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Old July 8 2010, 05:58 AM   #586
zakkrusz
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Updates (in bold):
Aliens in the Attic (6)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Big Battle (7)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Roots of Ambition (8)
Armored Trooper Votoms: The Last Red Shoulder (8)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Pailsen Files: The Movie (7)
Boondock Saints (10)
Boondock Saints: All Saint's Day (9)
The Book of Eli (8)
Cargo (7)
Cencoroll (8)
Les Chevaliers du Ciel (8)
Clash of the Titans (2010) (8)
Crazy Heart (6)
Dante's Inferno (2010) (7)
Date Night (7)
District 9 (8)
Eden of the East: The King of Eden (9)
The Edge of Darkness (9)
Evangelion 2.0: You Can [Not] Advance (9)
The Fantastic Mr. Fox (8)
G-9 (6)
Gamer (6)
Green Zone (7)
Higurashi no Naka Koroni Chikai (7)
Inglorious Bastards (7)
Iron Man 2 (9)
Jonah Hex (6)
The Killers (6)
The Last Airbender (8)
Law Abiding Citizen (9)
The Lovely Bones (6)
Lupin the 3rd VS Detective Konan (7)
Naruto Shippuden Movie 3 (8)
Oblivion Island (6)
Oldboy (9)
Pandorum (7)
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (8)
Street Fighter IV: The Ties That Bind (8)
Summer Wars (9)
Sword For Truth (6)
Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Lagann-hen (8)
They Were 11 (9)
The Uninvited (7)
Wicked City (8)
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Old July 10 2010, 03:08 AM   #587
Temis the Vorta
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Got a couple interesting additions!

The Informant! - Kudos to Matt Damon. It's astounding to think that's the same actor who plays Jason Bourne. In this movie, he plays a character so utterly pathetic and dweeby, I don't think Steve Carrell could have done it better. Fun movie, if somewhat draggy in places, but I guess it's hard to make a really rip-snortin' flick about the agricultural by-products industry.

The Crazies
(2009) - Great, taut, no-nonsense thriller. Kinda reminded me of Drag Me to Hell (minus the comedy) in the way it focuses on thrills and not gore. Unlike other horror movies, where you despise the dumbass characters and want them dead, the characters in this movie do reasonably intelligent things and are sympathetic enough for you to root for them.

Timothy Olyphant is always great and it's too bad Radha Mitchell's career never really took off into big movie roles. Her IMDB listing is a whole lotta meh, since Pitch Black. Why can't action movies have intelligent leading ladies? Instead we always get the likes of Megan Fox.

However, I'm a bit confused about the ending:

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Old July 10 2010, 04:33 PM   #588
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

60. Brief Encounter (B+)
61. Iron Man 2 (B+)
62. The Lion in Winter (A-)
63. Unforgiven (A+)
64. Harry Brown (B+)
65. Toy Story 3 (A+)
66. Letters from Iwo Jima (A+)

Oh, Clint Eastwood, is there anything you can't do?

Western films from the Japanese perspective are pretty rare compared to ones told from the German perspective (which are themselves not especially common in and of themselves). Cultural differences I imagine, plus the absence of big Japanese-American stars who could headline such a project. The biggest exception that comes to mind is the Japanese segments of Tora! Tora! Tora! (one of my favourites). It must have been a challenge to direct a film in a language you don't speak.

It's to the film's advantage that the cast is full of unknown Japanese actors, apart from Ken Watanabe, who is, appropriately, the general (and even he's not exactly Tom Cruise). Actually, I found it almost jarring after so much time with these unknowns to see one of Kuribayashi's flashbacks in the US with character actor Mark Moses (Desperate Housewives, Mad Men). Given what we know about the Japanese military, you start out the film with the understanding that most of the characters, and maybe all of them, will die, which sets a very fatalistic tone and gets your hopes up every time somebody considers actually surrendering.

The most interesting point of the film is its complex depiction of the Japanese army as it faces the certainty of defeat. Per custom, their only recourse is to die, either by suicide or suicidal charge, which some eagerly embrace; but most of them basically seem to be peer-pressured into it. It's a very humanistic portrayal.
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Old July 11 2010, 07:20 PM   #589
Harvey
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

137. Broadcast News [B ]
138. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels [B ]
139. Robocop 2 [C-]
140. The A-Team [C+]
141. Rushmore [A-]
142. In the Loop [B+]
143. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan [A-]
144. Not Quite Hollywood [B+]
145. Mallrats [C-]
146. North by Northwest [A]
147. Chasing Amy [A-]
148. Free Enterprise [A]
149. The History Boys [B ]
150. The Sandlot [A-]
151. Three Days of the Condor [C+]
152. The Day of the Jackal [A-]
153. Predators [B-]
154. The Karate Kid [C-]
155. Top Secret! [C-]

The Day of the Jackal: Now here's a thriller that's more like it. I haven't read the book, but judging from my brother's recollection and what I've found on wikipedia, it's a pretty close adaptation of the Frederick Forsyth novel of the same name. Edward Fox is brilliant in the role (the film may have made little money, but it's all the better for having not cast a star like Michael Caine or Jack Nicholson). His character is essentially a cipher, but the way he meticulously executes his plan (until, of course, the end) is so fascinating to watch that it doesn't matter. The only place where it loses points is the casting of French characters with British actors, which undermines the almost documentary feel that the film tries to create through the use of handheld photography, and an absence of film score (only diagetic music is used). Still, it's a minor complaint.

Predators: It doesn't break new ground, but the premise (a bunch of badasses from Earth are forced to work together to survive against a triad of Predators on another planet) is exploited to its fullest. The cast is good, particularly Adrian Brody, who might be an unlikely action hero, but he fits right in here.

The Karate Kid: Mediocre in most respects (just what kind of job is a middle-class single mom from Detroit doing in Beijing that is so important that the Chinese would pay to have her brought out to their country and put up in an apartment, on an apparently permanent basis?), this is best as a piece that finally lets Jackie Chan show of his acting chops in an English-language film. Jaden Smith is still a little brat for most of the film's run time and too young for his budding romance to have much resonance, but with his dad working behind the scenes, he'll probably continue to be working as a child actor regardless of reception. Of course, I walked into it free, so I can't complain too loudly.

Top Secret!: I forgot to add this one, which makes sense, considering my reaction to it. Unlike Airplane! it has almost no momentum. The film is a collection of sight gags, some funnier than others, but it's barely a movie.
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Old July 12 2010, 09:50 PM   #590
Harvey
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

137. Broadcast News [B ]
138. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels [B ]
139. Robocop 2 [C-]
140. The A-Team [C+]
141. Rushmore [A-]
142. In the Loop [B+]
143. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan [A-]
144. Not Quite Hollywood [B+]
145. Mallrats [C-]
146. North by Northwest [A]
147. Chasing Amy [A-]
148. Free Enterprise [A]
149. The History Boys [B ]
150. The Sandlot [A-]
151. Three Days of the Condor [C+]
152. The Day of the Jackal [A-]
153. Predators [B-]
154. The Karate Kid [C-]
155. Top Secret! [C-]
156. Ride with the Devil [A]

Ride with the Devil: This 1999 civil war film by Ang Lee apparently went mostly unseen and unheralded when it was released. That's a shame--if it isn't a masterpiece, I'd wager it comes awfully close. The cast is brilliant, including Jeffrey Wright as a particularly standout, but even Jewel, hardly a master thespian, is acceptable in her role. The period atmosphere is detailed and spot on. And the gorgeous cinematography and a tasteful score perfectly capture the film's mood.
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Old July 12 2010, 10:04 PM   #591
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

So far?

I've watched far too many movies at home to list here, so I'm just going to stick to ones I've seen at theaters:

The A-Team
Twilight: Eclipse
Goldfinger
Thunderball
The Goonies
The Naked Gun
The Naked Gun 2 1/2
The Untouchables
Iron Man 2
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Old July 15 2010, 01:52 AM   #592
Harvey
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

137. Broadcast News [B ]
138. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels [B ]
139. Robocop 2 [C-]
140. The A-Team [C+]
141. Rushmore [A-]
142. In the Loop [B+]
143. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan [A-]
144. Not Quite Hollywood [B+]
145. Mallrats [C-]
146. North by Northwest [A]
147. Chasing Amy [A-]
148. Free Enterprise [A]
149. The History Boys [B ]
150. The Sandlot [A-]
151. Three Days of the Condor [C+]
152. The Day of the Jackal [A-]
153. Predators [B-]
154. The Karate Kid [C-]
155. Top Secret! [C-]
156. Ride with the Devil [A]
157. As Good As It Gets [B+]
158. Predator [C]
159. Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation [D+]

As Good As It Gets: This film has the drawback of having to make one of the most preposterous screen couples I've seen (Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt) work, but it does a pretty good job doing so. This is the second James L. Brooks film I've seen (excluding The Simpsons Movie) and it marks a significant improvement over Broadcast News (which I liked, but wasn't in love with), especially when it comes to pacing. It even reminded me of when I could take Cuba Gooding, Jr. somewhat seriously as an actor. At times it can be a bit sentimental, and the happy ending may be a little forced, but the dialogue and performances (including several surprising cameos) are spot-on, and better paced this time.

Predator: Since I saw the third installment in the series this weekend, I felt it appropriate to return to the original (and, time permitting, the sequel, too). In the end, I have mixed feelings about the whole affair. Basically, Predator is three movies in one: a special ops movie, a slasher film, and a primal, jungle fight film. The special ops portion dominates the first 45 minutes, and this is too bad--the text commentary mentions Platoon and Apocalypse Now as influences, but what we end up with is more like a macho version of The Delta Force. For what it is, it's well-directed, but you'd never get anything resembling a good performance out of a cast of muscle-men this preposterous (Shane Black being the odd man out in the line-up, but he's hardly even a professional actor). There's some silly nonsense about Arnold's character being honorable (he only does rescue missions) before he mounts a rescue mission that has more in common with an all-out invasion. So much for stealth.

Once the movie gets this out of the way (and it takes longer than it should), it shifts into a more interesting (but still, at times, clumsy) slasher picture as the Predator slowly hunts down Dutch's Special Ops team one by one. We still don't care very much about these characters, who are little more than a bunch of super-muscular macho ciphers, but at least it is entertaining. This portion of the film goes by surprisingly fast, actually. Besides Arnold, the rest of his team doesn't stand a chance.

Once that third of the movie gets over with, Predator moves onto its final act, which is probably one of the big reasons the movie is still remembered. In a sequence more or less dialogue-free, Arnold and the Predator engage in combat that is nothing short of mythic with its primal and ritualistic tone. Arnold is best as a physical actor, and the movie finally lets him be solely that. It's a terrific sequence and it raises my opinion of the film significantly.

I know I'm in the minority when it comes to this, so I'll leave it there for the moment. But outside of the Predator design, Predator isn't that great of a film, though it looks like a masterpiece when compared to...

Starship Troopers 2: In a film that has nothing to do with Heinlein's book and little to do with Verhoeven's superior movie, there isn't any reason to keep watching if you aren't interested in Richard Burgi's performance or an ending that allows for the only instance of satire and irony in this low-budget sequel. In the self-congraulatory making-of feature, the makers praise the digital photgraphy's filmic look (it looks like video), the performances (outside of Burgi, they're horrible), the effects (cheap and sparse...it's no surprise the trailer ["And this time, it's different!"] relies so heavily on stock footage from the original) and the stunts (they're nothing special).

I hope the third film is better.
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Old July 17 2010, 03:56 AM   #593
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

It is, actually.
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Old July 17 2010, 04:15 AM   #594
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

60. Brief Encounter (B+)
61. Iron Man 2 (B+)
62. The Lion in Winter (A-)
63. Unforgiven (A+)
64. Harry Brown (B+)
65. Toy Story 3 (A+)
66. Letters from Iwo Jima (A+)
67. Inception (A-)

Main discussion over in the forum thread, but another intricately-plotted Christopher Nolan film; the fairly thin characters and lack of any especial thematic depth keep it from being a magnum opus, but still well worth seeing.
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Old July 17 2010, 10:23 AM   #595
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

I don't recall them watching to any movies, they were too busy trying to repair the Discovery.

Sorry, that's the best I could do. You try mining for comic inspiration from that movie by googling 2010.
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Old July 19 2010, 12:36 AM   #596
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Movies Seen in 2010
Duplicity - C-
The Hurt Locker - A
Moon - A
The Princess and the Frog - B
Crazy Heart - B+
Julie & Julia - A-
A Serious Man - A
Fargo - A
The Blind Side - B-
The Informant! - C
The Big Lebowski - A
How to Train Your Dragon 3D - A
Iron Man 2 - C-
The Men Who Stare at Goats - D-
Toy Story 3 - A+
Knight and Day - B+
Inception - A
Despicable Me - C

Inception - Awesome movie. The visuals were stunning, it really did remind me of the Matrix, and Nolan once again brings out a great movie. Not really sure how much to say without spoiling anything, but I will say it's a movie I might see again when it comes out on DVD because I think it can get even better on repeated viewings.

Despicable Me - This movie was stupid. There were some delightful bits, but for the most part it was silly harmless summer fare. Did like that the heart was in the right place at the end though.
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Old July 19 2010, 09:34 PM   #597
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Updates (in bold):
Aliens in the Attic (6)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Big Battle (7)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Roots of Ambition (8)
Armored Trooper Votoms: The Last Red Shoulder (8)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Pailsen Files: The Movie (7)
Boondock Saints (10)
Boondock Saints: All Saint's Day (9)
The Book of Eli (8)
Cargo (7)
Cencoroll (8)
Les Chevaliers du Ciel (8)
Clash of the Titans (2010) (8)
Crazy Heart (6)
Dante's Inferno (2010) (7)
Date Night (7)
District 9 (8)
Eden of the East: The King of Eden (9)
The Edge of Darkness (9)
Evangelion 2.0: You Can [Not] Advance (9)
The Fantastic Mr. Fox (8)
G-9 (6)
Gamer (6)
Green Zone (7)
Higurashi no Naka Koroni Chikai (7)
Inglorious Bastards (7)
Iron Man 2 (9)
Jonah Hex (6)
The Killers (6)
The Last Airbender (8)
Law Abiding Citizen (9)
The Lovely Bones (6)
Lupin the 3rd VS Detective Konan (7)
Lupin the 3rd: The Secret of Mamo (9)
Lupin the 3rd: The Last Job
Naruto Shippuden Movie 3 (8)
Oblivion Island (6)
Oceans (Documentary/ Rating is NA)
Oldboy (9)
Pandorum (7)
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (8)
Street Fighter IV: The Ties That Bind (8)
Summer Wars (9)
Sword For Truth (6)
Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Lagann-hen (8)
They Were 11 (9)
The Uninvited (7)
Wicked City (8)
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Old July 19 2010, 10:12 PM   #598
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Ben-Hur (1959)

Predators (2010)
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Old July 20 2010, 01:04 AM   #599
Harvey
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

160. Predator 2 [B-]
161. The Mask [D+]
162. Insomnia [B+]
163. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest [A-]

Some quick, incoherent (probably) thoughts...

Predator 2: Blasphemy once again, but I think the sequel is superior to the original. Once again, the movie comes down to the last act's confrontation between the lead (this time, Danny Glover, who is sort of miscast, but manages to fit the role as the film goes on) and the Predator, but unlike the original, the first two acts are pretty engaging. It's a little 1980s, but I like the texture provided by the film's near-future Los Angeles that's just a little different than the present (Jamaican gangs, global warming making everyone have to carry around water, licensed prostitution). I also like the diverse cast--heck, it's probably the most diverse cast I've seen from an 80s action movie.

The Mask: When I was eight, I remember liking this movie a lot. I would parade around the house echoing the Mask's catchphrases of "smokin!" and "somebody stop me!" Alas, I am no longer eight. The movie is rarely funny, the plot is nonsensical, and I find myself having little patience for Jim Carrey here.

Insomnia: This is a terrific thriller (this is the second time I've seen it), but it loses points for an awfully glaring plot contrivance: Hilary Swank's lucky discovery of an old newspaper with a story about the corruption probe into the LA Homicide Department.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest: For some reason I've missed this one until now. I was struck by a few things. First, the cast is terrific, with quite a few actors (Christopher Lloyd, Brad Dourif, Danny DeVito) who would go onto much bigger things in smaller roles. Second, I was struck by Nurse Ratched. She's built up to be one of the great villains in screen history, but with the exception of what happens at the end (she ruins all of Brad Dourif's progress in order to implicate Jack Nicholson so he can be lobotomized) she's a little in love with power, but hardly evil.
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Old July 25 2010, 07:31 PM   #600
zakkrusz
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Location: The Wired
Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Updates (in bold):
Aliens in the Attic (6)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Big Battle (7)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Roots of Ambition (8)
Armored Trooper Votoms: The Last Red Shoulder (8)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Pailsen Files: The Movie (7)
Boondock Saints (10)
Boondock Saints: All Saint's Day (9)
The Book of Eli (8)
Cargo (7)
Cencoroll (8)
Les Chevaliers du Ciel (8)
Clash of the Titans (2010) (8)
Crazy Heart (6)
Dante's Inferno (2010) (7)
Date Night (7)
District 9 (8)
Eden of the East: The King of Eden (9)
The Edge of Darkness (9)
Evangelion 2.0: You Can [Not] Advance (9)
The Fantastic Mr. Fox (8)
Fist of the North Star (1995) (4)
G-9 (6)
Gamer (6)
Green Zone (7)
Higurashi no Naka Koroni Chikai (7)
Inception (10)
Inglorious Bastards (7)
Iron Man 2 (9)
Jonah Hex (6)
The Killers (6)
The Last Airbender (8)
Law Abiding Citizen (9)
The Lovely Bones (6)
Lupin the 3rd: First Contact (7)
Lupin the 3rd VS Detective Konan (7)
Lupin the 3rd: The Secret of Mamo (9)
Lupin the 3rd: The Last Job
Naruto Shippuden Movie 3 (8)
Oblivion Island (6)
Oceans (Documentary/ Rating is NA)
Oldboy (9)
Pandorum (7)
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (8)
Street Fighter IV: The Ties That Bind (8)
Summer Wars (9)
Sword For Truth (6)
Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Lagann-hen (8)
They Were 11 (9)
The Uninvited (7)
Wicked City (8)
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