What Was The Last Movie You Watched?

Discussion in 'The Moving Picture' started by Amy Jeanne, Aug 5, 2007.

  1. belfastboy

    belfastboy My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    One of my all time favourites. One of the very few movies I have bothered to watch multiple times. Teardrop is one of cinema's great characters.
     
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  2. Trenchfriend

    Trenchfriend I'll Lock Up

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    "Lawrence of Arabia", right now.
     
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  3. I think I ended up in his neighborhood today while out exploring some local dirt roads. :eek: Fortunately he (or maybe it was a cousin) was friendly and gave us directions.
     
  4. belfastboy

    belfastboy My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    as long as you don't stumble upon the still or the lab you'll be okay! I'm Scotts/Irish by descent so I come by my Hill William honestly. Somehow Great grandpa got on the wrong boat and ended up in Canada not Appalachia.
     
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  5. Fading Fast

    Fading Fast

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    Trio from 1950 with way too many (mainly British) stars to list, but a shoutout is deserved to Ronald Culver for one of his best performances
    • Three short stories by (and introduced by) W. Somerset Maugham
    • Maugham said it in the introduction, there are no truly new stories - it's all about what the author does with them and, kudos to Maugham, these are well told
    • The first tells the tale of a middle aged verger who's fired from his job because he can't read or write (but has done his job well for seventeen years) - felt modern as so many of us have to "reinvent" our careers in middle age these days as skill requirements change
    • The middle one takes place on a luxury liner and brings a neat twist to the old story of a pushy "know it all" proving to be a bit more than the blowhard he appears (a random act of kindness is one of life's treasures, 'nuff said)
    • Finally - and the best was saved for last - we see the lives of wealthy TB patients in a Scottish sanitarium (don't think hospital, think luxury hotel) and what happens when one couple falls in love with dim life prospects
    • There's nothing earth shattering here (these are the opposite of so many modern movies that believe they must be loud and shocking to be art), but they are sincere story telling
    • Lastly, for us today, they're little time-capsules to post-war Europe well worth seeing for that alone - clothes, cars, architecture, cruise ships (for travel not Disney profits) and manners transport you to another time


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    The Two Mrs. Carrolls
    from 1947 with Barbara Stanwyck, Humphrey Bogart, Alexis Smith and Nigel Bruce
    • I want to like this movie more than I did - what, with Bogie and Stanwyck, I was all but sold before I saw it - but unfortunately, it struggles
    • It's a Hitchcock-like movie without Hitchcock at the helm to pace the mystery and to make you care more about the people than the plot
    • Bogie plays a disturbed artist, a painter, whose has an affair with Stanwyck and then marries her after his first wife dies at a young age
    • Surprisingly - as I find most children in movies a distraction (at best) - Bogie's mature-beyond-her-years ten-year-old daughter is one of the more engaging characters as she sees better than the adults that something is off in Bogie and Stanwyck's marriage, but her love for her dad blinds her to what's obvious to the rest of us (and it's only a mild spoiler alert as it's telegraphed pretty early) - her dad kills his wives when he finds a new woman he wants to marry
    • And I wasn't kidding about the movie needing Hitchcock to direct as he, basically, did a much-better (somewhat) version of this story in '41's Suspicion with Cary Grant and (drop dead gorgeous) Joan Fontaine where only the movie production code made him addle the outcome


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    Follow Me Quietly
    from 1949
    • It's a B-movie - an hour long - but somehow it rises above itself in the, at the time, aborning genre of crime drama/documentary that follows a police investigation step by step
    • Here, a serial killer, "The Judge" is strangling women on rainy nights, but not leaving enough clues to be caught
    • The lead detective - in a characterization that will become a cliche - is obsessed with capturing the elusive killer
    • And something that was already a movie cliche at the time, we have the "intrepid" reporter both hounding and helping the police; this time, in the form of a pretty blonde who initially fights with the detective while they begin to fall for each other - it's too obvious to work well in this one
    • It's really all too obvious here, but it still has some good things - the use of a mannequin instead of the usual composition sketch is a neat trick as is the methodical investigation leading from one clue (a magazine left at the crime scent) to, eventually, a B-movie style (read, guns blazing) shootout at a chemical factory (no one seems to be worried about machine gun bullets flying around pipes with God knows what chemicals flowing through them)
    • Is it good - not really, but somehow it's still fun in a sometimes serious, sometimes almost campy way
     
  6. Trenchfriend

    Trenchfriend I'll Lock Up

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    Stellan Skarsgard playing "Stellan Skarsgârd". :)



    I just love him!
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2020
  7. Doctor Strange

    Doctor Strange I'll Lock Up

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    Us. I didn't like Get Out, and I liked this one even less. It was well made and had a few scares, but it was thematically underdeveloped and inconsistent within its own "logic". Anyway, it didn't work for me.
     
  8. bearinfedora

    bearinfedora Familiar Face

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    Joker.
     
  9. Zombie_61

    Zombie_61 I'll Lock Up

    Creed II (2018). Not terrible, but predictable and unnecessary. The son of Apollo Creed fights the son of Ivan Drago; if you've seen the Rocky franchise movies you can pretty much figure out what happens.

    The Mule (2018). Clint Eastwood stars as Earl Stone, a 90-year-old husband, father, and horticulturist who is hired by a local drug cartel to be a courier. Hoo boy. I'd only recommend this one to hardcore Eastwood fans.
     
  10. belfastboy

    belfastboy My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    Yes, we watched about 15 minutes of The Mule......should have been named The Dog......turned it off. Terrible movie.
     
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  11. Fading Fast

    Fading Fast

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    Background to Danger from 1943 starring George Raft, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre and Brenda Marshal

    It's a movie, seemingly, made up of parts of other movies - Casablanca, Night Train to Munich, Watch on the Rhine and other WWII propaganda flicks - resulting in a movie with some enjoyable scenes, but that, as a whole, feels flat.

    Background to Danger borrows shamelessly from Casablanca's style: there's an opening-scene voice over with maps describing desperate people "trapped" in a city of intrigue, a hero in a trench coat and fedora, and a scene with a plane leaving the city as those left behind longing look on. Also like Casablanca, Background to Danger's story is a bit muddled and not really that interesting when it gets straightened-out at the end; hence, like with a Hitchcock movie, what matters is the "who" and not the "what."

    The who is George Raft masquerading as an American businesses man in Ankara, but he's really an agent of the American government trying to expose a German spy ring plotting to create a reason for Russia to invade Turkey so that neutral Turkey will become an ally of Germany. In my defense, that sentence is less confusing than the explanation provided in the movie.

    Along the way, Raft encounters a German Colonel, Greenstreet (born to play sinisterly charming characters), trying to provoke the incident to push Turkey into German arms and a few Russian agents (siblings Lorrie and Marshall - arguing that anything can come out of the same parental gene pool) trying to thwart the Germans.

    With those pieces in place for this war-time propaganda film, the movie becomes a bunch of chase, capture, torture and escape scenes combined with tentative alliances and misunderstandings (and the usual Lorre craziness).

    Driving the narrative, Raft faces off against rotund Greenstreet (he's fortunate it isn't a pie eating contest) while he somewhat partners with, but still doesn't trust, the Russians nor they him. Raft and the Russian operatives, eventually and grudging, come to respect each other (message to war-time American public about its Soviet ally received). Simultaneously, Raft and Marshal realize that since they are the two best-looking people in the movie, they need to fall in love.

    It's fine for an 80-minute long diversion - and there are some neat 1940's car, clothes and architectural details (Greenstreet's over-the-top office pretty well captures Nazi architecture) - but see any of the movies noted in the first paragraph for a better version of a similar type of propaganda film.
     
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  12. Worf

    Worf I'll Lock Up

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    "JoJo Rabbit" - My friend Sugi... who used to own the local "art house" before selling out to Landmark said I HAD to watch this movie... so I broke down and rented it. I'm pretty knowledgeable about WWII so I didn't expect to learn anything and I didn't but I was thoroughly entertained. The leads were fantastic and the film was laugh out loud funny but unlike Hogans Hero's it eventually turned around and kicked me in the gut several times. You can follow the course of the war through the eyes of the titular lead as things go from bad to worse for Germany. I know it got nominated for several Oscars but this film was way more entertaining to me than the bloated "The Irishman" I could've easily voted it best picture. We loved it.

    Worf
     
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  13. Julian Shellhammer

    Julian Shellhammer Practically Family

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    The Missus consented to watch Gunga Din, but we stopped half way through with the idea of picking up the next night.
    The next night she did not want to resume. How someone couldn't enjoy Victor McLaglen being Victor McLaglen, Cary Grant mugging wildly, and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. being suave and jolly and brave, is baffling.
     
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  14. Fading Fast

    Fading Fast

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    Blinded by the Light from 2019

    Okay, I grew up in a seedy-ish New Jersey town in the '70s; one of the Jerusalems of the religion of Bruce Springsteen. But to be honest, I like, but have never loved, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band - the Rolling Stones held the answers to life for a fifteen-year-old me. But I get the devotion of his fans as you can't live in the Vatican and not understand the passion true believers have for Catholicism.

    Apparently, the hopelessness, angst, sexual frustration and the need for more that a young, angry man in a depressed New Jersey town in the '70s cried out for on vinyl translated across the Atlantic to an angry teenager experiencing hopelessness, angst, sexual frustration and the need for more in a depressed English town in the '80s.

    That's the theme of Blinded by the Light. The story is Bend it Like Beckham, with Bruce substituting for the soccer great and a put-upon-by-a-traditional-father Pakistani teenage boy substituting for a soccer-playing white teenage tom-boy with a mom who wants a girly-girl daughter.

    And here's the reason they keep making these movies: they work. They aren't original or surprising, but teenage angst is universal and finding answers in something - a soccer star who can work magic with a ball or a rock star who writes meaningful-to-the-young lyrics - is inspiring.

    All the rest is by-the-numbers filler: our teenage hero fights prejudice, overcomes his shyness with girls and loneliness at school, hurts his best friend and learns the humility of apologizing, fights with and, then, finds common ground with his procrustean father (who miraculously sees the light - get it - by the end) and gets to meet his hero (which based on the pics run during the credits - and since this is based a real story - apparently did happen).

    Other than the awkward way Bruce's lyrics are scattered across the screen when his songs are playing and the gratuitous Reagan-Thatcher-hate political statement, it's a well done version of a movie we've seen before and will see again.


    N.B. to @Julian Shellhammer, my girlfriend and I watched "Gunga Din" recently (and for probably the 50th time each) and loved it. It was a rainy Sunday afternoon - the perfect time to escape with that movie.
     
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  15. Julian Shellhammer

    Julian Shellhammer Practically Family

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    The Harvey Girls (1946) with Judy Garland, John Hodiak, Virginia O'Brien, and a twenty-year old Angela Lansbury playing a hard-as-nails saloon "hostess". Directed by George Sidney, with whom I had been unfamiliar until this viewing sent me to IMDb. Sidney delivers swirling, swooping technicolor camera work, moving up, down, all around, complementing the dancing and singing rather than distracting from it.

    I noticed, and commented too frequently to the Missus, how many times Sidney has characters walking between the actors or dancers or singers and the camera.

    Robert Alton is credited with staging the musical numbers and they are fluid, active without being overly kinetic. He uses crowds that flow in flawless synchronization with the music.

    And I how could I not mention Johnny Mercer's lyrics, clever and sophisticated? I could go on and on- I'm glad I re-discovered it.
     
  16. Héctor Fernández

    Héctor Fernández One Too Many

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    The Caine Mutiny.
     
  17. Fading Fast

    Fading Fast

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    Back Street from 1941 with Charles Boyer, Margaret Sullavan and Frank McHugh

    In the early 1900s, a midwest girl (Sullavan) meets a New York businessman (Boyer) in town on a stopover; they fall in love; plan to elope; circumstances prevent her from making the boat they were leaving on; he assumes she had a change of heart (she didn't) and he goes back to New York.

    Five years later, she is living in New York and runs into (married) him on the street, they have an affair - both are upfront about what's happening - that turns into a permanent mistress situation.

    How the heck did this movie get made in 1941? Were all the censors out getting coffee at the same time?

    The rest of the movie is a thoughtful look at the pain, and occasional periods of joy, a long-term mistress experiences: the real family gets him for holidays and vacations, children get born and grow up, milestones come and go while the mistress mainly waits for the small windows of togetherness they have.

    Slow in parts, but overall a strong movie with this one questionable casting decision: Margaret Sullivan (who has an alluringly wistful clutch to her voice) is beautiful in every way, but she does not look, feel, carry herself or imply "kept woman" in any manner. Marlene Dietrich or Greta Garbo, with their fallen-Eve vibe, were born to play mistresses; Sullivan not so much - but she tries hard here.

    As the lovers reach old age, there's a big confrontation - sparked by his adult children violating the unspoken agreement that everyone looks the other way regarding dad's mistress - resulting in a surprisingly modern outcome (recognizing the context of the times). But the real question is, again, how did this sensitive look at, what is effectively, a long-term extra-marital affair slide by the censors?

    And a shoutout is owed to character actor Frank McHugh - even if you don't recognize his name, if you know old movies, you know him as he pops up as a goofy character with a forced nasally laugh, almost snicker, in a lot of '30s and '40s pictures. I sometimes find his one-note act grating, but here, his character, a friend of Sullivan's, shows another dimension - a sensitivity to Sullavan's position by not judging, but sincerely trying to help - that argues he had more acting depth than the studio system usually allowed him to display.
     
  18. Bushman

    Bushman My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    Mrs. Doubtfire. It's been so long since I'd last seen this one. It's still as funny and heartwarming as the first time I ever saw it.

    RIP Robin Williams. :(
     
  19. Trenchfriend

    Trenchfriend I'll Lock Up

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    "Les Diaboliques", 1955.
     
  20. belfastboy

    belfastboy My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    Phantom Thread...Daniel Day Lewis's last picture. Strange movie, weird ending, totally unsympathetic characters yet strangely compelling. DD Lewis is always worth a watch....perhaps the best actor of this generation. I cannot say I have ever seen anyone better at total immersion in the character. He embodies the characters so well in the physical sense without reverting to the M Streep school of affected tics and mannerisms that she excels at affecting to the point of not being able to watch the character but just observe M Streep put her tics on top of the character. DD Lewis embodies the character.....and for that reason worth a watch.
     
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