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Old July 26 2011, 01:23 PM   #586
23skidoo
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt 2 is the first movie I've gone to see in the theater this year. A+ as far as being a movie goes (though it's not the best of the films, IMO), but a few weeks back I posted a thread about theatres making 2-D films look dingy and dark because of using 3-D projector lenses to show them, and that was definitely the case with Harry Potter. I'm hoping to see Captain America (in 2D) this week or next, and if the same thing happens that's going to be it for me seeing movies in the theatre, because I'm not paying $13-14 to get a headache, whether it's 2-D or 3-D.

Alex
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Old July 26 2011, 07:29 PM   #587
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

105. Trouble in Paradise (B)
106. Footlight Parade (C+)
107. Green Lantern (C)

Trouble in Paradise: Perhaps Ernest Lubitsch's most well-known film, it's a good screwball comedy made in the pre-code era, but not a great one. The ending, for one thing, is totally preposterous. It's as if everyone has forgotten the entirety of the movie in order to satisfy the need for a happy ending -- Colet (the rich baroness) lets Monescu (the master thief) steal from her, and in turn Lilly (the master theif's accomplice) immediately takes Monescu back, despite him having fallen in love (and confessed this love to Lilly) with Colet.

Footlight Parade: This is a decent musical comedy starring James Cagney with Busby Berkeley choreographed musical numbers. It's pretty bottom-heavy with the dance sequences, though, saving all four big set pieces until the very end of the movie, one after another. After two, the movie left me feeling exhausted, but it just kept going with two more after that! The characters are more or less abandoned during these sequences, too, which means they're mostly (stylish) padding to bring the movie in at feature length. Of course, it's these sequences that people remember today, but the rest of the movie, while formulaic, works just as well if not better.

Green Lantern: Given the terrible reviews, this was surprisingly mediocre, although that's only faint praise, I suppose. Basically, the same beats you've seen played out in a dozen other superhero movies that tell an origin story, only with less excitement or style than any of the good films out of that bunch. I really dug the space opera milieu, but the characters were so thin that it didn't matter much in the end. Also, I was put off by the terrible 3D (it was a 2D movie most of the time) and the rather silly error of putting the asteroid belt between the Earth and the sun at the very end.

125 movies so far this year...
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Old July 27 2011, 01:31 AM   #588
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

Damn, Mark Strong was a really fantastic villain in a summer movie this year. He just exuded some neat, understated menace. That film was of course:

The Guard
Which was bleeding hilarious. Most fun film of the summer? Definitely.

By the other McDonagh, (the brother of the fellow behind In Bruges) it's got a sharp comedic wit that can be pretty black. The opening minutes mercilessly satirize one of the bigger public concerns here, deflating the melodramatic advertisements I saw just before the film with grim glee.

Brendan Gleeson walks away with the movie as country gardai with a gift for stubbornly inappropriate wit, debauchery, and policework. Don Cheadle does anchor the film in a way that might make it more accessible for non-Irish audiences, though, but he's mostly obliged to play the sensible, sane, reasonable American straight man to the peculiar comedic insanity that most of the Irish characters indulge in the film.

I had a blast, anyway.

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans

I haven't seen the original Bad Lieutenant, but I popped this in after discovering to my surprise I owned it (I don't remember, it was probably a gift based on the reliable idea that one can't go wrong with Herzog).

It's ... alright. There's individual moments of lunacy that have a strong Herzog air - "His soul is still dancing" is easily the best moment in the film - and most of it hinges on Nicholas Cage's deranged performance (which makes the trust authority figures continue to place in Cage increasingly implausible and, in the end, nicely subversive).


The Hangover Part II/Horrible Bosses
Well, what? They're two films about three man-children, one of whom is the somewhat insane doofus who the other two sometimes only begrudingly tolerate, and they go trashing about, getting into trouble, having tantrums, and wacky hijinks. They blurred together almost immediately.

Neither film would I have saught out on my own. Neither film is really very good - though Horrible Bosses is better, mostly for some good scenes of the bosses behaving like jerks. That film could have been better if it was crueler, it settles for prankish buffoonerry more then I'd care for. Also it gets bonus points for the unintentional humour I got out of Wendell Pierce playing a cop.

Overall they're forgettable, they leave a rather bad taste in one's mouth at the end, there are some laughs. I would have rather not watched them but they're not terrible movies.

A Seperation

Low-key arthouse film, the kind that focuses a lot on naturalistic performances and the mundane nature of daily life to draw out the humanity - petty, inquisitive, haggling - of the cast. That's not to say there isn't quite a bit of drama in this film - we start off with an attempt at divorce - which is surprisingly amicable and mutual - only to meet a few shall we say complications. And a little later things really hit the fan. I enjoyed it, but I am a sucker for films like this.
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Old July 27 2011, 03:38 AM   #589
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


90. The Apartment (A-)
91. Captain America: The First Avenger (A-)
92. Ordinary People (A-)
93. Days of Heaven (B+)

This is the second Terrence Malick film I've seen, the first being The New World on DVD some years ago. My impression of that film was that it was beautifully shot but distant and hard to get into. That largely applies to this film too. Malick is much more humanistic than Kubrick, but the same detached feel persists. That's obviously a deliberate artistic choice, but not one that particularly works for me. The performances of the leads are all strong, within those limits, particularly Brooke Adams. The cinematography is incredible, though - you can see why it won the Oscar.
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Old July 27 2011, 06:27 AM   #590
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


Killers - Netflix Instant
Push - DVD rental
Ron White: Behavioral Problems - DVD rental
All*Star Superman - DVD rental
Captain America: The First Avenger - midnight screenin'
Dylan Dog: Dead of Night - DVD rental

Out today, I got the latest from Brandon Routh (Superman Returns, Scott Pilgrim vs the World). It reminded me a lot of The Dresden Files, to be honest...

Routh is Dylan Dog; he used to be the human representative among the supernatural community of New Orleans and gets dragged back into that world when a werewolf murders a monster hunter.

Sam Worthington (Superman Returns, Being Human) is Dylan's assistant/partner who becomes a zombie.

And Taye Diggs plays a vampire that looks like a Buffy reject.

The movie was less than good. Ya can see how they wanted to make a good movie, seems like a lot of effort went into it, and there were some good ideas, but it just didn't come together.

At least it was ubercheap to rent.
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Old July 28 2011, 07:28 PM   #591
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


90. The Apartment (A-)
91. Captain America: The First Avenger (A-)
92. Ordinary People (A-)
93. Days of Heaven (B+)
94. Yojimbo (A-)

The filmed that Sergio Leone ripped off to make A Fistfull of Dollars, which I saw earlier this year and rated at B+. Like its remake, it's a lean film, but Kurosawa's is the far superior production. Just one of its advantages it he lack of terrible dubbing. There's more (intentional) humour to this than there was to the Eastwood version, as well. The time period of this is interesting, since it seems like it could take place at virtually any period in Japan's history, until partway through when one of the evil brothers returns from his travels with a 19th century pistol.
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Old July 28 2011, 09:44 PM   #592
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

^
The entire film is very much meant to be set to the death of the samurai age (hence the pistol); but the sequel Sanjuro is pretty timeless.

Gilda
It crossed my mind that seeing Rita Hayworth, a Latina actress, dolled up to play the white American girl in a Latin country was mildly odd - but no matter. The lighting in this film is stark, if unsubtle (characters can be bathed in darkness to illustrate a point), and the plot's sheer pot boiler noir, with lots of snappy, witty dialogue and smoldering tension at the sidelines. Lot of fun.
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Old July 29 2011, 03:11 AM   #593
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


90. The Apartment (A-)
91. Captain America: The First Avenger (A-)
92. Ordinary People (A-)
93. Days of Heaven (B+)
94. Yojimbo (A-)
95. Tangled (A)

First rewatch since #48 on my list. Had a few friends over for movie night, and the girls voted en masse for this.

Looking at my 2011 list, I see that I rated this an A-. I could persuaded to put that up to A on rewatch; it holds up exceptionally well. The animation is beautiful, and the character designs are superb. In a lot of ways, I bet Disney wishes they'd held off on releasing this till 2011; it would probably have taken the Best Animated Feature Oscar. The only thing keeping it from A+ status is Alan Menken's comparatively uninteresting songs; they're serviceable, but not up to the level of what he was producing in the 1990s.
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Old July 29 2011, 03:57 AM   #594
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

108. Tabloid (B+)
109. The King’s Speech (B)


Tabloid: The subject matter (a former beauty queen's search for true love which becomes a mad obsession that ends in insanity which played out in the tabloids) is slighter than most of the Errol Morris documentaries I've seen up to this point (i.e. a man wrongfully convicted in The Thin Blue Line), but the film is as engaging as ever. Morris has a sense of style that other documentary filmmakers lack, and even without many (or perhaps any -- it's been long enough since I saw this at a preview screening that I can't remember) of his signature re-enactments it still moves at a terrific pace and is filled with energy.

The King's Speech: A good movie, but outside of a few visual flourishes, it's little more than masterpiece theatre. Not nearly as good as The Social Network, either, but it won Best Picture anyway, and with the double whammy of being a British costume drama and being about a man overcoming a speech disorder, it really shouldn't shock or surprise me.

126 movies so far this year. My appointment as a TA this summer in a film course has ended, so I probably won't be seeing as many films now. Still a crazy amount, mind you, but not at least four a week.
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Old July 30 2011, 02:11 AM   #595
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


90. The Apartment (A-)
91. Captain America: The First Avenger (A-)
92. Ordinary People (A-)
93. Days of Heaven (B+)
94. Yojimbo (A-)
95. Tangled (A)
96. Cowboys and Aliens (B)

Discussed over in the SF/F review thread, but in brief: competent action story that lacks the great characterization necessary to go to the next level.
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Old July 30 2011, 05:35 PM   #596
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

Updates in Bold:

The Adjustment Bureau (8)
Afro Samurai: Resurrection (7)
Arashi no Yoru ni (One Stormy Night) (7)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Alone Again (7)
Armored Trooper Votoms: Finder (8)
Babylon 5: A Call to Arms (8)
Babylon 5: River of Souls (7)
Babylon 5: Thirdspace (7)
Black Swan (9)
Broken Blade 3: The Mark of the Assassin's Dagger (9)
Broken Blade 4: The Land of Disaster (9)
Broken Blade 5: Death's Horizon (9)
Broken Blade 6: Bastions of Sorrow (9)
Cowboys and Aliens (8)
Cutthroat Island (9)
Drive Angry (7)
Evangelion 2.22: You Can (Not) Advance (9)
Godkiller (6)
Green Lantern (8)
Hanna (8)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (8)
I Am Number Four (8)
Infernal Affairs (7)
Kamui (4)
The Garden of Sinners Movie 8: Epilogue (9)
Loups=Garous (8)
The Mechanic (2011) (9)
Mobile Suit Gundam 00: Awakeening of the Trailblazer (8)
Munto: The Movie (6)
Musashi Miyamoto (6)
Outlander (8)
Pirates of the Caribean: On Stranger Tides (9)
Priest (5)
Source Code (9)
Super 8 (8)
Thor (9)
Time of Eve (10)
Transformers: Dark of the Moon (9)
Unknown (7)
Versus (6)
X-Men: First Class (8)
Your Highness (3)
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Old July 30 2011, 06:03 PM   #597
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


60. Whiteout: C+
61. Passion Play: D+
62. Captain America: The First Avenger: A-
63. Marley & Me: A
64. Date Night: C+

Steve Carrell and Tina Fey comedy about a boring NJ couple who end up on a night of adventure. I like Steve and he was why I had this in my Netflix queue and I've always thought Fey was overrated by and large.

This movie had lengthy moments of any real scenes of humor. Oh, chuckles along the way but real bust out loud humor moments it lacked. Those are what I want in a funny film. Maybe I'm spoiled but the films like Wedding Crashers, 40yr Old and Hangover are the ones I'd pay to see in theaters.

Date Night, along with the handful of Sandler films I've seen the past few months only solidify why I don't spend good money to see comedy films in the theater.
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Old July 31 2011, 01:11 AM   #598
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


90. The Apartment (A-)
91. Captain America: The First Avenger (A-)
92. Ordinary People (A-)
93. Days of Heaven (B+)
94. Yojimbo (A-)
95. Tangled (A)
96. Cowboys and Aliens (B)
97. Crazy, Stupid, Love (A-)

Two theatrical releases in a weekend; can't recall the last time that happened.

Movies rarely surprise me. I'm good at picking the things I'm interested in and not seeing things that I won't like. This was getting reasonably good reviews, and I decided to see it even though I usually avoid the romantic comedy genre. I'm glad I saw, because this was excellent; the best in its genre I've seen in theatres in a long time. None of the characters feel like types, and considering this is the genre that mercilessly stripped all the charm out of numerous actresses through constant repetition of the same damn character, that's an achievement. The script is very well-constructed, and a major twist about one character's identity works really, really well.
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Old August 1 2011, 04:12 AM   #599
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011


61. Passion Play: D+
62. Captain America: The First Avenger: A-
63. Marley & Me: A
64. Date Night: C+
65. Frantic: B+
66. Presumed Innocent: A


I hadn't seen these two Harrison Ford films in a good 14-15yrs. So long in fact I got to be re-surprised by the ending to Presumed Innocent. Both are Roman Polanski and I was given this Blu-Ray double feature by a friend.

Good thing Frantic didn't come out now cause it reminded me at times of the critic panned film The Tourist. It's in a European local as two people traverse the country in pursuit or being pursued in the most passive aggressive ways at times. The critics missed it on the Tourist and I wonder, just a bit, what critics in the 80's thought of Frantic. Not curious enough to look though.

Presumed Innocent was another really good movie and I should've seen the ending coming but was just enjoying it too much that at some point I stopped trying to guess. Not intentionally, I just did.

It was good to see Ford in these more dramatic roles once again and I intend to get to Cowboys & Aliens soon.
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Old August 1 2011, 08:40 AM   #600
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Re: Movies Seen in 2011

HaventGotALife wrote: View Post
1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) - B
2. Amelie (2001) - A
3. A Simple Plan (1998) - A
4. City of God (2002)- C
5. Grey Gardens (1975) - C
6. Roger and Me (1989) - A+
7. Leaving Las Vegas (1995) - B
8. High Noon (1952) - D
9. Revanche (2008) - F
10. Love Liza (2002) - D-
11. My Sister's Keeper (2009) - A
12. The King's Speech (2010) - A
13. The Social Network (2010) - A+
14. Black Swan (2010) - A+
15. Psycho (1960) - A-
16. Reagan (2010) - A
17. Date Night (2010) - C-
18. Too Big to Fail (2011) - B+
19. The Captains (2011) - B+
20. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II - A
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