The Straight Dope

Go Back   Straight Dope Message Board > Main > In My Humble Opinion (IMHO)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-03-2001, 01:01 AM
Mofo Rising Mofo Rising is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
I haven't seen a thread started about this movie yet. By the way, I'm assuming you've seen the movie. The spoilers are going to flow free here. If you haven't seen it, why are you reading a thread about it?

Let me fill my background. I loved Pi, what a great movie. So you can imagine my excitement when I heard about Requiem For A Dream. But I didn't see it in the theatres, I always put it off.

Months later it was out on video. I went to Blockbuster only to find they only had the edited version. No way I was going to watch that, I went out and bought the movie.

So I'm watching it. This isn't so great. I mean, it's interesting, but not great.

About an hour into it, it starts. It says on the back of the box there is no bottom. Quite the understatement, don't you think? The last few minutes. . . Boy, I'm glad that's over. No, it's still going. "Help us!"

I couldn't drag myself out of this movie's spell for several hours.

What did you think of this movie?
__________________
"It's because they're stupid. That's why everyone does everything."
-Homer Simpson
Reply With Quote
Advertisements  
  #2  
Old 06-03-2001, 08:46 AM
Typo Negative Typo Negative is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
I thought it was a great depiction of of the addict life, right up to the last 15 minutes, where the director went kind of surreal.


But I'll watch anything with Jennifer Connelly in it.
__________________
"In the fight against ignorance, somebody's gotta play defense!" - Polycarp

It is a good analogy, because learning about the real world is a lot like waking up in your own pee/food solution.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-03-2001, 11:28 AM
ThisYearsGirl ThisYearsGirl is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
I thought the situations were really cliche, but it was awesome to look at. Especially that demon fridge. Man, I loved that thing. Fuck Wilson the volleyball--the fridge was the coolest nonliving entity in any movie I've ever seen.
__________________
"I am angry nearly everyday of my life"--Mrs. March, from Little Women
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-03-2001, 11:53 AM
pezpunk pezpunk is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
All I will say is give it a few days or so and you will find yourself picking apart the movie and discover just what a great movie it was. Not life changing but great. I saw it in the theater way before it hit the regular movies and hadnt heard much about it. It was almost irratating to sit through and I felt dirty afterwards. After a discussion about it with other friend who had seen the movie I realized just how much I enjoyed it.
In short.... give it time

PS: Fans of Pi look in the credits.... I'll bet you find no other movie with an "ant wrangler" in it. I love that
__________________
broccoli! can't read or dress himself so try to be nice to him.

pezpunk does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, disability, veteran or marital status or other protected status covered by federal, state or local law.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-03-2001, 12:20 PM
BigGiantHead BigGiantHead is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Quote:
Originally posted by spooje
I thought it was a great depiction of of the addict life, right up to the last 15 minutes, where the director went kind of surreal.


But I'll watch anything with Jennifer Connelly in it.
That's an interesting take. What I got, in re the title, was an extremely powerful look at how people's dreams can become nightmares. Jared Leto and Marlon Wayans's characters dreamed of becoming rich and powerful in their town from selling drugs, but instead ended up penniless and incarcerated in another state. Jennifer Connelly just wanted the love of her boyfriend and a modicum of independence, but ended up enslaved to much more powerful man for the purposes of degrading sex. Ellen Burstyn wanted to be famous and glamorous on TV; she ended up a withered shell in a mental institution where nobody knew her. All their dreams died ... and hence, needed a Requiem.

But on the other point, yeah, I'm with you. Darren Aronofsky could have just pointed the camera at Jennifer, maybe standing at the end of that sunny pier, and had her smile prettily for the camera for two hours. I'd have gone to see that.

- Dave
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-03-2001, 12:56 PM
The Red Menace The Red Menace is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
I really didn't think much of the movie at all. I had really enjoyed Pi, but I just didn't feel that Requiem for a Dream showed that much quality filmmaking. Too MTVish, and the shock treatments scene REALLY bothered me. Some people I know would say "You just can't handle it because it's too shocking," (Pun not intended). Maybe so, but it's pretty unnecessary in my book to go as far as Aronofsky chose to in the film (the afformentioned shock treatments, the amputation scene, etc). At times I felt the movie was downright immoral, a term of which I'm very careful about using. Just because something is horrifying doesn't make it art; just look at Natural Born Killers for a clear example of that.

BigGiantHead's take on the film, however, I did find interesting, and I may give the film a second look with that idea in mind. Overall, I think Requiem may have started with a good concept, but the execution is rather poor in my mind.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-03-2001, 02:57 PM
Jack Batty Jack Batty is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
How odd that this thread would spring up. I just caught the movie on tape a couple of days ago with another Doper, and we wondered aloud if there were any threads devoted to it.

I think it may be time to have my tinfoil hat re-fitted, or at least for a thourough bug sweep through the crib.

Anyway ... here's my take on the film.

I really wanted to like it going in, having heard so many good things about it. At first I was very bored. It was too slow a build, but as I got into it I realized that was somewhat of a device ... the slow build to utter chaos.
I did enjoy the "MTV type cuts" employed to represent not only shooting up, but also droning in front of the TV. Using similar cuts to represent two mechanically different actions was a great way to juxtapose them, I thought.

As for the messages I received, well obviously there is the wohle "drugs are bad, mkay" angle. But then there's the obsession which leads to any sort of addiction ain't no good either. Another thing I got in a general sense though, is that the ends does not justify the means. I'm trying to think of a better way to put it ... I think it's about "future-tripping". Like BigGiantHead said, the charachters were so obsessed with their dreams, they failed to realize what they were doing to themselves in striving for them. The ends blinded them, thus fucking up their means. Or something like that.

One other thought ... being as this came out relatively at the same time as Traffic did, I was much more affected by Requiem. While Traffic did a good job of showing the "drug trade", they missed the mark horribly on how users are affected. Requiem filled that gap pointedly.
__________________
Caution: Cape does not enable user to fly.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-03-2001, 03:37 PM
elfkin477 elfkin477 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: NH
Posts: 19,509
I loved it. The filming was unusually quirky for a movie, the techiques used are usually only seen in short films (anyone else watch Exposure on Sci-fi?) I'm thinking of buying it on DVD soon.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-03-2001, 04:23 PM
Raziel Raziel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2001
Ok, I feel really bad about this, but as soon as I saw the DVD, I knew I had to buy it. I'm a big Aronofsky fan, and I had heard great things about the movie (not to mention the Clint Mansell soundtrack). Well, I didn't really pay attention to the fact that I picked up the "Edited Version"



DOH!!!


So, what's on the uncut version? I can imagine a couple things right off the top- more shots of the amputation, and more shots of Jennifer Connelly and the other cokeslut doing the "Ass To Ass!!!!" scene. Anything else?


By the way, I couldn't help but laugh at that part....a bunch of riled up businessmen, yelling at the top of thier lungs: "ASS TO ASS!!! ASS TO ASS!!!!"

Great movie though. I hope Aronofsky continues to put out fine products like this and Pi.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-05-2001, 08:32 PM
Mofo Rising Mofo Rising is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
They left the "ass to ass" scene in? I guess it is integral to the final moments of the film, but if anything was to be cut. . . Maybe they severely edited it. Um, the "director's cut" has a bottomless nude from Jennifer Connelly, an extended sex scene with Marlon Wayans and his girlfriend, and a whole lot of male asses.

I don't think they cut any of the amputation, as there wasn't too much to begin with. Besides, that's violence and violence is A-OK with the MPAA.

I'm starting to think Darren Aronofsky isn't the happiest of individuals. I wonder what his Batman is going to be like.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 06-06-2001, 07:31 AM
magdalene magdalene is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
This ain't Mozart's Requiem

Quote:
Originally posted by The Red Menace
....and the shock treatments scene REALLY bothered me. Some people I know would say "You just can't handle it because it's too shocking," (Pun not intended). Maybe so, but it's pretty unnecessary in my book to go as far as Aronofsky chose to in the film (the afformentioned shock treatments, the amputation scene, etc). At times I felt the movie was downright immoral, a term of which I'm very careful about using. Just because something is horrifying doesn't make it art; just look at Natural Born Killers for a clear example of that.

The shock treatments and amputation are in the book, by Hubert Selby, Jr. The book is incredibly depressing, but a GREAT read. I've never read anyone who uses dialect and slang as well as Selby. He puts his characters through hell, but loves them all the way there and back. I haven't seen the film yet, but I believe Selby was involved in the script and that it remains incredibly faithful to the story.

If it's "immoral" you are after, check out Last Exit to Brooklyn, same author.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 06-06-2001, 09:06 AM
Max Torque Max Torque is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Raiderville, TX
Posts: 9,642
Saw the movie last night for the first time. Here's my perspective:

I didn't enjoy it, exactly. I don't think you're supposed to, though; watching that kind of ugliness is supposed to repulse you. Direction was excellent, as was the use of color (nothing red except Mom's dress and hair). The only thing lacking for me, really, was empathy; it was hard for me to feel much about the characters, other than the general sadness for another human being getting kicked in the ass by drug addiction.

It's an ugly movie, but life itself ain't pretty either. Would I recommend it? Only to certain people; it isn't for everyone.

I'd like to conclude by saying that the MPAA rating system is complete bullshit. Thank you.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 06-06-2001, 02:07 PM
CheapBastid CheapBastid is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
A DVDTalk Thread that starts off asking for Easter Eggs on the DVD mutates into an interesting discussion about stealing from Perfect Blue.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 06-06-2001, 08:01 PM
Drastic Drastic is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Just watched this quite recently. Aronofsky kicks ass. Absolutely loved Pi, in the class of films I rented, watched, then immediately went online and ordered (the glory days of late '98 and early '99, when online stores were destroying themselves by selling movies incredibly cheap with stacking coupons...ahhh, I miss them). Requiem confirms for me that Pi was no fluke.

I didn't find the pacing a problem at all; it put me in mind very much of one of those big coin funnels you see in some malls and museums--drop a quarter in the slot, and it begins slowly circling downward, the speed accelerating at a rising rate as it spirals into a fall. Aronofsky has a way with quirky angles and techniques that just works--the split screen usage was surprisingly effective; the one showing Leto and Connelly's (and amen to the "just show her smiling" part, because, damn) characters cuddling on the sofa, one side of the screen showing face, the other the path of caressing touches was just...touching. No empathy problems for me.

The ending velocity was deeply disturbing; Jared Leto unveiling how disgusting the previously small sore on his arm had become made me physically cringe away from the screen. Of course, sticking a needle right into it didn't help that. I found the force-feedings of his character's mother more disturbing than the ECT, though.

Selby co-wrote the screenplay with Aronofsky. How closely involved he was, I dunno, I'll definitely be watching with the commentary track on...later. First my brain has to clear, which may take awhile. He's landed on my to-read list.

I'll also say that the opening menu sequence on the DVD confused the holy heck outta me at first.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 06-06-2001, 08:11 PM
Drastic Drastic is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Huh. I've seen Perfect Blue before, and didn't catch that while watching, but they're absolutely right--the bathtub scream was very much lifted, which is sort of a shame if he never credited it properly.

Then again, I'll actually remember this movie beyond "I've seen it before", which isn't the case with the anime. Varying mileages and all.
Reply With Quote
Reply



Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:34 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@chicagoreader.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Publishers - interested in subscribing to the Straight Dope?
Write to: sdsubscriptions@chicagoreader.com.

Copyright 2013 Sun-Times Media, LLC.