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Discussion in 'The Moving Picture' started by Amy Jeanne, Aug 5, 2007.
This was a fantastic movie. Cried at the ending, though.
I watched the documentary 13TH on Netflix. I recommend every one watch it. To see how the US's prison population has skyrocketed, and how it disproportionately affects black men and women...well, it was eye-opening, to say the least.
I tried to watch MIDWAY (2019). Tried and failed miserably. It was so hokey and disjointed. Couldn't even make it halfway through. My boyfriend and I were watching and I said, "Do you want to go for a walk because I am not into this movie AT ALL."
Agreed. It's incredible. I'm amazed it's as good as it is.
When the Last Sword is Drawn (2003)
This movie won 3 Japanese academy awards.
I've owned and watched 100's of Samurai movies..
This ranks with the "BEST". Highly recommend.
This movie takes place around 1869 and flashes forward and back 30 years. It' about the Shinsengumi"s Last Stand.
A.L.I.E.N, 2003 Director's Cut DVD on CRT TV. Brilliant picture, wonderful tone.
Murder is My Beat (1955) with top billing for Paul Langton and Barbara Payton. It's draw for me was director Edgar Ulmer. Looooow budget, but interesting. Good cop goes rogue to clear the name of convicted chanteuse. Only if you've an hour and seven minutes to kill...
Born to be Bad from 1950 with Joan Fontaine, Robert Ryan, Zachary Scott, Joan Leslie and Mel Ferrer
This melodrama on steroids tries, a bit, to be noir, but it isn't - it's simply and deliciously high-end soap opera.
Young (but still too old for the role, but so are all the men) Joan Fontaine, a distant niece of someone, enters a tight circle of several upper-middle-class San Francisco society people and proceeds to wreck all their lives with her pulchritude, smile and lies (and lies and more lies).
Wealthy scion Scott is about to marry pretty, poor and sincere Leslie until Fontaine plants doubts about Leslie's motives in Scott's head, all the while outwardly only complimenting Leslie to Scott. And this is Fontaine's stock-in-trade as she never says anything outwardly mean, but through lies and innuendos, always delivered with an unctuous smile, manipulates everyone with awful consequences.
Fontaine, who sets her sights on Scott's money, is sincerely attracted to not-rich novelist Ryan who is the only one who sees through all of her shenanigans, but oddly, he falls in love with her anyway. It's wonderful fun to watch him call her "faker" and "liar" throughout as she denies all, but knows he's got her number.
And like any inveterately lying, selfish woman, Fontaine isn't happy even when she gets what she wants - marriage to wealthy Scott, who loves her and treats her like a princess. No, she wants all that plus, let's just acknowledge it, sex with Ryan. With that difficult goal, Fontaine keeps piling up the lies and deceptions to the point that even she's getting tired. But credit to her, no one tries harder to keep all those balls in the air.
The rest of the movie is watching Fontaine's world fall down around her, which is, oddly, less satisfying than you'd expect. And keep an eye out for Mel Ferrer as a painter who delivers a wonderful performance as a Fontaine foil. He announces every scheme he has - mainly, to get people to buy his paintings - upfront and out loud. While Fontaine sweats over the secrecy of every one of her machinations, Ferrer enjoys his dissembling because he's so honest about it.
That's it - it's lies, deceit, broken engagements, affairs and failed marriages all provoked by one petite, pretty and half-nuts woman. It's a fine hour and a half of mindless entertainment backed up by solid acting from an impressive cast.
----------He's ⇩ got----------------------------her ⇩ number.
"From here to Eternity". Serviceable movie. Lancaster was good, Sinatra too, Monty Clift better by a half measure. The disappointment was the female lead....Deborah Kerr. Donna Reed was a hoot playing against type early in her career of a 'comfort girl" in a Honolulu bar. Not a fan of classic movies style of acting from the day and it seems more pronounced amongst the female actors. Watched "Reflections/Golden Eye" the other night and Liz Taylor was just downright terrible.
I agree. There's nothing wrong with her performance, but she has no chemistry with anyone in the movie so her character's fling with Sgt. Warden (Burt Lancaster) rings false. It's disappointing. I much prefer the budding romance between Prewitt (Clift) and Alma/Lorene (Reed); their chemistry feels far more natural and realistic to me, and therefore more interesting.
Possessions - Jeffrey Dean Morgan as father feeling guilty because of divorce, he has (unexplained) custody of the kids most of the time (two daughters). Young daughter buys strange old box in yard sale, turns out to contain a deomn, possession / exorcism ensues. Undemanding but entertaining take on The Exorcist scenario, though a less common touch is that it's a Jewish demon, so requires a Hassidic Rabbi to perform the execution. Cute ending.
Warbirds - 1945, an all-female USAAF Air Transport crew land B29 at its intended final stop, only to be recruited by a shouty, high-ranknig man and his team for a secret mission. Due to storms, forced to land on an island behind Japanese lines, discover many downed (but working) Japanese planes on island. It is revealed (most of) the Japanese were eaten by large, flying dinosaurs, which present the greatest threat to escaping hte island with the secret mission cargo - which turns out to be an atomic bomb. Made for TV, 2008 - hokey, but with actually pretty good effects, reasonable correct uniforms, and a lot of fun.
Don't Make Waves from 1967 with Tony Curtis, Claudia Cardinale, Robert Webber and Sharon Tate
This is one of many '60s "beach" movies that use silly plots as a reason to show pretty, nubile young women in bikinis. Okay, there's nothing wrong with the premise - maybe even a genius in its simplicity - but to work, the plot still has to engage you somewhat and not become beyond ridiculous.
As an aside, the original "beach" movie, Where the Boys Are, is actually not a classic beach movie at all as the plot, underneath the string bikinis, is serious and a bit dark. While the sexual concerns in Where the Boys Are aren't our concerns today, by the end, the movie takes a hard look at the downside of all the beach romping.
Don't Make Waves is decidedly in the silly, not serious, "beach" movie category, but manages to be an okay enough story for the first three quarters. It begins with a young man, Curtis, driving out West to make a new start in life. There he meets a kept woman (Cardinale) of the owner (Webber) of a successful swimming pool construction company. After forming a friendship with her, Curtis, oddly, ends up working for Webber. At the same time, Curtis falls hard for a bikini-clad beach girl, Sharon Tate, who's living with a beach muscle man (in the pic above, that's Tate jumping into her muscle man's arms).
Hey, it's a beach movie, but still, for 1967, the movie is open about people having affairs and sex out of wedlock, which the early beach movies were almost never doing. I chose to watch this one because of Sharon Tate, and only because I had recently seen Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which touches on Tate's life and inspired me to want to see one of her movies.
The movie is what it is (and, as implied, falls into goofiness in the last quarter), but Tate doesn't disappoint as a beautiful young woman with enough talent in a not-challenging role to show promise. Even after all these years, knowing Tate's sad ending at such a young age impacts your ability to just get lost in the movie. Unless you are really, really, really in the mood for a silly "beach" movie or, like me, you're curious about Sharon Tate, passing on this movie is probably the right choice.
We watched Scott Pilgrim vs. The World with the girls last night. Really fun take on a graphic novel about a young man who falls for a mysterious young woman, and who must do video game battle with her seven evil ex boyfriends, one of whom was in fact a girlfriend. (You were just bi-CURIOUS?! That makes me bi-FURIOUS!)
It is also unashamedly set in Toronto, Edgar Wright and the producers eschewing any attempt to set it in NYC or such.
"What is the website for Amazon.ca"?
Man Wanted from 1932 with Kay Francis, David Manners and Una Merkel
It's a mishmash of Pre-Code themes starting with a smart, hard-driving woman publisher (Francis) running a major magazine. And while it's noted that she's not the norm, she's also accepted for what she is with no inferences made doubting her abilities. For 1932, that is either ahead of its time or where the time was with our view today distorted by later movies ('34 and out), when the Motion Picture Production Code was enforced, which rarely allowed similar portrayals of women.
Within that '32 framework, a few more Pre-Code themes follow including Francis' marriage to a wealthy playboy who continues to pursue extracurricular marital activities, despite his sincere affinity for Francis. Pre-Codes are chockablock with wealthy people married to others they sincerely like, but cheat on anyway. Francis kinda knows and kinda looks the other way until she can't.
And the catalyst for her changing attitude toward her philandering husband is her newly hired secretary, Manners. In another Pre-Code norm, a male takes on a traditional female role and works under a woman. Additionally, Manners is handsome (out of Francis' league) with office gossip positing that his looks are the main reason Francis hires him as her secretary (like many men do when the roles are reversed).
Pause on all that for a moment: in 1932, a male secretary is hired by a hard-charging female CEO, in part, because he's good looking. Heck, combined with some other Pre-Code movies with similar setups - see 1933's Female where Ruth Chatterton uses her male employees as a stud farm, I kid you not - and had Twitter been around, #SheToo could have taken off.
Thrown into this mix is Manners' annoyingly loud and pushy girlfriend, Merkel, who's not smart, but has enough girl-radar to know that something is up with Manner and Francis. That's about forty-five of this sixty minute movie with the next step being everything - jobs, marriages and relationships - blowing up. After that, it's picking up the pieces and roll credits.
It's an entertaining enough movie, but the real joy is seeing a Pre-Code-movie world where women are smart bosses, men eye candy, marriages open and casual sex not proscribed. Also, the time travel to the 1930s - cars, clothes, offices and architecture - is pure fun.
Ad Astra, the recent SF film with Brad Pitt.
Really good production design and effects, but the story's a mess. It's essentially Heart of Darkness plus daddy issues, with out-of-nowhere action sequences that aren't essential to the story (a rover chase with Moon pirates! a distress signal stop at a science station with killer mutated mandrills!), and every damn thing that happens is telegraphed in advance. Is there any chance Pitt won't get to Neptune, and once he's there, not meet Dad (Tommy Lee Jones, wasted)? Is there any chance that Dad will agree to come back to Earth vs. "going down with the ship"? Good actors and a huge budget can't save a bad story.
The worst prestige-production SF film I've seen in years. Not recommended.
^^^With a little Apocalypse Now mixed in also.
Yeah, of course... but that was derived from Heart of Darkness too.
As someone who absolutely loathes sport, it's fascinating how sometimes an ostensibly sport-realte film can really capture the imagination if it really sell the human story. Rush springs to mind there, though the bwest of them remains The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner, still one of the most powerful endings to a film I think I've ever seen.
I'm intrigued to see it. I loved the original, which I saw before reading the book. Of course it doesn't come close to the book - King legendarily hated it (though his later made for TV version is regrettably forgettable). This time, I did read Doctor Sleep when it came out; when the film filters down to 'included with Prime' or Netflix, I want to see it. I've heardmixed reviews, though people familiar with both media seem to think it's a reasonable compromise at being a sequel to both the book and the Nicholson film.
I saw that first in the cinema, and was quite disappointed - thought maybe I was missing something with regards to the source material. Saw it again on tv a coupel of years later and enjoyed it more (still never seen the source material) - I think it might be oe of those rare films that simple works better on the small screen.
Thanks...I never knew!
Clash by Night form 1952 with Barbara Stanwyck, Paul Douglas and Robert Ryan
This well-done soap opera benefits from its A-list talent, A-list director (Fritz Lane), wonderful sets (plus some on-location background shots) and a solid story.
Frustrated and deflated by a failed love life in New York City, dejected daughter Stanwyck returns to her fishing-industry-dominated hometown to, what, start over, recharge her batteries, quit all together? We don't know, but that she couldn't get out of the town quick enough years ago or hates returning now is pretty clear.
Enter salt-of-the-earth fisherman (pun intended) Douglas who offers Stanwyck a lifeboat - a sincerely good man who'll provide a good home - but not what she really wants. To her credit, Stanwyck tells Douglas, before she marries him, this might not work as, she says, I'm not the good-wife kind of woman. But they marry anyway, have a daughter and seem to be making it work until...
Enter Ryan, a tall, good looking, angry-at-the-world, separated-from-his-wife man who is Douglas's friend and the fire that's been missing from Stanwyck's domesticated life (and libido). From here, it's waiting for the inevitable to happen and then seeing how, afterwards, the pieces get picked up, or not.
There's also a couple of side plots: one is a by-the-numbers story about Douglas' alcoholic father and the other focuses on Douglas' brother's relationship with a local cannery worker girl who is - get ready for it - an incredibly young, pre-mega-stardom Marilyn Monroe.
Marilyn looks fantastic here (director Lang does his best to find reasons to keep her as unclothed as possible) and her acting is good in a role perfectly suited for her. Whenever I see these early Marilyn efforts, I always think that, with a little luck, she could have had a better career and life.
Clash by Night is a solid movie with a good story and talented actors, but nothing more.
Cannery Row worker Marilyn Monroe (wearing more clothes than usual in this one):