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Default What I've Been Watching: The Catch-All Film Thread

March 29th, 2007, 19:43
A Touch of Zen—
A classic Chinese martial arts movie. There is a lot of thinking involved in this film. One of the major characters the scholar actually plots strategy and philosophizes rather than beating everyone up. The monks are very cool. Lots of jumping sword action. Many good one liners. Very nice cinematography with beautiful country settings.
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March 31st, 2007, 13:27
Seen 300 yesterday. While I think that the movie is ok and a passable piece of entertainment I don't get all the hype about 300. It really has become a trend lately that whenever a movie is shown that features a bad story and bad dialogues, but a lot of action and special effects half of the critics proclaim an evolution or revolution of modern movie-making - just think about "Snakes on a Plane." 300 is certainly not as bad as "Snakes on a plane," so don't get me wrong here. It's a rather well made movie, the special effects are great, the scenery looks awsome, the action is breathtaking… unfortunately there isn't much more to the movie really. There is hardly any story (300 Spartans venture North to fight against an invading Persian army - that's it), and the dialogue in the movie seems to be limited to sentences like "This is Sparta," "We are Spartans," "Ahooo!!!," and "Arrrrrgh!" Of course the whole movie is as bloody and brutal as possible to make up for the lacking story and dialogue. You won't find any humor in 300, except involuntary one - especially the godking Xerxes who looks like he stumbeld from a gay techno parade first into a piercing studio, and then into the set of 300, was fairly amusing.
No doubt, 10 or 12 years ago I would have applauded enthusiastically.
Even today I think the movie is still a fun ride - after all it's only 117 minutes and therefore just too short to become boring. Watching it with friends and being drunk also helps a lot.
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April 1st, 2007, 09:01
El Baron Del Terror aKa "Brainiac" (Mexico 1961)

Truly one of the most outright bizarre films I've seen in quite some time! The old "heretic burned at the stake vows vengeance on the ancestors" song and dance is the foundation of this mexican acid trip of a horror film. The concept of the Spanish Inquisition in Mexico is pretty funny to begin with. Then, not going the mundane route of just killing the ancestors, this hombre actually uses his serpentine, hollow, forked tongue to remove their "encephlatic mass" as it is scientifically referred to in the film. In other words, he sucks out their brains. Methinks we are seeing the result of one kid's nightmares about el Chupacabra.

The creature itself is some kind of demonic-looking guy with pincers for hands. While in human form, he's still snackin' here and there on a brain he keeps in the cupboard! (actually looks like the delicious mexican pudding "flan") The film doesn't make it clear if he must eat brains to retain his monster powers, or if he's just having a snack or something. I already have some Mexican/South American horror, but this one's got me checking out some more.
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April 9th, 2007, 17:28
Mrs. Henderson Presents (2005)
Rated: R
Score: 4.5/5
Summary: Very charming movie, and Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins are excellent, and the whole wartime storyline is nicely brought across.

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April 9th, 2007, 17:32
Just took my 9 year old to see Meet the Robinson's on Saturday night. It was really a great movie. It was completely appropriate for just about any movie-going age-group, and although it was a bit predictable, it was well written, animated and voice-acted.

My son and I both enjoyed it quite a bit.

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April 16th, 2007, 17:15
Originally Posted by Ionstormsucks View Post
Seen 300 yesterday. While I think that the movie is ok and a passable piece of entertainment I don't get all the hype about 300. It really has become a trend lately that whenever a movie is shown that features a bad story and bad dialogues, but a lot of action and special effects half of the critics proclaim an evolution or revolution of modern movie-making - just think about "Snakes on a Plane." 300 is certainly not as bad as "Snakes on a plane," so don't get me wrong here. It's a rather well made movie, the special effects are great, the scenery looks awsome, the action is breathtaking… unfortunately there isn't much more to the movie really. There is hardly any story (300 Spartans venture North to fight against an invading Persian army - that's it), and the dialogue in the movie seems to be limited to sentences like "This is Sparta," "We are Spartans," "Ahooo!!!," and "Arrrrrgh!" Of course the whole movie is as bloody and brutal as possible to make up for the lacking story and dialogue. You won't find any humor in 300, except involuntary one - especially the godking Xerxes who looks like he stumbeld from a gay techno parade first into a piercing studio, and then into the set of 300, was fairly amusing.
No doubt, 10 or 12 years ago I would have applauded enthusiastically.
Even today I think the movie is still a fun ride - after all it's only 117 minutes and therefore just too short to become boring. Watching it with friends and being drunk also helps a lot.
As per my post on the same subject matter over at the Obsidian boards:

I find the biggest flaw of 300 is also the reason why I enjoyed it so much: it faithfully recreates Frank Miller's graphic novel. I certainly would have appreciated a lot more detail concerning the historical and political realities of the time, but 300 was more of a stylistic interpretation of history than an actual depiction. It works well for what it tries to be. I also didn't like some of the events because of special effects:
Spoiler
for instance, gains good foreshadowing but is then ruined by a poor use of camera and lighting effects; by comparison, the rather bare bones (no pun intended) display of the wall being built
Spoiler
was more effective. The battles were also a bit hit or miss, with the use of slowdown being a bit convoluted for my tastes (though I prefered that to the chaotic and epileptic camera juggling of, say, Braveheart).

However, it was still a somewhat enjoyable movie - there were some very good scenes in it - but it's not something I'd bother watching a second time.

Now, someone *needs* to make a movie adaptation of Miller's Daredevil: Born Again or Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.
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April 16th, 2007, 20:43
finally got around to seeing Office Space

I think it was kinda funny, you know, especially in the beginning when the "office life" jokes were fresh. Toward the end, the movie definitely started weakening, and I started watching the clock myself. Lots of people recommended this to me, and I guess it was alright if you work in an office. I wouldnt buy it or anything.

Dont get me wrong, office life for those who really live it such as I, does start to suck just like any other job. However, I sure as hell would rather be right here at my desk than out in the warehouse, or installing on some jobsite or something, or taking customer bullshit all day long. What I'm saying is that the sympathy I have for the characters and relation to the woe and angst they feel, which is needed for this to be a hit with me, is quite thin. The copier sucks, cubicles suck, etc., sure, but in the end it just aint that bad when you look at some of the horrendous jobs others have to put up with day in and day out.


I also loathe rap, so I really wasnt into the "nigga this-nigga that" rap break every 20 mins or so, it really started getting on my nerves. And Jennifer Aniston, or "Jen", as she is known by everyone who stands in a grocery store line and has to stare at idiot tabloids while checking out, just rubs me the wrong way. Some stars can transcend their television roles successfully, and some cant.
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April 16th, 2007, 21:24
Originally Posted by xSamhainx View Post
finally got around to seeing Office Space
You have to remember that it is 8 years old now, and anything like this definitely has a 'shelf life' … and I find this has aged better than, say, the Shrek movies. That said, I would never call it 'great' … it is fun for what it is.

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April 16th, 2007, 21:56
Beowulf & Grendel… It's a waste of time really. Apart from the fact that it's obviously some kind of b-movie (partly it has fairly cheap costumes), the movie is just boring. There is hardly anything that catches the viewer's attention. When I was about half through the movie I began using fast forward, mainly so I did not have to listen to the terrible boring and stupid dialogues.
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April 16th, 2007, 23:29
I'm viewing a great deal of the American Vietnam war movies for an upcoming project I've decided to do at college.

The films include:
- Platoon
- Hamburger Hill
- Full Metal Jacket
- Apocalypse Now Redux (One of my favourite movies)
- Born July the 4th

To buy:
- Deer Hunter
- Casualties of War

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April 17th, 2007, 04:18
Full Metal Jacket and Apocalypse Now are definitely the best movies on that list, FMJ is one of my personal favorites.

So many great lines in that movie, especially by Lee Ermey.
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April 17th, 2007, 06:56
Originally Posted by Ionstormsucks View Post
Beowulf & Grendel… It's a waste of time really. Apart from the fact that it's obviously some kind of b-movie (partly it has fairly cheap costumes), the movie is just boring. There is hardly anything that catches the viewer's attention. When I was about half through the movie I began using fast forward, mainly so I did not have to listen to the terrible boring and stupid dialogues.
…well, it's a Chris Lambert film (if it's THAT Beowulf you just saw) , which doesn't really help… I don't think there was a single film with him I liked (Greystoke, perhaps, at least I thought it was okay). And the Beowulf musical score was totally off… there are porn flicks with better music. And dialogues.

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April 17th, 2007, 20:33
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
Full Metal Jacket and Apocalypse Now are definitely the best movies on that list, FMJ is one of my personal favorites.

So many great lines in that movie, especially by Lee Ermey.
Yes, the beginning of FMJ was fabulously humorous. Though the rest of the film seemed a bit vague to me.
And Apocalypse Now is in my world just one of those masterpieces.

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April 17th, 2007, 20:55
Yeah, I'd put Apocalypse now up there as one of my all time faves, whereas FMJ has loads of cool stuff but isn't so cohesive.

The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951)
Rated: G
Score: 5/5
Summary: This is still a completely amazing movie … and totally effective. My older son has wanted to see it for some time, my younger son is always ambivalent about this stuff, so we just watched it. I probably hadn't seen it in 20 years, and it was still just as good as I remembered.

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April 17th, 2007, 23:17
I've just seen Neverwas. Not that is was any spectacular or even damn good, but it made me remind another movie. Neverwas is for me much like the Fisher King. It's also a not so common movie, not easy to categorise.
Has any of you watched it?

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April 18th, 2007, 17:36
Originally Posted by Jaz View Post
…well, it's a Chris Lambert film (if it's THAT Beowulf you just saw) , which doesn't really help… I don't think there was a single film with him I liked (Greystoke, perhaps, at least I thought it was okay). And the Beowulf musical score was totally off… there are porn flicks with better music. And dialogues.
The one I see was directed by some guy called Sturla Gunnarsson. Gerard Butler (the Spartan king from 300) is playing Beowulf… So I don't think it's the same movie (but yeah, you're right Lambert's movies usually suck… I'm still wondering how Highlander managed to be so damn successful - that movie must have the worst story ever!).
Anyway, I was pretty much done with the Beowulf from Sturla Gunnarsson after I had to listen to a dialogue in which the two persons involved (two norsemen of some sort) were talking about Grendel, constantly calling him "the fucking troll."
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April 19th, 2007, 03:01
While my parents were in town over the weekend, the Mrs and I snuck away for a dinner-n-movie date. Saw "Disturbia". Not going to win any Oscars, but a fun suspense film. A novel version of a standard story with just enough surprises ot keep it interesting. The female lead was a real hottie, not that I'd notice that sort of thing while sitting next to my lovely wife…

The theatre was about half full, which would normally be a disaster waiting to happen, but we were treated to the best crowd we've ever experienced: no talkers, no cell phones, no wrapper rattlers, no concession stand runners.

Sorry. No pearls of wisdom in this oyster.
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April 19th, 2007, 05:50
El Vampiro

On a Mexican horror kick here lately, strange films. "El Vampiro" is the Mexican stab at vampire films, starring Abel Salazar, Ariadna Welter, Germán Robles, basically the main cast from "El Baron Del Terror". It was a trip seeing all them again so soon again, I guess they are the Mexican equivalent of Bela Lugosi, Peter Cushing, Cristopher Lee, etc in a way. Actually does much of the same vampire atmosphere and costume things that the later and more widely known Hammer films from Britain would in time make standard. The early special effects are basically jump cuts, but I found them to be employed quite creatively, with the vamps just suddenly "appearing", or walking forward and taking flight as a bat (albeit a kinda cheesy looking one!).
It's all good tho, you cant go into these type of early 50's films expecting freakin spielberg! I liked it, glad I got the two disc set with the sequel, "El Ataud del Vampiro (The Vampire's Coffin)"
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April 19th, 2007, 06:00
I saw "An Unreasonable Man" the other day. It's about Ralph Nadar. Great documentary. Its out in theaters but if you have Cox on demand you can rent it at home.
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April 24th, 2007, 22:40
I watched (Dee Snider's) Strangeland a couple of nights ago. It was on IFC late at night. It was fairly intense and actually pretty good. Definitely not for the kids.

Interesting note… the guy who played the part of the "buddy cop" is Brett Harrelson, who is the brother of Woody Harrelson. Both went to my high school. Woody was older than me and I never knew him. Brett was a year younger than me and I did know him, though not that well. Suffice it to say that I never thought in a million years that Brett would become an actor. He's only been if a few films, but I was pleasantly surprised by his performance in this film. He did a pretty good job.

My best friend in high school was dating a girl who dumped him for Brett… so I remember us hating him at the time…

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