art scene, I wonder. Is his art as uninteresting as it seems, or do I think that simply because it is presented that way, much like the people going to that "Life is Beautiful" expo may only think it's great because it feels like the thing you're supposed to feel in that context ? I've sometimes felt that Banksy's own work was of that caliber, and my view on art is generally that there is no objective value, only what an individual feels and thinks when and after encountering it.

These questions are what make this more than an entertaining foray into the world of street art, more than just the story of a weird, interesting guy. And I suppose it makes sense that it makes people question the authenticity of the documentary itself, though that seems quite far-fetched to me. It certainly never occured to me watching it that it might be a hoax, and the limited information I've seen on this seems quite unconvincing... but of course you would doubt it, because the film invites that line of reasoning, purposefully or not. It doesn't matter at all of course, but it's food for thought in a captivating and entertaining package.

8/10
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oldkid

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Re: Top 100 Club: etdoesgood
« Reply #39 on: March 01, 2020, 12:41:15 AM »
I just watched 3 Faces.  Iíll post a review here... tomorrow, I hope.
"It's not art unless it has the potential to be a disaster." Bansky