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  #201  
Old 04-26-2015, 07:33 PM
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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.
I agree. It was very well done with good performances, especially by the actor playing the son.
  #202  
Old 04-26-2015, 07:35 PM
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double post

Last edited by Accidental Martyr; 04-26-2015 at 07:37 PM.
  #203  
Old 04-26-2015, 07:41 PM
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Two of my favorite lesser actors: James Le Gros and Matt Malloy had unfortunately quite small roles.
James Le Gros is great in Living in Oblivion.
  #204  
Old 04-27-2015, 02:13 AM
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I wish to tell you about one of the most bizarre movie going experiences I've ever had.

There is a movie called, "The Marine 4: Moving Target".

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3528666/

I believe it was produced by some man who is a wrestler and who owns some large corporation that now produces movies.

Why was it so bizarre? Well, this movie had no plot. It consisted of 90 minutes of two groups of people shooting at each other with assault rifles while running through the woods.

The equipment they used was very low budget. Most films of this kind use jet airplanes but this film used propeller driven airplanes. Most films of this kind used fancy expensive weapons. But, this film just used one kind of inexpensive assault rifle and one kind of handgun. All in all, it was a real cheap-o film and I could not understand who would have made such a film or why and how they ever figured it would have made any kind of profit.

In any event, I just found the entire experience to be extremely bizarre and vacuous. I went away from this experience feeling empty and strangely ... I don't know what to say.

Would any of you have any idea what the Heck was going on with this POS?
  #205  
Old 04-27-2015, 02:40 AM
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Ex Machina Loved it. The ending is just ... yeah.
  #206  
Old 04-29-2015, 06:36 PM
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I recently watched two horror comedies.

Thumbs down for My Name Is Bruce. Famous cult and B-Movie actor Bruce Campbell in a film where the gimmick is he is playing himself. So instead of playing Ashley J Williams (a cowardly jerk), he plays Bruce Campbell (who is a cowardly jerk.)

No real horrific content (gore), no nudity and only a couple of laughs. Rabid Bruce fans will watch it for the references to Evil Dead. Any real film fans would be strongly recommended to watch his infinitely superior Bubba Ho-Tep where, for once, Bruce actually does some fine, straight acting albeit within the context of a comedy horror film.

Thumbs up for SexyKiller (Morirás por ella) Here's a film I had never heard of and my first thought after watching was "Why hasn't this been remade?" Then you realise there's no point to remaking it. It's perfect as it is.

A sexy female student is an utterly immoral serial killer murdering anyone who gives her even the flimsiest reason to. Being a sexy girl she is never considered as a suspect. A comedic misunderstanding has her dating the pathologist trying to solve the murders. Meanwhile the pathologist is also working on a process to recover the final memories of all the dead victims. Which accidentally creates a horde of flesh eating zombies.

Packed with references to many other films. Breaks the fourth wall. There's a musical sequence chucked in plus the whole thing is filmed in the bright colours and high contrast of a pop video. It's gory, endlessly funny and if it lacks originality it compensates by moving so fast its never boring. Spanish with subtitles.

TCMF-2L
  #207  
Old 04-29-2015, 06:46 PM
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Red Army - back in January (or maybe February). A show about what life was like for members of the Red Army ice hockey team. Quite good.

Ex Machina - Just this last Sunday. As one of my co-workers put it: "Creepy and intelligent."
  #208  
Old 04-29-2015, 07:10 PM
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Interstellar: three hours of really bad science and McConaughey mumbling his lines. Honestly, if you're going to talk about physics, try to be at least slightly plausible and not say things that a bright 8th grader knows is bunk. "We'll fire the engines and escape the black hole's gravity! We need to get rid of some weight first!" That's like a gnat deciding to avoid being sucked into a jet engine by flapping its wings harder and shedding that pesky dust mote.
  #209  
Old 04-30-2015, 10:29 AM
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Recently watched "Sorceress" (the 1982 film of that name) on Youtube. This is one of the goofiest Big Hair Big Breasts sword & sorcery films ever! It's like it was written for children (or by children) but eh, let's throw some sex & nudity in while we're at it, but do it really childishly. Loved the climactic battle scene with the sneering lion dragon and the flashy blue light and the zombie warriors fighting the sisters, the most unconvincing swordfighters ever. The acting is as wooden as the swords in this movie, and believe me, these actors are not people you want running aroundi with sharp things in their hands. If only MST3K did R rated stuff ... this would have been perfect fodder for them.
  #210  
Old 05-03-2015, 01:10 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.
I am so surprised by this post because I saw:

The Water Diviner & A Most Violent Year and at the time I watched them, I thought I should post about them to warn people off. But then I thought, "No one will ever agree with me on these."

So pleased to find someone who is not afraid to speak a simple truth like, "The Emperor is not wearing any clothes!"

Well done!
  #211  
Old 05-03-2015, 09:45 AM
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Well, no one would want to watch the silent movie.

However, I did find "We're the Millers" very funny (Couple of years old now, but Jennifer Aniston as a stripper?)

Also "What We Did on Our Holiday" is a great movie if you don't want something too challenging.
  #212  
Old 05-04-2015, 09:18 AM
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Our MotW was Boy Meets Girl. A non-standard love story, to say the least.

This was a very good movie for the most part. Along the lines of Chasing Amy (one of my faves.) Lots of really good, funny, weird dialog scenes in the first hour. Unfortunately, due to the nature of the story arc, the last half hour had a lot less of this, but I can see that the mood had to shift.

Some really good acting. I was surprised in looking up the actors on IMDb how many of them had long lists of credits. Usually for small films like this many of the actors are "locally sourced" or some such and have few to no other credits.

E.g., the male lead, Michael Welch (who is for some reason listed last at IMDb), goes all the way back to a 1998 Frasier episode where he played a young Niles Crane in a flashback. He also did the voice of Pinocchio in some Disney stuff.

(OTOH, he's a lot closer to 30 than his character's age of 21 and it shows.)

One exception in experience is the star herself: Michelle Hendley. First role and so far only released film. Absolutely amazing.

Both did a fine job with subtle Southern accents. OTOH, the 2nd female lead really overdid it. Her character, raised the way she was, wouldn't have had such a thick accent.

Nice story, generally well done. The writer/director has some experience but he isn't quite there in terms of polish.

I recommend it strongly if you like the more off beat type of tales.
  #213  
Old 05-09-2015, 03:29 AM
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I just watched The Grapes of Wrath.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0032551

This may be old news to most of you but I've been anticipating watching this film since it is almost universally touted as one of the best American films ever.

I was so disappointed. There was just so little about it that I found at all interesting. I suppose that to many people it may have been a good history lesson about the tragedy of the dust bowl or at least that period. But I just found it to be boring, boring, boring.
  #214  
Old 05-10-2015, 12:22 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.
Yes! Great zither theme, too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f8HQEDhxQvE

I've recently seen:

Avengers: Age of Ultron
Very good mix of action, jokes and quiet character moments; a worthy addition to the fast-growing onscreen Marvel Universe. I'd give it a solid A.

The 39 Steps
Hitchcock's last British movie before going to Hollywood. A great pre-WWII B&W thriller about an innocent man on the run, going from the crowded streets of London to the moors of Scotland and back again.

Kingsman
Fun, clever, action-packed spy spoof. Not perfect, but worth a look.

Safe House
Denzel Washington is a turncoat CIA agent and Ryan Reynolds is the scared young agent who has to bring him in from a South African city, even as a mysterious crew of assassins is trying to kill them both. I saw the twist coming a mile away, but enjoyed it just the same.
  #215  
Old 05-10-2015, 08:56 AM
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I recently mostly watched Gone With the Wind. (I have seen it now and won't do it again.) The scene with the dress made from the drapes cracked me up. I couldn't help remembering Carol Burnet in her skit with the curtain rod.
  #216  
Old 05-14-2015, 04:00 PM
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We recently watched a couple of classics on Netflix discs.

Sorry, Wrong Number . My God, how annoying can a woman be? 10 minutes in and I'm actually rooting for the killer.

Pillow Talk
What the hell??? The guy is an asshole. He's a lying, conniving dick who has no qualms at all about screwing over women AND his 'best friend'. Just because he decides he wants to marry you.....HE'S STILL A LYING, CONNIVING ASSHOLE!!! He's the kind of guy who will cheat on the bride during the wedding reception. And dammit, she deserves the heartache that's coming for being so stupid.

We saw It Follows......a pretty good horror flick with a morally ambiguous ending.

Last edited by Typo Negative; 05-14-2015 at 04:02 PM.
  #217  
Old 05-14-2015, 04:18 PM
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Avengers: Age of Ultron. Enjoyed it, but there really were too many characters on the screen for them all to get a fair share (most notably Thor).
  #218  
Old 05-14-2015, 05:16 PM
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I saw a documentary "Breaking the Maya Code", which was awesome.

It was an account of the ultimately successful, decades-long attempt to decipher the Mayan hieroglyphic language.

The various means used to do so (and it was done in little bits and stages) were ingenious; the cast of characters, amazingly eccentric.

For example: one of the key figures in the decipherment was a fellow who had no relationship to things Maya at all - he was a Soviet soldier in WW2, who happened to come accross, in the flaming wreckage of Berlin, a copy of the existing Mayan codices -- and became obsessed with figuring out how to read them. He had considerable success - but was ignored because he was, after all, a commie Russian in Stalin's Soviet Union in the 1950s - hardly a hotbed of Mayan studies (a fact that was, as explained in the show, actually an advantage - as the giants in Mayan studies at the time were both dead wrong and highly influential).

No ancient aliens or mystic crystal skulls were harmed in the making of this film. Or, indeed, mentioned at all.
  #219  
Old 05-15-2015, 06:49 AM
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I am so surprised by this post because I saw:

The Water Diviner & A Most Violent Year and at the time I watched them, I thought I should post about them to warn people off. But then I thought, "No one will ever agree with me on these."

So pleased to find someone who is not afraid to speak a simple truth like, "The Emperor is not wearing any clothes!"

Well done!
Thanks!

Recently I saw Camp X-Ray and found it very touching and engrossing. Two brilliant performances.

The Wedding Ringer A good idea, badly executed. A shame as it's quite original, rather than the remakes Hollywood seems to depend on for BO success.

Downfall Not heard of it but seen the parody clips on Youtube many times. It's certainly a different take on the events, well worth a watch.

Selma I thought it was very well-written, the acting was flawless all of the way through, and another interesting take on past events.

Altman I was hoping for a lot more, considering the 'cast' (who only had one line each. WTH? They got them all into a studio to do one line?)

Grace is Gone A very touching, gentle, sometimes funny story, I admit I welled up at the end. I thought I'd find Cusack annoying but he played out of his comfort zone really well.

Antarctica: A Year On Ice Gorgeous photography, and a hugely interesting topic. As soon as it finished I was online reading about their lives and looking at job ads.
  #220  
Old 05-16-2015, 01:42 PM
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I just saw The Judge with Robert Duvall, Robert Downey Jr. and Billy Bob Thorton.

I very much enjoy all three of these actors. Put them all together in one movie and you might expect something excellent. This movie was superb. I loved it more than any other I've seen in a very long time.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1872194

It was quite long (about 2:30) and that was just fine with me because I loved every minute of it.

It was rated 7.5 on IMDB which I consider laughable. I would give it 8.5 or more without a doubt (considering some of the other movies that are rated at 8.5).
  #221  
Old 05-17-2015, 05:54 PM
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First, the real MotW: Fury with Brad Pitt. (Oh, and that funny guy from Choke in a lesser role.)

Personal note: Due to my late uncle's experience inside Germany as a POW at the end of WWII, I have a keen interest in movies set there and then.

Well filmed, acted, etc. But incredibly formulaic. In fact, it multiplied the formula by 10. I told Mrs. FtG who was going to survive the final battle well before it started. And let me tell you, that last part was full of stupid to the max. Real soldiers, especially German SS soldiers near the end of the war, don't fight remotely like that. Egad.

Kinda worth watching, but not all that.

Now, for reasons I don't even understand, I recently watched two crappy movies just to see what's what.

First up: Killers with Ashton Kutcher and Katherine Heigl. Oh my ....

Kutcher utterly failed to do any halfway decent acting at all. Completely botched the the timing of lines and much more.

So the rest of the cast seemed to just be trying to endure him and finish the movie. Plus they wasted Catherine O'Hara which is a venal sin.

Terrible plot, poorly written. And a whole lot of people ended up dead over a misunderstanding. But ... no regrets. Well, that's real sweet of you.

In short, I was expecting bad and got worse.

Second up: Sex Tape. What a freakin' mess of a movie.

Jason Segel has very limited acting range. You have to carefully cast him. This wasn't a good role for him. He's the Kutcher of this movie. He and Diaz are past their prime for doing this type of movie.

A few secondary good cast members that you wished were the actual stars of the show. Jack Black had a small role that was just a waste. But we're expecting that now, right?

Ended up jumping thru large parts of the movie.

It's a Jake Kasdan film who got off to a really great start with The Zero Effect and has been all downhill since then.
  #222  
Old 05-25-2015, 12:41 PM
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The MotW this week is a thread favorite, The Judge.

Been putting it off. Just watched it because of the cast: Billy Bob, Duvall, Farmiga. RDJ is a negative in my book. And he did indeed drag it down a bit.

This was plot filler overkill and then some. I imagine the writers discussing what to put it:

Writer 1: We could add in A or B or C or ... Z? Which do you think we should throw in?

Writer 2: All of 'em!

Writer 1: But that would make the movie 2 hours and 20 plus minutes long.

Writer 2: Yeah, 2:20, 2:21. Whatever it takes.

Just waaaay too much pointless filler. And yet almost none of it any good Billy Bob back story.

If you haven't seen it, don't waste your time, it's not really worth it.

My own bottom dredging MotW is the latest Lone Ranger. Purely because of Ruth Wilson. She certainly helped get thru parts of it. (And skipped thru large parts of the rest. Especially the over-the-top inane "action" scenes.)

I'm getting real tired of Johnny Depp's weirdo acting stuff. Enough already.

And that wrap around story line. Uh, why?

Note to Stephen Root: Don't make any movie where you have to wear mutton chops. Not just because they look bad on you, but also because it means that it's a bad movie.

Why do Lone Ranger movies require the actor playing the Lone Ranger be a zero?
  #223  
Old 05-25-2015, 01:35 PM
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The MotW this week is a thread favorite, The Judge.
:::
Just waaaay too much pointless filler. And yet almost none of it any good Billy Bob back story.

If you haven't seen it, don't waste your time, it's not really worth it.
I saw it because of Duvall's Academy Award nomination, but was not too impressed. The film seemed somewhat melodramatic and saccharine, like a Hallmark Channel made-for-TV movie. It was not bad, just blah.
  #224  
Old 05-30-2015, 05:58 PM
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Caught "Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning" on cable the other day. It is one of the most pornographic porn films I've ever seen. Of course, its primary porn was violence porn. People are shot, stabbed, kicked, beaten with fists and other weapons almost constantly. Nonstop action, indeed. It also had an unusually high amount of naked woman type porn, as two major scenes are set in a bordello and a strip club. Naturally naked women are shot and beaten in those two venues a lot.

I'm not into violence porn but I couldn't change the channel (I did keep the sound turned off, as much of the dialogue consisted of "GAAAAAH!" and "AAAARGH!"). It was kind of like when I first encountered hentai. I may not have liked everything I saw, but I kept watching because the hentai kept surprising me. I mean, there are a couple of scenes in Day of Reckoning that consist of a minute or so of flashing lights of the sort that I imagine might create epileptic seizures. No image on the screen for most of them, just the flashing light. WTF?

I recommend checking this movie out and forming your own opinion, if you can handle gore (there's a lot of it, very explicit, especially of the heads-blown-off variety). It's a very different film that I suspect kind of snuck into the DVD action movie category, but may belong elsewhere. What that elsewhere is, I'm not sure.
  #225  
Old 06-01-2015, 09:08 AM
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MotW: Results with Guy (I thought I remembered him from something, but now I can't) Pearce, Cobie (isn't that a man's name?) Smulders, Kevin (That Guy #439) Corrigan. Also with Giovanni Ribisi. A film by Andrew Bujalski- the main reason I watched it.

It's kind of hard to describe what it's about. People who are fitness trainers/trainee and their messed up lives.

The best part: A very non-standard, almost trope-free story. For much of it, I was completely unable to predict what happened next. Generally pleasantly surprised by events as they unfold. A rarity in many films.

Some other good stuff: funny lines here and there, nice soundtrack, some good acting.

The not-so good parts: Very slow paced. Long pan shots that seemed to serve no purpose. E.g., from one person just sitting there to another person just sitting there. Needed to be "tighter". Some not-so-good acting. In particular Cobie Smulders couldn't keep up with rest. She was acting a different character than what she was cast as. Pearce's accent also didn't fit. (Not British or New Zealander, I'm going with ... Australian?)

As usual, Anthony Michael Hall played the skinny, geeky, kid.

Note: This movie was released on video in March. It was supposedly released in theaters this past weekend, but I think that was one of those minimal-fullfill-a-contract "releases". 82% at RT. A bit high IMHO but still a sort of decent movie.
  #226  
Old 06-01-2015, 11:25 AM
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We watched American Sniper, only because it was an Oscar nominee for something or other. Can't say I was much impressed with it.
  #227  
Old 06-01-2015, 03:25 PM
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I've wanted to see American Sniper but haven't gotten around to it yet.

Recently seen:

The Guard
Buddy comedy with Brendan Gleeson (is he even capable of not being wonderful in a movie?) as a jaded, offbeat, whore-loving rural Irish beat cop working with a buttoned-down, by-the-book FBI special agent played by Don Cheadle. Dark humor, f-bombs galore, very violent, but a lot of fun.

The Second Death
An 11-minute-long Irish short film of a man trying to drink away his guilty memories. No fewer than three future Game of Thrones stars appear in it. Concise and haunting.

The Thing
Having seen bits and pieces of this 1982 John Carpenter horror/sf flick over the years, I finally sat down and watched the whole thing from start to finish. The sfx are a little dated now, but the mood of isolation, paranoia and futility is still compelling.

The Birth of a Nation
Saw a remastered print of this groundbreaking melodrama. It is quaint, sometimes laughable, to modern eyes, but certainly innovative for its day - and its awful political and social impact cannot be denied. Moviemaking genius applied to the worst possible ends. Here's an interesting article on its centennial this year: http://www.vulture.com/2015/02/why-w...of-movies.html
  #228  
Old 06-02-2015, 01:31 AM
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This film flew under the radar when it came out in February, but I enjoyed the heist drama Black Sea (here's my comic review: http://www.theblabbingbaboon.com/?p=6007 )

And if you like post-apocalyptic stories that take place in Australia (like Mad Max, then I strongly suggest a very little seen intense drama from last year called The Rover. (Here's my comic review for it last year: http://www.theblabbingbaboon.com/?p=5230 )
  #229  
Old 06-04-2015, 09:52 AM
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Run All Night - good acting, a bit formulaic but with some small bits of originality, two old dudes duking it out by a train line...zzzzzzz

Filmage: The Story of the Descendents/All - Before watching this you'll probably ask "Who?", but after you'll say "Err, who?"

Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck - Whatever. It's an authorised bio on Kurt-fucking-Cobain

The Loft - Five smarmy, stereotypical, philandering guys; one beautiful, mysterious, dead blond woman; a story that's been told a million times

Red Army - Interesting documentary, a take on a team of Soviet ice hockey players who cracked America, and a look at those times through the eyes of the players, coaches and others

Spare Parts - True story about a group of four young guys from the wrong side of the border, who take on MiT in a national, underwater robotics competition (no fifth named 'Johnny')

Kingsman: The Secret Service - I thought this was absolutely, bloody hysterical! A bit of a mish-mash of genres, stories and themes; a brutally violent, very British, Spy/Zombie/Army/Action/Crime/Comedy/Mystery. I think a lot of the humour in it will not travel well.

Absolution - Absolutely dreadful, so bad I laughed out loud a few times, but is now among the handful of movies I couldn't finish

You're Not You - very sensitive and affectionate portrayal of a talented pianist, being diagnosed and going through the stages of ALS

Mr. Turner - Dissapointing, unremarkable and unmemorable story of the British painter

'71 - Quite a thrilling, tense night when a British soldier is cut off from his unit in Belfast, and has to choose which local to trust and which not to, just going on his gut feeling and very little previous experience

Focus - Will Smith is a snappy, snazzy, charming, talented.... oh heck - It's Will Smith.

Ex Machina - Breathtaking update on a regular AI tale

Just Before I Go - For a movie about a guy who spends 90% of the running time planning his own suicide, it's actually pretty upbeat and funny

Class of 1984 - Made in 1982, but with a satirical look on the classic 1984, plus mind-bendingly 80s hair, clothes, speech, mannerisms etc.

Wet Hot American Summer - Very inappropriate, awkward and silly. All in all a bit of a laugh
  #230  
Old 06-04-2015, 11:37 AM
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Kingsman: The Secret Service

I agree with you about this movie. I loved it.
  #231  
Old 06-05-2015, 01:42 AM
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Recently caught a film called "The Dramatics" on TV. It's about an actress who accepts a role in a Fifty Shades of Gray-ish softcore porn film and her stoner boyfriend and how they deal with her being in a softcore porn film. It is NOT a porn film, though there are a couple of sex scenes. The film was a revelation to me ... I had no idea that such a topic could be made so dull. Really, it's an incredibly boring film about an interesting topic. Such a waste.
  #232  
Old 06-05-2015, 07:15 AM
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I just watched Nightingale last night. It kept me up until 9:30, which is way past my normal bedtime.

David Oyelowo did an amazing job of acting, which is good since he's essentially the entire cast. It's not a happy movie, but I don't feel like I wasted an hour and a half of my life. I can't quite say I enjoyed it though.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3042800/
  #233  
Old 06-05-2015, 08:53 AM
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Saw Chef the other night, which I'd heard about and been meaning to see in a while. As person who loves both food and my 10 year old son, I adored it.
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Old 06-05-2015, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by not what you'd expect View Post
I just watched Nightingale last night. It kept me up until 9:30, which is way past my normal bedtime.

David Oyelowo did an amazing job of acting, which is good since he's essentially the entire cast. It's not a happy movie, but I don't feel like I wasted an hour and a half of my life. I can't quite say I enjoyed it though.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3042800/
I watched that a few nights ago and had pretty much the same reaction. It's an impressive one-man-show by Oyelowo. I also thought the way the cellphone and webcam footage was mixed in was pretty clever.
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Old 06-05-2015, 04:58 PM
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Watched "Multiplicity" again )
I thought each time you re-watched it, the fun got degraded?
  #236  
Old 06-06-2015, 05:14 PM
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The Comedians (1967): Another oldie Graham Greene-based movie, and Richard Burton/Elizabeth Taylor vehicle, with an ensemble cast. Co-starred Alec Guiness, Peter Ustinov, Paul Ford, Lillian Gish (!), and Roscoe Brown. Also has a very young and nearly unrecognizable James Earl Jones (the voice is the giveaway), a bit part by Cicely Tyson, and Georg Standford Brown, six years before he was on the TV show The Rookies.

A pretty good tale, set in the Papa Doc Duvalier days in Haiti and highlighting the brutality of that regime. Burton is a Welsh hotel owner who is having an affair with the Uruguayan ambassador's wife (Taylor). Filmed in Benin, west Africa, to give it that gritty, impoverished look.
  #237  
Old 06-08-2015, 05:27 PM
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MotW: Inherent Vice. With Joaquin Phoenix and a rather surprising cast of very familiar faces* in smallish roles. Based on the Pynchon novel. Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson.

It started off quite interesting. Some good lines, funny bits, suitably weird, random stuff. Nice background music. Almost Big Lebowski-ish.

But then it kept going and going and going. With an hour to go I was fed up. Just more and more pointless random stuff. Less of the funny/interesting stuff.

By the time it got to the final scene, which of course dragged on forever, I was ready to scream. Just end the movie already! It's over! Music up and out! Now!

Why make a 149 minute movie like this? It gets very confusing. Can't remember all the names and who is connected to who.

One "technique" is that often we don't see a person's face a first. Just a voice. Is that Daniel Stern? Nope, Owen Wilson.

The RT rating of 73% is completely baffling.

(Previous post about this movie in this thread here.)

*Omar comin'.

Last edited by ftg; 06-08-2015 at 05:28 PM.
  #238  
Old 06-10-2015, 12:33 PM
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From February I saw:

The Oscar Nominated Shorts - While "Feast" was very good and did win, my favorite was The Dam Keeper. (my comic: http://www.theblabbingbaboon.com/?p=6044)

Still Alice - Wasn't as depressing as I thought it'd be. It's easy to see why Julianne Moore won Best Actress (my comic: http://www.theblabbingbaboon.com/?p=6054

Kingsman: The Secret Service - The first half of the film is fun with some excellent action scenes, but the second half is too absurd. (my comic: http://www.theblabbingbaboon.com/?p=6060)

By the way, I see about 70-75 films in the theater a year and always draw a comic review on my daily comic strip. I'm always looking for feedback on these comics from other movie goers.
  #239  
Old 06-14-2015, 08:40 AM
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MotW: While We're Young. Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, Adam Driver and Amanda Seyfried.

The older couple befriend the younger couple. Problems ensue.

Stiller is a stuck-in-a-rut documentary maker. Watts is the daughter of a famous documentarian (played by the always wonderfully grumpy Charles Grodin) and the latter's producer. Driver is a wanna-be documentary maker with Seyfried his wife/partner.

There are two parts to the movie: The problems and ethics of documentary making, etc. And the awareness of getting older and not wanting to give up on youth. The latter is the real story. It's what at the heart. The former is merely the framework around which it is told. And, despite taking up a lot of screen time, it nicely doesn't get in the way of the real topic.

It's labeled as a comedy-drama but it's mainly a drama with a few lighter moments. BTW: of the main 4 cast members, Watts doesn't really do the lighter stuff well. The other 3 are great. Should've gone with someone else.

Basically a very decent film. Worth watching. 84% at RT. Slightly higher than I would have predicted.

"That's my bucket."
  #240  
Old 06-15-2015, 07:19 PM
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Kingsman: The Secret Service - The first half of the film is fun with some excellent action scenes, but the second half is too absurd. (my comic: http://www.theblabbingbaboon.com/?p=6060)
Agreed. I could have lived with the latter half as just brain candy, but the totally unnecessary scene where the Scandinavian royal

SPOILER:
offers the hero an opportunity to have sex "in the asshole" really put me off, and I'm no prude.
  #241  
Old 06-20-2015, 10:10 PM
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I just watched Beyond the Reach, let my mom borrow my Redbox copy, and we both liked it a lot. Suspense, strong acting, great locations.
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--George Costanza
  #242  
Old 06-21-2015, 08:50 AM
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This week: Danny Collins (or "Collin" as he is sometimes called in the movie).

Pretty good cast: Al Pacino, Annette Bening, Bobby Cannavale, Jennifer Garner and Christopher Plummer.

Pacino is the title character. An aging once great singer/songwriter now living off his decades old fame. He decides to look up a son he never met and emotions ensue.

Based on reviews I was expecting a decent enough film and it more than delivered. Quite well done for the most part. The biggest problem is Pacino doing the same old Pacino he's been doing the last 20 years. But since he has to pretend to be a pop star, he's forced to change it up at least a little bit.

Lots of good background music, especially by John Lennon. (Which is a key to the movie's story.)

Bening is just amazing.

78% at RT. I'd say that's a reasonable rating.

(Brian Smith, "Zack" from The Big Bang Theory, has now done scenes with Al Pacino and Mayim Bialik! His name is so common that on IMDb he is Brian Smith XXIX.)
  #243  
Old 06-27-2015, 01:11 PM
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I'd agree with the comments about Kingsman, but all in all it was good fun. I'd watch a sequel if it got halfway-decent reviews.

I've recently seen:

Escape from New York
Kurt Russell stars as a Special Forces officer gone bad who has to rescue the President after Air Force One crashes in Manhattan, which in the near future has been turned into a massive prison. Directed by John Carpenter. A silly, low-budget but occasionally entertaining dsytopic adventure.

Nothing Lasts Forever
Unfunny, deservedly obscure B&W comedy about a bus trip to the Moon. Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd both appear (and probably wish they hadn't).

Inside Out
The latest Pixar movie, a bittersweet dramedy about what's really going on inside the head of a teenage girl. Richard Kind has the standout role, as the voice of her imaginary childhood friend. Recommended, but The Incredibles remains my favorite Pixar movie.

Spank the Monkey
Black comedy about a premed student unhappily stuck at home caring for his hot youngish mom, who's broken her leg, one summer. One night they both drink too much, one thing leads to another and they have sex. Not sure I can recommend this movie, although it did have its moments.

St. Vincent
Bill Murray stars as a gambling, lying, thieving, hard-drinking Vietnam vet whose long-buried better qualities are brought out by a little boy living next door. Jaeden Lieberher is outstanding as the kid, Melissa McCarthy plays the boy's harried, hardworking mom, and Naomi Watts is also quite good as a pregnant Russian hooker with (you guessed it) a heart of gold. Despite a major plot hole, I loved this movie. Just the right balance between sweet and bitter.
  #244  
Old 06-27-2015, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elendil's Heir View Post

Spank the Monkey
Black comedy about a premed student unhappily stuck at home caring for his hot youngish mom, who's broken her leg, one summer. One night they both drink too much, one thing leads to another and they have sex. Not sure I can recommend this movie, although it did have its moments.
Minor nitpick, the title is actually Spanking The Monkey. This was the first feature directed by David O. Russell. The subject matter is pretty cringe-inducing and it's a bit tough to watch at times, but it's worth checking out. I saw it when it came out in 1994 and still remember some of my reaction when watching it. If you like Russell's films you should definitely give it a look. The songs on the soundtrack are by Morphine, one of my favorite bands.
  #245  
Old 06-27-2015, 05:08 PM
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Places in the Heart was on the other day. I hadn't seen it, and it was an Oscar nominated film, with a win for Sally Field. I have no idea why it won best picture or best actress, unless the competition was really that poor. Character development was poor, the personal relationships seemed flat, and the story was contrived.
  #246  
Old 06-28-2015, 12:17 AM
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Minor nitpick, the title is actually Spanking The Monkey....
Right you are - thanks.
  #247  
Old 06-28-2015, 03:31 AM
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Insidious 3. Loved the first and second installment. Part 3 is a prequel where Elise is still doubting her capability to talk to spirits.
  #248  
Old 06-28-2015, 12:20 PM
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We watched What We Do in the Shadows for the MotW.

By some of the folks who did Flight Of The Conchords.

A mockumentary about vampires living in New Zealand.

Meh. It was really stretched out. The jokes were few and weak. If it had been a half-hour show, it would have been halfway funny.

I should have known from the "mockumentary" part to avoid it. That schtick is really wearing thin. And in this case, the "documentary crew" had to be huge, prescient and invisible to most people/creatures. Should have done a straightforward film.

OTOH, Taika Waititi as one of the lead vampires is someone to watch. According to IMDb "He is of Maori and European-Jewish descent." Well, that explains that. Guaranteed to be funny right there.

How this got 94% at RT is beyond me.
  #249  
Old 06-28-2015, 03:02 PM
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"The To-Do List" is a raunchy teen comedy starring Aubrey Plaza of "Parks & Recs" as a straightlaced, virginal valedictorian who decides to get her sexy game on as she faces college. Her older sister, who is not straighlaced, virginal or a valedictorian informs her that she's going to have to know all sorts of sexy things before she goes to college. Being a super-organized type she decides to do this by making up a To-Do list of sexual acts to complete over the summer before she goes to college. And rather than get a steady boyfriend to do her experimenting with, she just hits on her geeky male friends for the various things on her list, and the dopey guys at the swimming pool she works at.

I found it fun in a pointless kinda way, with lots of scenes where she surprises the hell out of geeky guys she hangs with by asking them to finger her and such. Lots of awkward sex and teen concerns. There are a lot of stereotyped characters: hot hunky guy the lead is attracted to but can't see her, handsome but not hunky geek guy who is attracted to her, but whom she can't see, that kind of thing. Where the movie may be just a tad subversive is in separating out particular sex acts as achievements rather than personal things just shared between lovers, the typical approach taken by teen movies, if they're approached at all.
  #250  
Old 07-14-2015, 10:52 AM
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The MotW: The Midnight Swim.

Three sisters reunite after the death of their mother. Starring nobody you've heard of. (Unless the actress who played Angela Darmody on Boardwalk Empire counts.)

Lots of rebirth and such references.

Shot in fake documentary style. One of the sisters is supposedly filming it.

Ergo, lots of the usual crap: shaky cam, poor framing, pointlessly long static shots, etc. Plus the usual implausible right-place/right-time stuff. If I had known about this going in, I would not have watched it. I'm really, really sick of this.

Long, drawn out, pointless. Not worth it. I thought 91% at RT would ensure that it wouldn't be all that bad. (Although that's a small number of critics: 11.) I'm getting really disappointed at RT. Not just the numbers, but I've been checking into sample reviews to make sure a movie is not a secret dud. Definitely picked the wrong ones here.

Our MotW the previous week as Inside Out, btw. Review here.
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