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: Rate The Last Movie You Saw  ( 3307459 )
noodles_leone
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« #18090 : January 04, 2019, 06:08:05 AM »

Le Cercle Rouge (1970) 7/10 - 4th viewing or so.
Still cool as hell. Good to see Bourvil in something serious. His (unhealthy) face works great here. It's a shame he didn't get the time to do more of these, he could have become great. Delon is Delon, Volonte is volonte. Melville's eye for efficience still amazes and is what makes many of his films, like this one, unique to this day. His taste for everything that looks American was probably a bit ridiculous at the time (when you wanted to be discrete in 1970 France, the last thing you'd do is to buy an American car), but now that decades have gone by, it works pretty well, even for French viewers.

Carnal Knowledge (1971) 7/10 - 1st viewing.
Some parts aged a lot and only hold now because of some kind of desuet charm. Some dialogues are impressive. Nichols' choice to give us plenty of extended shots makes it a quite fascinating watch. Somehow, the film never achieves what it's trying to do, but the emotion is there. All in all, it looks a lot like a big reharsal for Closer, that does all of it much better.

Home Alone 1 & 2 (1990-92) 11/10 - 4,253th viewing
Christmas is Christmas. The sequel is better than the original. Period.

Hunger (2008) 8/10 - 2nd viewing
Much better and less boring than I remembered. Gorgeous cinematography. Terrific opening 15 minutes. Terrific narrative structure. Terrific dialogue scene right in the middle. The final part of the movie isn't as great as the first, but still. Also, more poop and anal searches than I remembered, next time I won't watch it while eating.

Widows (2018) 4/10
How come every Steve McQueen's film is way worst than the previous one? The biggest trouble here is the tone. McQueen does what he does best, which is to make everything look like a huge yet believable tragedy. Which is also what doesn't work when 20% of the movie is supposed to be a comedy and 40% is supposed to be a Tom Cruise heist. The result here is that the worst parts of the movie are the actual tragic moments. Where is Steven Soderberg when you need him? Anyway, great performances by most of the supporting cast, including Robert Duvall, Colin Farrell, Lukas Haas, Garret Dillahunt, Cynthia Erivo and Kevin J. O'Connor. The widows themselves aren't very convincing apart from Elizabeth Debicki (who also inherits the best scenes of the movie) but the worst of the bunch is probably good old Liam Neeson.


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« #18091 : January 04, 2019, 06:09:44 AM »

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). Just sampled the Blue Danube Waltz sequence on the new BD. Beautiful. And the image is so sharp you can read the instructions for the Zero Gravity Toilet (if your monitor is large enough). Film: 9/10. SFX: 11/10. Restoration and Transfer: 10/10.

What restoration is it? The Nolan "unrestoration" or some big "remove the grain" operation?

Saw Fracture last night, pretty good.  No one else but Hopkins can play that type of character so well.

Yeah, pretty good. Yet, I don't think Hopkins character would even remotely work if he hadn't played Hannibal Lecter first.

« : January 04, 2019, 06:12:57 AM noodles_leone »

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« #18092 : January 04, 2019, 12:28:19 PM »

Home Alone 1 & 2 (1990-92) 11/10 - 4,253th viewing
Christmas is Christmas. The sequel is better than the original. Period.
Whoa there, that is a scorching hot take. The sequel is a success considering an entertaining movie was made with such an awful premise, but how is it better when it essentially apes the first movie beat by beat? The first movie is just timeless with so many classic scenes and is also way funnier.



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« #18093 : January 04, 2019, 01:21:35 PM »

Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) – 10/10.
The wife and I were watching several Henry Fonda movies (The Lady Eve, Daisy Kenyon) and Mrs. Jenkins was feeling impressed with Fonda’s ability to play characters who were slightly “off.” I asked her if she wanted to see a performance where the character wasn’t merely off, he was evil incarnate. She said, Sure. So I spun the Paramount blu-ray (marveling again at the PQ—why can’t all Leone films look this good?) and a good time was had by all. Afterwards, though, Mrs. Jenkins had several questions, some about the elided plot points, but also things like, Why does Harmonica tear off portions of Jill’s dress? I tried to explain about Frank’s men overwatching the farm and Harmonica’s need to draw them in so he could kill them. She replied that that was ridiculous, the men were too far away to note any alteration to Jill’s clothing. Well, okay, I replied, What’s your idea? My idea, she said, is that Harmonica just wants to see Jill’s tits. Mrs. Jenkins! Such language! Also, I don’t think you appreciate the degree to which Harmonica’s need for revenge drives out all other considerations. She said, I don’t think you appreciate the degree to which Leone wants to show off Claudia’s cleavage to drooling creeps.  I said, Did you notice that Harmonica and Jill at the well references several stories from the Bible? Isaac and Rebekkah, Jacob and Rachel, Moses and his first wife –all meet at wells. Mrs. Jenkins nodded and said, such things are common to a variety of world literatures. For example, there is a story in Japanese mythology in which Yamasachi and Toyotama-hime meet at a well: their descendants become the Yamato emperors! I said, Yes, yes, the biblical well stories are also about furthering national destiny. Now notice how Leone in his film turns this trope on its head: Harmonica and Jill come together at a well, not to have children (create life), but so that Harmonica can further his death-dealing agenda. Jill is a water-bearer, a symbolic nurturer, the matriarch of the new West, the new order that will supplant the Age of Heroes. The fact that Jill and Harmonica’s relationship is sterile underscores the deficient nature of this new age. Mrs. Jenkins said, Dude, you’re reading too much into this simple Western. But notice that Henry Fonda, because he’s at the top of the bill, is the only actor allowed to press himself repeatedly against Claudia Cardinale. He even gets to rub her stomach!

And on the discussion went, long into the evening.

At Mrs. Jenkins’ request, however, I picked a film for the following night that was less “controversial”: Funny Face with Fred and Audrey.




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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« #18094 : January 04, 2019, 04:15:56 PM »

Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) – 10/10.
The wife and I were watching several Henry Fonda movies (The Lady Eve, Daisy Kenyon) and Mrs. Jenkins was feeling impressed with Fonda’s ability to play characters who were slightly “off.” I asked her if she wanted to see a performance where the character wasn’t merely off, he was evil incarnate. She said, Sure. So I spun the Paramount blu-ray (marveling again at the PQ—why can’t all Leone films look this good?) and a good time was had by all. Afterwards, though, Mrs. Jenkins had several questions, some about the elided plot points, but also things like, Why does Harmonica tear off portions of Jill’s dress? I tried to explain about Frank’s men overwatching the farm and Harmonica’s need to draw them in so he could kill them. She replied that that was ridiculous, the men were too far away to note any alteration to Jill’s clothing. Well, okay, I replied, What’s your idea? My idea, she said, is that Harmonica just wants to see Jill’s tits. Mrs. Jenkins! Such language! Also, I don’t think you appreciate the degree to which Harmonica’s need for revenge drives out all other considerations. She said, I don’t think you appreciate the degree to which Leone wants to show off Claudia’s cleavage to drooling creeps.  I said, Did you notice that Harmonica and Jill at the well references several stories from the Bible? Isaac and Rebekkah, Jacob and Rachel, Moses and his first wife –all meet at wells. Mrs. Jenkins nodded and said, such things are common to a variety of world literatures. For example, there is a story in Japanese mythology in which Yamasachi and Toyotama-hime meet at a well: their descendants become the Yamato emperors! I said, Yes, yes, the biblical well stories are also about furthering national destiny. Now notice how Leone in his film turns this trope on its head: Harmonica and Jill come together at a well, not to have children (create life), but so that Harmonica can further his death-dealing agenda. Jill is a water-bearer, a symbolic nurturer, the matriarch of the new West, the new order that will supplant the Age of Heroes. The fact that Jill and Harmonica’s relationship is sterile underscores the deficient nature of this new age. Mrs. Jenkins said, Dude, you’re reading too much into this simple Western. But notice that Henry Fonda, because he’s at the top of the bill, is the only actor allowed to press himself repeatedly against Claudia Cardinale. He even gets to rub her stomach!

And on the discussion went, long into the evening.

At Mrs. Jenkins’ request, however, I picked a film for the following night that was less “controversial”: Funny Face with Fred and Audrey.

lol


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noodles_leone
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« #18095 : January 05, 2019, 04:03:35 AM »

Whoa there, that is a scorching hot take. The sequel is a success considering an entertaining movie was made with such an awful premise, but how is it better when it essentially apes the first movie beat by beat? The first movie is just timeless with so many classic scenes and is also way funnier.

It does ape the first movie beat by beat, and I understand why it unnerves people, but to me this is the very reason why it's much better.

To me, the first movie was very experimental: they decided to do a Tex Avery film in live action. It turned out great, but the result is that most of the screenwriting, camerawork and editing technics were just that: experiments. Many of these technics didn't age well, they're way more polished in the sequel. Kind of like FoD "invented" a style and FaFDM polished it. They also had a better grasp at their characters, who are more developped, funnier and better played than in the first one. In the end the sequel works better because while it does everything the original did, beat by beat (sometimes even line by line), every single beat is better.

On an even more subjective level:
- maybe it's just the european tourist in me talking, but I enjoy far more seeing Kevin free in New York City than buying a toothbrush in a small town.
- the whole Duncan's Toy Chest and Children's hospital subplot, while totally ridiculous, pushes all the right buttons for a perfect Christmas movie.


noodles_leone
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« #18096 : January 05, 2019, 04:03:59 AM »

Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) – 10/10.
The wife and I were watching several Henry Fonda movies (The Lady Eve, Daisy Kenyon) and Mrs. Jenkins was feeling impressed with Fonda’s ability to play characters who were slightly “off.” I asked her if she wanted to see a performance where the character wasn’t merely off, he was evil incarnate. She said, Sure. So I spun the Paramount blu-ray (marveling again at the PQ—why can’t all Leone films look this good?) and a good time was had by all. Afterwards, though, Mrs. Jenkins had several questions, some about the elided plot points, but also things like, Why does Harmonica tear off portions of Jill’s dress? I tried to explain about Frank’s men overwatching the farm and Harmonica’s need to draw them in so he could kill them. She replied that that was ridiculous, the men were too far away to note any alteration to Jill’s clothing. Well, okay, I replied, What’s your idea? My idea, she said, is that Harmonica just wants to see Jill’s tits. Mrs. Jenkins! Such language! Also, I don’t think you appreciate the degree to which Harmonica’s need for revenge drives out all other considerations. She said, I don’t think you appreciate the degree to which Leone wants to show off Claudia’s cleavage to drooling creeps.  I said, Did you notice that Harmonica and Jill at the well references several stories from the Bible? Isaac and Rebekkah, Jacob and Rachel, Moses and his first wife –all meet at wells. Mrs. Jenkins nodded and said, such things are common to a variety of world literatures. For example, there is a story in Japanese mythology in which Yamasachi and Toyotama-hime meet at a well: their descendants become the Yamato emperors! I said, Yes, yes, the biblical well stories are also about furthering national destiny. Now notice how Leone in his film turns this trope on its head: Harmonica and Jill come together at a well, not to have children (create life), but so that Harmonica can further his death-dealing agenda. Jill is a water-bearer, a symbolic nurturer, the matriarch of the new West, the new order that will supplant the Age of Heroes. The fact that Jill and Harmonica’s relationship is sterile underscores the deficient nature of this new age. Mrs. Jenkins said, Dude, you’re reading too much into this simple Western. But notice that Henry Fonda, because he’s at the top of the bill, is the only actor allowed to press himself repeatedly against Claudia Cardinale. He even gets to rub her stomach!

And on the discussion went, long into the evening.

At Mrs. Jenkins’ request, however, I picked a film for the following night that was less “controversial”: Funny Face with Fred and Audrey.

lol too


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« #18097 : January 05, 2019, 02:49:19 PM »

It does ape the first movie beat by beat, and I understand why it unnerves people, but to me this is the very reason why it's much better.

To me, the first movie was very experimental: they decided to do a Tex Avery film in live action. It turned out great, but the result is that most of the screenwriting, camerawork and editing technics were just that: experiments. Many of these technics didn't age well, they're way more polished in the sequel. Kind of like FoD "invented" a style and FaFDM polished it. They also had a better grasp at their characters, who are more developped, funnier and better played than in the first one. In the end the sequel works better because while it does everything the original did, beat by beat (sometimes even line by line), every single beat is better.

On an even more subjective level:
- maybe it's just the european tourist in me talking, but I enjoy far more seeing Kevin free in New York City than buying a toothbrush in a small town.
- the whole Duncan's Toy Chest and Children's hospital subplot, while totally ridiculous, pushes all the right buttons for a perfect Christmas movie.

I can see the European tourist appeal, the American in me really enjoys Hitchcock's heavily glamorized take on the south of France in To Catch a Thief.

As for the filming techniques, I'll try watching both movies at some point and examine that. I never really thought much of Columbus as a visual artist, for a lack of better phrase.



Claudia, we need you to appear in LOST COMMAND. It's gonna revolutionize the war genre..
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« #18098 : January 06, 2019, 08:15:59 AM »

I never really thought much of Columbus as a visual artist, for a lack of better phrase.

 ;D ;D


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« #18099 : January 09, 2019, 07:58:42 AM »

Mélo (1986) - 10/10. Alain Resnais divests himself of his style to adopt a conventional TV approach--obvious sets with bad lighting--for this adaptation of a Henri Bernstein play. Part of this was by necessity: the film had to be shot in 21 days, preceded by 2 weeks of rehearsals. But necessity is here made a virtue: nothing remains to enjoy except the performances and the play itself. But what a play.  And what actors: Dussollier, Azema, Arditi. The drama (a love triangle) is constructed in such a way that each performer gets an "act" that focuses on him/her. Each act ends with a surprise "reveal" that generates momentum and leads to a very satisfying conclusion. By making himself anonymous before the material, Resnais serves his source well.



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« #18100 : January 16, 2019, 02:09:35 AM »

Before I Go To Sleep (2014): Nicole Kidman is an amnesiac who wakes up every morning without a memory of the previous day. She slowly starts to unravel the pieces of her past that led to her condition. An interesting Memento-like premise with unfortunately a lot of unfulfilled potential, things never really get tense. Decent but forgettable (hah). 6/10


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« #18101 : January 16, 2019, 12:15:30 PM »

California Split (1974) - 8/10. Unaccountably, this is one of the few Altman's I'd never seen (now rectified) about a pair of degenerate gamblers (Gould and Segal) who come into a phenomenal winning streak. Altman does a good job of sidestepping most of the clichés, and it's a treat to see California (and Reno) as it was in the early 70s. And in 'scope!



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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« #18102 : January 16, 2019, 02:01:51 PM »

California Split (1974) - 8/10. Unaccountably, this is one of the few Altman's I'd never seen (now rectified) about a pair of degenerate gamblers (Gould and Segal) who come into a phenomenal winning streak. Altman does a good job of sidestepping most of the clichés, and it's a treat to see California (and Reno) as it was in the early 70s. And in 'scope!
It's one of my favorite Altman movies, only trailing The Long Goodbye and McCabe and Mrs. Miller. I always thought he was at his best when his subject matter was a little more constrained or focused and not an ensemble: a PI movie, a western, a hangout/road movie etc

Criterion was/is supposed to release this on bluray, hopefully there is some news soon. Speaking of Criterion, Police Story and Police Story II are going to be released:

https://www.criterion.com/boxsets/1554-police-story-police-story-2





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« #18103 : January 17, 2019, 07:37:00 AM »

One of my favorite Altmans, too. Really hoping for that Criterion release soon. Current DVD kinda sucks.

I've never seen the Police Story movies but I wanna buy that set.

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« #18104 : January 17, 2019, 08:06:09 AM »

"The Savage" (1952).  Starred Charleton Heston, about 9 minutes in looks like it was really him galloping bareback with the Indians chasing a herd of wild ponies, did not look like rear projection or a stuntman !!!

Charleton had survived a Crow massacre of his wagon train as a kid, was brought up by the Sioux, eventually had to decide where his loyalties fell. 

Milburn Stone was a cavalry soldier (before his Gunsmoke doctor days), Joan Taylor from Rifleman was Charleton's Indian sister, and Sussan Morrow was quite hubba as the sister of a cavalry officer.

I'd never heard of this film before.


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