Home Forums Movies What Films Have You Watched Recently? Thread (Part I)

What Films Have You Watched Recently? Thread (Part I)

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  • FreemanGriffin
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    #1203290842

    Just got home from seeing Les Miserables, the Oscar nominee for Best International Film. It was so… depressing! I can admire the camera work and film editing without liking the movie. Everybody behaves unethically and with cruelty and meanness of spirit. There is nobody to root for, that’s for sure! I can’t give this film a grade because it’s a mix of feeling repulsed by the characters and yet admiring the film-making. I also hate non-endings to movies.

    I have now seen 3 of the 5 films nominated for Best International Film. Corpus Christi and Honeyland haven’t opened here yet. Parasite is going to win, of course, and deserves it; Pain & Glory is magnificent too.

    I do wonder why France submitted this film instead of Portrait of a Lady on Fire? Obviously they got the nomination with this film but still I have to wonder about the politics surrounding their choice…

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    cinetastic
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    Richard Jewell and 1917.

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    Lil Tony
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    Terminator : Dark Fate – good

    Wild Rose – very good

    Little Women – just a regular flick. Why so overrated?

    Bombshell – good and underrated

    Harriet – fine

    Joker Deserves Everything.

    Joaquin Phoenix is the Man

    Cynthia Erivo should win best actress

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    boss
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    Little Women – just a regular flick. Why so overrated? Bombshell – good and underrated

    Fully agree.

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    FreemanGriffin
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    #1203291216

    Saw The River Wild for the first time ever today. How did Meryl Streep miss getting an Oscar nomination for her amazing performance? and Kevin Bacon too? (: The film was superb: great direction, script, editing, camera work, suspenseful, and with terrific performances. The child actor was incredibly good! (Was he ever in anything else? I didn’t recognize him). Meryl in an action movie! Yowzers! (:

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    BICTH
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    #1203291241

    The child actor was incredibly good! (Was he ever in anything else? I didn’t recognize him)

    joseph mazzello? he’s the brother in jurassic park, also in a certain bp nominee last year

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    lady_bird
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    #1203291258

    I just rewatched Molly’s Game, Lady Bird and I, Tonya. Chastain was brilliant. Should have been nominated. Ronan was fresh and delightful. Ronan was my winner pick but after rewatching it, Robbie was eveything in I, Tonya. Definitely her best work so far. All three of them were amazing. Sad that Chastain was snubbed though. She was probably in 6th.

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    cinetastic
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    Little Women – just a regular flick. Why so overrated?

    Same here. I was a bit disappointed. I don’t get why it’s so overrated, either.

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    smurty11
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    #1203291283

    Bombshell – best TV movie of the year
    1917 – best video game movie ever made.
    Judy – 2004 Oscar bait nonsense

    Jojo Rabbit – Jarring tonal shifts. Still delightful
    Her Smell – so underrated

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    Jeffrey Kare
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    I have just finished watching The Lighthouse, this movie should be used as a lecture in film schools to teach students about how to create an intimate, tension filled thriller. Incredible performances from Robert Pattinson & Willem Dafoe, inventive cinematography that was rightfully recognized by the academy, genius sound work, and quite an intense musical score.

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    John
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    Le jour se lève (1939; France; Dir: Marcel Carné)
    It is considered an excellent example of French Poetic Realism, a film style in 1930’s France, starring one of the most famous French actors of his time, Jean Gabin. He typically played the hard edged role of a gangster, thug or heavy industry blue collar worker without much physical action. Instead, his were methodical and planned. The movie was released just before WWII began in September 1939. It was subject to a number of censorship cuts which have since been restored, and was banned by the Vichy government in 1940. It was re-released after the war ended. Has most of the trappings of a Film-Noir and I consider it part of that genre. It begins with a shooting in the apartment room by a tenant (Gabin) who then barricades himself in the room after the man who was shot stumbles out and collapses on the stairway, dying. While barricaded, he contemplates all the events that led up to him shooting the man in the classic noir flashback. Also typical of noir, there is a femme fatale, although her affair with Gabin is the catalyst driving his motivation. It ends in full circle with the shooting as seen from inside the apartment, and the immediate aftermath with denouement as the sun rises, giving the movie’s title, an idiom that translates to “Daybreak” (literally: “the day arises”). RKO bought the rights to the film in 1947 so they could remake it as “The Long Night“. They aggressively sought out all copies of prints and negatives to destroy them and nearly succeeded. A few copies were found in the early 1950’s, and it has since had an excellent restoration. Marcel Carné is one of the most renowned French directors of his era, alongside Jean Renoir, Jean Vigo, Julien Duvivier, and Jean Cocteau. Carné also made Le Quai des Brumes (Port of Shadows, 1938), and Les Enfants du Paradis (Children of Paradise, 1945). The latter is considered his magnum opus. As a footnote, Life Magazine characterized the RKO remake as a “melodramatic goulash” with Hays Code censorship removing all reference to incest and Hollywood giving it their required “happy ending”. By comparison they referred to the French film as an excellent mature tragedy. I found that interesting as Hollywood has a very bad habit of making abysmal remakes of superb foreign films. “The Vanishing” immediately comes to mind as an example most would know with Insomnia being one of the notable exceptions.

    An Actor’s Revenge (1963: Japan; Dir: Kon Ichikawa)
    Also known as Revenge of a Kabuki Actor, this is a remake of the original 1935 film which I’ve not been able to find. It is based on a serialized newspaper fictional story from that era. Set in 1830’s in Edo Japan, Yukitaro with the stage name, Yukinojo, is a Kabuki oonagata actor, a male who plays female roles. It was common practice for them to maintain that persona cross-dressing as a woman offstage. Many women were attracted to them; they had plenty of affairs and often served them as male prostitutes (to the consternation of the Shogunate). Yukinojo has a life’s quest to revenge the suicide deaths of his parents with the three prominent men who precipitated them by cheating his father out of his business and wealth in Nagasaki. As opposed to a straightforward assassination, Yukitaro goes about it with elaborate plots befitting a Kabuki actor and play, requiring the skill of an actor. The movie’s production design elements in the outdoor scenes are very Kabuki-esqe, leveraging on the film’s very wide aspect ratio. It adds significantly to the film’s Kabuki mood for a tragic tale, with the revenge plot creating unintended consequences. Very early on in the introduction are some obvious silent era cinematography techniques with the framing, editing cuts and vignetting. Yukitaro is played by Kazuo Hasegawa in his 300th known film, having begun his career in the silent and having starred in the 1935 original. He also plays the role of a noted Edo thief who makes periodic sardonic observations throughout. The director, Ichikawa, is noted for his dark, bleak and nihilistic films and this one is no exception. He started his career as an animator and some of that style also shows in parts of this film. While the film has a few short scenes with quick swordplay, it’s not an action movie. It’s about the story, its characters, and the elaborate revenge plot. In that it’s a superb film.

    John

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    oscarin7
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    #1203291981

    I recently watched Diane and Mary Kay Place is not only magnificent but her performance is heartbreaking, moving, and inspirational. This was a strong year for lead actresses but in any other year she could have been Oscar nominated.

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    John
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    The Night Manager (2016; Dir: Susanne Bier)
    This adaptation of John le Carré’s 1993 novel is a BBC produced mini-series in six one-hour episodes. I binge watched all six back-to-back taking enough time between a couple to make lunch. Noted for his British spy novels such as Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Smiley’s People, The Russia House, and A Perfect Spy, this one is about illegal international arms smuggling. The British ex-pat night manager of a luxury Western style hotel in Cairo is recruited to help take down an international arms smuggler who has corrupted members of the British and American intelligence agencies to enable his operations. Unlike most mini-series, this one doesn’t suffer from erratic pacing or lethargy. That said, it’s not a James Bond action movie either. The action is limited to some short well-choreographed fights in line with the story. Pacing is excellent and the script makes for a good thriller that moves from one suspense to the next. The breaks between episodes are logical, but don’t seem contrived. Character development is quite good, giving you principals you can care about, others you can feel sympathy for, and some you can despise. The icing on the cake is the slight twist at the very, very end of the denouement, one for which there’s no clue about it coming. Overall, it’s an excellent spy thriller and I was very pleasantly surprised.

    Beware of a Holy Whore (1971; Germany; Dir: Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
    If Fellini’s 8-1/2 and Truffaut’s Day for Night are their existential films about what it feels like trying to direct a movie, this is Fassbinder’s, one of his earlier works in his prolific, but tragically short life and career. Fassbinder is known for his World on a Wire, The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant, BRD Trilogy of three movies about women in the immediate post-war Germany, and his magnum opus, Berlin Alexanderplatz. Fassbinder’s short career was peppered with scandals and controversies keeping him in the German press constantly. As with Fellini’s and Truffaut’s, the weary director is beset by Murphy’s Law regarding sets, props, equipment and supplies, while being hounded by producers about budget problems after one producer backs out. Trying to handle the bored, egotistical and temperamental cast and crew is like herding cats, because his film has stalled half-way through production while awaiting film stock for which he has no funds. The temperamental and sexually charged, high libido cast and crew are having affairs and lover’s quarrels with hookups and split ups. The favorite drinks among them is a “Cuba Libre”, a fancy name for rum and coke. The director would like to escape his living Hell but contractually cannot, and his own wealth was poured into the production after the producer pulled his funds. The frustration shows explosively in emotional outbursts. It’s an excellent scathing satire of himself and his fellow filmmakers.

    John

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    JayK
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    I saw 1917 here in India. It was a packed house with an audience that really enjoyed it

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    John
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    Just got home from seeing Les Miserables, the Oscar nominee for Best International Film. It was so… depressing! I can admire the camera work and film editing without liking the movie. Everybody behaves unethically and with cruelty and meanness of spirit. There is nobody to root for, that’s for sure! I can’t give this film a grade because it’s a mix of feeling repulsed by the characters and yet admiring the film-making. I also hate non-endings to movies.
    . . .

    It’s quite nihilistic and I believe that was the point of it. Your emotional reaction to the story means the writer and director succeeded, even if you don’t care for the result. I was surprised by story and had been expecting yet another of the many dozens of adaptations of Hugo’s epic novel. You are quite correct regarding the politics surrounding submissions to the Academy for Best Foreign (now International) Film. Each country has their own method, some of which are more political than others.

    John

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