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Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #100 on: March 08, 2019, 06:34:43 PM »
Chichewa, subtitles



The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind (2019), directed by Chiwetel Ejiofor

Let's keep it going with debut films, shall we? I intend to see one in theaters next week as well, but this is a particularly interesting debut film in that it is a film not in the director's native language. This would seem to be a difficult task. I decided to look up some reactions in Malawi to Ejiofor's use of the language, and people didn't like it. Well, the thing is, as someone who doesn't know the language, the subtitles suffice and the performances are what shine through. I am, however, not too surprised that this was Ejiofor's first feature effort from the director's chair. This is exactly the kind of story that the Western world is not too aware of, of the struggles that others encounter and their difficulty surviving life on this planet. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is also a film that reminds one of their advantages in life, of the things that we complain about that actually aren't important. What else bothers me is that we have these problems all around the world, including in our own country, and we don't actually do anything about them. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is adapted from a book, it is a true story, and it's one that left me a bit taken aback. I've already explained what my thoughts were, but why did this film pull those emotions from me and those thoughts out of my head?

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind is set in Malawi, in a village outside the capital where famine has taken hold. There are reasons why this is, an inconsistent rainy season that leads to either floods or dry land and no crops. Sometimes things are good, but usually not. William Kamkwamba (Maxwell Simba) is a young man who lives with his family in the aforementioned small village of Wimbe, his focus is on school. William also fixes radios for his friends at times, using simple technology from the local junkyard. There is a problem though. The famine has taken hold and even though his father Trywell (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and mother Agnes (Aissa Maiga) have saved money, this isn't going to be enough. All they were able to grow was corn, and not a whole lot of it. Due to this, and due to flooding, these problems keep continuing to add up and Trywell is no longer going to be able to send William to school. The film is set in 2001, before 9/11, times are much different everywhere. The intention was to send William's sister Annie (Lily Banda) to university, but now that's not going to be able to happen. Their hope is that with what they have, and with some of their stores, they will be able to make it through the year.

There are other issues though that lead to more flooding. For example, due to the rainy season, other farmers are selling their land, including some of those with trees on it. That leads to trees being demolished and to more flooding, all of this is happening because the chief (Joseph Marcell) is powerless to stop it. He cannot support everyone else. Eventually, the lack of tuition fees add up, and that leads to William being kicked out of school. This is not good for the family, because he is learning even though nobody will listen to him. Then 9/11 happens. The markets crash, food costs skyrocket, and Malawi is one of the world's least developed countries. It's a country lacking in food for many reasons, but at this time there was a horrible food shortage. Malnourishment was prominent, this was said to be the worst famine in the history of the country. Electricity was also not common for citizens, and certainly not in William's family. His intention is to find a way to help his family and save his village from the drought, he does have a few ideas. His teacher Mr. Kachigunda (Lemogang Tsipa) has a dynamo attached to his bike, the electricity he generates allows his bike to have light at night. William needs to find a way to replicate this so he can create a windmill, but more pressing is the need for immediate food. The situation is not good, and he's booted from school, but he also knows that Mr. Kachigunda is seeing his sister. This information could prove to be a valuable tool.

I probably did a bad job describing The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, but I thought the depiction of famine and what people will do in order to be able to eat was something I really needed to see at this time. It's a reminder to be grateful for what I have, something that people really need. One should not take for granted what has been given to them, and even though this country isn't great, I'm glad I was born here and not in Malawi. I thought the film was good in showcasing famine without falling into tropes where people do all kinds of horrible things that make Africans look bad, the story properly humanized the characters so that people could understand why people do these things for their family. The presentation that people are savages, which has happened in quite a few films about the continent, that isn't here at all. Some of the events here are very sad, and I was left in sadness as some of these scenes played out. There are things people in our country do not account for when a person is really starving. The familiarity of pets, or of school in a country where there is no public school, or of new clothes, or of bathing, those are things that all disappear when one can't eat. This struggle is something anyone can understand if they've truly been poor. I thought the scenes once the famine really kicked in were absolutely heartbreaking, and I had to resist the temptation to minimize. They weren't too painful to watch, but when you see people getting beaten up for having food, that's so sad.

I think Ejiofor was careful to frame Malawi in a way that didn't make the country look bad, and that it's any other place that one could have wound up being born in, and this touch really worked for me. I do think there's an issue with some of his directing though, particularly the placement of musical pieces that doesn't feel too right. That's okay though. What this is, is quite a powerful film. The story is very simple, and even though I did also find there to be some issues with the timeline not being entirely clear to the viewer, or at least to myself, I'm fine with that. For someone's first effort, I think this is a fantastic film. I don't want to discredit someone's first try, particularly a noted actor like Ejiofor. I prefer not to focus on the negatives in that case. His performance was excellent, as always, and so was his effort in directing the whole thing. It seemed clear this was a labor of love, that this was something he really wanted to make, and he did well enough with the language that he felt comfortable speaking quickly and screaming as he's known to do in pivotal scenes. I also loved seeing Geoffrey finally return from exile post-Fresh Prince. I haven't seen him do ANYTHING since then. Lastly, I was left with the thought that this year has started off very nicely. There are more good films at the start of this year than last, with this being among the best of them. I recommend checking this out.

7.5/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Arctic
2.   High Flying Bird
3.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
4.   Captain Marvel
5.   Paddleton
6.   Cold Pursuit
7.   Happy Death Day 2U
8.   Greta
9.   Fighting with My Family
10.   Velvet Buzzsaw
11.   Alita: Battle Angel
12.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
13.   The Upside
14.   Escape Room
15.   What Men Want
16.   Miss Bala
17.   Glass
18.   The Prodigy
19.   Polar
20.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #101 on: March 09, 2019, 07:07:24 PM »


Murder on the Orient Express (2017), directed by Kenneth Branagh

So, remakes of extremely famous adaptations of great novels. I don't really know what to think of that, but I think that in the case of Murder on the Orient Express, it was a wise decision to produce this film. That way, the producers would know if there was a greater appetite for Agatha Christie adaptations. As we now know, there is, and as a result there are probably going to be many more of these. Even though Murder on the Orient Express is not a particularly great film, said adaptations are quite welcome. There are very few murder mysteries made these days, even less of them set in a different period, and the setting for Death on the Nile is obviously a bit unique to Hollywood. I'm very happy with this. Now, that all being said, I think the quality of the films is going to have to improve at some point. This was simply the story everyone knew, but could the actors really add anything to the version everyone's aware of? Look at the difference in casts, and while this was a very strong cast, there's no comparison at all. The more familiar film featured Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Sean Connery, Albert Finney, Vanessa Redgrave, Michael York, Jacqueline Bisset, and Anthony Perkins. That's major star power, and that's a cast. Hollywood can no longer truly do such a thing. So, with everything in mind, is it surprising that Kenneth Branagh was unable to create a film that was different from an adaptation that has already been remade many times? I should note that if you don't know the story, it's actually quite alright.

This is a film set in 1934, with Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh) solving a theft in Jerusalem. I will leave out some of the details. After solving the case, he's given a message that tells him he needs to return to London for another case. In order to do so, he must travel to Istanbul and take a ride on the Orient Express, even though that isn't what he wants to do. His original intention is to travel to Istanbul for leisure, but his friend Bouc (Tom Bateman) is related to someone affiliated with the Orient Express line, and as such he can get a ticket on short notice. In the station in Istanbul, we are introduced to numerous characters. I will wait a while to get to that, but I'm stunned this film had a $55 million budget. It simply doesn't stand to reason. Once Poirot gets on the train, it's quite a long trip through snow all the way to London, a look at a map will tell you that. Another thing is that some of the passengers naturally take interest in Poirot because he's very noted around the world for solving these cases, something which Poirot finds to be a problem and a bit difficult to handle. His services are consistently in demand and it's hard to balance his life properly.

Now, the passengers. There are many of them, including Gerhard (Willem Dafoe), a Nazi who says a lot of bad shit; Princess Dragomiroff (Judi Dench), old European royalty who travels with her second, Hildegarde (Olivia Colman); Mary Debenham (Daisy Ridley) and her partner Dr. Arbuthnot (Leslie Odom Jr.), the latter of whom is the only black man on board; Pilar (Penelope Cruz), a newly religious individual; Marquez (Manuel Garcia-Rulfo), a man just passing on through; Caroline (Michelle Pfeiffer), an older woman who seems to be interested in Poirot; and two members of royalty we hardly see, Count Rudolph Andrenyi (Sergei Polunin) and Countess Helena (Lucy Boynton). But, those are not the most nefarious people on this train. Those honors reside with Edward Ratchett (Johnny Depp) and Hector MacQueen (Josh Gad). They're accompanied by a man called Edward (Derek Jacobi), but his role here is not large. Hector is Ratchett's assistant, but Ratchett himself is messed up. Our first encounter with him is one where he attempts to hire Poirot as a bodyguard, pulling a gun on him because he's received threatening letters he doesn't know the origin of. That's not going to happen. The thing is, after some events that occur, an avalanche derails the train. Ratchett has already been a piece of shit to many people on board, and when everyone wakes up the next morning...he's dead. Now watch the movie or read the book.

It's hard to talk about something like this if you don't know the story, because it's the kind of thing that's easily spoiled, but the fact remains that this is a great story. This is also not an original presentation of the story, and there are ways which one could tell the story in a different fashion. You could, for example, update things to modern times and change stuff. Or tell the story in a different setting entire. But that seems to defeat the purpose of adapting something and it's a weird criticism. No, the film is not like the original, that much is clear. How could it be? This is a great cast but the talent level is lacking particularly among the male actors, there's no Sean Connery here. I don't have anything against anyone who participated in this production, but that is what it is. I also thought there was an instance of this film trading on your knowledge of these actors rather than creating cohesive characters for all of them. Some do and some don't, but the original film was 131 minutes and did not have the Jerusalem scene. I should also point out that I won't hold too much against the film because this is obviously a gateway production to something greater. Murder on the Orient Express is also ridiculously focused on Poirot to its detriment, but directors always do that when they feature in their own film.

The juice though, it's in the story and the mystery, and as long as the film has that, it's going to be alright. I think I would say it's alright, wouldn't go further than that. The cast needed to be utilized better, but I did appreciate the introductory scenes in Istanbul. If one pays attention, they can see some of the early building relationships, but I must admit that I did not see the conclusion coming. I will watch the original film at some point, but that probably won't be for a while. The real intrigue is in whether or not Death on the Nile is any good. If it isn't, then Branagh should step aside as the director and let someone else have a crack, because there really is a lot of potential here for a long running franchise. People miss stories like this, or even like Gone Girl, so when they're made, the general public is going to get hyped for them. I would ordinarily comment on the performances of the cast, but I found that there were too many characters in general and as a result too many people to mention. This is probably why the cast was attracted to the project, there weren't too many scenes each individual person would have to participate in. I did, however, really appreciate learning that Daisy Ridley could act. All I've seen her in is Star Wars, of course, but this was nice to see from her.

As always, if there are inconsistencies in my list relative to the scores I gave those movies, it's because I had time to think.

6/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Logan
4.   Wonder Woman
5.   The Big Sick
6.   Thor: Ragnarok
7.   Logan Lucky
8.   The Beguiled
9.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
10.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
11.   The Lost City of Z
12.   First They Killed My Father
13.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
14.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
15.   It
16.   Battle of the Sexes
17.   Okja
18.   Kong: Skull Island
19.   It Comes at Night
20.   Split
21.   1922
22.   Personal Shopper
23.   Chuck
24.   Atomic Blonde
25.   Wheelman
26.   The Lego Batman Movie
27.   Megan Leavey
28.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
29.   American Made
30.   Beauty and the Beast
31.   Imperial Dreams
32.   Murder on the Orient Express
33.   The Zookeeper's Wife
34.   Free Fire
35.   Win It All
36.   The Wall
37.   Breathe
38.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
39.   Alone in Berlin
40.   A United Kingdom
41.   Trespass Against Us
42.   The Mountain Between Us
43.   War Machine
44.   Happy Death Day
45.   Justice League
46.   To the Bone
47.   Wakefield
48.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
49.   Sand Castle
50.   CHiPs
51.   Death Note
52.   The Belko Experiment
53.   The Great Wall
54.   Fist Fight
55.   Wilson
56.   Queen of the Desert
57.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #102 on: March 10, 2019, 01:59:37 PM »


The Kid (2019), directed by Vincent D'Onofrio

So, debut directing efforts. This is a subject which has continued to be prevalent in my reviews because I watch a lot of independent movies, but this one is not an independent. Instead, this seems to be a few things. One possibility is that this was a favor to D'Onofrio, another is that Lionsgate actually really wanted to make the film. Something else that's coming to mind is that it didn't cost too much to make this Western, and I really don't think that it did. D'Onofrio was able to get a good cast and use family members to fill other roles, but more than that, he found someone to fund their kid being in a movie. That, more than anything else, is how someone can get their debut film made. The thing is, even though this did feature a first time teenage actor in a very important role, his performance was not bad. I wouldn't say great, but not bad. More like above average or good. I think anyone who wants to direct their first movie would do what it takes, but I think I would say that if someone was directing their first movie, character development is a necessity. Some of that would go a long way, but The Kid does not have character development where the film really needs it.

The Kid begins with a messy prologue, but quite an effective one even though we never get a good look at all the participants. Rio (Jake Schur) is a teenager who lives at home in the Old West, New Mexico to be specific, with his sister Sara (Leila George) and his parents. There's a problem at home though, his father is very abusive. The first series of scenes features his father trying to beat his mother to death and succeeding at doing so. Rio, as alluded to, is too late to do something about it. The thing is, guns are quite prevalent in America at this time. Rio's able to get one and shoot his dad to death, which leads to a commotion from outside. Rio's dad was a piece of shit, seemingly nothing compared to Rio's uncle Grant (Chris Pratt). Grant intends to kill Rio for what he's done, but Rio takes a piece of glass and stabs Grant in the face, gashing him open. Afterwards, Rio and Sara make their escape, running as far as they can and eventually stealing some horses. Let's move forward to the next morning, when after some rest they intend to go to Santa Fe. They aren't getting to Santa Fe. When they finally stir, they are joined by some interesting folks, namely among them Billy the Kid (Dane DeHaan). Billy wants to know what they're doing, but Sara has made it very clear to Rio that he shouldn't tell anyone what's happened.

Unbeknownst to everyone, they have also been joined by some lawmen. Pat Garrett (Ethan Hawke) has a warrant and he'd just been elected sheriff of Lincoln County, New Mexico. He's only been on the job for two weeks, but he wants to capture Billy the Kid. Garrett doesn't have any trepidation about what he must do to accomplish this, so after a gunfight that has some crazy stuff in it, Billy is captured. Here's the thing though, Sara and Rio still need to get to Santa Fe. They're going to hitch a ride with Garrett, and obviously Billy wants to escape. Rio is just a kid, and he's torn here. He doesn't seem to understand what Billy has done, and it doesn't matter to him. He knows that Billy killed people, but so did he, and it's easy for people in that era to paint murdering as justified. I must reiterate that Billy is absolutely going to escape, there's no way he's going to be held in a jail cell. There is an issue though. Eventually Grant catches up to Rio and Sara, which leads to Rio having to make a decision. Would he rather enlist Billy or Garrett's help? This is an important decision, one which could form the rest of Rio's life.

This isn't a great film in part because the story is convoluted and the obvious decision on Rio's part is very predictable, but I did think that D'Onofrio did a good job casting things. It's nice seeing Chris Pratt have a role with some meat to it, where he acts like an unrepentant piece of shit. I thought I would have a hard time buying him in this part, but that wasn't the case at all. Some of the things that he said, for a minute I thought they had to be dubbed over due to his own beliefs. It appears they were not. I thought Ethan Hawke was Ethan Hawke, there's nothing to be said about his performance and he's been in many Westerns. Dane DeHaan was a little surprising too as I wasn't expecting him to really bring anything to the table here. I also thought that guy was actually very young and he's already 33, so it's time for him to start putting in quality performances. If he doesn't, we know what happens to actors as they get older. I was also surprised by Vincent D'Onofrio's daughter, but again, this is one way to make a movie that it seems there would be no real justification for making.

The weakness in this film beyond the story being convoluted, is that the script isn't too great either. The Kid is a film that thrives on atmosphere more than anything else, of knowledge of some of the characters, and on the fact that there simply aren't very many Westerns anymore. These things all combined make for a decent film, but I'm still surprised by the lack of character development (Rio) in a film directed by one of our greatest character actors. I must also admit that I haven't seen any of the other movies about Billy the Kid. If I had, maybe I'd feel differently and dislike this, but this also wasn't truly a film about Billy the Kid. It's about the moral choice between being truly bad or not so good yet halfway decent. It's a choice many people had to make in the West, and the film examines that purely if only on a superficial level. Again, The Kid was decent, there were good performances, but there needed to be a better script.

6/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Arctic
2.   High Flying Bird
3.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
4.   Captain Marvel
5.   Paddleton
6.   Cold Pursuit
7.   Happy Death Day 2U
8.   Greta
9.   Fighting with My Family
10.   Velvet Buzzsaw
11.   Alita: Battle Angel
12.   The Kid
13.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
14.   The Upside
15.   Escape Room
16.   What Men Want
17.   Miss Bala
18.   Glass
19.   The Prodigy
20.   Polar
21.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Baby Shoes

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #103 on: March 10, 2019, 04:28:21 PM »
Very disappointed that had nothing to do with the Bruce Willis movie of the same name.  They shouldn’t be reusing the names of classics.
[img width=800

Quote
Fan: WHY CAN REY BEAT BIG GUYS BUT NOT KIDMAN
Kevin Nash: Kidman wears a wife beater

Offline Joyful & Soyful

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #104 on: March 10, 2019, 05:19:29 PM »
Very disappointed that had nothing to do with the Bruce Willis movie of the same name.  They shouldn’t be reusing the names of classics.

Spencer Breslin was available for a role in this movie if they wanted to pay tribute.

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #105 on: March 10, 2019, 06:27:50 PM »
Hindi for half the film, subtitles



Lion (2016), directed by Garth Davis

Things have turned out so that I have numerous Best Picture nominees from the last few years to watch this month, and I had not yet made a dent in that list. I thought I should start off with the one that there was somewhat of a campaign against, so it was time to finally watch Lion. I also haven't watched a real feel good movie for some time, a lot of I've watched lately has been somewhat devastating. That is also somewhat the case with Lion, but doesn't last throughout the film. I must admit that I also felt a little dirty when I saw that Weinstein Company logo come on the screen when this began. That's something which really needs to be removed from these films, I don't care that his company made them, just get rid of it. It's a bad reminder. The story in Lion seems to ridiculous to be real, but it is real even though there's been some heavy detail editing in order to bring the story to screen. I am sure nobody wanted to make a film featuring Saroo eating out of a garbage can and going through severe struggle on a daily basis. Now, before I get into the meat of the film, and even though I thought this was a very good film, I must address the other elephant in the room. There is absolutely no way Lion should have been nominated for Best Picture. That was the reason I decided to watch this before the rest, because I was aware that was probably the case. I should have made a list for 2016, but it's way too late for that now. I'm not certain this would be in my top 25 and I'm still not done.

Lion is a tale of two stories about the same person, both of which are radically different stories with different casts. I will try not to spoil either one too much. Set in 1986, Saroo (Sunny Pawar) is a five year old who lives with his brother Guddu (Abishek Bharate), mom (Priyanka Bose), and much younger sister in Khandwa, India. Guddu and Saroo both get up to no good during the day, because that's what life in a third world country really is. They steal coal from freight trains so they can trade it for milk and food, this is not a good life at all. One day, Saroo insists on accompanying Guddu to the train station for a job that takes place at night, but Saroo is too tired to continue once they arrive. Guddu does not return, so Saroo gets on a train thinking that Guddu is there. Five year olds would do that. Saroo subsequently falls asleep, wakes up on it, and is trapped on the train for many days. Saroo then arrives in Kolkata, 1600 km away from his home, unable to speak Bengali. This sounds like the worst thing that could happen to a child. I will skip over some of the details to bring up that Saroo is entirely unable to find his family, nor is anyone able to find his family for him, and this leads to Saroo being sent to Australia to be adopted.

Upon arriving in Australia, Tasmania to be specific, Saroo meets his adoptive parents, John (David Wenham) and Sue (Nicole Kidman). We then flash forward 25 years, to Saroo (Dev Patel) as an adult, with his adoptive brother Mantosh (Divian Ladwa) having had major psychological problems after his adoption many years before. Saroo is moving to Melbourne to study hotel management, but Mantosh is absent at the going away dinner. Mantosh's problems have also given Sue health problems over the years, she is very worried about him. Upon arriving in Melbourne, Saroo starts a relationship with Lucy (Rooney Mara), a fellow student at his school. They are invited to a dinner at their Indian friend's house, which leads to a triggering emotion. After Saroo is clearly unable to eat with his hands and not used to the cuisine, he sees jalebi in their kitchen, a delicacy from his childhood in India. This brings back a flood of memories, which he tells his friends about. Their suggestion is to try this new thing people may be aware of, called Google Earth. See, Saroo had a tenuous grasp on Hindi when he was 5, no ability to read, didn't know where he came from in the first place, but he knew which train station he wound up in once he arrived in Kolkata. From there, he could find out where he came from, but what about the things he doesn't know, what he doesn't remember?

I tried hard not to reveal too much about either part of the film, but the stories are very different. They're different to the point where one is clearly much better than the other as well, and it doesn't take a genius to realize which one of those two stories it is. The first, with newcomer actors, and faces I'm not familiar with, in a foreign language, focusing on a kid getting separated from his family...nothing is really going to match that part of the film. Danny Boyle was able to weave three narratives together in Slumdog Millionaire, but there's nothing woven in here, instead they are entirely separated from each other, which leads to a natural comparison. Not everyone has the skill Danny Boyle has though. The films are also very similar and not just because they're about India and feature Dev Patel. I don't think everyone's seen Slumdog Millionaire, but the main character's mother is killed in a pogrom, which leads to the child being abandoned. So those are similarities, and I think the fact is that those stories of child abandonment do often feel very hard hitting. It seems that only good filmmakers have the balls to take those on. I would say that both aspects of the two films are equal, but Lion fails in that the story of Saroo attempting to find his family just doesn't match up.

I thought the performances in the film were strong, particularly that of Dev Patel, but back to the point of Saroo attempting his family, there are scenes there that aren't so good. I dare say the reunion scene with Saroo and his mother doesn't feel authentic. I'm sure a lot of people cried over it, but that was how I saw things. I thought it was more interesting when Saroo was trying to find himself during the process of these Google Earth searches. I don't think I'm a negative twat or anything like that, but I think a lot of people feel the same about the two stories feeling disjointed. Nicole Kidman's performance was similarly strong, I think a lot of people don't understand what it's like to be an adoptive mother. Even when the kids are horrible, a lot of adoptive mothers still feel the same ties as a biological mother. They chose to have the child after all, for most normal thinking people that is how it is. They are tied to the child for life. Even though the second half of the film isn't fantastic, her performance is. I also thought that there would have to be something wrong with you if you didn't feel anything during the first half of Lion, this is exactly what I watch films to see. The emotion derived from such stories is what it's all about.

Technically, I thought this was excellent, featuring great cinematography and a very strong score. The pictures of India are simultaneously beautiful and haunting, it's a country that we all know should be something more, but haunted by its past. Sometimes the things we see in these kinds of films bother me very deeply, this is no exception. This feeling, like it or not, also does make the second half of a disjointed story difficult to pay attention to. There's a large gap between great and good here, it's a tale of two halves. The finale, as already alluded to, not only didn't feel authentic but felt like hokum. I already said this shouldn't have been nominated for Best Picture and that's true, but I think the finale is also the reason it was nominated for Best Picture. Just look at how Green Book won this year. Awards voters love that stuff, bottom line. Still, the things that open the story, even though this doesn't go to the depths that Slumdog Millionaire does in showing how bad life is for impoverished children, those moments are very heavy and I think the film should have been more focused on them. The journey is a greater story than that of someone who learns something and feels like they no longer belong, in my opinion.

7.5/10


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #106 on: March 11, 2019, 06:27:20 PM »
Danish and German, subtitles



Land of Mine (2016), directed by Martin Zandvliet

As I've said before, I need to watch one foreign film a month. Land of Mine makes two, and I have another that makes three. Some claim that this is a film that has gross historical inaccuracy in that supposedly Danish officers did not command German soldiers to remove landmines in the way it is done so in this film. A lot of Danish historians were angry about this because German sergeants led the work of clearing these land mines, but I must be honest, I do not really see the difference. Anyway, now you know what this is about. Land of Mine was submitted to the Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film at the 2017 Oscars, and it was nominated for the award as well. The film ultimately lost out to The Salesman, and although by no means will I ever watch all these submissions, there are some I do very much want to watch. Land of Mine is not quite as strong an offering as The Salesman, but it's pretty good anyway. I'll stay out of the part related to whether or not these kinds of things happened exactly as stated, I just don't know. What I will say is that the director made this film to point out that there were mistakes made in the past by all countries, and he makes a good point. I also believe the same as him that we have not learned from these things. Another thing I would like to say before I started is that I'm glad Sony Pictures Classics picks up films like this. I'd never watch it otherwise.

After Denmark was liberated from German occupation in May 1945, the Wehrmacht was to evacuate the country. They were defeated. The film begins with a Danish sergeant, Carl Leopold Rasmussen (Ronald Moller), coming across a German POW who he believes looks at him funny. Not good for that POW. He punches that guy in the face over and over, and when another German asks him to stop, that guy gets messed up too. Afterwards, a group of young Germans are handed over to the Danish army and trained in the art of defusing land mines, not something that anyone wants to do. Danish Captain Jensen (Mikkel Boe Folsgaard) is responsible for training these kids, and he decides to do it the very harsh way. He smacks them on the hands with a stick when he thinks they'd kill themselves, this is a harsh training. Once, when they're defusing live land mines, they are sent into a room. Jensen believes many of them will kill themselves, but in fact it's the one he least expects that blows himself up. I should mention in this paragraph that the reason Germans were removing these land mines was because they were placed on the west coast of Denmark, facing the North Sea. It was believed that there could be a British invasion, so it was decided to make sure. Thousands of land mines were placed on the beaches, and nobody wanted good Danish boys to remove them. So, German slave labor.

In case you didn't understand the point, the Danish really fucking hate the Germans. We learn after the explosion scene that Rasmussen is in fact going to be in charge of these land mine removals. The neighboring farm hates Germans, but nowhere near as much as him. These kids are told that nobody will feel sorry for them, certainly not Rasmussen. Some of them become prominent enough to recognize by face, and all of them are stripped of rank. Sebastian Schumann (Louis Hofmann) effectively becomes their leader, and he's the only one that Rasmussen seems to want to talk to at the start of this work. Helmut (Joel Basman) was seemingly the highest ranking of these individuals, but that doesn't matter anymore. I'm also just guessing. Ludvig (Oskar Bokelmann) seems to be the oldest, and some of the others are practically children. Ernst (Emil Belton) and Werner (Oskar Belton) are twins, they probably haven't even shaved yet. Sebastian tries to discuss plans for when they finish their work, but Helmut doesn't want to hear any of that shit because he thinks they'll die. There are a few major issues as it relates to this work. The POWs are not given food because there isn't enough to go around, so they must starve. The most major issue though, is that the work is very dangerous. Wilhelm (Leon Seidel) is starving like the rest, to the point of vomiting repeatedly while out in the field. One of the times he does, his arms are blown off. This will not be the only time someone explodes, but time will tell if Rasmussen can keep his mettle in a country that is very fervently anti-German. His superiors even more than him.

Land of Mine is effective in that it doesn't tell us what these young men did before defusing the land mines, so we don't know what they did in Denmark prior to their capture. This is the wise choice, there is no reason to automatically feel sorry for them or to prejudge them based on actions that took place in war. War is bad. You could conversely say that their participation in war is bad enough and that's your right. The fact remains that some of the people shown here probably barely grew hair on their balls. This is not a true story based on someone's recollection of matters, but a dramatization of what happened on the west coast of Denmark. Half of the POWs who performed this task died, it was extremely dangerous work. I don't think I need to describe it, but if you want to know, just check out the film. The point is that war is fucking bad, and the act of dropping those land mines is going to have victims regardless of whether or not there's an invading force. I don't believe in war in general, but these are tools that should be banned. The Ottawa treaty has not done so becasue countries like ours do not participate.

Land of Mine itself, well, it's almost a great film. There are limitations with the story, but the tense moments here are very tense. Given the framing of these German soldiers, it is hard not to feel something when they're going to defuse these mines. One of the film's weaknesses is that some of the German POWs are difficult to differentiate from one another and simply blend in with the pack. Nothing here feels like an attempt to mine (no pun intended, I swear) for sympathy, the events feel authentic and this story is told very well. The ending is also very goddamn effective, and for that matter so is the rest. The characters are naturally sympathetic though. Rasmussen's anger is borne from things that happened during the war, the POWs are kids who were effectively drafted in at the end of the war. It is also easy to understand why Rasmussen wouldn't give a shit about them. Land of Mine is nicely short, it tells its story in a rather quick manner, towards the end I'd lost track of time and was surprised the film was concluding. That rarely happens with me. Some of the explosions are also very gory, this is not a film for the faint hearted. Neither is war. I think I shouldn't judge whether or not this is a film that merited Oscar nomination, because I'm not going to ever get to that point of watching all its competition, but this is a very strong, raw film. What I would say is that I can see why this got picked up for distribution in this country, and that any film which makes me audibly gasp "NO", those are the films worth watching.

8/10


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #107 on: March 12, 2019, 06:15:36 PM »


Life (2017), directed by Daniel Espinosa

When watching a film like 2017's Life, I have the grand total of one hope heading into it. It's that the derivative nature of such a film is kept to a minimum, replaced with some element of originality or something that derives material from lesser known works. That's something Life does not do, sad to say. When this film was released, I was thinking about how it's impossible for a film with these actors to deserve such mixed reviews, but a lot of time has passed since then. I now know exactly how that happens. When a film does have mixed reviews, oftentimes some people thought it was really good or really bad. In this case, the reviews are similar to my thoughts. This is a very average film. The question I was pondering at the end of Life was which side of average I thought the film landed on. A film so similar to Alien needs to do a lot of work to land above that positive side of average, but I thought this was merely alright. These kinds of films rely entirely on the characters being stupid as fuck, but I would like to know about one of these stories where they weren't. I'm sure one exists somewhere, I must find it, but in any case I thought Life was a film that could have been better, but featured some strong visual effects and a nice ending.

Set sometime in the future, an unmanned space probe returns from Mars to Earth orbit with samples of soil that potential contain evidence of life on Mars. This probe has run into space debris at some point, which leads to it very slightly going off course. In one neat scene, we're shown the crew on the International Space Station capturing the probe with a robotic arm. The crew itself consists of the commander, Ekaterina Golovkina (Olga Dihovichnaya); the exobiologist responsible for dealing with the Martian life form, Dr. Hugh Derry (Ariyon Bakare); systems engineer, Sho Murakami (Hiroyuki Sanada); the engineer and repairman responsible for capturing the space probe returning from Mars, Rory Adams (Ryan Reynolds); the quarantine officer, Dr. Miranda North (Rebecca Ferguson); and lastly the medical officer, Dr. David Jordan (Jake Gyllenhaal). Among this group, two are American, two are British, one is Japanese, and one is Russian. They all get along quite well. Dr. Hugh is paralyzed from the waist down, but this is not relevant in space. He takes a cell from the sample that came from Mars, and learns that it very quickly grows into a multicellular organism. On a video conference with Earth, a school is chosen to name this thing, and the name of Calvin is chosen.

Calvin is a strange creature, and this is an experiment, nobody knows how the organism will react to anything. One day, there's an accident in the lab that leads to Calvin becoming dormant, not moving at all. Everyone onboard is displeased by this, Hugh of course being bothered the most, but eventually everyone gets the heart to push on. They have no idea what the accident will have done to Calvin. It turns out that Calvin is now very hostile. Hugh attempts to revive the creature with electric shocks, but it attacks Hugh and crushes his right hands into bits. Calvin is also much more intelligent than it would seem. Hugh had placed the sharp electric shock tool in the enclosure, this was not a good idea. Calvin subsequently stabs through the gloves and is able to escape his glass cage, which leads to the creature also devouring a lab rat. This event leads to Calvin growing massively in size, eventually resembling an octopod or something similar. Rory decides that he needs to get into the lab, even though that breaks quarantine. If he doesn't, this thing will kill Hugh. He does not expect that David will lock him in the lab, but of course he will. They can't break quarantine. I will not spoil what happens specifically, but during this lab encounter, someone fucking dies. Badly. And Calvin gets out, growing in size by the minute, devouring any liquid it can.

This is, of course, very similar to Alien. You just need to watch Life to realize that, and once I did, which was about thirty minutes into the film, that was pretty much that. At that point, I was hoping for big effects shots and crazy deaths, and that's what I got. Make no mistake, this film does fail to make any grand statement of any sort. Even though there's an obvious case of "this is what could happen if we found sentient life," nothing is really made of this at all. There are also some weird scenes at the beginning of the events that don't serve any purpose. Yes, Jake Gyllenhaal's character prefers being in space to being on the planet, but I don't think that really matters. I did think some of these scenes were effective though. The kills all work. The one with people on Earth rushing to give this crazy creature a name, that was perfect. Nobody even know what it was or what it could do, but we must relate to it somehow and the way to do so is by having children name it. The spacewalking is always nice. Unfortunately, the plot here just does not have any depth whatsoever. You probably know this instantly, it doesn't take a genius to figure that out. The way that Hugh is able to activate a hibernating piece of Martian life after discovering it is laughable. That seems like something which would take an extremely long time.

The film is unrealistic, but I think I've already said all I need to stay about that. I thought Life did have a pretty good score, it was one of the things keeping me fully engaged in the events. The cinematography and visual effects are very good, even though they aren't as good as in Gravity. The natural similarity between those films is that they feature scenes where elements of space stations are torn to pieces. Gravity is a much better technical achievement though, the effects are better and although the story is limited, it is also better. Even having an alien with tentacles killing people is not going to make Life a much better film, and in the end I'm left to think about everything that it wasn't. Being derivative is a huge sin, but I do think this is somewhat redeemed by how good the ending is. Ultimately, this is just a workmanlike film. I don't want to give it a bad score because in my book, anything under a 6/60 would be a failing grade. This isn't a bad film, it's just too similar to ones that I've already seen, and there are so many more like it. I also have my own baseline film for the margin something like this would have to clear. It did. There are too many good scenes for me to give Life a failing grade.

6/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Logan
4.   Wonder Woman
5.   The Big Sick
6.   Thor: Ragnarok
7.   Logan Lucky
8.   The Beguiled
9.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
10.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
11.   The Lost City of Z
12.   First They Killed My Father
13.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
14.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
15.   It
16.   Battle of the Sexes
17.   Okja
18.   Kong: Skull Island
19.   It Comes at Night
20.   Split
21.   1922
22.   Personal Shopper
23.   Chuck
24.   Atomic Blonde
25.   Wheelman
26.   The Lego Batman Movie
27.   Megan Leavey
28.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
29.   American Made
30.   Beauty and the Beast
31.   Imperial Dreams
32.   Murder on the Orient Express
33.   The Zookeeper's Wife
34.   Free Fire
35.   Win It All
36.   The Wall
37.   Life
38.   Breathe
39.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
40.   Alone in Berlin
41.   A United Kingdom
42.   Trespass Against Us
43.   The Mountain Between Us
44.   War Machine
45.   Happy Death Day
46.   Justice League
47.   To the Bone
48.   Wakefield
49.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
50.   Sand Castle
51.   CHiPs
52.   Death Note
53.   The Belko Experiment
54.   The Great Wall
55.   Fist Fight
56.   Wilson
57.   Queen of the Desert
58.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #108 on: March 14, 2019, 06:41:37 AM »


Triple Frontier (2019), directed by J.C. Chandor

I wonder how it's possible for a film to be in production hell for ten years. For ten years this was in pre-production, with so many stars attached at one point, back when Kathryn Bigelow was tabbed to direct. Even after J.C. Chandor took over, the same thing was the case. Eventually Netflix acquired the film and it was made, but talk about a troubled production. Oddly enough, I can see why this was a troubled production yet I also see some value in this film. Very rarely do studios make movies like Triple Frontier these days. Ten years ago, there were a lot more, and this would have had no real impact at all. Now, maybe it does. It's released on Netflix, budget probably around $75-125 million, and I know there's no real financial return but I do think a lot of people will watch this. Whether or not it's a lot depends on many things, this doesn't have the meme potential of Bird Box or the quality of Roma, but this is Netflix making a traditional Hollywood blockbuster type of movie. What I thought this was also like, was a worse Three Kings set in South America. That isn't to say it's bad, but a lot of the more subtle commentary in the film needs to be spelled out much more clearly. Because it isn't, what we have here is a film that could have been much better, but it wasn't bad regardless of those mistakes. I still have no idea why anyone would give a crew this much money to go out and shoot in the Andes Mountains. There's a reason that doesn't happen!

Triple Frontier is a very ambitious film, as already alluded to, and it's very difficult for me to figure out how I'm going to review such a production. The film starts in Colombia, with Santiago "Pope" Garcia (Oscar Isaac) working for private military trying to stop drug crime. Said private military is also affiliated with the US government, and while there, Pope has encountered an informant named Yovanna (Adria Arjona) who wants help smuggling her and her brother out of the country. They work for a drug lord called Lorea, and she tells Pope that Lorea lives out in the jungle in a house which contains at least $75,000,000. Sounds good, right? Pope wants to get it, and he could bring in the CIA to help, but he has ulterior motives. It's also not entirely up to him because he can't retrieve this money on his own. It's time to do some recruiting. Of course, Pope was in the military at some point before this, which means that he heads off to America to find some new guys. Did I mention that there was a big shootout before this? I should have.

Over in America, his first stop is with current military motivational speaker William "Ironhead" Miller (Charlie Hunnam). Of course he's in, he doesn't have that much money. His brother Ben (Garret Hedlund) is a club fighter, so of course he's in too. Again, all these guys are ex-military. Francisco "Catfish" Morales (Pedro Pascal) is going to serve as their pilot, and lastly, there's Tom "Redfly" Davis (Ben Affleck). Redfly is perhaps the most screwed of them all, he's divorced and working as a realtor selling very shitty condos, there's no life for him back home in Florida. Redfly's job on the mission is to do reconnaisance, he's their leader and he does not want to engage in any killing. The thing is, there's a hell of a lot of money involved. He just can't resist. Upon arriving in the jungle, they see that this is going to be more difficult than imagined in the first place. There are a lot of guards, and there are children. Here is their mission. They do not want to kill the kids or even want them to be there. What they are doing is illegal and they aren't getting bailed out at any point. If they get shot, they will have to mend it themselves. Nobody's coming to help them, but they do have some assets. They need to retrieve money from the house, the $75,000,000 they've planned for, take it over the Andes Mountains on a helicopter, and meet a boat in the ocean so they can get home. The thing is, greed is going to kick in at this level, and if there's more than they can carry, you know how men are. They're going to carry it anyway.

The commentary about greed is too subtle, but it is mentioned enough that it was coming to mind during the closing events of the film. I do have complaints though. Can films stop using nicknames for military guys? This has gotten ridiculous a long time ago, it's really bad now. I don't want to hear any of that shit in a movie anymore, it sucks. The script is also very thin, I thought. Triple Frontier isn't short on moments or atmosphere though. There are numerous things I didn't see coming as the film went on, I was left with the thought that this was at the least quite original. Triple Frontier also is filmed in the Andes, or at least it seems that way, but the mountainous atmospheres in this film are in any case very unique to a film. I just don't see things like this enough. There are also chase scenes through jungles filmed on a helicopter, and I don't know where they filmed that, but this kind of thing is again not too common. As I've said before, Netflix is too willing to spend money on things that other studios won't. It's nice of them as I'm not used to this, but I also thought Triple Frontier was something that belonged in a theater. The scenes were grandiose like that, and it felt weird seeing an excellently filmed helicopter crash released for the first time on a streaming service. That just doesn't make sense and I don't see how a film like this one can make money for Netflix.

I think I've addressed almost everything, but I should point out that even though I dislike Ben Affleck, he was very well cast here. When you watch this you'll see what I mean. That is, if you watch this. I am surprised J.C. Chandor would do this unless he was paid a hell of a lot of money, it isn't similar at all to the other films that he's done. A Most Violent Year could really not be more different than this is, and I don't understand the tonal shift. A Most Violent Year is a very slow burner, Triple Frontier has big moments happen quite frequently. I thought it became amusing at some point, but the way these heists never pan out the way someone wants them to, and the way people think they can get away with doing stupid shit, that's where this film really succeeds. Everyone had their own goals for this heist, but more than anything else, they wanted to get away with it no matter what. This kind of unbridled hubris makes a film worth watching, and I also don't think I've seen this much fake movie money ever before in my life. Unfortunately some of the characters are far too similar to one another, with Affleck and Isaac's being the only two who really stand out.

6.5/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Arctic
2.   High Flying Bird
3.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
4.   Captain Marvel
5.   Paddleton
6.   Cold Pursuit
7.   Happy Death Day 2U
8.   Greta
9.   Triple Frontier
10.   Fighting with My Family
11.   Velvet Buzzsaw
12.   Alita: Battle Angel
13.   The Kid
14.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
15.   The Upside
16.   Escape Room
17.   What Men Want
18.   Miss Bala
19.   Glass
20.   The Prodigy
21.   Polar
22.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #109 on: March 14, 2019, 12:21:38 PM »


Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral (2019), directed by Tyler Perry

Is this really going to be the end for Madea? I have my doubts, but I must admit that I don't really want the character to go away. Everyone winds up becoming attached to a horrible film or television character at some point, but Tyler Perry deserves the right to move on. That being said, I genuinely don't know why he would. This character requires very little effort, the direction of these movies also seemingly requires no effort, but I can imagine that it's still difficult to find a cast and go put on all that makeup and prosthetics every day. Admittedly, there is also no more mileage in the real MCU, with every story that could possibly have been told being long exhausted. These movies really are what they are, but I haven't reviewed one of them yet. I have seen some, but that was before I started these reviews. Is it wrong to feel guilty for laughing at some of this? Spike Lee's comments really stuck with me for a while, he said some things that were very harshly against this movie, but did I have the shame to stay out of the theater? The answer is no. Come on, do I really have shame? The only reason I haven't seen certain movies is because I don't always have time.

I don't even know how to describe a movie like this one, so maybe I won't. Instead I'll answer some questions people may have. David Otunga does not beat anyone up. Madea does not die. There is no actual bad guy in this but rather there is a confluence of events that leads to someone dying of a heart attack. Secrets are kept. Tyler Perry plays multiple characters again, including one who doesn't wear makeup. I do not know the backstory of this character in its entirety, but I'm sure there's some things that I'm missing. I laughed some, I thought some of this wasn't all that funny at all. A few of Tyler Perry's characters really whiffed for me, and the two women accompanying Madea are terrible. I have absolutely nothing good to say about either of them.

What I wanted to say about this movie, was that I think Tyler Perry is a really, truly bad director. I've liked him in other parts, but this film lacks imagination. All of these are directed in very similar ways, they're on budgets that aren't all that large, and they use actors who haven't really done anything before. I must admit I didn't recognize much of anyone in the film, but I do see that the budget for Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral was up compared to other prior entries. I also saw this was filmed back in 2017, I'm not sure why it wouldn't be released until now. Unfortunately, one of Tyler Perry's new characters, a Vietnam War vet named Heathrow, was really not funny even compared to the other characters I didn't like. Joe (also Tyler Perry), on the other hand, he pretty much saved the movie. I laughed hardest at the things he was saying, but make no mistake, you should feel bad for laughing hard at these things. I really do feel bad too.

Of course, the nature of these movies is that they will never have good stories, everyone knows that by now. That's why most people hate them, and Tyler Perry has no self-filter to prevent him from putting bad jokes in the movie. He leaves everything in even if it isn't funny, and I give some credit for that level of ridiculous hubris. Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral is a film packed with absurd melodrama, with people who have to take their clothes off in a PG-13 way, with actors having to react to the things Madea is saying or pretend that she isn't saying them at all, and you know, that's really what I needed today. I've had a pretty shitty week, I just wanted to laugh, and I did. I'm sorry that I couldn't properly describe what this was, but I couldn't figure out an angle to take with this story.

4/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Arctic
2.   High Flying Bird
3.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
4.   Captain Marvel
5.   Paddleton
6.   Cold Pursuit
7.   Happy Death Day 2U
8.   Greta
9.   Triple Frontier
10.   Fighting with My Family
11.   Velvet Buzzsaw
12.   Alita: Battle Angel
13.   The Kid
14.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
15.   The Upside
16.   Escape Room
17.   What Men Want
18.   Miss Bala
19.   Glass
20.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
21.   The Prodigy
22.   Polar
23.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #110 on: March 14, 2019, 05:52:12 PM »


City of Ghosts (2017), directed by Matthew Heineman

After 2018's A Private War, I felt the need to understand why the director would want to make a movie about Marie Colvin so badly. It's also not just that as the reason I watched City of Ghosts, I needed to watch a documentary this month and inch forward with things I've seen from 2017. The question of why he would make a movie about Marie Colvin was answered, it was something we needed. I know that by every real standard, A Private War bombed very hard at the box office, but it was one of the best films from 2018. It ranks high on my list and nothing will really change that, but the subject matter is too heavy for a general audience. That's also the case with City of Ghosts, a documentary which ranks among the best I've seen. That's high praise, but bear in mind I haven't seen all that many. I think City of Ghosts is a comprehensive documentary about reporting in Syria and what happens when people have to flee, the kind which we really needed two years ago when this was released. The situation on the ground has changed since then. Assad has taken back control, ISIS is nearly defeated, but as City of Ghosts points out, ISIS is merely an idea. The group may die but the idea will not, this is something that is going to continue on for some time. What I also thought as this documentary was coming to a conclusion was that I was really glad to have been born here, it is things such as this that make me appreciate my life a lot more.

City of Ghosts is about Raqqa, and specifically the activist group, Raqqa Is Being Slaughtered Silently. The group was founded with the intention of publicizing atrocities committed by ISIS in Raqqa, after ISIS had attempted to cover some of these things up. Inevitably ISIS started creating their own videos, but there are many things those videos do not talk about. RBSS was started to ensure that the West is aware of these things. RBSS was founded by 17 Syrians, and when ISIS moved into Raqqa, the group started secretly posting information about ISIS. According to an RBSS member, they posted a lot of videos of crucifixions and executions, which is what really got things moving along. ISIS did not like this, and they started a campaign to assassinate the individuals who were feeding RBSS their information, as well as kill RBSS members who lived outside of the country. It turns out that ISIS was moderately successful in killing some members, doing so in broad daylight over in Turkey. However, the organization will push on, and nothing will stop them, not even threat of death or in some cases actual death. There are two brothers here who saw a video of their father and older brother being executed by ISIS as a consequence of their reporting on these atrocities. As far as a documentary carrying weight goes, I don't even know what to say about that. That's so sad.

Of course, a documentary featuring so much ISIS related material is going to have some real gory things in it, so you're well warned of that should you choose to turn this on after reading my review. I thought that Matthew Heineman was very adept in ensuring none of these things felt like they were being drawn out for shock effect, but more than that, it's the story of the group that really wins out. Whether they go from Raqqa to Turkey, to Germany, to New York City, back to Germany, you really feel their plight. There's an intelligent inclusion of an anti-refugee rally in Berlin, so if you think the Germans really banned Nazi shit, you can just think again with that. That trope should be dead to anyone if they've seen this. I think City of Ghosts is so incredibly effective in telling its story, and if you haven't seen any of those Islamic State propaganda films, they are in this. I found them to be upsetting and I know that was the purpose, sometimes it hits too hard, but again, that's the point. There are enough talking points where I could go through this for a very, very long time, but I think I should describe the film instead of doing that. I honestly don't know why anyone here wouldn't watch this, I know some of you care about this subject.

I thought it was important to watch this film after what happened in Christchurch today. I can't really explain my logic, but I thought there was a parallel between what ISIS did to people and what shooters do when they randomly walk into a place of worship and kill a lot of people. What films like this do, for me anyway, is paint the correct picture in showing that people are all the same. Some have been brainwashed, yes, that is true, but at a base human level, we are all the same. I do not understand why things have to be this way, and truly I'll never understand, but I have immense appreciation for those who break stories about conflict zones. It's an unbelievably difficult and ultimately underappreciated job, but the impact of this job on our subjects is shown at multiple times in a movie. There is nothing more a documentary can give than to show you a clip of a son watching an ISIS propaganda film where his father is shot in the head. For what it's worth, this wasn't grief exploitation, in fact the son said that he watched this all the time for motivation and because he couldn't not watch it. That's the kind of thing I can't really understand, something foreign to me, and I have great appreciation for people who tell these stories knowing that something like this could happen to them. The fact is that we need those stories, so I perfectly understand now why Matthew Heineman would go on to direct A Private War.

9/10


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #111 on: March 16, 2019, 05:27:22 AM »


Fences (2016), directed by Denzel Washington

So, adaptations of plays. I'm not a play person and I have never went to see one, much less one that was made for Broadway as Fences. It seems that people have what I'd consider to be a surprisingly mixed reaction to this story. It seems that I'm on the extreme end of positivity, but the Academy did nominate Fences for Best Picture, so I'm going to stick with what I think. Fences is obviously an adaptation of a play, directed by one of the best actors ever, also featuring that same actor putting on arguably the best performance of his career. If you care about this sort of thing, yes, he has had practice and time to refine his performance in this role, but I don't think that really matters. What transfers over to the screen is spectacular, even though there's a third act that really tapers off. I haven't watched a Denzel Washington film in a while, I thought this was the right time to do so. Once I watch Silence, I believe that's everything most people thought should be nominated for Best Picture. If that isn't, then I have more work to go, but I'm going to move on to 2017 in full. I don't think there's anything wrong with that, but anyway, I just wanted to explain myself. In any case, I can think of only a few films from 2016 that I liked more than this one, Moonlight chiefly among them. This was a great cast doing their thing.

Fences is set in 1950s Pittsburgh, where Troy Maxson (Denzel Washington) lives with his wife Rose (Viola Davis) and their son Cory (Jovan Adepo), with Troy working as a trash collector riding on the back of a truck. Troy rides the truck with his best friend, Mr. Bono (Stephen McKinley Henderson), and they've apparently been friends for a very long time. You learn how and why they became friends at some point in the film, I will not reveal how. Troy has a younger brother, Gabriel (Mykelti Williamson), and Gabriel suffered a head injury during World War II that left him very mentally impaired. He received a $3,000 government payout, but he was unable to use it, and Troy used the payout to purchase a home for his family. Gabriel was living with him and instead decided to move out. Due to Gabriel's problems, in addition to Gabriel being black, this leads to him getting in trouble with the police. Troy is unable to keep Gabe at his house, and I'm not sure he wanted to anyway, so this situation is what it is. He wanted Gabe to keep his freedom, and that happened, but that cost Troy a lot of his money.

I'm not going to explain what the deal is exactly with Troy, it's better to not know and watch the film to find out. However, some of this needs to be mentioned. Troy was a baseball player in the Negro Leagues, he was never able to make it to Major League Baseball. He was too old by the point at which Jackie Robinson came along. Troy also claims to have faced the Grim Reaper in his youth, this allowed him to survive pnuemonia. The thing you have to understand about Troy is, he's a classic bullshitter. Troy also has a son from a previous relationship, his name is Lyons (Russell Hornsby), and he visits Troy every payday to borrow money from him. This makes Troy very upset because Troy believes a real man takes responsibility for himself and provides for his own family. There's another issue as well, this one with Cory, and Cory is trying to play college football. Troy's not okay with this, he believes that black people are only on these teams to get screwed over, and that Cory will not get a real chance. He also obviously does not want Cory to fail and will not allow him to see a recruiter that would allow him to play college football unless Cory completes some very specific tasks. The long and short of it is, he wants his two sons to be what he thinks a real man is, he wants to have things going on right at home, and he wants everything to be his way. You know how it works with control freaks like that? It's never always their way.

Denzel Washington's electric performance carries this film very far, but this is also an achievement in script writing. The two in combination with each other make for something great, but Fences is a film that repeatedly features actors stealing scenes and making the most of the work they're given. This isn't an achievement of cinematography or of set design or anything like that, this seemed to have been done in a very minimalist way. I thought the story was enthralling as a whole, but the third act simply wasn't as good as the rest. There's a reason for that and I don't want to say why, you'd have to watch the film. I could not more strongly recommend that you watch this film. There's lots of commentary on the time, but the story does an excellent job of wrapping everyone up into it. I was thinking about so many things when I went to write this review, but I'm left without an ability to actually paint a picture of the film to my liking. There are the usual classic scenes where Denzel Washington decides to go full bore into ranting at an invisible object, and these do seem a little out of place at times, but they're also scenes made for him to show the full capabilities of his acting prowess. I thought Viola Davis was nearly as good, but her role is more limited. Regardless of that, this is a film where these two effectively spend their entire time acting in and around one little house.

This is a great drama, even if it doesn't bring anything truly unique to the table. The monologues Denzel Washington gives as Troy, particularly the ones targeting his son, those are too good. Viola Davis has a few that are just as good, one of which made me actually clap like a fool. I watched Fences last night, but I still feel 12 hours later that the film is just as good as I thought once it ended, and that's also a big achievement. Many times I do not feel that way, but I write my reviews so quickly after viewing a film to ensure that I do not forget the events in it. Registering at 134 minutes before the credit, Fences is quite a long movie, but it's one with some good moral lessons. Troy Maxson is a picture of someone who had a bad father, so many people who had bad fathers turn out like this, particularly in that era when it was a more commonly held practice to treat your sons this way. Of course, if someone is familiar with the play, this could be a huge nothing to them and they may find nothing great about this at all. On the other hand, I find that cinema really lacks in telling these kinds of stories about black people, even to this day. This seems to be getting better and better, but it's something that always sticks in my mind. Hollywood has to get better than offering one or two strong films featuring black people in one given year. Even more than that, people need to watch movies that don't feature guns and ridiculous special effects. Good luck with that.

9/10


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #112 on: March 16, 2019, 12:39:39 PM »


Captive State (2019), directed by Rupert Wyatt

When I went to see The Predator way back in September, the best teaser, as well as the only one I hadn't seen before, was for Captive State. If you've seen said teaser, you know exactly what I mean. It looked somewhat like Cloverfield, and we saw a glimpse of alien ships in addition to John Goodman wearing a mask while strapped into something that looked like a chair. When this was being filmed, I also remember a lot of promotional material related to that. Of course, now I will mention that said promotional material disappeared entirely once the film got closer to releasing. That's usually not a good sign. In this case, I see why it disappeared, this is an impossible film to market. People don't care about original stories anymore, that's very clear, but even more than that, this is a film that I would consider to be somewhat lacking in action. This is a major problem considering what the story really is, but this is science-fiction and there's very little of that released these days. So, I was happy, but the longer this film went on, the more annoyed I became, this does not really land with the stories it is attempting to tell. There are others that are for whatever reason not included in this plot at all. Why someone would make a movie about an alien occupation of our planet and not show how they came to occupy it in the first place is a total mystery.

You should disregard the Wikipedia description because it spoils the film and in general it's complete nonsense. Captive State begins and stays in Chicago, with our eyes set on a computer screen describing some of the events that have happened since aliens took over Earth. What's most important though, is that we see what happened to some of the people involved. There's a family of four, with two boys in the back seat and a husband and wife in the front. They are talking about an insurgence, and it is clear that people are being cordoned into areas in Chicago that they are allowed to inhabit. Instead of doing that, the husband decides that he's going to turn around and go his own way, attempting to take a route out of the city or into a zone he isn't allowed to go into. This situation is chaos, but for him that won't last much longer. There are aliens, which can best be described as of the crawling kind. They can stand up too, and they had the ability to easily kill the parents. The children in the back seat, on the other hand, the aliens decide to let them leave. I wasn't able to figure out why because it doesn't make sense. I can admit that I don't know exactly what scene came after this one, but I know that we then see our antagonist, a police officer named William Mulligan (John Goodman), meeting with a prostitute (Vera Farmiga) and having sex with her (unseen) in a neighborhood called Pilsen.

The situation on the ground in Chicago is not great. The aliens have called themselves the Legislators, and the Legislators have created a zone in the middle of Chicago where only they and specific collaborators are allowed to travel. The two children have grown up, but Rafe (Jonathan Majors) has died as an insurgent while his brother Gabriel (Ashton Sanders) is still trying to make his way through life. Gabe is friends with Jurgis (Machine Gun Kelly), and together they are both hustlers. They both badly want to get the hell out of Chicago, where people are trapped and not allowed to leave. The aforementioned Mulligan takes part in what is now a heavy surveillance state, and apparently he's watching Gabe. Mulligan also believes very strongly that the insurgency is still going, and that the Legislators were not able to kill them all when they'd had a failed attack. The Legislators have taken over the world, every major city is now run by them, and so are the governments. People do not do anything without them knowing, and they've planted living bugs inside of people that track them. Rafe had joined the insurgency despite this, but he's supposed to be dead. Or is he? Captive State is a film that presents so many ideas I literally do not know how to keep track of them or how to explain them, but the prevailing one is that they're destroying the planet by stealing our resources at a very rapid rate. They also take prisoners and send them to work off planet, and there are talks that eventually they will take some people with them to leave Earth behind, destroyed as it is.

Did I make clear that I can't possibly explain the plot? This is totally ridiculous and presents so many ideas that I don't know how to explain them all in the context of the film. It's easier to do so outside of context. How about the idea that living outside of the city would be considered freedom? These people don't even know what's going on outside of the city because the aliens have completely destroyed the capacity for people to know. There are also ideas about what insurgency entails, the passing of information from one person to the next, and the commitment that goes into said insurgency. I really liked the presentation of that. I also liked the idea of aliens implanting live trackers onto humans. Yes, they would totally do that if they wanted to take over our planet, but now effects have finally come far enough for them to actually show it. The insurgency thing, that's something which frequently came to mind as an allegory for a fight against an oppressive government, but the film just doesn't have enough depth and weight to it. There are frequent sequences of scenes that are horribly edited, where we go from one character to the next, leaving me with the feel that there isn't a true main character. This is not good.

This is not good is a sentence that applies to the film as a whole, it isn't exciting enough even though there's good concepts, and there's a serious inconsistency with the quality of the editing from one part of the film to the next. When you don't get to see how aliens occupied the planet or how humans decided to start getting rid of them at the end, this just sucks a lot of enjoyment out of the movie. The ending is horrendous, they clearly didn't film enough to actually explain the conspiracy in depth, and because of that this left me with a sour taste as I was walking out of the theater. Some of the CGI is also quite bad, but I didn't actually notice this until the very end of the film. There are too many characters and I don't understand all of their situations, and this is a lesson that not all of the directors who write films should be allowed to make whatever they want without there being some kind of restrictive force. Due to budget restrictions, there's also not the ability to show these aliens often enough, and that's a really big problem. Oh well, they can't all fulfill my wishes. I would say though, that this would be a film I classify as a small failure. It is at the very least extremely interesting, and John Goodman is on screen a lot, so it can't really be that bad. I'm still left with thoughts of what it could have been.

5.5/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Arctic
2.   High Flying Bird
3.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
4.   Captain Marvel
5.   Paddleton
6.   Cold Pursuit
7.   Happy Death Day 2U
8.   Greta
9.   Triple Frontier
10.   Fighting with My Family
11.   Velvet Buzzsaw
12.   Alita: Battle Angel
13.   The Kid
14.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
15.   The Upside
16.   Captive State
17.   Escape Room
18.   What Men Want
19.   Miss Bala
20.   Glass
21.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
22.   The Prodigy
23.   Polar
24.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #113 on: March 16, 2019, 05:12:43 PM »


Sleight (2017), directed by J.D. Dillard

It's back to the first time feature film well once again, something that is becoming a staple in these reviews. First time films have fresh ideas and Sleight is no exception to that, and this featured a lot of things I wasn't quite expecting. However, at the same time, this does have a lot of the same things I've watched in other movies. Kid living in Los Angeles with parents who are gone, and he's left to take care of his younger sibling. I've seen this story a lot, but I watch a lot of material and this is merely a case of me becoming fatigued due to seeing it so much. With that in mind, I think this is an interesting concept, but we really needed more scenes of the lead character doing magic. Due to how short this film was, my review will also be short, and I must reiterate that this is a movie that needs more magic. Have I made that clear yet? There's some quality here, but ultimately I'm left thinking about the things this film could have had and didn't have. It's still an achievement though, you try making a film with $250,000. That shit is hard.

Bo (Jacob Latimore) is a young street magician who has been fucked over after his parents died, of course none of that is anyone's fault. Bad things happen to people. Bo has turned to selling drugs in order to keep a roof over his and his sister Tina's (Storm Reid) heads. He doesn't have a choice, there's no other way for him to make money and put food on the table. He does have a neighbor who helps him out, her name is Georgi (Sasheer Zamata), and without her, I'm not sure what this kid would be doing. In the day, Bo performs magic tricks, he is able to somehow control metal things and keep them floating in the air. He has done this because he has an electromagnet implanted in his arm, I don't understand how this happened or even if it's actually possible. There's some backstory to this, but it appears that he controls this device with his fingers and thumb, with the battery running to his thumb. Again, I don't know how this is possible. In the process of doing these magic tricks, he eventually meets Holly (Seychelle Gabriel), who becomes his girlfriend. Holly has her own problems, it appears that she is abused by one of her parents, whom she lives with.

At night, Bo does a lot of other, very illegal shit that I have already alluded to. He sells cocaine and ecstasy, and Angelo (Dule Hill) is his supplier. I don't know why Angelo became his supplier or how, there's not a lot of character depth as far as that goes. Unfortunately, at the time in which the events of this movie occur, someone new has came on the scene and started selling drugs in Bo's spot. Angelo isn't going to tolerate this, he wants Bo to find this guy. So, Bo uses his ability to do magic tricks to find out who the supplier is. Going to leave it at that. Angelo also has Bo do worse things than sell drugs, I will also not divulge what those are. Eventually, this leads to Bo doing something very dumb. He doesn't want to sell drugs anymore, in fact he wants to leave Los Angeles behind and take his sister with him. His idea is to cut a kilo of coke into two, this is not a wise decision. The possibility this gets back to Angelo is strong, and keep in mind that Bo is just a kid. He's incapable of doing anything should he get in trouble, and that thing in his arm is infected.

I think this is simply a solid film, and I'm appreciative of the effort to the point where I don't want to critique. This is a neat take on superhero stuff, with our lead character having the ability to do that and nobody knowing about the magnet inside of his arm. I don't know if this is realistic or not, I assume that it isn't and I don't understand how that could ever work. The conclusion of the film is nice though, and it's weird to see Dule Hill playing a bad guy and cursing up a storm. That's weird casting. The script and the ingenuity has kept the film from being merely ordinary, and there are some good ideas here. Realism is not something we always need, but I'm a bit shocked by the level of special effects considering this film was nearly budgetless. As I said, this would be short, but I think there's also some good commentary on what happens to people who lose their parents. Society does not account for when that happens to young people.

6/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Logan
4.   Wonder Woman
5.   The Big Sick
6.   Thor: Ragnarok
7.   Logan Lucky
8.   The Beguiled
9.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
10.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
11.   The Lost City of Z
12.   First They Killed My Father
13.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
14.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
15.   It
16.   Battle of the Sexes
17.   Okja
18.   Kong: Skull Island
19.   It Comes at Night
20.   Split
21.   1922
22.   Personal Shopper
23.   Chuck
24.   Atomic Blonde
25.   Wheelman
26.   The Lego Batman Movie
27.   Megan Leavey
28.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
29.   American Made
30.   Beauty and the Beast
31.   Imperial Dreams
32.   Murder on the Orient Express
33.   The Zookeeper's Wife
34.   Free Fire
35.   Win It All
36.   The Wall
37.   Life
38.   Breathe
39.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
40.   Sleight
41.   Alone in Berlin
42.   A United Kingdom
43.   Trespass Against Us
44.   The Mountain Between Us
45.   War Machine
46.   Happy Death Day
47.   Justice League
48.   To the Bone
49.   Wakefield
50.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
51.   Sand Castle
52.   CHiPs
53.   Death Note
54.   The Belko Experiment
55.   The Great Wall
56.   Fist Fight
57.   Wilson
58.   Queen of the Desert
59.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #114 on: March 17, 2019, 06:34:14 PM »


Silence (2016), directed by Martin Scorsese

Many times recently I have had very long films listed to watch, but it nearly always turns out that I don't have the time or willpower to actually go through with doing so. It turns out Silence is a big exception to that, but I always knew it was going to be. I simply could not go without ever watching Martin Scorsese's passion project, what kind of person would I be? This is an adaptation of a novel, and it has already been adapted before, but I'm not sure if the Japanese adaptation was any good. The novel must be really damn good or it wouldn't be adapted twice, that's the way I look at it. Martin Scorsese is seemingly obsessed with the idea of people struggling with their faith, and this has to be because he has done so himself. How wouldn't that be the case? Anyway, I have read that the budget was tight enough that many people were forced to work for scale, and I can see how that was. The locations in Silence are numerous, there's a large cast, a massive amount of extras, and there's amazing cinematography that required some incredible capabilities. I wish I'd seen this in theaters, but I'm not surprised that a film with this subject matter and length bombed at the box office. What really gets me is that this wasn't nominated for any Academy Awards. The fuck? This is so much more worthy of nominations than many different productions, I do not understand. I also realize that with this, I've watched nearly everything that got an Oscar nomination for the 2017 show in an important category. Wow! I should say that the foreign language and documentary categories are important, because they are, but there's just a few entries in both of those that I haven't seen. Still though. Wow!

Silence begins in similar fashion to many of Scorsese's works, with a scene establishing the following events. This one is a prologue where we see a Portuguese priest named Cristovao Ferreira (Liam Neeson) witnessing the torture and death of five missionaries in Japan. Ferreira is helpless to stop this, and Japanese authorities are eager to partake. A minor history lesson is needed, this was a response to the Shimabara Rebellion. Some local Japanese Catholics had decided to rebel against the shogunate, and it was decided by Japan to drive out Catholicism because they thought Europeans had spread the fires of rebellion. A few years later in Macau, an Italian priest named Valignano (Ciaran Hinds) has received word that Ferreira has committed apostasy over in Japan after being tortured himself. Ferreira had tutored two priests, Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Garupe (Adam Driver). The two Portuguese absolutely refuse to believe that this is true, they know their mentor would never have apostatized. These Jesuits believe they need to make their way to Japan and find news of him or find him, and Valignano agrees to their request. First, they need to find someone in Macau who is from Japan so they can do a moderate translation as the priests do not know the language, Their man is Kichijiro (Yosuke Kubozuka), a drunk who the priests cannot trust, but ultimately they are powerless to do anything else.

When Rodrigues and Garupe arrive in Japan, it is at a village called Tomogi. Christians are no longer allowed into Japan nor are people allowed to practice Christianity, with everyone living in fear of the Inquisitor (Issei Ogata). Kichijiro takes it upon himself to go find Christians in the village, and in the end he finds a group of them who subsequently lead the priests to a safe house up in the mountains. The priests are told to stay hidden during the day, but at night they come down and minister to the people in the village. The village leader is a man named Ichizo (Yoshi Oida), and Mokichi (Shinya Tsukamoto) is another who are very, deeply Christian. They tell the priests that they've needed a priest for so long, and eventually the Jesuits become a necessary part of the village. Persecution, however, has run rampant. It is pictured above. The villagers are not able to keep any relics, nor a Bible, and we get to see what happens if someone does. Kichijiro has his own story, but you should watch the movie. Eventually, as you might suspect, the Inquisitor does come to Tomogi. It was going to come out that there were priests in the village, that was inevitable. Here is what the Inquisitor wants. He will give out silver to anyone who has information on Christians, because he was told there were Christians in the village. He also wants four hostages, and they must pass a trial in order for him to believe that these four villagers are not Christians. They must spit on a Cross, say that the Virgin Mary is a whore, and only then will he really believe them. If they don't do it? See above.

There are very few films of this length that are consistently intriguing throughout, but even less of them seem to carry real emotional weight. There are some questions I have about Silence, particularly related to Kichijiro, because I don't understand how he lives for so long. I'm not surprised that people didn't want to watch this. It's a story that critiques religion and at the same time leans into it, this is an incredible film. There's no other way to put it and in some ways I'm left without words. The harshness of the atmosphere was truly amazing, the priests invading a very cruel and tough land. Taiwan was a great stand-in for coastal Japan, finding these locales was an excellent piece of filmmaking. These backgrounds serve to establish the priests as entering hostile ground, with some yearning for hope but others unaccepting of their ideas. The start of the film does get a little bogged down, but these scenes only serve to give the film more power as it continues, one builds to the next and the conclusion of the film is everything I wanted it to be. If you don't have any feelings while watching this, I really don't know what to say. The scenes where people are persecuted are very difficult to watch, and there are a lot of them, Silence is not a film for the faint-hearted.

I thought Silence was a film with a strange existential dilemma, with our priests being Portuguese yet them not speaking the language. Sometimes Portuguese comes up and sometimes it doesn't, but this is weird and probably the only reason I'm not giving this a perfect score. The language thing is merely a distraction though, I thought Garfield and Driver gave spectacular performances. So did the Inquisitor for that matter, but I have seen some complaining about the "villains" in this film being Japanese. Villain is of course a very relative term, and in any case you can't change history. Stories about whether or not someone is going to doom other people to death as a result of their own beliefs, there just aren't very many of those. Of course, there is also always the lurking question of what will happen if or when they find Ferreira. Did Ferreira truly apostatize, or is he dead? This is something else one must watch the film to find out. These scenes carry so much wait, but I can see that if someone is disengaged from the story after about 20 minutes, there is no reason on Earth to continue watching this. I imagine that it would only get worse if that's how one felt.

I'm not familiar with other films like this one, including Scorsese's other efforts, as I just haven't watched them before. Silence is a truly great film though. I know why people have a hesitancy to watch long films, but when they're this good, there's something to be lost if you don't watch it. One thing that was coming to mind, is what someone would think if they believe negative things about the Catholic Church in the first place? This kind of thing, it's answered in the film. I assure you of that. There's one thing I know, I have to keep going to the theater this often because I cannot wind up missing out on something else like this. Considering I'm basically done with 2016 other than some random tracking back in the future, I'm left stunned that this film was not given any amount of true recognition. It just doesn't make sense to me, and this is better than so many other films. I repeat, so many other films. I was left with some questions abuot my own place in the universe after watching this, I don't have the answers to them and I will probably be thinking of them for a long time. I was surprised that this film actually bothered to explain the Japanese point of view, but that's probably why it was so long in the first place. I really appreciate that it was.

9.5/10


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline RedJed

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #115 on: March 18, 2019, 05:46:04 AM »
Yeah, Captive State was a total fucking mess.

There was just too much disconnected and confusing stuff going on here, it was like Rupert Wyatt must have had too much leeway in development of this or something. It just came across as a concept that maybe sounded better on paper but the development of it (or lack there of) showed in the final product.

I went in blind except the main trailer so certainly expected something drastically different than this. That was problem number one. Then came the massive and incredibly confusing plot holes from scene to scene, the lack of a flow or transition from one supposed plot point to another, the incredible number of characters that had such little development that you couldn't even keep track who they were and what their relation was to this muddled story....I could go on and on but you get it.

I had a hard time as well even staying awake during this (granted, this was my third film on Saturday, but still...). The story had little engagement to it. And most importantly, it was not built well from start to finish and I found myself if I should just split out of this since nothing redeeming was keeping me there except a comfortable reclining seat. So I ended up just dozing off for 5 minutes at a time.

I guess the only good things I can say is that there was the twist at the end that kind of tied up some extremely loose ends, but it still didn't satisfy me at all. I liked the general looks of the alien tech and aliens in general, but the effects sure didn't do them any favors either. Much less an explanation about this alien life form.

Looking back, I think I would preferred them to think of whatever this long winded story was, to slow it down and just have the first film be an alien invasion to the max hook with the events they talked about in the first five minutes being a basis for a first film. That might have helped this out tremendously and could have potentially set up a trilogy if done right. But that was not the plan obviously.

I don't know if this was the worst film I've seen this year, but it most certainly was the most confusing and tonally dull one for sure.

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #116 on: March 18, 2019, 05:50:36 PM »


Snatched (2017), directed by Jonathan Levine

I had a pretty shitty day, so I thought that the best way to deal with that was by throwing on some trash tonight. Snatched is certainly trash, but it's also the first Amy Schumer movie or television program that I've watched. How is this possible? That's simple, you just be like me and don't pay attention to shit. Eventually, I'll probably watch a lot more even though I know this is trash, but make no mistake my hopes were not high. I wanted to laugh at some stupid things, and for the most part that's what happened, although said laughs were few and far between. My expectation was that having Goldie Hawn in this would level things out a little bit, but I'm not cool with the kind of brownphobia that exists in Snatched. There's so much of it, it's prevalent throughout the opening of the film as well as the parts that are actually important, I'm just not cool with that. That being said, if you want to see Amy Schumer's nips, this just might be the film for you! In reality though, you should steer clear. Steer very, very clear of this mess.

Snatched focuses on Emily, a woman who works in a clothing store at the start of the film, but is fired for vapid, poor behavior. She is also dumped by her boyfriend not long after that, but she has a trip for two to Ecuador that she's unable to get a refund for. Nothing's going to stop Emily from going on her vacation, so inevitably, she turns to her mother, Linda (Goldie Hawn). Linda does not want to go to Ecuador, she just wants Emily to move on from her failed relationship. Emily has a brother, Jeffrey (Ike Barinholtz), and he stays inside all the time so he definitely isn't going on a trip. In the end, it turns out that nobody else will go, and that Linda is very afraid of foreign countries. All I could think about this shit, was fucking hell. It's coastal Ecuador, who wouldn't want to go there? What's wrong with you? Anyway, with that out of the way, Linda does agree to come along and off they go.

There's no padding in any of these scenes, they come very quickly and the film is quite short as a result of this. Upon arriving at their hotel in Ecuador, Emily meets a man named James (Tom Bateman) at the bar, and they get their drink on. At the same time, Linda and Emily also meet Ruth (Wanda Sykes) and Barb (Joan Cusack), some weird people traveling to Ecuador as well. I don't know how to describe this shit. Anyway, Emily embarrasses herself repeatedly, but none of that matters. The reason? James takes Linda and Emily on a sightseeing trip, and during their trip, a white fan rams into James' car. This leads to Emily and Linda being abducted, and Linda is very certain that James was in on this the whole time. Anyway, the leader of these kidnappers is a generic villain called Hector Morgado (Oscar Jaenada), and he calls Jeffrey to demand $100,000 in ransom money. Jeffrey subsequently calls the State Department, coming in contact with Morgan Russell (Bashir Salahuddin), and it turns out that Morgan hates this guy's fucking guts. Anyway, the women are to be transported to Colombia, and who knows for what reason, but they are. That's that, they're kidnapped.

It's dififcult to know what to say about something like this, but the rampant anti-Latinx racism and the way this presented a picture of Ecuador being inherently unsafe, I felt like that was negative propaganda. Usually these kinds of films receive a fake country name or something like that, this one does not. I thought everything about this was so easy to dislike, bar the appearance of Christopher Meloni. I kept hoping for him to reappear and he didn't, so that was too bad. Amy Schumer's character is so easy to dislike, I find this incredible with all the backlash she's received over the last few years. It doesn't make any sense that she would play this role. She's a complete idiot, a typical basic bitch. That stuff is not funny. Goldie Hawn does have some good jokes, but there aren't all that many of them. I can't believe how short this film is and that it features absolutely nothing that sticks with me other than Meloni's character. I can't believe that. The caricature of Jeffrey, I did think that was a little funny too I must admit. With incels being what they are now, to see one on screen, it always gets some amusement out of me.

This film is also a mess, with things taking around 35 minutes to actually get to the point where Schumer and Hawn are kidnapped. I could not tell you why it took so long, but before I looked back up what felt like a few minutes later and matters were already coming to a conclusion. If that sounds like shit, that's because it is shit. Unfortunately, this is just missing absolutely everything that a film like this needs to have. The side characters have to be memorable and really need a chance to ham it up. The main characters have to be engaging in some way and one of them is not. The racism that seems to loom around this kind of film, particularly when it was made in 2017 when people were all well aware of these things, that's something that isn't good. The action scenes a film like this requires are also non-existent, so overall I am very confused by what I just watched. I really don't know how someone could become famous like Amy Schumer if this is what their material is like.

3.5/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Logan
4.   Wonder Woman
5.   The Big Sick
6.   Thor: Ragnarok
7.   Logan Lucky
8.   The Beguiled
9.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
10.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
11.   The Lost City of Z
12.   First They Killed My Father
13.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
14.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
15.   It
16.   Battle of the Sexes
17.   Okja
18.   Kong: Skull Island
19.   It Comes at Night
20.   Split
21.   1922
22.   Personal Shopper
23.   Chuck
24.   Atomic Blonde
25.   Wheelman
26.   The Lego Batman Movie
27.   Megan Leavey
28.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
29.   American Made
30.   Beauty and the Beast
31.   Imperial Dreams
32.   Murder on the Orient Express
33.   The Zookeeper's Wife
34.   Free Fire
35.   Win It All
36.   The Wall
37.   Life
38.   Breathe
39.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
40.   Sleight
41.   Alone in Berlin
42.   A United Kingdom
43.   Trespass Against Us
44.   The Mountain Between Us
45.   War Machine
46.   Happy Death Day
47.   Justice League
48.   To the Bone
49.   Wakefield
50.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
51.   Sand Castle
52.   CHiPs
53.   Death Note
54.   The Belko Experiment
55.   The Great Wall
56.   Fist Fight
57.   Snatched
58.   Wilson
59.   Queen of the Desert
60.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #117 on: March 19, 2019, 06:28:10 PM »


King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017), directed by Guy Ritchie

When King Arthur: Legend of the Sword was released, my initial reaction was one of surprise, similar to when Robin Hood was released last year. I could not believe that a studio would decide to make either of those stories again, but this is said with the benefit of hindsight. It is now clear to everyone that these stories can no longer make money, and that they are probably buried for good. I do not think it's a matter of execution, that a studio can make money if they do them right. That's total crap. Also, those two movies are very identical, although both have differing aspects. I just don't understand how both Warner Bros. and Lionsgate could believe those two movies would launch a cinematic universe for them. That's putting their heads in the sand. Oddly enough, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword has much less sequel-bait than Robin Hood. They both shouldn't have any of it at all. Someone thought they could make six movies about King Arthur. What? I don't get it. Anyway, with that in mind, this isn't exactly like any other King Arthur. Guy Ritchie directed it, so there's going to be his touches. Unfortunately, that also means he wrote it, and this isn't the kind of movie he's used to writing. The odds that this would be bad are quite high, and I wasn't remotely surprised by how things turned out. Now, with the benefit of hindsight, I also have no idea why anyone would let him direct Aladdin, but by that point it was too late. What we have if that stinks, is a case of someone being given the keys to make their career and that person subsequently destroying it.

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword begins in Camelot, as it should, but this situation is a little different from what I understand. Mordred is a warlock whom we never see again, who decided that he wanted to ignite a war between mages and humans. Uther Pendragon (Eric Bana) is the British King, and he is leading the humans. He saves Camelot by beheading Mordred after a scene where we see some gigantic elephants, everything seems to be fine. Instead it is not. Vortigern (Jude Law) is Uther's brother, and he's a traitor. In order for him to become King, he sacrificies his wife to some bitches who live in the moat (yes, this is definitely a fantasy movie), which leads to Vortigern becoming a demon knight. Vortigern subsequently kills Uther's wife, Uther himself, and Arthur escapes on a boat to Londinium. Upon arrival in Londinium, Arthur is raised by prostitutes. We are given a very long montage of how he grew up, something I thought was awful storytelling, but it turns out this is decent direction covering up for Ritchie's own bad script. Anyway, we move forward through the years to Arthur as an adult, where he has shockingly become a skilled fighter and a street urchin of some kind. He confronts a group of Vikings who treated a prostitute like garbage, and forces them to pay restitution. This works out in Guy Ritchie fashion as well, with someone telling the story as the action goes on. You should be familiar with this if you've seen his movies.

While Arthur was telling this story to Jack's Eye (Michael McElhatton), all I could think was "here we go again with the goofy names," but at least it fit in this context. Jack's Eye breaks some unfortunate news to Arthur, that these vikings were under the protection of King Vortigern, so now Arthur's in some trouble. He attempts to escape the city, but he's captured and spotted for not having a brand on his arm. This leads to him being put on a ship with many other men, and it turns out that some water has vacated an area near Camelot to reveal a sword in a stone. Laugh all you want. Anyway, Arthur's able to pull the sword out as you know, and his true lineage is revealed. King Vortigern wants to kill him, but he cannot. Arthur escapes, and subsequently he joins a resistance movement against Vortigern, even though he may not want to. Notable members are the mage (Astrid Berges-Frisbey), a woman working for Merlin, who has turned into an eagle. There's also two former knights of Uther's, Sir Bedivere (Djimon Hounsou), the leader of the resistance, and Goosefat Bill (Aidan Gillen), a great archer. Then there's Arthur's friends from London, a guy called Wet Stick (Kingsley Ben-Adir), Percival (Craig McGinlay), Back Lack (Neil Maskell), and Back Lack's son, Blue (Bleu Landau). What more can you say about this?

There are obviously far too many characters, and I left out some wives and a few other members of the resistance, or of Arthur's mother, the Lady of the Lake, of David Beckham's cameo, of Vikings, do you get the point yet? There are too many people you have to recognize on face alone, and due to the nature of a film with a lot of white looking people from the British Isles, some of them do look very much alike. That's probably the point of some of the ridiculous names, but I know that some of them are also part of the story. I feel like this is a film both enhanced and ruined by Ritchie at the same time. Ritchie's skill with scenes similar to what I mentioned with Jack's Eye, this is one of the only things actually holding this mess together. His script is completely uninspired, and by the middle of the film I was getting fucking bored. I really was, and no amount of giant elephants and fantasy CGI is really going to change that. I also must admit that I don't care about the story of King Arthur whatsoever. I could never give a fuck about something like this, it isn't for me. The kind of fantasy story I want to see is something that hasn't been done before, like Game of Thrones. I do not need this. I also thought the film was more interesting when Arthur was tramping around Londinium and telling those stories, but such joys were short-lived.

I believe I've said before that I think Charlie Hunnam is an underrated actor, and I do, but he's given nothing of quality to work with here at all. He's also absolutely terrible at picking his roles, this year's Triple Frontier was no exception to that. The Lost City of Z, on the other hand, now that was quality work. That second film and King Arthur: Legend of the Sword came out in the same year, I am loathe to compare them because one is quality cinema and the other is not, but it's something that regularly came to mind. Jude Law is also well cast and so is Aidan Gillen, but it's strange to see Gillen playing a bad guy. Law is more naturally suited to it, he does his best with the material, but the material is not good. The film is just boring, I don't know how else to describe it. There are so many things here that shouldn't be boring, but it is. There's a deluge of this kind of material and a lack of original fantasy stories being released as films these days, so when a film is as trite as this, you really notice. This is also two hours, which isn't surprising considering the amount of characters, but there is no depth given to any of these. Part of that is because there were supposed to be six of these movies, but I guess I just don't care. Guy Ritchie is a lot better than this, he obviously got up in his own ass when he wrote this, and it's best that this bombed so everyone could move on. I have no idea who Warner Bros. thought was the audience for this, I could never imagine an American audience going to see this film regardless of who made it or the quality of it. I could drone on and on, but I've already said more than this deserves. At least The Man from U.N.C.L.E was fun.

4.5/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Logan
4.   Wonder Woman
5.   The Big Sick
6.   Thor: Ragnarok
7.   Logan Lucky
8.   The Beguiled
9.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
10.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
11.   The Lost City of Z
12.   First They Killed My Father
13.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
14.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
15.   It
16.   Battle of the Sexes
17.   Okja
18.   Kong: Skull Island
19.   It Comes at Night
20.   Split
21.   1922
22.   Personal Shopper
23.   Chuck
24.   Atomic Blonde
25.   Wheelman
26.   The Lego Batman Movie
27.   Megan Leavey
28.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
29.   American Made
30.   Beauty and the Beast
31.   Imperial Dreams
32.   Murder on the Orient Express
33.   The Zookeeper's Wife
34.   Free Fire
35.   Win It All
36.   The Wall
37.   Life
38.   Breathe
39.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
40.   Sleight
41.   Alone in Berlin
42.   A United Kingdom
43.   Trespass Against Us
44.   The Mountain Between Us
45.   War Machine
46.   Happy Death Day
47.   Justice League
48.   To the Bone
49.   Wakefield
50.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
51.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
52.   Sand Castle
53.   CHiPs
54.   Death Note
55.   The Belko Experiment
56.   The Great Wall
57.   Fist Fight
58.   Snatched
59.   Wilson
60.   Queen of the Desert
61.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #118 on: March 20, 2019, 12:53:49 PM »
French, subtitles



Climax (2019), directed by Gaspar Noe

In things that matter only to me, I struggled with which list to place Climax on, but I decided that due to some other listings I have made it will go on this year's. In the end I don't think that really matters. What does is what I think of Gaspar Noe. I've heard a lot of things, but in truth this is the first film of his that I've watched. I've also seen comments saying that this was his most accessible film, and I have seen some descriptions of his others. Enter the Void sounds like the only other one that I'd like, but what I thought about Climax was that I was waiting for something to be like this. When I went to see it today, someone inexplicably got a seat right next to mine, which led me to go sit in the back of the theater. This was a wise decision. I should also say that when I left my house, I wasn't sure that I actually wanted to go see this. I was having second thoughts, but I should point out that I thought the subject matter would be worse than it actually is. It's like when I went to see Suspiria. Being uncomfortable is the point, but I would daresay that Climax is more enjoyable, and to me is also the better film. Talk about things I did not expect to say. Part of this is because Climax is an hour shorter, but the other part is because all of the events are distilled to a more personal level. We also get to know the characters just a little bit more, and as a result this is absolutely insane.

Climax starts with a woman bloody and crawling through the snow in Paris, circa 1996. Our view is from overhead, one of many interesting perspectives we'll have over the course of these events. After Noe rolls the end credits, Climax then shows a series of audition tapes, with strange books and VHS tapes alongside of the television. Some that stuck in my mind were Harakiri, Salo, Suspiria, and a book about homosexuals. Do not look this stuff up for your own benefit. Anyway, these audition tapes are far more important than I'd realized, as they give insights to the mindset of the case. This is a film with a lot of characters, you need to pay attention to them, and some of them are beyond description. As the film goes, you just know who they are. After the audition tapes, the dancers have gathered in an abandoned school and have an incredible 12 minute long take, five of which is an insane dance. Apparently this took 16 takes and only two of them were usable. After this scene, it's time for an after-party, with copious amounts of sangria supplied by them by the troupe's master, Emmanuelle (Claude Gajan Maull). The lead choreographer is Selva (Sofia Boutella), and after this, we are introduced to the rest of the group we've seen in the tapes.

Everyone from the tapes has now been there for a little while, and they gossip like crazy about one another. There are also several personal issues with the group. Selva's current hookup David (Romain Guillermic) has apparently been sleeping with just about everyone, there are problems between Taylor (Taylor Kastle) and his sister Gazelle (Giselle Palmer) because she's interested in guys who aren't her brother (wtf), and that's not even scratching the surface of this situation. However, I just can't get into everything. So many of these people have slept with each other, many of them are bi or gay, and over the course of these events, we find that a lot of them just have really sick thoughts. Noe puts together about twenty minutes of conversations that enlighten the viewer on this point, but one thing's clear, their mindset is wacked before the catalyst for the events that follow. The catalyst itself, is that someone has spiked the sangria with LSD. You don't find out who did it until the end of the film, but things spiral so far out of control once the drugs start to kick in. Of course, people are going to be blamed for spiking the LSD, but more than that, everyone has their personal issues and everyone wants to fuck each other as it is. This, obviously, is not good. Did I tell you that Emmanuelle's son is there and that he drank some of the sangria too? Did I mention that he's like 7 or 8 years old?

I didn't want to go through the entire cast because there's a lot going on here, and you either want to watch this or you don't. It's the kind of movie you'll really like, or you're really hate it. There's no room for anything else. Even though I thought the film was very good and borderline great, there were some things I didn't like. The long-take scene closing out the film is genuinely fucking amazing, 42 minutes without cuts, but I hated the way the camera turned upside down for the last ten minutes of it. I found that aspect to be a little nauseating. What I did like was that the film was super intense and was committed to keeping the viewer on their toes, and I also liked the way the events were set up from one to the next. Nothing was really missing from this as far as my tastes go, there are only things that either go too far or creative decisions that bother me, like the upside down camera. The mayhem and conflict of these scenes, I just don't know how to describe it. Eventually everyone stops focusing on who spiked the drink and anarchy sets in, and the long take passes off from one character to the next while other people scream in the background, sometimes because they've nearly burned themselves to death, or done other things.

Again, I don't know what to say about something like this because this film is so self-indulgent, Noe is clearly full of himself. There's a sequence of credits before the mayhem where his name is plastered all over the screen over and over again, so you know, that is what it is. I did more research and found that the actors besides Boutella had no prior experience, but I thought all of them had great performances. Boutella is on screen the most and is given the more emotional parts of the plot, she carries them very well. Overall, I just can't believe what I watched. I was entranced by the great selection of dance music, the dance scenes were all incredible, and so were the long takes. Climax is so fucking weird. The manner of this film is so disorienting, and the placement of the audition tapes is something I found to be another negative. It's not like anyone could have realized what was to come from those scenes, but this also could simply be a lesson that I need to pay more attention. It's still a very jarring way to be introduced to other characters, but that's one of the only negatives I have for this. It's a very strong film, very enthralling. Someone might think it's trash, and while I disagree, I can't completely dispute it. The subject matter here is inherently divisive.

8/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Arctic
2.   Climax
3.   High Flying Bird
4.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
5.   Captain Marvel
6.   Paddleton
7.   Cold Pursuit
8.   Happy Death Day 2U
9.   Greta
10.   Triple Frontier
11.   Fighting with My Family
12.   Velvet Buzzsaw
13.   Alita: Battle Angel
14.   The Kid
15.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
16.   The Upside
17.   Captive State
18.   Escape Room
19.   What Men Want
20.   Miss Bala
21.   Glass
22.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
23.   The Prodigy
24.   Polar
25.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #119 on: March 20, 2019, 06:16:37 PM »


Patriots Day (2016), directed by Peter Berg

For once it appears I have a lot of things I was thinking about prior to starting this review. First is that I can't believe how many movies Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg have done together. It is very ridiculous and the movies are progressively getting worse as shown by Mile 22. Another thing coming to mind was that I apparently lied about being done with 2016 for a while. I really thought I was, but I forgot I had this listed. Then, there's the more obvious thing, that making a film about the Boston Bombing less than four years after the bombing itself, that's really strange. I should also point out that filming started not even three whole years after the bombing, and production started not even two whole years after the bombing, which I think is insanity. Yes, a film like this does feel like exploitation, particularly when everyone is so aware of the events surrounding it. Deepwater Horizon was another film produced after a disaster, but in that case the film is a message against corporate greed. In the case of Patriots Day, the film is very much about what the terrorists actually did, but there's major appreciation towards first responders so that people understand how much of a toll it takes. There are also scenes related to those who survived and lost their limbs, and the struggles they endured.

I'm going to toss my usual format because I need to talk about the idea of exploitation. Hotel Mumbai is coming out very soon, I'm going to review that too, but I'm left to wonder if that film also falls in the same category. More to the point, how much it does because they all do? The Mumbai attacks took place over ten years ago now, but living in the West, I don't remember a lot of the details of the attack itself. I think that's the case for a lot of people and that the attack as a whole was much less publicized in the United States. What I'm wondering is whether or not it's okay for me to have more interest in seeing Hotel Mumbai because I don't know the details? That's something I don't know how to answer so I'm sure a lot of people also don't. The fact is that there is a market for these films, but more to the point, a lot of the people who had these things happen to them also want to have their stories told. Some don't, obviously. Should the victims be deprived of telling their story because it doesn't feel good to see? The marketplace ultimately decides that. Also coming to mind is the way that people were just slaughtered in a terrorist attack in Christchurch. I don't think there's any story to be told there at all, that may not stop someone from trying. That's where exploitation kicks in. In this case, I'm sure some people wanted to know how Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was caught, and I guess that's a fair justification for making the film. I do think that ultimately these kinds of films do not serve to unite the community and the reaction shows that, so you can take it for what it's worth. I would suggest that we need more time than four years to realize whether or not there's any moral lesson or perspective to be garnered from these kinds of terrorist attacks.

With all that in mind, I suppose I have to set this up and explain who plays these parts. Tommy Saunders (Mark Wahlberg) is a composite character who serves as a sergeant in the Boston Police Department. I am very surprised that Peter Berg had the caution to ensure that this character was not someone who solved anything, but was rather there for the events to witness them from on the ground. More directors should take note of that. Tommy has a really bad knee and he's also been suspended, and in an awkward scene to kick things off, he is ordered by the Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis (John Goodman) to patrol the line at the Boston Marathon in order to kick his suspension. The subject of the suspension never comes up again, which is also good. In the following scenes, we are introduced to a few people who play a part in the events to come. Jeffrey Pugilese (J.K. Simmons) is a sergeant with the Watertown Police Department, Sean Collier (Jake Picking) is an officer at MIT, Jessica (Rachel Brosnahan) and Patrick (Christopher O'Shea) are a married couple going to the marathon, and Dun Meng (Jimmy O. Yang) is a Chinese student with a nice car. The Tsarnaev brothers, nefarious as they are, have also made plans. Tamerlan (Themo Melikidze) is obviously the leader of the two, and Dzhkohar (Alex Wolff) is the follower, both of them were fucking idiots. They lived with Tamerlan's wife Katherine (Melissa Benoist) and their daughter, doing all of this shit in the living room. Somehow, as you may know, Katherine has entirely evaded punishment on all of this shit. It doesn't make any sense.

Composite characters like Tommy being what they are, they are also given wives, and in this case he is given a nurse named Carol (Michelle Monaghan). Before the bombing, he is having some knee problems and Carol brings down a knee brace, but she escapes unscathed from the pressure cookers that the Tsarnaev brothers detonated. Everything else plays out about exactly how you'd expect. In comes Deval Patrick (Michael Beach), and along with him is Richard DesLauriers (Kevin Bacon), a Special Agent in charge of the Boston field office. As I have already alluded to, while Tommy is the film's lead character, there is a great focus on what the Tsarnaev's were doing, and Tommy is merely there to see what happens rather than being a fictional participant in the events. I think the only real contributions he makes are to respond to the 9-1-1 call for the carjacking that happened to Dun Meng, and to point out the order of some buildings on the street so that the agents could follow a trail of surveillance cameras. Again, I am surprised by this, but that was hardly a big deal. I think everyone knows how this went down, but at the end of the film, there are some comments from survivors of the bombing, as well as officials who played a part in the manhunt for both brothers.

I have some critiques because obviously I do, but the one sticking with me to a point where I need to immediately mention it is that there is a paucity of material related to how the Tsarnaev's became radicalized. We are given one sentence from Katherine, but that's it, and that's just a really thin way of looking at things. On the other hand, that's not the worst thing either. The less time given to a bad ideology, the better. Patriots Day is intensely focused on the Tsarnaev's actions, the first responders, and the regularity of the lives of some of the people who were harmed by the Tsarnaev's. I think to that point, this film is just about as good as Deepwater Horizon, which I think I gave a 7. The message of corporate greed does land hard with me, but ultimately I'm left with thoughts about the depiction of what the Tsarnaev's did. Some of that stuff is a little vague now that I don't remember every little detail, but I remembered a whole lot of it before I turned this on. I thought this was an effective presentation of the events, and I do think this film has some merit. I think there's also disturbing lessons to be learned from what can happen when two idiots get a lot of weapons, but this is something I think we already know.

Perhaps the best way to judge these kinds of films is on a case by case basis. Who would've thought? The performances of the brothers, I hate to say, were quite good and extremely effective. The entitlement of Dzohkhar really made things even more difficult to understand, the attacks themselves seemed to reside in a strange place in his mind. But, one must keep in mind that the film eschew any thoughts of exploring their jihadist ideology, so one shouldn't take that aspect too seriously. The movie is very focused on the effects on the communities in Boston, and how they pulled together, all that Boston Strong kind of stuff. So, with that in mind, and because I thought the end of the film addressed matters very nicely, I think this film was exactly as good as Deepwater Horizon was. Judging on a case by case basis, Patriots Day was worth the time it took to make it. The performance by Jimmy O. Yang also really stands out when you consider his role in the events was the most heroic civilian role of them all, that he ran away from a gas station to call the police when those dopes had him kidnapped. Those scenes were extremely effective.

7/10


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #120 on: March 21, 2019, 06:31:37 PM »


Darkest Hour (2017), directed by Joe Wright

Arguably never before has there been a more easy comparison between two films nominated for awards, with Dunkirk and Darkest Hour coming out in the same year. I am unable to resist doing so myself. Let's face it, how can one not compare the two? They're both about the same event from two different perspectives, one on the ground and the other back at home in London. These are two radically different films in scope, one takes place nearly entirely on set and the other outside, but again, they are about the same event. Comparing the two also very easily exposes the shortcomings of Darkest Hour. I know there are many Churchill fetishists out there, I have a family member who is one of them. I was told by him a while ago that I should watch Darkest Hour and Dunkirk as a double feature, but if I'd done so, this difference would have been even more pronounced. I may even feel negatively about Darkest Hour if I'd done that. What I thought about Dunkirk was that Christopher Nolan's direction really busted down the door to make an absolutely classic film, and in the case of Darkest Hour, the entertainment value is derived from one performance. That is one performance alone in a film with a large ensemble cast, I should note. With that knowledge, I am absolutely mystified as to how this was nominated for awards. However, as this year's Oscars may show, the people who vote for these things may have a huge anglophilia problem. Bohemian Rhapsody is all the real evidence you need to show it's the case.

If you don't know what Darkest Hour is about, I don't know what the fuck's wrong with you. The film begins in 1940 with the Labour Party demanding the resignation of Neville Chamberlain (Ronald Pickup) for reasons that most everyone is aware of. He was weak and he was a coward. Chamberlain wanted to handpick his successor, but for whatever reason Viscount Halifax (Stephen Dillane) has decided the time is not right for him to become Prime Minister of Britain. Chamberlain was also still the leader of the ruling Conservative Party, and in talks with King George VI (Ben Mendelsohn), it is clear that the King does not want this, but everyone has been left with no choice. If you have not realized, Darkest Hour takes some extreme creative liberties with how things worked out. Enter Winston Churchill (Gary Oldman). We pan over to his abode, where he gets angry at his new secretary, Elizabeth Layton (Lily James), because she did not hear him properly. Winston's wife Clementine (Kristin Scott Thomas) does not like this, so in the end Miss Layton returns with a telegram. The King has invited Churchill to Buckingham Palace to form a government, which as anyone could tell, is exactly what happens. Churchill is a smart man, so he includes Chamberlain and Halifax in his war cabinet as they receive news that Hitler has invaded Belgium and the Netherlands.

Churchill has a poor reputation in Parliament due to prior conduct, but the three parties thought he would be the best Prime Minister. He was the right man at the right job at the right time as it has been said. Churchill is instantly met with major problems, of course. He travels to France and the French PM finds him to be delusional, because what Churchill says is completely deluded. Inevitably, we come to the matter of Dunkirk. The British Army was trapped at Dunkirk, and Churchill gives an order to lead a rear-guard action so that the British can buy time to evacuate forces from Dunkirk. We then get to the real heart of the film, the War Cabinet Crisis. Churchill has an outburst at Chamberlain over his prior appeasement strategy, and eventually Chamberlain and Halifax decide to force Churchill's hand. They want him to negotiate for peace, and if he does not they will resign and force a vote of no confidence, to lead to someone challenging Churchill's position. In Halifax's diary, he had written that succeeding Chamberlain would be impossible, this aspect is not really covered in the film. These battles between Halifax and Churchill inevitably spiral, such as you'd expect, but Churchill is forced to consider the idea of suing for peace. And there's your film.

Obviously I left out some major details that happen after Churchill is forced to play his hand, but I think everyone knows what happens from there. Due to Dunkirk using fictional characters, as well as that film's willingness to discard of them, the difference in tension between the two films is quite incredible. This is where we get into the difference between biographies and original films. Gary Oldman's performance is fantastic, I think I'll wind up being in agreement with those who awarded him for that performance. Darkest Hour, however, is entirely reliant upon that performance. The inherent issue with biographies, and if you've noticed the reason why I rarely rate them as highly as other kinds of films, is because a biography really needs to bring some kind of technical innovation or events I don't know about in order to liven things up. The problem here is that I already knew about all this stuff. Most adults should know about this subject as well, and the evacuation of Dunkirk is something that was addressed in a film that arrived earlier in the same year. The release of Dunkirk undoubtedly works against Darkest Hour, but I think there are so many other good films from 2017 that do as well. I haven't watched them all yet either!

Where Darkest Hour really succeeds beyond Oldman's spectacular performance, is technically. Didn't I just say that thing about technical innovation? Space launches, unfortunately for this film and my view towards it, massively surpass those innovations with makeup and fat suits. Plaudits for those things were deserved, I'm not saying that. I also thought the room they used as a stand-in for Buckingham Palace was spectacularly decorated and adorned. This was something I thought every single time the room was on screen, so I thought I would mention it. I rarely mention set design, so that tells you just how much I thought it stood out. The state of the buildings was excellent too, and so was the cinematography. I can't compare it to the some of the other films as I haven't watched them, but there are countless very good shots of Churchill. So, technically, this is brilliant. Some of the other characters, like that of Viscount Halifax, are very well developed and nicely performed. I also never thought Ben Mendelsohn would make a good British king, but here we are. It also feels like this guy is in everything, even though he isn't. That's a good thing in his case.

Ultimately, with all those positives, I think Darkest Hour does have some complete failures to balance them out. The historical accuracy of these events is sometimes incorrect to a point where I could only wonder how the events could have been untangled in a way that everyone could understand. Truthfully, I could not come up with one. There's also some complete fabrications, like with Churchill riding on the London Underground. That scene is totally ludicrous and took me out of the end of the film. I also think that films such as this one, particularly with a figure like Churchill who did bad things, serve to whitewash his sins and make everyone forget about them. I told you about my family member, correct? This is what happens when films fail in that regard. Creatively messing around with what a figure like Winston Churchill really was, I think that's a problem. I do expect that this role is going to be revisited at some point as well, it would surprise me if it wasn't. There's too much ground left uncovered, but I hope that someone else writes the film this time. For my money, even though this is something I would call a good film with some extremely positive aspects, I think the screenwriter did not do what could have been done with the story. So, take it for what it's worth, but this film is not great and just below that. Perhaps if I was British, I would feel different. But I'm not. The film just isn't insightful enough, and I realized that this is currently somewhat high on my list, but that should go down quite a bit by the time I'm done unless 2017 sucked.

7.5/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Logan
4.   Wonder Woman
5.   The Big Sick
6.   Thor: Ragnarok
7.   Logan Lucky
8.   The Beguiled
9.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
10.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
11.   The Lost City of Z
12.   First They Killed My Father
13.   Darkest Hour
14.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
15.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
16.   It
17.   Battle of the Sexes
18.   Okja
19.   Kong: Skull Island
20.   It Comes at Night
21.   Split
22.   1922
23.   Personal Shopper
24.   Chuck
25.   Atomic Blonde
26.   Wheelman
27.   The Lego Batman Movie
28.   Megan Leavey
29.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
30.   American Made
31.   Beauty and the Beast
32.   Imperial Dreams
33.   Murder on the Orient Express
34.   The Zookeeper's Wife
35.   Free Fire
36.   Win It All
37.   The Wall
38.   Life
39.   Breathe
40.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
41.   Sleight
42.   Alone in Berlin
43.   A United Kingdom
44.   Trespass Against Us
45.   The Mountain Between Us
46.   War Machine
47.   Happy Death Day
48.   Justice League
49.   To the Bone
50.   Wakefield
51.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
52.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
53.   Sand Castle
54.   CHiPs
55.   Death Note
56.   The Belko Experiment
57.   The Great Wall
58.   Fist Fight
59.   Snatched
60.   Wilson
61.   Queen of the Desert
62.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #121 on: March 22, 2019, 01:00:59 PM »


Us (2019), directed by Jordan Peele

Early 2019's most anticipated film by some distance is Us, so of course I was going to run out to see it as soon as possible. One thing I was thinking once I got in the theater was that people's expectations for this film are probably way too high. Get Out was a unique experience, there is no way to actually follow up on it. It is a unique film that addressed the problems of our time in a way that couldn't possibly be done again without feeling like a direct copy, so in the end, it's for the best that Jordan Peele did not go this route. If you don't want to be spoiled you should turn the hell around and exit this topic, because I'm going to spoil a lot. What Peele does instead of address race specifically is to create a story with a lot of subtext, there are many people who simply won't pick up on it. There are other things that are more obvious. I will admit the only thing I really picked up on in terms of subtext was the Hands Across America deal. The reason I know about this is because after that bullshit initiative to cure hunger by holding hands, I know that Ronald Reagan wound up saying that people were hungry because they were stupid. Do you not make the connection between that, the title of this film, and what it seems like this film is about from the preview? Maybe we're evil and we inflict these things upon other humans because of our natural instincts. Anyway, there are so many cultural references here that it's totally ridiculous, but that seemed more like an attempt to ensure that everyone remains engaged rather than anything else. Surprisingly, Us is a very slow builder. It is also extremely pleasing.

The film starts off with a video referencing the aforementioned Hands Across America, and alongside of the television there are video tapes like The Goonies, C.H.U.D, and The Right Stuff. Is this a Twilight Zone version of Climax? Not quite. It's 1986 in Santa Cruz, California, and Adelaide Thomas (Madison Curry) is on a vacation with her parents. They're on the boardwalk playing carnival games, and the mother Rayne (Anna Diop) seems to be angry at the father Russell (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) because Russell is acting like a typical dad who has had some alcohol. Anyway, when Rayne goes to the bathroom, Russell is tasked with watching his kid while he plays whack-a-mole. He does not. Adelaide wanders off and comes across a hell of mirrors on the sand under the boardwalk, she is annoyed as she seems to have never seen one of these before. While down there, she encounters a version of herself, but is unable to repeat the experience to her parents. There are flashbacks to this event throughout the movie, the story is not quite told at this point. We must move on though.

After that, we snap to the present day, with Adelaide (Lupita Nyong'o) going on a beach trip with her husband Gabe (Winston Duke), their daughter Zora (Shahadi Wright Joseph), and their son Jason (Evan Alex). Ade is not having the best time in the world because she hates Santa Cruz, but they have a beach house there anyway. This is, in my opinion anyway, the film's lone gigantic plothole, but there's also another way to look at that aspect. I will treat it accordingly. Anyway, they do have friends there who also traveled to Santa Cruz, Kitty (Elisabeth Moss) and Josh (Tim Heidecker). Like the Wilson family, Kitty and Josh have two kids, twins Gwen and Maggie. Let's get to the more important part of this shit. There are some similarities to Ade's first trip to Santa Cruz. A man who was holding a sign referencing Jeremiah 11:11 in her past has been stabbed and appears to be dead in her present. The hall of mirrors is still there but has been rebranded from its previously bigoted Native motif into something referencing Merlin. I'm leaving a fuckload of details out in case someone decide they weren't going to stop reading this review, but Ade and this beach just do not go together. Jason wanders off and she has the idea that the same thing may happen to him as happened to her, but it does not. When they find Jason and go back to the house, later that night Ade wants to pack up and leave. They're not going to leave. As you can see from the preview, there's a family outside of the house. Gabe goes outside to warn them off the property, but they will not leave. When he wanted to get crazy, they got crazier and got inside. These people, whatever they are, they're US. Very much of this is explained inside of that house.

The relationship between the Tethered and their more privileged dopplegangers, I don't even know where to start with this stuff. My initial thought process was that we are unfortunate not to get more science-fiction like this. Another thought I had was that Winston Duke's dad jokes were fucking hilarious and served to make the early slowness of the plot quite enjoyable. I'm not trying to say the movie was initially boring, but I was saying that there's a massive amount of build to lead to what comes later. Fuck, I really just don't know how to go back to the Tethered. To make clear, I fully understand the juxtaposition of the scenario, but I'm more floored than anything else by the way in which some of these scenes were executed. There is one on the beach in the present that is super fucking easy to miss if you aren't paying attention, but I realized what it was at a later point in the film and was kind of freaking out in my seat. This kind of material, well, there's really a lot to it and I don't have space to focus my review around all of it or truly any specific part. What I do think is that this film was a fantastic idea, something that I think is going to become so much more appreciated over time. The amount of horror references is also totally staggeering, and each event in the film does one of my favorite things in invoking the question of "why is this happening?"

I thought Us was going to be a small scale film, but I will reveal one aspect of it, that it is not a small scale film and is far larger in scope than I ever expected. I think due to this, there is some shit that doesn't really go in junction with each other, but I'm more willing to forgive that when something is both consistently entertaining and ambitious as this is. I think on some level this is to poverty as Get Out is to racism, but I doubt that's ever going to be explicitly stated by Jordan Peele. If you start thinking about this too much, there are aspects of the story that do break down, but there are a ridiculous amount of other things that do not break down. To me, that is its big achievememt. More than that, there are numerous technical achievements here and incredible performances. There isn't a single bad performance in the film, but Lupita Nyong'o played the lead and therefore hers is the standout. Keep in mind that she had to play two characters, this is not an easy task. There aren't enough superlatives, and we'll see how things stand come the end of the year, but there will absolutely not be many better performances than this one. Also, keep in mind that Nyong'o has never been in a horror movie. So, think about the performance when taking that into consideration.

Overall, I think Us is a great film, but it isn't as good as Get Out. Us presents different ideas, and also it arguably has plot holes, but I think that it comes together very well. Some of the things that could be perceived as plot holes are also explainable, but I think ultimately, the main idea that there's always an actual Us out there, that's what really shines through. When you see this, you can make some guesses as to what I mean, but I think you guys have picked up on that point as well. I'm trying so hard to not get into major points as I could take pages upon pages writing about this, but in two years I think this is a film that will be even more positively received than it already is. As it relates to technical things, I guess I didn't address them yet, so I'll finish up with them. The choice in music and the score itself are absolutely brilliant, so was the cinematography from MIke Gioulakis. There isn't much surprise there although most people don't know who he is, but he was the DP for It Follows. So, yeah, he knows what he's doing. I do think that Us does suffer from a few instances of it being a little too obvious what's going to come next, but there are so many things in this that really resonate with me that I unabashedly loved the film.

As a note, I'm not sure anyone cares, but Climax really was a 2018 movie so I moved it to that list.

8.5/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Us
2.   Arctic
3.   High Flying Bird
4.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
5.   Captain Marvel
6.   Paddleton
7.   Cold Pursuit
8.   Happy Death Day 2U
9.   Greta
10.   Triple Frontier
11.   Fighting with My Family
12.   Velvet Buzzsaw
13.   Alita: Battle Angel
14.   The Kid
15.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
16.   The Upside
17.   Captive State
18.   Escape Room
19.   What Men Want
20.   Miss Bala
21.   Glass
22.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
23.   The Prodigy
24.   Polar
25.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #122 on: March 23, 2019, 04:01:15 AM »


The Dirt (2019), directed by Jeff Tremaine

I think just about everyone would be skeptical of a movie about Motley Crue directed by the Jackass guy, right? I don't know how the director was chosen for this, but I have a few thoughts running through my head. When everyone hears about a music biopic, people hope that it isn't a bastardized Hollywood version of someone's story. I will tell you that it is one of those two things, but you'll have to read the whole review to figure out what. What I will say is that this is not Bohemian Rhapsody. There are things about it that are similar, but I would not call this a sanitized portrayal. What I would say is that the events presented in The Dirt are presented without commentary, you can make of them what you will. This is a dangerous road for a film to take because a lot of people are stupid fucking idiots that are unable to take those things for what they are. On the other hand, I think on some level, if you're intelligent enough to have Netflix, you should know the difference between right and wrong. Another thing I'm thinking is that some bad things that were written in their memoir were not placed in this film, so again, you can make of that what you want. There's a part in the book where they talk about raping someone, and the people in Vince Neil's car crash wound up brain damaged. He also killed his friend, but you know how those things are played on film. Take them for what they are worth. The band members are also producers, because after all, it is their story. Now, what I will tell you, is that a lot of the stuff in this movie, it's pretty fucking bad. I'm surprised this was even made.

Oddly enough, the events described in The Dirt made me want a Van Halen movie very much, even though I think punches would definitely be pulled in that case. The film begins with something that never would have been allowed in a studio movie, with all the band members trying to bang someone and some squirting involved as well. So, there's that. We snap back to 1973, with a very young, not quite Nikki Sixx screwing over his stupid mother Deana (Kathryn Morris) and having her thrown in jail so that he can get away from her. Eventually, he moves to Los Angeles, grows up, and changes his name to Nikki Sixx (Douglas Booth). Nikki, as he tells it, is plagued by not having a father and attempts to connect with him. He fails. A year later, we snap over to the suburbs, where Tommy Lee (Machine Gun Kelly) lives with his family. At a diner, Tommy abandons his date and attempts to befriend Nikki, which seems to work out nicely for them both. Nikki is forming a new band, and they need a guitarist, so they place an ad. Answering the ad, we have a fat guy and Mick Mars (Iwan Rheon), a somewhat older guy with ankylosing spondylitis. He is in bad pain, but he can jam and he joins up. The trio then needs to complete matters with a lead singer, and Tommy says that he knows a guy. Enter Vince Neil (Daniel Webber). Vince brings along his girlfriend, she decides whether or not she'll like the music and encourage him to join. She does, and there you have it, a band with no name yet.

While they have no name, they have some ideas for one. Most of them are Tommy's and Nikki's, and they suck. One of the ideas does now, and wouldn't you have it, there you have Motley Crue. They go to their first gig and get in a fight, but people like the gig well enough and they start playing shows around Los Angeles. These shows lead to an ambitious executive at Elektra Records named Tom (Pete Davidson) signing them to a five album deal. They'll need a manager too, and at this point they break the fourth wall to point out that some of the things in the film are bullshit, or that people have had to be deleted. Doc McGhee (David Costabile) is their guy, playing the role that Paul Giamatti usually plays in these kinds of films. After that, they go national, and become the Motley Crue that everyone is well aware of. As far as debauchery goes, seemingly nothing is left out of the film. That includes Tommy Lee punching a woman in the face, heroin overdoses, Vince Neil's car crash, and so much more. I will take care not to spoil what so much more actually means.

I said that I want a Van Halen movie, because the story is better and they were a bigger band, but I'm not sure we'll ever get that. Anyway, one should take this presentation for what it is. These are guys who did really bad shit, a lot of it is shown to you, they had a fun time and hit rock bottom before coming back like they started out. That is literally what happens in all of this shit. The director seems to have no idea how to deal with the last half of the film once things start spiraling downward into addiction, but I thought the first half of the film was excellent. The cameos from people playing musicians I don't really want to name, they keep this film feeling alive. The start of The Dirt feels anarchic, there's seemingly nothign these people wouldn't do. Some of the montages and presentation of concerts and music videos, the scene when they show Tommy Lee strapped onto the rotating drumset as it goes upside down, that's my jam. It's a fun ride. I can't speak to the veracity of these events so I'm going to take them for what they are and not take them too seriously. I think everyone is well aware that by the standards most people should have, three of these guys (Mick apparently the exception) are pretty bad guys.

Even though this film has been given the Hollywood treatment, I'll still say that I like it. That being said, I do have caveats. The second half of the film should have been directed by someone else. The events in that section are simply not handled very well, when you'll see this you'll know what I mean. Related to that, due to the length of a movie, there are things that Motley Crue did or had happen to them that were not covered the way they should have been. We jump from time to time like the years don't even matter, with Vince Neil's daughter getting sick and dying being one of the more obvious examples of this strange time warp. Still, overall, I think I liked this more than Bohemian Rhapsody, which I'm certain I've overrated. There's a new song at the credits as I posted above, and I thought the credits themselves were pretty great. The performances, particularly that of Machine Gun Kelly, get the spirit of the time right. I never thought I'd say that. I'm not going to say they're great as a whole, but I thought the Tommy Lee one was very good. The first half of the film is so fucking crazy, I'm glad this got made even though it's not a fantastic film. So, take that all for what it's worth. I'm wondering if part of the point of this film was to make people feel guilty for enjoying the band's music. It goes far enough to that extent where the thoughts did pop in my mind. With all that said, when it comes to a film I give 6/10, you know damn well that means you can take it or leave it. For people who enjoy their music, or for those who like these music biopics, it's worth your time to turn this on. Just don't watch this with people who may be offended.

I may talk myself into liking this less if I keep going, so I think I'm going to stop. This film is mindless and if you think you're going to get any real insights into the life of a rock star, you won't. I think that's okay though, and bear in mind that I rate anything below a 6 a failure on some level. This barely passes the mark by that standard.

6/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Us
2.   Arctic
3.   High Flying Bird
4.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
5.   Captain Marvel
6.   Paddleton
7.   Cold Pursuit
8.   Happy Death Day 2U
9.   Greta
10.   Triple Frontier
11.   Fighting with My Family
12.   The Dirt
13.   Velvet Buzzsaw
14.   Alita: Battle Angel
15.   The Kid
16.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
17.   The Upside
18.   Captive State
19.   Escape Room
20.   What Men Want
21.   Miss Bala
22.   Glass
23.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
24.   The Prodigy
25.   Polar
26.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #123 on: March 23, 2019, 06:04:35 PM »
Yiddish, subtitles



Menashe (2017), directed by Joshua Z. Weinstein

I assume that nobody expected I would watch a film in the Yiddish language, but here it is. I assume that the point of the film in the first place was to enlighten people on Hasidic cultural practices, shining a light on things that other Americans just don't know about. After all, this was an American production. The fact is that a lot of American people just simply aren't aware of the other cultures in our country. It doesn't matter which side that you come from, ignoracnce is prevalent and in many cases so is outright hatred. Numerous times in this film I had to Google things that I didn't understand, but I think that was the point of things. I couldn't imagine watching this in a theater when I'm not aware of these things and don't have the ability to find out what they are. To continue to harp on this point, that we don't know about this culture and that we are able to learn about it through a film, I always think that's great. It's the kind of thing I always appreciate, but the most important thing as far as my reviews of films go is one thing and one thing alone. Is the film good? Good is such a subjective thing. I think there are aspects of Menashe that are decidedly not good, and I'll explain what I think those are, but I think this film is extremely educational.

Menashe is a biographical story of sorts, with the titled man, Menashe, having been widowed. Menashe is a Hasidic Jew, and with his wife gone, his life has changed a lot. The way things work, his community does not believe he should have custody of his son Rieven (Ruben Niborski). Rieven, as a result, lives with the family of his mother's brother, Eizik (Yoel Weisshaus). Eizik's house is better for many reasons, the least of which being that he has more money than Menashe. For those who do not know, many people in this community do not have money as the circumstances do not allow for individuals to acquire it so easily. If you want to know more to that end, I'm unable to explain. Anyway, with these things being what they are, Menashe is tasked with finding a wife and holding down his very low paying job at a Jewish grocery market in Brooklyn. I feel very bad for this guy, let's put it that way. His first marriage, as he tells it, was not so good. He's reluctant to get married again, but the needs of the community require him to or his son cannot live with him. I must admit I do not understand why this is, it's perhaps an interpretation of the Torah, but I don't really know for certain. The easy answer would be, because it's tradition. To some people tradition matters.

Menashe himself is an unhappy man, he does not wear the traditional black coat and top hat in public. We are shown one attempt of a match making, that also does not go so well. He believes things that others do not, believes a little more in individuality, and as a result it will be difficult for him to find a wife. Maybe he's just torpedoing these dates because he doesn't want to be happy, or doesn't know what being happy even is? Eventually, things come to a head both at work and in Menashe's life. His boss is a dick, and Menashe owes money to people, but oddly this storyline completely disappears. It just turns out that Menashe is a really unlucky person. One day, he decides to do something about his problems. He goes to see Eizik, and Eizik looks down on him, so he really doesn't like what Eizik has to say about his life. So, in a bit of anger or rather of personal need, Menashe decides to take Rieven away to live with him. This leads to Eizik and Menashe having to see the rabbi (Meyer Schwartz), so they come to an agreement. Rieven can stay with his father, but he must be returned after a memorial service for Menashe's wife. After that, he really needs to find a wife.

The disappearing storyline, in combination with some odd cinematography, are the reasons I won't be giving Menashe a very high rating. It's still a good film, and as I already said, very educational. If you've read the story of this film, when it was shot, some of the people who were in it were left out of the credits so they didn't bring shame to their house. Some of the actors simply disappeared. Pulling off this project considering all that, it's quite an accomplishment. I also want to say that I think there are in some cases problems with these kinds of communities. Particularly in how much they control people's lives, and the inability with which people can leave said communities. There's been a lot of news stories in recent years, or documentaries for that matter, about those who leave extremist sects of Mormonism and how someone accomplishes that. But, let's make it extremely clear here. This is not Mormonism and people do not have those problems, it's simply hard to leave. I'm not trying to compare them, but I'm saying we know more about one sect than the other, and I'm not a fan of the way people can become controlled by doctrine. The thing about the film is, the subject of Menashe leaving is never addressed. I'm actually glad for that as the film probably wouldn't even exist if it did. Menashe does not want to leave, he loves his religion, and he also loves his son. It is just very hard for him to do something required of him because of how poorly it went the first time.

The human in me found himself feeling very bad for the film's subject, and at the same time really hoping things worked out for him, so it's clear that I liked the film. When I don't like something, I often don't feel anything at all. The disappearing storyline I am referring to is probably related to the actor also disappearing, because I kept waiting to see how Menashe would address his financial situation only for that to never come. As for the cinematography, there are so many close-ups on Menashe. This bothered me. I think I am actually saying that this film was poorly made, and it doesn't have the best story in the world either. In the end, though, while the story isn't particularly well written, I thought the educational aspect of this film was very nicely done. There are things that are not laid out as well as they should have been, but I think I understood the gist of the film and accepted the resolution to the problem. I also thought the father-son relationship was sweet, and over the course of the film the viewer was able to understand how these things all came to be what they were. Sometimes it's nice to see a movie where someone is struggling, but nothing magically comes along to save them from their problems, and we learn that other people have the same problems we all do. Those problems, however, are just slightly different based on where you come from, and if you haven't learned that as an adult, that's too bad. I was going to say that this film is probably best watched by younger people although I can't imagine a younger person actually doing so.

7/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Logan
4.   Wonder Woman
5.   The Big Sick
6.   Thor: Ragnarok
7.   Logan Lucky
8.   The Beguiled
9.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
10.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
11.   The Lost City of Z
12.   First They Killed My Father
13.   Darkest Hour
14.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
15.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
16.   It
17.   Battle of the Sexes
18.   Okja
19.   Kong: Skull Island
20.   It Comes at Night
21.   Split
22.   1922
23.   Personal Shopper
24.   Chuck
25.   Atomic Blonde
26.   Wheelman
27.   The Lego Batman Movie
28.   Megan Leavey
29.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
30.   Menashe
31.   American Made
32.   Beauty and the Beast
33.   Imperial Dreams
34.   Murder on the Orient Express
35.   The Zookeeper's Wife
36.   Free Fire
37.   Win It All
38.   The Wall
39.   Life
40.   Breathe
41.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
42.   Sleight
43.   Alone in Berlin
44.   A United Kingdom
45.   Trespass Against Us
46.   The Mountain Between Us
47.   War Machine
48.   Happy Death Day
49.   Justice League
50.   To the Bone
51.   Wakefield
52.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
53.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
54.   Sand Castle
55.   CHiPs
56.   Death Note
57.   The Belko Experiment
58.   The Great Wall
59.   Fist Fight
60.   Snatched
61.   Wilson
62.   Queen of the Desert
63.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #124 on: March 24, 2019, 06:22:43 PM »


Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017), directed by Martin McDonagh

I have no idea how it took so long for me to finally go ahead and watch Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri when I was eagerly anticipating the film before its release. I guess that's just how I am. What I was thinking when I was finally going to watch this, was that I hoped this wouldn't be like McDonagh's previous film, Seven Psychopaths. Fortunately, this was no Seven Psychopaths, although I must admit that I did laugh a few times. The comedy aspect, however, is almost entirely removed from this other than in the most dark sense. Or, for that matter, in the way that Frances McDormand wears the same jumpsuit all the time. I understand the outfit, but the jumpsuit is going to go down as an iconic costume. Whether you like the movie as a whole or not, McDormand's performance is on that level. So, get used to seeing that outfit in montages and news clips during every awards season. Anyway, I'm a bit surprised by this film because it isn't very much like In Bruges and the aforementioned Seven Psychopaths. I think In Bruges is a classic, so in some ways that isn't so great, but I think that overall, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is probably McDonagh's best film. Considering it seemed that a lot of people did not like the film's ending, there are quite a few who would probably take umbrage with that. There is something that actually bothers me about it though...

Our film is set in a town called Ebbing, and it's in Missouri as you might expect. Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand) drives down a road seemingly every day, and she sees three billboards with nothing on them. She's very angry that there has been no progress made into the death of her daughter Angela (Kathryn Newton), and it is time to do something about it. Mildred heads into town and buys the ad space from Red Welby (Caleb Landry Jones), and the stuff she puts on them, well, it's pretty bad. They say "RAPED WHILE DYING," STILL NO ARRESTS?", and "HOW COME, CHIEF WILLOUGHBY?" Some people just break in the face of injustice, but Mildred is rather driven. The billboards make people in town very angry, most notably the aforementioned Chief Willoughby (Woody Harrelson) and a very stupid idiot cop, Jason Dixon (Sam Rockwell). It turns out that more than anything else, Dixon has a reputation in town for being a racist fuck who tortured a black person. Willoughby himself is also quite popular, and he has pancreatic cancer, so people want those billboards down. As a result, when Mildred goes to the dentist, the guy is acting awfully strange. It seems like he may attack her, so she drills a hole through his fingernail. That's where we're at here.

Willougby, it may surprise you, is nice to Mildred despite this even though he doesn't like the billboards. He tells her that they probably won't find out who killed her daughter because this is the kind of crime where you just don't, but this won't abide. Eventually, things start to spiral out of control a little bit. Mildred is visited by her ex-husband Charlie (John Hawkes), this is a visit that culminates in her son Robbie (Lucas Hedges) putting a knife to Charlie's throat. Charlie also blames Mildred for Angela dying, which isn't good for Mildred's mental state. Dixon himself is on a crusade to deal with these billboards any way possible, getting some encouragement in how to do so. When things really get ridiculous though, is one day when Willoughby does not go to work. He and his wife Anne (Abbie Cornish) go fishing with their daughters, and when the trip is over, they head home. Anne isn't feeling so good, and I've already told you guys that Willoughby has pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer is very painful. Willoughby decides to pay for the billboards to stay up as some sick kind of joke, and commits suicide out in his stables. Things may, or rather they do, get a bit crazy after this.

Some of the plot threads in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri go unsolved, chiefly among them the question of who killed Angela. I found Willoughby's explanation to be quite satisfactory though. I also believe in some of the same things as David Chase, who said that people need to learn to accept the idea that all their questions about a television show may not be answered. Mystery is very important in television and film, but I do understand why people can't handle not learning what happened. The characters here are great, but I think McDonagh's films are a bit of an acquired taste. The things displayed in In Bruges really landed with me, but I know someone who deeply hated that shit. There are multiple scenes here where I was really rooting for something to happen, and despite that not happening, I liked the film a lot. The thing that happens at the end of the first act with Dixon, I must admit that I wasn't expecting that at all. Avoiding spoilers is a difficult task. To that end, there are some things that don't sit right with me. I don't like Peter Dinklage's participation in this movie, or his role for that matter. Martin McDonagh has done a lot of strange things in his three films, this is probably the strangest. I simply do not understand. A film like Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri needs to triumph in its originality, but I cannot explain the inclusion of that character.

I think Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri thrives on its performances, and with numerous actors here whom everyone should know, the expectations for those performances should be high. Those expectations were met. I already said that McDormand's role is iconic, and that's true, I don't see people forgetting her performance anytime soon. Sam Rockwell's, I think people may have gotten the wrong idea from how his story ended. I didn't really see that as a redemption at all, this is someone who always wanted to take the next step to killing a person. He also enlisted the help of someone else in doing it rather than do it all by himself. I don't know if that was the intended meaning of those scenes, but that's what I got from them. I like Woody Harrelson but I must admit I don't know what he did to merit awards consideration at all. That just seems to be based on him being Woody Fucking Harrelson. It may turn out once I complete the year that there just aren't that many good acting performances. I can't tell you very many I've seen already to be fair. I also thought the cinematography was surprisingly good, and I say surprisingly because McDonagh used a standard Marvel cinematographer. Yes, that means I find Marvel's cinematography boring, because it is.

In the end, it turns out that Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri was a movie I really liked, but I'm not going to be sure if I loved this until a few weeks from now. The scenes with Peter Dinklage took me away from the events a little bit. It's probably one of the best films from 2017, but that lone flaw I found with Dinklage's character is actually really big. The scenes seemed to exist merely to create another revelation. Regardless of that, my standards are not that fucking high. The mystery not being resolved is genuinely no big deal to me, I actually don't care about that. I found it to be quite realistic in pointing out that there's very rarely closure when these things happen, even though news programs would lead someone to feel otherwise. In the case of one in three murders, a killer is never identified. Even more often the killer is never convicted. Even when they are, does someone really get closure? I will say that the dark comedy in this film really hit with me. Seeing burn victims wince at the open flame while they're lighting a cigarette, as well as the other, very numerous crazy things that people say, I was laughing at this. I felt a little guilty at times, but if you didn't find the humor in this, I don't know. What I found I appreciated most about Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, and about Roma last year, or Fences, or The Favourite, or Dunkirk, or Get Out, is that I really couldn't figure out where any of these films were going from one scene to the next. The originality in all of them is something I appreciate. What's so original about Dunkirk, you may ask? It's that on the micro level, Christopher Nolan ensured that his characters could be very easily disposed of, and in many cases they were. That's why Dunkirk is staying at the top of this list and nothing is going to displace it, because doing that with a WW2 movie, I am not going to get over it.

9/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   Get Out
3.   Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
4.   Logan
5.   Wonder Woman
6.   The Big Sick
7.   Thor: Ragnarok
8.   Logan Lucky
9.   The Beguiled
10.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
11.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
12.   The Lost City of Z
13.   First They Killed My Father
14.   Darkest Hour
15.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
16.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
17.   It
18.   Battle of the Sexes
19.   Okja
20.   Kong: Skull Island
21.   It Comes at Night
22.   Split
23.   1922
24.   Personal Shopper
25.   Chuck
26.   Atomic Blonde
27.   Wheelman
28.   The Lego Batman Movie
29.   Megan Leavey
30.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
31.   Menashe
32.   American Made
33.   Beauty and the Beast
34.   Imperial Dreams
35.   Murder on the Orient Express
36.   The Zookeeper's Wife
37.   Free Fire
38.   Win It All
39.   The Wall
40.   Life
41.   Breathe
42.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
43.   Sleight
44.   Alone in Berlin
45.   A United Kingdom
46.   Trespass Against Us
47.   The Mountain Between Us
48.   War Machine
49.   Happy Death Day
50.   Justice League
51.   To the Bone
52.   Wakefield
53.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
54.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
55.   Sand Castle
56.   CHiPs
57.   Death Note
58.   The Belko Experiment
59.   The Great Wall
60.   Fist Fight
61.   Snatched
62.   Wilson
63.   Queen of the Desert
64.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #125 on: March 25, 2019, 06:38:24 PM »


Beirut (2018), directed by Brad Anderson

You know what I was thinking when I turned on Beirut? One thing running through my mind was that I have so much more of 2018 to actually go through, and I'll do that over the next few months. The other thing was that there weren't very many movies that seemed like spy thrillers in 2018. Now that I'm going back through the year, perhaps it's the case that there were more earlier in the year before I started going to the theatre. The other possibility is that studios really took films like The Girl in the Spider's Web and Operation Finale as their entries in the genre. That's not so good! I don't suggest that this film is a classic or anything of the sort, but this genre was really lacking in 2018. Going through my list makes that so much more clear, all there really was of quality was BlacKkKlansman and Mission: Impossible - Fallout. Those were really good movies at least! Beirut, I remember seeing, had some controversy over having a lack of Lebanese characters. This is true, but the film presents Beirut as being a playground for foreign powers. This was, at the time anyway, quite true. Of course, the situation was also far more complicated than any film could attempt to illustrate. So, with that in mind, take Beirut for what it is. I envisoned the film itself as Don Draper moving to Lebanon and becoming a diplomat of some kind. This is not very dissimilar from what the film actually was! In that way, this is probably Jon Hamm's best role on the big screen. In reality, it was Bad Times at the El Royale.

In 1972, Mason Skiles (Jon Hamm) is a diplomat who lives in Beirut with his Lebanese wife, Nadia (Leila Bekhti). When I typed this out, I was wondering about that not being a security risk. Apparently it isn't, and Mason has also taken a 13 year old named Karim (Idir Chender) into his house. Karim is a Palestinian refugee and he says he has no family, but I must admit without any bullshit that this is not true. During Mason's party, while Karim is serving dinner, Mason is met with a visit from his CIA friend, Cal Riley (Mark Pellegrino). It appears that Karim has not been truthful, but Mason has a very hard time believing what he's hearing. Cal tells him that Karim's brother Rafid (Hichame Ouraqa) is a full blown terrorist (is there any other kind) who has participated in the Munich massacre. At the same time, the party is attacked by the aforementioned Rafid, so it turns out Mason should have given him up as soon as possible. In the madness, Rafid and Karim escape with each other, but Nadia is held hostage. Unfortunately, this does not go so well either, and Nadia is killed. I must admit I was confused by how these events played out. It was also surprising, because of the hair and sideburns that Jon Hamm was sporting. He was also so much more happy than usual.

Now, we move forward ten years, to a more familiar version of Jon Hamm. He is an alcoholic who lives in Boston and works as a labor arbitrator, putting his skills as a diplomat to good use. Obviously, his career in the State Department had ended some time before that, and he is quite unhappy in life. We get a glimpse of his life as an arbitrator, it really isn't very fun. While at a bar, he's approached by an old client on behalf of the US goverment. The man tells Mason that he's been requested for an academic lecture at the American University of Beirut. Mason knows something's up because he's not a dumbass, but he's given $6,500 and a first class ticket. When Mason travels to Beirut, he's picked up and dropped off at his hotel, and eventually at the hotel bar, Mason is approached by a woman, Sandy Crowder (Rosamund Pike). It turns out that Sandy is a CIA field officer, and like it or not, Mason will have to come with her to a party at the embassy. At the embassy, Skiles is brought into a room with many govenrment officials, including another higher ranking field officer, Donald Gaines (Dean Norris); a Colonel sitting on the National Security Council, Gary Ruzak (Shea Whigham); and the US Ambassador to Lebanon, Frank Whalen (Larry Pine). They have news Mason probably does not want to hear. His friend Cal was abducted in country and the kidnappers requested Skiles as the negotiator. The kidnapper will not surprise you, and they know what they want. Karim demands his brother Rafid be returned to him, no matter what. If not, he will do something to Cal, and with the groups already circling around Beirut, this is not good. Cal is now a station  and has a whole lot of information that is very valuable to the right buyer.

I probably revealed too much, but I don't know if anyone watches these films based on my recommendations anyway. As I already said, the situation is too complicated to lay out, but when the film moved forward ten years, the Lebanese Civil War had broken out. Beirut is a city that still has a lot of problems to this day, but not like it used to have. Anyway, I don't want to get into that because it's too difficult to explain and I admittedly can't keep track of every detail. In fact, I've always wanted to go somewhere like Beirut even though I probably never will. Anyway, as it relates to this point, I thought Beirut did a decent enough job of having an exposition scene that explained some of what was going on the ground at the time. I expected, as with most of these sorts of films, that there was a possibility a director would be an idiot and just label every part of that city as a warzone of some kind. They did not. With that being the case, I already liked this film more than most in the genre, or rather those centered around the Middle East. There are some disturbing scenes here as well, and it's also a period film, all of which seemed to be done on a budget. The fact is that the two largest roles were cast perfectly, and that this movie was made for them both. Jon Hamm really needed something like this to finally shake my perception of him as only being able to play Don Draper.

The events themselves are quite tense, much more so than I thought they'd be considering that this wasn't a large release. I'm left a bit to wonder why it wasn't. Prisoner trading, and the logistics of such, particularly in a very divided city, is inherently interesting. That much is very clear now. The dialogue between the characters is very good, there's some interesting scenery, and I thought this was a neat story. Boy turned terrorist often is. More than that, it's the interesting dynamics of what everyone's hidden agendas really are, nothing is quite as clear as it seems. I did find some of the balancing acts to be strange though. I was surprised that the film wasn't more choosy in determining who the good and bad guys were, the only statement as to the bad was the generic off-shoot terror group. The film also boasts some very surprising scenes, one of them being a bomb that I wasn't expecting to go off at all. With all that considered, I don't want to make more of this than what it was. It was a good, solid spy movie, there as some genuine intrigue and two good performances. I had some issues with a storyline related to Dean Norris' character that felt horribly hacked into the movie, but besides that, I liked this.

7/10

2018 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Roma
2.   A Star Is Born
3.   First Reformed
4.   The Favourite
5.   Widows
6.   First Man
7.   BlacKkKlansman
8.   Blindspotting
9.   Black Panther
10.   If Beale Street Could Talk
11.   The Sisters Brothers
12.   A Private War
13.   Avengers: Infinity War
14.   Stan & Ollie
15.   Green Book
16.   Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
17.   Mission: Impossible - Fallout
18.   The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
19.   On My Skin
20.   Private Life
21.   Climax
22.   Can You Ever Forgive Me?
23.   Mid90s
24.   Eighth Grade
25.   Sorry to Bother You
26.   Vice
27.   The Old Man & the Gun
28.   Suspiria
29.   Vox Lux
30.   Boy Erased
31.   Bad Times at the El Royale
32.   The Other Side of the Wind
33.   Searching
34.   A Simple Favor
35.   The Hate U Give
36.   Bumblebee
37.   Mary Poppins Returns
38.   Creed II
39.   Hold the Dark
40.   The Land of Steady Habits
41.   Halloween
42.   Ant-Man and the Wasp
43.   Beirut
44.   Mary Queen of Scots
45.   Aquaman
46.   Outlaw King
47.   Overlord
48.   Ben Is Back
49.   Monsters and Men
50.   The Mule
51.   On the Basis of Sex
52.   Bohemian Rhapsody
53.   White Boy Rick 
54.   Papillon
55.   Game Night
56.   Sicario 2: Day of the Soldado
57.   Instant Family
58.   Alpha
59.   The Front Runner
60.   The Predator
61.   Apostle
62.   The Angel
63.   The Commuter
64.   Beautiful Boy
65.   The Nun
66.   Operation Finale
67.   The Equalizer 2
68.   The Spy Who Dumped Me
69.   Bird Box
70.   12 Strong
71.   Venom
72.   Skyscraper
73.   The Meg
74.   Assassination Nation
75.   The Girl in the Spider's Web
76.   The House with a Clock in Its Walls
77.   22 July
78.   Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
79.   The Little Stranger
80.   Tomb Raider
81.   Night School
82.   The 15:17 To Paris
83.   Peppermint
84.   Mile 22
85.   The First Purge
86.   Hunter Killer
87.   Kin
88.   Hell Fest
89.   Proud Mary
90.   Robin Hood
91.   The Happytime Murders
92.   Slender Man


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #126 on: March 26, 2019, 06:26:38 PM »


The Shape of Water (2017), directed by Guillermo del Toro

Did I ever think I would sitting here writing a review about a movie that featured a woman fucking a fish man? The answer is obviously not, but The Shape of Water is so much more than that. How is it? This is a film you may need to watch in order to understand that, but if you don't want to watch this, I have some explaining to do. This is a film that goes so far beyond what I would expect someone to make of this kind of movie, with touches from del Toro that are nearly entirely unexpected. I do not know how it is that I never had the film's ending spoiled for me. I'm very glad that it wasn't. From score to setting, to plot, to costumes, this really is what people said it was. Something I don't understand though, is how Michael Shannon received no recognition for this performance? That doesn't make any sense. In any case, I'm thinking about more than that after watching this, I'm stunned by the production itself. I cannot understand how this was accomplished, how they managed to make the fish man look decent, all of those things. Is this what happens when someone makes the movie they really want to without anything getting in their way? There's an easy answer to that question, but the film itself leaves so many other things in question. You know what else? The way in which del Toro blended so many aspects of 1960s society cohesively into the film without it feeling goofy or preachy, that's yet another of this film's many accomplishments.

Elisa Esposito (Sally Hawkins) is a mute woman living in Baltimore, she lives in apartment that rests above a cinema. Elisa is also mute, incapable of making sound, and has one neighbor, a closeted man named Gerald Giles (Richard Jenkins). There are hints that Giles was fired from his advertising job over matters related to his sexuality, he needs that second chance and has been continuing to draw ads for what seems to be a side project. Giles also serves as an interpreter for Elisa, who uses American Sign Language to communicate. Elisa herself works at a secret government laboratory, and with this being during the Cold War, before a man went into space I should add, secret laboratory means VERY secret. Given this situation, I should also point out what Elisa's job is, she works as a janitor. Zelda (Octavia Spencer) is her only friend at this job, and she also interprets for Elisa. Things are easier for Elisa than they are for many people, but her lack of voice comes from some scratch marks that are on her neck. They've been there since she was young. One day, the facility garners a new asset, captured from the Amazon by a Colonel, Richard Strickland (Michael Shannon). Strickland is in charge of handling the asset, the only person he reports to being a five star general. The asset itself is to be studied to see what advantages the Americans may gain over the Soviets in the Space Race.

Did you already figure out what the asset is? This is the Amphibian Man (Doug Jones), who is amphibious as you may guess. Dr. Hoffstetler (Michael Stuhlbarg) is supposed to study the creature and figure out what it may do for the country, but there's a catch, the doctor is really named Dimitri and he is not an American. Elisa is tasked with regularly cleaning the lab, one notable incident coming after Strickland has some of his fingers chewed off. In the meantime, we learn some things about Strickland's family, their place in the world, and about Giles. Giles fails to connect with anyone both in a professional and business manner, this leads to he and Elisa becoming much closer. Elisa herself becomes close with the Amphibian Man over time. We learn that he can communicate with her, that he isn't some savage creature, and who knows? He just may be a god-like being. Unfortunately, Strickland hates this creature and is intent on having it vivisected, but Dimitri disagrees with this. Dimitri reports back to his Soviet bosses and they don't tell him anything good, that he must delay the procedure by a week or kill the Amphibian Man himself. Meanwhile, Elisa did overhear the order from Strickland. Surely, she will do something, even though she's just a cleaning girl. Right?

The way these stories change from discovery science-fiction, to heist movie, to romance, to musical, to fantasy; and not necessarily in that order, it all speaks for itself. There's so much going on here and it's no surprise The Shape of Water is such a beloved film. I never would have expected this from a film with the content it has. If you describe any one part of this film to someone, it might sound like it's trash, but it isn't. There are moments here that surprised me quite a bit, even though I was expecting fish dick that never came. I'm now confused as to how that became a meme in the first place. Of course, there's stuff here that isn't for everyone, this is certainly a fairy tale of sorts, but I think that way of phrasing matters doesn't do the film justice. Guillermo del Toro also has a lot of projects that he's been sitting on, ones which he hasn't made or been able to get anyone to finance, and I'm wondering if more of them are as good as this. That's a question we need to see the answer to at some point. The performances themselves are excellent, with Hawkins and Shannon as the major standouts. Shannon is naturally drawn to these roles, but this is even better than what he did in Boardwalk Empire. Learning sign language on Hawkins' part, that's HARD. Major credit for doing that.

From a technical perspective, the film is a delight, with some surprising uses of color. Now I'm really confused about how this cinematographer went on to film Proud Mary. That makes no fucking sense at all. The lighting and all that just does not look real, and there are copious close-ups on the very evil Michael Shannon, which is what a film should have when the story is this naturally intense. I know I have complained about bad close-ups before, but the difference is that some of them are poor framing when we really need to see more than someone's exasperated, sweaty face. As far as the score goes, I think I'm going to be the guy who says that I don't like Alexandre Desplat's scores as a whole. However, this one has some neat touches and feels like a 1950s score for a movie set at sea. That was obviously the point. So, that's another bonus. I can't explain what makes a good score but I know what sounds good to me and what doesn't. The set design here is also completely ridiculous, nothing being topped by the room in which the Amphibian Man is housed for half the film. You just don't get much better than that. The costume of the creature, that could have been much worse. That's very difficult to get right, considering the costume here actually has to walk and stuff. I'm also drawn back to something del Toro said about shooting this in black and white, that would have been a mistake and his film wouldn't really be what it is if that had been done.

Now, obviously, the juxtaposition of disenfranchised groups going up against a crazy government backed white guy, that's not lost on me at all. It is, however, I think not what I find to be the best aspects of the film. As you guys may know, I am heavily drawn to technical achievements. First Man, Roma, Dunkirk have all been excellent in this way over the last few years, and now that I've seen the movie, I can add The Shape of Water to that list. I'm really big on this stuff. In years where there's no obvious films with technical mastery, it is very strange for there to then be years with multiple films that boast that. I did largely finish 2016 and am left with the mindset that it was a film lacking those huge technical achievements, with the exception of some scenes in Arrival. Then, the last two years we have quite a lot. I'm big on that, I love that shit. The love story itself though, that's the real winner here. Once again we have a victory for originality, I'm unable to compare this to something else when I take the conclusion of the film into account as well. Overall, I'm glad I shoved this into my list and watched it instead of waiting a few more months, that would have been stupid. Go get you something as good as that fish dick was for Elisa, we all deserve it.

9.5/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   The Shape of Water
3.   Get Out
4.   Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
5.   Logan
6.   Wonder Woman
7.   The Big Sick
8.   Thor: Ragnarok
9.   Logan Lucky
10.   The Beguiled
11.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
12.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
13.   The Lost City of Z
14.   First They Killed My Father
15.   Darkest Hour
16.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
17.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
18.   It
19.   Battle of the Sexes
20.   Okja
21.   Kong: Skull Island
22.   It Comes at Night
23.   Split
24.   1922
25.   Personal Shopper
26.   Chuck
27.   Atomic Blonde
28.   Wheelman
29.   The Lego Batman Movie
30.   Megan Leavey
31.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
32.   Menashe
33.   American Made
34.   Beauty and the Beast
35.   Imperial Dreams
36.   Murder on the Orient Express
37.   The Zookeeper's Wife
38.   Free Fire
39.   Win It All
40.   The Wall
41.   Life
42.   Breathe
43.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
44.   Sleight
45.   Alone in Berlin
46.   A United Kingdom
47.   Trespass Against Us
48.   The Mountain Between Us
49.   War Machine
50.   Happy Death Day
51.   Justice League
52.   To the Bone
53.   Wakefield
54.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
55.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
56.   Sand Castle
57.   CHiPs
58.   Death Note
59.   The Belko Experiment
60.   The Great Wall
61.   Fist Fight
62.   Snatched
63.   Wilson
64.   Queen of the Desert
65.   Sleepless


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #127 on: March 26, 2019, 06:28:06 PM »
By the way I have a lot of trash next month to make up for watching all this good stuff.


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Harley Quinn

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #128 on: March 26, 2019, 11:27:30 PM »
By the way I have a lot of trash next month to make up for watching all this good stuff.

I eagerly anticipate the trash heap you'll be spelunking!

Offline AA484

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #129 on: March 26, 2019, 11:59:33 PM »
I never even noticed the "disenfranchised group of minorities vs. evil white man" until people brought it up after.  I guess I'm normal (or dense)?

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #130 on: March 27, 2019, 10:21:06 AM »


Gloria Bell (2019), directed by Sebastian Leilo

Did anyone think I was going to swerve what so obviously felt like a movie for women? Fuck no, I'm built for this shit. After going to see Gloria Bell today, I am left to wonder how many directors have made remakes of their own films. There admittedly aren't too many of those coming to mind at this point, and in looking at the Wikipedia page for Gloria, this looks like a nearly exact remake. I saw that this was called a reimagining, but I don't think so. The question here is whether or not a direct English-language remake has artistic merit? Obviously, there's commercial merit because a lot of people in this country will not watch foreign movies as they don't like to read subtitles. Artistically, I actually do think there's merit in this. You know why? This story is one of the better personal films in recent memory with a female lead. I have read that this was more than a remake as basically every scene was exactly the same, but I don't see much problem with that either. My only problem with Gloria Bell is the way the film ends. Regardless of said ending being a tad bit flat, I think it's clear from my earlier comments that I really enjoyed the film. Now, that all being said, I wonder how I'd feel if I watched the original. In any case, I did not expect that Julianne Moore would still be doing nude scenes at her age, but looking like she does, then I understood why. Just giving people a reason to watch this if they don't already have one.

Gloria Bell (Julianne Moore) is a divorcee, living her life on her own, no matter what may come of it. Gloria's children are all grown up, and this film starts with Gloria going to dance clubs inhabited by other people her age, or in some cases rather older. If you want to see Julianne Moore singing in the car, this is your film. Gloria lives in Los Angeles, so it's fair to say there are a lot of single people her age in the area. She works as an insurance adjuster downtown, her kids Anne (Caren Pistorius) and Peter (Michael Cera) have their own thing going on. Anne is dating a surfer from Sweden, Peter is taking care of his son while his wife/girlfriend is off in the desert trying to find herself, or whatever idiots do. There are some funny comments made about this situation as time goes on, but it is what it is. Unfortunately, I realized some things about my own self while watching this, as when Gloria was talking to Peter, I realized how disappointing it is when your grown kid is not entirely paying attention to you and is more focused on their phone. Gloria is also occupied by some situations at home even though she lives alone, with her neighbor in the midst of a major mental breakdown and screaming loud enough for Gloria to hear everything, as well as a hairless cat constantly finding ways to get inside her house. Eventually she keeps the cat, which is what I would do too.

After some scenes where we continue to set up more of Gloria's life, and that she has a mother (Holland Taylor) who is now a widow, we get to move forward with the story. Enter Arnold (John Turturro). Gloria meets Arnold at a dance club, they hit it off almost instantly. When they go back to Gloria's house, some funny stuff happens that you'll have to watch the film to see, and I won't spoil it either. In the days following Gloria's night with Arnold, they contact each other again and go on a date. At the date, we learn that Arnold has been divorced for one year and Gloria for twelve, and that Arnold has two daughters who are heavily dependent on him. They are 27 and 31, but that doesn't matter, and Arnold excuses this as just how they are. When they call, he will answer and do what they tell him. That's just how it is. Gloria, by contrast, is very independent and will not do that. Things still go well, at least that is, until it's time for Arnold to tell his family about Gloria. He will not. That's obviously fishy, and Gloria realizes that too, this is no dummy situation we have here. Eventually, Gloria decides to take Arnold to her son's birthday party. At the birthday party, there's her ex-husband Dustin (Brad Garrett), who Gloria hasn't seen in four years now. Dustin is remarried to Fiona (Jeanne Tripplehorn), and Anne is there too. This situation is where things don't go so well, and I'll leave it at that. Let's just say this was one of the most awkward sequences I've seen in a while.

That sequence being as awkward as it was, I thought that really made the film. There's no amount of words I can use to describe the level of cringe I had here. I thought that overall, this movie was really sweet and that I found myself sympathizing with the lead character more than I thought possible when I went to see this. Julianne Moore, I don't even know what to say at this point. I know she's been in things that aren't good, but I have either not watched them, or I have and they've been deleted from my mind. She is one of the very best screen performers from this or any other country, that's for sure. Her ability to make this character to easy to understand, to feel like a real person, that's something a lot of actors just can't do. As a result, when good things happen it feels good to the audience, and when bad things happen you really feel those too. What I was thinking was that other than the copious amount of nude scenes, this would be a nice movie to watch with my mom. Copious is also not an overexaggeration. I thought the lack of melodrama was also fresh, the characters all stayed true to themselves, and that we didn't get any bizarre inclusions into the story that other films often have when attempting to tell a tale like this one. That's what separates the wheat from the chaff. I nearly messed up and didn't say anything about John Turturro's performance, which I also thought was quite strong.

I think one of the aspects that appears to be prevalent in the remake is that the director decided to cut out characters he thought were unnecessary. I do think there's an inherent issue with remaking a story that's already been told, but if you haven't seen Gloria, this remains an original story. The ending, I will say, is not exactly what I would have wanted and I found it to be a bit weird. It shows that life continues on, that's what I thought of it anyway. In any case, I think this is a uniquely strong film. Often, these kinds of films spend too much attention on the family members of the woman, but there aren't even that many of these movies anyway. Instead, things are changed to where Gloria is literally the entire focus of the film, every scene has Gloria in it, and there's absolutely no exception to that. I really, really liked this and I'm going to give it a high rating. The use of color and the score are also exceptional, and for that matter so is the choice in music from the past. One thing I found a little weird is that I'm getting to a point where I enjoy stories like this more than seeing some guy with a gun go crazy on some terrorists. Perhaps that's just part of growing up. If you watch this and don't like it, I don't know what to say about your taste. Fuck you guys, I guess.

8.5/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Us
2.   Gloria Bell
3.   Arctic
4.   High Flying Bird
5.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
6.   Captain Marvel
7.   Paddleton
8.   Cold Pursuit
9.   Happy Death Day 2U
10.   Greta
11.   Triple Frontier
12.   Fighting with My Family
13.   The Dirt
14.   Velvet Buzzsaw
15.   Alita: Battle Angel
16.   The Kid
17.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
18.   The Upside
19.   Captive State
20.   Escape Room
21.   What Men Want
22.   Miss Bala
23.   Glass
24.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
25.   The Prodigy
26.   Polar
27.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #131 on: March 27, 2019, 06:18:14 PM »
Told you guys about balance...



All Eyez on Me (2017), directed by Benny Boom

The picture posted above brings a very obvious question. Is a film good enough just because the actor is someone who looks exactly like the subject? The answer, obviously, is that it isn't. All Eyez on Me is one of the worst films I've watched in a while, bad enough that I didn't even want to write this. There are some easy explanations why the film is that bad though, this probably won't be a long review even though this film rings in at 135 minutes before the credits. So, obviously, this is very long. Obviously, I am telling everyone here they should not waste their time. Anything you may have hoped to be in a Tupac biopic is not here, and what there is, is filmed in a way that isn't very interesting at all. I'm left with the strongest feelings of frustration when it comes to All Eyez on Me, so much of what's here also feels like fiction due to how lazily the film was made. I think this feels like someone thinking they could make a film like Straight Outta Compton, but they had no talent with which they could do so. Of course, due to that lack of ingenuity, I was left super bored, and matters only got worse as the film went on. Did you ever think that a movie would film the death of Tupac, end a film there, and have no real insights about it at all. That's what we get.

Starting off with a sequence of scenes that takes us to four different places in Tupac's (Demetrius Shipp) life. We open with Tupac in prison after being convicted of illegal touching, and Tupac is being interviewed. Subsequently, parts of this story are told through flashback. First up, we see Tupac's very young childhood, with his mother Afeni (Danai Gurira) being acquitted of a supposed attempt to carry out bombings in New York. After that, we move forward again, with his step-father Mutulu (Jamie Hector) attempting to avoid capture by the FBI on murder charges. In this case, it would seem that Mutulu actually committed the crimes he was accused of. Eventually, Tupac sees a failed FBI raid on his house, and he also moves to Baltimore, where he meets Jada Pinkett (Kat Graham). This narrative is super fragmented, but after this scene, Afeni then sends Tupac to Oakland. I can't tell you what's going on here because I swear she said she wasn't coming, but in the next scene, she's buying crack from a dealer in Oakland. I cannot easily piece together this narrative at all. We go from scenes where Tupac has joined Digital Underground, to leaving the group just as fast. None of this, and I really mean none of it, makes any sense at all. People like Leila Steinberg (Lauren Cohan) go straight in and straight out of the film. It's a joke. Eventually, Tupac does settle on a constant manager, Atron Gregory (Keith Robinson).

I don't know how to properly address the second part of this usual wrap-up. We're shown pieces of Tupac acting in movies like Juice, performing with Biggie (Jamal Woolard), and how he wound up in jail again. We're shown him signing with Death Row, with a good performance from the actor playing Suge Knight (Dominic L. Santana). We also see some collaborations with Snopp Dogg (Jarrett Ellis), some scenes with Kidada Jones (Annie Ilonzeh), and eventually we circle back to Jada Pinkett. What I can tell you is that this film is really shitty.

I just, I don't know man, I can't actually review this. I've never been more disappointed in a movie about a subject I felt like there needed to be a movie about. The film is so badly directed, other than Demetrius Shipp making an electric Tupac, none of this shit really feels real. I don't know how this film cost so much to make or even how it got released. There's a massive audience for a movie like this, or at least there was. That shit is dead and buried now. There's no focus here at all, and no montages at all. It turns out that because of that, the film is very long. This movie doesn't even get a clip of Tupac filming the 'California Love' video? Fuck this movie bro. I don't want to waste more of my time talking about it, and you DEFINITELY shouldn't waste any of your time watching it. This was horrendous. You know why it's going last on my list? Fucking up an original story is one thing, but to fuck up the story of someone with a massive legacy, that's very hard to do. There was no story at all.

2.5/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   The Shape of Water
3.   Get Out
4.   Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
5.   Logan
6.   Wonder Woman
7.   The Big Sick
8.   Thor: Ragnarok
9.   Logan Lucky
10.   The Beguiled
11.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
12.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
13.   The Lost City of Z
14.   First They Killed My Father
15.   Darkest Hour
16.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
17.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
18.   It
19.   Battle of the Sexes
20.   Okja
21.   Kong: Skull Island
22.   It Comes at Night
23.   Split
24.   1922
25.   Personal Shopper
26.   Chuck
27.   Atomic Blonde
28.   Wheelman
29.   The Lego Batman Movie
30.   Megan Leavey
31.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
32.   Menashe
33.   American Made
34.   Beauty and the Beast
35.   Imperial Dreams
36.   Murder on the Orient Express
37.   The Zookeeper's Wife
38.   Free Fire
39.   Win It All
40.   The Wall
41.   Life
42.   Breathe
43.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
44.   Sleight
45.   Alone in Berlin
46.   A United Kingdom
47.   Trespass Against Us
48.   The Mountain Between Us
49.   War Machine
50.   Happy Death Day
51.   Justice League
52.   To the Bone
53.   Wakefield
54.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
55.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
56.   Sand Castle
57.   CHiPs
58.   Death Note
59.   The Belko Experiment
60.   The Great Wall
61.   Fist Fight
62.   Snatched
63.   Wilson
64.   Queen of the Desert
65.   Sleepless
66.   All Eyez on Me


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Avid Warehouse Enthusiast

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #132 on: March 28, 2019, 03:09:58 AM »
I find it funny they cast somebody to play Jada Pinkett when Jada Pinkett has barely aged in the last 30 years as it is.

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #133 on: March 28, 2019, 08:48:33 AM »
I find it funny they cast somebody to play Jada Pinkett when Jada Pinkett has barely aged in the last 30 years as it is.

It was because they completely fabricated nearly everything with "Jada" in it. This movie made Bohemian Rhapsody feel like the Goodfellas of music biopics. If not for the Tupac performance I would have given it a 1.


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #134 on: March 28, 2019, 06:03:46 PM »


Unsane (2018), directed by Steven Soderbergh

Once the credits were rolling for Unsane, I was thinking that there's really only one filmmaker who would have ever tried to make a movie like this and weave these things together. Of course, this is what Unsane really had to be after all. I did make the mistake of watching this after High Flying Bird, Unsane being when Soderbergh was actually testing out the process of filming with an iPhone. There are some major problems in comparison to this year's film, enough that I want to talk about them first. The picture quality is really bad, and when the camera is moving quickly, the problems are even more noticeable than in High Flying Bird. To say the picture quality is bad is an understatement, it's actively distracting. In the dark hallways of a mental hospital, it's actually quite rough to follow. With that being said, Unsane brings so much to the table. I really do mean so much. I will probably spoil over the course of this review, so be warned if you choose to read it. I know a lot of people won't see what I'm seeing here, because this film also does have problems beyond the filming quality, with Claire Foy's accent being chiefly among them. She slipped out of it a few times and I certainly noticed. I do think another criticism is that Unsane presents itself as a horror movie, but it isn't actually scary. Never mind that, that's never mattered to me before and it doesn't now. Everyone disagrees on some things.

Sawyer Valentini (Claire Foy) has a very bad name, but the film isn't really about that, she is troubled. She has moved away from Boston to escape a stalker, but the triggering in her life is still pretty bad. When she goes on a Tinder date, she tells the guy that he'll be able to fuck her, but that he should never contact her again. They get back to her place and start kissing, but she freaks the fuck out and locks herself in the bathroom. The guy leaves like everyeone in that situation should do. Afterwards, she calls her mother Angela (Amy Irving) and we get some insights, and later on she goes to a facility called Highland Creek so she can talk about her problems. During the appointment with the counselor, she talks about her thoughts of suicide as a way of escaping being stalked. The stalker? A man named David, this thing haunts Sawyer as much as something possibly could. While at the appointment, she signs some papers without reading all of them, she thought she was going to get extra counseling. Wrong. Instead of getting extra counseling, she has signed herself up for a 24 hour hold, this was a massive mistake. When she tries to call the police, she's dismissed because officers frequently get these calls and nobody believes them. So, basically, she's stuck.

At night, Sawyer is brought to a room with Nate (Jay Pharoah), Violet (Juno Temple), and Jacob (Raul Castillo). Jacob is kind of a creepy guy, and Violet is straight out crazy. Violet threatens to cut Sawyer's hair off with a shiv, which leads to Sawyer trying to leave. When Jacob approaches her, she knees him in the nuts. Then, when the door opens, Sawyer sees an orderly who triggers her. She slaps the fuck out of him, then is restrained and sedated. After this incident, Sawyer sees the doctor, who tells her that now she has to stay there all week and take medication. Sawyer subsequently learns that Nate has hidden a cell phone somehow, and that he speaks to an unknown person on the other end. The thing is, Nate seems to believe Sawyer and decides to let her use his phone. When she does, she calls her mom, who travels down from Boston to confront the administrator. Here's the thing. Nate is convinced that the entire mental facility is an insurance scam where they run game on convincing insurance companies that the person is not well. The facility then collects for a week and drops them. Nate is absolutely convinced of this shit, he's not going to let it go. Here's the other thing. Sawyer's stalker? She's convinced that he's at the hospital. The orderly's name is George Shaw (Joshua Leonard), the stalker's name is David. Stalker-ish things are shown to the audience as coming from George, but are they really happening?

The twists and turns of this story really work for me, and I say that only Soderbergh would have made this because the events are infused with corporate malfeasance. He loves that shit, so do I, and that's part of why I liked this so much. What's crazy is that all scams like this are now ignored because people largely don't want to know about them, but they do happen. I also really liked the presentation of the film as being a MeToo story. I haven't seen all that many of those in the time since the movement started, or at least nothing I'd classify as really being one. Unsane presents the argument that maybe people should believe women when they're telling their stories, because very often they're true. No shit, right? Other than Foy's occasional accent problem, this film is very well cast. Everyone slides seamlessly into their role, and incel in Unsane is the very picture of an incel. It's uncanny. There's also a great cameo and you can probably figure out who it is. The games this film plays with perspective kept me wondering what was actually real for longer than I really should have. Of course, when a movie goes down this route, there are also going to be issues with pacing once those revelations come to light. So, I reiterate, I like this despite it being a flawed film.

The flaws are easy to ignore because I enjoyed the story so much, and despite all those flaws I was left reacting to practically everything. I won't say this is a masterpiece or anything, but even though there are failings in the filming technology, there are also successes in the direction. The hallways are very well lit, and the quality of the picture makes things look like something from an era gone by. Unsane is also nicely edited, and I found myself thinking that some of the presentations of the mental hospital were like the stories I've been told by someone I know. I should ask them if they've seen the movie, but I don't want to make anyone mad. The beginning of the film also works for me as we dive straight into the events without very much buildup, and it turned out this was a story that didn't need build. I also appreciated the ending. For our lead character to have gone through all that and have remained entirely untreated, certainly to never seek treatment once again, now that's a good story. Of course, man, if you aren't ready for ridiculous, you are turning on the wrong movie. This also isn't a horror movie as the marketing suggests, so in that way it fails, but it succeeds in most every other. I'm glad Soderbergh didn't retire and I'm glad that he's going to continue to do weird shit like this as long as he can get financing. Netflix, you know what to do.

7.5/10

2018 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Roma
2.   A Star Is Born
3.   First Reformed
4.   The Favourite
5.   Widows
6.   First Man
7.   BlacKkKlansman
8.   Blindspotting
9.   Black Panther
10.   If Beale Street Could Talk
11.   The Sisters Brothers
12.   A Private War
13.   Avengers: Infinity War
14.   Stan & Ollie
15.   Green Book
16.   Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
17.   Mission: Impossible - Fallout
18.   The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
19.   On My Skin
20.   Private Life
21.   Climax
22.   Can You Ever Forgive Me?
23.   Mid90s
24.   Eighth Grade
25.   Sorry to Bother You
26.   Vice
27.   The Old Man & the Gun
28.   Suspiria
29.   Vox Lux
30.   Boy Erased
31.   Bad Times at the El Royale
32.   The Other Side of the Wind
33.   Searching
34.   A Simple Favor
35.   The Hate U Give
36.   Unsane
37.   Bumblebee
38.   Mary Poppins Returns
39.   Creed II
40.   Hold the Dark
41.   The Land of Steady Habits
42.   Halloween
43.   Ant-Man and the Wasp
44.   Beirut
45.   Mary Queen of Scots
46.   Aquaman
47.   Outlaw King
48.   Overlord
49.   Ben Is Back
50.   Monsters and Men
51.   The Mule
52.   On the Basis of Sex
53.   Bohemian Rhapsody
54.   White Boy Rick 
55.   Papillon
56.   Game Night
57.   Sicario 2: Day of the Soldado
58.   Instant Family
59.   Alpha
60.   The Front Runner
61.   The Predator
62.   Apostle
63.   The Angel
64.   The Commuter
65.   Beautiful Boy
66.   The Nun
67.   Operation Finale
68.   The Equalizer 2
69.   The Spy Who Dumped Me
70.   Bird Box
71.   12 Strong
72.   Venom
73.   Skyscraper
74.   The Meg
75.   Assassination Nation
76.   The Girl in the Spider's Web
77.   The House with a Clock in Its Walls
78.   22 July
79.   Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
80.   The Little Stranger
81.   Tomb Raider
82.   Night School
83.   The 15:17 To Paris
84.   Peppermint
85.   Mile 22
86.   The First Purge
87.   Hunter Killer
88.   Kin
89.   Hell Fest
90.   Proud Mary
91.   Robin Hood
92.   The Happytime Murders
93.   Slender Man


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #135 on: March 29, 2019, 06:04:47 PM »


A Ghost Story (2017), directed by David Lowery

The first few scenes after I'd turned on A Ghost Story, I was thinking that anyone else who did so better have has some patience. I was also thinking towards the end of the film that Terrence Malick would probably have appreciated this very much. It's going to prove very difficult for me to describe A Ghost Story because it is what it is, it's completely opposite from everything else that gets made. I have heard from some people that they hated this, that is their prerogative although I do not understand. I did understand the point of the film, and I did find it to be an effective presentation in making one thing about love, loss, and time. That isn't to say I think this is a great film because I'm not going to go that far. I will admit that I found the film to be a little too slow, but regardless of that, there's enough here that I'm going to be thinking about the film for a while. That scene full of gas station philosophy, that's exactly what the events needed, and that may be what sticks with me more than anything else. There are bonus points to be had for the film remaining small in scope, that's for sure.

A Ghost Story is a film with an easy explanation. A musician (Casey Affleck) lives in a crappy house with his wife (Rooney Mara) in Dallas. She wants to move because the house sucks and he does not. One night, there's a sound on the piano they cannot find the origin of, it is what it is. Shortly after, the husband is killed in a car accident outside. At the hospital, the wife sees the body. The man subsequently awakens as a ghost covered in the sheet, and wanders back to the house. The ghost is tied to the house. He sees things he does not want to see, he has no choice. Time passes on slowly, only becoming recognizable to the ghost when there is activity. That's all I want to say about the progression of the story.

The sadness once the husband dies, I tried to find some humor in it but I also found the key scenes to be quite profound. I had visions of seeing people run out of the theater instead of watch the film to its conclusion. The cinematography and the score are both fantastic, there aren't enough words for the quality of the score. I decided to turn on the Knight of Cups score, which was similarly excellent, and I just how realized exactly how similar these two films are. One is better than the other because it makes far more sense, but I think everyone who has seen both films can point out those little intricacies. Again, I have said before that I do not have the ability to recognize music to an extent where I could tell you why the scores are similar, I simply know that they are. As far as production goes, I am also very impressed by the way Casey Affleck was able to move around in that sheet while using hints like posture to give some kind of insight as to what the ghost's emotions were. I thought this was a little disturbing actually. The idea of being trapped in a space for the duration of time until a point at which you can depart that space, that sounds awful. When the YouTube life advice doofus starts talking about our mortality, this scene works as subtle exposition. It's a great scene.

The tiny budget does become apparent when staging set pieces, like Casey Affleck's death, but I don't think this is much of a big deal at all. The film is well cast, even when things move...beyond...buut I don't think A Ghost Story is really about something like that. It's about life and death, about things that people remember and don't, about the importance of moments in one's life that someone won't forget. That's what we're shown by the ghost, that's what I took away from the events. I do also think that the film becomes more interesting once we move forward to different scenarios. The scene where Rooney Mara eats pie makes for difficult viewing. Overall, I don't know if there's much more I can say about this other than that the film made me think. A Ghost Story could have been totally ridiculous and stupid, but I didn't think that it was, and that the film was quite engaging once the early scenes were over with. But, make no mistake, this is a very odd film and some patience is required should someone decide to watch it. If you don't have it, don't bother. There are people who liked this much more than me too!

I nearly posted this before addressing something I had to, but I should point out that when I realized the ghost had supernatural powers, that took me out of the film a little bit. When I think about all the scenes that followed this, particularly the one where the ghost is floating through grass or the construction shown in the image above, that supernatural stuff really feels out of place. The piano scene is acceptable but the rest is not, from my point of view.

7.5/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   The Shape of Water
3.   Get Out
4.   Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
5.   Logan
6.   Wonder Woman
7.   The Big Sick
8.   Thor: Ragnarok
9.   Logan Lucky
10.   The Beguiled
11.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
12.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
13.   The Lost City of Z
14.   First They Killed My Father
15.   Darkest Hour
16.   A Ghost Story
17.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
18.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
19.   It
20.   Battle of the Sexes
21.   Okja
22.   Kong: Skull Island
23.   It Comes at Night
24.   Split
25.   1922
26.   Personal Shopper
27.   Chuck
28.   Atomic Blonde
29.   Wheelman
30.   The Lego Batman Movie
31.   Megan Leavey
32.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
33.   Menashe
34.   American Made
35.   Beauty and the Beast
36.   Imperial Dreams
37.   Murder on the Orient Express
38.   The Zookeeper's Wife
39.   Free Fire
40.   Win It All
41.   The Wall
42.   Life
43.   Breathe
44.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
45.   Sleight
46.   Alone in Berlin
47.   A United Kingdom
48.   Trespass Against Us
49.   The Mountain Between Us
50.   War Machine
51.   Happy Death Day
52.   Justice League
53.   To the Bone
54.   Wakefield
55.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
56.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
57.   Sand Castle
58.   CHiPs
59.   Death Note
60.   The Belko Experiment
61.   The Great Wall
62.   Fist Fight
63.   Snatched
64.   Wilson
65.   Queen of the Desert
66.   Sleepless
67.   All Eyez on Me


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #136 on: March 30, 2019, 06:37:05 PM »


Dumbo (2019), directed by Tim Burton

Here's the thing about this year's Dumbo movie. I absolutely hate Tim Burton. His style has always bothered me, and truthfully I can't even say which of his films was the last one I liked. I don't even know. With that in mind, I went into Dumbo with guarded thoughts, even though I was looking forward to seeing how some of these actors would be used I also thought Dumbo would be a gauge of how receptive people will eventually be to all these live-action Disney remakes. I was surprised this was made so quickly as part of that project, to be honest. I thought Dumbo was one of the absolute hardest films they could have adapted, and I think after watching this that my feelings are somewhat vindicated. Again, I do not like Tim Burton, but he's not the largest problem with Dumbo. I do think that Dumbo will make some money, but in the end it may actually not be that much. There's a reason for this. The screenplay is not very good, and this doesn't stay true to what Dumbo is actually supposed to be. Instead, it's imagined as being something else, which has strengths as well as weaknesses, but I don't really like this. It turns out that I do want the Disney remakes to stay extremely true to what they are, and that when you throw the talking mouse out of the picture, this was never going to be as unique as the original. I'm not saying I want talking Jim Crows, but you know, I wanted something more.

It's after World War I, and we are presented with the picture of a traveling circus which is currently in Sarasota. The Medici Brothers Circus is run by Max Medici (Danny DeVito), who apparently does not have a brother. Returning home from the war is a veteran and equestrian performer, Holt Farrier (Colin Farrell). While Holt was gone, he lost his arm in the war, and in addition to that his wife has died. His children Milly (Nico Parker) and Joe (Finley Hobbins) have been guarded over by the circus in Holt's absence, something which he is appreciative of. Milly is a girl who is interested in science and Joe is a nice kid, these kids are the most cookie-cutter characters in the history of Disney movies. It felt like they were literally only there because Disney mandated there be children in the movie who helped Dumbo. Speaking of Dumbo, let's address the rest of the circus. They have a snake charmer, Pramesh (Roshan Seth); a strong guy, Rongo the Strongo (DeObia Oparei); a "mermaid", Miss Atlantis (Sharon Rooney); and a few other assorted people you'd expect to see on a circus. More than anything else though, there's Medici and his monkey. In the midst of financial difficulties, Medici has been forced to sell Holt's act, the circus horses. Holt is subsequently reassigned as a caretaker for elephants, which he really doesn't like.

There are a few elephants in the Medici Circus, but most important among them is the pregnant elephant, Jumbo. I'm gonna skip over a ton of stuff to avoid spoiling the movie. As you may know, Jumbo gives birth to an elephant with huge ears. Medici is afraid of this because he thinks nobody will want to see the new act, so he demands that the ears are covered. They do not stay covered, which leads to the elephant being given the name of Dumbo, and an accident. This accident is pretty bad, so Jumbo and Dumbo are separated. When the kids are comforting Dumbo, they learn that Dumbo's ears are so big he can fly as a result of flapping them. Dumbo is able to do so because feathers trigger this ability in Dumbo, and this leads to Dumbo actually flying during a show. I'm leaving out so much of the story here for the purposes of not spoiling the film, but I will spoil this part because these people are in the trailer. After word spreads, Medici is approached by the owner of an amusement park in New York City, it is called Dreamland. The owner is V.A. Vandevere (Michael Keaton), he presents himself as the king of the circus business. Colette (Eva Green) is a French trapeze artist, and Vandevere has a plan. He wants to partner up with Medici and create a show where Dumbo can fly with Colette on his back, an insane idea if I've ever heard of one.

Spoilers below.

One of the many differences between this Dumbo story and the other one, beyond the talking animals, is that this is a Disney film that oddly rails against the idea of there being a Disney in the first place. I don't know if that's what Tim Burton intended as he's made tons of money from Disney in the past, but that's what I saw here. I do think Burton is a hack, and a lot of this film works to support that opinion. To take this story and be unable to play with my emotions in the least is really bizarre. My brother was telling me that he didn't want to see this because the cartoon was something he found sad, well, this isn't sad at all. I felt nothing when the film was over. The only emotions I felt were in the first half of the film when Frank Reynolds was dominating the proceedings of a circus. This? Give me all of this. I was smiling the entire time this was happening and I think most people here would be too. The problem is that Vandevere is a representation of Disney and also of Donald Trump, which feels really weird while watching this? There's a scene where he doesn't get his way, doesn't understand the consequences of what happens when he doesn't listen, and goes full Trump. This was all I could think of as the film was closing. I also don't know who had the bright idea for Disney to make a film where a tiny circus is absorbed a conglomerate, the conglomerate subsequently lays off all the absorbed workers and keeps the animal captive that they deem to have the most value? This is extremely weird, but I did like this even though I'm not sure that was supposed to be the intention. The final shots of the film indicate that it wasn't. So, Tim Burton is simply a stupid hack.

With all that in mind, and what I'm telling you about this film being unable to garner real emotional attachment, it shouldn't surprise anyone here that I think this is a really average film. There are some moments of inspiration even after DeVito's character takes a back seat, one of them being a very large parade, and the aforementioned final shots as well. I also thought this was a visual feast, which is pretty much the only thing Tim Burton really brings to the table at this point. It may not surprise you that this film has an Oscar winning production designer, Rick Heinrichs, and he probably deserves more of the credit than Burton for any of this. He has also worked on most of Burton's films in one capacity or another. I rarely think to give credit for down the line crew, but I think this guy did a great job. I think that overall, there's some attachment to Dumbo itself that is preventing me from giving the film a bad score. My mind is telling me that I should, but I don't think I can. I'm having some memories of my attachment to the character when I was young, and of DeVito's performance, and that's proving difficult to overcome. This isn't a good film, but I do think it's serviceable. Serviceable for $170 million, by the way, is a sick joke. I don't know how Burton keeps getting projects, but after this doesn't profit to the extent Disney would have liked, maybe that's the end. I hope so. He almost ruined this.

6/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Us
2.   Gloria Bell
3.   Arctic
4.   High Flying Bird
5.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
6.   Captain Marvel
7.   Paddleton
8.   Cold Pursuit
9.   Happy Death Day 2U
10.   Greta
11.   Triple Frontier
12.   Fighting with My Family
13.   The Dirt
14.   Velvet Buzzsaw
15.   Alita: Battle Angel
16.   The Kid
17.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
18.   The Upside
19.   Dumbo
20.   Captive State
21.   Escape Room
22.   What Men Want
23.   Miss Bala
24.   Glass
25.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
26.   The Prodigy
27.   Polar
28.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline cobainwasmurdered

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #137 on: March 31, 2019, 05:22:06 AM »
Sleepy Hallow is his last good movie. Although I didn't see Corpse Bride which might have been good.

Offline Gary

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #138 on: March 31, 2019, 06:08:47 AM »
Sleepy Hallow is his last good movie. Although I didn't see Corpse Bride which might have been good.
"Corpse Bride" is fine, but I really dig his "Sweeney Todd" movie.

"go ahead. keep screaming "Shut The Fuck Up " at me. it only makes my opinions Worse"

Offline cobainwasmurdered

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #139 on: March 31, 2019, 06:53:25 AM »
I didn't watch that as Depp fatigue has fully set in. Especially Depp/Burton.

Offline The Thread Killer

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #140 on: March 31, 2019, 11:39:16 AM »
I know it's 25 years old now, but Ed Wood is one of my favorites.  Actually, looking at his filmography...Sleepy Hollow might be the last really good film he made, and that was 20 years ago.
"The grass is always greener on the other side, unless Vince Russo worked there...in which case the grass is most likely dead." - Jim Cornette

Offline Winter Epicland

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #141 on: March 31, 2019, 11:53:58 AM »
Dark Shadows and Big Eyes were just fine. Peculiar Children was dogshit though and I've said this before but Alice in Wonderland is one of the worst big budget films of this decade.

Agreed that Ed Wood is his best film.

Offline Avid Warehouse Enthusiast

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #142 on: March 31, 2019, 12:45:27 PM »
Are we forgetting Big Fish?

Offline Winter Epicland

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #143 on: March 31, 2019, 12:47:38 PM »
I was referring to his work from the past decade but I liked Big Fish.

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #144 on: March 31, 2019, 06:19:20 PM »


John Wick (2014), directed by David Leitch and Chad Stahelski

I've said what I wanted to say many times before, so I'll spare everyone. I am surprised that John Wick was even made considering that in the years after this film, most movies made with this size budget wind up bombing even when they're good. John Wick and Atomic Blonde are some exceptions, and no surprise that there are people talking about fusing these franchises together somehow. I don't know how that would work out, but after finally checking out John Wick, I really need to see it. I am a little bit surprised that people distilled the events down to John Wick's dog even though that's not what the movie is actually about, but people do what they do. I remember a lot of individuals talking about that at the time of the movie, but to me, that's not really what this is about. What John Wick is, is a triumph of choreography and stunts, of the goofy CGI blood, of fun more than anything else. When you turn a movie like this on, you feel like Batista, saying "GIVE ME WHAT I WANT," and these movies don't usually do that. John Wick is not one of those movies. There are some early issues with pacing, and maybe the story doesn't make the most sense in the world, but John Wick absolutely gives you what you want.

So, John Wick (Keanu Reeves). Some may not have the stomach for this, or think it's stupid, but I don't really care. John loses his wife to a terminal illness, after which he receives a puppy from his wife that will help him cope with her death. The puppy is named Daisy. John makes a connection with the puppy over the course of the day, because he's alone. He and his wife did not have kids. At a gas station, John has an incident with three Russian guys. Iosef (Alfie Allen) is their leader, and he's a piece of shit, but he also wants to buy John's car. John is not selling his car. The car? It's a 1969 Ford Mach 1. There is no way on this planet I would ever sell this car if I had it. Later that night, unfortunately, these guys have followed John back to his house. Once they get inside, they knock John out, kill Daisy, and steal his car. Obviously, I wouldn't react like John, but I would be pretty fucking mad. Iosef takes the car to a chop shop run by a man named Aurelio (John Leguizamo), and John is apparently familiar with people like Iosef. John knows exactly where Iosef would go, at which point we are told by Aurelio that he punched Iosef and kicked him out of his shop. Aurelio tells John who did it, and there's no coming back from here. Why?

John learns that Iosef is the son of Viggo (Michael Nyqvist), who just so happens to be the man in control of the Russian crime syndicate of New York City. There is so much more to this though. It turns out that John knows Viggo, there's a reason why. John had a previous life as a hitman, which he was able to leave by doing a job or Viggo that Viggo was certain would kill John. Viggo is told about John, and that leads to an incredible monologue which takes place mixed in with footage of John preparing for problems. Problems? A lot of them. Viggo also offers a contract on John to John's mentor, a hitman named Marcus (Willem Dafoe) who had spoken to John during his wife's funeral. Subsequently, John checks into the Continental Hotel, a place in New York City where criminals stay when they need shelter. Business is not allowed on the property, and they have rules that must be followed. The hotel manager (Louis Riddick) is kind of the creepy sort, and Winston (Ian McShane) is someone I'm sure will play a larger part in the following two films. Anyway, John's goal? He wants to kill Iosef for the pain and suffering he's caused. There's nothing that's going to get in his way, he'll stop at nothing.

Alright, so as it relates to the issues with pacing, I thought the start of this movie was a little difficult for one introducing a new action franchise. I don't often complain about things like this, but it was slow enough to be quite noticeable. Now, on the other hand, for that to be one of the film's only problems is a pretty good sign. I think another one is the way one of the final fights ends. Either way, this is a hell of a ride while it lasts and I enjoyed it the whole way. The gun fighting is realistic to the point where it might actually be too realistic, even though the blood, as I think I mentioned, is obviously not. The performances, you know, they are what they are. I'm not saying anyone was terrible, but I don't think anyone was really great with the exception of Nyqvist. His lines were delivered with aplomb, without exception. Even if those lines may have been bad, they weren't bad because he was delivering them. Keanu's performance, I wouldn't say that was great either, but it was understated. This was a neat touch considering there's only one other person I could see doing this role, that being Liam Neeson. If Neeson had done this role, this would feel like just everything else though. The casting here ensures that John Wick does not. That's probably the film's greatest triumph.

There are lots of action films similar to this one of course, but I said that John Wick feels unique. The reason it feels unique is because of the approach to each individual scene. there are lots of movies that try to create their own universe and fail entirely, one of the reasons this doesn't is because the attempt in doing so isn't so pervasive that it ruins the film. Instead, we have a movie where the greater workings of creating a franchise exist outside of the revenge story. This, of course, is something I like. I don't know how someone could watch this and get the idea that his lust for revenge is merely driven by the dog, but rather what the dog represents and that those people decided to fuck with him. I'm not going to go overboard here because I think this is a really good movie, but it has been reviewed to death and there's really nothing I think I can add. The casting decisions here were great, even when the roles were quite small themselves. The movie is cool, that's what it is. The copious amounts of killing and gun shit, it may surprise you but that doesn't bother me at all. What you hope for is that a movie gives you what you want, and this one does. That's all that matters to me. The scene in Viggo's club where Iosef is hiding, that's obviously the best one of many great action pieces. I don't think I need to tell you that. All the franchise ideas are great too, I'm looking forward to seeing more.

7.5/10


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #145 on: April 01, 2019, 08:45:39 AM »


The Beach Bum (2019), directed by Harmony Korine

It should come as no surprise that The Beach Bum is a movie you'll either really love or really hate, considering who wrote and directed what turned out to be another hedonistic romp that reviewers either loved or hated. Neon seems to be a distributor that specializes in releasing such films, like Vox Lux and Assassination Nation for example, but nothing could really prepare you for The Beach Bum. The Beach Bum is a movie that features more sex than I think I've seen in a film for quite a while, and admittedly more laughs than I've had in around a year. That's not an exaggeration either. Given what I just said, you can see which side of love or hate that I fall on, but remember I am a guy who grew up on Cheech & Chong. A film like this one is something that feels like it's made for me, it's something I needed in life. The initial trailer felt hallucinogenic in that I have never envisoned something I never knew I wanted so much, and rest assured I have not been disappointed. The Beach Bum is a trip, one that when the novelty of it begins to wear off, the film is just about over as it should be. That, of course, is how a film should really be. Granted, I will not say this is a great film and there are reasons for that. I unabashedly loved it though.

The Beach Bum is Moondog (Matthew McConaughey), a poet living in the Florida Keys. This man is a local legend, a celebrity, an electric piece of what makes Key West into what it is. Moondog spends his days getting high, drunk, getting into poon, and doing all kinds of other weird shit, if you can figure out what other weird shit would even be. How could Moondog afford this lifestyle? His poetry is a legitimate thing, he has written books. His wife Minnie (Isla Fisher) is very rich, she doesn't care what he does as long as he's happy. So, that's that. I will point out from here that what plot there is, is also quite minimal and doesn't really matter. You can either choose to enjoy this film or not. Moondog might look like a bum, but he isn't actually a bum. The dead tooth is just decoration it seems, an irrelevance that has no impact on the quality of his life. His daughter Heather (Stefania LaVie Owen) is getting married, but in the meantime, we are introduced to some other people in Moondog's life. Moondog's agent Lewis (Jonah Hill) really needs Moondog to write his next book, and it appears that's a commonly held opinion by the people around Moondog. In order to write it, he carries around a shitty typewriter and gets to typing whenever he sees fit.

When it's time for Heather to get married, Moondog is banging some sleeze in the back of a burger joint, this is just how the guy is. Everyone eating finds this quite amusing. Afterwards, Moondog makes his trip to the wedding, which is hosted by Lingerie (Snoop Dogg), Moondog's friend and Minnie's lover. I'm gonna leave out a massive amount of details as always, but my favorite part in this sequence is a scene where Lingerie shows Moondog a Christmas tree made of marijuana that he found in an isolated pond in Jamaica. Anyway, let's talk about after the wedding. Once the wedding is over, there's an issue with Moondog's life. He is going to be without home or money, effectively becoming an actual bum. The journey from this point could not be more ridiculous. All those other people in the trailer factor into the story somehow, but this is a ride. It's a ride that I didn't want to end, where I wanted to see the side characters much more, and ultimately you can't really predict where any of these things are going. 

Everyone knows that Martin Lawrence and Zac Efron are in this, but their roles themselves are highly amusing. I thought Lawrence's was the best side character of the bunch, which means that I think this is the first good thing he's done since Bad Boys II. A lot of people don't think that's any good either. Now, to that point, I think this is a film that has heart even though nothing in the promotional material seems that way. Moondog has chosen to live the good life, but it is a choice with consequences. Said consequences are not focused on very much here, but there's enough. I think Moondog is going to go down as being one of my favorite characters on screen. The performance is spectacular, everything here feeling improvised, so it probably was. There's only one poem that Moondog recites multiple times in the film, and it's a hilarious one. I don't know what people think of these drug fueled journey movies, but I'm all about them. This movie, to that end anyway, is exactly what you'd expect. The point, I thought anyway, is to show people a caricature of someone who decided to shut off the world and delve into their own happiness even if to the detriment of others. The detriment, though, I don't really see very much of that.

Is this one of McConaughey's best performances? I think most people would agree that it is one of them, but a lot of the people who don't like this have a problem with the film as a whole. I am not one of those people. The ending feels like the most tacked on, ludicrous scene that anyone could imagine, and I think I loved that too. The Beach Bum takes on what people expect to get out of society and runs over those concepts because clearly some people don't agree with them, and I really appreciate that. There's a part where some random guy is driving his wheelchair and gets his head bashed in with a bottle, it's entirely played for laughs, that's just what this is. Seemingly this is offensive, and I guess that it is, but this is someone's vision of this kind of life and you have to accept it. Or, in the end, you don't. Moondog is an asshole, that much is true, but one may find the character to be quite brilliant and enjoyable.

In closing, I should talk about the technical aspects of The Beach Bum. This film has great cinematography, which is one of the least surprising things about it. Have you seen any of Benoit Debie's movies? The Sisters Brothers also boasts this, but The Beach Bum is a different style of movie. The moments in the film are shown in scenes that I can't really describe as completed scenes. Montages? Kind of, how do you describe this shit? The essence of the film is to capture the moment and this is accomplished superbly. The score, also, is not what you'd expect. John Debney is a composer who has worked on things like The Jungle Book, or Evan Almighty. Yeah, the score is exactly like that. You know how much I loved that shit? It felt perfect. I feel like this movie was filmed on the fly and that there were all kinds of ideas jammed into it as production was going on, and that's probably the best way to approach a movie like this one once the director can get a quality cast. Trust me when I say nothing could prepare someone for this cast of characters, and that holds true whether or not you like this. I know I'm in the extreme minority of people on the internet but I don't give a fuck. I'll watch a movie with Matthew McConaughey playing a bum who parades around in a thong and like it. Much like similar movies from the 70's that I loved, I'll probably watch this again.

7.5/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Us
2.   Gloria Bell
3.   Arctic
4.   High Flying Bird
5.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
6.   Captain Marvel
7.   The Beach Bum
8.   Paddleton
9.   Cold Pursuit
10.   Happy Death Day 2U
11.   Greta
12.   Triple Frontier
13.   Fighting with My Family
14.   The Dirt
15.   Velvet Buzzsaw
16.   Alita: Battle Angel
17.   The Kid
18.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
19.   The Upside
20.   Dumbo
21.   Captive State
22.   Escape Room
23.   What Men Want
24.   Miss Bala
25.   Glass
26.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
27.   The Prodigy
28.   Polar
29.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #146 on: April 01, 2019, 05:24:09 PM »


Lowriders (2017), directed by Ricardo de Montreuil

For the first time, tonight I decided to tell some of my own experiences with lowriders to people here, all of which I said were true. I think that was the only time I mentioned this. The funny part was that I also have a video tape of my cousin bringing his lowrider to my third birthday party, but I no longer have anything I can watch that video tape with. Everyone knows enough about lowriders to have some base knowledge of the subject, right? The intention of creating a lowrider was to have something different than what white people had, or so I've been told. Lowriding culture is definitely a thing here in Los Angeles, because of course that's where it all started. I did not expect to see a movie about this subject. Not just now, not in the past, but ever. It's a new time I suppose. I'm not surprised if people haven't heard of this film because I suspect that it didn't get much play outside of this area in the first place, but to be honest, I'd never heard of it either. With a respectable $6 million take, it appears that enough did, and there we have a film. What's it about though? You'll have to read on if you want to know that. I think this is a film with heart, but it also has an enormous flaw that soured me on the movie. I actually feel bad that I wonm't be giving this a good rating though.

Danny (Gabriel Chavarria) is a young adult who likes to draw graffiti on bridges, but most would call it street art. It's quite nice. The beginning of the film features Danny with his friends Chuy (Tony Revolori) and Claudia (Yvette Monreal), they're going out to drink a little and dance a little. On the way home, Danny needs to take a piss, so he has Claudia pull over on one of our bridges that crosses the LA River. Danny doesn't really only need to take a piss though. He climbs over the bridge wall and starts tagging it, and Claudia has some good things going for her, so she wants absolutely no part of this. She bails and leaves Chuy with Danny. Of course, here comes the cops. Danny and Chuy run as best they can, but inevitably they're caught and booked. Chuy doesn't know anyone else to call, so he calls Miguel (Demian Bichir), Danny's dad. Danny is displeased with this, but you know, it isn't always up to you who bails you out of jail. Or is it? I don't know anything about that shit. Anyway, it turns out that Miguel and Danny have some friction in their relationship and with good reason.

Miguel, as you may expect, owns a lowrider shop, which is how things tie back to the title. Miguel's problems with Danny largely stem from how Miguel was as a father, he wasn't a good one. He was drunk all the time, and Danny's mother died while all that was going on. Danny is not the only one who feels that he was mistreated. Francisco, or "Ghost" (Theo Rossi) is Danny's brother, he is a fair bit older than Danny and has stronger memories of the way his childhood was. Ghost has just gotten out of prison and he was there for a while, and it turns out that in addition to how Miguel treated him as a kid, Miguel also failed to visit him in prison. This isn't good. Miguel has now remarried to Gloria (Eva Longoria), who for whatever reason plays little part in this movie other than showing that she provides stability for her husband. Miguel no longer drinks either, but that doesn't really matter to Ghost. Ghost wants to get to know his brother better, but there are a few issues in the family that have to be settled. One of them is Elysian Park. There's a very important lowrider contest there, and both Ghost and Miguel will enter. Danny wants to get closer to Ghost because he's been gone so long, but what's the deal?

I did leave out that Danny has a girlfriend, Lorelai (Melissa Benoist), but I found it difficult to work into that last paragraph. Anyway, I think this is a film with heart, with some pillars of a good story, but ultimately there's a creative decision that I find to be stereotypical and bothersome. Why do the Mexicans have to resort to violence when there's friction and conflict? Do you see what I mean? I could just put down my score after that and it's easily justifiable, but I'll go on. I do not see why a rare Mexican-American drama film has to have such content. We don't need that. The dramatic content is also not all that great either, the soul of the film really works but the rest does not. On the subject of said soul, that's just something you'd have to watch to understand what I mean. This is a coming-of-age movie where the protagonist learns to embrace his heritage, roots, family, whatever you'd call it. Perhaps the best word to use would be tradition. This is what the film should have been about, with less conflict and more scenes where the young man learns about himself and his past. I don't like the need to bring gang shooting into a movie like this, it bothers me greatly.

The lead performance is also not that great, but Demian Bichir is always good and he carries this film a really long way. This role couldn't have been that easy as Bichir is not from Los Angeles, but I really couldn't tell. I should also point out that there are aspects of the family feud that are interesting, but ultimately, I think that this isn't what the film should have been. I rarely say that, but when I do, it's with good reason. The film isn't too well directed and isn't too well written, but I did think there was a good storyline with Lorelai. What her character represents is like gentrification, of ignorance, and I thought that plot point was well paid off. Now that all being said, I think there are hardly any films that serve a Mexican-American audience and that a studio really should get to work on some. In the last year or so, the only ones I could really think of that I saw were Creed II, Sicario: Day of the Soldado (from my experience, seriously), and The Nun (also featuring Bichir). I think everyone can see that there's a big gap here. I also think Hollywood knows it, but it's not like they're doing anything about it. They have decided that the audience is better served by watching the exact same films as everyone else, but I think the past of the industry has shown this is not true. Maybe I'm wrong, but my brain and the sheer amount of material I've watched is telling me that I'm not. When they can't make one without having gangs and shooting, I don't know bro. That's not right.

5.5/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   The Shape of Water
3.   Get Out
4.   Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
5.   Logan
6.   Wonder Woman
7.   The Big Sick
8.   Thor: Ragnarok
9.   Logan Lucky
10.   The Beguiled
11.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
12.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
13.   The Lost City of Z
14.   First They Killed My Father
15.   Darkest Hour
16.   A Ghost Story
17.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
18.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
19.   It
20.   Battle of the Sexes
21.   Okja
22.   Kong: Skull Island
23.   It Comes at Night
24.   Split
25.   1922
26.   Personal Shopper
27.   Chuck
28.   Atomic Blonde
29.   Wheelman
30.   The Lego Batman Movie
31.   Megan Leavey
32.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
33.   Menashe
34.   American Made
35.   Beauty and the Beast
36.   Imperial Dreams
37.   Murder on the Orient Express
38.   The Zookeeper's Wife
39.   Free Fire
40.   Win It All
41.   The Wall
42.   Life
43.   Breathe
44.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
45.   Sleight
46.   Alone in Berlin
47.   A United Kingdom
48.   Trespass Against Us
49.   The Mountain Between Us
50.   War Machine
51.   Happy Death Day
52.   Lowriders
53.   Justice League
54.   To the Bone
55.   Wakefield
56.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
57.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
58.   Sand Castle
59.   CHiPs
60.   Death Note
61.   The Belko Experiment
62.   The Great Wall
63.   Fist Fight
64.   Snatched
65.   Wilson
66.   Queen of the Desert
67.   Sleepless
68.   All Eyez on Me


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #147 on: April 02, 2019, 06:10:00 PM »


The House (2017), directed by Andrew Jay Cohen

I was thinking of making all kinds of horrible jokes at the start of this, but I'm afraid I've both had enough of said terrible jokes and that nothing I could say is as bad as what I just watched. So, I'd rather not. I'm not sure why I turned this on other than that I am attempting to be comprehensive with 2017, and as a result I'll be watching quite a bit of trash over the next few months. That's fine as I usually don't watch trash movies, and they're different. I've said before that I prefer bad comedy to bad drama, but what about when it's so bad that I didn't laugh even at how bad it is? That doesn't happen very often with me, so you know how I really feel about this movie when I say that. The poster for The House does leave little to the imagination here, obviously the two lead characters run a casino of some kind. However, having not watched the trailer, this was not what I thought it would be. It's actually a hell of a lot worse, something that never should have been made. It's no wonder that comedy has gone to shit when the premises are this bad and when the lead actor has appeared in countless movies as a lead without changing his act a single time. We don't need this anymore. The last good thing Will Ferrell did was what, Step Brothers?  Not trying to count animated movies there, but that's pretty bad.

Scott (Will Ferrell) and Kate (Amy Poehler) are parents to Alex, who is headed off to university. They're on a visit at Bucknell, which is where Kate and Scott went to, and it turns out that Alex decides to go there during her visit. She also gets accepted, which leads to hopes that Alex will be funded by their community's scholarship program. Unfortunately, she is not. A city councilor named Bob (Nick Kroll) plays a large part in deciding that the city council will not fund these scholarships so that they can build a community pool. I guess this is a political statement of some sort, but I don't really care. Scott and Kate are then forced to try begging for loans, a raise, etc, but they're rebuffed at every turn. Enter Frank (Jason Mantzoukas), Scott's best friend. Frank is getting divorced from Raina (Michaela Watkins) because he has a gambling problem and a porn addiction, both of which Frank denies in the way that people typically do, but he still wants to go to Las Vegas. That just gets thrown in there somehow, but anyway, Kate and Scott go with him.

Upon arriving, we get basically no buildup or anything and shoot straight over to a craps table. Imagination is not on the agenda here. Scott decides to play and does well, but ultimately he says something he shouldn't say and the couple loses the money they were intending to win college tuition with. Back at home later that week, Frank decides to pitch an idea to Scott and Kate. His plan? He wants to start a casino at his house, because the house always wins. He thinks he can get his wife back if he does this, and he also believes that his friends will be able to get the money they need for college. In order to evade detection, his scheme revolves around the idea that people in the town will be able to park at the grocery store, go in and buy something so they can explain their whereabouts. Meanwhile, after they're done with that, they go around the back and walk through a wooded path to his house, knock on the back door, and head on in after giving a password. Sounds like a plan, it's not a bad one anyway. Problem is, that guy Bob is an annoying, terribly unfunny piece of shit, and he'll have problems when people aren't paying attention to him.

I think I've been able to illustrate that this film just isn't funny or original at all, and other than Jason Mantzoukas this is a total waste on every level. I have no idea how movies like this one even get made, and never once did I get the feeling that anyone was invested in ensuring this film was successful. For whatever reason a lot of people still find Will Ferrell amusing, I genuinely couldn't tell you why, but this material is even beneath him. This genre where middle aged people go extreme just isn't my favorite either, so keep that in mind as you read everything above, should you read it at all. Everything here is ridiculous on every level, and anyone with a brain should figure out that it's impossible for them to have enough friends to get them to fund someone's college tuition through gambling. Who do they really know anyway? Two of them are fucking losers and the other one gets laughed out of the building when asking for a raise. There's just no ingenuity or imagination to any of the proceedings here.

I need to reiterate that I didn't laugh hard a single time and only laughed a few times. There were some things here that I just couldn't bring myself to laugh at, and I was in a really good mood when I turned this on! Where things really blow apart, is that we're supposed to feel bad for someone whose parents can't pay for their education when almost everyone who goes to school these days is forced to go into insane student debt. Get that bitch a loan and stop wasting my time.

3/10

2017 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Dunkirk
2.   The Shape of Water
3.   Get Out
4.   Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
5.   Logan
6.   Wonder Woman
7.   The Big Sick
8.   Thor: Ragnarok
9.   Logan Lucky
10.   The Beguiled
11.   The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
12.   Star Wars: The Last Jedi
13.   The Lost City of Z
14.   First They Killed My Father
15.   Darkest Hour
16.   A Ghost Story
17.   Spider-Man: Homecoming
18.   I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore
19.   It
20.   Battle of the Sexes
21.   Okja
22.   Kong: Skull Island
23.   It Comes at Night
24.   Split
25.   1922
26.   Personal Shopper
27.   Chuck
28.   Atomic Blonde
29.   Wheelman
30.   The Lego Batman Movie
31.   Megan Leavey
32.   Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
33.   Menashe
34.   American Made
35.   Beauty and the Beast
36.   Imperial Dreams
37.   Murder on the Orient Express
38.   The Zookeeper's Wife
39.   Free Fire
40.   Win It All
41.   The Wall
42.   Life
43.   Breathe
44.   The Man Who Invented Christmas
45.   Sleight
46.   Alone in Berlin
47.   A United Kingdom
48.   Trespass Against Us
49.   The Mountain Between Us
50.   War Machine
51.   Happy Death Day
52.   Lowriders
53.   Justice League
54.   To the Bone
55.   Wakefield
56.   The Hitman's Bodyguard
57.   King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
58.   Sand Castle
59.   CHiPs
60.   Death Note
61.   The Belko Experiment
62.   The Great Wall
63.   Fist Fight
64.   Snatched
65.   Wilson
66.   Queen of the Desert
67.   The House
68.   Sleepless
69.   All Eyez on Me


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest

Offline muzzington

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #148 on: April 02, 2019, 08:55:01 PM »
I took the leap and watched The House mainly because Mantzoukas was in it.

Not sure why I didn't enjoy it exactly. It has a lot of people I find funny in other things in it but it just felt so shallow.

Offline Firmino of the 909

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Re: In Which I Review Movies Part II
« Reply #149 on: April 03, 2019, 12:48:15 PM »


The Hummingbird Project (2019), directed by Kim Nguyen

I first saw the trailer for The Hummingbird Project when I was at an indie theater seeing Arctic, and my initial impression was that this could be something I really want to watch due to the potential for attention to detail. While that attention to detail is here, and while my expectations in that regard were met, this feels like a film that could have been great and didn't get over the line. Unlike a lot of people, I don't really mind these movies about Wall Street, nor do I find them particularly boring. I also enjoy Jesse Eisenberg's performances when he isn't playing Lex Luthor, so this felt like it was up my alley. In some ways it is and I'll get into that, but I should point out that only one of the characters here is really likable at all. This is something that hurts the film a lot, and then you take into account that there are some issues with whether or not the events portrayed here are functionally impossible. They probably are, but I always like stories where people have to achieve their impossible dream, whatever it may be. There's some other weird stuff here too, and this feels like it's a true story even though it's not. Instead, we have a really weird movie where the two lead roles are the opposite of how I would have cast them, yet both of them fit seamlessly into these parts. It's kind of odd, like the film as a whole is.

Vincent (Jesse Eisenberg) and Anton Zaleski (Alexander Skarsgard) are cousins who work at a trading firm on Wall Street, the specifics of their employment are not made entirely as clear as they should have been. At the start of the film, Vincent has a meeting with Bryan (Frank Schorpion), at which Vincent tells Bryan his plan. It appears that Bryan is a major investor of some kind and Vincent has to sell him on his plan, which he is able to do. What's the plan? Vincent is the hustle man of the duo, he has an idea to get mega rich with a little bit of hard work. The plan is to run a fiber optic cable from the Kansas City stock exchange to New York City, this is something that would cost a lot of money. As a result of having this fiber optic cable, they would be able to code things in away that allows them to automate trades faster than everyone else and therefore make a shitload of money. I have just massively understated the process of everything, but Anton's role in the process is to program the network and automate things. He's a very intelligent guy and as you see, they made Skarsgard a dork to play this role. I was impressed with this transformation. The trading firm Vincent and Anton work at is run by Eva Torres (Salma Hayek), a savage and ruthlessly demanding boss.

Of course, I'm talking about running a physical fiber optic cable all the way from Kansas City to the New York Stock Exchange. You know how ridiculous and hard this would actually be? It's impossible I'm sure, but Vinny and Anton need a construction guy with the knowhow and ability to get the right contractors to do this work. Enter Mark (Michael Mando), a specialist in this field who isn't much of a people person. Mark slides into the team and becomes essential to Vinny, doing what they need him to do. The thing is that Anton and Vinny really need to quit their jobs in order to take this project on. Anton doesn't have a way with people, but Vinny is able to convince him that he's being used and Eva doesn't care about his project, which is true. When they quit, Eva tells them that she won't forget this, and most assuredly she will not. Mark and Vinny head to Kansas City to start the project, and the land purchasing goes well enough. There are some major obstacles though. Firstly, they need to find a way to drill under the Appalachian Mountains on protected land, which is difficult but not impossible. The actualities of using the drill there are harder than getting clearance to use it. Then, there's Eva. Not only would she not let this go, but she's set on finding away to do a connection that runs even faster than the Zaleski's, and failing that she may just get them in trouble for fucking her over.

The performances in this film, as I said, are reversed from what I would have done. Eisenberg as the hustle is weird, and so is Skarsgard as the dork, but I really thought this was good casting. The story itself, is obviously about greed and the way such things may impact humans. People will go very far to make a lot of money, and when others are presented with the real world ramifications of doing so, they just can't handle it. The Hummingbird Project is also weird in that our journey is about running a line of cable through a forest. This is a film made by smeone who really, really wanted to make a unique film about Wall Street and not follow any of the tropes seen in this subgenre. To that end, the film works because it does not do that, but I still feel that there are some missed opportunities here. The ending is something I loathed, I also don't appreciate the effort to make more of this story than what it was. There isn't much opportunity or opening for some kind of moral triumph here, but Nguyen tries his best and as a result those parts of the movie feel very clunky. Still, I do really enjoy how far the film delves into direct market access. It's a thing, and it's also basically cheating, but that's how these firms stay ahead and participate in high-frequency trading.

The Hummingbird Project has had mixed reviews, which would indicate that people feel similarly to me about this one. I think the film lacks some style in addition to the things I've already discussed, but I also think this was alright and not boring even though it very well could have been. That shit where a movie about something like this tries to answer questions about how people live their lives though, I'll give that a swerve. However, even with the inclusion of such things, I don't think this was a bad film. The lead performances are good enough, but a movie where the events feel so important needs to have a little bit more levity. The cinematography is rather workman-like, and for that matter so is the music. It's easy to see why this film was dropped at this time of year after being shown in Toronto back in the fall, but that doesn't mean it's bad. It just exists. I made some changes to my rankings list too.

5.5/10

2019 Films Ranked


Spoiler: show

1.   Us
2.   Gloria Bell
3.   Arctic
4.   High Flying Bird
5.   The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
6.   Captain Marvel
7.   The Beach Bum
8.   Paddleton
9.   Cold Pursuit
10.   Happy Death Day 2U
11.   Greta
12.   Triple Frontier
13.   Fighting with My Family
14.   The Dirt
15.   Velvet Buzzsaw
16.   Alita: Battle Angel
17.   The Kid
18.   The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
19.   The Upside
20.   Dumbo
21.   The Hummingbird Project
22.   Escape Room
23.   Captive State
24.   What Men Want
25.   Miss Bala
26.   Glass
27.   Tyler Perry's A Madea Family Funeral
28.   The Prodigy
29.   Polar
30.   Serenity


koab [8:27 PM]
damn i thought you guys were good little cucks who would shit themselfs so a POC could peacefully protest