All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

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All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby J.M. Vargas » Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:13 pm

Been away from the forum's 'Watching' thread for a couple of weeks because of too much work (which is good) but also because I was away visiting my folks in AZ for Thanksgiving (not so good but better than a kick in the head) so I'll cram my late November viewing into this thread (sorry! :D). Let's start this differently with the movies I co-erced my folks to watch with me on their 52" Samsung HDTV (with Surround Sound tech they bought but never used) whenever we weren't walking their dogs five miles (ugh!) or playing ping-pong (UGH!). Keep in mind (a) my folks are simple people in their 60's that aren't into movies, (b) I didn't reveal the titles of these movies until they saw them themselves in the opening titles and (c) I didn't have a plan in choosing other than trying to match the mood they were in on viewing day. They took bathroom breaks (I paused the movie) and were allowed to talk/comment on the flick, otherwise they wouldn't have bothered to watch them (even though they said they enjoyed them all afterwards).

We kicked things on a Saturday evening with Woody Allen's ANNIE HALL (1977) on DVD while eating a home cooked meal on a table set directly in front of the huge TV (my idea, hoping once the movie got rolling they'd be hooked long after they finished eating). I knew my dad and his wife were huge Dianne Keaton fans but her earliest movie they had seen was "The First Wives Club" (and yes, that means they haven't seen "The Godfather" movies! :shock: ). Anywho, they didn't catch-on that it was Keaton until the scene where she shows up in her thrown-together jacket-and-tie and they asked me if it was her; they immediately fell in love with her character (as does pretty much everyone that watches that scene). They laughed at a few of Woody's zingers and the ending left all three of us sitting quietly reading the closing credits in complete silence (a first for them) but my folks said afterwards that if Dianne wasn't in it they wouldn't have liked it as much. BTW, this DVD (which I picked from the local library as a last-minute substitute) looks like ass on a 52" HDTV to my high-def loving eyes but they didn't say a word about its looks.

Tuesday (folks weren't in the mood on Sunday or Monday to watch anything except their daytime/primetime TV shows) for Francis Ford Coppola's APOCALYPSE NOW (1979) on Blu-ray. For this one I forced them to sit in a slightly-uncomfortable bench directly in front of the TV because the comfty couches in the back of the room would have definitely put them to sleep. They liked it but my stepmom almost bailed out during the gore scene of a wounded soldier in the helicopter/village attack and when the cow gets you-know-what toward the end. They were both riveted and even started yelling 'when is this Kurtz guy gonna show up' an hour before he did. My Dad said outloud 'holy s***, that's Marlon Brando' when Kurtz emerged from the shadows (he didn't recognize him from the voice or the earlier pics of young Brando-as-Kurtz that Martin Sheen was looking at on the boat). Also, even though they had no idea who he was, they were both riveted by Hopper's drugged-up dude. When they were making noises about whether Willard or Chef called the air strike on Kurtz' compound (yep, that was their main beef with the flick) I showed them the YouTube video of the theatrical credits on my laptop as soon as the Blu-ray ended (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uuZVukrNo8g). Only when they saw the title in the YouTube video did they know the name of the movie they had just watched for the past three hours. :)

Wednesday I tackled my stepmother's life-long refusal to watch slapstick comedy with the gentlest, nicest and most audience-friendly example of the genre I could think of, Tati's MON ONCLE (1958) on Criterion DVD (another last-minute library substitute). Since they're dog people and had just returned from a French vacation I figured the dogs in the movie and contrast between old France and then-modern ideas of the future would amuse her. Well, the short of it is that it was the most vanilla and dry viewing experience for stepmom (she laughed a little but didn't really mention the movie afterwards), my dad enjoyed it (laughed out loud during the party at Hulot's brother-in-law lawn) and I couldn't hold back tears of joy when the movie ends on that pleasant note of dogs running around without a care in the world set to the 'Mon Oncle' theme song. Basically I felt I wasted a night and a movie with this one until I saw the Terry Gilliam intro afterwards in which he mentions that the just-watched "Apocalypse Now" paid tribute to "Mon Oncle's" title card with one of its own.

Thanksgiving night was reserved (though my folks didn't know it) for Robert Wise's THE SOUND OF MUSIC (1965) on Blu-ray, which turned out to be one of the most surreal viewing experiences I've ever had as a group. We sat in the comfty chairs and I dragged the 52" Samsung across the living room to be as close to the screen as possible (about five feet). They had no idea what was coming from the minutes-long opening shots of the Alps (at one point my stepmom turned to me and asked point-blank 'is this Stallone's "Cliffhanger"?' :shock: ) so, when the camera finally comes down to Julie Andrews' face and she belts 'The Hills are alive with the sound of music...', it literally hit my folks like a ton of bricks. They haven't stopped singing that line since. As the movie dragged on though they couldn't contain their innate inability to watch musicals with a straight face (which I understand since, with few exceptions, musicals also are tough for me to slug through) and engaged in impromptu 'RIFTING' (what they have settled into as a substitute word for the term 'riffing') with some savage comments. I introduced them to Rifftrax Live last October by buying them tickets to "House on Haunted Hill" in their hometown (they've never seen "MST3K") and, primarily to keep awake this Thursday night, they started really tearing into "The Sound of Music" while simultaneously enjoying it. During a 'dunk your face into cold water to keep awake' break (again, my idea) I explained to them that 'RIFTING' doesn't work like they were doing it. That, for riffing to work, the movie had to suck and/or not be compelling. So they dialed-down their 'RIFTING' (it got really bad during the musical segments, especially when Peggy Wood's Mother Abbess starts belting out her tune and they went crazy with 'singing penguins' jokes) but whenever a song was good (like 'My Favorite Things,' which my stepmom figured out was where Oprah Winfrey got the idea for her giveaway shows) they sang along even as they were mocking the characters. When Eleanor Parker says 'there's a girl that will never become a nun' to Plummer my folks screamed in delight and cheered. Somehow, though they were engaged in 'RIFTING' "The Sound of Music," they were totally into the movie's narrative and were following along. I had more fun laughing with them and seeing their faces than the movie itself. Did I mention we were sitting in sleep-inducing comfortable chairs?

Then, when the camera pans down after the wedding bells shot to show Austria under Nazi control with Swastika flags everywhere, my dad and his wife were completely flabbergasted and stopped their 'RIFTING' cold. Judge Giron talked about this on his review of the Blu-ray recently (http://www.dvdverdict.com/reviews/soundofmusicbluray.php) but I actually lived through the tonal shift of the movie completely turning what was a 'fun' family movie into a dead-serious one. Since my folks (a) had not even heard of the real Von Trapp family or (b) seen the movie before they honestly didn't know whether Maria, the Captain and/or any of the kids would live through the end of the movie. Afterwards they told me that, since I've shown them movies with downbeat and/or depressing endings before ("2001: A Space Odyssey," "The Shining," the aforementioned "Apocalypse Now," etc.), they thought the reason I liked "Sound of Music" was because all the happiness in the first two thirds would be offset by death and tragedy in the end. So, with my folks completely engrossed by a final act I knew too well wound end with happiness for all (except for Rolfe ;-)), came to an end one hell of a fun but surreal exposure of "The Sound of Music" to a new pair of converts. Sad part is that I bought the Blu-ray for me thinking I would leave the DVD copy of the movie with my folks after I showed it to them for the first time in HD. But they balked at the idea of watching the movie again in anything other than high-def Blu-ray (it really is a stunningly good-looking transfer) so I had to leave the BD behind. Now I have to start saving my pennies for a new BD of "Sound of Music" for mua.

Friday (again laying in the comfty chairs with the big screen TV five feet in front) I tried a double-feature since the first movie, Sergei Eisentein's BATTLESHIP POTEMKIN (1925) on DVD, was only 69 minutes long. It was a reach for me to try to get my folks to appreciate the nuisance of silent film technique in a 1920's Russian propaganda movie (they saw Lang's "Metropolis" last summer in NYC and kind-of liked it) but they were reasonably amused and gripped by the Odessa Steps massacre. The sailing of the Potemkin ship toward the Admiral's fleet just annoyed the hell out of them though, especially when you-know-what doesn't happen in the end. I had the HD-DVD of "The Untouchables" ready to go (get it? "Potemkin"... "Untouchables"... baby carriage down the stairs... har har) but at the last second I got cold feet and went instead with Sidney Lumet's NETWORK (1976) on DVD. Halfway through the movie we lost my dad's wife to sleep (guess I shouldn't have done a two-fer) but my father, whom I usually have to wake-up when he falls asleep, was riveted by the whole thing. Like me he's a news junkie that has MSNBC as his cable box's default channel (hates Fox News) so the whole movie just went down like showers in April. Howard Beale is his new hero and dad wondered what other good movies 'Hatchet,' aka Robert Duvall, has done. When I asked him how many Robert Duvall movies he has seen he told me only the two that I had showed him ("Network" and "Apocalypse Now"). Sounds like it'll be a "Godfather" weekend next time I visit the folks (especially since Dianne Keaton is in it and they don't know it). The scene in "Network" that my father thought was too improbable and too unbelievable to be true? How high Faye Dunaway's body was when she and Holden were making love. Either it was bad blocking or Holden was... well, Holden (snatch). "Network" is the only movie my father asked to keep from the one's I brought on my visit; I told him I'll mail it back with its proper case and the disc of bonus features when I return home. And, since "Network" and "All The President's Men" are getting released on Blu-ray in February of 2011...

Saturday night we went back to the 'dinner and a movie' setting from the week before and, since the folks were on a good and attentive mood, I unleashed the A Bomb that is Charles Laughton's THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER (1955) on Blu-ray on their unsuspecting minds. To say they were blown away by the movie would be an understatement, they were transfixed and entertained by the whole thing. They both recognized Robert Mitchum the moment he appeared and, since they thought there was a good chance his preacher character would come out ahead (again, using my reputation as a guy that likes negative movies to pull a wool over their expectations like I did with "Sound of Music"), didn't expect "Night of the Hunter" to go the way it did. They kind-of fell back on RIFTING when Mitchum and Lillian Gish engaged in their sing-off duel (which kind-of defused with laughter one of the most tense moments in the film) but afterwards we engaged in a very intense debate about the movie and its historical setting (they didn't know about the abandoned children of the Great Depression or the historical setting in which the movie took place). Not since I showed them "400 Blows" on BD a year prior were they so eager to talk about a movie. Personally (this was my 2nd viewing of "TNOTH") I love how the Spoon couple (Evelyn Varden and Don Beddoe) are partially guilty of the death of Shelley Winters' character, yet you don't hate or despise the couple (particularly Varden's portrayal of Icey Spoon) because that was the way many a good folk was back then. And whoever cast young Billy Chapin as Peter Graves' son deserves kudos because they really look alike. Though very grainy at spots (not in a bad way but noticeable) the B&W cinematography of this movie is borderline stunning. This movie's failure robbed Laughton out of a potentially great second career as a director, but there are many directors with lots more movies that don't come close to the near-perfection that is this odd duck of a children's horror fairytale.

Sunday afternoon, with only a few hours to spare before my scheduled flight back to Gotham, we ate a tasty Sunday brunch (again in a conviniently-positioned table in front of the 52" HDTV) and watched Nic Roeg's WALKABOUT (1971) on Blu-ray. The day before we went on a little hiking trip to the top of South Mountain near Phoenix (next to a cluster of radio and TV antennas that oversee the city) so this seemed like an appropriate send-off film. My stepmom nearly barfed at the hunting/butchering sequences and, even though I told them beforehand to try and abandon any previous expectation of normal movie storytelling (i.e. don't get stuck wondering why the father shoots his kids and then blows his brains out), she couldn't get past the jump-in-time final scene with Agutter-as-a-grownup reliving her memories. Stepmom really wanted to know how the kids got back to their home, how their mother reacted, did the black boy really die (yes he did!), etc. She called the movie 'strange' and 'weird' but afterwards said she liked it (lie). My father liked "Walkabout" a lot more (and joked that it resembled our odd family life the previous week) but it was a lot of internalized, quiet joy at seeing the whole 'circle of life' idea presented so simply. As with "Mon Oncle" I felt afterwards that I chose the wrong movie because, even if its memorable, it didn't inspire much conversation afterwards. Looked 'purty' on dad's big-screen TV.

Other movies I had in my pouch that I didn't choose to be among the 'chosen' eight for dad and his wife: "The Usual Suspects," "Sansho the Bailiff," "Bonnie & Clyde," "Goodfellas," "The Iron Giant," "Atonement," "Paths of Glory," Ozu's "The Only Son," "Tin Cup," "Suspiria," "North by Northwest," "The Third Man," "Back to School," etc.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Future Man » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:12 am

Rarely can I get anyone other than my wife and kids to watch classic (read: anything issued before last week or so) films and when I try, it usually devolves into people talking over the movie (but not about the movie), snoozing, and/or gradually drifting away from the viewing area until I'm the only one sitting there, feeling like an idiot. So congratulations.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby molly1216 » Wed Dec 01, 2010 12:42 pm

Valhalla Rising (2009) which i watched twice and read the synopsis at the official site..and i still don't 'get it'.
not for one moment do i think that the character comes from the land where he finally ends up.
and he didn't managed to 'save' arn, now arn is not only alone but he's hell and gone from anywhere.
on the other hand...great fight scenes...only 120 lines of dialogue and the locations rock..literally.
so it's good, it just doesn't make much sense.
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Steve T Power » Wed Dec 01, 2010 1:49 pm

molly1216 wrote:Valhalla Rising (2009) which i watched twice and read the synopsis at the official site..and i still don't 'get it'.
not for one moment do i think that the character comes from the land where he finally ends up.
and he didn't managed to 'save' arn, now arn is not only alone but he's hell and gone from anywhere.
on the other hand...great fight scenes...only 120 lines of dialogue and the locations rock..literally.
so it's good, it just doesn't make much sense.


It's just crazy. That is all.
As the ancient Tibetan philosophy states:"Don't start none... won't be none...".
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Wed Dec 01, 2010 2:40 pm

The Lovely Bones - Oh Boy! Not sure what went wrong here. It isn't a total disaster as somehave claimed but it is a failure. Maybe the mixture between afterlife pablum and cinema just isn't meant to be. Jackson gives it his all but it never really works because there's no real narrative flowthrough- maybe the source material is to blame. Methinks he needs his Drag Me To Hell - something to bring him back to basics.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby the5thghostbuster » Wed Dec 01, 2010 3:22 pm

Been a bit busy and distracted, which has keep me from doing some reviews for what I have been watching on my blog. Hope to be back on track in December.

Anyways, been watching the following over the past month:

Dick Tracy, Detective - ok little B film, but nothing memorable.

Dick Tracy Vs. Gruesome - oh was this one fun :) Karloff is a blast in this, and the film is filled with the right kind of comic energy to be an entertaining little slice of low budget programing from the 1940s.

Man Made Monster (1941) reviewed it here: http://experiencecinematic.blogspot.com/2010/11/man-made-monster-waggner-1941.html

Captive Wild Women (1943) I will be reviewing this soon. Short version though: shockingly good and thematically complex, given the name and the premise of a scientist turning an ape into a human woman.

Silent Running reviewed here in full: http://experiencecinematic.blogspot.com/2010/11/silent-running-trumbull-1972.html

Xanadu - aweful...but I loved it for just how bad it is. Plus (and I know I will get killed for this) I actually love the soundtrack, enough to get it on itunes.

Dreamscape (1984) - working on a review. I found the film a failure, with Quaid stuck playing a second rate Harrison Ford and a completely conventional set of characers in a strandered assasination story that wastes the dream invasion set up.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby mavrach » Wed Dec 01, 2010 4:23 pm

Repo Man - Didn't like it at all, ended up turning it off about a half hour in (maybe I should put this in the "Confessions" thread too). I usually love these cult movies, so I'd always wanted to see it, so I sat there shocked as the movie did nothing for me whatsoever. The main thing was that the movie seemed to be made for very angry teenagers, so I felt like I wasn't the target audience.
+1. this is very interesting.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Wed Dec 01, 2010 6:54 pm

mavrach wrote:Repo Man - Didn't like it at all, ended up turning it off about a half hour in (maybe I should put this in the "Confessions" thread too). I usually love these cult movies, so I'd always wanted to see it, so I sat there shocked as the movie did nothing for me whatsoever. The main thing was that the movie seemed to be made for very angry teenagers, so I felt like I wasn't the target audience.


Yeah I couldn't watch it either. So many of these cult flicks are just not that good.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby the5thghostbuster » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:12 pm

My Dreamscape review: http://experiencecinematic.blogspot.com/2010/12/dreamscape-ruben-1984.html

EDIT: and sorry for the typos in the earlier post!
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Andrew Forbes » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:14 pm

Gabriel Girard wrote:
mavrach wrote:Repo Man - Didn't like it at all, ended up turning it off about a half hour in (maybe I should put this in the "Confessions" thread too). I usually love these cult movies, so I'd always wanted to see it, so I sat there shocked as the movie did nothing for me whatsoever. The main thing was that the movie seemed to be made for very angry teenagers, so I felt like I wasn't the target audience.

Yeah I couldn't watch it either. So many of these cult flicks are just not that good.

Whaaaat? Repo Man is so much fun and endlessly quotable! For me, it perfectly sums up the narcissism and emptiness of 80s suburbia, even if it is essentially a series of non sequiturs. And it's hella quotable.

"Let's go do some crimes."
"Yeah! Let's go get sushi and not pay!"

"The lights are growing dim, Otto. I know a life of crime has led me to this sorry fate, and yet, I blame society. Society made me what I am."
"That's bullshit. You're a white suburban punk just like me."
"Yeah, but it still hurts."
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Andrew Forbes » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:15 pm

The Seventh Seal. So, so good.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:28 pm

Andrew Forbes wrote:
Gabriel Girard wrote:
mavrach wrote:Repo Man - Didn't like it at all, ended up turning it off about a half hour in (maybe I should put this in the "Confessions" thread too). I usually love these cult movies, so I'd always wanted to see it, so I sat there shocked as the movie did nothing for me whatsoever. The main thing was that the movie seemed to be made for very angry teenagers, so I felt like I wasn't the target audience.

Yeah I couldn't watch it either. So many of these cult flicks are just not that good.

Whaaaat? Repo Man is so much fun and endlessly quotable! For me, it perfectly sums up the narcissism and emptiness of 80s suburbia, even if it is essentially a series of non sequiturs. And it's hella quotable.


It's been a while since I've tried it, I'll give it another shot just for your sake. Just as long as it's better than Buckaroo Banzai...
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby mavrach » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:36 pm

Gabriel Girard wrote:
Andrew Forbes wrote:
Gabriel Girard wrote:
mavrach wrote:Repo Man - Didn't like it at all, ended up turning it off about a half hour in (maybe I should put this in the "Confessions" thread too). I usually love these cult movies, so I'd always wanted to see it, so I sat there shocked as the movie did nothing for me whatsoever. The main thing was that the movie seemed to be made for very angry teenagers, so I felt like I wasn't the target audience.

Yeah I couldn't watch it either. So many of these cult flicks are just not that good.

Whaaaat? Repo Man is so much fun and endlessly quotable! For me, it perfectly sums up the narcissism and emptiness of 80s suburbia, even if it is essentially a series of non sequiturs. And it's hella quotable.


It's been a while since I've tried it, I'll give it another shot just for your sake. Just as long as it's better than Buckaroo Banzai...


And I kinda liked Buckaroo Banzai.
+1. this is very interesting.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby molly1216 » Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:59 pm

Repoman and Buckaroo Banzai are AWESOME!
" Repo Man's got all night, every night!"

i am shaking my head at all the blasphemies..i have lived too long when good movies are i indistinguishable from bad ones.
Perhaps they are movies 'of their times' but surely they are worth watching?
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Wed Dec 01, 2010 8:09 pm

molly1216 wrote:Repoman and Buckaroo Banzai are AWESOME!
" Repo Man's got all night, every night!"

i am shaking my head at all the blasphemies..i have lived too long when good movies are i indistinguishable from bad ones.
Perhaps they are movies 'of their times' but surely they are worth watching?


I think that they're just the type of movies that you either get or not at all. I watched like 20 mins of Buckaroo Banzai and felt as if I had lost precious time. Maybe it's blasphemy, but that's the way it goes.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby the5thghostbuster » Wed Dec 01, 2010 8:19 pm

molly1216 wrote:Repoman and Buckaroo Banzai are AWESOME!
" Repo Man's got all night, every night!"


Damn straight!
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby mavrach » Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:27 pm

Ulee's Gold - Loved it. I liked how they used music and technology to underscore the tension. In the first couple scenes, the background music is very soft, just about only a flute & piano. Then it's jarring to see the kid's car blasting rap music, followed by urban scenes as the conflict develops. I had my eye on this one for a while, and I'm sorry I didn't check it out sooner.
+1. this is very interesting.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Polynikes » Thu Dec 02, 2010 3:53 am

Andrew Forbes wrote:The Seventh Seal. So, so good.


I concur (Or "+1" which I believe is the appropriate internet expression). If faced with a "Desert Island DVD" scenario, The Seventh Seal would certainly be one of my choices. One day I hope to get round to buying it on DVD! It is such a treat to see its rare appearance in TV schedules, although sadly these tend to be in the small hours.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby the5thghostbuster » Thu Dec 02, 2010 11:31 am

Laura (1944) - a brilliant film no doubt, but somehow it left me cold. I can't quite put my finger on what is it that is keeping me from loving it, but it is just...something.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Andrew Forbes » Thu Dec 02, 2010 12:12 pm

the5thghostbuster wrote:Laura (1944) - a brilliant film no doubt, but somehow it left me cold. I can't quite put my finger on what is it that is keeping me from loving it, but it is just...something.

For me its a white-bread Vincent Price performance and Preminger's distaste for stylized lighting that keeps it from greatness. Price's character needed an underlying viciousness that doesn't come through in his Matlock-worthy performance, and the visual aesthetic should have skewed toward the Gothic to match the darkness and obsession of the narrative.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Dunnyman » Thu Dec 02, 2010 12:37 pm

Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows, OK, they summed up 75 pages into about five minutes of film very nicely to start off, getting all of the pertinent details taken care of without spending ages on it, and got right to the meat of the story. Many readers ripped the book for "lots of camping", but to me it heightened the sense of futility they felt, knowing what they had to do, but not knowing HOW to do it. Once again, they got it right on film, with the whole Ron bailing/coming back as a hero/back together as a team thing. The sequence inside the Ministry was very well done with the statues being as spooky as the book made them out to be. The stormtrooper Nazi-esque security guards were a nice touch as was Harry/Runcorn's wearing the long leather trenchcoat. I especially liked the desperation the Order of the Phoenix showed as they demand answers from each other to prove their identities. Really well done, but then David Thewlis is one hell of an actor, so not really surprising, and of course Helena Bonham Carter was equally splendid as the psycho-bitch-witch from Hell.
One question though, when Lovegood tells the story of the Hallows, we go to an animated telling which is fine, (and well done) but why in the hell didn't they simply ask Bonham Carter's squeeze to create it? I'm sure a little Burton would have been fine in there, or was he simply not a Brit?
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Bryan Pope » Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:05 pm

Dunnyman wrote:One question though, when Lovegood tells the story of the Hallows, we go to an animated telling which is fine, (and well done) but why in the hell didn't they simply ask Bonham Carter's squeeze to create it? I'm sure a little Burton would have been fine in there, or was he simply not a Brit?

Wasn't it Hermione who told the story? But, yes, that was a well done sequence. Personally, I thought it felt entirely Burtonesque even without him at the helm.

I agree with your entire assessment of the film, though. It demands that you be familiar with the story up to that point, and that's perfectly okay. I don't want it spending any time covering old ground just to get people up to speed.

Also, I disagree with people who thought the "camping" occupied too much space in the book. I thought it was necessary and appropriate, and I wasn't once bored. The movie handled that aspect well, too.

I liked the relative quiet of DH Pt. 1. It sets the stage and builds momentum for the wall-to-wall action that Part 2 will bring.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby the5thghostbuster » Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:11 pm

Andrew Forbes wrote:
the5thghostbuster wrote:Laura (1944) - a brilliant film no doubt, but somehow it left me cold. I can't quite put my finger on what is it that is keeping me from loving it, but it is just...something.

For me its a white-bread Vincent Price performance and Preminger's distaste for stylized lighting that keeps it from greatness. Price's character needed an underlying viciousness that doesn't come through in his Matlock-worthy performance, and the visual aesthetic should have skewed toward the Gothic to match the darkness and obsession of the narrative.


I can see how those would be problems. The more I think about it, the more I think my issue is with the character of McPherson. Within the film, every male views Laura as an attainment of something, but what is McPherson projecting into Laura? Is it only sexual? The character is too vague to really be able to come up with any real analysis of, and as a result, I am not sure I really buy into McPherson's increasing obsession with Laura.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:33 pm

The Leopard Man/The Ghost Ship - A great double feature. The first one is all about what lurks in the shadows and about fate. Again there are shades of M in a Lewton flick... The second one was about the misuse of authority, a great final act and a towering performance by Richard Dix. I only have to see The 7th Victim and I'll have seen all the movies in the boxset. I do need to rewatch Curse Of The Cat People and I Walked With A Zombie...
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby hoytereden » Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:02 pm

Gabriel Girard wrote:The Leopard Man/The Ghost Ship - A great double feature. The first one is all about what lurks in the shadows and about fate. Again there are shades of M in a Lewton flick... The second one was about the misuse of authority, a great final act and a towering performance by Richard Dix. I only have to see The 7th Victim and I'll have seen all the movies in the boxset. I do need to rewatch Curse Of The Cat People and I Walked With A Zombie...

Finally, someone else who enjoys The Ghost Ship-very underrated film IMO. I think you'll like The 7th Victim it even has none other than Ward Cleaver himself, Hugh Beaumont, in it.
Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now! :o
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Thu Dec 02, 2010 11:26 pm

The 7th Victim - That was amazing. Easily Robson's best collaboration with Lewton. A great mystery story that culminates in a very German Expressiont-like sequence with Jacqueline running in the street. Death seems to be the surrounding theme in this film, lots of ticking clocks.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby mavrach » Fri Dec 03, 2010 12:05 am

Teeth - I couldn't tell if this was going to be a "horror-porn" like Saw, but after reading the glowing review here and having Netflix recommend it to me, I gave it a shot. Sure, I spent half the movie with my legs crossed, but it was still effective overall. The subject matter is going to scare off most people, but those willing to check it out will find a good story.

Irreversible - I thought it was a bit too artistic to actually be enjoyable, if that makes any sense. I mean 20 minutes of woozy spinning shots don't make for a great movie, but there was a lot of power here. And if you can seperate yourself from the intensity of the murder & rape scenes, you can see that just about everything is a long take. I mean there's one shot where they're talking while waiting for the subway, then they get on the subway (it's real) and it makes stops while people get on & off. I thought that was impressive. And the reversed-order of the story really gives the calm scenes a darkness, because the more happy they are, they're actually sadder because it's that much more of a loss because you've seen what happens.
+1. this is very interesting.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby mavrach » Fri Dec 03, 2010 2:13 am

Centurion - I'm seriously starting to love Neil Marshall's work. He makes so much out of so little. I mean this movie is pretty much some tents and costumes in the woods, and he gives you a period piece. He took some crappy wolf suits and army uniforms and gave us Dog Soldiers. Is it too much to call him a modern-day John Carpenter yet?
+1. this is very interesting.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby J.M. Vargas » Fri Dec 03, 2010 8:30 am

^^^ Neil is one big Hollywood movie (probably a super hero sequel or reboot) away from being a household name, which will trigger a revisit of his earlier work that will make people ask 'why didn't we check out this guy's movies earlier?' Right now he's only known to cinephiles, but Marshall's skill and technique are mainstream-enough for the right big-budget vehicle when it comes.
hoyterenden wrote:Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now!

It's playing right now at the Film Forum here in NYC. If you liked "Dunes" then rent/get the Criterion Teshigahara Box Set ASAP (or during the next B&N sale). "Pitfall" is OK (not as good as "Dunes" though) but "The Face of Another" is every bit as inventine, weird and awesome as "Dunes"; great extras to boot (lots of short films that give you an idea where Teshigahara got the inspiration for "Dunes"). Also, if you're in a "Baraka" sort-of mood, "Antonio Gaudi" (also on Criterion DVD) is highly recommended.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Andrew Forbes » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:23 am

mavrach wrote:Is it too much to call him a modern-day John Carpenter yet?

Aside from Marshall's homages to Carpenter in Doomsday, I don't really see any similarities between the two. Carpenter relied on mood and a deliberate pace. Marshall's films are frenetic, action-driven affairs. Carpenter has a unique visual style. Marshall, while not without talent, lacks a distinctive visual approach. Carpenter loved to subvert genre expectations. Marshall tends to adhere to them. I guess they both distrust authority, or portray it as corrupt.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Steve T Power » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:42 am

Andrew Forbes wrote:
mavrach wrote:Is it too much to call him a modern-day John Carpenter yet?

Aside from Marshall's homages to Carpenter in Doomsday, I don't really see any similarities between the two. Carpenter relied on mood and a deliberate pace. Marshall's films are frenetic, action-driven affairs. Carpenter has a unique visual style. Marshall, while not without talent, lacks a distinctive visual approach. Carpenter loved to subvert genre expectations. Marshall tends to adhere to them. I guess they both distrust authority, or portray it as corrupt.


And they're both awesome, though Carpenter didn't have much of a run after his first decade. But I'd stack Marshall's first four up with Carpenter's first four any day of the week. I'd put Michael J. Bassett in the pool right next to Marshall as well, based on Deathwatch and Solomon Kane. Both awesome, competently made genre flicks.

as for watching:

Hunter Prey - Yeah, Batman: Dead End was kinda cool and all, so the idea of a full length feature from Sandy Collara definitely intrigued me. Judge Pritchard pretty much nails it in his review. The flick feels like something that you'd see screened a your local sci-fi or comic book convention, it's kind of fan-film-ish, but damn if it isn't a fun time anyway, and the first time the "prisoner" removed his mask, we were all like, "Wooooaaahhhh!!!". It wouldn't have felt out of place on a video shelf next to Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone or Battle Beyond the Stars. I'll definitely be picking up a copy of my own. I see this one playing best in a room full of about 200 people in Star Wars and Star Trek costumes.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby the5thghostbuster » Fri Dec 03, 2010 10:55 am

Angel-A - I am going to be thinking this one through for a while. On one hand,this is the most beautiful film Luc Besson since The Fifth Element, and I love his use of space in this film, transforming Paris into a dominating, disorienting, and cold enviroment, and the film's exploration of identity and the self are rather more complex than typical for Besson. However, I am not sure the final fifteen minutes quite work for me, feeling more as if Besson is slapping a "happy" ending onto the film for the hell of it, while also being somewhat in conflict thematically with what has come before.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby mavrach » Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:22 am

Andrew Forbes wrote:
mavrach wrote:Is it too much to call him a modern-day John Carpenter yet?

Aside from Marshall's homages to Carpenter in Doomsday, I don't really see any similarities between the two. Carpenter relied on mood and a deliberate pace. Marshall's films are frenetic, action-driven affairs. Carpenter has a unique visual style. Marshall, while not without talent, lacks a distinctive visual approach. Carpenter loved to subvert genre expectations. Marshall tends to adhere to them. I guess they both distrust authority, or portray it as corrupt.


That's true, but Marshall reminds me of Carpenter more because his movies appear to be little unimportant B-movies on the surface. But once you give them a fair shot, you see that they're truly great movies.
+1. this is very interesting.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby hoytereden » Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:48 am

J.M. Vargas wrote:
hoyterenden wrote:Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now!

It's playing right now at the Film Forum here in NYC. If you liked "Dunes" then rent/get the Criterion Teshigahara Box Set ASAP (or during the next B&N sale). "Pitfall" is OK (not as good as "Dunes" though) but "The Face of Another" is every bit as inventine, weird and awesome as "Dunes"; great extras to boot (lots of short films that give you an idea where Teshigahara got the inspiration for "Dunes"). Also, if you're in a "Baraka" sort-of mood, "Antonio Gaudi" (also on Criterion DVD) is highly recommended.

I had seen The Face of Another quite some time back and recently found out my friend here in Hilo had it. Long story short-He let me borrow the box set and I saw Woman in the Dunes for the first time. Totally hypnotic film. Currently watching Pitfall.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Andrew Forbes » Fri Dec 03, 2010 4:44 pm

mavrach wrote:
Andrew Forbes wrote:
mavrach wrote:Is it too much to call him a modern-day John Carpenter yet?

Aside from Marshall's homages to Carpenter in Doomsday, I don't really see any similarities between the two. Carpenter relied on mood and a deliberate pace. Marshall's films are frenetic, action-driven affairs. Carpenter has a unique visual style. Marshall, while not without talent, lacks a distinctive visual approach. Carpenter loved to subvert genre expectations. Marshall tends to adhere to them. I guess they both distrust authority, or portray it as corrupt.

That's true, but Marshall reminds me of Carpenter more because his movies appear to be little unimportant B-movies on the surface. But once you give them a fair shot, you see that they're truly great movies.

I would say that's true of The Descent. Beyond that... enh, not so much. Hella fun, sure, but I definitely wouldn't classify Doomsday or Centurion as great movies. Dog Soldiers actually contains a character named Spoon, solely so that another character can later say, "There is no Spoon."
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Dunnyman » Sat Dec 04, 2010 3:33 am

hoytereden wrote:
Gabriel Girard wrote:The Leopard Man/The Ghost Ship - A great double feature. The first one is all about what lurks in the shadows and about fate. Again there are shades of M in a Lewton flick... The second one was about the misuse of authority, a great final act and a towering performance by Richard Dix. I only have to see The 7th Victim and I'll have seen all the movies in the boxset. I do need to rewatch Curse Of The Cat People and I Walked With A Zombie...

Finally, someone else who enjoys The Ghost Ship-very underrated film IMO. I think you'll like The 7th Victim it even has none other than Ward Cleaver himself, Hugh Beaumont, in it.
Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now! :o

What's with all the Val Lewton love of late? How did y'all miss this during October?
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Sat Dec 04, 2010 9:55 am

Dunnyman wrote:
hoytereden wrote:
Gabriel Girard wrote:The Leopard Man/The Ghost Ship - A great double feature. The first one is all about what lurks in the shadows and about fate. Again there are shades of M in a Lewton flick... The second one was about the misuse of authority, a great final act and a towering performance by Richard Dix. I only have to see The 7th Victim and I'll have seen all the movies in the boxset. I do need to rewatch Curse Of The Cat People and I Walked With A Zombie...

Finally, someone else who enjoys The Ghost Ship-very underrated film IMO. I think you'll like The 7th Victim it even has none other than Ward Cleaver himself, Hugh Beaumont, in it.
Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now! :o

What's with all the Val Lewton love of late? How did y'all miss this during October?


Actually I did watch The Body Snatcher during October but for some reason I didn't get to the rest of the set until now. ;-) Isn't it better to have watched when I felt like watching them instead of when I ''had'' to ? And I seem to be the only one watching them now anyways, so that makes me ''special''.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby molly1216 » Sat Dec 04, 2010 4:23 pm

Doctor Who Season 5 I am of two hearts about this one. Smith is far and away dissimilar to previous 2 Doctors and hence cannot be compared with them. He is playing a younger more bouncy puppy wacky professor Doctor than any of the last few predecessors; perhaps more Tom Baker mark II. He can't pull of any sort of deep scary voice Doctor as could 9 and 10 - but then they haven't had him try. If i had never seen Tenant I would say that he is my favorite doctor..but alas....

Watchmen on this second viewing I can truly say that i liked it more....this time i approached it as just a 'movie' and not a comic book movie. i actually thing it's better than the book. I am sure most folks who expected an action hero movie thought it was talky and tended to drag when it gave each of its characters the spotlight. I definitely think it's a really decent epic novel.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby hoytereden » Sun Dec 05, 2010 12:12 am

Dunnyman wrote:
hoytereden wrote:
Gabriel Girard wrote:The Leopard Man/The Ghost Ship - A great double feature. The first one is all about what lurks in the shadows and about fate. Again there are shades of M in a Lewton flick... The second one was about the misuse of authority, a great final act and a towering performance by Richard Dix. I only have to see The 7th Victim and I'll have seen all the movies in the boxset. I do need to rewatch Curse Of The Cat People and I Walked With A Zombie...

Finally, someone else who enjoys The Ghost Ship-very underrated film IMO. I think you'll like The 7th Victim it even has none other than Ward Cleaver himself, Hugh Beaumont, in it.
Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now! :o

What's with all the Val Lewton love of late? How did y'all miss this during October?

Of Late??? Hell, I've loved Lewton films since I was a kid and that was about a hundred Octobers ago.
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Moe-"Were you scared?" Larry-"No, just apprehensive." Moe-"Apprehensive, that's a pretty big word.What's it mean?" Larry-"That's scared with a college education!"
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby molly1216 » Sun Dec 05, 2010 7:04 am

hoytereden wrote:
Dunnyman wrote:
hoytereden wrote:
Gabriel Girard wrote:The Leopard Man/The Ghost Ship - A great double feature. The first one is all about what lurks in the shadows and about fate. Again there are shades of M in a Lewton flick... The second one was about the misuse of authority, a great final act and a towering performance by Richard Dix. I only have to see The 7th Victim and I'll have seen all the movies in the boxset. I do need to rewatch Curse Of The Cat People and I Walked With A Zombie...

Finally, someone else who enjoys The Ghost Ship-very underrated film IMO. I think you'll like The 7th Victim it even has none other than Ward Cleaver himself, Hugh Beaumont, in it.
Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now! :o

What's with all the Val Lewton love of late? How did y'all miss this during October?

Of Late??? Hell, I've loved Lewton films since I was a kid and that was about a hundred Octobers ago.

I think he was just commenting that someone is just DISCOVERING Lewton.

okay - all you Lewtonians dig out your box sets and watch ONE film in solidarity.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby molly1216 » Sun Dec 05, 2010 8:06 am

Finished a POTC marathon and i have a couple of questions...Davy Jones 'says' he can't go on land for another 10 years..then how can he be on the sand spit for the negotiations? that's land. what was the function of the dirt in the jar..if you can just walk around with it wrapped in a rag..or it can just as easily be in a jar without dirt. besides ALL of those things and many more....tell me again WHY pirates murderers and thieves are the heroes again? nevermind..i will just find some rum.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Dunnyman » Sun Dec 05, 2010 12:22 pm

molly1216 wrote:
hoytereden wrote:
Dunnyman wrote:
hoytereden wrote:
Gabriel Girard wrote:The Leopard Man/The Ghost Ship - A great double feature. The first one is all about what lurks in the shadows and about fate. Again there are shades of M in a Lewton flick... The second one was about the misuse of authority, a great final act and a towering performance by Richard Dix. I only have to see The 7th Victim and I'll have seen all the movies in the boxset. I do need to rewatch Curse Of The Cat People and I Walked With A Zombie...

Finally, someone else who enjoys The Ghost Ship-very underrated film IMO. I think you'll like The 7th Victim it even has none other than Ward Cleaver himself, Hugh Beaumont, in it.
Watched Woman in the Dunes-What a fascinating film! How have I not seen this until now! :o

What's with all the Val Lewton love of late? How did y'all miss this during October?

Of Late??? Hell, I've loved Lewton films since I was a kid and that was about a hundred Octobers ago.

I think he was just commenting that someone is just DISCOVERING Lewton.

okay - all you Lewtonians dig out your box sets and watch ONE film in solidarity.

OK, The 7th Victim it is...my fave I think.
However it will have to be after my Raiders dismantle the Chargers.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby J.M. Vargas » Sun Dec 05, 2010 2:54 pm

Just saw Masaki Kobayashi's HYMN OF A TIRED MAN (1968) at NYC's Film Forum tribute to composer Tore Takemitsu. Imagine if Kaji from "Human Condition" (who the lead of "Hymn..." resembles character-wise), 23 years after the end of of WWII, (a) married & had kids with someone other than Michiko but then (b) an older Michiko came back into his life. Kobayashi approaches this as a soap opera (Takemitsu scores is OTT cheesy during the present day scenes) but things grow darker, more poignant and gut-wrenching as the story unfolds while brief flashbacks (and often flashbacks-within-flashbacks) fill-in the WWII trauma coloring the traumatized lead's actions as he moves through a modernized Japan burying the sacrifices of the war into the past. The gimmick of having middle-aged Yosiko Zensaku's (Michiyo Aratama) inner-voice debating between himself with a mocking alter ego (think inner-voice from "Blast of Silence" in Japanese) works both as comic relief and to tell us what is happening when Yosiko's bland expressions don't clue us in what the hell he's doing (or why). It's a fascinating auto-biographical companion piece to "Human Condition" (and, indirectly, to Kurosawa's "Ikiru") since the WWII scenes are confined to a few select flashbacks (about 10 out of 130 minutes) but the physical/emotional scars as Yosiko runs into his past (older girlfriend, a remorseless bad-ass Kei Satô as the military man that injured Yosiko) and present (ignored wife, Toshio Kurosawa as Yosiko's politically-rebellious son) could have been lifted straight from Kobayashi's private life. Ample time is given to the parallel story of Zensaku's son becoming his own man, one that is both respectful and resentful of his old man because of the lack (and also because of acquired) knowledge about Japan's political/social reality then (WWII) and now ('68). For a movie dealing with as uncomfortable a subject as the WWII past "Hymn to a Tired Man" is often incredibly moving, inspiring and also hilarious.

Ironically, since he's the reason Film Forum organized the festival in the first place, Takemitsu's score was the least interesting part of the movie because there's so little of it, although some densely complex instrumentalization sneak up during the brief WWII flashbacks. As good and landmark as "Human Condition" is, "Hymn To A Tired Man" drives home even stronger Kobayashi's pacifist ideas and attempts to confront unpleasant history straight-up by exploring how it affects those that lived through it and those brought up afterwards. Running into Hiroshi Teshigahara's daughter in the lobby of Film Forum (she came to see "Hymn..." on her own) made the experience complete.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Gabriel Girard » Sun Dec 05, 2010 3:44 pm

Perdita Durango - That was great fun. The script isn't anything new but the stylish direction and the performances by Javier Bardem and Rosie Perez make it something truly special.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Andrew Forbes » Sun Dec 05, 2010 4:15 pm

Valhalla Rising SPOILERS

molly1216 wrote:Valhalla Rising (2009) which i watched twice and read the synopsis at the official site..and i still don't 'get it'.
not for one moment do i think that the character comes from the land where he finally ends up.
and he didn't managed to 'save' arn, now arn is not only alone but he's hell and gone from anywhere.
on the other hand...great fight scenes...only 120 lines of dialogue and the locations rock..literally.
so it's good, it just doesn't make much sense.

I'm not surprised that you're confused, given that the synopsis on the site gets the story wrong.

We're not meant to believe that One Eye is from North America. Keep in mind that all of the characters are deeply superstitious and attempt to reason through their circumstances with half-understood concepts from their mixed pagan and Christian heritage. They think One Eye, a stoic, deadly, silent threat, is from Hell. And faced with a new and lethal environment, they assume they've stumbled into it.

No, he didn't save Are in the sense that the boy is still more or less doomed to death through starvation, but there seemed to be a tacit understanding that he was trading his life for Are's immediate survival. The film's deliberately obtuse ambiguity serves to put the audience in the position of the characters: faced with an unforgiving world devoid of reason; challenged with making sense of the senseless; stuck with the brutality and desperation that drives this most basic level of survival, and left with no answers at the end. It's bleak stuff, but probably the best representation of ancient life I've seen in a movie. I loved it. It would make a great double feature with Aguirre: The Wrath of God.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby molly1216 » Sun Dec 05, 2010 5:38 pm

SPOLIERS AHEAD - though it may be a warning

Andrew Forbes wrote:Valhalla Rising SPOILERS

molly1216 wrote:Valhalla Rising (2009) which i watched twice and read the synopsis at the official site..and i still don't 'get it'.
not for one moment do i think that the character comes from the land where he finally ends up.
and he didn't managed to 'save' arn, now arn is not only alone but he's hell and gone from anywhere.
on the other hand...great fight scenes...only 120 lines of dialogue and the locations rock..literally.
so it's good, it just doesn't make much sense.

I'm not surprised that you're confused, given that the synopsis on the site gets the story wrong.

We're not meant to believe that One Eye is from North America. Keep in mind that all of the characters are deeply superstitious and attempt to reason through their circumstances with half-understood concepts from their mixed pagan and Christian heritage. They think One Eye, a stoic, deadly, silent threat, is from Hell. And faced with a new and lethal environment, they assume they've stumbled into it.

No, he didn't save Are in the sense that the boy is still more or less doomed to death through starvation, but there seemed to be a tacit understanding that he was trading his life for Are's immediate survival. The film's deliberately obtuse ambiguity serves to put the audience in the position of the characters: faced with an unforgiving world devoid of reason; challenged with making sense of the senseless; stuck with the brutality and desperation that drives this most basic level of survival, and left with no answers at the end. It's bleak stuff, but probably the best representation of ancient life I've seen in a movie. I loved it. It would make a great double feature with Aguirre: The Wrath of God
.


One Eye made good choices all the way through and then gets to end and made a riproaringly bad one?
bad story telling all around.
in a hollywood movie the ideal ending would have been for them to JOIN these warriors.
in a grownup, movie he would have died defending the boy and they would have taken the boy into their clan.
in a nihilistic european ending, both of them would have been killed
just leaving it with 1 stupid decision that accomplishing nothing just makes me angry.
it's like the director is playing a practical joke.
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby mavrach » Sun Dec 05, 2010 6:05 pm

Battle Royale - I'd been wanting to see this for ages, just based on the synopsis of a class of 8th graders trapped on an island and forced to kill each other until one person remains. That's got to be the most awesome basis for a movie that I've ever heard of. So I finally Netflixed it and loved it.

The first 20 minutes or so were as ridiculous and kick-ass as I'd been imaging. The highlight was the perky Japanese girl describing the rules while making it sound like a silly game show. Once the movie got rolling, I was a little disappointed that a bulk of the action focused on two "transfers" who had nothing to do with the class. I was looking forward to seeing what average kids would do if they were forced to kill one another, but they're there with a psycho and a veteran who take up most of the kills. Aside from that I couldn't recommend this movie more highly.
+1. this is very interesting.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Future Man » Mon Dec 06, 2010 10:19 am

Sleuth (1972) for the second time in the last 15 years, which is about how long I'd wait to watch it again. Spoilers...I don't know if it's due to enhanced video resolution in the 15 year since I've seen this or what, but it was almost immediately apparent to my wife (watching it for the first time) who the inspector is. I'm glad that there were further twists, because if the 'third' character was the main twist, it would have seemed like a very long movie.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby Future Man » Thu Dec 09, 2010 8:37 am

The Night of the Hunter Blu
I say this is overrated. Yes the lighting and overall style are very innovative and Mitchum’s character is certainly memorable but dramatically speaking the story is not well told. The climax is ill-staged and what follows with the townspeople is hard to follow or even comprehend. Perhaps worst of all, the (rural) secondary characters are condescendingly presented as garish stereotypes especially concerning their religious beliefs and practices.
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Re: All I Want for Xmas is my DECEMBER Watching Thread!

Postby J.M. Vargas » Thu Dec 09, 2010 9:00 am

^^^ Maybe Laughton felt like returning in kind the two-dimensional portrayal (or back then, non-existant portrayal in movies on TV but demonization) of homosexuality as evil scum to be hated and feared because 'the good book' told you so? ;-)
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