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Author Topic: Rate The Last Movie You Saw  (Read 1768496 times)
Groggy
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« Reply #12015 on: May 28, 2013, 07:04:56 PM »

Breakfast Club is decent. I just don't get why it's hailed as some sort of realistic masterpiece.

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« Reply #12016 on: May 28, 2013, 07:19:36 PM »

Finished Cracker. I'll go out on a limb and label the two one-off specials as movies.

Cracker: White Ghost - 7/10 - Fitz turns up in Hong Kong just before the handover. Alongside a feisty Chinese lady cop and soused Scouse DCI Wise, they investigate a series of seemingly random murders. It's a decent show that makes good use of its Hong Kong locale, with Robbie Coltrane in top form and the guest cast quite good. All that's missing is a compelling villain.

Cracker: A New Terror - 4/10 - In 2006 Jimmy McGovern relocated Fitz to the new and improved Manchester. After the initial buzz wears off we're left with a preachy, obnoxious tale of an Army vet-turned-cop who becomes a serial killer, murdering Americans in vengeance for Iraq and George Bush. Full of obnoxious stereotypes and long-winded political lectures that ruin the whodunnit (or whydunnit) thrills.

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« Reply #12017 on: May 28, 2013, 09:00:44 PM »

Brute Force (1947) 7.5/10

Further discussion here http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=10937.msg165641#msg165641



Carbine Williams (1952) 6/10

The story of David Marshall "Carbine" Williams http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Marshall_Williams
While in a North Carolina prison on a questionable murder charge for the death of a sheriff's deputy who raided his distillery during Prohibition, Williams (played by James Stewart) invents major innovations for firearms. His sentence, originally 20-30 years, is eventually commuted after about a decade. His innovations were used in guns in World War II, and he worked for a time at Winchester.

Stewart delivers a fine performance as the country boy Williams.

I'm not familiar with the details of the real Carbine Williams's trial, but in the movie, Williams botches his defense so badly, it seems he almost wants to go to prison. I mean, it looks as if he doesn't give a damn about fighting for his own defense, it's kind of a strange trial scene.

IMO, Williams did nothing wrong and didn't deserve to be in prison. Any jackass Prohibition agent who shows up with guns to raid a distillery, is taking his life into his own hands. What else should Williams have done -- just walked meekly into his hands and say "arrest me?" I have no problem with Williams's actions and don't think he deserved to be in prison. HOWEVER, set aside for a moment the reason he is in prison: IMO, I see no reason why someone should be released just because he has made a major innovation. Is that how it should work - a brilliant inventor gets out early, whereas if he was just another dude, he has to finish his sentence? That's crazy. If he has something to offer society, let them give him a full workshop to work on and develop his inventions in the prison. And let him earn money for it (that he could save for after he is released, or use to buy things now, or send to his family, etc.)
But commuting his sentence just because he has made an inventions is ridiculous.

In Williams's case, I am happy about it cuz I don't think he deserved to be in prison on the first place. But in general, no prisoner should get an early release just because he made a brilliant invention.

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« Reply #12018 on: May 29, 2013, 12:18:22 AM »

Breakfast Club is decent. I just don't get why it's hailed as some sort of realistic masterpiece.

It's trying to be THE high school movie, using archetypes to talk about the loneliness of every teenager. So it's trying to be a realistic masterpiece.

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« Reply #12019 on: May 30, 2013, 04:50:26 AM »

BRONSON (2008) - 6/10

Second viewing. Still experimental, cold and interesting. It looks like somebody wrote a film supposed to be cool and fun and QT/earlyPTA/wright -esque, and then hired the guy who did Pusher to direct it, and something else happened.

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« Reply #12020 on: May 30, 2013, 06:41:38 AM »

I think it works better that she's so uninteresting. It raises ambiguity as to why Mud is so fascinated with her. Sam Shepard mentioned that he's loved the girl since they were kids. Perhaps in their childhood she was a different person who had changed so drastically over time. Mud is delusional and infatuated with a girl from his past who really no longer exists. I think it's a case of an overly optimistic childhood love which just never left him. This is something unfortunately common for some people.
I think this is right. Then there's the parallel with Ellis and the older girl he's infatuated with and the fact that he gets to understand much more quickly that she isn't worth his devotion. Perhaps Mud even serves as a negative example by which he can understand his situation better.

It's interesting that you guys are focusing on the adult characters, whereas I thought the film was really about Ellis and his buddy Neckbone. Both child actors were amazing, delivering performances whose authenticity astounded me. This film is the perfect antidote to Spielberg B.S.: real kid characters, and--hey!--real adult characters, co-existing and interacting in the same movie!!!

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« Reply #12021 on: May 30, 2013, 08:47:41 AM »

I think this is right. Then there's the parallel with Ellis and the older girl he's infatuated with and the fact that he gets to understand much more quickly that she isn't worth his devotion. Perhaps Mud even serves as a negative example by which he can understand his situation better.

It may be right. If it is, they focused the movie in the least interesting possible direction with such a promising initial situation. But it's their movie, not mine.

It's interesting that you guys are focusing on the adult characters, whereas I thought the film was really about Ellis and his buddy Neckbone. Both child actors were amazing, delivering performances whose authenticity astounded me. This film is the perfect antidote to Spielberg B.S.: real kid characters, and--hey!--real adult characters, co-existing and interacting in the same movie!!!

The movie did a great job characterizing male characters, even those who have very little screen-time. For example, Michael Shannon is on screen for less than 5 minutes but you feel like you met a real human being. They failed most women, as if the screenwriter had the same kind of relationship with women as his male characters (which means: he probably never talked to one). And of course, the main success is the way kids are portrayed.

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« Reply #12022 on: May 30, 2013, 11:25:21 AM »

The movie did a great job characterizing male characters, even those who have very little screen-time. For example, Michael Shannon is on screen for less than 5 minutes but you feel like you met a real human being. They failed most women, as if the screenwriter had the same kind of relationship with women as his male characters (which means: he probably never talked to one). And of course, the main success is the way kids are portrayed.
It's true that most of the women aren't well drawn--the exception, though, seems to be Ellis's mother, who I thought came through as a very solid and sympathetic individual. The obscure objects of desire, the Reese Witherspoon character and the girl Ellis likes: they were pretty flat. They are necessary for the male-driven plot, and little else, and perhaps are given short shrift on that account. The film is already pretty long as it is. On the other hand, since I believe that one of the themes of the film is about male desire and the tendency in certain males to affix that desire onto unworthy persons, it may have been necessary to depict those women as flat. And everything is shown from the male perspective, so I wouldn't expect a fair accounting of all the women anyway.

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« Reply #12023 on: May 30, 2013, 11:44:37 AM »

On the other hand, since I believe that one of the themes of the film is about male desire and the tendency in certain males to affix that desire onto unworthy persons, it may have been necessary to depict those women as flat. And everything is shown from the male perspective, so I wouldn't expect a fair accounting of all the women anyway.

I have no problem with the "women are all whores except my mother" themes: like you said, it's from the male perspective. However, the whole thing fails if the women are JUST whores. See OUATIA: they're all whores, but they also all have something more. Carol is crazy and determined. Eve is devoted. Deborah is ambitious and complex.

The movie being already long enough isn't a very good argument. First, it's less about time than pace: the movie takes its time. They could have shortened many many scenes and gained available minutes without anyone noticing. Second, they showed that they could characterize someone who doesn't even interact with the other characters in under 5 minutes.

I'd add that you guys probably agree with me on this, since, as far as I know, you didn't rate this film 9/10 (for the cheap ending). Apart from non interesting love stories, it's pretty great.

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« Reply #12024 on: May 30, 2013, 11:58:26 AM »

Actually, I think I did give it a "9." It's so much better than most of what's currently out there.

What do you mean by "the cheap ending"? You mean where Mud and his dad hit the Gulf of Mexico (and therefore, freedom)?

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« Reply #12025 on: May 30, 2013, 01:16:27 PM »

KELLY'S HEROES (1970) 8.5/10

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« Reply #12026 on: May 30, 2013, 01:40:25 PM »

Actually, I think I did give it a "9."

Aaah that's what I was afraid of while posting my previous answer.  Grin

What do you mean by "the cheap ending"?

Well I'd have preferred an open ending concerning the life or death of Mud (you should probably put "spoiler" ahead of your previous post), but that's not very important. No I was talking about the whole action scene. It's not very well done, although there was room for a great sequence here. The bad guys are too bad, the old neighbor is too good of a shooter, nothing happens with the dad and the mother although they're right in the middle of the shooting and should shoot Mud as soon as they witness this stranger with a gun in their house... I don't know what exactly went wrong but this whole scene, which is the climax, isn't as good as the rest of the movie and has a very different atmosphere. It's not well integrated. It's just a regular shootout, while most of the movie was many thing but NOT a regular anything.

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« Reply #12027 on: May 30, 2013, 02:06:36 PM »

Stardust Memories (1980) - 8.5/10
Possibly the best Woody Allen movie I've seen.

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« Reply #12028 on: May 30, 2013, 08:40:31 PM »

Well I'd have preferred an open ending concerning the life or death of Mud (you should probably put "spoiler" ahead of your previous post), but that's not very important. No I was talking about the whole action scene. It's not very well done, although there was room for a great sequence here. The bad guys are too bad, the old neighbor is too good of a shooter, nothing happens with the dad and the mother although they're right in the middle of the shooting and should shoot Mud as soon as they witness this stranger with a gun in their house... I don't know what exactly went wrong but this whole scene, which is the climax, isn't as good as the rest of the movie and has a very different atmosphere. It's not well integrated. It's just a regular shootout, while most of the movie was many thing but NOT a regular anything.
Completely agree with everything there. Very disappointing scene.

And yeah, the mother is good for the film not to seem completely sexist. I agree with whoever said it that the 'flatness' of the women is used to drive the male-centered plot.

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« Reply #12029 on: May 31, 2013, 06:12:38 AM »

I agree with whoever said it that the 'flatness' of the women is used to drive the male-centered plot.
That would be me.

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