Movies Seen in 2010

Discussion in 'TV & Media' started by Starbreaker, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. Admiral Shran

    Admiral Shran Vice Admiral Admiral

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    In the Before Time - the Long, Long Ago
    So far all I've seen is Alice in Wonderland, and I was not too impressed. I might go see Clash of the Titans here soon.
     
  2. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    Los Angeles, California
    I...uh, borrowed the soundtrack from the library. I do have his recording for The Hours, though, and I really like it.

    Speaking of Glass, now is about as good a time as any to gloat that I saw him live Thursday evening performing several solo piano pieces. He's such a facile and calm performer that he makes pieces which are technically close to impossible come off as effortless. Definitely worth seeing if you're into his style of composition.
     
  3. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Charlottetown, PEI, Canada
    49. Ran (A-)

    My first film of the month of April, since going home for the Easter weekend gave me time to watch a Blu-ray 2 that my laptop won't play. April is also the month of the Bard's birth, so to commemorate this event I'll be watching/rewatching some cinematic adaptations of his work. Ran, Akira Kurosawa's last really big film, was based on King Lear, albeit only evolving into that gradually. Of the Big Five tragedies, Lear is the one I liked the least when I read it - my main problem was that I thought Lear pretty much deserved what he got, and that his demands were completely unrealistic and unwarranted; up until they pluck out Gloucester's eyes, I'm totally with Regan and Goneril.

    Kurosawa, conversely, takes the stance that Hidetora more or less deserves everything he gets (in a neat touch, constantly bringing up reminders of the typical victims of a feudal king), even if that doesn't excuse the pettiness and villainy of most of the people involved. The three daughters have become three sons here; the other really significant addition is the Lady Macbeth-ish Lady Kaede, who I suppose could be seen as a reworking of Regan or Goneril. Kaede's probably the best character, but a lot of the other side-characters are also really strong, such as Kurogane, the second son's much wiser henchman.

    It's a bit on the overlong side; you could cut the run-time by at least 15 minutes just by cutting down on the redundant scenes of soldiers running all over the place (in an interesting choice, there's very little actual action, just soldiers deploying and the aftermath). The soldiers look cool, though, one example of the striking uses of colour throughout (apparently the same guy later did Hero, which had similar motifs). I'm also of two minds on the actor playing Hidetora; he's decked out in heavy Noh makeup, and his performance relies on a lot on what in other cultural contexts would be very heavy mugging; there's very little humanity to him (Lear, even when I thought he was a total jerk, was still typically expressive of a Shakespeare character).
     
  4. Starbreaker

    Starbreaker Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Chattanooga, TN
    34. The Bird With the Crystal Plumage (1970, Argento) [B-] [Blu-Ray]

    It's okay. Bonus points for the excellent cinematography and super cool title. I liked this better than Suspiria. I don't think I'll be watching any more of his movies though. They're really just not my thing.
     
  5. tomalak301

    tomalak301 Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco Bay Area, CA
    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

    I don't know what it is with me watching the Coen Brothers films lately, but I saw another one tonight. Man this movie was weird, wackey, and just downright cool. Whatever happened to John Goodman anyway? He was great in this movie, as he was for most of the 90's, but I haven't seen him in a long time. Now I know what people talk about when they mention Bridges and "The Dude." He was great in this movie. It was a ton of fun, and I feel really bad for Donnie. He's being told to "Shut the fuck up" all movie long and then he dies? Tough luck.

    I will say one thing for the Coen Bros. films though. They really love putting characters through hell. It seems to be a trademark in their movies.
     
  6. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Tatoinne
    The Box - it was pretty much bad in the way I expected it to be bad (short story draaaged out to absurd lengths) but I was curious about it anyway.
     
  7. JacksonArcher

    JacksonArcher Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Aug 16, 2001
    The Box was good when it followed Richard Matheson's story but when it deviated and went into Richard Kelly territory, it became confusing, overwrought, and just plain bad.
     
  8. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    Los Angeles, California
    On the subject of John Goodman, he's part of the cast of David Simon's new series about post-Katrina New Orleans on HBO, Treme. Looks like he has a good part, too.

    64. Notes on a Scandal [A-]
    65. Shutter Island [B-]
    66. Gosford Park [A]
    67. The Third Man [A]
    68. Fantastic Planet [A]
    69. Pandorum [C]
    70. Trancers [D-]
    71. D-Tox [F]
    72. Whatever it Takes (2010) [B-]
    73. Mystic River [A-]
    74. 2012 [D]
    75. The Fog of War [A]
    76. The Octagon [F]
    77. Leprechaun In The Hood [C-]

    It's obvious, watching The Octagon, why Chuck Norris has such a devoted following on the internet. It's less clear how he ever had a successful action career, even in B-pictures like this. There's hardly any action until the final act, and none of it is particularly memorable. Lee Van Cleef slums his way to another paycheck, and seems to be slouching all the time to make Norris look taller. Norris' flashbacks, conveyed with echoey voice over, are hilarious.

    Anthony Montgomery fires a gun, cross-dresses, performs several rap numbers, is possessed by a demon, and has several scenes that are at least supposed to be emotional in this film, which by my count means he has more to do in 90 minutes than he had to do during the entire run of Enterprise. As for the film, it isn't good, but it manages to be campy enough to be entertaining. When Ice-T pulls three weapons out of his afro in the beginning, including a bat, you know the film isn't taking itself too seriously. By the time we get to Warwick Davis' rap number over the credits, the joke has worn out its welcome, but only just. It's probably for the best I haven't seen the previous four films in the series.
     
  9. Starbreaker

    Starbreaker Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2001
    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN
    The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus [C-]

    Nice to look at, but pretty much nonsensical.
     
  10. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 1999
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    Tatoinne
    Lemme guess - the short story ends where Mr. Steward says the box will be reprogrammed and given to someone "you don't know." Which means that the couple never found out whether anyone died, but they'll never know for sure, and they'll live in fear for the rest of their lives because that box is out there somewhere and they may be next.

    They traded a million dollars for their peace of mind. Even if nobody actually died, the moral of the story is clear - they've screwed themselves over.

    Maybe the screenplay would have worked better if we never found out whether anyone had died, and the whole thing is just the couple tormenting themselves with fear and guilt. But without all the aliens and NSA hooplah, that story would have taken a lot of talent to pull off, like a Hitchcock. I felt like all that stuff was thrown in there to distract us from the fact that there wasn't any story.
     
  11. Gep Malakai

    Gep Malakai Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2007
    I'm sorry, did you say aliens? As in, alien aliens? From space?

    I have The Box in my queue, and now I'm not sure if this make it sound more or less idiotic.
     
  12. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    Crocodile Dundee 8/10, haven't seen that for years
    Monty Python And The Holy Grail 9/10, had to watch that for the Easter Bunny...
    Carry On Follow That Camel 7/10
     
  13. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2004
    Location:
    Charlottetown, PEI, Canada
    1. Avatar (B)
    2. Precious (A)
    3. Invictus (B)
    4. A Single Man (B-)
    5. Crazy Heart (A-)
    6. A Serious Man (A-)
    7. The Last Station (A-)
    8. Adventureland (B+)
    9. Samaritan Girl (C-)
    10. 3-Iron (A)
    11. The Hurt Locker (A-)
    12. Citizen Kane (A)
    13. Planet Hulk (B+)
    14. High Society (B-)
    15. The Philadelphia Story (A-)
    16. The Pianist (A-)
    17. Murder By Decree (A-)
    18. A Man For All Seasons (B+)
    19. A Patch of Blue (B+)
    20. Broadway Danny Rose (B+)
    21. The Departed (A)
    22. The Purple Rose of Cairo (B+)
    23. Zelig (B)
    24. Radio Days (B)
    25. Hannah and Her Sisters (B+)
    26. Gone Baby Gone (A+)
    27. Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths (B+)
    28. Doctor Zhivago (B)
    29. A Beautiful Mind (A-)
    30. Match Point (A+)
    31. Scoop (C)
    32. Vicky Cristina Barcelona (B+)
    33. The Maltese Falcon (B+)
    34. Love and Death (B-)
    35. Shakespeare in Love (A+)
    36. Dial M For Murder (A)
    37. The Last King of Scotland (A-)
    38. Annie Hall (A+)
    39. Tropic Thunder (B)
    40. Manhattan (B+)
    41. Mighty Aphrodite (B+)
    42. High Noon (B+)
    43. Interiors (B)
    44. Stardust Memories (B)
    45. Adam's Rib (C)
    46. City Lights (B+)
    47. Chloe (B)
    48. The Ghost Writer (B+)
    49. Ran (A-)
    50. Henry V (A+)

    I've in the past given this as my favourite film of all time, but I hadn't rewatched it in a while. The verdict: still my favourite film of all time.

    Kenneth Branagh has made several movies since his debut, and a number of them very good and even great, but he's, to my mind, never come close to touching this one. It's pretty much perfect; one can imagine that a bigger budget might have allowed for some bigger battles, perhaps, but they didn't have the cash, the prologue has a built-in apologia for that, and the battles are still terrific (one could almost say it's a flaw that the fights are so realistic that when they try to say that total English casualties amounted to about 30 people later on it's even harder to believe than normal).

    The direction is awesome, the writing is awesome (of course), the characters are awesome, the music is awesome (Patrick Doyle has likewise never done better than he does here). Branagh's terrific as the lead, and the supporting cast is incredible. Notables favourites include Brian Blessed as Henry's uncle, terrific as the right hand of the king; Ian Holm as Fluellen (approaching sixty at this point, and still totally convincing as a tough soldier), and Paul Scofield as the King of France. Sir Derek Jacobi as the Chorus is also great, and I love how he's played here; he's like the narrator of a History Channel documentary wandering through the events.

    The more times I watch it, the more you see how Branagh casts and plays every role to get the absolute most out of it. Take Montjoy the herald: in most films a character like this would be a fairly emotionless exposition device, and there's nothing in his dialogue to indicate he's anything more than that, but Branagh and actor Christopher Ravenscroft do amazing things with him, and how his relationship to the king develops.

    The final scene is also really well-handled, which can be hard to do, given that it's a real wild tonal divergence from the rest of the story, almost like ending Saving Private Ryan with Matt Damon going to jokingly woo a German girl once the war was over. It's also that, if looked at objectively, Henry's behaviour in it is kind of grotesque; he puts on the pretence that it's all Katherine's choice, when it totally isn't (and has one of the all-time boldest pickup lines, saying that he loves France so much he had to conquer it all). Branagh and Thompson were one of the great screen couples in their day.
     
  14. od0_ital

    od0_ital Admiral Admiral

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    Location:
    Nacogdoches, Texas
    Watched both Sherlock Holmes (2009) and Julie & Julia for the first time today.

    RDJ & Jude Law were both pretty good as Holmes & Watson, and I hope there's a sequel.

    The other was a total chick flick.
     
  15. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2009
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    Ireland.
    I saw him when he was in Louth, just north of Dublin, a year or so back. I agree, an excellent performer as well.
     
  16. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Jan 31, 2007
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    Rocky Horror Picture Show 10/10 - an evergreen favourite...
     
  17. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles, California
    64. Notes on a Scandal [A-]
    65. Shutter Island [B-]
    66. Gosford Park [A]
    67. The Third Man [A]
    68. Fantastic Planet [A]
    69. Pandorum [C]
    70. Trancers [D-]
    71. D-Tox [F]
    72. Whatever it Takes (2010) [B-]
    73. Mystic River [A-]
    74. 2012 [D]
    75. The Fog of War [A]
    76. The Octagon [F]
    77. Leprechaun In The Hood [C-]
    78. Ninja Assassin [D]
    79. Modern Times [A]

    Ninja Assassin brings in a few ultraviolent thrills, but is far too bogged down in a side story surrounding a couple of boring EUROPOL agents and a series of needless flashbacks to consistently deliver. I had low expectations, and they were met, basically.

    Modern Times, on the other hand, is Chaplin at his best. Made a few years into the sound era, he was still pretty hesitant to embrace sound, and so he leaves the sound effects mostly to mechanical things and, later, the tramp's song made of gibberish. The assembly line sequences are still funny today, 70+ years later.
     
  18. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 1999
    Location:
    Tatoinne
    Well, aliens or possibly angels. I'm still not exactly sure which is more accurate. Alien angels perhaps?

    And it's definitely more idiotic than you think, if it's in your queue to begin with. ;)
     
  19. zakkrusz

    zakkrusz Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    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 (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)
    District 9 (8)
    Eden of the East: The King of Eden (9)
    The Edge of Darkness (9)
    The Fantastic Mr. Fox (8)
    G-9 (6)
    Gamer (6)
    Green Zone (7)
    Inglorious Bastards (7)
    Law Abiding Citizen (9)
    Lupin the 3rd VS Detective Konan (7)
    Oblivion Island (6)
    Oldboy (9)
    Pandorum (7)
    Summer Wars (10)
    Sword For Truth (6)
    Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Lagann-hen (8)
    They Were 11 (9)
    The Uninvited (7)
     
  20. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles, California
    64. Notes on a Scandal [A-]
    65. Shutter Island [B-]
    66. Gosford Park [A]
    67. The Third Man [A]
    68. Fantastic Planet [A]
    69. Pandorum [C]
    70. Trancers [D-]
    71. D-Tox [F]
    72. Whatever it Takes (2010) [B-]
    73. Mystic River [A-]
    74. 2012 [D]
    75. The Fog of War [A]
    76. The Octagon [F]
    77. Leprechaun In The Hood [C-]
    78. Ninja Assassin [D]
    79. Modern Times [A]
    80. Full Frontal [B-]

    Soderbergh's Full Frontal is probably a better experiment than it is a work of cinema, but it's still manages to be (at times) a very engaging experiment. It helps having such a great cast (When Rainn Wilson and Terence Stamp are nearly extras you're not doing too badly), including a number of great cameos (Brad Pitt, David Fincher, and Jeff Garlin doing such a great job as Harvey Weinstein that I want to see him in the role again). And because I personally enjoy it when a filmmaker so aggressively fucks with his/her audience, the way films within the film kept piling up amused me to no end.
     

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