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TV & Media Non-Trek television, movies, books, music, etc.

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Old March 23 2010, 07:00 PM   #376
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Harvey wrote: View Post
64. Notes on a Scandal [A-]

I bought this film at Blockbuster over a year ago for 3 dollars, but for some reason only got around to watching it this afternoon. I thought it was marvelous, for the most part. Barbara's sexual longing for Sheba is very palpable, but never overplayed. Glass' score is wonderful--at times, it plays to the composer's strengths and at times, it was much more dramatic and thematic than I would have expected from the composer. At times, I thought that the film, visually, relied on a cliche or two, but listening to the film was a joy--the interplay between music, sound effects, and dialogue (including Barbara's wonderful, unreliable narration) was quite well-done.

Shutter Island tonight, and then 2012 if I'm feeling self-destructive.
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Loved Notes on a Scandal. I saw it basically for the Glass score (big fan) but it had solid performances and excellent writing. Judi Dench's incredibly cynical bitterness is a joy to listen to.
I agree with both of you. I really loved Notes on a Scandal, and I loved Philip Glass's score just as much. In fact, reading these posts has made me listen to the score once more on my iTunes.
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Old March 23 2010, 07:04 PM   #377
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

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I loved the last line by DiCaprio, suggesting...well, I won't say in fear of spoilers and because I am too lazy to use spoiler tags.
I think Kegg best summarized this, but I was so-so on the film until that last line. It was weird, because I was enjoying the film up until that point, but that line really encapsulated everything for me, which is just stunning how one single line can affect someone's viewership on such a drastic level.

Even the overbearing music seemed to make sense given the context that I was able to view everything after the ending. Yes, it was melodramatic (and not just the music), but I feel like unlike a lot of recent twists, this one actually made sense and actually gave the film an entirely different meaning, whereas twists in the past have gone out of their way to either detract from a certain film, I felt like after watching the ending I was able to get something away from Shutter Island I didn't know I was getting.

Without that ending, Shutter Island is a completely different film.
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Old March 23 2010, 08:44 PM   #378
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

The whole movie was drolly melodramatic. The dream and flashback sequences especially.

I loved that.

But yes, the ending does change everything (and from what I've read, is different from the book's ending too.)
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Old March 23 2010, 08:48 PM   #379
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Oh, Really? I thought it was supposed to be a pretty faithful adaptation of the novel.
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Old March 23 2010, 09:08 PM   #380
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Also, I wouldn't say Shutter Island is a return to form for Martin Scorsese, since that would imply his recent works have been lackluster. Gangs of New York and The Departed were both vintage Scorsese, showcasing his virtuoso talent at crafting complicated, dense stories that are ultra-violent. The Aviator was more in line with some of Scorsese's films that deviate from "classic Scorsese", such as The Last Temptation of Christ or The Age of Innocence.

In fact, I think Shutter Island is if anything more in line with Cape Fear, but on a slightly more psychological level. Shutter Island feels like a Hitchcock or Polanski picture, drenching the film with atmospheric dread and putting the character in a situation where everyone knows something he doesn't, creating (in this case) a (false) sense of paranoia. It's probably the most Hitchcockian of all the films he's ever done.
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Old March 23 2010, 09:20 PM   #381
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

I think Kegg was using "return to form" in the sense that Scorsese had directed a new picture that was actually good, as opposed to a new picture that was a return to his usual style. And I'd say about the same thing, except I think The Aviator is also pretty good. Hated The Departed though.
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Old March 23 2010, 09:38 PM   #382
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

I loved The Departed. It wasn't the best film of 2006 (that honor goes to United 93), but it was time for Martin Scorsese to finally win Best Director, so I see it as a celebration of all his previous work.

The Aviator is very strong, and Leonardo DiCaprio does 'obsessed genius' well, and it is a gorgeously looking film, but I like Scorsese's darker films more.
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Old March 23 2010, 11:33 PM   #383
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

I still think The Lives of Others was the best film of 2006, but so it goes.

As far as the novel goes, which I have not read,

Harvey wrote: View Post
I think Kegg was using "return to form" in the sense that Scorsese had directed a new picture that was actually good,
Yep. I was not pleased with The Departed, at all.

I'd agree also that Shutter Island is most closely related to Cape Fear of all his previous films, a picture which is also luridly colorful, influenced by classic film (more obviously in Cape Fear's case, but I think there's a whiff of noir in Shutter Island), and highly melodramatic.
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Old March 24 2010, 12:01 AM   #384
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The Lives of Others. Great movie. I also rather enjoyed Volver, The Good Shepherd, Notes on a Scandal, United 93, Children of Men, and Thank You For Smoking that year. Hard to choose a best film, though if I had to, it would probably be Children of Men.
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Old March 24 2010, 01:44 AM   #385
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

JacksonArcher wrote: View Post
I loved The Departed. It wasn't the best film of 2006 (that honor goes to United 93), but it was time for Martin Scorsese to finally win Best Director, so I see it as a celebration of all his previous work.

The Aviator is very strong, and Leonardo DiCaprio does 'obsessed genius' well, and it is a gorgeously looking film, but I like Scorsese's darker films more.
I quite liked The Departed. It's a worthy choice to finally get his Oscar, though it's not his best work (but the Oscar isn't "Best Picture of Martin Scorsese's Career", it's "Best Picture of 2006"; it's not competing against Scorsese's older films, at least, not officially). It's also, even adjusted for inflation, Scorsese's highest-grossing film.

The Aviator was also very good, though it kind of deflates a bit after Blanchett leaves (much, I suppose, like Hughes' life).
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Old March 24 2010, 07:36 AM   #386
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

Went & saw How to Train Your Dragon for free earlier tonight. The pass said it would be 3D, but the theater showed it in 2D.

Still, a cute movie, with a few laughs & I'd be interested in goin' to see it again in 3D, for the flyin' sequences & the island attack.

Hopin' to see Clash of the Titans for free next...
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Old March 24 2010, 08:09 AM   #387
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

CaptainCanada wrote: View Post
I quite liked The Departed. It's a worthy choice to finally get his Oscar, though it's not his best work (but the Oscar isn't "Best Picture of Martin Scorsese's Career", it's "Best Picture of 2006"; it's not competing against Scorsese's older films, at least, not officially).
I am well aware of this. However, Scorsese had been nominated numerous times and at that point I think had Scorsese lost again it would have caused some mild outrage.

He has built a very long, incredibly strong repertoire and I think winning for The Departed was not so much winning because it was his best work (like you said, it isn't) but because of his long-standing contribution to film and his illustrious career. There's a reason why George Lucas, Steven Spielberg and Francis Ford Coppola walked out on the stage for the Best Director category during that ceremony.

Harvey wrote:
The Lives of Others. Great movie. I also rather enjoyed Volver, The Good Shepherd, Notes on a Scandal, United 93, Children of Men, and Thank You For Smoking that year. Hard to choose a best film, though if I had to, it would probably be Children of Men.
All terrific films. I was shocked and upset that Children of Men wasn't nominated for Best Picture that year, but I think at that point there was still a stigma against science-fiction getting nominated for the big awards with the Academy. I hope the Best Picture nominations for Avatar and District 9 will eviscerate that stigma and allow quality science-fiction films (like Moon) to be considered once more.
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Old March 24 2010, 07:12 PM   #388
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

The Messenger (2009) [B]

I liked this film for about 3/4ths of the way through. The acting is great, and seeing the duo Harrelson and Foster go around having to tell people their loved ones have died in Iraq is heartbreaking. However; near the end, the movie starts to kind of fall apart. Still good though.
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Old March 24 2010, 07:30 PM   #389
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

64. Notes on a Scandal [A-]
65. Shutter Island [B-]
66. Gosford Park [A]

I went into this film with little knowledge of it, besides the fact that it has a wonderful cast and the late Robert Altman was the director. I have to say, I enjoyed it immensely. The DVD case relentlessly sells the movie as a murder mystery, but it's really a movie about the class system in a British manor in the 1930s. The murder itself doesn't occur until 80 has gone by, and the killers are never even suspected by the police. Honestly, I can't think of a better way I could have spent yesterday evening. I'm glad I finally took the time to see it. I found it truly exceptional in balancing an ensemble--every time I began to wonder where one of the film's 35 or so characters went, they popped up back on screen.
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Old March 25 2010, 04:32 PM   #390
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Re: Movies Seen in 2010

45. City Lights (B+)

James Berardinelli's #4 of all time, and generally one of the most acclaimed American films, City Lights is the iconic Charlie Chaplin film, and more generally the iconic silent film (though it makes limited use of sound effects, though not dialogue). If you're going to start anywhere with a genre, might as well start at the top. I enjoyed it overall. Discussion of this movie inevitably hypes the final scene, which is indeed nicely done, but it probably suffers from that kind of hype. Physical comedy isn't generally my main area of interest, but Chaplin's stuff is as "witty" as that sort of stuff gets; most of it got a smile. A lot of the individual bits feel kind of strung together and not relevant to the plot (of course, the Tramp is the original "SNL character goes feature-length" scenario), but the story overall is simple and nicely told. When WALL-E was released, a lot of people compared it to City Lights, and you can see the comparison (when it comes to dialogue-less situations, Pixar and Kim Ki-Duk are the modern masters). It's kind of interesting to consider how technical limitations become a storytelling genre.
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