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

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    Atypical
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    #1204590893

    “The Little Things” (2021): This is a throwback to the serial-killer genre films of the 90s that I adored, and actually, John Lee Hancock wrote this screenplay back in 1993, sandwiched between two of the defining hits of the era, “The Silence of the Lambs” (1991) and “Se7en” (1995). This isn’t near the level of those two classics, but I was invested in the story from start to finish. It’s too bad the ending fizzles into a bizarre moral quandary area that the preceding two hours couldn’t adequately support. I loved the analog nature of the film, set in 1990, so no cell phones, DNA testing, internet, GPS, and pay-phone realness, etc. The policing work had to be done the old-fashioned way, which made it that much harder to find the killer. Same ole’, same ole’ with a bunch of dead girls (well, prostitutes) killed in usual grizzly, gory fashion. World-weary older cop mentors younger, hotshot cop. The OTT #1 suspect, etc. All of what might have been novel back then seems rote now, though I find it ironic that if this film had been released in 1993 as planned, we might have called “Se7en” the derivative knockoff today. Denzel anchored the proceedings with a staggering level of swagger and ease that’s hard not to marvel over. I get that he does schlock like this so he can make films like “The Tragedy of Macbeth,” but still, with great power comes great responsibility lol. Rami Malek seemed lost and out-of-place throughout, so I couldn’t buy into his character much at all. It’s pretty shameful that the two follow-ups to his already undeserved Oscar win were this and a shoddy Bond villain. Jared Leto, where to start? His character doesn’t appear until almost the second hour, and all of the Method-y weirdness becomes one-note after awhile. But the best sequence of the film is the interrogation scene where Leto steals the show right from under Denzel. The other showpiece that Leto’s in is a direct ripoff of “Se7en” (unless we’re being technical and say that it’s foreshadowing instead). I think Leto was closer to an Oscar nomination than people care to admit with surprise SAG and Globes nods. I wouldn’t have minded a replacement or two in the supporting actor lineup, but Bo Burnham’s performance stuck with me a tad more than I suspect Jared Leto’s will. Hancock’s direction was serviceable, but there were attempts to reach Fincher’s level that just couldn’t be met. I’ll also mention a fairly obtrusive Thomas Newman score that felt like it should have been used for “The Firm” (another 90s staple!). I don’t think this absolutely had to be seen in theaters though. Perfectly fine for HBO Max or repeats on HBO. Some twists and turns here and there at least kept things going. Recommended, but know what kind of film this is beforehand to keep expectations in check.

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    Cocastique
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    #1204608041

    Happening.

    Wow. This film punched me in the fucking face. I didn’t feel very good leaving the cinema. Definitely something that will stay on your mind a long time after the first watch.

    FYC

    Best Picture : The Worst Person in the World, Benedetta, Dune

    Best Director : Denis Villeneuve

    Best Actress : Renate Reinsve, Agathe Rousselle, Penélope Cruz

    Best Supporting Actress : Charlotte Rampling, Jessie Buckley

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    JV
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    #1204625099

    The Summit of the Gods, on Netflix (2021):
    Beautiful animation, spetacular sound design and score. The story is fine, it took some time to pick up steam and it needed a bit more investigation on screen from the main character, but I loved the way the flashbacks were inserted in the story. A character study about ambitions and the purpose of life.

    It’s really worth for its technical aspects alone. Really want this movie to get an Oscar nomination, but the category is just too stacked and this is not going to have the critics push I Lost My Body had. It should be getting in Animated Feature and Sound.

    4/5

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    Cocastique
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    #1204626399

    Parallel Mothers.

    I had a really good time but the more I think about it the more I realise how messy it was ? I didn’t really get how the subplots were linked.

    House of Gucci. 

    Just pure boredom.

    The Power of the Dog. 

    Underwhelming. I expected a lot and I found it to be pretty predictable. Not a bad film in any way however.

    FYC

    Best Picture : The Worst Person in the World, Benedetta, Dune

    Best Director : Denis Villeneuve

    Best Actress : Renate Reinsve, Agathe Rousselle, Penélope Cruz

    Best Supporting Actress : Charlotte Rampling, Jessie Buckley

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    Lil Tony
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    #1204626503

    Belfast……just give it the Oscar

    Laga Gaga for Best Actress.

    House of Gucci for best picture.

    Belfast for everything - Best Picture win

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    lulina
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    #1204626577

    I saw House of Gucci this week and honestly I don’t get the hype. I went with my best friend who is a Gaga fan, and we both got really bored with the movie. There were some plots that resulted unnecessary and the movie itself it’s so freaking long. The screenplay is weak, some lines too. And also to add the editing is awful, the abruptly changes between scenes, I felt lost in the storytelling and progression. The only thing who varely saves the movie are Al Pacino and Gaga.

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    LA26
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    #1204626615

    I saw House of Gucci this week and honestly I don’t get the hype. I went with my best friend who is a Gaga fan, and we both got really bored with the movie. There were some plots that resulted unnecessary and the movie itself it’s so freaking long. The screenplay is weak, some lines too. And also to add the editing is awful, the abruptly changes between scenes, I felt lost in the storytelling and progression. The only thing who varely saves the movie are Al Pacino and Gaga.

    I saw it with a friend and had the same issues you did. Gaga was fine IMO. Critics really overhyped her performance. When it comes to acting, Al and Jack Huston were really good IMO. I’d rather Al get nominated over Leto.

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    lulina
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    #1204626690

    I saw it with a friend and had the same issues you did. Gaga was fine IMO. Critics really overhyped her performance. When it comes to acting, Al and Jack Huston were really good IMO. I’d rather Al get nominated over Leto.

    Indeed. Leto character resulted to be in another place or movie, annoying at times.

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    Cocastique
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    #1204626861

    Just watched Spencer. I didn’t like it but I didn’t hate it.

    FYC

    Best Picture : The Worst Person in the World, Benedetta, Dune

    Best Director : Denis Villeneuve

    Best Actress : Renate Reinsve, Agathe Rousselle, Penélope Cruz

    Best Supporting Actress : Charlotte Rampling, Jessie Buckley

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    Atypical
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    #1204629111

    “Passing” (2021): Rebecca Hall’s directorial debut was assured from start to finish. You could palpably sense her intentions in every frame, and seeing how her family (on her maternal grandfather’s side) has its own share of racial passing in it makes this film resonate even more. There’s such rich subtext and foreshadowing going on with multiple kinds of “passing” exhibited: racial, class, and sexual orientation. I hope Hall continues to direct more films. Her eye for compositions is top-notch. I’ll be curious to see if directing takes priority over acting in the future for her. Eduard Grau’s cinematography was everything. I know there’s a number of black & white films in the running this year, but hopefully this one won’t be forgotten. Ruth Negga’s performance is one that I can’t get out of my mind. Clare was so magnetic, hypnotic, luminous, and ultimately tragic. Please let Negga stay in the Oscar conversation for the remainder of the season! Tessa Thompson had the trickier and more repetitive role with Irene that wouldn’t easily play toward the audiences’ sympathies. She reads a bit too modern in stretches for my tastes, but I can’t deny how conflicted and internalized a performance Thompson ended up giving. In a lesser film, the supporting men wouldn’t have been given much to work with, but that wasn’t the case here. André Holland navigated a somewhat stock role beautifully. Bill Camp had little screentime, but was super-impactful in each of his scenes. I won’t say too much about Alexander Skarsgård, other than how alarmingly good he is at playing a role like this to the point of typecasting. Very mixed on the ambiguous ending and the abrupt transitions Hall made in the screenplay. The novel is supposedly also like this, and some budgetary issues were also at play. I’ve decided to read Nella Larsen’s novel in the new year, b/c I need more lol.

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    Baroque
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    #1204629135

    Spencer (2021) – While Stewart’s portrayal wasn’t terribly natural, it was captivating, and she took me along on a ride that many other actresses might have lost me on. The mounting claustrophobia pressed convincingly down to show the audience her final breaking point. However, the film around her was a little too precious in some of its decisions.

    Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021) – For the majority of the film, this served as a delightful (if exceptionally lightweight) return to the franchise. It was clearly written as a love letter to the heart of what had succeeded in 1984, and for a while, it worked well. …And then it stumbled hard enough to carve out a new canyon in the landscape. Set aside the third act that stopped being “a love letter” and turned into “a blatant rip-off.” No, the true horror didn’t come until the very last minutes, in one of the most misguided decisions I’ve ever seen put to film. A pity.

    The Aviator (2004) – Finally, I had the chance to watch this. It was as masterful as I’d expected, with every cylinder firing. Like with Spencer, the audience was wholly taken along on the journey of a protagonist progressively losing a firm grip on reality, and more importantly, experiencing tension themselves instead of simply watching it. My one complaint is terribly, terribly nitpicky, and it has to do with the color grading. I know that Scorsese wanted the color grading to match films of the time, but my Angeleno brain kept throwing up protest at the shades it was seeing. Not bad if that’s the only complaint I can make!

    Encanto (2021) – After the Dollar Store attempt at Ghibli that was Luca, I was hoping that Disney would come with a better entry than Pixar. I did expect something better from the RT score, but I didn’t expect to instantly have a new favorite 3D Disney film. The audience of around 40 people — kids, parents, couples, etc. — burst into instant applause the moment the credits rolled. I won’t call it high art by any means, but I will call it a very nice surprise.

    So… it’s been a real mixture of high art and pop art recently!

    FYC: 🐕 & 🐖

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    Labyrinth
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    #1204643639

    Just watched Incendies and what a phenomenal film!The acting, the direction, the cinematography, and that ending!!Unbelievable that it lost the Academy Award

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    Cocastique
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    #1204643750

    The Matrix

    Saw it for the first time at the theatre and… yeah this is iconic.

    FYC

    Best Picture : The Worst Person in the World, Benedetta, Dune

    Best Director : Denis Villeneuve

    Best Actress : Renate Reinsve, Agathe Rousselle, Penélope Cruz

    Best Supporting Actress : Charlotte Rampling, Jessie Buckley

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    Grunge
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    #1204657894

    New Flims I’ve seen this year ranked by how much I liked them. (Updated for West Side Story, Luca and The Mitchels vs the Machines)

    1. Tick Tick Boom. I loved this flim it just really blew me away. I loved the direction, the acting, the sings and everything else 10/10

    2. The Power Of The Dog A drama that makes you think with memorable characters. I loved this flim 9/10

    3. The Mitchels Vs The Machines. A very nice and lovely movie. I really like the family dynamics and the unique visuals this flim goes for. 9/10

    4. Dune An amazing action movie with stuning special effects. This flim is a visual masterpiece 8/10

    5. Last Night In Soho  Great acting, great characters and gorgeous cinematography. Just a treat to watch 8/10

    5. West Side Story. I really enjoyed this one despite odd writing at times. Great songs and great direction from Speilberg one of the greatests. 7/10

    6. No Time To Die Bonds final outing as 007. I loved the places they went with Bond and M characters and the female 007 was pretty. Pitty this flim suffers from the worst bond villian ever 6/10

    7. Luca. It’s a fun disney flim that has what you’d expect. Great animation and a fun little story it serves it’s purpose as a fun little movie to watch with your kids but it’s not the most exciting flim and you won’t remember it 6 months later. 5/10

    8. Ghostbusters revisted  There’s some good characters and some interesting characters here but this flim runs on nostalgia rather than it’s own merits at times. The ending was a bit much 5/10

    9. King Richard  I have no interest in sports flims whatsoever so as a result I really didn’t care for this one. The sappy moments missed their mark except for one cleverly written speech. It just seems too much like a movie designed to get Will Smith and oscar rather than coming from a sincere place 3/10

    10. Venom 2 Let There Be Carnage  Hated every second of it. Sloppy direction, sloppy editing and sloppy writing. They knew they were going to make money no matter how bad this turned out so why even bother?  0/10

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    MikeT
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    #1204658142

    Tick Tick boom

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