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October 27, 2020, 09:58:47 PM
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: Rate The Last Movie You Saw  ( 3322006 )
dave jenkins
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« #19335 : September 27, 2020, 03:55:14 PM »


Nagareru [Flowing] (1956) Mikio Naruse. Boasting the talents of Kuniyo Tanaka, Isuzu Yamada, Hideko Takamine, Haruko Sugimura, Mariko Okada and others (probably the most impressive cast of Japanese actresses ever to appear in one film), this is about the trials and tribulations of women in a failing geisha house, especially those of the owner (Yamada) and her daughter (Takamine). Good performances abound but the most remarkable must be Tanaka's as the housemaid. In fact, other characters frequently remark on the way she handles her duties with grace and unostentatious dignity. She is the still point in the turning household, the equivalent of the enlightened ferryman at the end of Hesse's Sidhartha. The world is flowing (much like the Sumida river we frequently see), and she's going with it.5/5
Another viewing (probably my tenth by now) and I've gotta say this is one of the best Japanese films ever made. It helps that it (almost) faithfully follows a very good novel (according to reports, anyway; there is no published English translation of the book).



Ya measly skunk! A-campin’ on my trail and lettin’ me do the work an’ then shootin’ me in the back. IN THE BACK!
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« #19336 : September 28, 2020, 12:55:44 AM »

A Cure for Wellness (2016) 4/10
I've been intrigued by Verbinski's psychological horror effort since I first so the trailer back in 2016 but had never got to see it until it showed up on the French Netflix. Well, what a disappointment. There are some great shots  and atmosphere in it, especially earlier in the film... although 6 years later they tend to give the film more of a high end commercial/music video feel than anything else. Anyway, the plot progressively becomes ridiculous, never achieves to ties the thematic together and Dane DeHaan looks weird the whole time.
As far as I'm concerned, Rango is still the only good film under Gore Verbinski's belt.

noodles is (undoubtedly) right.

Nah, not really.

The first Pirates of the Depp is very entertaining stuff, the sequels quite less but still ok, and The Ring is a very stylish and scary horror film, much better than the Japanese original. The Ring is a 9/10 for me.

But he is absolutely right about A Cure of Wellness.

« : September 28, 2020, 12:59:30 AM stanton »

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« #19337 : September 28, 2020, 08:06:47 AM »

Well I'm wrong about Cure of Wellness anyway, why the hell did I say "6 years later"? Is it 2022 already?

But Stanton is wrong about The Ring and the first 3 Pirates films. None of them are turds, they have some good stuff. They're far from being good movies though (also you cannot make a good movie with Orlando Bloom in it, that's a fact).

« : September 28, 2020, 08:17:51 AM noodles_leone »

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« #19338 : September 28, 2020, 11:21:51 AM »

(also you cannot make a good movie with Orlando Bloom in it, that's a fact).

So you haven't watched Zulu (J?r?me Salle, 2013) yet, a tough thriller with something to say.

Granted, it is is more or less a French film, but even with your Frenchfilm-phobia you shouldn't have missed that one ...

« : September 28, 2020, 11:27:41 AM stanton »

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« #19339 : September 28, 2020, 11:46:16 AM »

I don't have any interest in Pixar style animation, so I won't comment on Rango, but Verbinski made two good movies (at worst, two interesting movies): Mouse Hunt (1997) and The Ring (2002). Neither is a classic, but Stanton is mostly right (just maybe a little too glowing) about The Ring, and Mouse Hunt is a good throw back to classic comedy. There's a mini video review of Mouse Hunt that sums it up perfectly:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2w191ps1-5M


As for the Pirates movies, I never enjoyed the series and I've only seen the first one in its entirety and it has aged terribly. It's sloppily made if I remember correctly. But it may have some value if you're going to compare it blockbusters of the last 15 years, Marvel movies, etc. But that's not saying much.



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« #19340 : September 28, 2020, 12:21:41 PM »

So you haven't watched Zulu (J?r?me Salle, 2013) yet, a tough thriller with something to say.

Granted, it is is more or less a French film, but even with your Frenchfilm-phobia you shouldn't have missed that one ...

I have seen it, it's quite good and I admit Bloom is aging pretty well. I actually thought of it when I wrote the sentence, and still wrote the sentence, because I hate that guy anyway.

I don't have any interest in Pixar style animation, so I won't comment on Rango, but Verbinski made two good movies (at worst, two interesting movies): Mouse Hunt (1997) and The Ring (2002). Neither is a classic, but Stanton is mostly right (just maybe a little too glowing) about The Ring, and Mouse Hunt is a good throw back to classic comedy. There's a mini video review of Mouse Hunt that sums it up perfectly:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2w191ps1-5M


I haven't seen Mouse Hunt!


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« #19341 : September 28, 2020, 01:10:19 PM »

I haven't seen Mouse Hunt!
I would watch the video essay, it's not long and you'll get a good feel for the movie. I'd only recommend it if you have a fondness for classic comedy/slapstick. But it's definitely a movie that should be respected for its atmosphere, gags and visuals.

Edit: If you like the live action Looney Tunes, Tom and Jerry, et al aspect of Home Alone, you might find this worth watching.

« : September 30, 2020, 04:22:48 PM T.H. »


Claudia, we need you to appear in LOST COMMAND. It's gonna revolutionize the war genre..
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« #19342 : September 29, 2020, 06:26:04 AM »

Tokyo Twilight (1957) 9/10. This has got it all: family strife, an abortion, a mother who once abandoned her children, a police station visit, mahjong, an accidental death (or maybe suicide), lots of smoking and drinking, and finally at the end, an intolerably sad train-platform departure. This is an Ozu film?

In fact it's one of his best (and the closest he ever came to making a noir). A true ensemble piece, it's hard to decide just whose story this is. In fact, Ozu is telling multiple tales at once, a fact he underlines with his mise-en-scene. Locations shift and it is often difficult to know at first where we are or who we should expect to see. Sometimes the camera shows us a scene with several new, unnamed characters before one of the stars is surprisingly revealed. Ozu seems to be playing Where's Waldo with his stars, but there may be a greater purpose. If he were to reveal his lead actor too quickly viewers would focus on her, ignoring the characters on the periphery. But the peripheral characters have stories too, or could have, if the director had the time to explore them. He can only, in a few cases, suggest those stories with an image, a fragment of conversation, whatever (there is one particular scene in a late night coffee shop that employs just these elements to great effect). Having suggested a wider world, Ozu then course-corrects and gets back to the main thread.

This is masterful filmmaking, well served by the transfer on the recent Shochiku blu.
Another viewing: I stand by what I said about the film, but I'm less happy with the transfer now. Black levels, especially in the early scenes, are too high. I'm guessing Shochiku was trying to please a potential licensee.



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« #19343 : September 30, 2020, 07:57:12 AM »

The Servant (1963) - 6/10. Kind of like Parasite, except at the end instead of a bloodfest there's an orgy. Well, you know, the 60s. The problem with this kind of film is that it's a character study of characters who turn out to be not all that interesting. James Fox is, by the end, reduced to a quivering blob, and Dirk Bogarde is, in the final analysis, little more than a collection of tics. Harold Pinter, who wrote the screenplay, did, however, get a chance to sharpen up some of the dialog, useful practice for Losey's following film, Accident, the director's masterpiece.

« : September 30, 2020, 08:05:26 AM dave jenkins »


Ya measly skunk! A-campin’ on my trail and lettin’ me do the work an’ then shootin’ me in the back. IN THE BACK!
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« #19344 : September 30, 2020, 09:59:54 AM »

Ten Women in Black/ Kuroi junin no onna (1961) - 7/10. Ten women--a wife and 9 mistresses--band together to kill the philandering husband. A satire on Japanese TV, Japanese adultery, and, I guess, Japanese TV adultery. Very talky but fitfully amusing. Kon Ichikawa is able to pull this off thanks to b&w scope photography and the luminous presence of Keiko Kishi.



Ya measly skunk! A-campin’ on my trail and lettin’ me do the work an’ then shootin’ me in the back. IN THE BACK!
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« #19345 : September 30, 2020, 11:59:57 AM »

The Servant (1963) - 6/10. Kind of like Parasite, except at the end instead of a bloodfest there's an orgy. Well, you know, the 60s. The problem with this kind of film is that it's a character study of characters who turn out to be not all that interesting. James Fox is, by the end, reduced to a quivering blob, and Dirk Bogarde is, in the final analysis, little more than a collection of tics. Harold Pinter, who wrote the screenplay, did, however, get a chance to sharpen up some of the dialog, useful practice for Losey's following film, Accident, the director's masterpiece.

Yes, Accident is Losey's masterpiece, but The Servant is not so far away. Not to forget the beautiful The Go-Between.


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« #19346 : September 30, 2020, 02:39:22 PM »

Yes, Accident is Losey's masterpiece, but The Servant is not so far away. Not to forget the beautiful The Go-Between.
Make that "the beautiful but empty The Go-Between."



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« #19347 : September 30, 2020, 04:20:25 PM »

The Prowler (1951) is Losey's masterpiece, even though I haven't seen Adventure (1967). If I don't care for The Sevant, should I even bother with that movie? For what it's worth, I am very underwhelmed with post Hollywood Losey in general.



Claudia, we need you to appear in LOST COMMAND. It's gonna revolutionize the war genre..
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« #19348 : October 01, 2020, 02:26:39 AM »

American Sniper 6.5/10
Second viewing, I guess? Drink will be happy to know I'm less annoyed by the politics of the movie since they seemed to me much more ambiguous than the first time around. Yet, the many failures of the movie stand:

- the portraying of the Iraqis is stupid and make the film look like it was done in the 50's
- every single shot with the Syrian sniper is ridiculous and out of place (they look like a fan made Assassin Creed short film)
- the whole thing feels a little too fabricated/by the book

Still, entertaining. On the same topic, a much better work (although probably too politically loaded but the other way around) to turn to is the french comic book "The man who shot Chris Kyle":
https://www.dargaud.com/bd/lhomme-qui-tua-chris-kyle/lhomme-qui-tua-chris-kyle-tome-0-lhomme-qui-tua-chris-kyle-bda5328760
It's gorgeous, much closer to the facts from a documentary standpoint, deeper, truer to the film's title (the "american" part of "american sniper") and is filled with Clint Eastwood quotes, including a couple from GBU.



Kansas City 7/10
So PowerRR is campaining for me to watch Altman movies so I'm doing exactly that, sometimes (so that I don't have to watch Song to Song ever again). Great recreation of a place and time. The jazz is the best part (Altman's Jazz 34 is actually a great companon to that movie). The plot is weird and way too messy, as is, I guess, Jennifer Jason Leigh's performance. All the other performances are top notch and the whole film looks great (Altman's long focal touch was way more precise and polished in the 90's than in was in the 80's, which makes me like it a lot better).

« : October 01, 2020, 02:30:54 AM noodles_leone »

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« #19349 : October 01, 2020, 03:53:08 AM »

Make that "the beautiful but empty The Go-Between."

Really? That's odd.

I remember that you liked The Romantic English Woman. Are there other films by Losey you like?



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