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  #151  
Old 02-28-2015, 12:50 AM
Charlie Wayne is offline
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I recently saw "The Water Diviner" (2014)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3007512

It was directed by Russell Crowe who starred in it as well and I don't think there was a single second in the entire film where his face was not on the screen.

It seems to me that many actors, when given the opportunity to direct, just go nuts and their egos take over everything. I think that is what happened to Crowe on this film.

It was rated incredibly high by IMDB. They gave it 8.0. I wouldn't have given it even 6.0 for several reasons. First, although I tried and tried, I could not find a version that had English subtitles and the dialog for much of the movie was spoken in Turkish. The only subtitles I could find were Korean. That made it incredibly difficult to understand what was going on. I have no idea why it seemed like all the versions of this film had Korean subtitles. I just kind of lost my mind about this. What the Hell does Korean have to do with anything in a movie about Turkey and the First World War? I thought that was just crazy but it was only the beginning of crazy as far as this film went.

In addition to that, there have been several reviews and news articles that were highly critical of this film. Some of them seemed to suggest that Crowe was more interested in feeding his ego than he was in making a good movie and he actually tried to change history in this movie. I was surprised that so many critics seemed incredibly angry with Crowe for that reason. I was angry just because it was so difficult to understand this movie.

It starts with a lengthy scene showing us how Crowe's character could find water in some area of Australia that was very unpopulated. But his ability to find water had nothing to do with the rest of the movie and it seemed to me to be boring as Hell as well. It seemed like Crowe wasted about half an hour educating the audience in the art of Water Divination. But that had nothing at all to do with the rest of the movie.

However, many people seemed to like this movie a whole lot and I am often in the minority opinion when it comes to films. So, maybe you should give it a try and see for yourself. After all, a great many people seemed to love this movie.

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the_water_diviner/

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/rev...-review-755702

http://inewspedia.info/images/The%20...%29%20-%20IMDb

Last edited by Charlie Wayne; 02-28-2015 at 12:53 AM.
  #152  
Old 02-28-2015, 06:27 AM
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My wife and I both went to see "Grand Budapest Hotel". We both liked it very much.

Good for you! It was an exquisite looking film.

Quote:
Originally Posted by racepug
I've become pretty picky about the movies I'll go watch very possibly because I don't feel like plunking $14 down on something that's gonna SUCK so I haven't gone to watch too many movies in recent years. When I do, though, it's usually late in the year when many movies that have Oscar aspirations come out. With that in mind in recent years I've gone to see:
That is only reasonable. I just wish more people felt that way. If they did, we would get much better films.

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Originally Posted by racepug
Skyfall was fine if you like Bond movies but I don't think it was anything special (although it had Javier Bardem playing the villain and he does a fine job of that!).
Javier Bardem is an excellent actor. He just sort of came out of left field and so many of his films have been equivalent to "career-making" films that I felt the need to recommend them.

Anyway, I hope you won't mind if I suggest a few other of his films that I thought were just fabulous.

I first noticed him in, "No Country For Old Men". What a great film that was!
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0477348/...nm_flmg_act_14

Vicky Christina Barcelona was likewise wonderful.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0497465/...nm_flmg_act_12

The Counsellor was real good too although some people might find it too violent.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2193215/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_5
  #153  
Old 03-01-2015, 03:07 PM
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Recently seen:

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water
Pretty good sequel. If you like SpongeBob, you should see it. The trailers make it look like it's all about the CGI superhero versions of the characters, but that's only the last part of the movie.

Swingers
Smartass struggling Nineties actors channel the Rat Pack. Has some good moments.

Anchorman 2
Not as good as the first, but still funny.

Klown
Gave up on this recent Danish comedy after 20 minutes or so. Had been recommended to me, but really not worth it.
  #154  
Old 03-01-2015, 04:19 PM
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Some new, some not-so-new:

The Interview. Very stupid, very not-funny. Do not see it.

Black Dynamite. Hilarious.

Kill Bill, Volume 1. Saw this for the first time last night on Blu-Ray. Awesome movie. Can't wait to see Volume 2.

Tommy. Yea, The Who opera. Saw it for the first time on Friday evening. It was... interesting.
  #155  
Old 03-01-2015, 04:37 PM
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Crafter_Man,

You are in for a real treat. Part 2 of Kill Bill is even better than Part 1.

And that is saying something because Part 1 was really great.
  #156  
Old 03-02-2015, 01:15 PM
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I was extremely happy recently to have discovered a great list of Black and White movies posted in the following thread:

http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/...d.php?t=749865

I posted a list of more than 100 such films and RivkaChaya then posted an even larger list.

There were very few overlapping films and I have watched a few from her list that were new to me and most of them were quite wonderful.

But, unfortunately, not all of them were wonderful and I want to tell you about one of those.

The film, Lifeboat (1944) was directed by Alfred Hitchcock and it was produced after many of his excellent films. But I didn't think it was all that great.

Tallulah Bankhead was outstanding. But the movie didn't really hang together very well. I suppose you have to watch the film for yourself to get a true sense of it. It was rated 7.8 at IMDB and I thought that was very much overrated.

I suppose you have to keep in mind that it was made during wartime. But I'd very much like to hear what some other people think. I kept asking myself what the story was about and I couldn't come up with any answer.
  #157  
Old 03-02-2015, 01:17 PM
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Just saw You're Next last night on Netflix.

I thought it would be a standard mindless slasher flick. I was very pleasantly surprised.
  #158  
Old 03-02-2015, 01:52 PM
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I have seen a few movies over the past couple of weeks:

Atlantis: The Lost Empire

Good, and surprisingly adult and dark for a kids' movie. Only complaint was that he basically just gets the girl by showing up. The Atlanteans literally do nothing as they are being robbed of their precious artifact, and the girl also doesn't fight or anything. It smacks a little bit of White Man's Burden.

The Gate

A really weird 80s demon flick. I mean, weird! I couldn't tell if it was supposed to be serious or funny. Would not recommend.

Zathura

No matter what anyone says, this is JUMANJI IN SPACE! Fun movie, except for the annoying (admittedly realistic) relations between an annoying, pompous older brother, and a whiny little younger brother. It made me happy to be an only child, I can tell you that. But it spends too long on the brothers' relationship and less time on the cool shit happening all around.

Hot Tub Time Machine

A sort of fun nostalgic movie. The only thing about this is the nice twist at the end; instead of learning to accept their place in life, something much better happens! Worth a watch, at least once.
  #159  
Old 03-03-2015, 01:08 PM
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NightCrawler. Jake Gyllenhaal as a newbie, independent, gore-hunting, video stringer for TV news. 95% at RT.

Wow. This is a movie. I've seen all but two of the Oscar noms and this one beats them. Gyllenhaal really gets into playing a super creepy guy. One of the many weird traits is this habit of saying something like "What I want to say to you is ..." followed by a threat of something. As if the preface is intended to soften it when it has the opposite effect. A lot of depth-of-character embedded in the script.

I love Renee Russo in this. (She's also the wife of the director/writer/co-producer. Gilroy won the Screenplay plus Best First Feature awards at the Spirit awards. Nice to see an older guy being considered a "newcomer".) She plays a seriously messed up person as well.

Hence it's up to Kevin Rahm, of all people, to play the voice of reason. Don Draper would be confused.

All these years and I still root for Chet Bill Paxton to get bashed.

A really good movie, but not exactly candy and puffy clouds.
  #160  
Old 03-14-2015, 04:28 PM
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Watching "Raze" on cable right now. It's about some rich people who kidnap 50 women and force them to fight to the death with their bare hands (or their loved ones get murdered). It's torture porn. I think they try to slide around the torture porn label by having it be the victims who do violence to one another. But it's 90 minutes of women being beaten senseless, bloody and painful and freaking evil. It's not at all the stylized violence of kung-fu movies, the blood and pain are the main thing. Do not watch unless you enjoy that sort of thing (i.e., if you liked "Hostel"). I didn't watch all of it, just enough to know there wasn't going to be any kind of hook or trick to justify all the gloried-in beating up of women.
  #161  
Old 03-14-2015, 06:46 PM
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I recently saw "The Overnighters", which many people believe should have been nominated for an Oscar for Best Documentary. On the surface, it's about a Williston, ND pastor who opens up his church to house new arrivals to the oilpatch, but there's a LOT more to that story.

This includes a 20-megaton bomb that he drops just minutes from the end, and that warrants a separate movie in itself. We were discussing the movie on another website, and we all said, "How could we have missed it all along?" but there were so many other things going on, it's easy to overlook.
  #162  
Old 03-14-2015, 06:49 PM
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Spoil-bracket the 20-megaton bomb for us, please.
  #163  
Old 03-14-2015, 11:24 PM
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Spoil-bracket the 20-megaton bomb for us, please.
I'd rather. not. You can, however, find it easily with Google.

Just Google "Jay Reinke" and you'll get quite an eyeful.
  #164  
Old 03-15-2015, 12:42 PM
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Watched Listen Up Philip. Jason Schwartzman, Elisabeth Moss, Jonathan Pryce and Krysten Ritter.

Basically: seriously mean, rotten, mega-misanthropic authors and the completely messed up women in their lives.

It is was hella downer movie. Nobody comes off well. (E.g., why would the women spend anytime around these jerks at all????) Not at all pleasant to watch.

In addition, the production values are nearly non-existent. Lots of unwanted shaky cams. Weird lighting issues. Those black blurs on the edge of the screen keep appearing. At times, there'd be a small zoom in for a few seconds and then back out like somebody bumped something. Very, very amateurish. The audio also had problems with some dialogue to faint too hear well.

I watched because of the actors involved. I like noting family connections. While Jason Schwartzman is the son of Talia Shire and hence part of the Coppola clan, there's another interesting family connection going on. In a small role is Dree Hemingway. Daughter of Mariel, great-granddaughter of Ernest. For her to appear in a movie about messed up authors is fun.

This movie is 84% at RT. This is a huge mistake. It is a crappy movie start to finish.
  #165  
Old 03-19-2015, 10:24 AM
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Recently seen:

Calvary
A dark comedy about an Irish Catholic village priest beset by the sins, doubts and hostility of those around him, and struggling with how to respond to a death threat by a man who was sexually abused in his youth by another priest. Very powerful film, with beautiful views of the Irish coast. Iím surprised Brendan Gleeson, whoís excellent as the priest, didnít get an Oscar nomination out of the role.

The Package
Rewatched this pretty good Cold War political-assassination thriller with BMalion. Gene Hackman is a grizzled Army sergeant escorting a military prisoner, played by a very young-looking Tommy Lee Jones, back to the U.S. from a base in West Germany. He comes to realize after Jones's escape, and with the news that the Soviet leader (unnamed, but he looks an awful lot like Gorbachev) is visiting Chicago, that there's a lot more going on than meets the eye.

Rope
I was really underwhelmed by this 1948 Hitchcock film. Technically interesting, in that it was filmed in just a few long takes, but the acting is really stilted (not Jimmy Stewart's finest moment) and the plot just never grabbed me.

Predestination
I really enjoyed this time travel paradox movie, starring Ethan Hawke and based on a clever Robert Heinlein short story, "--All You Zombies--," with an added terrorism subplot that (mostly) works. Good stuff.

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
Chris Pine is adequate in the title role, with Keira Knightley as his sweetheart; Kenneth Branagh directed the film and also plays their polite but deadly Russian-mobster adversary. Kevin Costner seems almost sedated as Pine's CIA handler. An OK but not great spy movie.
  #166  
Old 03-19-2015, 11:09 AM
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Ummm~ "How to Train Your Dragon 2"
The first one spoiled me with the music and animation
  #167  
Old 03-19-2015, 11:15 AM
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Out of shear boredom, I gave "21 Jump Street" a try, as people seem to think it's hilarious. No, it's not. I detest Jonah Hill, and I detest Rob Riggle, and I detest Chris Parnell. The movie is only mildly amusing in some few parts and otherwise a complete waste of time. The only reason I continued to watch after the opening scenes was because for some reason I did find the "Aroma of Christ Church" to be laugh out loud funny, and hoped it offered some hope for equally funny moments later on.
  #168  
Old 03-19-2015, 10:45 PM
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Ummm~ "How to Train Your Dragon 2"
The first one spoiled me with the music and animation
I'm pretty sure the second one was terrible. At least compared to the first.

Why are sequels generally so bad compared to the original? It's not hard to understand.

So many people in this business work so hard and usually just get crapped on. So when they find themselves in a hit, (this next part is just my guess), they will do anything to get a bunch more money so they can finish paying off their mortgage or whatever else they need that money for.

But like I say, that is just my guess.

So, these people, when given the opportunity to make a second movie and get a whole bunch of money for doing it, they will just be too happy to snap it up. I know I would.

Here is how I would feel about it:

I have worked for 20 years in this business and finally had a hit last year where I made $100K. I bought a nice home for my self and my wife and now these people are offering me $200K to make a second movie.

If I could get $200K, then I could pay of my mortgage and I would own my home outright. I could also have some great financial security and my wife and kids would never have to worry again about money.

So ... Damn Straight! Give me the money. Who cares about the quality of the movie?

I just want the money. Money! Money! Money! Money! Money!

Oh Yeah! It's Money. It's my home free and clear. It's security for my wife.

Anyway. That is just my guess. That is how I would feel about it. I really can't tell how they would feel about it.

At this point, I'm guesssing the best thing to do would be to ask you. How would you feel about it?
  #169  
Old 03-19-2015, 10:47 PM
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Ummm~ "How to Train Your Dragon 2"
The first one spoiled me with the music and animation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorene89095 View Post
Ummm~ "How to Train Your Dragon 2"
The first one spoiled me with the music and animation
I saw the second one and I thought it was terrible. At least compared to the first.

Why are sequels generally so bad compared to the original? It's not hard to understand. Although I'm just guessing. Let me tell you my guess?

So many people in this business work so hard and usually just get crapped on. So when they find themselves in a hit, (this next part is just my guess), they will do anything to get a bunch more money so they can finish paying off their mortgage or whatever else they need that money for.

But like I say, that is just my guess.

So, these people, when given the opportunity to make a second movie and get a whole bunch of money for doing it, they will just be too happy to snap it up. I know I would.

Here is how I would feel about it:

I have worked for 20 years in this business and finally had a hit last year where I made $400K. I bought a nice home for myself and my wife (albeit in a kind of crappy neighborhood) and now these people are offering me $800K to make a second movie.

If I could get $800K, then I could pay of my mortgage and I would own my home outright. I could also have some great financial security and my wife and kids would never have to worry again about money.

So ... Damn Straight! Give me the money. Who cares about the quality of the movie?

I just want the money. Money! Money! Money! Money! Money!

Oh Yeah! It's Money. It's my home free and clear. It's security for my wife.

Anyway. That is just my guess. That is how I would feel about it. I really can't tell how they would feel about it.

At this point, I'm guesssing the best thing to do would be to ask you. How would you feel about it?

Last edited by Charlie Wayne; 03-19-2015 at 10:50 PM.
  #170  
Old 03-20-2015, 06:55 AM
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Or it could just be you, since Dragon 2 was nominated for an Academy Award and a slew of other awards. It won the Golden Globe, the Annie, the Producers Guild, the BAFTA, the NBR and a bunch of Critics awards.
  #171  
Old 03-20-2015, 08:10 AM
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Or it could just be you, since Dragon 2 was nominated for an Academy Award and a slew of other awards. It won the Golden Globe, the Annie, the Producers Guild, the BAFTA, the NBR and a bunch of Critics awards.
Oh my gosh! Now you've gone and done it.

I feel reprimanded once again for screwing up the lesson associated with the old motto,

"Whenever you make an assumption, you always wind up making an Ass out of you and me!'

It's so true and I just cannot understand how or why I keep losing it. I always screw it up and even though I know better, I stil bulldoze ahead and make that doggone assumption and then I have to eat crow or maybe that is "I have to eat shit"?

Oh dear. I can just be such a dork! How can I ever learn this lesson once and for all and not fuck it up over and over again?
  #172  
Old 03-20-2015, 08:45 AM
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I'm in the minority also. I loved How To Train Your Dragon. Saw it in the theatre twice, own the blu-ray, and then bought the 3-D blu-ray.
Saw How To Train Your Dragon 2 in the theatre once and never really bothered to see it again. Seemed like they went to the grab bag of "generic plots for sequels" and threw something together.
  #173  
Old 03-20-2015, 10:59 AM
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I'm in the middle of Big Ass Spider (2013)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1830713

I'm very disappointed to see that it was rated 5.3 on IMDB.

This movie is very clearly higher than 7.0. It is a great film and a lot of fun. Really!

A whole lot of fun. A very smart movie. I like it a lot.

I suppose that other people could very well argue that it's not as good as it could be or should be.

But ... WTF? You got a huge MF spider that can climb up city sky scrapers and bite the shit out of most anyone and anything. What more could you want?

But, you get a whole lot more than that. So, FFS! Get real with the ratings. Stupid Dumbasses!
  #174  
Old 03-20-2015, 01:37 PM
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OK. I am now down to the last 15 minutes of "Big Ass Spider" (2013) and I just can't believe how truly excellent this movie is.

"Big Ass Spider" (2013)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1830713/

I'm comparing it to "It Came From Beneath The Sea" (1955)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0048215/

Check out the discussion of older horror movies from the 1950s in this thread:

http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/...=712136&page=2

It's really quite amazing to me how horror movies have changed from 1955 to 2015. That is 60 years. Oh my gosh!

As a kid of 6 or 7, I was really terrified of that octopus creature in "It Came From Beneath The Sea" (1955).

But as a kid today, I'm sure I'd be equally terrified of this Big Ass Spider. But I'd like to ask just what you all would think.

Do you think you would be just as terrified of the big ass spider in 2015 as you would of the creature that came from beneath the sea in 1955?

There is a huge gap between these two movies. OMG! 60 years!

But check these posts in the thread about Big Ass Spider: #196, #198, #202,

You will get a real perspective on the way that kids would scream in horror back in 1955 at horror movies.

Last edited by Charlie Wayne; 03-20-2015 at 01:40 PM.
  #175  
Old 03-20-2015, 05:23 PM
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Sorry. It wasn't clear what thread I was suggesting you check out the discussion of older horror movies from the 1950s. It was this one:

http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/...=712136&page=2

I suggested you look at the three posts: #196, #198 and #202. They all discuss that old movie and just how terrifying it was to kids.
  #176  
Old 03-22-2015, 11:35 AM
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"Black Comedy"

About that term. To me, to be a black comedy, it has to be, well, you know, funny. But I'm on an anti-roll of alleged black comedies that aren't funny at all.

Don't get me wrong. I like black comedies. Some of my best friends are black comedies (Fargo: movie and series). But that's because they contain actual humor.

We got burned a while back with Cheap Thrills. Nasty, brutal, ugly film. Not at all funny.

So when I saw The Voices was coming out on video, described as a black comedy, I was wary. Good cast. Ryan Reynolds (okay, may not so good), Anna Kendrick, Gemma Arterton, and Jacki Weaver plus a dog and a cat.

Reynolds is a seriously messed up dude whose afflication is named on the box. Quite a bit of horror and gore.

I was careful. Read critics and audience reviews. Fairly clearly described by several as funny.

No. It. Is. Not.

Especially based on the closing credits, I think the people who made it thought it was supposed to be funny. But it fails at that miserably.

Note: If you want a pure splat-fest, psychologically nasty, downer of a movie. Then this is an okay movie in that department. But don't think of it as quirky or funny or anything.

Some interesting insights into the troubled minds of someone like Reynold's character.

I'm getting concerned about Kendrick. She hasn't made a really good movie that I've seen since the days of Up In The Air and 50/50. She's also doing a dreaded sequel to that awful Pitch Perfect, etc. Shame if she doesn't get back into making better films.

Jacki Weaver, bless her heart, isn't up to par with her acting in this film. She doesn't seem to be doing well since her return to films several years back. Cf. Silver Linings Playbook.

Gemma Arterton, with her accent, mien, etc., just doesn't fit in.

Ryan Reynolds: Did Green Lantern kill his career or was it already dead?

Last edited by ftg; 03-22-2015 at 11:36 AM.
  #177  
Old 03-24-2015, 03:44 PM
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Just watched "That Girl That Was In That Thing." It's billed as a documentary about actresses and what they have to go through to succeed. I was hoping from the cable guide precis that it would examine all kinds of actresses including actresses who have been totally unsuccessful economically.

Instead I got a bitchfest by a group of moderately to very successful network TV actresses bitching about how hard their lives were. It was all very predictable and well known stuff about low pay, limited opportunities and demeaning roles among those roles that are available (though most of THESE actresses were recognizable and had had some fairly good long-running roles in various series). I'm not saying the problems the actresses cited do not exist, just that it's all VERY familiar ground and the insights into that ground is also VERY familiar.

I have no idea why anyone who is not related to or close friends with these actresses would want to watch the film. I have to wonder what the people who made it were thinking.

Last edited by Evil Captor; 03-24-2015 at 03:47 PM.
  #178  
Old 03-24-2015, 10:07 PM
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Just watched "That Girl That Was In That Thing."
I am guessing you meant: That Gal... Who Was in That Thing, the sequel to That Guy... Who Was in That Thing.
  #179  
Old 03-24-2015, 11:44 PM
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Okay, took the 4 1/2 and 2 1/2 year old grandsons to see the Boxtrolls. Both the boys loved the movie and actually watched the entire thing. I thought they did a good job on the movie too.
Just saw this. I loved the book it was based on (Here Be Monsters!) and though the story was completely changed, I loved the movie, too. Laika does it again.

Great to hear all the lovely voice acting, too.
  #180  
Old 03-25-2015, 01:15 AM
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"Black Comedy"

About that term. To me, to be a black comedy, it has to be, well, you know, funny. But I'm on an anti-roll of alleged black comedies that aren't funny at all.

<snip>
So many questions as to why such an awful movie was ever made and why it ever got funded. So pointless to try to answer those questions and a real waste of time to even discuss them. Instead, I will just apologize to everyone in this thread for wasting your time and also say that I was careful not to waste very much of it.

Last edited by Charlie Wayne; 03-25-2015 at 01:17 AM.
  #181  
Old 03-29-2015, 10:51 PM
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Recently seen at home on DVD:

About Time
Quirky British romance/time travel comedy. If you liked Love Actually or Four Weddings and A Funeral, you'll like this, despite some gaping plot holes.

The Grand Budapest Hotel
Rewatched this Wes Anderson masterpiece - a funny, wry, bittersweet Ruritanian tribute to high society between the wars. Ralph Fiennes really should have gotten an Oscar as a nitpicky concierge with a thing for much older women; he reveals an amazing comic talent. The rest of the all-star cast are also excellent. Two thumbs 'way up.

I also went to a local film festival recently and saw a lot of movies in a relatively short time:

Gett
A Israeli courtroom drama about an Orthodox Jewish divorce trial. Mostly gripping, but a bit tedious by the end.

In Country
Documentary about Vietnam War vets, and younger wannabes, who do weekend Vietnam War reenactments out in the woods of Oregon. Offbeat but interesting.

Who Am I - No System is Safe
A brand-new German cyberthriller about hackers, organized crime and the Europol cops trying to stop them. Some great twists and turns, with echoes of both The Matrix and The Usual Suspects.

Silenced
Documentary about recent prosecutions under the WWI-era Espionage Act against U.S. government whistleblowers. Well worth a look.

The Visit
What would we really do if aliens landed on Earth? In this documentary, NASA scientists, United Nations officials, a priest and former top British government officials discuss the scientific, public relations, military and religious implications of first contact. Very intriguing movie.

I Am Big Bird: The Carroll Spinney Story
Well-crafted, affectionate, heartwarming documentary about the actor who has, for almost 50 years now, played the beloved Sesame Street character. I learned a lot and really enjoyed the film.
  #182  
Old 03-30-2015, 03:39 PM
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I bit the bullet and watched Guardians of the Galaxy. 91% at RT. Figured about 20% of that was genre inflation.

Holy crap, that was bad. Maybe 30 minutes of "story" filled out to 2 hours with a ridiculous amount of incoherent, overkill, "action" sequences. And even a lot of that half hour had a bunch of backstory exposition.

What is the matter with the critics for this movie? No way should so many give this a pass. So what if a lot of things blow up just for the sake of blowing things up?

I just couldn't suspend my disbelief about the "immortality" of the heroes. Good grief, the death technology in this universe is astonishing. They have a rock that does <very bad things>. And somehow no one can properly use any of dozens of super dangerous weapons shown to kill these losers?

Did they specifically ask Glenn Close to do the worst acting of her career?

OTOH, it did have Brandi Svenning's father and a guy who invented a portable computer.
  #183  
Old 03-30-2015, 03:59 PM
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Catwoman. It was as awful as I'd heard.
  #184  
Old 03-30-2015, 10:42 PM
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Never saw Catwoman, but I, too, was underwhelmed by Guardians of the Galaxy.
  #185  
Old 04-01-2015, 10:09 AM
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Eurgh, Cheap Thrills was the polar opposite of a good black comedy. Sickening, ugly, no finesse.

Which is odd because I really enjoyed Starred Up which is also very violent, seems to want to fit more swear words into a movie than ever before, and the characters are all deeply flawed. But it had a lot of humanity and a touch of humour, and some great acting. Even as a Londoner, though, I needed the subtitles for some of the dialogue.

The final note is '71, about 'The Troubles' in Northern Ireland; I thought it was very sensitively done, again with humanity and some truth, not unlike Calvary. Also very good acting and script.
  #186  
Old 04-01-2015, 12:23 PM
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Watched "Eight Million Ways to Die In The West" on cable. There were some laughs in the first 40 minutes or so, though some of it was just bottom-of-the-barrel gross-out humor. But the idea of having a character with fully developed modern sensibilities in the Old West being appalled at the gunfights and carrying-on was a nice conceit. However, after about half an hour it started to run out of funny and the last 50 minutes or so of the movie kinda dragged, just a standard Western theme. The gross humor was still there, but it was nothing but disgusting after the initial shock. So, watch the first half hour, ignore the rest. I think with some sharper observation and a greater willingness to bend Western tropes this could have been a very funny movie. Sort of like "Blazing Saddles" only more idiocractic.

Last edited by Evil Captor; 04-01-2015 at 12:24 PM.
  #187  
Old 04-01-2015, 12:58 PM
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"It Follows" is a good horror movie. Great atmosphere, generally no cheap scares jumping out at you, mysterious monster, and a really memorable soundtrack
  #188  
Old 04-08-2015, 10:23 AM
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Saw "The Heat." Sandra Bulloch and Melissa McCarthy do an excellent job of trying to cover up the fact that "The Heat" is a just another run of the mill buddy cop movie. Cliches abound. Bulloch is an uptight, businesslike FBI agent and McCarthy is a tough, street-smart cop who plays by her own rules. They have to learn to work together and respect one another as they track down seriously evil serial killer on the mean streets of Boston.

McCarthy does a great job here, bringing life to her role, and Bulloch plays pretty much the same character she developed in "Miss Congeniality." But the writing is kind of dumb and crude. Oftentimes I will see a review of movie that says, "The lead actors do their best but the script gives them little or nothing to work with." This movie should be considered the perfect embodiment of that phrase.
  #189  
Old 04-11-2015, 01:05 PM
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Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.

Saw it last night.

If it had been made without CGI, it would simply be a bad movie. But it's loaded with CGI, making it nearly unwatchable.
  #190  
Old 04-12-2015, 08:57 AM
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My wife just finished reading The Third Man, by Graham Greene, so we thought we'd watch the old Joseph Cotton/Orson Welles film noir B&W movie, shot partly on location in post-war Vienna. It holds up pretty well and has a strong supporting cast. The camera work is outstanding.
  #191  
Old 04-13-2015, 03:25 PM
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I watched Jack Reacher out of sheer boredom. What a relentless piece of shit that was. Ham-fisted direction and editing, scenery chewing by all concerned, and Rosamund Pike's presence in the movie industry is a total mystery to me.
  #192  
Old 04-22-2015, 12:12 PM
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Our most recent MotW was Jon Stewart's Rosewater. We figured we pretty much had to see it eventually. Not really looking forward to it based on audience (vs. critic) reviews.

Yeah, it was okay for the most part. Not really "all that".

The opening sequences were a muddle. Too much "time travel" with too little context to help figure things out. Also, Stewart really needed to give a better context of who-was-who and who-they-were-friends/enemies with among the Iranian political figures. I thought I was up-to-date on this and I still found it confusing.

Shohreh Aghdashloo is a tremendously strong actress. She just dominated each scene she was in. And since the others in those scene's weren't playing at her level, it took me out of the movie. One of those cases where a lesser actor would have been better.

The title is just plain A Bad Idea. The rosewater is such a tiny element of the story, it's barely worth mentioning let alone making it the title.

-------------

Now: for the bad (?) movie of the week: Home Sweet Hell. (Originally North of Hell.) Katherine Heigl and Patrick Wilson as the perfect dysfunctional couple facing some really bad things (and people).

The release history of this movie warns you off: First released on VOD Feb. 3, then supposedly released in theaters March 13, then already on disc by April 7.

I say "supposedly" because I find no record of box office at BoxOfficeMojo or similar. I'm thinking it only had a token release to satisfy contracts.

Which brings up another infamous Heigl movie: Zyzzyx Rd. Made $30 (not $30 million, or thousand. Just $30.) Some of which was refunded. I've seen this. It is indeed an unbelievably terrible movie. ("Whew, xxx is dead, let's move on." "No, xxx isn't dead, look out!" repeated over and over.)

But Home Sweet Hell is actually an almost okay movie. Not great, but nowhere as bad as Zyzzyx Rd. Generally well made and acted. The secondary actors are pretty good. It even has Kevin McKidd, also from Grey's Anatomy, in a very small role just goofing around with accents. (You'd think only Scottish, but you'd be wrong.)

For some reason I have a problem with Patrick Wilson. He just doesn't seem to be that good to me, so that drags the movie down IMHO.

Heigl plays a super-sweet Miss Perfect on the outside, incredibly twisted and nasty on the inside person. Let's just leave that at that with a minimum of snark.

The ending is only halfway satisfying.

Heigl's husband did the soundtrack. Just a minimal job. And the main theme is incredibly simple pop/earworm crap.

It's 6%, 1 for 18, at RT. But I think it should rate higher, like in the 30s or 40s. And it should have gotten a modest release.

Note that Heigl has 2 other completed movies sitting on the shelf with no push to get them out in theaters.

Last edited by ftg; 04-22-2015 at 12:14 PM.
  #193  
Old 04-23-2015, 04:12 PM
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Watched the first 15 minutes of "Tammy" and quit. The characters were just too stupid and annoying. I did not want my imagined plot where they are both dumped into a river and drown 15 minutes in, to be messed over by the real plot.
  #194  
Old 04-23-2015, 09:36 PM
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I was careful. Read critics and audience reviews. Fairly clearly described by several as funny.

No. It. Is. Not.

Especially based on the closing credits, I think the people who made it thought it was supposed to be funny. But it fails at that miserably.
Oh gosh, I REALLY liked this movie! Yes, it was gory and disturbing, but I did think it had some truly funny moments. One of my recent favorites.

Finally caught up with Jupiter Ascending at the cheap show. Glad I didn't pay full price, it was beautiful but really didn't make much sense, even with the suspension of disbelief I agree to uphold when seeing a sci-fi movie. Don't need to see this one again.

Went to Mr X earlier this week and it was FUN. The BF and I argued over whether this is a true "Bollywood" movie, and as I'm not at all familiar with the genre I didn't have much evidence to prove that it was. The reviews and press all call it one, so that's what I'm going on.

Truly silly plot, laughable special effects, and some pretty glaring plot holes, but I still enjoyed the hell out of it.

Last edited by Nikki Tikki Tavi; 04-23-2015 at 09:36 PM.
  #195  
Old 04-24-2015, 04:09 AM
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The Water Diviner: Seemingly loved by Australians and Turkish people, it didn't strike me as anything special.

The Voices: As a black comedy is was more funny weird than funny 'ha ha'. A good performance by Reynolds as a very, very screwed-up guy.

Jim: Is All By My Side: Actually better than I'd expected but too short. Also not being able to include any of his songs put a dampener on it.

Force Majeure; Top Five; A Most Violent Year; Love, Rosie: None of them lived up to their billing.
  #196  
Old 04-25-2015, 03:32 PM
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Because I was in a WTF mood last night, watched She-Devil with Meryl Streep, Rosanne Barr, and Ed Begley Jr (whatever happened to him?)

Not very many movies that you get to see Streep outacted, but in this one, I think her decision to play her character so flamboyantly and one-dimensional hurt the movie. Barr was well-cast as the frumpy housewife who gets her revenge, while Begley was just a doofus.

Not a bad movie if you want that late-80s vibe, need to catch up on your lesser Meryl Streep movies, or am going through a "revenge is best served hot" marathon, but otherwise... meh. I'll give it a 6 out of 10 - and that's a generous 6.

Last edited by JohnT; 04-25-2015 at 03:35 PM.
  #197  
Old 04-26-2015, 12:53 PM
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Because I was in a WTF mood last night, watched She-Devil with Meryl Streep, Rosanne Barr, and Ed Begley Jr (whatever happened to him?)
Seriously? Begley just keeps popping up all over the place. E.g., several episodes of Portlandia and a host of other shows.

-----

Our MotW was Night Moves. No, not that one, this one. With Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning and Peter Sarsgaard. Some eco-nuts have a problem with a dam in Oregon. Non-hilarity ensues.

Reasonably okay movie, if over long at 1:53. Eisenberg played his character a bit too toned down. Fanning was a miscast. Sarsgaard was very good. Two of my favorite lesser actors: James Le Gros and Matt Malloy had unfortunately quite small roles. And several other interesting supporting actors. Basically it's a three person movie.

But it really fell apart near the end:

SPOILER:
Eisenberg needs to leave. He has to get out of town now. But he hangs around and more Bad Stuff happens. Sheesh. When it's time to go, GO!
  #198  
Old 04-26-2015, 01:20 PM
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Eh, not much of a TV watcher.
  #199  
Old 04-26-2015, 04:15 PM
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The Babadook: another total waste of time.
  #200  
Old 04-26-2015, 06:07 PM
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Movies you've seen recently


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The Babadook: another total waste of time.

Oh my God, I so disagree. It didn't scare me (sadly, almost nothing does), but it was one of the most interesting "horror" movies I'd seen in forever. Very moving until it fudged up the ending a bit. Can't wait to own it.

Last edited by joyfool; 04-26-2015 at 06:08 PM.
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