Author Topic: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)  (Read 10201 times)

Thor

  • Godfather
  • ******
  • Posts: 6536
    • KTQ
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #20 on: May 26, 2009, 03:56:54 PM »
Got GD on the shelf and watched Magnolia (aka not the best US film of the 90s) two rounds ago.  I'll be in.

Watching something 2 rounds ago qualifies?

I should vote in the Trust v RD match-up...
Wanting for Thor what Thor wants for Thor.

ˇKeith!

  • Objectively Awesome
  • *****
  • Posts: 26658
  • Bitch, I been around since LimeWire.
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #21 on: May 26, 2009, 04:00:44 PM »
Got GD on the shelf and watched Magnolia (aka not the best US film of the 90s) two rounds ago.  I'll be in.

Watching something 2 rounds ago qualifies?

I should vote in the Trust v RD match-up...

I really doubt there will be any new insights discovered in the intervening two months.  I plan more on looking at the other verdicts on these films and interacting with them.

I thought we were not allowed just to vote but have to provide at least a decent rationale to accompany a decision but I say by all means join in.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2009, 04:02:57 PM by _Keith_ »

pixote

  • Global Moderator
  • Objectively Awesome
  • *****
  • Posts: 31936
  • Up with generosity!
    • yet more inanities!
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #22 on: May 26, 2009, 04:20:34 PM »
Watching something 2 rounds ago qualifies?

I should vote in the Trust v RD match-up...

It's all a gray area.  Use your best judgment.  Or judgement, if you prefer.

I watched Ghost Dog last round, so I'll only revisit it for this verdict if after watching Magnolia I'm still not 100% sure which film deserves to advance.

pixote
I think I'd love how awkward it'd be, or how awkward it should be.

FifthCityMuse

  • Elite Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3375
  • Good work, sycophants!
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #23 on: May 27, 2009, 08:47:07 AM »
Turns out I need to pay more attention to the TV guide. Ghost Dog was on tonight.

Melvil

  • Godfather
  • ******
  • Posts: 9978
  • Eek
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #24 on: May 28, 2009, 02:12:18 PM »

Magnolia (Paul Thomas Anderson, 1999)

You can read my 5th round writeup on Magnolia if you really want to. For now I'm going to focus on Ghost Dog and come back to Magnolia in my verdict.



Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (Jim Jarmusch, 1999)

This was my first viewing of Ghost Dog, and since it has made it this far into the bracket and gotten quite a bit of praise I expected it to be something special. For the most part, I think it is. The unique qualities of the premise have already been discussed at length in previous writeups, and I too enjoyed the unusual combination of elements and their presentation.

I think what I most liked are the minor details in the story. The seemingly inconsequential elements that, when stacked together, are what really add depth to the otherwise simple plot. The humor really adds to the experience as well, the writing is pretty great (and only occasionally awkard). Ghost Dog is a really fascinating character to spend time watching, I get the impression that not everyone is sold on Forest Whitaker's performance, but I thought it was pretty spot on. The rest of the characters are pretty great too, Pearline and Raymond play incredibly important (and fun) roles, the mob guys are almost caricatured, but they work (the exchange between Louie and Vinny about being sent out like "real gangsters" was a nice cap).

A few problems: Reading through the past reviews I see I'm not the only one who took issue with some of the stylistic choices. At times it suffered from just plain poor choices, or became distracting. Most of the time Ghost Dog was shown to be a very professional, methodical, and resourceful hitman, and I was really disappointed when they required some major suspension of disbelief in what he was capable of. Also, every now and then something in the story just felt forced (Raymond and Ghost Dog repeating each other, for instance).

Overall a very good movie, and I'm really happy I finally saw it.



Verdict

Stay tuned!

Junior

  • Bert Macklin, FBI
  • Global Moderator
  • Objectively Awesome
  • *****
  • Posts: 27320
  • What's the rumpus?
    • Benefits of a Classical Education
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #25 on: May 28, 2009, 03:13:23 PM »
Magnolia starts off with a bang. The little stories set up the general premise of the story which is recalled at the end in a pretty awesome way:


But I'm getting ahead of myself. The movie proper starts off with a glimpse at all the characters. PTA gets so much groundwork done here with few words outside the voiceovers from a TV or radio




And then what I call the 2001 song comes on at the end of this scene:

Phil Pharma turns as if he can hear the music come on. Then he stands and looks around, trying to find the source.

Then comes the big BA BA! and Phil turns at exactly that moment.

And then there is a cut to the one and only Frank T.J. Mackey...

and the quick introductions keep rolling on.



She can't stop pulling her curtains down...

There are more introductions but they're all pretty similar. PTA sets up his characters perfectly and sets the story (as such) in motion.
Check out my blog of many topics

“I’m not a quitter, Kimmy! I watched Interstellar all the way to the end!”

roujin

  • Objectively Awesome
  • *****
  • Posts: 15401
  • it's all research
    • ssmvc
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #26 on: May 28, 2009, 03:31:59 PM »
But what about that CINECAST!ing rapping kid, evil twin?

Melvil

  • Godfather
  • ******
  • Posts: 9978
  • Eek
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #27 on: May 28, 2009, 03:42:27 PM »
The introduction to Magnolia is indeed amazing, and gets better with repeat viewings.

Melvil

  • Godfather
  • ******
  • Posts: 9978
  • Eek
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #28 on: May 28, 2009, 05:14:22 PM »
I'm just heading out the door and haven't had time to type up a proper verdict, so here's the short version: Magnolia wins! Yay!

Junior

  • Bert Macklin, FBI
  • Global Moderator
  • Objectively Awesome
  • *****
  • Posts: 27320
  • What's the rumpus?
    • Benefits of a Classical Education
Re: 90s US Round 6: Magnolia vs. Ghost Dog (Deadline: May 31)
« Reply #29 on: May 28, 2009, 05:17:32 PM »
But what about that CINECAST!ing rapping kid, evil twin?

What of him? He isn't the best part for sure, but I love JCR's reaction throughout.
Check out my blog of many topics

“I’m not a quitter, Kimmy! I watched Interstellar all the way to the end!”