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

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Old March 24 2014, 06:55 AM   #166
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

Updates in Bold:

300: Rise of an Empire (10)
Black Rain (7)
Fairy Tail The Movie: The Phoenix Priestess (8)
Kara no Kyoukai: Mirai Fukuin (Garden of Sinners: Blessings for the Future) (9)
Divergent (7)
Heat (1995) (8)
Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (9)
Kick Ass 2 (8)
Lone Survivor (8)
Mass Effect: Paragon Lost (7)
Mission Impossible II (8)
Mission Impossible III (8)
Monuments Men (8)
Non-Stop (10)
Robocop (2014) (8)
Tales From Earthsea (5)
White House Down (7)
Wolf Children (8)

Running Total: 18
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Old March 24 2014, 08:20 AM   #167
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

Television Broadcasts
Cinema
DVDs
Streaming

1. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Seen this many times. It's still a great movie adaptation. 9/10.

2. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Same as above. 9/10.

3. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Rewatch. It's as great as LotR. 9/10.

4. Man of Steel
I found it excellent. Better than Superman Returns. On par with the first two Donner/Reeve films.

5. Meet the Robinsons
Still holds up. Rather enjoyable.

6. Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure
Same as above.

7. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World
Not really to my taste, but some parts are enjoyable. 5/10.

8. Tron Legacy
Still rather enjoyable. 8/10.

9. Tron
Streamed because the DVD seems to be in the Disney Vault. (and I haven't upgraded to Blu-Ray yet.)
Still a great story. Legacy is a great continuation. 8/10.

10. Pride & Prejudice (2005)
After re-watching the 1995 BCC production (after reading the novel) I decided to watch this movie. It's a slightly less faithful adaption, but I still enjoyed it. 8/10.

---

11. The Little Colonel
The earliest Shirley Temple film available on Google Play. The tale of a young girl whose grandfather (who fought on the South's side in the Civil War) had disowned her mother upon her running away with her northerner father... Quite enjoyable 7.8/10.
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Old March 25 2014, 03:48 AM   #168
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014


23. The Past (B+)

Asghar Farhadi's followup to his Oscar-winning 2011 A Separation, another family drama. The earlier film's male lead, Ali Mosaffa (the Iranian Michael Sheen), returns here, alongside The Artist's Berenice Bejo and Tahar Rahim, the star of the acclaimed French drama A Prophet (which I still haven't seen). There was a certain novelty value to A Separation (a look into Iranian daily life) which isn't present here, as we've changed locations to France; in general I found this a good film, but much less involving than its predecessor, though that was likely due at least in part to my being very tired when I saw it. Farhadi's thing seems to be to apply kitchen sink realism to what, on the surface, would seem like a very melodramatic plot.

Cinema: 10 (+1)
DVD: 5
Computer: 8
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Old March 25 2014, 05:48 PM   #169
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

34. Kill Your Darlings ★★

It's just boring. Oh well.
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Old March 25 2014, 09:52 PM   #170
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014







16. Up in the Air: B
17. 300: Rise of an Empire: B+
18. Splice: C-
19. Mirrors: B-
20. Pitch Perfect: A-


Mirrors:
The horror movie starring Keifer Sutherland and Paula Patton starts a bit slow. Somewhere in the middle act they finally start hemorrhaging details and letting the Ben(Keifer) use his cop skills to track down what the demons in the mirror-verse want. By the third act it's finally feeling like a horror film with a light exorcism slant to it. The ending sets it up for a sequel, which I see on IMDB they did but the write up sounds like it's largely just a rehash of the first. I might could get curious about picking up Ben's story on the wrong side of the glass, the fallout to his family being alone without him but as it is I'm not curious about the sequel that reads like just a remake of the one I just saw with minor changes.

Pitch Perfect:
This film is so much better than Bridesmaids. I hear them talked in almost the same sentence when it comes to recent great all female comedy films. I found Bridesmaids to be uninspiring myself and not worthy of the praise it gets. Pitch Pefect on the other hand is a really fun film. The chemistry of the leads felt much more in-tune with what I feel made Hangover so much fun. Bridesmaid leads lacked this.
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Old March 26 2014, 12:54 AM   #171
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014



39. Much Ado About Nothing (1993) (B+) - Great retelling of this Shakespeare tale with an interesting transatlantic cast that works really well.
40. Poison Ivy (E) - The young femme fatale story has been done many times, rarely as poorly as this. Uninteresting characters, poorly acted & shoddy direction.
41. Clear & Present Danger (A-) A film that is a joy to watch, never seems like the 2 plus hours it is and, for me, Harrison Ford embodies Jack Ryan and it's the best character he's portrayed more than once.
42. Serial Mom (A-) Not sure this was what I expected when I put in the blu-ray, but a joyously dark, riotously funny and well acted satire/spoof/inverse morality play... I don't know, none of these really fit. Don't think it'll be to everybody's taste though but I loved it.
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Old March 26 2014, 11:19 PM   #172
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

So far this year, I've seen the following movies in cinemas...

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom - A+
Frozen - A
Her - A
The Wind Rises (subtitled) - A-
Veronica Mars - A
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Old March 27 2014, 04:51 PM   #173
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014


Looney Tunes: Back in Action - DVD
The Crow: Wicked Prayer - Showtime Extreme
Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home - Starz Kids & Family
Wallace & Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit - HBO on Demand
Bullet to the Head - Cinemax on Demand
Howard the Duck - HBO Family
Battlefield Earth - HBO on Demand
Me, Myself & Irene - HBO on Demand
Bad Milo! - Netflix Instant
The Final Cut - Netflix Instant
Starship Troopers: Invasion - Netflix Instant
P!nk: The Truth About Love Tour - Netflix Instant
Saving Mr. Banks - DVD
Avengers Confidential: Black Widow / Punisher - DVD

Watchin' television shows & playin' videogames more than I've been watchin' movies.

STI is a CGI-animated film with language, violence & nudity that's in line with the live action films. Too bad it isn't a better story. A queen has taken over a ship and has targetted Earth...and our heroes have to stop the invasion.

..meh...

Followed that a few days later with a P!nk concert filmed in Melbourne. Looks like she puts on a good show, wouldn't mind seein' her live some day. And it was a lot better than the Brittney Spears concert video I watched awhile back, in that I recognized more of the songs performed.

Rented a couple of DVDs from Hasting's this week, too.
SMB was pretty good. My sister & I both liked it. I know its a sugar-coated version of history, but still, well worth watchin'.

The other DVD was AC:BW/P, from the same studio that put out Iron Man: Rise of the Technovore awhile back. This has Nick Fury forcin' Black Widow & the Punisher to team up and take down a rogue SHIELD agent who is creatin' a super army to auction to the highest bidder. Iron Man, Thor & Hulk only have cameos, so don't let the box art fool ya.

Got a plan to rent a couple more DVDs in the next few days.

But for now, I'm watchin' the second series of BBC's Luther via Netflix Instant.
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Old March 28 2014, 01:53 AM   #174
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014



43. When The Bough Breaks (E) - Not a bad premise, but done so much better than this, many times before and after. Ally Sheedy was just painful to watch in this, not that any of the cast was much better.
44. Leon The Professional (A) - Jean Russo just commands the screen, he has the presence of a real movie star. Gary Oldman oozes the same kind of charisma, just so compelling. Natalie Portman is amazing as the 12 year old Mathilda. The film is wonderfully shot, a cracking story that left me feeling a little uncomfortable about where it may go, all the way through.
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Old March 29 2014, 06:11 AM   #175
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

Updates in Bold:

300: Rise of an Empire (10)
Black Rain (7)
Fairy Tail The Movie: The Phoenix Priestess (8)
Kara no Kyoukai: Mirai Fukuin (Garden of Sinners: Blessings for the Future) (9)
Divergent (7)
Heat (1995) (8)
Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (9)
Kick Ass 2 (8)
Lone Survivor (8)
Mass Effect: Paragon Lost (7)
Mission Impossible II (8)
Mission Impossible III (8)
Monuments Men (8)
Non-Stop (10)
Robocop (2014) (8)
Tales From Earthsea (5)
White House Down (7)
The Wind Rises (7)
Wolf Children (8)

Running Total: 19
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Old March 29 2014, 07:03 AM   #176
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014


24. The Royal Tenenbaums (B+)

Before going to see Wes Anderson's newest film, I made a point of getting around to see what remains his most successful film to date. Anderson's intriciate visual and production style is on full display here, and is quite involving, though I found the story takes a while to get going. For much of the running time it's mainly just low-key humour, but it improves past the halfway point when events lead to a more serious look into the characters.

25. The Grand Budapest Hotel (A-)

I waffled a bit on rating this one, between A- and A. I settled on the former for now, but this one will require at least another viewing -- I'm not quite sure how some elements will ultimately settle with me. Moonrise Kingdom was my favourite film of 2012, and Anderson's followup has many of the same virtues, but it has a much more variable tone. The switch from whimsy to macabre can be extremely sudden, and I'm not sure it totally works, but, again, we'll see. Where Moonrise was bathed in retro nostalgia for 60s childhood exploits, this film is a lot sadder -- on the surface this is basically a Lubitsch comedy, but it's also an elegy for an older Europe, and even with the serial numbers filed off the film's version of the Nazis, the eventual fates of many of the characters set this apart from a normal comedy. Anderson has assembled a huge cast, most of whom aren't given overmuch to do (Lea Seydoux, for instance, has a walk-on part as a maid), with the principle exception and main attraction being Ralph Fiennes.

26. Room 237 (B-)

A documentary of various fans of The Shining who've fallen very far down the rabbit hole in theorizing about the messages Kubrick is trying to convey through the film. It's an intermittently fascinating depiction of the dangers of the human tendency toward pattern recognition, but apart from the guy who believes the whole film is Kubrick's veiled account of his feelings about being responsible for faking the Apollo 11 mission footage, the other theories generally aren't interesting enough to hold a person's attention consistently.

Cinema: 11 (+1)
DVD: 6 (+1)
Computer: 9 (+1)
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Old March 29 2014, 07:18 PM   #177
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

In a Theater:

On a TV:

30. Assault on Precinct 13 (1976) -- B+

I saw the remake of this seven or eight years ago, but never the original until now. It's not a perfect movie -- the pacing is a little slow, the performances aren't always sharp -- but it's still a solid, well-made siege movie which is tense, funny, and (still, after 38 years) shocking. Carpenter's score is simplistic (even for him), but damn is it catchy and effective. Austin Stoker does well in the lead, but Darwin Joston is the one who steals the movie. It's astounding that he couldn't find success later on as an actor, the point that he retired from acting and found work as a teamster for the last ten years of his career.
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Old March 30 2014, 08:23 PM   #178
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

No one else binge-watching movies this weekend?

In a Theater:

On a TV:

31. Night of the Comet (1984) -- B-
32. Invisible Agent (1942) -- B-


Night of the Comet is pretty fun for a cheap little B-movie from the '80s. A young Robert Beltran is top billed here, and he's pretty good in his part (even though it's definitely not the lead). The movie wisely remains tongue in cheek throughout -- trying to seriously approach this material (Valley girl sisters are among a handful of survivors after a passing comet wipes out most of the human race; also, there are zombies and an evil government conspiracy) would have been disastrous.

Invisible Agent has a reputation for being the Invisible Man sequel with the best twist on the premise (here, invisibility is used in a secret mission behind German lines during WWII). Judging from the first two films in the series, and what I've read about the other two, I'd have to agree. That said, I think the comedy is taken too far with the German villains. They're so buffoonish that they're never a compelling threat to the lead and when one of the main baddies is gunned down at the end, this leaves you almost feel sorry for him. Also, in a movie filled with Nazi villains, casting Peter Lorre as a Japanese baddie confounds any logic I can come up with (and, obviously, is terribly racist). There are two other films in this series I've yet to see (The Invisible Woman and The Invisible Man's Revenge), but I think I'll pass on them for now. Even this one was a pretty formulaic affair, and without James Whale's wit, they're just not as good as the original.

If I were to pick one of the invisible man movies to remake, though, I'd definitely pick this one.
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Old March 30 2014, 08:34 PM   #179
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014

35. Urban Legends: Final Cut ★
36. Dallas Buyer's Club ★★★1/2
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Old March 31 2014, 03:33 PM   #180
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Re: Movies Seen In 2014


27. Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (A+)

Between this and the first Pirates of the Caribbean film, 2003 was a great year for fans of the Golden Age of Sail, though unfortunately only the latter film would be successful enough to spawn sequels. Peter Weir has only made one movie since this, which most people didn't see, leaving this as his last major cinematic outing to date. One wishes he worked more. I saw this in theatres when it came out, and rewatched it at least once before, but it was a pleasure to see it again. Quite apart from Weir, much of the cast could be said to have peaked around the time this film was made -- Russell Crowe is still around, but this was the tail end of his prime as a movie star; Paul Bettany never quite lived up to the potential he was showing around this period; and amongst the sea of minimally-characterized crew, Billy Boyd has vanished, never to be seen again.

Cinema: 11
DVD: 7 (+1)
Computer: 9
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