Author Topic: Respond to the last movie you watched (2013-2016)  (Read 419903 times)

Bondo

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #10010 on: January 07, 2017, 01:31:13 PM »
Kicks
This movie needs some love guys.
And you have now put it on my radar. Is this the correct film? If so, I'm curious why the IMDB rating is so low. What do you think is causing the backlash and why do you disagree with it.

Kicks (2016)

If you only see one film about troubled masculinity in the African-American community, watch Moonlight, but by all means try to watch two and see Kicks because it another excellent exploration of the topic. Teenager Brandon (Jahking Guillory) doesn't feel tough and doesn't have the money for the shoes he feels will earn him respect. When he is able to get his hands on a pair of shoes, it looks like things are going to turn around for him when he's attacked by some toughs and his shoes are taken away. Thus he sets out on a mission to reclaim his shoes and prove his mettle.

A lesson of the film may well be that if your self-worth is tied up in something that can so easily be taken from you, it is both a facade and something you'll always be on guard of losing. In the form of toxic masculinity, what we see from these men (boys really) is a total lack of proportionality. Every possible slight must be escalated, lest you become the "bitch." As the observers, we watch in dread that these individuals are going to let it get the best of them.

Mahershala Ali, like in Moonlight, delivers a strong supporting performance as the sage, older male role model with his own background in the harsh world. While it contemplates masculinity, this film isn't quite as transgressive of it as Moonlight, which results in more stereotypical roles for women, and no stand outs, but I don't know that it is a major mark against the film. The surreal aspects are a little more of a burden just because I don't find them really earning their keep. Still, on the whole it is quite a powerful film to pair Moonlight in joining the pantheon of films like Boyz In The Hood in critiquing gangster masculinity.

B+

DarkeningHumour

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched (2013-2016)
« Reply #10011 on: January 07, 2017, 03:06:25 PM »
Star Trek Beyond

Great fun. I very much liked that it had a little more on its mind than having a good time but did not overdo the solidarity/togetherness vs. individuality thing at the same time. The two new characters, the woman and the bad guy, were well drawn for what they needed to be, and the action scenes were fun and well executed. Certainly better than Into Darkness, perhaps not as good as the first one, but only just.

B+


La La Land

I understand the people who think this is a cynical and misguided attempt at capturing a bygone style of movie and failing completely at it. They just don't have love in their hearts, and it is sad so they should be pitied. Though this movie could be easily described with a formula for taking pieces from different movies (pretty much all of which are in my Top 100, including An American in Paris and The Umbrellas of Cherbourg), there's enough new to keep me interested and, more importantly, invested in these characters. Though Gosling and Stone might not be Astaire and Rogers as far as singing and dancing go, they are better actors and so I was actually attached to these people as people rather than just really talented performers. And Chazelle makes some really wonderful choices to depart from reality before crashing back down to earth, formally speaking. It's a confection with little nutritional value, but there's something to be said for a really tasty desert. There are 5 great musical moments/songs here, which is a pretty big number for the genre.


Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Watched this again in 3D Imax. It's glorious. The space battle at the end is particularly fun in that format, as is the Death Star. That bit with the dude is still one of the best scenes Star Wars has ever had for its sheer terror, though the ending is currently a little less happy than it needs to be to kick us into the original trilogy for extratextual reasons. I'm sure the feelings I felt the first time watching the scene--joy and excitement and, well, hope--will return in a few months, but for now I feel more melancholic than I think I was supposed to. It's supposed to be part of it, but now it's all of it.

A-

I couldn't resits the review of La La Land. It's great. I hope it turns out to be everything you say. fingers crossed. Like, really, crossed, strongly, to knuckle shattering extents.

You're wrong about Beyond though. That movie is a horrendous betrayal of the first two movies. Those two characters are not well written, they're awful. They never feel like real people, they're cartoon characters that make decisions to further the flimsy plot and their subplots are rammed into the movie to pretend that what they do makes sense. It doesn't. Loner Robinson Crusoe types don't start trusting newcoming foreigners because they were funny in those Wright movies. And that bad guy reveal. Hugh...Even Khan was more subtle.

Which watch of Rogue One did you enjoy most? I got out of my first projection distraught and was thrilled with my rewatch.
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DarkeningHumour

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched (2013-2016)
« Reply #10012 on: March 22, 2018, 10:00:49 AM »

The Saint Takes Over - (1940)
"I just wish I knew your angle, Saint. Whose side are you on?"
"I'm on my own side."


Because of his typical film roles and his voice, smooth as a python, you're never sure you can trust George Sanders. (Jeremy Irons has a similar gift.) When this mystery/thriller started I knew it was part of a series with Sanders as the hero, an enigmatic righter of wrongs who might be working for the government. The wife didn't know, and so for a while didn't trust him, until the plot finally started to get a bit confusing and she asked, "who is this guy?" I said to think of The Saint as an early version of James Bond, and that's when everything clicked. For both of us.

If you were casting James Bond in 1940 you can't go wrong with George Sanders. He's got the confidence, the delivery, the smarts. You can see him working the angles and coming up with ways to gain confidence or inspire fear. Because this is classic Hollywood, the emphasis isn't on big stunts, though there are a few exchanges of fists and bullets. It's refreshing to see a character like this who isn't using heavy firepower to stop a madman from world domination. (The stakes with Bond grew cartoonishly large long ago and rarely looked back.) Here, The Saint is after a gang of criminals and a large amount of stolen cash. He's clearing the name of an Inspector framed by the organization and manipulating a man on the inside while the bodies continue to pile up. To paraphrase Maltese Falcon, this is a man who enjoys talking to people who like to talk. Someone who enjoys a well-prepared drink and doesn't just sip them as part of his cover. I wish I was half as cool as George Sanders playing The Saint.
Rating: * * * - Good

Ugh, I wish I could find it somewhere.
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Smoke

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Re: Respond to the last movie you watched
« Reply #10013 on: October 11, 2019, 01:03:12 AM »

...

That led into The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1973) which holds up beautifully. * * * 1/2. The pacing is quick, the stakes remain high, the action is fluid and there's a lot of comedy I didn't notice the first time in the way the dialogue captures the attitude of New York City. Joseph Sargent wins the directing contest over all three by Siegel.

Saw it the other day, thanks to Andrew Halter (sorry for the plug but it's here: https://andrewhalteromniblog.com/2017/03/29/movie-review-the-taking-of-pelham-one-two-three-1974/ ), and really loved it. A good example of extraordinary craft brought upon a marketplace product. Maybe not Casablanca but it's hard to imagine anyone disliking this film. Great cast of period stars. If all movies were this good I wouldn't be an alcoholic...
« Last Edit: October 11, 2019, 01:08:46 AM by Smoke »