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Author Topic: Rate The Last Movie You Saw  (Read 1833244 times)
noodles_leone
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« Reply #16470 on: November 17, 2016, 02:26:08 PM »

A filmmaker is in trouble if he has to rely on extra-cinematic means to convey his meaning. There is nothing in the film to suggest that watching coffee permeating a sugar cube has anything to do with grief. One could watch such a thing for any number of reasons: idleness comes to mind. Of course we know that Binoche is in a "state of grief" and one can make the meaning fit after the fact, but I've certainly watched my share of sugar cubes absorbing fluid without feeling any association with suffering. The fact is, human experience is full of random moments that have nothing to do with the main programs of our lives. That's why I think K's cinema works even if it doesn't completely fulfill his intentions. I doubt most viewers would come up with the sugar-cube-watching-spells-defense-mechanism idea. But it doesn't matter. The sugar cube scene also works as a piece of meaningless trivia because our lives are filled with such moments.

There are any number of such instances in the 3CT. There is a very ostentatious camera move in Red where the camera suddenly dollies back at great speed and passes into another room as if to suddenly reveal some important detail.

For his defense, he was making a different point in the interview I saw (a point about paying attention to the audience while making the film). He spends much more time explaining the different sugar cubes they tried than explaining the intention behind the shot. Still, we agree: I had no idea what this shot was about before I saw this interview.

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« Reply #16471 on: November 18, 2016, 06:31:11 AM »

I had no idea what this shot was about before I saw this interview.
You still don't, you know only what the director intended. Which is not the same thing as what was shown. Trust what a director shows, not what he claims after the fact.

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« Reply #16472 on: November 18, 2016, 08:34:33 AM »

Actually, don't trust anything.

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« Reply #16473 on: November 18, 2016, 08:43:29 AM »

A Warner Bros. film. Paul Henreid is a member of the Underground, fighting the Nazis. The movie is set in a neutral city, crawling with Nazi agents as well as Resistance fighters. Along the way, he deals with Peter Lorre and Sydney Greenstreet. The main character falls in love with a beautiful married woman who escaped the Nazis ...

No, it's not CASABLANCA, it's THE CONSPIRATORS (1944)

Paul Henreid is the main character. The city is Lisbon. Call this a sequel to Casablanca. The beautiful woman is Hedy Lamarr.

No, it's not nearly as good as CASABLANCA. (Which movie is?)

6.5/10

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« Reply #16474 on: November 18, 2016, 10:43:50 AM »

Actually, don't trust anything.
Not even your own artistic judgment? Is that what you tell clients? Do you get a lot of work that way?

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« Reply #16475 on: November 18, 2016, 03:42:14 PM »

In Cold Blood (1967) 10/10 Afro Afro Afro

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« Reply #16476 on: November 19, 2016, 07:24:32 AM »

Not even your own artistic judgment? Is that what you tell clients? Do you get a lot of work that way?

I don't tell anything to my clients. I follow Oscar Isaac's tips from A Most Violent Year: I just stare at them way too long. It works pretty well.

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« Reply #16477 on: November 20, 2016, 08:21:50 AM »

The Executioner (1963) - 7/10. A film by Luis García Berlanga. In Spain, a squeamish man takes a job as a government executioner, then spends the film trying to avoid doing what he's paid for. Not LOL funny, there is enough humor to keep things going for a bit but the conceit overstays its welcome. I learned one thing from the film, though: Spanish executions in the 60s were done by garrote. Not the kind of film I would normally re-watch, but in this case the lush black & white widescreen photography (supplied by a guy called Delli Colli) will probably draw me back to it.

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« Reply #16478 on: November 20, 2016, 11:17:44 AM »

The Executioner (1963) - 7/10. A film by Luis García Berlanga. In Spain, a squeamish man takes a job as a government executioner, then spends the film trying to avoid doing what he's paid for. Not LOL funny, there is enough humor to keep things going for a bit but the conceit overstays its welcome. I learned one thing from the film, though: Spanish executions in the 60s were done by garrote. Not the kind of film I would normally re-watch, but in this case the lush black & white widescreen photography (supplied by a guy called Delli Colli) will probably draw me back to it.

If I remember well 7/10 is about right.

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« Reply #16479 on: November 20, 2016, 02:35:57 PM »

My Filmstruck subscription is starting to pay dividends:

Utsukushisa to kanashimi to / With Beauty and Sorrow (1965) - 8/10. A color film by Masahiro Shinoda, released just after Pale Flower and Assassination. This features that same nut-job from PF, Mariko Kaga, here playing another nut-job, a woman out for revenge. It seems years ago a man (So Yamamura) took a 16-year-old girl as a mistress, got her pregnant, then, after she delivered and the baby died, the girl tried to commit suicide. She recovered but the relationship with the older man ended. Then the man wrote about it and became a famous novelist. The woman went on to become a respected artist and has put the past behind her. But it's her pupil (Kaga) who can't forgive and forget, and who crafts an elaborate vengeance involving multi-generational seductions. Oh yeah, there's lots of kinky sex in this, although all of it is suggested rather than shown. From a novel by Nobel winner Yasunori Kawabata.

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« Reply #16480 on: November 21, 2016, 05:19:04 AM »

Dreams (1990) – 3/10. Eight vignettes based on AK’s dreams and childhood memories (i.e. Dullsville x Cool. I saw this when it first came out, in a cinema in Shinjuku—my Japanese date fell asleep, which was the correct response. Some of the photography, though, is wonderful, so I bought the new CC blu anyway. I was also hoping Stephen Prince’s commentary would even liven things up, but it didn’t (no fault of the well-researched Mr. Prince). This is the first film where Kurosawa did not collaborate with another scriptwriter. It shows.

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« Reply #16481 on: November 21, 2016, 07:18:07 AM »

Dreams (1990) – 3/10. Eight vignettes based on AK’s dreams and childhood memories (i.e. Dullsville x Cool. I saw this when it first came out, in a cinema in Shinjuku—my Japanese date fell asleep, which was the correct response. Some of the photography, though, is wonderful, so I bought the new CC blu anyway. I was also hoping Stephen Prince’s commentary would even liven things up, but it didn’t (no fault of the well-researched Mr. Prince). This is the first film where Kurosawa did not collaborate with another scriptwriter. It shows.

I love Kurosawa as a movie director. However, I completely agree with you on "Dreams". I always felt that Kurosawa himself represented a unique combination of a great eye for visual composition (collaborating with his cinematographers) and an ability to edit everything himself (often incorporating multiple shots/angles). Without the innovative shots/editing here, he can't sustain my interest. Plus, the plot is hardly gripping.

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« Reply #16482 on: November 21, 2016, 08:25:41 AM »

The Spiral Staircase (1945) - 6.7/10

Succumbs to its naiveness in the end, otherwise an entertaining enough company-of-characters ridden little piece from its time.

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« Reply #16483 on: November 21, 2016, 08:33:41 AM »

I love Kurosawa as a movie director. However, I completely agree with you on "Dreams". I always felt that Kurosawa himself represented a unique combination of a great eye for visual composition (collaborating with his cinematographers) and an ability to edit everything himself (often incorporating multiple shots/angles). Without the innovative shots/editing here, he can't sustain my interest. Plus, the plot is hardly gripping.
AK completed this film when he was 80. He was well past his prime, perhaps even in his dotage. The films of his youth had verve and brio, accomplished in part with a dynamic camera and the editing you describe. They also had powerful stories. There's nothing like that here, just a series of well-lacquered farts. I almost wish he had stopped making films after Ran.

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« Reply #16484 on: November 21, 2016, 09:20:42 AM »

AK completed this film when he was 80. He was well past his prime, perhaps even in his dotage. The films of his youth had verve and brio, accomplished in part with a dynamic camera and the editing you describe. They also had powerful stories. There's nothing like that here, just a series of well-lacquered farts. I almost wish he had stopped making films after Ran.

There is such a gap between "I wish he had stopped making films after Ran" and "I'm still buying the BD anyway" that I'm not sure the word "almost" covers it.

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