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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 01, 2007 - 02:29 pm:   

new thread
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Huw
Posted on Monday, January 01, 2007 - 06:48 pm:   

I'm ashamed to say it must have been my morbid curiosity (as to whether the film could really be as bad as I'd heard it was) that got the better of me when I rented Pulse. God, it really was heinous - a film made by people who obviously are of the mind that loads of CG effects and sudden jolts in the soundtrack make a successful horror movie.

Thanks for the prayers - I need all the brain cells I can hold on to! Although I fear I am already doomed after watching both Pulse and Boo in the last month...
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 01, 2007 - 06:54 pm:   

"... people who obviously are of the mind that loads of CG effects and sudden jolts in the soundtrack make a successful horror movie."

You mean, everyone in Hollywood?

Boo and Pulse in the same more -- one more like that and you'd have needed therapy.
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PM
Posted on Monday, January 01, 2007 - 07:29 pm:   

I saw the Punisher and Ladykillers in a theater on the same day...and folk used to complain about Ishtar (which I also saw in a theater)...
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 07:33 am:   

I watched I'm Alan Partridge last night -- pretty damn funny, especially the episode about the infomercial made for the boat movie...All in all, pretty great.
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Mike McLatchey
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 09:14 am:   

Got to see the Little Britain Christmas special over the weekend, hilarious stuff. Also watched Herzog's Nosferatu, a little curious to see how the Popol Vuh soundtrack worked (I actually liked the incorporation of Wagner better). Kinski was very creepy and the film oozed atmosphere, but I thought some of the acting to be poor and laughed when some of the obvious plot cues had to be told and not shown.
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 10:23 am:   

The boat movie episode is my favorite: "Dr. No...vocal cords!"
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Huw
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 10:29 am:   

Anyone here watched Garth Marenghi's Darkplace?
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 10:37 am:   

Yeah, that guy was hilarious.


Darkplace...Nope, haven't seen it.
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 12:17 pm:   

Yes, Darkplace is awesome.
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 12:20 pm:   

Here's a taste:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fIWEVoWOt8M
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 02, 2007 - 06:14 pm:   

Man to Man is just ponderous. I wish it were funny. I tried to watch a few of them but they don't take off. However, in the first episode he interviews his old pal Garth Marenghi and they have a clip from one of Garth's movies, and it is funny. But it's only a few minutes of funny. And it's here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VJCOgTQv4k
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Huw
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 02:01 am:   

Thanks for the link, Marc - that's a funny clip. "That's for all the times I've tried to drink a can of cider in the park" - Haha!

I wish they'd make more Darkplace.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 07:36 am:   

Friday MOH: Jennifer on the Stairs...Weak, very weak. I am anxiously looking forward to We All Scream For Ice Cream with Billy Forsythe this wknd.

On tap at Cinema Dave, a double feature of MARIA FULL OF GRACE and SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE with a Sunday! Sunday! Sunday! matinee of Seagal's new ATTACK FORCE.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 07:40 am:   

Seagal..I'd forgotten about him.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 08:15 am:   

His new one is supposed to be his all-time worst. I can't wait.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 08:24 am:   

His all-time worst? Worse than Submurged? That sounds pretty impressive, there are so many bad ones that he'll have to top. I have a soft spot for his first few films, but he's been in a lot of really bad films over the years.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 08:30 am:   

I think Dave is a connosieur of cinematic disasters.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 08:58 am:   

Even the dubbing of someone else's voice is poorly done, so I hear.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 09:22 am:   

Attack Force (2006) (V)
Attack Force Directed by
Michael Keusch

Genre: Action / Drama / Sci-Fi

Tagline: Humanity's greatest hope... Faces his greatest battle.

Plot Summary: Marshall Lawson loses his strike-team in a cold-blooded and seemingly random attack. After this he takes... (more) (view trailer)

User Comments: I can't take it anymore (more)

User Rating: ***_______ 2.7/10 (358 votes) Vote


Also Known As:
Harvester (USA) (working title)
MPAA: Rated R for strong violence, language and some sexuality.
Runtime: Australia:94 min
Country: USA
Language: English / English
Color: Color (Kodak) / Color
Certification: USA:R / Finland:K-18 / Australia:MA

Goofs: Continuity: Flipped shot: the large cut Lawson inflicted on the Queen moves from the left side of her chest to the right side. (more)



User Comments:

4 out of 4 people found the following comment useful:-
I can't take it anymore, 11 December 2006
1/10
Author: comblitz from Florida

drss1942 really took the words right out of my mouth. I loved Segal's early films and feel like the only one who is still faithful to him. I just saw this movie (ok, fell asleep about 90% through, so I didn't see the end). When I woke up and saw I was at the DVD menu, I was thankful I didn't subject myself to any more of that movie and didn't dare find out what happened at the end. There was something strange about the voice of Segal and others. Kinda reminded me of the original Mad Max where the voice were dubbed, but in the same language (Australlian is English, right? :-) Anyway, if I had 10 thumbs, they'd all point down right now for this Segal injustice.

Was the above comment useful to you?
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 09:38 am:   

read teh reviews on amazon. Most say it's the worst Seagal ever--some mention Submerged in a comparably favorable light.

The average reveiw is about 1 and half stars.
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 09:57 am:   

Idiocracy DVD, next week:

http://www.amazon.com/Idiocracy-Luke-Wilson/dp/B000K7VHOG/sr=8-1/qid=1167844058/ ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/103-6074047-7086230?ie=UTF8&s=dvd

Spirit of the Beehive is on the top of my list of movies to (a) get from Criterion and (b) watch again.

I got partway through ELEMENT OF CRIME last night and gave up. Some cool imagery, but not enough else to keep me going.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 10:25 am:   

Good news. Just heard that The Host will be out on DVD earlier than expected, around the 7th or 8th of this month.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 10:44 am:   

Tjat is reat news. Yay.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 10:53 am:   

Hey, SUBMERGED wasn't THAT bad. At least it had Vinnie Jones in it.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 10:59 am:   

Just want to advise anyone who has not yet seen THE DESCENT to invest in the DVD...It repays repeated viewing...Certain subtleties (like the infidelity subplot) that were swallowed up by the vastness of the theater are easier to enjoy now, and the proper ending is 300% better than the wussified US theatrical ending.

Interesting how Neil Marshall tries (unconvincingly) to explain the bowlderized ending in a bonus feature. He seems to be shovelling the sh** pretty hard, trying to avoid offending the MPAA and Lions Gate. I'm not convinced and neither will you be.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 11:48 am:   

I've gothe Descent DVD, Brit version, and I agree, it's worth revisiting.
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Huw
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 12:31 pm:   

I noticed a newish Seagal movie on the television the other day, and it was incredibly bad: they had a stuntman who looked nothing like him doing most of his fight scenes, doing somersaults and bouncing of furniture like a lemur. Another thing that made me laugh was the sudden change of scenery that would take place within the same scene: one second there's a blue wall behind him and his trademark sweaty, squinty face, and the next moment it's a completely different room!
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 12:36 pm:   

that's steve's signature, man, not a break in continuity.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 01:08 pm:   

He's so fast that his movements actually alter the wavelength of light emanating from the walls. That's why they film most of his fight scenes in near pitch-blackness. :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 01:15 pm:   

That and his goiter... :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 01:24 pm:   

Anyone heard anything about The Number 23, this thriller in which Jim Carrey plays a family man and a sax-playing detective. It supposed to be serious movie. I don't know why I still care about Carey. Maybe it's because I saw him in a made for TV movie before he got famous and he was vey good.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 04:47 pm:   

It appears AMC is planning on doing a new Prisoner TV show
http://www.tvguide.com/News-Views/Interviews-Features/Article/default.aspx?posti ng={0F44A3FD-71B2-4A19-8D27-4BACE4F4CD74}

(copy the whole URL, including the curly brackets)

My first impression is that they new version will suck. However, McGoohan is apparently involved, so perhaps it won't be a total waste.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:01 pm:   

I'm just down on remaking classics on principle.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:24 pm:   

Well, at least they're having a Brit write the show.
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:27 pm:   

i'm kinda down on remakes. never seems much of a point.

that new segal movie, however... there's something that might be worth a few dollars of rental. fortunately he doesn't get any cinema release out here no more. :-)
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Huw
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:34 pm:   

How about a remake of a Seagal film, directed by Uwe Boll? Can't fail with that kind of recipe...

Seriously though, the state of cinema (particularly Hollywood) today depresses me to no end. I don't get the whole remake mentality. It's all so unimaginative and lazy. There are so many good stories out there yet to be adapted, why not work on those?
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:43 pm:   

You're preaching to the choir, man. We been singing that song for years.

WHy? Because the imaginative people in Hwood are all out of work and the bean counters rule and Hwood can now make money by churning out shit movies and still make a profit on DVD sales.
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:44 pm:   

Hollywood is unimaginative and lazy...and those are a few of the better qualities!

I hope the writers go on strike and maybe everyone else too!

If that were to happen (which it won't for any period of time) then maybe the noir films would be rereleased. That's all that's needed...no wannabe remake. Just rerelease the original and send the talent to say Dharfur...
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:45 pm:   

Christopher Nolan is also working on a Prisoner remake. Doing remakes must be a new circle of hell.

I'm just glad it's The Number 23 and not The Number 37, in which case I would have to go after them. 37, for me, displayed all the properties attributed to 23, but is I feel more malevolent...more deliberate in its appearances.

Keanu Reave's lunch ticket in POINT BREAK: #37.

And that's only the beginning...
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:49 pm:   

Wow! Heavy!

:-)
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 05:49 pm:   

I wish the Dog Whisperer could exercise some creative control for the movie making process...
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 06:18 pm:   

I remember reading that movie studios are reluctant to make big movies unless they have a built in audience. Things that have built in audiences: sequels, adaptations of popular books, and remakes.

I'm not completely against remakes. Tales have been told for millennia and adapted to suit the audiences of the time. My problem isn't that stories are being re-told, it's that the re-tellings are absolute shit. Also that remakes and adaptations make up the majority of what is released. New stories or slightly different takes on old stories aren't made into films very often.

There are a few remakes, or re-adaptations, that have worked. Batman seems to be adapted to fit the times, with the original 60s film, then Tim Burton's film fit the spirit of the late 80s. Now Nolan's version fits today.

John Carpenter made a more entertaining version of The Thing. Peter Jackson did a much better job adapting Tolkien than Rankin & Bass or Ralph Bakshi. I enjoyed Sci-Fi's version of Dune, unlike David Lynch's. And their Battlestar Galactica was much better than the original show. It's projects like those that prevent me from completely writing off the Prisoner revival, although since the vast majority of remakes are crap, my expectations are really low.
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 06:30 pm:   

While I get the "built in audience" argument is it really true?

I have zero interest in a Prisoner remake. Maybe it will be great but I could find myself being much more enthused about something else...
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 06:47 pm:   

Technically, you can't consider Jackson's Rings a remake, I really didnt care for Burton's Batman, and I thought Nolan's was marginal, but they were better than the Adam West things--which was done strictly for laughs. The Thing is the only true remake I liked -- though I didn't see the first two versions of The Painted Veil. Most remakes bite.

As far as built-in audience, all you need to so is look at the box office for Scooby Doo.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 07:25 pm:   

When it came out, I liked Burton's Batman, but it didn't age well. Now I can't watch it. I wonder if the same thing will happen with Nolan's Batman.

For some reason, studios used to think video game adaptations had a built in audience, but most have bombed. Did the studios finally get a clue when they cut funding for Halo? Nah, I'm sure they'll do another crappy video game adaptation soon enough.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 07:29 pm:   

Uwe Boll will, you can count on that.

But the studios probably will be another once they figure out how to write a script for one.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 07:43 pm:   

Did you ever watch the Tomb Raider movies? I think they demonstrate that you don't need a script for a video game movie.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 07:51 pm:   

Well, the tomb raider movies are horrible. I don;t get your point. I'm suggesting they take a video game and actually run the characters through a real (not too real) plot. Are you Laura Croft made money? Yeah, but most don't and thus my simple suggestion.
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 09:20 pm:   

Resident Evil 3 will make all your dreams come true :-)
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 11:00 pm:   

what i don't like about remakes is just how unnecessary they are. take the batman ones, for example. they're not bad flicks. but they're just so unnecessary. another batman flick... i mean, who cares? is it needed? not in the least. it just helps a franchise go round and round. burton and nolan can make good films--wouldn't you rather see them doing something original, than just being the latest soldier in the franchise?

i know what i'd prefer.
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 11:03 pm:   

I watched the whole extended LOTR trilogy over the last week, taking a break of a couple days between each film. It's the closest I've come to watching all in a row. When each DVD came out, I just watched the one. That made the proportion of farewells in the final film seem totally overblown. Having put it all together, it feels only slightly too long instead of unbearably long. The three hang together; I was amazed how well they hold up, actually. I always thought of the second as the weakest, but this time through it was my favorite. How hard it must have been to hold the whole production together; yet almost every scene has something amazing, or at least beautiful, in it. I was impressed all over again.
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 03, 2007 - 11:06 pm:   

That's what I mean, Ben. Nolan is capable of original thought and original films. The Prisoner was just fine, thanks. Batman and those...that's the fate of superheros...endless makeovers for each generation...movies as extensions of serial comics...okay, I can see it. But why do they put Nolan on it? If he's gonna get stuck in a rut, how about further development of the Christopher Priest franchise?
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ben peek
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 03:36 am:   

well, i dunno bout the priest franchise. i didn't mind the PRESTIGE, and i liked it more than the book, which i just couldn't swing into. but it hasn't left much of an impression on me, really. i keep waiting for him to do something cool like MEMENTO again. but nolan clearly isn't going to make a film like that if he's doing THE PRISONER or BATMAN... and it kinda irritates me when a whole bunch of people get behind those films, rather than something new. but then people, man, they irritate me.

:-)
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 05:09 am:   

I think you're overestimating Hollywood if you think they'll run video game characters through a plot. I'm just thinking they'll jump on another plotless video game movie as soon as another opportunity presents itself.

I do agree with Ben, I'd rather see Nolan do something original. As for Burton, I'd be happy if he just did something with a decent script.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 06:12 am:   

Oh, I'm not overestimating hollywood -- just offering a suggestion that would never be taken, so as to cut down on waste. There's not enough motivation for them to change their ways.

Nolan will never do another film like Memento...or maybe he will, like Phillip Noyce, see the error of his ways and go back to making interesting films, but you'll see a ton of crap out of him first.

I've seen both the Prestige and the Illusionist now, and they're both okay, but they were far from home runs. kind of dispappointing. Tomorrow I'm going to see Children of Men, the latest big woof. I hope everybody's right about this one.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 06:18 am:   

OK. I agree, there's not enough motivation for them to change.

I didn't like The Illusionist. It seemed like the ending was obvious from the first few minutes, there were no surprises in it. I wasn't surprised by The Prestige either. However, I felt clever by figuring out The Prestige, while I simply felt non-brain dead by guessing the plot of The Illusionist.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 06:27 am:   

I saw the extended LOTR over two days when Return of the King came out. It was better, but I still thought Jackson lost it in the last movie. Agreed, the trilogy was a monumental achievement, but most monuments are ugly and this was is no different. I agree that the second film improved the most, but the Return of the King was retarded. Horrible dialog, no sense of pacing, a compilation of battle scenes (as was the book), but Jackson needed to see the books' weaknesses. Frodo and Sam became a comedy act by the end, Miserable and Miserabler, and that dialog...Ugh.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 06:40 am:   

I was disappointed in the extended Return of the King. The added scenes were things fans thought were cool, but they didn't help the plot (and in the case of the Witch King/Gandalf fight, hindered the plot). I keep thinking I should get the theatrical cut, but then I realize I don't care enough.
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 06:52 am:   

I'm not against remakes per se, but given the "built-in audience" argument, why remake such old, mediocre, forgotten fare as "The Big Bounce" or "Fun With Dick and Jane"? Who is the audience for these remakes? Grandparents who were 30-something in the 70s? I mean, remaking KING KONG is one thing. Remaking OCEANS 11 or THE BOOGEYMAN is something else.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 06:53 am:   

Yeah, I was going to make that point, but forgot. ROTK should have subtitled the Fanboy Mix.


"I don't care enough...."

Totally.
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Darren
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 07:51 am:   

Well, LSU did me right. And so did the under 56 for a parlay.

Saban to Bama. Hooah!
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 08:09 am:   

Wrong thread, Darren.
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Darren
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 08:10 am:   

Oops. Sorry.:-(
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MarcL
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 10:15 am:   

Watched THE BLACK DAHLIA...thank god for fast-forward. It was awful, with some unintentionally comical performances. Having just watched TALLADEGA NIGHTS, I kept confusing the alcoholic wife with the same character Molly Shannon played in the Will Ferrell movie. There's a half-assed CARRIE shock vision at the end, just so you know you've seen a DePalma movie. Read Ellroy's praise for the film in the latest edition of the book for a laugh; he must have written it before the movie was even finished, since it came out at the same time as the film, and the film was clearly being patched together till the very last minute.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 10:24 am:   

Dahlia was horrendous. Josh Hartnet needs to rethink his career track and go back to doing farces.
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 04:56 pm:   

Your DVDs are in the mail. 'Still Life' plus 4 recent Korean flicks. 'The Host' is one... I put the Korean DVDs w/artwork inside a box for Polanski's Oliver Twist to make them look legit... don't be alarmed :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 05:01 pm:   

:-)

Thanks, Rich. I owe you a big favor. Did you watch still life?
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 05:51 pm:   

Yeah... I thought it was great. My favourite Jia.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 06:09 pm:   

Wow. That's pretty damn good.

You ever gonna get a computer for home use again? You decided where you're going? Kuala Lumpur?
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 08:00 pm:   

Sorry for the delay.. I'm posting between classes :-)

I'll be in Hangzhou until Chinese New Year (second week of Feb), then probably Kuala Lampur. It looks like the most interesting work... at a university rather than off-prem business courses (like I'd have to do in Hanoi).

If KL falls through I'll stay in China, but move to Qingdao on the east coast.

New computer in the budget for after the move.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 08:10 pm:   

I'd a been real tempted by Hanoi. Beautiful country around there. Incredible caves and little coves and stuff. And it's cool sometimes. In Malaysia I was never not sweating. :-)

Good on the computer...
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 08:27 pm:   

Do you speak Chinese?
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 08:36 pm:   

Hmmm... still time to change my mind...

Yeah, I speak a bit of Chinese. Enough to order food and say hello and goodbye. It's tough because everybody wants to practice their English when they see me.
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 08:42 pm:   

Someone mentioned 'Rabbit Proof Fence' upthread... reminds me that I saw a trailer for Noyce's new one called 'Catch a Fire'. Tim Robbins as a cop in Apartheid-era South Africa. Hear anything about that one?
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 09:10 pm:   

It wasn't as good as The Quiet American or Rabbitproof Fence. For one thing it had Tim Robbins in it as the bad guy, and he just didn't et the role. He was supposed to be a baddie with a soul, but he played it like he was a bad guy who was in process of reforming, which wasn't the case. Also it felt rushed. Sloppy. I did like that it had no white hero a la Blood Diamond. But I can't recommend it as much as I would Noyce's previous two films. I just got an old Noyce film, Newsfront, with Judy Davia and Brian Brown, made before he went to Hollyweird. It's supposed to be very good.
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 09:36 pm:   

Thanks.. I'll give FIRE a pass then and look for more of his older stuff. Gotta catch a bus.. good weekend.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 09:47 pm:   

See ya later.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 12:07 am:   

Watched Pan's Labyrinth tonight. It was very fine. I guess I'll have to live with the fact that Del Toro is two or three different directors in one skin. It wasn't what I expected at all. Less of the pure formless fantasy, more of the world it's grounded in. Overall a good balance. There's hope.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 12:16 am:   

I saw Badasss! or How to get the Man's Foot Out of your Ass the other night. Not a perfect film, but I enjoyed it...
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Huw
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 03:54 am:   

Rich, I know what you mean about Chinese people wanting to practice English. It still happens to me a lot (I'm just below you in Taiwan). Often I find people are surprised and really happy to hear a foreigner speaking Chinese, but occasionally you get someone determined to make you speak English and then it becomes a battle of wits and endurance to see who will give in first. ;-)

Anyone seen 'Curse of the Golden Flower'? It's out here but I haven't had the chance to go see it yet...
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 03:57 am:   

How in the heck did you get Pan's Labyrinth? Or is out in Seattle?

Brendan, is that the Van Peebles film?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 04:03 am:   

You know, I don't have any interest in Curse of the Golden Flower. These big budget wuxia are prettyand have excellent production values, but they're mostly empty. I'd prefer to go back and see a few more King Hu flicks. Have you seen a Touch of Zen or any of his films?
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 04:21 am:   

Lucius - Yup. Seen it?
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 04:25 am:   

It's Mario van Peebles film about his father making Sweet Sweetback's Badasss Song.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 04:34 am:   

No, I haven't seen it. I was thinking about checking it out, though.

I'm torn. I can either see Children of Men or a double feature of Perfume and Notes From a Scandal today, I think maybe I'll save the douuble feature until next week.
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PM
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 05:43 am:   

Don't know about Perfume...
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 05:46 am:   

What don't you know?
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PM
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 06:34 am:   

Don't know if it's going to be enjoyable.
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Huw
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 06:43 am:   

I don't think I've seen anything by King Hu - I'll have to have a look for A Touch of Zen. I don't know if I'll see Curse of the Golden Flower. One guy I know recommended it to me, but then he thought Hero was brilliant too (personally I thought it fit your above description of recent wuxia movies perfectly - nice visuals, but kind of empty). It seems everyone is doing wuxia these days (since Crouching Tiger, I guess): Chen Kai-ge, Zhang Yi-mou, etc. (I personally much prefer Zhang's earlier stuff, like Red Sorghum).

I remember a cool little wuxia-type movie I saw at the cinema back in the mid-'80s when I was studying in Taipei, called Run Away (I think: it was called Ce ma ru lin, in Chinese). When the same director, Wang Tung, made another movie called Ku Lian (Bitter Love) he came to our university department (Chinese opera and dance) looking for extras and picked my girlfriend for a very minor role. That's my minor claim to (2nd hand) fame in the world of Chinese movies... ;-)
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 07:23 am:   

Check out King Hu. He's got some movies that remind one of Jack Vance. Very rich and eccentric. A Touch of Zen is a good place to start, but there are a couple of others, whose names elude me, that are more Vance-ian. Marc mentioned one on these movie threads some time back. Maybe he recalls it.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 07:26 am:   

PM, I guess I'll risk it. How bad could it be--I've seen the work of Uwe Boll.

And you, Huw, have you seen the films of Zhang Ke Jia? A far cry from wuxia, but outstanding.
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Huw
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 08:04 am:   

No, I don't think I have, but Still Life sounds intriguing. I'll have to check the local video stores and see what I can find by King Hu, too.

I'm still looking for Red Lotus Society, by the way. No luck yet...
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 08:19 am:   

I've got a disk of Zhang Ke Jia's The World but haven't watched it yet. . .. Maybe I should.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 09:22 am:   

THE FATE OF LEE KHAN is the one King Hu I've seen, and it was, for lack of a better word, charming. It was like DRAGON INN with characters out of Jack Vance. I'd love to see more of his stuff.

A friend is a judge for some kind of awards board and had a screener of the Del Toro. When I saw it on his desk my eyes popped out and he took pity and let me borrow it for a night.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 09:51 am:   

I'm looking forward to PERFUME. It seems unfilmable but maybe Twyker has done something impossible.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 10:05 am:   

That's right. Lee Khan. Lucky you with the del Toro, but I'd still have to see it in theater anyway.

Brendan, the World is the one film that Zhang made with the aproval of the govt. THe previous three are better, but the world's still good.

Thanks for pereserving on Red Loutus, Huw.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 01:43 pm:   

Oh :-(....that sucks.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 01:45 pm:   

Hey, it's still worth seeing, but Platform and the rest have a rawer edge that appeals to me.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 08:51 pm:   

Saw Children of Men. It was very good until the absolute end, but its goodness mainly lay in the authenticity of the mise en scene, which is great-- a graffiti-ridden, crunbling, ultra-violent Britain, rife with detail--and the performances of the actors (especially Clive Owen and Michael Caine) and the great hand-held camerawork. Those things hid the idiocy of the basic concept underlying the plot. But in the end it turns into a Monty Python skit. Trapped in a hellish refugee ghetto, the girl delivers her baby in a building under armed assault by the army, with fire being returned by the rebels (the Fishies); and the baby is heard crying and then is seen as the mother goes down a hall taking heavy fire and the refugees all react with unanimous wonder and want to see, touch the child, some getting blown away in the attempt; the army sends in an assault tean, they too are dumstruck as are the troops outside. In the midst of chaos, they hook up with a woman with whom they stayed the previous night and she has a boat for them, and Clive rows them out to a buoy and dies (he's been walking around with a stomach wound taken during the assault--given the ordinance they were using and the devastating effect it had on other men, it would have dropped him) just as the boat comes up to save mother and child. It's kinda unbelievable and it made the the rest of the movie seem like a set-up for melodrama. Like a souffle that falls flat after cooking for an hour and a half, COM is rendered unpalatable by this collapse.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 11:55 pm:   

Well, sounds worth watching, for the good bits.

I was happily engrossed in THE DESCENT for the last few hours. Netflix sent the director's cut, unrated, which I guess was the European version...I guess I'll have to talk to someone who saw the American theatrical release to see what they did at the end. I don't want to spoil anything here. I liked it a lot.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 05:47 am:   

They apparently cut the movie right after she gets out of the cave; they didn't take her back in. Yeah, the Descent is really good--stock horror, but everything tweaked a bit so it feels new and better characters than usual.
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MarcL
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 09:33 am:   

Children of Men went from one theater to a bunch in the Seattle area this week.

I've been thinking about The Descent all night. I'm more impressed than ever. What a great mood they created. The making-of short was worth watching. I'm going to track down Dog Soldiers now.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 09:39 am:   

Yeah, it sticks with you. I didn't like Dog Soldiers as much -- it's played for laughs to some extent, but it was still pretty good.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 09:45 am:   

Lucius: I thought COM's closing scenes -- the ones you found melodramatic -- to be quite powerful. On the other hand, I agree that Owen's prolonged survival was unbelievable, but there was at least one other scene just as unbelievable. When Owen narrowly escapes with mother and child from the FISH gang, how could he not have been caught driving that lemon? The FISH gang couldn't have appeared more incompetent.

Technically, though, I agree that it's an amazing movie. And nobody in Hollywood, to my mind, does cyncial better than Clive Owen. Its bleak, post-apocalyptic setting, though, seems to owe a lot to movies like 28 DAYS LATER and camera style to movies like BLOODY SUNDAY (Greengrass) and, cough, SAVING PRIVATE RYAN's battle scenes.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:03 am:   

Well, Kelly, I was ready to love em, but I thought they were so bad as to be comical. I don't care what the circumstance, the survival instinct takes precedence over everything and that unanimous shock and awe just wasn't realistic. And surely some of the soldiers would have seen the child as a valuable commodity. And it made no sense that one street wowuld be filled with soldiers, and around the corner there'd be none--military operations in an urban setting simply aren't run that way--there's always a rear guard. Also it was pretty clear that a sniper had a good line of sight on the black leader of the Fishies--he wouldn't have missed all those shots. I could go on. Agreed about the escape, and the escape from the farm was just as bad. Didn't anyone think to shoot out a tire? Agreed, too, about the setting, but in speculating about a near future dystopia, there's a limited spectrum of extrapolation. I thought Cuaron, though he botched the ending, did a better job than anyone to date of thinking it through and showing it.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:32 am:   

Damn Lucius, you had to ruin my movie experience with logic. :-)

Yeah, it certainly made no sense that none of the British troops tried to abduct the baby.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:40 am:   

I didn't ruin it, I hope. I just was kicked out of the movie by all the kerfluffle and couldn't get back in.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 11:55 am:   

I found the bit with the complete and total silence and absence of fighting for a few minutes very believable. No one has seen a baby for ninteen years. I don't believe that regular soldiers and regular people would automatically think "commodity!! must grab it" immediately. The person who DOES try that takes a little more time to come up with that brainstorm.

Truces in war happen. Christmas truces happen spontaneously. The scene lasted a few minutes. I believed it.

Not knowing exactly where Owen was shot, I don't know how long he could have lasted but that's just a classic movie death. Believable or not--it's in tons of movies.

As far as incompetence of the fishes, yup. But I still liked the movie a LOT.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 12:09 pm:   

It was ridiculous. These are hard men, callous men, an anti-terrorist unit. The awe would have lasted a few seconds, no more, and they would have grabbed the child. They certainly wouldn't have formed an aisle to allow this miracle to pass from view. They would have coveted it for themselves. And they would have grabbed it before she left the building--they would have been ordered too. Sorry, Ellen. A few minutes is way too long. At the very least, they would have been pursued before they were out of sight.

Owens was shot in the gut. The rounds that were chewing up the walls were high caliber rounds. The shock would have dropped him and, if improbably he stayed upright, blood loss would have dropped him soon after. Being in tons of movies doesn't justify anything, because most Hollywood movies are crap.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 02:28 pm:   

Once more, we'll have to agree to disagree.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 02:40 pm:   

For me, if you believe in the basic premise of the story: that a young woman is pregnant after almost twenty years of non-fertility on the planet, I see no reason not to believe that the boat will show up at the end. It's a miracle or it's balderdash. Take your pick. But if you accept anything about the movie you might as well swallow it whole hog, which I did during the viewing of the film.

I cannot imagine a more depressing ending than if the boat did NOT show up. And who would want to go see something like that?
It's getting back to what movies are for: entertainment or something else. Many are one or the other, Children of Men manages to be both. I like my movies with at least a dollop of hope thrown into the mixture.

Also, it looked more like a groin than a gutshot to me. And since we have no idea which group actually shot him with which type of weapon, I'm willing to believe it wasn't a gun that would blow a huge hole in him that would kill immediately.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 03:08 pm:   

That's all fine, but this is a matter of common sense, not taste or disposition. Getting gutshot by an AR-15, and I have to assume the govt issue assault rifles in the near future are at least that powerful, would drop you like a rock. The pain would be enormous. Owen must have had great drugs. Anti-terrorist units are trained to be ruthless, relentless, and the officers would immediately suggest to their men that they take the female into custody. They might be reverent or gentle with her, but they would take her, 19 years without a baby or not. They would take her if for no other reason that they believed--and rightly so--that they are best equipped to protect her in that environment.

"For me, if you believe in the basic premise of the story: that a young woman is pregnant after almost twenty years of non-fertility on the planet, I see no reason not to believe that the boat will show up at the end."

I don't have a problem with her getting saved by the boat, but I DO have a problem with him getting her to the buoy and dying JUST as the boat arrives; with them turning the corner, twenty-five feet away from a major force, and finding no one guarding the rear and the woman showing up JUST IN TIME to save them. Etc. Cuaron creates a world that is volent, out of control, and messy, then he resolves things with a series of bullshit neat coincidences that would make a moose choke and amacks of a well-let's-tie-this-up-now attitude. I very much doubt you'd let me get away with kind of resolution in a story with a similar set-up. I don't mind hope in a movie, though I don't require it, but not at the expense of logic and common sense.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 03:20 pm:   

Why do you think he got gutshot by an assault rifle? We have no idea who shot him at what point (as I already pointed out above). Could have been the fishies or anyone else--with other, not as powerful guns (as I said above). I couldn't see clearly if he WAS gutshot--I could see the general area that he was bleeding from, but that's it. I agree, gutshot no--he'd be incapacitated. Other place in the where we could see blood, possibly.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 03:49 pm:   

Because the rounds coming into the building were being fired by the troops, and because the only others armed were the Fishies and they had assault rifles, too. The only one who took a shot at him was the black guy, and he for sure had an assault rifle. At that range, it would have knocked him over. Why gutshot? Because there was a spreading bloodstain on his sweater over the solar plexus area. I'm giving Cuaron the benefit of the doubt by saying it was a gut shot; a hit in the solar plexus would have taken out that bundle of nerves just beneath and probably been instantly fatal. Just getting punched there knocks the breath out of you and paralyzes you for a few seconds. All the weapons they showed in that film were .45s and up. If you get hit by a .45 in the arm, it takes you down. Now maybe some kid was sniping with a beebee gun, but since they didn't show any light-caliber guns or weapons that wouldn't cause massive damage (some assault rifles fire light caliber bullets, but they shoot bullets that tumble or expand and blow a hole in you the size of a grapefruit), I have to say that he'd be down in the dirt and screaming his ass off with any bullet that was incoming. One of the fugees at the house rather improbably had a deer rifle (I can't see the guards letting him bring that in), but a deer rifle has a lot of stooping power. So...

He wasn't shot in the legs or hips, because he didn't limp. I assume he didn't take a hit to the groin because he never cried out, and I think that would make you yell a bit. He wasn't shot in the arm because he rowed a long way. So we're left with the chest and the head as options to the gut, and since a shot to the head would have visibly bled, we can rule that out; since a bullet to the chest would have flattened him worse than a gut shot, I'm going with gut shot.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 03:51 pm:   

Plus, everyone you saw get hit with a bullet went ass over teakettle. Was Clive Superman?
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PM
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 04:21 pm:   

I'm doing my dramatic death scene now...though it could take years for me to actually go kaput :-)

Violence in movies is almost always completely unrealistic. It's done for the purpose of "looking good". If you punch someone in the face and send them flying five to ten feet then it's incredibly unlikely that the person is going to just get up.

And I completely agree on the gutshot. No it's just a visual metaphor for overcoming pain and adversity but in complete defiance with reality.

I suppose the good news is that if he's dead then he won't be in a sequel :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 05:13 pm:   

A sequel? Children of Anteaters? Grandchildren of Men? Or Children of Men 2: The Rebirth.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 05:37 pm:   

I fall somewhere between both of you, Lucius and Ellen. While watching the movie, I was swept up in the visceral, emotional punch of the thing. But, in hindsight, the more I examine the story line the more I discover inconsistencies and question marks. Like why did the Fishies find it acceptable to shoot into the car at Julianne Moore, even though the pregnant woman was in the back seat, but refuse to shoot into the car when Clive Owen was driving with the pregnant woman in the back seat?

And, in general, I don't think we should give movies free passes with the argument -- "Believable or not--it's in tons of movies." I think that's part of Hollywood's problem on a whole: we, the audience, continue to lower the bar. What happens? Flawed films like The Departed and COM, both admirable works, receive the hyperbole "best film of the year" (this year, the Film Comment poll, consisting of the snobbiest critics around, named Scorsese's flick #1!). And I hate that at the end of each year, Hollywood forces us to put all our eggs in one or two baskets. Rubbish is released year-round, then a few serious pics dribble into theaters before Oscar season. When these movies arrive, film fans are deprived, longing for any Hollywood film with an ounce of integrity.

Thus, COM arrives in our theaters proclaimed a masterpiece before we, the general public, even see it. Then when we do see it and detect its imperfections, it's almost too depressing to criticise it, to walk out of the theater feeling any disappointment. Hollywood, with its overall anemic product, practically forces us to like these end-of-the-year pics. Because if we don't like a movie like COM, what is there to like from Hollywood? (Very little, for sure.) Err...sorry for the rant.
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PM
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 07:25 pm:   

Kelly, if you want to be even more depressed then contemplate the decisions that allow only a few films to even be shown in theaters. Sure if you're in a few blessed spots: NYC, festivals, and the like then you have those choices. Otherwise all you have is shit.

But those choices as to what will be shown are being made for you.

Of course there's DVD but it's not the same...

As to CHILDREN OF THE CORN, I won't be amazed if it gets a remake...
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 08:18 pm:   

PM: That's too true. While more films are at our disposal than ever before via DVD, less are making it to the multiplexes outside of the major markets. It is quite depressing. Thankfully, multi-region DVDs, like The Host, have changed the way I approach viewing film. I see just as many highly anticipated films on DVD as I do in the theater. This past year I saw some of my favorite films, like the Pusher Trilogy and Lady Vengeance, on DVD because they weren't released in my mid-market Midwest town. Such is life, I guess.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 08:34 pm:   

I agree completely, man (though I don't agree that the Departed was admirable, but let's leave that aside). We're being persuaded to set the bar lower and every year it gets worse...but maybe we're getting resistant to the pressure. There were some kids sitting near me when I saw COM and when the Spiderman preview came on, one of them said, this is gonna suck, and his friends concurred. I felt like applauding. I find more than enough movies to watch; I have 70 or 8O unopened DVDs stacked beside me. Lots of viewing, most of it superior to anything Hollywood puts out.

Tonight I went to see Notes On A Scandal. Excellent acting by Dench, Blanchett, and Bill Nighy. But the real star was the script by Patrick Marber. It's rare to see a script so brilliantly concentrated and succinct, and you never see this conciseness in Hollywood. Dench should get the Oscar over Mirren. A fabulous performance that depicts the effects of loneliness on the human soul. Coool movie.
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ben peek
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 08:44 pm:   

There were some kids sitting near me when I saw COM and when the Spiderman preview came on, one of them said, this is gonna suck, and his friends concurred.

yeah, but they'll go and see that flick, i reckon, and therein lies the problem.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 08:47 pm:   

Yeah, maybe, but I'll take good signs where I find them. :-)
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PM
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:14 pm:   

Ahh Dench! She's really brought down a few Bond films and was horrid in the Chronicles of Riddick. Well sounds as though she did something dame worthy with Notes.

I agree Kelly that DVD is our hope. Lemming was a great example of something that would have never appeared at a nearby theater. Lemming is of course the DVD that Datlow refuses to watch :-)
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:15 pm:   

Because we find out later that they're deliberately out to kill her.

>>>Like why did the Fishies find it acceptable to shoot into the car at Julianne Moore, even though the pregnant woman was in the back seat, but refuse to shoot into the car when Clive Owen was driving with the pregnant woman in the back seat?
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MarcL
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:22 pm:   

Let's at least praise the genius of Hollywood's naif Grampa Moses, M. Night Shyamalan. I just watched LADY IN THE WATER because the buzz was so disorienting. I must say, the disorientation was perfectly matched in the movie. Some nice performances embedded in a matrix of pewp...some genuinely stirring stuff completely drowned in self-conscious twaddle. It's beyond twaddle. Twaddle that reaches new heights of twaddling. I can't recommend it, but I'm not sorry I watched it, because I have never seen anything quite like it; I have never cringed in quite *that way* before.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:23 pm:   

The pregnant woman?

The point is, Ellen, they risked the preggo's life when they shot Moore; they wouldn't risk her life when Owen was driving. And they didn't shoot out a tire, which wouldn't have harmed anyone because the car wouldn't start and was just coasting.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 10:58 pm:   

Yeah, Lady In the Water was suckage of the highest order, but it was way curious.
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Ellen Datlow
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 08:39 am:   

No, Lucius, Julianne Moore's character-- it was an assassination.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 09:00 am:   

I know. What he was saying was, why did they fire at the car, putting the pregnant woman at risk when they shot Moore, and then, when Clive and the woman were escaping from the farm, were they given the order not to fire because they would put her at risk. There's a vast inconsistency here.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 09:35 am:   

Thanks for clarifying my thoughts, Lucius.

I can understand how a viewer could overlook COM's inaccuracies. It's easy to get caught up in Cuaron's virtuoso directing, to get caught up in the moment of the movie. On reflection, though, the inconsistencies are inarguably there.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 09:44 am:   

Yeah, I can understand that. For me, the inconsistencies and outright flubs at the end were too great to overlook.
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PM
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 10:12 am:   

Perhaps it's a code of honor. No one wants to be the one who got it absolutely right.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 10:33 am:   

I don't think anyone gets it right, but there are a lot who get it absolutely wrong.
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PM
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 10:40 am:   

Don't know what I would do with myself if a Hollywood science fiction film actually got it right (i.e. no glaring plot problems).
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 10:46 am:   

You know, fuck Hollywood. Who needs 'em?
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PM
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 10:59 am:   

Corporate bunnies?
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MarcL
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 11:40 am:   

LADY IN THE WATER, I can't think of another movie I've seen recently that treats its audience not just as idiots, but as babies. Is it wrong to stare at tards? Because I stared.

I'm still going to see IDIOCRACY, but a friend of mine watched a bunch of it and suggested the reason it failed to get distribution is not due to conspiracy, but simply the fact that it's not very effective...not funny...maybe even outright awful. Jokes that looked good in the script (from what I've seen of that) are bungled and fall flat. That'll kill a movie far faster than satiric social commentary.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 11:55 am:   

Well, so much for Idiocracy, I guess. Too bad.

No, it's not wrong as long as they're actor tards.
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Huw
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 12:02 pm:   

Well, guess what I just rented earlier today, coincidentally: Lady in the Water! And this, coming fast on the heels of Pulse, An American Haunting, and Boo. I'm curious to see whether it's actually worse than Signs. Goodbye, brain...
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PM
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 12:29 pm:   

Can't understand why so many would even bother with LADY. I missed it and haven't missed it.

As to IDIOCRACY I'm sure the studio would have been more than happy to make as many bucks as possible. And so everyone all around will be unhappy that it turned out for the worse.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 01:02 pm:   

I tried to watch Lady in the Water during my last airplane journey but failed and ended up going for Talladega Nights.

Just watched a great Korean film called Samaria by Ki-Duk Kim. Definately worth getting a hold of.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 01:20 pm:   

Yeah, I've seen Samaria, seen most of Kim's work, except for his Buddha movie and one other. Samaria's a stand-out.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 01:24 pm:   

Yes, I liked it better than the other movie of his I saw, Spring, summer etc.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 01:27 pm:   

That's what I meant by the Buddha movie. Yo might want to check out 3-Iron....
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 01:29 pm:   

And when his new one, Time, comes out on DVD, try that one too.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 02:06 pm:   

Actually, Time is out--available from Yesasia.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 02:15 pm:   

Just ordered a British comedy featuring Timothy Spall, Bil Nighy, and Olivia Smith (Rushmore). I've never heard of it before, but with that cast how could it be bad.
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jk
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 02:50 pm:   

Lucius, have you seen Dark Portals-The Chronicles of Vidocq? French film with Gerard Depardieu directed by person who did visuals for films like City of Lost Children.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 03:08 pm:   

I saw a Vidocq movie, but I think it was just called Vidocq and it starred Depardieu. It had some interesting visuals, but I didn't think much of the movie. It played like G-rated comic book, basically.
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 03:39 pm:   

Don't order 'Time' Lucius, you already have it!
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 04:08 pm:   

Oh, Okay Thanks. Rich. I woe you two. :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 04:09 pm:   

owe.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 04:28 pm:   

Vidocq was the title, but the US version has the Dark Portal stuff thrown in. It was bad. The visuals just made it look like cut sequences in video games. Remember, it's from the guy who directed Catwoman. That's far more indicative of his work than his visual effects for City of Lost Children.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 04:43 pm:   

Did Catwoman actually have a director? :-)
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 04:52 pm:   

Saw 'Night Listener' with Toni Collette last night. She was good, but the movie was kinda weak. Started watching an old noir w/ Tyrone Power called 'Nightmare Alley' that looks real interesting. TP plays a psychic carny with a mean streak. Gotta finish watching that tonight.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 04:59 pm:   

Nightmare Alley's a classic.

Night Listener got terrible reviews. I didn't bother.
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MarcL
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 09:46 pm:   

I liked Ki-Duk Kim's Buddhist film, Spring &c., thought 3-Iron was okay, but THE ISLE is the one that stuck with me.

CHI-HWA-SEON and MEMORIES OF MURDER are my two favorites out of the few dozen Korean films I've seen. Actually, I'm going to bump CHI-HWA-SEON to the top of my list, as the most perfect of them--beautiful cinematography, astonishing action sequences of painting (!), fine historical backdrop, great characters and actors, and the sweeping scale of an entire life.
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MarcL
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 09:49 pm:   

Samaria (aka Samaritan Girl) is on Netflix. Moved to my queue! Thanks for the recommendation.
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jk
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 10:04 pm:   

Catwoman? Oh god, forget it. That's getting removed from the Netflix queue pronto.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 10:05 pm:   

The Isle was freaky, stylish, etc., but I certainly didn't enjoy it as much as 3-Iron. Chihawseaon and Memories are very different--I compartmentalize them in different areas. I think Kim Ki Duk will one day create a masterpiece of two. Maybe Time is one.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 11:06 pm:   

The Buddha movie was pretty good. It did have a certain Hollywoodness about it though. That is probably why it was so popular.
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Rich Patterson
Posted on Sunday, January 07, 2007 - 11:56 pm:   

I thought Kim's 'Bad Guy' was pretty powerful. About a (mute?) pimp who falls in love with a straight-laced girl he's kidnapped to work for him.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 05:42 am:   

I think Summer etc is among the least of Kim's movies, which isn't to say it's horrible to me, just not up to the rest. Bad Guy is very good. I don't recall the name of the lead actor, but he did fucking stoic to a turn.
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Dave G.
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 06:51 am:   

Watched MARIA FULL OF GRACE this wknd. I thought it was powerful and involving, but wasn't there some hype surrounding an "explosive" ending..? I thought the ending was a bit of a non-event. The letdown kind of spoiled it a bit for me. But I look forward to seeing more of Cat. Sand. Moreno.

Sunday night's folly was Seagal's ATTACK FORCE, a bravura display of incoherent filmmaking. Seagal is the commander of (natch!) an elite special forces unit butchered by a superhooker tanked up on an experimental drug developed by the army that turns people into super killing machines. Seems that someone has excaped into France with the formula and an elite black ops squad within the army (even more secret than Seagal's black ops squad) is just hanging back letting les Francais get addicted and observing what happens next. (I can't even believe I'm trying to make sense of this.) Somehow Seagal and his super-secret black ops protege, a hot babe, recruit a small army and take out the drug peddlars, who are led by a British guy in an Oasis haircut and a hot Russian chick in knee boots, a mini-skirt and a bustier, who of course, Seagal kills in slow motion. For sheer absurdity, awkwardness of execution (Seagal's voice sounds like it's dubbed by about four different actors) and WTF, ETBH make-it-up-as-you-go storytelling, this is far and away the worst of Seagal's films and well-deserving of the Talk Soup "Best Direct to DVD" Soupie award it was given this wknd.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 07:04 am:   

i didn't get off with MARIA -- maybe I've seen the story too many times before. I recognize it was a good movie, but I kept thinking I was watching an episode of Law and Order. Still, the most powerful Latin American film I've seen has to be El Norte.

So I'm getting that maybe you didm't enjoy ATTACK FORCE (who comes up with these great titles) so much?
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Dave G.
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 07:39 am:   

Even at his most inane, Seagal has always been able to exert a kind of weird fascination. He at least has managed to sustain interest until the next ass-kicking.

ATTACK FORCE was actually dull. People on the mspace "Sons of Seagal" group were talking about not even watching all the way to the end.

An action film can be sloppy, amateurish, inane, but it should never, never be dull. Am I right?
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Dave G.
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 07:45 am:   

The thing about MARIA was


[spoilers]





there were so very many opportunities for non-contrived, intensely dramatic plot twists. Imagine all the things that could have gone wrong and the danger and mayhem that could have resulted! Instead, Maria steals the drugs. Maria returns the drugs. Maria gets paid. Maria goes off and finds a job.

Could Joshua Marston have chosen a more boring storyline?
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 08:04 am:   

Yeah, well I think I'll skip that Seagal.

Re Maria, I think he was striving for naturalism, but yeah, somehow the story never seemed to get off the ground. Good performances, though.
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Dave G.
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 08:45 am:   

CATWOMAN does offer one good reason for watching...Halle in the suit. But with that limited appeal, you can catch it on cable for free.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 08:48 am:   

Even Halle in the suit wasn't enough to get me to sit through Catwoman on cable. I'll take a Uwe Boll movie over it any day.
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 12:55 pm:   

I think this will be appreciated here. A compilation of the best scenes from The Wicker Man.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6i2WRreARo
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 01:01 pm:   

Yeah, pretty special.

"Step away from the bicycle."
:-)
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 01:08 pm:   

If I'd known Masturbating Bear was in the movie, I'd have been there on opening day.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 02:31 pm:   

Well, you be able to savor it on video soon enough.

;)
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Huw
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 02:40 pm:   

Jesus - how many women does he punch in that movie?!
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 03:04 pm:   

'Tis Morris Dancing as it was meant to be!
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 03:05 pm:   

*it was = twas
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 03:21 pm:   

You have to remember it's a Neil "Women Are Vermin" La Bute movie.
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Dave G.
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 05:44 pm:   

That chick with the crazy collagen-gone-wild lips is NO Britt Eklund!!
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 05:48 pm:   

No bear would punch Britt Eklund.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 06:37 pm:   

True. Except metaphorically speaking.
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 08, 2007 - 09:12 pm:   

I'll bet they got a lot of outtakes of Cage saying, "I'd hit that--WHAM!!!"
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Dave G.
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 07:40 am:   

If Nicholas Cage ever punched Britt Ekland, I would fly out there and take him out myself!

Her little song in the original is maybe the greatest "gratuitous nudity" moment in postwar film history.
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jk
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 10:07 am:   

Except she had a body double from the waist down because her then boyfriend Rod Stewart wouldn't let her do a fully nude scene.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 10:11 am:   

Well, let's hear it for the body double! Rod Stewart...now making a living doing his Tony Bennet impression.
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Mike McLatchey
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 10:24 am:   

Btw for the Alan Partridge fans here, is the order of the series, Knowing me Knowing You and then the two I am AP series? In the last week, I've watched a few from each of these series. Must have been a big influence on Ricky Gervais/The Office. Reminds me a little of Curb Your Enthusiam as well, cringe while you laugh.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 10:28 am:   

Yeah, that's it. But the order doesn't really matter as to how you watch. I watched Alan Partridge first, and Knowing was still funny as hell.
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Mike McLatchey
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 10:55 am:   

Yeah I certainly had no trouble watching them out of order, I'm also wondering if there might be more than three series. One thing that really cracks me up is how they put that air bass guitar solo in the series 2 menu. And how he tells the punk group in the first ep of Knowing Me, Knowing You that Mike Oldfield, Jean-Michel Jarre etc could kick their asses. :D
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Dave G.
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 11:12 am:   

JK, you're kidding about the body double stuff, right???

Just bought IDIOCRACY, which got a good review in the Wash Post. Will report back with my sage observations.
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Robert Devereux
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 11:54 am:   

IMDB confirms the body double, but claims another reason:

She was pregnant at the time she was filming The Wicker Man (1973), and as a result, a body double had to be used for some of the rear shots during the sequence where her character is dancing around naked and singing in an attempt to seduce Edward Woodward's character.

Apparently her voice was dubbed in the film too. Was it just the singing, or all of it?
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Dave G.
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 12:16 pm:   

The body double was Lorraine Peters, billed as "Girl at Grave."
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 12:18 pm:   

Viva, Lorraine...
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 06:24 pm:   

Saw Children of Men today. Maybe I'll write more later. I had a borderline cynical reaction to the ending (nobody else with me did), but it hardly ruined the rest of the experience for me. The long takes are some of the most remarkable things I've seen in a movie for a long time. I loved it, even though I couldn't watch the first ambush sequence past a certain point...I don't react well to certain varieties of onscreen blood and violence, especially not when combined with shakycam. I'll watch it again from the rear row of the theater. The people I saw it with were devastated. I think it's easy to forget, from the critic's point of view, how hard movies hit people. Viva Cuaron.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 07:34 pm:   

Death to Cuaron. The more I recede from that movie, the more I detest it, the more holes I see in it--so many I'm embarrassed to have overlooked them. It has a great set-up, but after the first fifteen-twenty minutes it's just a chase movie grafted onto a neat opening...and not a very covincing chase movie. I can't imagine anyone with any experience of the world being devastated. I think it's more of a group thing--people's reactions tend to be amplified by a group; they see one person reacting and they react too, whereas if they see it alone, it's more ho-hum. Movies should be seen alone if one is to gauge one's true reaction. The long takes are excellent. All credit to the cinematographer. It's terribly manipulative in the bad sense of the word ("Oh a little baby!"). Seeing it again seems like of waste of time to me, but hey...maybe you see something I don't.

I know how hard movies hit people--I'm not a critic, I'm a reviewer. Movies hit me hard. I tear up in a lot of awful movies and then feel stupid afterward. I'm sometimes devastated by movies. Dancer in the Dark, for one. But I never took anything from Children other a certain amount of tension that was due to the virtuoso camerawork more than anything.

Which leads to the question, is one's immediate reaction to a film more valuable than one's delayed reaction. I think not. A movie like Jindabyne stays with me much more than something like Children. All I retain of Children is Caine, the chaos of the mis-en-scene, and the ludicrous ending. Of Jindabyne I retain entire scenes, sections of dialog, the fierce realness of the emotions. Owen is charming, but his role becomes utilitarian. A group of people are mostly eager to validate or invalidate each other's impressions of a serious film. The movie becomes for them a social tool. Not wrong in itself, but it imperils, in my view, of a true judgment of the film in question.

In sum, I don't like COM very much at all.
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 08:26 pm:   

Yeah, I'm not even talking about the emotional content...I didn't buy that at all. The impact for me was largely on the visual/in your face level. Maybe it was just tension. Whatever I may think about it in a week or so, as a viewer there were a few moments that sneaked in past my guard. It's a good question re immediate reaction. I've responded strongly to many a movie in the theater; there are few that I bother adding to my collection because they haunt me. Virtuoso camerawork (and choreography) of this order is worth seeing again, for me, maybe in the same way you'd take apart a clock to see how it works.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 08:53 pm:   

I can see that and I liked the technical stuff, but it's just not worth it to me to see it for that alone. Maybe I'll feel different later on, but i want to steer clear of it for now ...

I'm watching Knowing Me, Knowing You. Pretty cool.
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 08:54 pm:   

having an Abba moment here :-)
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S. Hamm
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 08:58 pm:   

Anyone seen Steve Coogan's series of Hammer parodies, DR. TERRIBLE'S HOUSE OF HORRIBLE?

"Surely you're not telling me that a man of science, in this day and age, actually believes in such creatures as vampires? . . . and lesbians?"
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 08:59 pm:   

Abba? In reference to what?
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:03 pm:   

Haven't seen Dr Terrible. Worth it?
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:07 pm:   

Knowing Me, Knowing You is an Abba lyric.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:08 pm:   

oh. i'm unfamiliar with their lyrics.
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:15 pm:   

I'm a bit surprised that you're not hating Abba on the other thread.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:18 pm:   

I would, but I refused to listen to them.
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:28 pm:   

If you ever listen to them then their lyrics may just burn into your brain. They have that power...
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:31 pm:   

I haven't seen Dr. Terrible or Knowing Me. Riches in store!
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 09, 2007 - 09:40 pm:   

Speaking of funny Hammer tributes, I still haven't watched The League of Gentlemen's apocalypse movie, which premiered along with the London subway bombings. I don't know if it's had a US release. For that matter, I never saw the second season of that show, although the first is one of my favorite things.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 07:13 am:   

IDIOCRACY was not the gut-busting cult classic that I had hoped. Although it had its moments -- particularly an opening sequence that showed a smart couple dithering over having children while a white-trash family multiplied furiously -- it did far less with the material than one might have thought, attacked easy targets and let others off the hook. Have to admit I enjoyed the skyscraper with a big clock on its side stuck flashing on 12:00. Luke Wilson isn't too interesting and Maya Rudolph is underused. But you do have to give style points to a movie where the idiot's usage "utilize" becomes a moron's euphemism for "screw."

The future-as-lamebrain-dystopia motif was done much better in the rarely-seen THE DARK BACKWARD with Judd Nelson and Bill Paxton.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 07:14 am:   

I guess I have to track down Dr. Terrible. Finished with Knowing me, Knowing you, and liked it well enough, spots of brilliance, but I preferred I Am Alan Partridge.

I saw Apocalypto a few days back. It struck me as pretty good bad movie, good acting and visuals, but all mounted in the service of a boringly twisted viewpoint. That and the fact it was entirely wrong about the Mayans make it a bad flick, in my book, but it's an entertaining bad movie.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 07:16 am:   

Thanks, Dave. Luke Wilson is pretty much always uninteresting. Sorry it was a letdown.
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Mike McLatchey
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 10:11 am:   

I lived in England in the late 70s, so unfortunately I get all the Abba references in Knowing Me, Knowing You and there's a lot of them. In fact the only music I remember from living there is Abba and Pink Floyd "The Wall." Not good.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 10:19 am:   

:-)
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 12:15 pm:   

Rats...the Netflix DVD of DOG SOLDIERS arrived cracked in half. I see they've sent GINGER SNAPS out. I remember reading good things about that on this board.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 12:25 pm:   

Actually, it's all right and GS2 is better. Too bad about Dog.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 01:23 pm:   

Just saw the movie The New World. God what a boring piece of crap! Literally the worst movie I have seen in probably about a year - well at least considering the movies I actually sat through.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 02:44 pm:   

Actually both GS sequels are good. I like GS2 for the really creepy little girl character "Ghost." GS3 is the most expensive and elaborate of the three, and not bad either, but lacks the zip of 2.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 03:09 pm:   

Yep, I agree.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2007 - 11:48 am:   

FYI, I recieved a shipping confirmation today for The Host. Rejoice!
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2007 - 12:09 pm:   

Yay!
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Jeffrey Ford
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 06:27 am:   

Brendan: I really loved The New World. I think it was my favorite movie I saw last year, but I've talked to quite a feel people who feel like you do about it. I dig all that wind blowing and water running and the slowness.

Lucius: Have you talked about Tears of The Black Tiger? Did you see it?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 07:35 am:   

Yeah, I have a DVD. It wasn't deep but it was shallow. I 'm just not a big fan of Asian comedies, especially one that's intended as a pastiche of Sphagetti Westerns and Bollywood (which is itself a pastiche already). It has some fun moments, but I was ready for the movie to end long before it did. Regarding Thai film, the only comedies I've liked are black comedies like Pen-Ek Ratanaruang's Last Life in the Universe. But I'm sure that people who're more open to comic melodrama on film than I would enjoy Tears of the Black Tiger. Just not my cup of tea.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 07:40 am:   

Jeff: Maybe you saw it in the theatre where the visuals were able tow work better then on TV? I read lots of good stuff about and that is why I decided to see it, so obviously I am in the minority.....
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 07:43 am:   

I know that TEARS has been picked up for an '07 US release (probably straight to DVD). Also, director Wisit Sasanatiengs's follow-up to TEARS, CITIZEN DOG, just came out on an all-region Hong Kong disc. I've been tempted to buy these films. There's a lot of (dubious) fanboy praise about Wisit being a "visual genius." His new film is a ghost story called...THE UNNAMED, maybe?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 07:48 am:   

Brendan, did you like it?


Me, I'm just more ethnocentric where comedies are concerned. I suppose it's a failure of mine.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 07:53 am:   

Speaking of THE NEW WORLD, no, I hated it. The other films y'all are talking about I haven't seen.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:15 am:   

I was referring to Tears of the Black Tiger.
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Jeffrey Ford
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:28 am:   

I haven't seen Tears of the Black Tiger. I was just reading an article about it this morning in the Times. They have a video clip.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:32 am:   

You can buy it on DVD for cheap. I expect Netflix et al will have it.


Did you ever watch the Descent?
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:36 am:   

No, I have it amongst a bunch of films to see, but haven't yet. I like all sorts of comedies but a certain amount definately tends to get lost in badly translated subs.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:38 am:   

Supposedly, the current DVDs for TEARS are butchered versions.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:41 am:   

Butchered? How long is the film supposed to be?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:46 am:   

Well, butchered version or not, the premise of film, a send-up of the sphagetti western and Bollywood, didn't do much for me, and I don't expect I'd like a perfected version of the film that much more.
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Kelly Christopher Shaw
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 09:10 am:   

Dave: I don't know the specifics, only that the release of TEARS on R1 is being heralded as some kind of minor celebration in the fanboy world (i.e sites like Twitch), because until now there hasn't been a decent, non-cut, subtitled disc available.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:18 pm:   

Mango Yellow, a Brazillian film set in one of the favelas of Recife, is sort of what City of God might have been like without the overabundance of violence and the visual pyrotechnics--it is, by my lights, a superior film. It follows the stories of several guests at a fleabag known as the Texas hotel, and several patrons of the Avenida Bar, run by a pretty woman named Ligia, and several people who live nearby, including a philandering butcher and his born-again Christian wife. Its chaotic plot and faintly surreal flavor capture the rythms and taste of life in Brazil's northern cities. There are no killings, but there is bloodshed and guns are occasionally shown, but enough is shown to make of Mango Yellow a rich and satisfying experinence.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:25 pm:   

Pan's Labyrinth is now playing in downtown Bellevue, which is hardly a small university theater. I guess this means it has broken out. Is it anywhere near you now, Lucius?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 08:33 pm:   

Nope. But I have a DVD arrived today from a friend. However, I'm gonna wait and see it in the theater.
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MarcL
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 11:28 pm:   

Perfume is there too. And I still haven't seen Apocalypto. And I totally missed The Fountain at the theater, which was about the only place I wanted to see it.

I'm just not cut out for this.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 11:37 pm:   

Mango Yellow sounds cool. I love South American films if they are done well. Definately not enough good ones.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 04:33 am:   

Yeah, i had a couple of quibbles, one with the absolute ending, but it's very good.

Marc, believe me you didn't miss much with the Fountain.
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Sean Melican
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 11:34 am:   

I love South American films if they are done well.

Saying that, what'd you think of The Motorcycle Diaries? The scenery and portraiture was just amazing, but is it an accurate (albeit abridged, according to www.scribecentral.com/GLENDAVIDSHORT/2004/12/#000539) portrayal, or too much an idealized vision, either separate from or concurrent with the book?

I ask, because I know very little of Che, but he is an important figure in South American history.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 11:47 am:   

I think it was overromanticized. But that was to be expected.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 01:46 pm:   

Yeah, it was overromanticized to be sure, but I enjoyed it. I thought the same director's Central Station, or whatever it is called, was a superior film though.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 01:49 pm:   

Central Station's way better. I've got Salles' Behind the Sun, but haven't watched it.
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Huw
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 03:04 pm:   

Has anyone seen Paris Je t'aime, directed by Salles (among many others!)? I've just noticed it's on here, but it hasn't garnered very reviews, at least not on IMDB. The cast looks interesting to say the least.

I thought his Dark Water remake was so-so, but nothing like as effective as the original by Hideo Nakata. I still haven't seen any of his earlier films.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 03:15 pm:   

On the infinitely more poignant front, Walter Salles and Daniela Thomas paint a wrenching portrait of the gulf between a poor immigrant servant's (Catalina Sandino Moreno) experience of motherhood and that of her employer in "Loin du 16eme." "Bastille" is Isabelle Coixet's intensely bittersweet take on a man (Sergio Castellitto) about to leave his wife (Miranda Richardson) for his mistress (Leonor Watling).

That's a reveiw of one of twenty different segments by twenty directors. I don't generally like this sort of thing. Twenty directors sounds like about 15 too many.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 04:56 pm:   

Even more curiously, Salles is connected to On The Road, which is due in a couple of years.
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MarcL
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 06:18 pm:   

Nakata's DARK WATER is one of the finest psychological/ghost stories ever put on film. Still haven't watched the remake.
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 06:27 pm:   

Well, I didn't read the story. I thought the movie was okay, but nothing special. If it hadn't have been for what felt like a tacked-on ending and some weird un-Salles-like edits and the fact that Tim Roth's part was almost edited out of the film, I might have liked the remake a good bit more...
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Huw
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 07:45 pm:   

As well as being highly effective in terms of atmosphere and all-round creepiness, I thought Nakata's DARK WATER had a genuine emotional intensity seldom found in horror films. Hitomi Kuroki was superb and thoroughly believable as the mother. I've seen it perhaps five or six times now and it still gets to me. The first time I saw it was in a dingy little, soon to be closed down theater at midnight with about ten other people (including a couple who'd apparently decided it would be a good idea to bring their 8-year-old kid along).
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Lucius
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 08:33 pm:   

Maybe I'd seen too much J-horror by the time I saw Dark Water. Like I said, it was nothing special to me. Agreed, I found the atmosphere and creepiness and emotional intensity well-done, but the plot was transparent, and it was just a matter of what was happening finally happening. No real suspense, not even with all tha amosphere laid on. There are a number of people who feel as you, but I'm just not one of them. Maybe I'll try watching it again someday.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 12:02 am:   

Yeah, I have been looking forward to "On The Road". It might be a sell out sort of thing though as often happens when director's from other countries make films in the US.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 07:02 am:   

I think it all depends on the casting. If they miscast Dean Moriarty, it doesn't matter who the director is.
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Brendan Connell
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 07:37 am:   

I would guess it would be some big name actor.
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Jeffrey Ford
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 08:07 am:   

Here's some bad news I read today -- I Am Legend, starring Will Smith. Oi.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 08:20 am:   

Yeah, that's been out there. He would have been better for On The Road.
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MarcL
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 10:06 am:   

Re DARK WATER, I guess I don't mind a transparent plot in a classically configured modern ghost story. I thought the fragile emotional state of the mother, where ruthless attacks on her sanity were coupled with the other stuff, was very effective. It was like one of the best early Ramsey Campbell stories transposed to Japan. This seemed to me like a movie that would have a really hard time working in the US mode, where this sort of female character is just supposed to kick ass and move on. I'm interested to see how Salle worked it out, just haven't gotten around to it yet.

I enjoyed DOG SOLDIERS for what it was--grisly action piece, silly werewolves, totally predictable--Night of the Living Dead with soldiers and wolfen. The script seemed way above average for this sort of film, which gives me hope for Neil Marshall's future.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 10:19 am:   

Yeah, I can see that. Like I said, it may be that I just was innured to J horror by the time I got to Dark Water.

I'm very interested to see what Marshall does his next couple of movies. I'm gonna give him one fuck-up, because it's likely his next movie will be made for Hollywood. His fourth movie should tell the tale.
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MarcL
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 03:08 pm:   

DARK WATER stands out partly because there are so few good ghost stories in movies...especially these days. THE OTHERS, which verged on excellence, was absolutely lead-ballooned by a couple of ridiculous scenes with the caretakers that served no purpose other than to introduce plot holes and telegraph the ending. Cut those scenes and the movie works almost perfectly.

That could be another reason I enjoyed THE DEVIL'S BACKBONE as much as I did...its classic proportions.

Maybe someday BBC will do a miniseries of Aickman novelettes.

I've been happily recommending THE DESCENT all week to people who'd decided on the basis of the trailer that it looked awful. And they've all ended up loving it.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 04:24 pm:   

Well, maybe classic ghost stories don't do it for me, because I thought the Devil's Backbone was just okay, too. I guess I don't appreciate them as much as you and Huw.
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 06:20 pm:   

Fortunately, I'm wrong about Marshall. His next movie is a British sci-fi thriller called Doomsday.
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Huw
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2007 - 12:19 am:   

Blimey, Marc - are you sure we aren't related? Not only do we seem to like the same films, Robert Aickman and Ramsey Campbell are two of my all-time favourite supernatural fiction writers!
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2007 - 05:08 am:   

I think I smell a little magic in the air. :-)
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2007 - 05:20 pm:   

That was me, sorry. I'll light a match.
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2007 - 05:47 pm:   

Light two, why don't you.
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2007 - 10:58 pm:   

So, I didn't much care for Ginger Snaps. Is the second one very different? Way better, or more of the same?
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 06:03 am:   

It's been a while since I've seen them, but as I recall, I wouldn't bother if I were you.
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Dave G.
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 06:39 am:   

Marc, if you didn't like GINGER SNAPS, I doubt you'll like GINGER SNAPS BACK.

PAN's is playing DC at the designated E Street arthouse.

I saw and like Cuaron's CHILDREN OF MEN. I liked his art direction and his version of a post-apocalyptic Britain. My beefs with it were he didn't do enough with the collapsing-civilization concept. I mean, Clive Owen makes reference to the rise of flagellant cults, but Cuaron does nothing to show us how society is splintering apart. Also, I thought the story needed just a wee bit more closure, but that's the Hollywood cineplex guy in me. But overall, a taut, effective tale.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 06:52 am:   

COM. Eccch! A fraudulent crapfest with excellent photograpy, a simplistic chase picture with a plot full of holes. You want some more closure, a little more world-breaking-down stuff? How's this? That a movie this lame is getting so much praise and conning people into thinking it's worthy is clear sign of terminal brain decay on the part of the populace.
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Dave G.
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 07:46 am:   

What did you hate about it so much? Aside from the fact that everyone in England is too dumb to realize that this girl is eight months pregnant, or that she has a baby she never feeds or changes?
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Jeffrey Ford
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 08:18 am:   

I saw Pan's Labyrinth last night. While I was watching it, it didn't seem that remarkable, and I noticed a few places in the plot I didn't buy, but when it was over I had a very strong emotional reaction to it. I was very effected. Later, there were scenes that came back to me very vividly and things about the story I only just got. I'd like to see it again sometime, maybe in a year.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 08:20 am:   

The meodramatic conclusion, the ludicrous site of Anti-Terrorist unit all but lifting their rifles to form an arch as she walked along the aisle; the fact that Clive Owen carried a round from, likely, an assault rifle in his belly for a significant amount of time without ever letting on he'd been hit; the dichotomy between the terrorist attitude toward firing into a car where the pregnant girl was, first doing so without compunction when they were killing Moore, and second, not doing so when they had Clive Owen coasting downhill during the farm escape; the entire farm escape sequence; the concentration camp bit where they get rid of the nurse (unecessary character) and then have the soldier who's about to drag the preggo off the bus not butt-end Clive Owen...I could point out tons more, but why bother. Those alone make the movie a joke.
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Dave G.
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 09:08 am:   

I did wonder why a research project attempting to solve infertility and save the human race would have to go underground, but...Guess I've been suspending my disbelief for so long, I've forgotten how to use it!
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2007 - 09:21 am:   

Yeah, I was with the movie right to the end, but then the ending woke me up. And then, in the hours afterward, I strated thinking about it and sudennly there were all these ridiculous holes...

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