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Author Topic: Rate The Last Movie You Saw  (Read 1836799 times)
dave jenkins
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« Reply #11400 on: January 13, 2013, 12:16:05 PM »

Dredd (2012) 7/10. I missed this in theaters, and so missed seeing it in 3D. I was going to miss it on blu-ray also, until web chatter convinced me it was worth a look. Turns out, it’s worth several. The story is suspiciously close to the one in The Raid: Redemption (2011), but that, apparently, is not the fault of Dredd—although TR:R was released first, the internet informs me that Dredd was written first, and TR:R is the copy. Whatever. The basic premise—a hero must navigate the inside of a skyscraper in which every hand is turned against him—is a Kirby concept that goes back at least to Mister Miracle #3 and #4 (1971). I didn’t enjoy The Raid: Redemption all that much—the fighting was good, but visually the film was nowhere. Part of the problem was that since it was set in a slum building, the murky lighting made the action difficult to see. There’s no such problem with Dredd—in the future, decaying apartment buildings are very well lit. Not only that, because there are things in use like an illicit drug called “slo-mo” the filmmakers have license to present certain scenes in, you know, slo-mo. And, wow. You will believe that blood sqibs can be abstract art. Throughout the movie, great attention has been paid to the look of everything. There are a number of Leonesque shots using close-ups or big heads placed to the side of the frame—unusual for a film composed for 3D. There is CGI, of course, but not as much as you’d expect—some fx were achieved with nothing more than compressed air and a very fast camera. All in all, the film is visually sumptuous; this is the first time I can remember when, having seen a film flat, I was immediately curious to see it in 3D.
 
The solid plot unspools at a terrific clip—it’s all over in 95 minutes. Performances are good: Karl Urban’s chin as Judge Dredd (the Judge NEVER removes his helmet), and a nicely scarred Lena Headey as the top baddie (her final gambit, making her interrupted heartbeat the trigger for a conflagration, is also a Kirby concept—from Uncanny X-Men #9 (1965)). Then there is Olivia Thirlby, who plays a rookie cop partnered with Dredd for her Training Day. Entering danger without her helmet, she is cautioned by Dredd. She replies that her helmet  interferes with her telepathic powers (she’s a mutant). That gives the actress an excuse to show her lovely face for the rest of the film. It also gives Dredd an opening for a dead-pan quip. There are a lot of those—but also one hellacious body count—in this very entertaining film.

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« Reply #11401 on: January 13, 2013, 12:21:16 PM »

But does anyone BETRAY THE LAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAW?

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« Reply #11402 on: January 13, 2013, 12:21:41 PM »

Sounds pretty good. Shit, missed it in the theatre.

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« Reply #11403 on: January 13, 2013, 02:00:48 PM »

Dredd (2012) 7/10. I missed this in theaters, and so missed seeing it in 3D. I was going to miss it on blu-ray also, until web chatter convinced me it was worth a look. Turns out, it’s worth several. The story is suspiciously close to the one in The Raid: Redemption (2011), but that, apparently, is not the fault of Dredd—although TR:R was released first, the internet informs me that Dredd was written first, and TR:R is the copy. Whatever. The basic premise—a hero must navigate the inside of a skyscraper in which every hand is turned against him—is a Kirby concept that goes back at least to Mister Miracle #3 and #4 (1971). I didn’t enjoy The Raid: Redemption all that much—the fighting was good, but visually the film was nowhere. Part of the problem was that since it was set in a slum building, the murky lighting made the action difficult to see. There’s no such problem with Dredd—in the future, decaying apartment buildings are very well lit. Not only that, because there are things in use like an illicit drug called “slo-mo” the filmmakers have license to present certain scenes in, you know, slo-mo. And, wow. You will believe that blood sqibs can be abstract art. Throughout the movie, great attention has been paid to the look of everything. There are a number of Leonesque shots using close-ups or big heads placed to the side of the frame—unusual for a film composed for 3D. There is CGI, of course, but not as much as you’d expect—some fx were achieved with nothing more than compressed air and a very fast camera. All in all, the film is visually sumptuous; this is the first time I can remember when, having seen a film flat, I was immediately curious to see it in 3D.
 
The solid plot unspools at a terrific clip—it’s all over in 95 minutes. Performances are good: Karl Urban’s chin as Judge Dredd (the Judge NEVER removes his helmet), and a nicely scarred Lena Headey as the top baddie (her final gambit, making her interrupted heartbeat the trigger for a conflagration, is also a Kirby concept—from Uncanny X-Men #9 (1965)). Then there is Olivia Thirlby, who plays a rookie cop partnered with Dredd for her Training Day. Entering danger without her helmet, she is cautioned by Dredd. She replies that her helmet  interferes with her telepathic powers (she’s a mutant). That gives the actress an excuse to show her lovely face for the rest of the film. It also gives Dredd an opening for a dead-pan quip. There are a lot of those—but also one hellacious body count—in this very entertaining film.

I saw it in 3D. You may envy.

I also saw Anthony Dod Mantle. You may envy.

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« Reply #11404 on: January 13, 2013, 02:12:16 PM »

A Single Man (2009) - 8/10

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« Reply #11405 on: January 13, 2013, 03:27:39 PM »

I saw it in 3D. You may envy.

I also saw Anthony Dod Mantle. You may envy.
You mean, he was at the screening you attended? Or you saw him on a separate occasion? Did he have anything interesting to say?

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« Reply #11406 on: January 13, 2013, 03:36:56 PM »

He said "tell DJ I said hi".

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« Reply #11407 on: January 13, 2013, 03:51:31 PM »

You mean, he was at the screening you attended? Or you saw him on a separate occasion? Did he have anything interesting to say?
He did a Q&A after the screening. Very articulate and intelligent man. He said he basically did the movie because he wanted to examine the violence in extreme detail. He made it sound more like an art project than an action movie. Also Peckinpah's name crossed my mind more than once although I don't think he mentioned it. And he stressed that they went for realism in the sense that all of the weapons and such actually exist today. So it's not really sci-fi or anything like that. The quadrangle of the building also exists in Johannesburg. He said one of his biggest hesitations regarding the project was actually shooting the movie in Johannesburg because he was seriously afraid for his life.

He also said he practically directed the slo-mo scenes because they were the last thing they shot and the director had left by then. What's funny is how he talked very much about his collaboration with screenwriter but said almost nothing about the director. I guess the director was in a hurry to copycat his own work in The Raid: Redemption...

I think you should know that the 3D is very delicate most of the time but really over the top in the slo-mo scenes.

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« Reply #11408 on: January 13, 2013, 04:09:05 PM »

I think you should know that the 3D is very delicate most of the time but really over the top in the slo-mo scenes.
That's pretty much what the reviewer at blu-ray.com says:
Quote
The 3D experience here is similarly kind of nonintuitive. Instead of thrusting objects into the virtual face of the viewer, Travis and Mantle chose to go a more subtle route, by "suggesting" depth through extreme close-ups of faces (the film utilized a couple of cameras developed specifically for this shoot). Travis and Mantle both frame a lot of shots through foreground objects like chain link fences and wiring, but those are typically out of focus and don't appreciably add to the visual immersion. The film's kind of soft and often monochromatic color scheme also may not initially seem to offer much in the way of a 3D "wow" factor, but there are several standout sequences nonetheless. The "Slo-Mo" drug effects are probably the showiest, with Travis finally relenting and, yes, thrusting objects into the face of the viewer, but there are a number of other very effective moments, including some great shots up through the massive atrium of Peachtrees.

I noticed they also amped up the color for each of the slo-mo sections.

I enjoyed trying to figure out which city was used for the backdrop. It was only after I saw the end credits that I knew, though. Yeah, sounds like a dangerous place.

It's interesting that the DP seems to have had more to do with creative decisions in this film than the putative director . . . .

Yeah, "Peckinpah" came to my mind too, but not as often as "Kirby" did.

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« Reply #11409 on: January 13, 2013, 04:23:56 PM »

Btw, here's a Raid vs. Dredd chronology from a poster at IMDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1899353/board/nest/206291904?d=208705252&p=2#208705252

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« Reply #11410 on: January 13, 2013, 05:09:15 PM »

Two-Lane Blacktop (1971) - 3.5/10
Decided to finish it. It got better.

Frankenweenie (2012) - 6.5/10
Good.

Clean, Shaven (1993) - 8.5/10
Constantly intriguing, and a technical masterpiece of film-making. Unlike anything I've seen before. Not a 10/10 because my ratings are always subjective - a bit too depressing and emotionless for my tastes.

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« Reply #11411 on: January 13, 2013, 09:54:18 PM »

Just saw Rififi for the first time. Le Cercle Rouge is almost a direct rip-off.

Rififi is a real good movie, though I'd probably have enjoyed it more if I hadn't already seen  Le Cercle Rouge and The Asphalt Jungle (and The Killing, though that one doesn't involve an intricate jewel heist, but an intricate racetrack heist)

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« Reply #11412 on: January 14, 2013, 02:31:07 AM »

A FISH CALLED WANDA 9/10

About 10th viewing. Ecco le due cupole del catedrale di Milano.

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« Reply #11413 on: January 14, 2013, 03:04:44 AM »

A FISH CALLED WANDA 9/10

About 10th viewing. Ecco le due cupole del catedrale di Milano.
I'm quite convinced it's the funniest movie ever made.

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« Reply #11414 on: January 14, 2013, 03:58:05 AM »

At least, this guy is arguably the most funny movie character ever:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YKbYLb5GVc

Ok, let's call it a tie. With Walter Sobchak.

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