Movies: Last Movie You Watched and Rate It: Part XXX

Discussion in 'Entertainment' started by ThePhoenixx, Sep 9, 2017.

  1. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    Amerika Square
    (2017) Directed by Yannis Sakardis 7A

    The fact that Amerika Square which looks at immigrants to Greece from a variety of different perspectives is small scale and low key does not keep it from being a very good movie. Set around Amerika Square, a hang out in central Athens, best friends Billy, a tattoo artist, and Nakos, nearing 40, out of work and still living at home, have distinctly different points of view about refugees, Nakos considers them vermin to be exterminated while Billy believes most of them to be good people worth helping out in a pinch. As it happens the lives of two immigrants, Tarek a father trying desperately to get to his child in Italy and Tereza a lounge singer beholden to the wrong people, will intersect in different ways with both Billy's and, less directly, Nakos's lives. Ala director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarittu's 23 Grams and Babel, the first-person perspective shifts around a lot in this movie, though on a smaller canvas and on a much more pleasing scale. Though a relatively quiet film, the range is powerful, going from very funny to hard-edged without skipping a beat. While Amerika Square is mostly warm-hearted, that doesn't mean it lacks steel at its core. The ending contains a very clever reference to Casablanca, though it's not one many will relish. One very smart, sad, funny, clear-eyed movie.

    Note: Amerika Square is Greece's submission to this year's Academy Awards in the "foreign language" category.

    subtitles
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2017
  2. Nalens Oga

    Nalens Oga Registered User

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    I know people go on about Isla Fisher & Amy Adams but Hilary Swank and Jennifer Garner....that one is much weirder, why does no one talk about it?
     
  3. ProstheticConscience

    ProstheticConscience Taking a Stroll

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    The Dark Tower

    with Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, and some kid.

    Stephen King's magnum opus doorstop book series gets the big-screen treatment and it's really hard to see why the hell he needed seven novels to tell that story. I gather there's a little more to it than the movie showed. Idris Elba does okay as the heroic lead Gunslinger trying to save the universe, however Matt Mac does less well as the Man in Black. You can't really take either the actor or the role seriously. One, you just can't believe Mr Surfer Dude as an all-powerful sorcerer, and two, why does he want to destroy the universe? He does know he's in it himself, right? And besides, that's where everyone keeps their stuff.

    Checked it out for ****s and giggles to see if it's as bad as everyone says. I dunno, I didn't think it was all that bad. I mean, it's certainly not good. Having never read any of the books I didn't know a lot about the basic premise, and the movie just kinda does its thing and assumes anyone paying to see it already knows the backstory. And Roland's gun obsession and supernatural ability to shoot people is the stuff of every NRA member's wet dreams.

    Kinda crap movie, but whatever.
     
  4. Nalens Oga

    Nalens Oga Registered User

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    Delicatessen (1991) - 8/10

    I do have to say that it was better than the aesthetically-pleasing but pathetically-sentimental Amelie. The storyline is solid but the yellow filter was really grating after a bit.
     
  5. Amerika

    Amerika Going from this land here to that

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    Going to watch The Killing of the Sacred Deer tommorow. I'm excited as hell. Has anyone here watched it? If so, any opinions?
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2017 at 4:50 PM
  6. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    I think really highly of it. Currently #3 on my yearly list.
     
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  7. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
    (2017) Directed by Martin McDonagh 6A

    Seven months having passed since her daughter's rape and murder, Mildred (Francis McDormand) tries to spur Sheriff Willoughby (Woody Harrelson) into action by erecting a trio of billboards near her home that shame the police department's futility. Officer Dixon (Sam Rockwell), a loose cannon at the best of times, takes offense, as do most of the town's people. But that does nothing to assuage Mildred's wrath. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri sounds like it is setting up to solve a mystery, but it happens to have very different intentions. The focus here is on rage, penance, redemption, and renewal, all of which are thoughtfully and entertainingly explored but with enough bumps in the road along the way to give one pause. Key letters, spoken aloud during the movie, do way too much to direct traffic and change our perception about certain characters. As movies should show not tell, this one seems to be taking a rather facile shortcut in this instance. As well, certain important relationships that Mildred has--mother and son, wife and ex, and so on--are either a bit baffling or unconvincingly drawn (also, Lucas Hedges as her son seems to think that he is still acting his part in Manchester by the Sea). Although the three lead actors are all so good that it pretty much washed away most of my doubts, I ended up feeling that the movie never really earned its moments of epiphany. I enjoyed Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri but also found it ultimately a little underwhelming. I couldn't quite shake the feeling that the director isn't always playing fair with his interesting collection of characters, and in this case that left me with unwanted mixed feelings about their various fates.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2017 at 1:09 AM
  8. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    Saint George
    (2017) Directed by Marco Martins 7C

    Jorge (virtual unknown Nuno Lopes in a beautifully restrained performance), an out-of-work boxer with an on-again-off-again lover and a young son to take care of, finds the only job available to him is that of an enforcer for a collection agency, one of the hundreds of such businesses that took advantage of Portugal's failing economy. Although Jorge doesn't say much, the job doesn't suit him. But he has no options, at least not if he wants to keep his modest little family together. He does what he can but it's not long before he seems to be living on borrowed time. Both social critique and sympathetic character study, Saint George owes a major debt to the great Portuguese director Pablo Costa whose hyper-realist examinations of Lisbon's urban poor also combine powerful insightful critique with detailed character study. While Saint George is slow, the movie accumulates real purpose as it goes along. Jorge ends up as sympathetic, though almost certainly doomed. Though the movie will appeal to a small audience who have the patience to let it unfold at its own pace, Saint George is nonetheless a very good movie.

    Note: Saint George is Portugal's submission to this year's Academy Awards in the "foreign film" category.

    subtitles
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2017 at 5:19 PM
  9. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    I’ve seen 17 of the 82 “foreign language” movies submitted for consideration for this year’s Academy Awards, and presently I would rank them in this order.

    Loveless (Russia)
    On Body and Soul (Hungary}
    A Fantastic Woman (Chile)

    Zama (Argentina)
    Amerika Square (Greece)
    Saint George (Portugal)
    Thelma (Norway)
    The Divine Order (Switzerland)
    BPM (France)
    The Fixer (Romania)
    First They Killed My Father (Cambodia)

    The Square (Sweden)
    Happy End (Austria)
    A Taxi Driver (South Korea)

    In the Fade (Germany)
    Sheikh Jackson (Egypt)
    Wolf Warrior II (China)

    Still to see: Foxtrot (Israel) and whatever else might pop up eventually.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2017 at 1:20 AM
  10. Nalens Oga

    Nalens Oga Registered User

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    Logan Lucky (2017) - 8/10

    This isn't as high-stakes as Ocean's 11 but it's the better movie cos it's just so much fun. The cast is better, especially Daniel Craig doing a Southern accent. Seth McFarlane's unnecessary role is the only bad part of this film (and he somehow was listed like third in credits despite having only a few scenes). Oh and the rendition of that song by the little girl, had to skip that. Anyways, great comedy caper. Also a Hilary Swank sighting....she came in near the end playing an agent doing basically a Clint Eastwood impersonation.
     
  11. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    Mudbound
    (2017) Directed by Dee Rees 7A

    Set during and just after World War II, Mudbound is about two families, one white and one black, who live, unequally, on the Mississippi Delta, each group trying to eke out a living from the unforgiving land. After the war is over, a friendship develops between Hap, one of the black farmers, and Jamie, who has returned to the farm to work for his older brother Henry and his wife. Hap and Jamie share their war experiences, each providing the other with someone to talk to and to trust. Unfortunately, Henry is nowhere near as enlightened as his younger brother, and their father is far worse. Mudbound provides a sweeping canvas upon which the lives of both families are revealed. Voice overs, an often iffy device that works well here, are used to express what many of the characters are often thinking or feeling. The script, though strong, sometimes seems a little too literary and at other times a little too melodramatic for its own good. The pacing appears television-friendly with the various episodes going by in nice, easy to digest segments. These flaws tended to put a bit of distance between me and the material. However, given what the movie is trying to accomplish, these criticisms are small change. What the film does do very well is expose the life-sapping ugliness of racism while underscoring its senseless cruelty and unfathomable stupidity. It would be nice if we didn't still need movies like Mudbound, but, obviously, we do.

    Note: currently available on Netflix
     
  12. Amerika

    Amerika Going from this land here to that

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    The Killing of the Sacred Deer by Yorgos Lanthimos (2017) - More straightforward then I expected it to be, I still greatly enjoyed it, despite minor annoyances. I thought the visuals and camerawork were the more rewarding part of the film and while the story was engaging, I felt like they were certain plot elements that were a little too convenient to keep the story and suspense alive. For example,
    how in the world did the idea of the husband killing the wife never come up before leaving it to chance at the end? The mother sacrificing her life for the sake of her children was never considered or even hinted at (and I believe it could have enhanced the character).
    The dialogue and it's delivery also often felt rather mechanical and forced in contrast with the theme and situation, but I sometimes felt it was humorous in an absurd way - perhaps on purpose - and it also appears to be a recurring occurrence in Lanthimos movies. The performances were well-done, and I enjoyed the way the characters reacted to their perceived fate and predicament, particularly the wife at the end, who does it in a perfectly subdued way that I found well thought-out and chilling. Beautiful tracking shots are scattered throughout the film as well, and the haunting music was well used, becoming part of the story itself, and almost telling one of it's own. Minor gripes in regards to the story but well worth the price of admission.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2017 at 1:07 AM
  13. Amerika

    Amerika Going from this land here to that

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    Sorry, just stumbled upon this post as I was looking for Kihei's review for The Killing of a Sacred Deer. What an awesome movie that one is, and easily Scorcese's best in my eyes - along with DeNiro's greatest performance - but I have no idea why you felt the ending to be ambiguous. Seemed to me rather obvious it was all true.
     
  14. aleshemsky83

    aleshemsky83 Registered User

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    The applause just goes on way too long and the audio started repeating. Seemed dreamlike. Maybe it meant something else but that's what it seemed to me. Could be wrong.
     
  15. MetalheadPenguinsFan

    MetalheadPenguinsFan Disco Is Dead!!!

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    A Christmas Story (1983)

    7/10
     
  16. GB

    GB Registered User

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    I know it can be interpreted both ways but that's how it seemed to me too. I felt the same way about the ending to Taxi Driver too.
     
  17. Nalens Oga

    Nalens Oga Registered User

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    Is the re-make of Cape Fear better or the original?
     
  18. ProstheticConscience

    ProstheticConscience Taking a Stroll

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    Oh god no.
     
  19. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    I've been discussing Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri with a lot of people. Despite that fact that I gave the movie a positive, albeit highly qualified, review, the general consensus among my friends is that I am full of ****. While that hasn't changed my opinion one iota, I must admit that most people absolutely love this movie.
     
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  20. Nalens Oga

    Nalens Oga Registered User

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    Nightmare Alley (1947) - 7.5/10

    More drama than the noir which the poster suggets. Also, the man in the poster looks closer to Robert Mitchum than Tyrone Powers.

    [​IMG]
     
  21. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    Blade of the Immortal
    (2017) Directed by Takashi Miike 7A

    Blade of the Immortal
    is a really fun samurai movie by a director who has made so many movies, close to a hundred, that I wouldn't have thought he had much left in the tank for this sort of thing. The plot centres on a young girl who having watched her father killed and her mother enslaved wants revenge, an immortal samurai for whom eternal life is far more curse than blessing (for one thing, he comes out on the wrong end of a lot of fights), and an ethereal, charismatic bad guy who is trying to revolutionize sword fighting. Effortlessly Miike manages to mix lots of character development among all the frantic action of which there is a ton. No stranger to excess, Miike includes a cast of thousands, all of whom have shorter life expectancy than a house fly . Blade of the Immortal is classic samurai movie with a solid script, likeable characters, endless mayhem, and, to top it off, some beautifully composed images that add atmosphere to the story. With the exception of Ichi, the Killer and 13 Assassins, I have often had problems with this director, but I must say Miike appears to be getting better with age.

    subtitles
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2017 at 2:58 AM
  22. kihei

    kihei Registered User

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    One of Us
    (2017) Directed by Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady (documentary)

    One of Us
    is an intimate and heartbreaking documentary about three people who attempt to leave the ultra-conservative Hasidim community in Brooklyn, New York, and suffer the consequences. One, a teenage boy who suffered sexual abuse at a summer camp, is fascinated by the secular world but finds he was never taught the skills to understand, let alone, adjust to that world. A second, an aspiring actor, finds that escaping the community meant cutting all his ties to family and friends, leaving him permanently alone and isolated. Darkest of all, a mother has her seven children taken away from her by the New York courts, despite the fact that the children love their mother and do no want to live with their abusive father. On one level, Hasidic Judaism, a form of Judaism favoured by many survivors of the Holocaust, is a perfectly understandable response to protect Jews from the dangers of a secular society like the one that once attempted to exterminate them in Germany. The Hasidim community of Brooklyn is very close knit, self-contained even, with its own rules, values, manner of dress, and forms of social order. This approach works great for many, especially men, but others who cannot accept such a sheltered, insular existence must pay a terrible price for personal freedom. The community ostracizes those who try to leave and uses any legal loophole it can to force its will on its dissidents, often, ironically, with the consent of the secular courts. Part of what makes the documentary so heart-wrenching is that one can readily understand the need of this community to protect itself while at the same time realizing that its religious fundamentalism can cause unconscionable harm to the members of the community who can no longer accept living under such rigid conditions.

    Note: Currently screening on Netflix
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2017 at 2:56 AM

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