Author Topic: Respond to the last movie you watched (Jan 2011 - Nov 2013)  (Read 1389328 times)

verbALs

  • Godfather
  • *****
  • Posts: 9446
  • Snort Life-DOR
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7020 on: September 02, 2011, 12:59:46 PM »
Loves me some Rocco
I used to encourage everyone I knew to make art; I don't do that so much anymore. - Banksy

Bondo

  • Objectively Awesome
  • ******
  • Posts: 21754
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7021 on: September 02, 2011, 03:21:06 PM »
Super

This movie has every ounce of my contempt. It is a not clever exercise in sadism that has far less to say about "real" superheroes than Kick-Ass. I feel sympathy for the actors being put through some of what goes on here, particularly for poor Ellen Page. Context is everything and this is far more exploitative than something like Hard Candy in its use of her body and sexuality because that film actually makes a point. Welcome to the new worst film of 2011.

1/5

MP

  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 572
    • idFilm
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7022 on: September 02, 2011, 03:31:46 PM »
The Thin Red Line 5/5 (rewatch)
Terrence Malick   1998   USA
US forces land on Guadalcanal in the Pacific to take a heavily defended position from the Japanese army.
Military atrocities occuring in a natural paradise accommodates Malick's formal and thematic preoccupations well: as the intense and ominous sound design conflicts with the beautiful imagery, the depiction of war's horrors has a remarkable efficiency, heightened (just about) by the various characters providing ruminations in voice-over, philosophizing on why men kill other men and why we can't all just get along. The lamenting tone almost overwhelms the bigger picture, but whether Malick knows it or not, the woes of his world have their foundations in its politico-economical structure, and so any serious artistic response to it necessarily includes representative elements. As a result, the script is quick to ask questions with a childlike awe but its answers are all implicit, so in spite of any other intentions, you get for instance a portrayal of an army as a branch by which capitalism recruits from the classes it oppresses and exploits them for imperialist expansion, and as a necessary extension of domestic social structure, referred to in patriarchal terms in George Clooney's closing cameo. And you get Nick Nolte's bureaucratic officer dictated by the logic of petty self-preservationist politics, as he relieves Elias Koteas of his captaincy for "being too soft", appealing like any pathetic proponent of an established hierarchical order to the "cruelties of nature". There's a great sensitivity and humanity at work here that hints, intentionally or not, towards injustices more systemic than nebulous (though the film is praised for exactly the opposite); at the moment in which our band of brothers finally break through enemy lines, as Jim Caviezel asks, "Who's doing this, who's killing us? Robbing us of life and light", Malick shows us the enemy is as vulnerable and human as the westerners whose stories we've hitherto followed. Koteas might steal the show but the acting in general is incredible. As Sean Penn's sergeant notes in the midst of a battle: "Property. The whole f'cking thing's about property."

The Deer Hunter 5/5 (rewatch)
Michael Cimino   1978   USA
Three Pennsylvanian steelworkers enjoy a wedding before experiencing the atrocities of the Vietnam War...
Contextually-speaking, for better or worse, a film very much of its time; sincere, flawed, generally brilliant. Sidestepping analysis but not plot contrivances, this war epic is moving precisely because the conditions under which it was made accommodated a budget and script that allowed the nuances and relationships between ordinary people the space to develop both narratively (the opening act, based around a wedding, is an hour long) and pictorially (close-ups are used sparingly, the social fabric is vivid). It gives the film an emotional depth even when its latter scenes risk sentimentality. Though its iconic centrepiece is the Russian Roulette torture sequence, the overall focus is very much on the emotional and moral devastation felt by a small industrial community, with the deadly game carrying symbolic significance, the turning point not only of the narrative but of the characters' lives, a trauma that irrevocably tears apart the preceding harmony. The acting is impeccable - it's hard to imagine more realistic scenes of collective drunken joy, or the great unease felt between friends in the aftermath of war and at the onset of a generational patriotism at once defiant and misplaced.

Sam the Cinema Snob

  • Objectively Awesome
  • ******
  • Posts: 25480
  • "Anime is for jerks."
    • Creative Criticism
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7023 on: September 02, 2011, 03:40:51 PM »
Great thoughts on The Thin Red Line. It certainly is a film that lends itself to the idea of the injustice of the entire system we've developed for war.

1SO

  • FAB
  • Objectively Awesome
  • ******
  • Posts: 33396
  • Marathon Man
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7024 on: September 02, 2011, 05:05:51 PM »
High 5, Bondo. I agree completely, except it's only my 2nd worst movie because I have intense hatred for another film. Still, it's miles worse than Hop, my 3rd lowest movie.
Must See  |  Should See  |  Good  |  Mixed  |  Bad  | The Worst

MP

  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 572
    • idFilm
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7025 on: September 02, 2011, 07:01:00 PM »
Some write-ups of films I re-watched last month...

The Intruder L'intrus 3/5
Claire Denis   2004   France
An ageing man pursues a heart transplant and goes in search of a son he fathered across the globe, whilst ignoring another.
Denis's adaptation of a short essay by Jean-Luc Nancy is an elliptical film with a sombre tone, given a lingering menace by the Tindersticks score and a disquieting, effective depiction of human physicality and its limits and fragility. Editorially intriguing and visually suggestive, with scenes recalling one another and accumulating to an enigmatic reflection on the spiritual, moral and political implications of trespassing across material borders - bodily, domestic and national. Depending on one's mood, it's either frustrating or brilliant; overall, it's probably both, and too unique to dismiss.

Kes 5/5
Ken Loach   1969   UK
In northern England, a schoolboy whose future is destined for industrial labour discovers a passion for falconry.
Sensitive, naturalistic drama in which the focus on a young boy gains much depth and profundity from a careful eye on the visual backdrops: its sense of place (shot in and around Barnsley) is extraordinary, and while the milieu is notably grim, it'd be reductive to suggest Chris Menges's cinematography isn't pictorially aware. Unfolding with an observational authenticity, the film portrays its protagonist (David Bradley) as a believably resourceful lad whose enthusiasm to escape the fate expected of him - to graduate from school equipped for nothing but manual labour - finds its material embodiment in an energy for falconry; the scene in which he entrances his classmates and admiring teacher with his passionate description is hair-raisingly poignant, coming as it does after an unfortunate episode with a tyrannically punitive headmaster and a more comical aside involving a football match, in which even basic sporting potential is trampled by an ill-equipped sports teacher with delusions of grandeur.

The Dead Zone 3/5
David Cronenberg   1983   USA
When he recovers from a car accident, an English teacher discovers he has psychic powers.
Clunkily episodic adaptation of a Stephen King novel, imbued with a dark, cold air by accidental shooting conditions in sub-zero temperatures and the more deliberate directorial flair of Cronenberg. Christopher Walken seems suitably detached and eccentric, unable to grasp the moral responsibilities of the psychic powers he mysteriously attains; opposite him as a third act villain is Martin Sheen, who stamps his feet and rants like a spoilt child as an impossibly villainous candidate for mayor. It hasn't dated well, really, though it has its moments.

Andrei Rublev Andrey Rublyov 5/5
Andrei Tarkovsky   1966   USSR
In early 15th Century Russia, an icon painter struggles to come to terms with the horrors he witnesses at the hands of the Tartar invaders.
Fascinating, complex piece, long in length and novelistic in style, it remains one of Tarkovsky's more historically concentrated films, though necessarily limits itself to a reimagining of a real life artist about whom little is actually known. As a result, it's a self-reflexive work on the process by which an individual intellectual is informed by the social and historical phenomena around him, and the political particularities under and in response to which he works. Its imagery betrays an ambition and its narrative approach betrays a confidence, finding as it does a blend between the creative and the grounded - as does indeed its protagonist in the film; a philosophical epic, it also doubles as a detailed period piece depicting Russia's own religious, political and social (and therefore artistic and intellectual) identity at a time of violent upheaval preceding Tsarism, made itself under Stalinist censorship. Remarkable.

Bondo

  • Objectively Awesome
  • ******
  • Posts: 21754
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7026 on: September 02, 2011, 11:57:14 PM »
Santa Sangre

So, this was a film. The first third or half of this film was actually a pretty good ride. Most of it is a flashback of the character we are introduced to with the opening frame, owling naked in a mental institution. The setting and characters in the flashback are interesting. You've got various circus performers, a religious sect based around some gal who got her arms cut off and a love triangle. And most importantly you've got a young boy and young girl who are part of the circus and have an affection for each other. Their unspoken exchanges are the strongest thing in the film.

It is rather a disappointment when this all proves an elaborate set-up for the trippy/psychological second half which to me was just cheesy low-budget horror mixed with mostly impenetrable surrealism. Mood is the least effective film goal IMO and that is often the point of surrealism. What ideas I thought might be relevant early on are ignored, the plot is so loose as to be irrelevant. There is a bit of development with the central character I suppose, though I was disappointed that they let the girl disappear for a large stretch of the film.

The balance of mess to interest just didn't quite work out.

2/5

Totoro

  • Guest
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7027 on: September 03, 2011, 12:39:00 AM »

Andrei Rublev Andrey Rublyov 5/5
Andrei Tarkovsky   1966   USSR
In early 15th Century Russia, an icon painter struggles to come to terms with the horrors he witnesses at the hands of the Tartar invaders.
Fascinating, complex piece, long in length and novelistic in style, it remains one of Tarkovsky's more historically concentrated films, though necessarily limits itself to a reimagining of a real life artist about whom little is actually known. As a result, it's a self-reflexive work on the process by which an individual intellectual is informed by the social and historical phenomena around him, and the political particularities under and in response to which he works. Its imagery betrays an ambition and its narrative approach betrays a confidence, finding as it does a blend between the creative and the grounded - as does indeed its protagonist in the film; a philosophical epic, it also doubles as a detailed period piece depicting Russia's own religious, political and social (and therefore artistic and intellectual) identity at a time of violent upheaval preceding Tsarism, made itself under Stalinist censorship. Remarkable.

YES.  :)  :)  :)

1SO

  • FAB
  • Objectively Awesome
  • ******
  • Posts: 33396
  • Marathon Man
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7028 on: September 03, 2011, 02:05:20 AM »
Bondo the Brave. I'm very happy that you tried out some Jodorowsky. We're pretty much in agreement, except I'd flip the balance of mess to interest and give it 3 stars. Given the chance, I hope to dictate El Topo to you down the road. (3 1/2 stars)  (There's a hook, but again the plot is almost irrelevant.) El Topo also balances mess with interest, but contains more spectacular scenes and moments. There's one in Santa Sangre, the stabbing scene. In El Topo there are about 6, plus a handful of interesting ideas.

But like I said, somewhere down the road. You've sat through enough Jodorowsky for one year.
Must See  |  Should See  |  Good  |  Mixed  |  Bad  | The Worst

FroHam X

  • Objectively Awesome
  • ******
  • Posts: 17792
  • “By any seeds necessary.”
    • justAtad
Re: Write about the last movie you watched
« Reply #7029 on: September 03, 2011, 02:09:43 AM »
I should watch El Topo and Holy Mountain. But first I need to ask my cousin where he gets his weed. Might as well ask to use his vaporizer while I'm at it.
"We didn't clean the hamster's cage, the hamster's cage cleaned us!"

Can't get enough FroHam? Read more of my musings at justAtad