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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 01:48 pm:   

   By Robert on Monday, January 02, 2006 - 03:37 pm:

I saw a bunch of rubbish over the holidays. Alexander was the worst of them. The epic battle scenes were the most dull ones I've seen in recent memory. I'd rather watch Troy again, and that was very bad, but everything about it was better.

It wasn't all crap that I watched. I enjoyed An Ideal Husband. It was a pretty good adaptation of the play.

Silencio Roto was good as well. It was a drama about a small town during the Spanish Civil War, and the conflict between those loyal to the government and to the rebels.
   By Dave G. on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 06:42 am:

Okay, so I figure before I watch BLACK DAWN, the brand spankin' new Seagal, that I will watch THE FOREIGNER, the previous "Jonathan Cold" thriller that BD is supposed to be a sequel to. TF has to have the most convoluted, nonsensical, disconnected, unintelligible plot in recent history. Unreal. I can't begin to do it justice, something about a battle to possess the flight recorder of a plane shot down by an industrialist running a secret bioterrorism weapons program or whatnot. Just awful. Why they would want a sequel to this is beyond me. The good news is that BD was at least semi-coherent, capable of being followed by a viewer of average intelligence. Decent suspense, good explosions, no jive talk and a minimum of silliness. One of his better direct to DVD releases. Still, it's disheartening to see that he quite obviously does not do any of his own fight scenes anymore. The rather clumsy editing made this clear.

I know he's the busiest guy in show business, but why doesn't he just take a few months off and get himself back into fighting shape? He's not that old...I mean, it's not like he's going on Celebrity Fit Club 3 like his ex-wife...

Also watched Les Blank's BURDEN OF DREAMS and WERNER HERZOG EATS HIS SHOE. BOD was a fascinating look at what seemed like an almost insurmountable task. I'd place it right up there with HEARTS OF DARKNESS in the movie-about-making-movies category.
   By Lucius on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 07:25 am:

I hear Seagal's in the cast of next season's the Biggest Loser. Black Dawn sounds palatable.
   By Lucius on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 07:42 am:

Glad you saw Broken Silence, Robert. I liked it, too.

Dave, I saw the Foriegner on USA. I think it may have worked better with commercials.
   By Dave G. on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 08:27 am:

It could not possibly have been less coherent, even with the constant interruptions. It was almost an exercise in surrealism.
   By Lucius on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 08:32 am:

Yeah, but the Pop Tart ads made it all work.
   By Dave G. on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 10:53 am:

I also spent a wondrous morning screening my long-sought copy of Walter Hill's STREETS OF FIRE and found that, if anything, it is even more garish, ridiculous and over the top than it was in 1984. A definite must, featuring I'll-do-anything-for-a-break performances by Willem DaFoe, Bill Paxton and Diane Lane. A beefcake-on-the-way-out turn by Rick Rossovich, and some biker-bar pole dancing (to the music of the Blasters) by "Flashdance" body double and former T.J. Hooker plaything Marine Jahan. I give this one four leg-warmers.
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 03:14 pm:   

STREETS OF FIRE goes really well with RUMBLEFISH.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 03:24 pm:   

Dave, I've got new that will...Well, I'm not sure what it'll do to you. Ready. Patrick Swayze is recording a rap album.
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 03:42 pm:   

Clearly this was foretold in the SNL short, "Lazy Sunday" with

Throw the snacks in the bag,
and I'm Ghost like Swayze

not to mention the surge in cupcake sales...
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 04:12 pm:   

and it's difficult to deny that Chronicles is holding it's own with Kong...actually surpassing Kong last weekend.

One wonders if this new financial leaf has united stoners and Christians into an unintentional market and whether this will lead to huge DVD sales.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 04:47 pm:   

Good for Chronicles. Insipid it may be, but it's got more legs than the monkey.

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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 05:13 pm:   

Earnest allegory trumps comical dino-stampede?

I can't believe what I'm reading.
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Dave G.
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 05:53 pm:   

I am reserving a special place on my CD shelf for the Swayze rap CD, which I'm sure will be seminal and Seagal's SONGS FROM THE CRYSTAL CAVE. I think these icons are the only hope for pop music in 2006.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 06:47 pm:   

I knew it would make your day. :-)
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 07:21 pm:   

"I can't believe what I'm reading".

Clearly, "we're about to be taken to a dream world of magic"...

The American public craves authenticity unless it's Brokeback Mountain or Bob Dole...yippee yi yo yeech!

One recalls a Beautiful Mind somehow overcoming that later boxing film but perhaps it was only a matter of timing. Whether the public had had their fill with a million boohoos or phone tossing antics, Crowe was below expectations.

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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 10:38 pm:   

I just finished reading C.S. Lewis's totally insane THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH, which contains the makings of a really rousing movie finale. Instead of battling centaurs and frigid witches, we'd have wild animals eating stuffy academics and then copulating madly in English gardens while topless Cretan goddesses look on approvingly. I think there might be room to squeeze a Swayze or a Seagal in there as well. It's already like Narnia and Kong rolled into one, so why not throw a little Roadhouse in as well?
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 03, 2006 - 11:04 pm:   

Could Sam Elliot play a one-eyed wizard with a substance abuse problem?
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 06:18 am:   

Sam Eliot could play anything. Kong even.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 06:41 am:   

But would they let him? That was my question.

Swayze raps...I can't fucking wait.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 08:20 am:   

Elliot starred in HBO's valiant but failed attempt to invade Cinemax's softcore-porn thriller market PRETTY WHEN YOU CRY. Anyone see it? Me, I don't stay up that late...

I'm already crafting some rhymes for that rap opus. Let's see...Swayze, hazy, lazy, upsy-daisy, Aunt Maizie...
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 08:25 am:   

crazy...
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 10:31 am:   

Count Bayze...
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 11:27 am:   

let me count the wayze....
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StephenB
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 12:13 pm:   

Watched Leolo. Black comedy is right! Full of disturbing and absurdly funny scenes, but also touching. The narration is great!

Also saw To Catch A Thief, with Grace Kelly and Carey Grant. Not one of the best Hitchcock films I've seen, but still pretty good.

My DVDs came today..
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 12:21 pm:   

Yea! Glad you liked it. It's an awesome movie.
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 12:46 pm:   

Forget about Cary Grant in TO CATCH A THIEF...the women in that movie...mm-hm...

(I always thought it was an odd coincidence that the thief in that movie is The Cat/Le Chat...and in the title we have (toCAT/CHAThief). I suspect I was "in college" when I noticed that.)
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StephenB
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 01:08 pm:   

Oh yeah, on both accounts.

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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 02:31 pm:   

And of course this ties in with LEOLO's subtitle: "To Rape A Cat."
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 05:06 pm:   

You seen Leolo, Marc? Fucking terrific movie.

I've been watching my Kaurismakl 5 DVD box set collection. The Loser Trilogy plus two. Beeyootiful.
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 05:09 pm:   

as the sky goes hazy,
purple push-up bras
smackin' daisies...

Grace was aptly named and reminds us of just how classless America is...



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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 05:52 pm:   

Could I have made my little cat-rape joke if I hadn't seen Leolo?
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 05:53 pm:   

"No cats were actually interfered with in the making of this movie."

Also, I believe that all the cats in Leolo were of consensual age.
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JTS
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 06:12 pm:   

Due to the fact I'm on holidays, I've been making an effort to go back and watch some of my favourite all time films, stuff I haven't seen for years.

Started with The Manchurian Candidate, I had forgotten just how good this is. Its remarkable though, how John Frankenheimer went from one of the most innovative directors of his generation, to complete hack so quickly.

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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 06:21 pm:   

Those were heady days for Frank S as well...

Even Angela Lansbury :-)
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Bill Reynolds/Socrates17
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 07:07 pm:   

Spider Forest (Korean) anyone?
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Robert
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 07:14 pm:   

I tried watching the Manchurian remake. I got pretty bored after about 20 or 30 minutes and switched to something else. The original was good.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 07:28 pm:   

I saw Spider Forest. What about it? It was pretty cool, but I didn't think it was all that.

Marc, I guess I just passed over the joke. Did you like the movie?
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Laird
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 07:44 pm:   

Lucius,

Have you seen Marebito? It received mixed reviews...
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JTS
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 07:58 pm:   

The remake of Manchurian is godawful. Jonathon Demme showed some promise early in his career, but after Philedelphia, The Truth About Charlie and now this, I've lost all interest in him.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 07:58 pm:   

Yes, I liked Marebito. It's a curious film, shot in video, somewhat allusive. I found it unusually persuasive.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 08:02 pm:   

i thought the first half hour of manchurian wasn't too bad, but once they got into the incredibly awful Streep and the nazi scientist and all that.... Yech.
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Laird
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 08:16 pm:   

Thanks--that's good news. The synopsis and trailer were intriguing. Now to track it down.

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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 08:26 pm:   

Diabolik and Xploited Films have it,
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Laird
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 08:43 pm:   

Thanks!
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 08:57 pm:   

Watched HARAKIRI.

There's a political lesson there...
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 09:01 pm:   

Hara Kiri's great.
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Nathan
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 09:16 pm:   

So has anyone seen WOLF CREEK yet? I quite liked it, much to my own surprise. It's pretty standard evil-hillbilly-kills-the-campers fare, with the notable exceptions that the script and the cinematography are quite good.

What I liked most about the film, and what rescues it from being another generic entry in the slasher subgenre, is the naturalistic, unintrusive style in which it's filmed, the slow and patient development of the story (none of those goddamned cat-jumping-out-of-the-closet moments), and the realism of the three campers. These aren't the OC teen hunks of your standard mass murder flick; these are real people, the sort of people I've served plenty of booze to over the bar. The cadences in their speech are right, their jokes are right, the barely-acknowledged sexual tensions are right, their reactions to stimuli both mundane and terrifying are right. I believed in them thoroughly. And -- with one notable and fatal exception -- they did not behave like morons. They behaved with reasonable intelligence, and if the environment had been anything other than the Outback, they might have survived the experience.

I don't think it's a great film, but the characterization, pacing, and dialogue are enough for me to recommend it. I was pleasantly surprised.
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Nathan
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 09:21 pm:   

Oh, and Lucius, now that I've got my spiffy new region-free DVD player, I ordered a copy of MACH-- MACHU -- oh hell, you know.
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 09:37 pm:   

Clearly Japanese filmmakers haven't been using steroids...
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 09:49 pm:   

--ca!

:-)
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MarcL
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 10:22 pm:   

I did like LEOLO. It's a favorite of an old friend who urged it on me a couple years ago, along with TIME OF THE GYPSIES (which is also very good).

I still haven't watched BRIGHT FUTURE and it's looking like I won't get around to it this week. Too much other stuff to read/watch/play/do.

On the upside, I discovered a huge cache of Bob & Ray cassettes at the library, and my commute just got a lot more fun.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 10:27 pm:   

Jonathan Winters used to do these radio bits for NBC that I wish I could lay my hands on.
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PM
Posted on Thursday, January 05, 2006 - 03:38 am:   

Perhaps someone over at:

www.monitorbeacon.com

can help.
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MarcL
Posted on Thursday, January 05, 2006 - 08:21 am:   

Wow, cool site. Al Capp in the front row of that pic.

I'd be surprised if there's not a ton of Jonathan Winters bits on tape.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 05, 2006 - 10:20 am:   

Thanks, PM
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 05, 2006 - 11:12 am:   

I haven't seen Wolf Creek, Nathan, and doubt I will until its DVD release. But your review gives me some hope.
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 07:00 am:   

I wanna see HOSTEL. Sounds cool, and I liked CABIN FEVER.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 08:11 am:   

God, I didn't. Cabin Fever was just a cliched mess as far as I'm concerned. I find it amusing to contemplate that Tarantino is setting himself up as the Roger Corman of the new millennium.
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 10:21 am:   

Cabin Fever certainly was cliched, but it did a decent enough job, IMHO, in portraying an atmosphere of advancing dread and the idea of making the water the villain was pretty creepy. The ending was kind of amusing also. I thought it worked OK for what it was, which was no-budget horror.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 10:40 am:   

Well, enjoy Hostel. There's no point in that sort of movie for me. Just a bunch of evisceratiions and shit. With Wolf Creek, I'm hoping to see what Nathan reported -- but Eli Roth, IMO, is not a good storyteller, not a good filmmaker in any regard.

Now Uwe Boll, the auteur behind Bloodrayne, that's another kettle of crud. Our millennium's Ed Wood. Michael Madsen in a Prince Valiant wig.
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Robert
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 11:35 am:   

I didn't have a high opinion of Cabin Fever. I can skip Hostel.

I'm amazed people still give Uwe Boll money to make movies. Maybe with the German tax loophole closed, Bloodrayne and Dungeon Siege will be the last. I doubt it, but I can hope.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 11:44 am:   

According to IMBD he's got four movies in pre-production. What tax loophole?
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Robert
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 11:50 am:   

Slate has been running a series of articles about Hollywood finances. They wrote about the tax loophole earlier this year http://www.slate.com/id/2117309/
It's a scary article, as it reveals Tomb Raider 2 cost Paramount $7 million, despite having a $94 mil price tag.

The German tax law was revised this fall and they closed the hole that allowed this. The article about: http://www.slate.com/id/2130781/

For the full series, go here
http://www.slate.com/?id=2077581&cp=2116708&sort=d&rowstart=1&rows=25
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 12:08 pm:   

Thanks, Robert....
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 12:13 pm:   

Michael Madsen...Meat Loaf...Michael "Street of Fire" Pare...Sir Ben Kingsley...Udo Kier...

Great Gawd Amighty, how can this NOT be amazing?

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MarcL
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 12:18 pm:   

You should find the interview where Boll talks about how Meat Loaf loved working with all the prostitutes he hired as extras.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 12:36 pm:   

I'll google it. Thanks.

Yup, amazing.
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Nathan
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 06:45 pm:   

I thought CABIN FEVER was abysmal. The NYT reviewed HOSTEL recently, which is surprising in and of itself, and trashed it, which is less surprising. The reviewer even suggested that Takashi Miike's cameo harmed the film, in that by reminding us of his work, it threw into stark contrast Eli Roth's utter lack of vision.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 08:11 pm:   

That's a big 10-4, Nathan.

Less Roth, more Uwe Boll.
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StephenB
Posted on Saturday, January 07, 2006 - 12:44 am:   

Saw The Hole, which I really liked. You just wouldn't see a thriller of this quality which could appeal to a young audience made in Hollywood.

I also just watched the stop motion Annabel Lee short. It's good, with creepy imagery and a terrific sounding voice reading the poem. It runs a little under twenty minutes and after watching the interview with creator George Higham, I'm impressed by the shear ammount of work he put into the rather short film. Especially considering the meticulous process of stop motion. Not something I would attempt.
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Robert
Posted on Saturday, January 07, 2006 - 09:12 am:   

Thanks for the thoughts Stephen. I've just ordered the Annabel Lee short (along with the first two Lovecraft collections).

Has anyone seen Death and the Compass? I'm curious how Borges can be adapted to the screen. I've had little luck getting it from online rental places, so I figure I'll have to buy it if I want to see it.
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PM
Posted on Saturday, January 07, 2006 - 01:38 pm:   

NetFlix has it but I haven't seen it.
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Robert
Posted on Saturday, January 07, 2006 - 01:44 pm:   

It's not a problem of rental places not having copies, it a problem of not having enough copies. It always seems to be a long wait so it gets skipped over and other movies are sent.
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PM
Posted on Saturday, January 07, 2006 - 06:46 pm:   

I'm not saying that this hasn't been your experience but NetFlix says it's available now...
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Lucius
Posted on Sunday, January 08, 2006 - 10:06 pm:   

Watched Life is Sweet tonight for about the fifth time. What a fine motion picture. I feel complete,
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 12:07 am:   

Regret Rien!
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 06:06 am:   

Timothy Spall is the Demiurge...
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 10:37 am:   

Alison Steadman is the Anti-Demimoore.
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 10:39 am:   

The Amazon "Keywords" for LIFE IS SWEET are amusing:

Drunk Scene | Bondage | Family | Chocolate | Food | Nudity | Restaurant | Anti Social | Independent Film | Eating Disorder | Lunch Wagon

That's the whole thing in a nutshell, really.
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Chris East
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 11:30 am:   

I've been thinking about checking out more stuff from the Lunch Wagon genre--thanks, Marc!
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 12:09 pm:   

Yeah, that sums it up. I'd add Futility and Abundance.
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 12:52 pm:   

"Amazon customers who enjoy films about Lunch Wagons also recommend Paul Verhoeven's SPETTERS."
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Dave G.
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 04:53 pm:   

Forgive my ignorance, but is "lunch wagon" some kind of slang for a deviant sexual practice or something? As in, "Yup, Cecile from Accounts Payable climbed on board the Lunch Wagon last night..."
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PM
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 05:12 pm:   

---Watched Life is Sweet for the fifth time [snip]

Lick it up Lucius!

Too filling...
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MarcL
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 06:01 pm:   

Dave, it also goes under the none too subtle slang term, "caravan."
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PM
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 06:16 pm:   

Chronicles continues to clobber Kong with over 50 million more strong gross dollars.

Haven't seen either one but watched The Eel instead.

It was good to see a positive portrayal of an eel in film. And the eel lived too!

Of course I slept through a few chunks of the film but what a full ranged film this is! It has graphic violence and later slapstick. And when the slapstick is about to go graphically violent the others pull our sympathetic murderer back from the edge before he can kill again.

Peers can get us into trouble but they can also pull us back from the edge. As the eel goes to the equator and back so goes the days of our lives :-)
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Nathan
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 09:27 pm:   

Just finished watching MACHUCA. It is indeed a beautiful film. I thought what happened at the end was pitch perfect. (I won't say any more in case others plan on seeing it.)

Lucius, you should be pleased to know that, once the DVD arrived today, I plugged it in just to watch the trailer; my five year old daughter was thrilled with the scene where Machuca yells his name at the priest, and spent the rest of the afternoon hollering, "Pedro Machuca! Pedro Machuca!"
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Lucius
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 09:53 pm:   

That's cool, Nathan. Glad you enjoyed it. I'll try and base my recs on things easy for yr daughter to yell. :-)
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 07:54 am:   

"Thtweeet of Cwocodwiles!" Not so easy for the five year olds, as I learned. Same for "Butherrz Qway!"
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Nathan
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 12:54 pm:   

No, but you should have heard her back when she was three: "Daddy, what's Day a da Dead?"

I have to make sure she never sees a Brothers Quay disc ... she'll pop it in behind my back, thinking it's a cartoon, and then that's YEARS of therapy right there.
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 03:56 pm:   

It's a good way to teach your kids to treat their toys gently. (Because they have meat in them.)
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Stephen
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 04:45 pm:   

Where did you find Machuca?
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 04:56 pm:   

Xploited Films has it...
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Stephen
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 05:18 pm:   

Ah, but it's region 2...
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 05:26 pm:   

60 bucks.....


Here's a review of Malick's THE NEW WORLD by a critic I trust
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 05:40 pm:   

Oops....

http://www.villagevoice.com/film/0551,hoberman,71140,20.html
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Nathan
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 06:02 pm:   

Stephen, I spent approx. $60 on a Phillips DVD player from Amazon. I did it because I couldn't bear reading this thread anymore ... too many great movies I couldn't see! It's opened up a whole new world. I'm still debating whether or not to just go ahead and order THE DESCENT or wait for it to come here.

And yeah, I got my copy of MACHUCA at Xploited.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 06:23 pm:   

You might want to wait on the Descent -- I think it's getting a US theatrical release in early 06.
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MarcL
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 06:32 pm:   

"Where The New World begins by evoking Werner Herzog's masterful conquistador quest Aguirre, the Wrath of God, it soon settles down in the neighborhood of Kevin Costner's sappy Dances With Wolves."

Sigh.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 06:40 pm:   

Yeah, I know. Not good. I'll probably still see it, but Colin Farrel...I'm not too sure.
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Nathan
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 07:26 pm:   

Hey, didn't somebody once say something good on this forum about that Korean film BAD GUY? Is it worth a look?
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 08:56 pm:   

Yeah, me. Ki Duk Kim. It's a really dark film about the debasing of a college girl by a pimp.....Ki Duk Kim is a very good director.
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Lucius
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 09:04 pm:   

I just watched the Demon starring Ken Ogata, who won a Japanese Oscar for his portrayal of a serial killer in Vengeance is Mine. Here's what Amazon has to say about it:

Famed director Nomura Yoshitaro (Castle of Sand, The Incident) and bestselling Japanese mystery author Seicho Matsumoto combine forces on The Demon (Kichiku), a chilling and complex tale of betrayal and murder. A strange relationship develops between a man, his wife, and his mistress, and a young boy becomes the pawn in a dangerous game of passion and intrigue that ends in a shocking climax. Photographed in sumptuous color, The Demon will keep the most avid mystery buff guessing as it weaves an unforgettable tale of greed, lust, and obsession.

Here's what I say: This is one disturbing movie. No gore, no real violence, but if you're a parent, it incredibly affecting. Highly recommended.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 06:23 am:   

I'm not so sold on the Malick comeback. Saw DAYS OF HEAVEN on TV recently and was blown away by it all over again. But THIN RED LINE left me cold for some reason.

Whatever became of Linda Manz anyway?
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 06:46 am:   

Loved a Thin Red Line. Want to see the almost six hour version.

Don't know.
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Chris East
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 10:37 am:   

Wow, there's a six-hour version? I really liked Thin Red Line, but I can see why other people wouldn't like it. It's structured more like a war than like a movie...

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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 10:41 am:   

There's a 5 hour 45 minute version that includes the central character and plotline, none of which made it into the version that received a theatrical release.
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 01:33 pm:   

who was the central character meant to be?

i liked THIN RED LINE heaps, but i'm not sold on colin farrell, and that review... i dunno. i'll go see it and maybe it's best my expectations are lowered.
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Stephen
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 01:43 pm:   

Saw Layer Cake. Pretty good, although it may have a few logical inconsistencies.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 01:59 pm:   

Ben, he's not in the movie at all. I don't know. As to the hoberman review, he's been very dependable as far as my tastes are concerned, but I'm hoping I'm wrong on this.

S, I sorta liked Layer Cake, but there've been a lot better Brit gangster movies recently. Gangster No. 1 comes to mind.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 02:00 pm:   

I'm hoping HE'S wrong
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Stephen
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 02:08 pm:   

Haven't seen that. But yeah, it's worth a rent --especially compared to most Hollywood movies these days -- but not something I'd want to watch again, really.
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Stephen
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 02:16 pm:   

As far as gangster movies go, I'm lookin' forward to Cyclo.
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Gregg
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 04:40 pm:   

I believe I recall reading that it was Adrien Brody who was supposed to play the central character in The Thin Red Line, but the theatrical release reduced his part to barely a cameo. That's quite surprising that the movie could make any sense at all after cutting out the lead performance, but I don't recall any sense that there was anything missing when I saw this in the theater.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 04:50 pm:   

With six hours to play with it's not all that surprising. That's interesting about Brody.


Stephen, Cyclo....you talking about the Vietnamese film. It's very good.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 04:59 pm:   

Speaking of war, I just saw a pretty interesting artifact from the Vietnam years, Peter ("PRIVILEGE")Watkins' PUNISHMENT PARK. Watkins was a pioneer of the "mockumentary" style and this movie, which hypothesizes the existence of brutal desert obstacle courses where dissident youth convicted of sedition square off against armed police on "training" missions for possible commutation of their sentences, is surprisingly fascinating. Watkins gets really convincing performances out of non-professional actors and creates some really harrowing and thought-provoking scenarios. It's worth a look. I would love to see PRIVILEGE again; I saw it at Harvard Film Archive in the 80s and never saw it played or sold anywhere again. It was on a double feature with a Watkins mockumentary about the aftermath of a nuclear attack that was pretty scary even by today's standards.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 05:08 pm:   

Privilege must be available on DVD somewhere. I saw Punishment Park and liked it all right despite its somewhat dated feel.
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Dave G.
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 05:49 pm:   

Yeah, it's a definite period piece. And strident as hell. But an interesting artifact.
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ben peek
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 05:53 pm:   

it would make sense if it were brody, i guess. he's character kind of book ends the film, in a way. ah well. maybe one day we'll get to see it.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 06:08 pm:   

Eventually we'll see it. But it's probably going to be a few years.
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PM
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 06:31 pm:   

Regarding Privilege,

check with
http://www.robertsvideos.com/product.php3?invid=5625&ref=/browse.php3?All=&keywo rds=&NPAL=&MESECAM=&VHS=&DVD=&CDROM=&VHSEP=&VHSSP=&PAL=&SECAM=&MPAL=&alpha=P&cat id=&page=59&incr=2

It's on PAL VHS though and I have not done business with Robert's Hard to find Videos. (He's in Canada)

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JTS
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 06:35 pm:   

Watched a terrific japanese film last night called gate of flesh, it's set in Tokyo not long after world war 2, where a group of prostitutes are trying to survive and create some sort of order in chaos, when all of it comes undone with the advent of a renegade ex-soldier. It can be a bit melodramatic at times but it's well worth tracking down.

Also discovered the good news that Machuca is being released here as part of the Summer Film festival, so I'll probably go on Sunday where it's being shown as a double header with Hans Peter Hollands new film The Beautiful Country, should be good.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 06:43 pm:   

Let us know about The Beautiful Country...
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JTS
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 07:45 pm:   

Will do.

I've just discovered that Renee Zelwegger has been cast as Janis Joplin in a new biopic about her life. I'm sorry but I just don't see it, a meek, mouse like girl playing one of the most powerful female figures of her generation, this just makes no sense whatsoever.

In other strange news, I've just heard that John Sayles has been hired to direct the new Jurrasic park movie, oh well, at least he will get a decent pay for once.
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Lucius
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 - 08:15 pm:   

The Zellwegger thing has a backstory. Apparently she claims to have been channeling Janis and reputedly she does a very credible imitation of her vocal style. She also comes from that part of Texas...So she might be able to pull it off, in a demented way.

Yeah, Sayles....Maybe the dinosaurs will wear pork pie hats and cheat at cards and tell stories about the stegosaurus down the block. :-)
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Stephen
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 01:42 am:   

Yes, that Cyclo.
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 06:33 am:   

Hey, if the Fresh Prince of Bel Air can play Ali, anything is possible...
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Minz
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 06:52 am:   

Well Fresh Prince had the brash, egotripping thing down long before playing Ali. All he needed to do was get the physical part down.

Zellwegger as Joplin? We'll see. She might be able to pull this off.

Sayles doing a Jurassic Park film; it boggles the mind. I'll probably have to go see that.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 07:07 am:   

It's called Jurassic Park Slope.
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Nathan
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 07:30 am:   

Sayles is just returning to his roots is all; don't forget he got his start with Roger Corman.
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Robert
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 07:31 am:   

Sayles & Jurassic Park...an interesting combo. Will it be Jurassic Park IV: Dinosaurs with Guns?
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 07:35 am:   

If anyone can make dinos dull, it's Sayles. Maybe they'll all sit around a campfire and squawk folk songs, their hoots and honks and squeals blending into a sublime music of the spheres... :-) The Return of the Cetaceous Seven...
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 10:21 am:   

I take it you've seen one Sayles movie...
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minz
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 10:27 am:   

Hey, I enjoyed both Secret of Roan Inish and Lone Star, even if they were...slow.

And you know it'll have a John Williams score :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 10:27 am:   

And that would be Cretacious. Cetaceous would refer to whales.
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Robert
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 10:49 am:   

I enjoyed Lone Star and Men With Guns. Never saw Roan Inish.

Cetaceous Seven could fit in well with all the killer shark and octopus movies sci-fi channel shows.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 11:04 am:   

I liked those films as well. You gotta admire Sayles, he's had plenty of chances to sell out and stay there, but he keeps coming back to indie film.
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 11:50 am:   

Seen three Sayles movies. In all fairness, THE BROTHER FROM ANOTHER PLANET was not awful. LONE STAR was simply dull. MATEWAN, well.... Not the man I would pick to handle dinosaurs. I stand corrected on "cretaceous," although given JS's feel for action, it may end up being a bit "cetaceous" at that!
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 12:02 pm:   

I suspect Steven Seagal would have to bite the head off a midget for Sayles to succeed in yr eyes....
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 12:38 pm:   

It couldn't hurt.
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Dave G.
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 02:21 pm:   

:-)
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Stephen
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 03:20 pm:   

Remember seeing Eight Men Out when I was around seven or eight. My dad was into it. I followed it till the end and remember being upset with how some of the characters ended up.

Which do you think are his best movies?
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MarcL
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 04:21 pm:   

CYCLO is a great movie. Not quite your typical gangster fare. One of my favorite "gangster" movies is STATE OF GRACE.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0100685/
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 04:33 pm:   

Men with Guns is my favorite.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 05:36 pm:   

Saw a couple of previews with the movie today. V For Vendetta which looked pretty bad, with the Wachowski Bros. And the American remake of Pulse which looked like...the American remake of Pulse.
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Robert
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 06:34 pm:   

I saw A History of Violence tonight. From the reviews I read, I was expecting something deeper. It was ok, but didn't seem as great as many made it out to be.

I also found it disconcerting because the music sounded like Lord of the Rings outtakes. I find similarities in all of Shore's music, but the similarities seemed too extreme here, like he was actively trying to sound like LotR.
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PM
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 06:51 pm:   

It's a matter of comparison. I suppose if one is having to review ALL of the Hollywood films then HoV is easily one of the better films of the year.

Unless you're Spielburgled (the critics that is) by War of the Whatever.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 08:30 pm:   

It was the Emperor's New Clothes -- It's Cronenberg so it must be deep.
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minz
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 09:00 pm:   

HoV certainly wasn't all that, but it was a pretty good film in a year sorely lacking those. Solid performances. Didn't shy away from its brutal message. And I friggin loved the final scene at the dinner table. nicely done.

Anybody seen/heard much about Munich? It's on my radar, though I see so few movies in theaters, it'd be a shock if I get to it.
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 09:54 pm:   

IMO, it starts beautifully, with a very well paced evocation of the Munich hostage situation, then Speilberg loses his way. He can't seem to decide whether he's making an action movie or a John Le Carre movie, so he makes them both. Speilberg's technical facility has never been in question, but he's not a deep thinker. He's best in dealing with black and white, good and evil, and this movie is about gray areas. Give Spielberg props for trying, but he's just not up to it and he keeps pulling back...and his cause is not aided by Eric Bana, who plays Avner, the leader of the assassination team. Bana gives a rather hollow performance, In the mid-80s there was a HBO movie called Sword of Gideon, which was based on the same book by George Jonas (you might say, Munich is a remake). It doesn't have Munich's glossiness or sweep, but it was critically well received. In it, Steven Bauer played Avner and did a much better job. There are several terrible moves in the film. For one, all through it, Avner keeps having flashbacks to Munich, to the disaster, and he was never there. Even in the end of the movie, when he's having a reunion fuck with his wife, it's intercut with scenes of machine gunning et al from Munich. It's hamfisted and just plain bad. Speilberg stops now and then to deliver a message -- one scene involving a PlO member comes to mind -- and the movie screeches to a halt. There's an embarassingly bad bit where Israelis and Arabs agree to listen to Al Green's Take Me to the River -- Yecch. Can I get a witness? In sum, it's like every other Spielberg movie that's come down the pike the last twenty years. Some brilliant filmmaking, some awfully transparent manipulation, the usual bludgeoning about the importance of family (it seems every person the team hits has a little daughter in a pretty sweater), another basic 2 star movie. Long about the hour and a half mark, when they kill victim five, you realize they've got six more to go and time starts to drag,

God, I've wanted to say that. :-)
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Lucius
Posted on Thursday, January 12, 2006 - 09:58 pm:   

Actually there's been a whole bunch of films, Syriana, the Interpreter, the Constant Gardner, Munich, that seem to me the expression of a newly impotent liberalism, espousing a halting form of amorality--I'd like to review all of them in that context, but I doubt I'll have time.
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Dave G.
Posted on Friday, January 13, 2006 - 06:24 am:   

I enjoyed H0V, mostly for the performances, but didn't think it was anything so terribly special. I thought Viggo was decent, Ed Harris I can watch in anything, and Cronenberg got the best work out of William Hurt I've seen in a long long time. The high school bully stuff seemed straight out of an "ABC Afterschool Special"; does even the biggest dick at school get THAT upset because someone catches a fly ball in gym class? DC has a real way with sex scenes...I thought the scene with Viggo and Bello on the stairs was kind of disturbing. I also liked the way he ended it. Good, but in a year of good movies, I doubt HoV would have really been noticed.
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Minz
Posted on Friday, January 13, 2006 - 08:28 am:   

Dave: re HOV, agreed.

I remember Sword of Gideon. I enjoyed it quite a bit--I remember the ending being more a whimper than a bang, but it explored the moral issues at least a bit. I especially remember Bauer manipulating his squad to keep them going after the initial killings when their sense of righteous vengeance has begun to bleed off. Wasnt' Michael York in it as well?
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 13, 2006 - 08:29 am:   

...A year of good movies...

Those years are gone.

You gotta remember, regarding the fly ball, this was a comic book first, written by geeks....
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Nathan
Posted on Friday, January 13, 2006 - 06:21 pm:   

Dude! A bit harsh on comic book writers! :-) One could paint sci-fi writers with the same broad brush.
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Lucius
Posted on Friday, January 13, 2006 - 07:02 pm:   

Most comic book writers are geeks in the extreme. At least the ones I've met. Others give themselves away by their work....Se la!

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