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Author Topic: Rate The Last Movie You Saw  (Read 1767147 times)
dave jenkins
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« Reply #9150 on: May 15, 2011, 01:34:58 PM »

Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle (1994) - 7/10. This isn't the Alan Rudolph film I really wanted to re-watch, I wanted to see Equinox (1992) again, but it doesn't seem to be readily available so I had to settle. MPatVC was pretty much how I remembered it: Jennifer Jason Leigh does her very mannered Dorthy Parker impersonation for 2 hours and you either love it or hate it depending on how well you like Mrs. Parker and, for that matter, Ms. Leigh. The film is a bit smug: it assumes the audience both reveres and finds amusing Mrs. Parker and the various members of her set just because they are famous for being famous in the 1920s. And we're supposed to feel sorry for Mrs. Parker at several times just because--although she was an acid-tongued intellectual who could zing her opponents--she was desperately unhappy. On the other hand, Rudolph, even in his attempt at hagiography, has played fair enough to allow viewers to reach independent verdicts. Here's mine: I'm so glad all those Algonquin Round Tablers are dead. But also: Mark Isham's Jazz Age inspired score is extemely worthwhile.

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« Reply #9151 on: May 16, 2011, 04:34:32 AM »

Stalingrad: Dogs, Do You Want to Live Forever? (1958) This is praised no end by the 4 reviewers at IMDB. Can't see why. The first half is just talk, stock footage and embarrassing scenes which aim to persuade the viewers that the russian campaign was an act of brotherly love and the germans easily fraternized with the local people. The second half has some good action scenes but marred by, again, melodrama. All in all a generous 6\10.

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« Reply #9152 on: May 16, 2011, 11:03:34 AM »

Death Walks at Midnight (1972) The reason to watch italian gialli of the early '70's were, at least for me, to see the nudes of famous actresses, possibly in lez scenes; and have some cheap suspense thrills. Both elements are absent from this movie so, in spite of Scott's presence, I give it 1\10.

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« Reply #9153 on: May 16, 2011, 11:16:10 AM »

Providence (1977) - 7/10. Second viewing--first after 34 years. An aging English novelist (John Gielgud), drunk and in pain, spends a dark night of the soul imagining scenes from his new novel. He peoples the scenes with Dirk Bogarde, Ellen Burstyn, and David Warner, and others, trying out bits of dialogue and what-have-you. The plot line never quite comes together (something about old people turning into werewolves and being hunted in a vaguely European police state) but as the scenes go on it becomes clear that the novelist has based the characters on his nearest and dearest. The true story emerges--the novelist is facing death with a number of regrets, chief among them the misunderstandings he's had with his children. Suddenly it's morning and everything (not only the filter) changes. The novelist is out on the lawn of his mansion awaiting the arrival of guests for his birthday party. Bogarde, Burstyn and Warner arrive, now in their "true" characters, the author's children. Everyone is very civil, the weather is warm, the scenery beautiful--the terror of the previous night is completely dispelled. After a sumptuous meal, the novelist sends his children away, ready at last to meet his end.

This sort of thing has been done many times since--most recently in Charlie Kaufman films (Adaptation, say) or in Joe Wright's Atonement, or in The Double Hour. Those films tend to cheat, though, confusing the issue of what is cinematic "reality" and cinematic "imagination" just so they can foist a cheap surprise on the audience. Alain Resnais's film, by contrast--his only one in English?--plays fair, using voice-over and the like to make it clear from the beginning that Gielgud is the film's demiurge. And what a performance from Gielgud--one of his absolute best (I don't know which I enjoy more, Gielgud's performance, or the knowledge that it is one Groggy will never experience). The film has other virtues, chiefly the overheated score by Miklos Rozsa. Certainly worth viewing--if you can find it.

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« Reply #9154 on: May 16, 2011, 12:26:57 PM »

The Cowboys - 8/10 - 3rd or 4th viewing, though it's been a long time.

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« Reply #9155 on: May 16, 2011, 06:48:54 PM »

The Gambler and the Lady (1952) a Hammer Film Noir directed by Patrick Jenkins and Terence Fisher with Dane Clark, Kathleen Byron, Naomi Chance, Meredith Edwards, Anthony Forwood, Eric Pohlmann, and Enzo Coticchia. Imdb says: A social-climbing American with a business in illegal gambling falls in love with a blue blood, but gangsters and a jealous ex-girlfriend stand in the way of happiness. Pretty much sums it up, its mildly amusing, but barely noir-ish the best sequence is right before the titles. 6/10

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« Reply #9156 on: May 17, 2011, 12:49:55 PM »

The Outlaw Josey Wales - 7/10 - 3rd complete viewing. I'll stand by my assessment of lots of good scenes adding up to an unimpressive whole.

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« Reply #9157 on: May 18, 2011, 02:15:20 AM »

Seven Deaths in the Cat's Eye (1973)  Another Margheriti's predictable opus, they're all the same. No nudes, a lez scene wasted, no suspense.  Boring. Gainsbourg is weird .i4\10

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« Reply #9158 on: May 18, 2011, 04:16:02 AM »

Elizabeth - 6-8/10 - 3rd viewing. I could fall either way with this one, considering it either very good or mediocre, and I don't think settling for a seven quite works. Being written by the guy who later brought us The Tudors, it's a potboiler with lots of sex, violence, intrigue and little resemblence to historical facts (the estate of William Cecil should sue). On other levels it's very good, with gorgeous visuals, excellent music and Cate Blanchett and Geoffrey Rush at the top of their games. You may judge which aspect(s) are more important.

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« Reply #9159 on: May 18, 2011, 06:26:54 AM »

The Comancheros (1961) - 7/10. First Blu-ray viewing. Stuart Whitman is annoying, Ina Balin unappealing, and Texas looks suspiciously like Arizona, but Lee Marvin's a hoot, the Duke is the Duke, the Cinemascope frame is used exceedingly well, the score is pleasant, and the loosely linked episodes give Michael Curtiz's final film a Fordian feel (say that five times fast). Has it occured to anyone besides me that an equally good title for this film would have been Two Magnificent Tramps?

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« Reply #9160 on: May 18, 2011, 08:47:36 AM »

I like similar story in Rio Conchos better. But like you say Marvin's a hoot.

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« Reply #9161 on: May 18, 2011, 10:32:14 AM »

The Comancheros (1961) - 7/10. First Blu-ray viewing. Stuart Whitman is annoying, Ina Balin unappealing, and Texas looks suspiciously like Arizona, but Lee Marvin's a hoot, the Duke is the Duke, the Cinemascope frame is used exceedingly well, the score is pleasant, and the loosely linked episodes give Michael Curtiz's final film a Fordian feel (say that five times fast). Has it occured to anyone besides me that an equally good title for this film would have been Two Magnificent Tramps?

I didn't think Whitman was that bad.

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« Reply #9162 on: May 18, 2011, 01:25:22 PM »

Death Walks on High Heels (1971) Much better than the other I reviewed by Ercoli-Scott. This has the spanish MILF nude or half nude for the first half of the movie and that grants visibility to the movie. But the development of the mystery plot is intriguing, or at least tolerable and so I give it 7\10.

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« Reply #9163 on: May 18, 2011, 05:46:42 PM »

DANGER DIABOLIK 

Very colourful,fun,actioned packed Mario Bava comic book adaptation with a killer Morricone soundtrack.

9 out of 10  Afro

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« Reply #9164 on: May 19, 2011, 10:40:32 AM »

Big House, U.S.A (1955) 7/10 - This starts out as a kidnapping story and turns midway into a prison break-out film. It was made on the cheap, but it has a great cast: Ralph Meeker, Lon Chaney Jr., William Talman, Charles Bronson, and Broderick Crawford as the craftiest, meanest guy in the pen (Felicia "Randy" Farr also has a few brief scenes). The movie is laid out like a police procedural, with an omniciscient voice-over keeping score and cheering on the law officers. The criminals are not romanticized, and they all come to a bad end.

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