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Film in 2013


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#21 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 12:41 PM

“Good, Bad, I’m the Oz.”

Oz the Great and Powerful (2013: Sam Raimi) ***/****

If you are late for a movie, the trailers do usually give you a nice 10 minute or more buffer. However, if you arrive slightly past the stated time and the line is long combined with the dreaded person who cannot make up their mind you are in for a hair-pulling and anxious wait. It reminds me of when you are driving to get somewhere and you probably would have been on time except that someone decides that a yellow light means to stop the car. It’s that kind of feeling when you watch a person at the ticket line furrow their brow, ask a whole bunch of questions which prevent the line from moving. It also does not help if you are slightly caffeinated where the world appears to be going in slow motion and you also need to use the restroom.

I arrived at the theater just as the credits were beginning to roll, so I did not miss too much. I had to gather my senses, get my night eyes and then try to find the appropriate seat in quite a packed audience. Why did they put this in the smaller theater? A week ago I saw The Incredible Burt Wonderstone in the largest theater with only one person. That was cool. I pick an aisle seat where there was no one behind me and no one directly to the side of me. As always, someone would sit behind me a few minutes later. It was rather warm and the air smelled of popcorn, corn chips, body odor and some indiscernible cologne of the person two seats from me that reminded me of a cross between a hobo and brown sugar. It was time to focus on the film, now only if the kids would shut up. That, of course, would not happen as many with attention deficient disorders would play down the aisle, spout out impenetrable remarks and well act like children who have consumed lots of soda and candy.

I was told to think of Army of Darkness when watching this film. It was quite an apt description because aspects of that film could be seen throughout from the way the witches moved, to the plot archetype, to Bruce Campbell. This is, of course, a prequel to The Wizard of Oz (1939) and has many nods to that film, and sets up some aspects that would happen in the earlier film, except that it eschews the singing except in one “this is not a musical” scene. But I came out of the theater thinking more of the third film in the Evil Dead trilogy than anything else.

As one would expect it started in black in white. It also started in the 1.37 ratio as well. James Franco is Oz a con-man magician who is a womanizer and a marginal con-man. As one would expect you see several of the characters in the black and white section later in Oz. A great tornado whisked Oz away and well we all know where he was going. In Oz, he meets the cute witch Theodora (Mila Kunis) and she falls for him. We know his romantic intentions are not pure by the grimacing of his face when she mentions about long term commitments. He also finds a flying monkey companion Finley (Zach Braff) whom he saved and has sworn to forever help Oz even though he finds out quickly he is a fake. Theodora takes Oz to her sister Evanora (Rachel Weisz) who is charge of Emerald City, until the prophecy of coming wizard named Oz who has to defeat the bad witch whom Evanora states is Glinda (Michelle Williams) who apparently killed her own father. When he starts his quest to find Glinda, he also picks up a living china doll (Joey King) whose fragile family has been destroyed. The plot from here on out is quite standard once we find out who Glinda really is.

Overall I liked this film. The actors were so-so, something felt missing in James Franco’s performance (yes I would have rather had Bruce Campbell in the lead). Also the way his character treated Theodora was quite bad. I could have imagined him saying one of the quotes from Army of Darkness: “Oh that's just what we call pillow talk, baby, that's all.” I know Captain Kirk would have hit on her in that green face and body makeup. The visual splendor of the cinematography kept me interested throughout. Since it was made for 3-D there was a bit too much of “point things toward the camera”, but still the universe was nice to look at in 2-D. It would have helped if more attention was paid to the humanistic (or porcelain, flying monkey etc…) characters. I liked the Danny Elfman score on first listen as well, but then I generally like his output. But overall the film pales in comparison to the Army of Darkness. But is does have a much better finale than the other Disney retread Alice in Wonderland (2010).
Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

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#22 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 05:53 PM

Didn't get to finish this, but if anyone wants to discuss next week:

Iron Man 3 (2013: Shane Black) ***/****

Sometimes it is fun to get a group together to watch the latest blockbuster. While I am sure you think of me as a psychotic loner I do actually know a few people that are not online or in my imagination (as far as I know) though they are like a cleaner version of the cast of A Scanner Darkly. One of the benefits of having additional personnel is that the scenes you miss going to the restroom can be described back to you. It is also fun to abuse them during the trailers or is it to abuse the trailers. Regardless there is an audience in the audience for my shenanigans and I have had too much caffeine. My God, is that another trailer for Fast and the Furious Six. How many sequels are they going to make? I was expecting and got to see the Thor 2 trailer. My feelings are that once the movie comes on though it is time to shut up and pay complete attention. I am annoying that way on the television too.

I am a big fan of the first film and I do like the second just not as much as the first. But heck if there is a fourth one of these I will see it in the theater. From the beginning of the film you know from Tony Stark’s voice over narration and the fact the film begins in the past (1999 with the song I’m Blue by Eiffel 65) that the individuals who Stark was snarky towards (including a very homely Guy Pierce as Aldrich Killian) are going to factor in later in the film.

What a finale. Most of what I want to discuss about the film is in spoiler country so I am a little wary of writing on the plot. There are a couple of big ones that to mention them would be quite annoying in a review.

Of course you have to look for the Stan Lee cameo. There was a collective “there he is” from the audience. Do not forget to stay for the extra ending after the credits. Nothing tremendously important, but fun nevertheless.

Now on to Thor 2.
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My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

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#23 Sam Sanchez

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 11:05 AM

This early in the year, I'd have Mud as my favorite so far. Just plays like a classic American coming-of-age story similar to a modern Huck Finn. The performances by the two leading boys were outstanding, as was McConaughey. Jeff Nichols is 3-for-3 in my book.

My Criterion Collection (696/699):
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13,
14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, [66], 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, [86], 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, [124], 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143, 144, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151, 152, 153, 154, 155, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 162, 163, 164, 165, 166, [167], 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, [179], 180, 181, 182, 183, 184, [185], 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 201, 202, [203], 204, 205, 206, 207, [208], 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 223, 224, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229, 230, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 236, 237, 238, 239, 240, [241], 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, [250], 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 257, 258, 259, 260, [261], 262, 263, 264, 265, 266, 267, 268, 269, 270, 271, 272, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 278, 279, 280, 281, [282], 283, 284, 285, 286, 287, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 295, 296, 297, 298, 299, 300, 301, 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 307, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, [327], 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 333, 334, 335, 336, 337, 338, 339, 340, 341, [342], 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 350, 351, 352, 353, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 359, 360, 361, 362, 363, [364], 365, 366, 367, 368, [369], 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 377, 378, 379, 380, 381, 382, 383, 384, 385, 386, 387, 388, 389, 390, 391, [392], 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 400, 401, 402, 403, 404, 405, 406, 407, 408, 409, 410, 411, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, [418], 419, 420, 421, 422, 423, 424, 425, 426, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 436, 437, 438, 439, 440, 441, 442, 443, 444, 445, 446, 447, 448, 449, 450, 451, 452, 453, 454, 455, 456, 457, 458, 459, 460, 461, 462, 463, 464, 465, 466, 467, 468, 469, 470, [471], 472, 473, 474, 475, 476, 477, 478, 479, 480, 481, 482, 483, 484, 485, 486, 487, 488, 489, 490, 491, 492, 493, 494, 495, 496, 497, 498, 499, [500], 501, 502, 503, 504, 505, 506, 507, [508], 509, 510, 511, 512, 513, 515, 516, 517, [518], 519, 520, 521, 522, 523, [524], 525, 526, 527, [528], 529, 530, 531, 532, 533, 534, 535, 536, 537, 538, 539, 540, 541, 542, 543, 544, 545, 546, 547, 548, 549, 550, 551, 552, 553, 554, 555, 556, 557, 558, 559, 560, 561, 562, 563, 564, 565, 566, 567, 568, 569, 570, 571, 572, 573, 574, 575, 576, 577, 578, 579, 580, 581, 582, 583, 584, 585, 586, [587], 588, 589, 590, 591, 592, 593, 594, 595, 596, 597, 598, 599, 600, 601, 602, [603], 604, 605, 606, 607, 608, 609, 610, 611, 612, 613, 614, 615, 616, 617, 618, 619, 620, 621, 622, 623, 624, 625, 626, 627, 628, 629, 630, [631], 632, 633, 634, 635, 636, 637, 638, [639], 640, 641, 642, 643, 644, 645, 646, 647, 648, 649, 650, 651, 652, 653, 654, 655, 656, 657, 658, 659, 660, 661, 662, 663, 664, 665, 666, 667, 668, 669, 670, 671, [672], 673, 674, 675, 676, 677, 678, 679, 680, 681, 682, 683, [684], 685, 686, 687, 688, 689, 690, 691, 692, 694, 695, 696, 700

 

 

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#24 mikesncc1701

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 12:40 AM

Only seen a few recently but Iron Man 3 ranks among the worst comic films I've seen. It's awful in almosy every way and the more I think about it, the more I dislike it. Very disappointed as I've loved pretty much every Marvel film up to this point. Star Trek Into Darkness on the other hand was terrific. I've seen it twice since Thursday. Looking forward to Pacific Rim, Man Of Steel, Elysium, and Machete Kills in the next few months.

#25 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 10:22 AM

Only seen a few recently but Iron Man 3 ranks among the worst comic films I've seen. It's awful in almosy every way and the more I think about it, the more I dislike it. Very disappointed as I've loved pretty much every Marvel film up to this point. Star Trek Into Darkness on the other hand was terrific. I've seen it twice since Thursday. Looking forward to Pacific Rim, Man Of Steel, Elysium, and Machete Kills in the next few months.


Iron Man 3 while not great is still better (in my mind and I believe average IMDB rating as well) than Superman III, Superman IV, Supergirl, Superman Returns, Batman Forever, Batman and Robin, The Losers, Fantastic Four, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, The Incredible Hulk, Elecktra and heck Thor. I am still looking forward to Thor 2 later this year though.

I hope to see Star Trek Into Darkness soon.
Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
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#26 mikesncc1701

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 11:57 PM

I just feel that Iron Man 3 is full of plot holes in comparison to other Marvel films and comepletely ruined the potential for the story.

Spoiler


The beginning is brilliant as I'll agree with you. The ominous shots of armor exploding and the lead in with Eiffel 65's "Blue" was the highlight of the film. Unfortunately it's all downhill until the wonderful, nostalgiac feel of the end credits montage featuring a wonderful throwback score by Brian Tyler.

#27 Lawrence

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Posted 25 May 2013 - 05:02 AM

For what it's worth I thought Iron Man 3 was great fun. I've heard all of Mike's arguments on Facebook before, I don't agree with him at all, but I can see where he's coming from. For me there is no holy ground when adapting something for the screen. A screenwriter should do whatever they feel is important to make the film work. Fuck the fanboys. It's sad but true. Both American Psycho and Trainspotting are two of my favourite moden novels, both had the guts ripped out of them for the film versions - but the books are still there for me to read, and over time I've actually grown to love Trainspotting. Films, books and plays all work in different ways and therefor have to be treated differently.

Anyway Iron Man 3 was fun, I don't expect too much from this sort of film, some snappy dialogue, good CGI, a fairly coherent plot and I'm happy enough. Iron Man 3 had all of those, it failed in some places
Spoiler
But in general it all moved along quick enough that the audience didn't really get a chance to think about what wasn't working. What was Guy Pearce trying to do again? It felt like his aim moved about a few times during the films duration. But in general I liked this a lot. It's not the sort of thing I'd think about too much afterwards, or even be in a hurry to see again. It's just a fun summer action film, and they are few and far between nowadays.

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#28 sexy rancheros

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 06:42 PM

UPDATE:
1. Spring Breakers(dir. Harmony Korine)
2. To the Wonder(dir. Terrence Malick)
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little disappointed, but watching it twice and still not being able to make much sense of it, I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to see it again. The "story" is fairly simple. It's more the details that are shaky. For instance, I had no idea that Affleck's character is named Neil, but then again, the way Affleck is treated in this, it wouldn't surprise me if they never actually say his name. Affleck has maybe twenty lines in the whole thing and that's counting mumbled background noise and a problem the film has is that Affleck is kind of there and he isn't. This would work stronger with an actor that can be just "presence" a la Jack Nicholson in The Passenger or Brad Pitt in Benjamin Button, but then again, even Affleck was surprised at how he was in the film from what I've heard. Strongest segments are him and Olga in Paris and the fifteen or twenty minutes with Rachel McAdams. The portion with McAdams is particularly strong and it's disappointing that's there so little, but that portion is strong because it seems like Malick is working on new textures that he's never dealt with before. While Tree of Life might be more ambitious in terms of content (it involves the birth of the Earth and the afterlife for crying out loud), this seems much more ambitious at just being a fucking movie. While Javier Bardem's scenes add what might be thematic clarity to the proceedings, it's still hard not to shake that they feel out of place. The film as a whole feels sort of incomplete, like a work-in-progress, but there's something starkly whole about how the thing seems to wrap up (or around). Scorsese once said that The Thin Red Line is a film that doesn't really have a beginning or an end and I'm not sure about that appraisal of that film, but it certainly feels more appropiate here. I think what ultimately excites me about this is that it feels like a test run for something truly awe-inspiring (even for Malick standards) or so I hope.
3. Oblivion(dir. Joseph Kosinski)
Spoiler
It's hard to ignore, though, but then again, there's plenty of other sci-fi films that this thing riffs on (or if you want to be negative about it, rip off). But in all honesty, I don't go to the movies for originality in terms of story, but more in regards to how they use the cinematic tools to tell said story. I saw this mainly based on my love of Tron: Legacy and I regret to say that this film doesn't look or sound as cool (there's one theme that sounds like M83, the rest is just kind of generic movie score) as that film. It's still surprising despite what I said about its lack of originality, but then again, I don't mean it in the sense of story necessarily. And I think what I like about Kosinski is that he has an adherence to visual cohesion that a lot of other mainstream filmmakers seem to lack. The sterile white of Cruise's home and everything involving his job and the grit and black of "the opposition" are constant. I was annoyed by a particular backing down on what could have been the most interesting dramatic development in the film, but then, the actual ending is so kind of weird and unnerving conceptually (
Spoiler
) that it's easier to forgive. If I was to guess, it probably won't be in my top ten by the end of the year, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was in my top fifteen or twenty.
4. Pain & Gain(dir. Michael Bay)
Surprise, surprise: The Rock is the best part about this. This might sound weird, but I'm actually disappointed in this. Maybe, my expectations were unrealistic, but I was expecting it to be way more crazy and, I guess, offensive than it really is. And part of my disappointment might be how un-Bay it seems (am I still sounding crazy?), which might be why this has been doing a little bit better critically than you'd expect (maybe), but then again, this was made on a measly $25 million budget (feels slightly silly to write that, but compared to Bay's last couple budgets, this is measly). It might be his most impressive storytelling-wise from what I've seen (never seen Armaggedon, all of Pearl Harbor, or The Island). That's not to say there's not pacing issues (their first plan seems to takes a while), but brother almost goes As I Lay Dying on this shit by juggling around multiple perspectives and voiceovers. Everybody seems to get a time to talk in the background, even Wahlberg's bimbo stripper "girlfriend" that he passes off to The Rock at one point in the film. One particular scene where Wahlberg details a kidnapping plan, The Rock marvels at his ingenuity, while Mackey marvels at how full of shit he is. This marveling is all done in voiceover. This use of voiceover and a predictably outstanding performance from The Rock is what sticks in my mind a week and some change after viewing.
5. A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III(dir. Roman Coppola)
I didn't think this was too bad. I'm not sure about throwing this under the critical bus. It's kind of a goof. I could understand if it came across as thinking it was cleverer than it is, but then again, it could have for others. His little fantasies never truly come across as something tangible or rational until towards the end, where I think the film finally hits its stride in a way. It's kind of an awkward thing and it might have an attitute that some might say is sexist, but something about how the plot develops and resolves gave me a sort of It's a Wonderful Life vibe that I found touching in a way. This isn't particularly strong stuff or anything, but it's not as bad as I think the critical reaction would lead you to believe.
6. Kiss of the Damned(dir. Xan Cassavetes)
This could easily swap with the film below, but then again, I kind of like having two films from the offspring of world-class filmmakers next to each other. First things first, I hate werewolf eyes applied to vampires. You know what I'm talking about when you see it (or don't, whatever). Everybody sounds like they're dubbed, probably because there was some going on because of the three French actresses. Roxane Mesquida is perfect in regards to how she looks, but man, she doesn't know how to deliver her lines to save her life. The film is at its best when Mesquida is silent, looking sinister and sexy. Anna Mouglalis does the best in regards to delivery, but I'm not sure she's as good at looking vampiric as the others. There's also a sort of too cool for school attitude that annoys me that the film has, but then again, the way Mesquida exits the picture is kind of wonderful and the obvious addiction metaphor that comes along with the territory resonates well enough with how things resolve. The scene or sequence in the credits is impressive in that it adds more emotional dimension to this conflict with siblings than anything that preceded it.
7. Iron Man 3(dir. Shane Black)
I wasn't expecting much from this and I don't expect this to be on the bottom of my list for that long. I like Iron Man 2 a whole lot and it's mainly because of that film's laidback approach to its material. I guess the best way I could describe is that you get the vibe that nobody cared all that much working on it, which makes it sound bad, but it's actually good. It's like a hangout movie with superheroes. This sort of has this laidback approach at first, but as the film progresses, it just seems to pile more shit on as it went along. Favorite scene in the whole thing is the freefall rescue just because it's ridiculous and sort of stripped down to its bare essentials unlike the film's final clusterfuck of a battle(?), but then the scene is capped with a bit of "cleverness" that annoyed me, which I guess is how the film was, for me, a lot of the time. I actually liked the stuff with Mandarin.
Spoiler
Stuff with the kid is dumb and feels studio mandated despite all the attempts to make it edgy and not as schmaltzy as it could have been. I have no idea what the evil motivation was and did I mention the last battle is something of a clusterfuck? Also, who in their right mind would let Miguel Ferrer be Vice President? Has anybody in this America seen Blank Check? I think I prefer this to the first (my dislike for that film kind of ties into the whole terrorist bullshit stuff that I wrote in the spoilers above) and these are actually the only Marvel films I've seen other than Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance and a camrip of The Avengers that I barely paid attention to.

Need to see: Hors Satan, Night Across the Street, The Side Effects, Stoker, Upstream Color, Frances Ha, Fast & Furious 6, The Bling Ring, Man of Steel, Pacific Rim, I'm So Excited, and more?

Also, I had no desire to see Man of Steel until this trailer:

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#29 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 12:10 PM

For what it's worth I thought Iron Man 3 was great fun. I've heard all of Mike's arguments on Facebook before, I don't agree with him at all, but I can see where he's coming from. For me there is no holy ground when adapting something for the screen. A screenwriter should do whatever they feel is important to make the film work. Fuck the fanboys. It's sad but true. ...

Anyway Iron Man 3 was fun, I don't expect too much from this sort of film, some snappy dialogue, good CGI, a fairly coherent plot and I'm happy enough. Iron Man 3 had all of those, it failed in some places

Spoiler
But in general it all moved along quick enough that the audience didn't really get a chance to think about what wasn't working. What was Guy Pearce trying to do again? It felt like his aim moved about a few times during the films duration. But in general I liked this a lot. It's not the sort of thing I'd think about too much afterwards, or even be in a hurry to see again. It's just a fun summer action film, and they are few and far between nowadays.


Some spoilers below for Iron Man III:

This is an argument I see mentioned quite often including here. I am with Lawrence on this. Years ago I used to be upset if a filmed version of a book was not faithful in every aspect, but as the years have gone by, thousands of movies watched I've relaxed on this quite a bit (though I still was not happy when Bram Stoker's Dracula, because of the authors name in the title deviated quite a bit from the book.) But with comic books, since I do not read them much (though I do question fans on them about plot, character changes etc...), I have no issue with changes, mainly because I do not know the stories to begin with. The question always is though: how much fidelity does a movie need to be with its original source? I have known that comic books themselves often reinvent themselves and have conflicting points (for example how Spiderman does his web, it the comic books he has done it both from devices he created and also naturally in a later book; this issue itself has caused controversy with fanboys, sometimes this leads me to use the obscene gerund Lawrence used above in dealing with fanboys.) But I also think that one has to keep a certain amount of fidelity to the source material. The other question is when does it cross the line?

One of my author friends (of teenage books) is adamant about keeping faithful to the source material. He uses examples of Harry Potter as successful adaptations and Percy Jackson as a non-successful adaptation because it strays too much away from the source. I do expect an author to have this opinion though. He always discusses of a built-in audience of readers. But I do wonder how many readers will want to see the movie versus how many non-readers will want to see the movie.

I had not read any of the comic books so I have no attachment to Mandarin. Mike's main beef with this film was that twist and made him sour on the film and he seethed after that point (and was happy until that which is why I really don't think he means this is one of the worst comic book films as the ones I mentioned earlier are much, much worse). Maybe I would have felt the same way, but I didn't since I have never even read the comic books, so I was fine with the twist.

On Lawrence spoiler: ever see an Irishman at a funeral? :D It is just a way of handling death so it did not bother me too much. But when I rewatch it I will keep that in mind. With Guy Pearce's character it reminded me of the character that you know is bad, but does what it can to not think he is that bad until later.

One thing that annoyed me at the end was the explosion of the Iron Men as fireworks. Considered how much they cost it seemed insanely stupid, even from Tony Stark's perspective.

I wasn't happy to see the kid in there (with a mop hairdo that is so prevalent with kids in movies). Though I was happy to see Stark being snarky towards him a bit.
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#30 Lawrence

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 02:13 PM

^
I was kind of surprised how little the kid annoyed me. That sort of thing is normally going to set me off straight away.

Personally I think you can stick to the text far too much and end up making a film that really sags, the final two Harry Potter films have massive pacing problems that could have been fixed had the studio/director had the balls to change things a little.

1 2r 3r 4r 5 6r 7 8 9 10r 11r 12 13 14r 15r 16r 17r 18r 19r 20 21 22 23 24r 25 26 27 28 29r 30r 31 32 33 35r 36 37 38r 39r 40 41 42 43 44 44r 45 46 47 48r 49 51 52r 53r 54 55 56 56r 57r 58 59 60 61 62 63 64r 65 66 67 68 69 70 72 73 74 75 76 76r 77 78 79 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 93r 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112r 113 114 115 116 116r 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 222 223 224 225 226 227 228 229 230 231 232 233 234 235 236 237 238 239 240 241 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 251 252 253 254 255 256 257 258 259 260 261 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 271 272 273 274 275 276 277 278 279 280 281 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 289 290 291 292 293 294 295 296 297 298 299 300 301 302 303 304 305 306 307 308 309 310 311 312 313 314 315 316 317 319 320 321 322 323 324 325 326 327 328 329 330 331 332 333 334 335 336 337 338 340 341 342 343 344 345 346 347 348 349 350 351 352 353 354 355 356 357 358 359 360 361 362 363 364 365 366 367 368 369 370 371 372 373 374 375 376 377 378 379 380 381 382 383 384 385 386 387 388 391 392 393 394 395396 397 398 399 400 401 402 403 404 405 406 407 408 409 410 411 412 413 414 415 416 417 418 419 420 421 422 423 424 425 426 427 428 429 430 431 432 433 434 435 436 437 438 439 440 441 442 443 444 445 446 447 448 449 450 451 452 453 455 456 457 458 459 460 461 462 463 464 465 466 467 468 469 470 471 472 473 474 475 476 477 478 479 480 481 482 483 484 485 486 487 488 489 490 491 493 494 495 496 497 498 499 500 501 502 503 504 505 506 507 508 509 510 511 514 515 516 519 521 522 523 524 525 526 528 529 530 531 532 533 534 535 536 537 538 539 540 541 542 543 544 545 546 547 548 549 550 551 552 553 554 555 556 557 558 559 560 561 562 563 564 565 566 567 568 569 570 571 572 573 574 575 576 577 578 579 580 581 582 583 584 585 586 587 588 589 590 591 592 593 594 595 596 597 598 599 600 601 602 603 604 605 606 607 608 609 610 611 612 613 614 615 616 617 618 619 620 621 624 627 629 630 631 632 633 634 636 637 638 639 640 641 642 643 645 646 647 649 650 651 652 653 654 656 657 658 659 660 667 668 669 671 676 677 679 680 681 682 683 691 692 693 696 700 704 707 708 709 710 711 712 720 721 724 725 728 732 733 738 750 751 752 753 754 756 759 760 764 771 772 787 790 791 793 796 797 Eclipse 1 2 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 17 18 19 25 28 Criterion - 685


#31 mikesncc1701

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Posted 01 June 2013 - 01:11 AM

So regardless of my hatred for the differences in the source material, the plot holes, obivous to the dumbest of moviegoers, goes unnoticed? The armor, which is powered by the almighty arc reactor, is suddenly charged with a car battery? I could go with anything if it were used as humor in some way but Iron Man 3 is as awful as the Transformers films, alienating the audience with profound retardation disguised as fun.

I am very much looking forward to Man Of Steel, Pacific Rim, Only God Forgives, The World's End, The Wolverine, Elysium, Kick-Ass 2, Machete Kills, Gravity, Sin City: A Dame To Kill For, Thor: The Dark World, and Jack Ryan.

#32 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 04:05 PM

Star Trek Into Darkness (2013: J.J. Abrams) ***/****

Strategies for seeing a movie with friends is certainly different than seeing by yourself. I do not mind watching with friends (it always pays to make sure you watch the film with someone who wants to see that film; not much is more annoying than someone who wants to leave in the middle of the film), but I am one of those that really like to pay as much attention to the film without distractions from other people eating, talking or loud breathing (or the lovely person who laughs at every single thing as if they are a laugh track). Of course you now have a captive audience for your jokes and someone to tell you what scenes you missed if you need to use the restroom.

This feels more like a sci-fi action film with Star Trek flavor than a Star Trek film. Sure there are lots of in-references to the franchise, but it lacks a certain amount of humanism that the series and several of the earlier films were known for. But it is a solid action movie with some nice comedic content though with nary a break in the last half. Good luck trying to find a spot for a quick restroom break.

Since this is an alternate universe you can play with previously held canon. From the first film four years ago, the Vulcan home world was destroyed and Spock has a relationship with Uhura. Several previous plot points in the series and previous movies are changed here as well though only Trekkers will notice the vast majority of them.*

With the excellent special effects and the non-stop excitement this is a fun film to see in the theater. It starts off quickly with a scene reminiscent to the beginning of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Kirk’s actions have, of course, pissed off the natives even though he is trying to save their lives. He will then break the prime directive (when has Kirk every paid attention to this) by inadvertently showing aliens the starship while trying to save Spock from killing himself in the line of duty. This, as it should, pisses off Spock for saving his life. Kirk is demoted and put under the command of his former commander Marcus (Peter Weller). Meanwhile there is a rogue officer (Benedict Cumberbatch) who is committing terrorist activities for unknown reasons and is hiding out on a remote section of a Klingon planet. Kirk is ordered to go after and kill him.

* Spoilers: I do wonder why they could not have picked an actor that looked more like Ricardo Montalban. Benedict Cumberbatch is a fine actor and does well with his role though. His first fight scene was impressive, though technically inept as he is pretty much standing in the line-of-fire with Klingons though he is shooting with both hands. Klingons tend to value death in the fighting field so it seemed like a strategically stupid maneuver. The juxtaposition of the Kirk death scene with Spock was pretty cool as it mirrored Star Trek II. I thought it would have been even more impressive it they left it be instead of solving it at the end of the film (though that would infuriate some of the audience.) Sometimes I felt that Christopher Pine was overacted by both Benedict and Peter Weller. He does not seem to have the gravitas that Shatner had with the role.
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#33 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 18 June 2013 - 12:49 PM

This Girl is Badass (2011: Petchtai Wongkamlao: Thailand) BD/DVD came out in 2013. I do not know of an earlier release.

This is JeeJa Yanin's third film after Chocolate and Raging Phoenix. She is actually second billed to popular Thailand comedian Petchtai Wongkamlao (The Protector) who also directs the film. This is a comedy first, martial arts film second. Some of it is funny to me (though very broad), some of it is derived from better Stephen Chow films (knife bit was exactly like Kung Fu Hustle, some of the verbal gags seemed quite familiar) and some of it is overly goofy with an overabundance of foot fetish and clothing gags.

JeeJa is pretty adorable in this and the fight scenes are done well enough (I was slightly disappointed the first time I saw them). It helps that the choreographer is Panna Rittikrai (Ong Bak 2, Ong Bak 3). The plot is quite a mess. She is a bicycle courier (reminded me at first of Premium Rush; her boss is in the image below) who often does illegal deals. She skims off the side, hope she does get caught, but ultimately she gets found out. Because of this she tries to play two sides against each other (yes Yojimbo), while falling in love with the singer next door and living with her Uncle Sawang (Petchtai Wongkamlao) who has his own problems.

While you watch this you may wonder what in the world is going on sometimes. It is all over the place that trying to describe the plot is like trying to describe a cubist painting that was marked up by a three year old with crayons (or for you programmers out there, trying to figure out really bad COBOL code). What is interesting is that there are two different versions. The Thailand version has more exposition and from what I have asked about it does explain some of the plot holes (not all) while the latest release (Magnet R1) has more fight scenes. The Thai version has less JeeJa Yanin which seems weird to me. So I have heard that the R1 is the better release since the martial art scenes are the best part of the movie.

If you like fight scenes and especially JeeJa or your name is Duke or littlefuzzy then you need to see this. I think everyone else can skip it.

This will give you an idea about the film:

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Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
My Amazon Reviews

#34 Sam Sanchez

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 04:12 PM

I've seen more than I thought this year. According to my Letterboxd:

Maniac
Berberian Sound Studio (I counted this as last year)
Man of Steel
V/H/S 2
American Mary
Sightseers
Iron Man 3
Lords of Salem
Mud
The Iceman
Evil Dead
The Place Beyond the Pines
Stoker
Spring Breakers
Side Effects
The Croods
A Good Day to Die Hard
The Last Stand
Warm Bodies
Bullet to the Head
John Dies at the End
Mama
Gangster Squad

I think those all qualify as 2013. Still need a whole lot more that are already out I want to see though, not mention the rest of the year

My Criterion Collection (696/699):
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13,
14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, [66], 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, [86], 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, [124], 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143, 144, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151, 152, 153, 154, 155, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 162, 163, 164, 165, 166, [167], 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, [179], 180, 181, 182, 183, 184, [185], 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 201, 202, [203], 204, 205, 206, 207, [208], 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 223, 224, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229, 230, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 236, 237, 238, 239, 240, [241], 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, [250], 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 257, 258, 259, 260, [261], 262, 263, 264, 265, 266, 267, 268, 269, 270, 271, 272, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 278, 279, 280, 281, [282], 283, 284, 285, 286, 287, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 295, 296, 297, 298, 299, 300, 301, 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 307, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, [327], 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 333, 334, 335, 336, 337, 338, 339, 340, 341, [342], 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 350, 351, 352, 353, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 359, 360, 361, 362, 363, [364], 365, 366, 367, 368, [369], 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 377, 378, 379, 380, 381, 382, 383, 384, 385, 386, 387, 388, 389, 390, 391, [392], 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 400, 401, 402, 403, 404, 405, 406, 407, 408, 409, 410, 411, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, [418], 419, 420, 421, 422, 423, 424, 425, 426, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 436, 437, 438, 439, 440, 441, 442, 443, 444, 445, 446, 447, 448, 449, 450, 451, 452, 453, 454, 455, 456, 457, 458, 459, 460, 461, 462, 463, 464, 465, 466, 467, 468, 469, 470, [471], 472, 473, 474, 475, 476, 477, 478, 479, 480, 481, 482, 483, 484, 485, 486, 487, 488, 489, 490, 491, 492, 493, 494, 495, 496, 497, 498, 499, [500], 501, 502, 503, 504, 505, 506, 507, [508], 509, 510, 511, 512, 513, 515, 516, 517, [518], 519, 520, 521, 522, 523, [524], 525, 526, 527, [528], 529, 530, 531, 532, 533, 534, 535, 536, 537, 538, 539, 540, 541, 542, 543, 544, 545, 546, 547, 548, 549, 550, 551, 552, 553, 554, 555, 556, 557, 558, 559, 560, 561, 562, 563, 564, 565, 566, 567, 568, 569, 570, 571, 572, 573, 574, 575, 576, 577, 578, 579, 580, 581, 582, 583, 584, 585, 586, [587], 588, 589, 590, 591, 592, 593, 594, 595, 596, 597, 598, 599, 600, 601, 602, [603], 604, 605, 606, 607, 608, 609, 610, 611, 612, 613, 614, 615, 616, 617, 618, 619, 620, 621, 622, 623, 624, 625, 626, 627, 628, 629, 630, [631], 632, 633, 634, 635, 636, 637, 638, [639], 640, 641, 642, 643, 644, 645, 646, 647, 648, 649, 650, 651, 652, 653, 654, 655, 656, 657, 658, 659, 660, 661, 662, 663, 664, 665, 666, 667, 668, 669, 670, 671, [672], 673, 674, 675, 676, 677, 678, 679, 680, 681, 682, 683, [684], 685, 686, 687, 688, 689, 690, 691, 692, 694, 695, 696, 700

 

 

RED = OOP Release

BLUE = BD Release
[ ] = Box Set

 

My BD/DVD Collection
My Letterboxd


#35 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 04:31 PM

I've seen more than I thought this year. According to my Letterboxd:
...I think those all qualify as 2013. Still need a whole lot more that are already out I want to see though, not mention the rest of the year


V/H/S 2? It is never ending trying to finish off a year.

I forgot about John Dies at the End. I need to pick that up. I know a few people who are a fan of it, though they were a fan of the book first.

I saw Man of Steel a few days ago, what did you think of it? I've been meaning to put some thoughts down about it.
Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
My Amazon Reviews

#36 Sam Sanchez

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 04:49 PM

Yeah, V/H/S 2 got released on demand a couple weeks ago.


I don't enjoy the first one, and this one wasn't that much different. But there is one segment in it I feel is worth watching it for alone. Gareth Evans' (director of The Raid) segment in it is pretty great.



I was a little let down by John Dies at the End. It's okay I suppose, but as a fan of Coscarelli, it just wasn't what I hoped compared to some reviews I've read.


As far as Man of Steel goes, it has its flaws, but I thought as a superhero/blockbuster movie goes, it more than surpassed what I expected. That's not to say I thought it was outstanding, but it was better than I think the reviews are making it out to be.

My Criterion Collection (696/699):
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13,
14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, [66], 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, [86], 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, [124], 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143, 144, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151, 152, 153, 154, 155, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 162, 163, 164, 165, 166, [167], 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, [179], 180, 181, 182, 183, 184, [185], 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 201, 202, [203], 204, 205, 206, 207, [208], 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 223, 224, 225, 226, 227, 228, 229, 230, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 236, 237, 238, 239, 240, [241], 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, [250], 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 257, 258, 259, 260, [261], 262, 263, 264, 265, 266, 267, 268, 269, 270, 271, 272, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 278, 279, 280, 281, [282], 283, 284, 285, 286, 287, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 295, 296, 297, 298, 299, 300, 301, 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 307, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, [327], 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 333, 334, 335, 336, 337, 338, 339, 340, 341, [342], 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 350, 351, 352, 353, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 359, 360, 361, 362, 363, [364], 365, 366, 367, 368, [369], 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 377, 378, 379, 380, 381, 382, 383, 384, 385, 386, 387, 388, 389, 390, 391, [392], 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 400, 401, 402, 403, 404, 405, 406, 407, 408, 409, 410, 411, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, [418], 419, 420, 421, 422, 423, 424, 425, 426, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 436, 437, 438, 439, 440, 441, 442, 443, 444, 445, 446, 447, 448, 449, 450, 451, 452, 453, 454, 455, 456, 457, 458, 459, 460, 461, 462, 463, 464, 465, 466, 467, 468, 469, 470, [471], 472, 473, 474, 475, 476, 477, 478, 479, 480, 481, 482, 483, 484, 485, 486, 487, 488, 489, 490, 491, 492, 493, 494, 495, 496, 497, 498, 499, [500], 501, 502, 503, 504, 505, 506, 507, [508], 509, 510, 511, 512, 513, 515, 516, 517, [518], 519, 520, 521, 522, 523, [524], 525, 526, 527, [528], 529, 530, 531, 532, 533, 534, 535, 536, 537, 538, 539, 540, 541, 542, 543, 544, 545, 546, 547, 548, 549, 550, 551, 552, 553, 554, 555, 556, 557, 558, 559, 560, 561, 562, 563, 564, 565, 566, 567, 568, 569, 570, 571, 572, 573, 574, 575, 576, 577, 578, 579, 580, 581, 582, 583, 584, 585, 586, [587], 588, 589, 590, 591, 592, 593, 594, 595, 596, 597, 598, 599, 600, 601, 602, [603], 604, 605, 606, 607, 608, 609, 610, 611, 612, 613, 614, 615, 616, 617, 618, 619, 620, 621, 622, 623, 624, 625, 626, 627, 628, 629, 630, [631], 632, 633, 634, 635, 636, 637, 638, [639], 640, 641, 642, 643, 644, 645, 646, 647, 648, 649, 650, 651, 652, 653, 654, 655, 656, 657, 658, 659, 660, 661, 662, 663, 664, 665, 666, 667, 668, 669, 670, 671, [672], 673, 674, 675, 676, 677, 678, 679, 680, 681, 682, 683, [684], 685, 686, 687, 688, 689, 690, 691, 692, 694, 695, 696, 700

 

 

RED = OOP Release

BLUE = BD Release
[ ] = Box Set

 

My BD/DVD Collection
My Letterboxd


#37 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 05:42 PM

Yeah, V/H/S 2 got released on demand a couple weeks ago.

I don't enjoy the first one, and this one wasn't that much different. But there is one segment in it I feel is worth watching it for alone. Gareth Evans' (director of The Raid) segment in it is pretty great.

I was a little let down by John Dies at the End. It's okay I suppose, but as a fan of Coscarelli, it just wasn't what I hoped compared to some reviews I've read.

As far as Man of Steel goes, it has its flaws, but I thought as a superhero/blockbuster movie goes, it more than surpassed what I expected. That's not to say I thought it was outstanding, but it was better than I think the reviews are making it out to be.


Now I'm glad I asked. I'm interested in it specifically for the Gareth Evans segment. Omnibus films sure are a mixed bag aren't they :).

I thought Man of Steel was good (hence the ***/**** rating).

Random comments and possible small spoilers ahead matey:

I loved the special effects. Krypton never looked better.

I do wonder if Superman would have been smarter and took the action away from the big city. The amount of unintended deaths was huge. Yes, it looked cool, but seemed to get away from the "humanity" of Superman (that includes the finale made me think about when some fanboys got upset with the off-screen death of a hooligan in Batman Returns). I also did not particularly like the death of his Dad in the film, nor his Dad's attitude on saving the bus load of children.

The Messianic metaphors reminded me of Smallville sometimes.

Henry Cavill looks the role, but sometimes his acting seemed a bit sub-par. Christopher Reeve is still my favorite in this role. I also agree that his scenes with Lois Lane seemed forced. Was it a mistake to have Lois know of Superman much earlier than in any series or movie? I don't expect a Lois and Clark (a romantic comedy more than an action series) extending of this fact (though some had argued that when the Dean Cain character finally told Lois, and she would remember it :), that the series had lost its steam.

I liked Michael Shannon's Zod, who I thought had done another good antagonist in Premium Rush (yes I saw it in the theater). He has a way of making a semi-understandable villain here.

Overall I liked this more than Superman III, IV, Supergirl, but nowhere near either version of Superman II or Superman I. I need to rewatch Superman Returns with fresh eyes. I did not particularly like it when I first saw it.
Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
My Amazon Reviews

#38 sexy rancheros

sexy rancheros

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Posted 21 July 2013 - 02:07 PM

1. Spring Breakers(dir. Harmony Korine)
2. To the Wonder(dir. Terrence Malick)
3. Oblivion(dir. Joseph Kosinski)
4. Pain & Gain(dir. Michael Bay)
5. Fast & Furious 6(dir. Justin Lin)
5 is better because it doesn't really attempt to mess around with silly things like drama and character development. It's all about being fun and dumb. The fun eventually arrives here, but for a good while, it's just dumb. Before the double dose of fun at the end that consists of two elaborate and ridiculous setpieces involving a chase(?) with a tank and a chase with a big ass plane, the movie is just a lot of scenes that don't make sense in a bad way and Vin Diesel mumbling incoherently about family or some shit. The villain in this one is also less appealing than the last, a drug kingpin who'd just bludgeon people to death with a paper weight at a whim. The actor that's going to play the antagonist (at least from what it seems from the scene in the credits, not after) is so perfect for the franchise that it's ridiculous. But back to the good, the whole reason why this is so high on my list is because of that double dose of fun near the end that takes too long to get to. With 5, the silly setpieces start right out of the gate. Here, we have to wait until the final 40 minutes or so, but it's worth it to watch the movie establish its loopy logic of using cars as both stunt pillows to break one's fall and anchors that'd take down extremely heavy vehicles like a big ass cargo plane. The franchise might have shifted away from pure street racing, but it's still crazy about cars.
6. Upstream Color(dir. Shane Carruth)
Not sure about the placement here. Read some "critical" stuff on Wikipedia about it and it seems to get a lot of comparisons to The Tree of Life, which doesn't make much sense. The first 25 or so minutes I got a heavy Dogtooth vibe except maybe with a perhaps more lyrical touch. A woman is hypnotized with a weird drug slug and a man has her do bizarre rituals as he has her basically gather and give him all of her money during the process. While it's obvious why he is doing it, it's still baffling in a wonderful way how he has her do things like eat ice, stare at a painting of a deer, and laugh. This is definitely the strongest section of the film. The film then kind of becomes a relationship drama between the woman and a man that might have undergone the same hypnosis process as her. The film starts to resemble Reprise at points with its "dissociative" editing as it shifts focus from fragments in this couple's "life" to other fragments. As this goes, the film shifts it's focus to the actual drug slug cultivation, which involves harvesting the slug from the human host, placing them in pigs, and so on. This is the most interesting aspect of the film as the film goes about detailing what I assume is a process for a fictional drug in almost minute details. The problem is that the relationship drama is not as interesting because a lot of the tension and drama in the relationship is from the audience knowing information that the parties involved don't know. Also, the film seems to shift its focus from the couple to a gaffer character that's in charge of the "pig portion" of the drug process, which occasionally involves a wacky stylistic device of the man getting near a pig and imagining being near the human tied to that pig through the "drug slug," say in the person's house, hospital room, or whatever. These sections come across as mere padding until the final stretch better ties it together with the relationship stuff. The film works best when it's oblique about its logic but specific about its details. When it isn't, it kind of falls apart.
7. Grown Ups 2(dir. Dennis Dugan)
Sandler movies are pretty much beyond (or below) criticism. I think he's reached a point in his career where he just doesn't care. Some might argue has been the case for a long time now, maybe even since the beginning of his career, and most would argue that this is not a good thing. I'd argue the opposite. This sort of mentality has resulted in some supremely lazy work like the film that precedes this one and Just Go With It, but then again, it also led to gags, situations, and narrative beats in his other recent work that are so ridiculous that the films almost become transcendent. There's an anything goes atmosphere to this that I find fascinating, but it also leads to a whole lot of dumb shit. For instance, there's a sequence set in Kmart because, I don't know, money, but then again, I'm not sure how good having drugged out Nick Swardson sleeping in one of the beds on display and stumbling out of said bed to take a shit in one of the showcase toilets is for advertising. David Spade's also there, looking at knives to buy in order to intimidate his illegitimate son that's twice his size. There's not much of a narrative. It's just these grown up boneheads hanging out and being jackasses, while their kids sort of do the same. Narrative strands will arise and the film uses them for a gag or two and then has a tendency to forget them. To be honest, I prefer that it doesn't even bother with a story because who the hell watches an Adam Sandler movie for the story? It's just basically a string of situations and gags with no sense of logic or coherence really. Peter Dante and Shaq have the best gags just because of the sheer what the fuckery of what they do. The car wash scene with them was a particular highlight along with Dante's display of his rooftop skiing prowess at the 80s themed party that Sandler's character throws during the final stretch because if you didn't know already, Sandler really loved the 80s. Then there is the bad, which is often jokes that they keep repeating, hoping that the fourth time will be the time when the audience explodes with laughter and not groans like the "burtsnarp" (Kevin James's character stunning ability to burp, sneeze, and fart at the same time) and Tim Meadows's character and his family's exaggerated and obnoxious delivery of "What?" With such a devil may cry approach, you got to take the good with the bad. This is what life is: pain and ecstasy.
8. The Bling Ring(dir. Sofia Coppola)
Much like Somewhere, the first 20 or some minutes are the best, but unlike Somewhere, it never becomes super dull or stupid. It has its moments of stupidity and dullness for sure. The film's chief problem is its redundancy so it's bound to get a little dull but not quite in the same way. Best moments in the film are a slow motion tracking shot of Rebecca as Marc talks about how he loves her in voiceover (it reminded me of the opening shot of Millenium Mambo; is that racist?) and the handling of a car accident involving the daughter of Christoper Nolan's usual cinematographer (she gives the best performance in the film because she's able to establish this sort of airhead persona without sacrificing her humanity, I guess) that exposes the facade of "cool" that is often established, especially in high school. They are the best mainly because they seem to probe deeper into its characters and subject matter more than any other place in the film, which involves a lot of spending time in their famous victims' houses, stealing and gawking at jewelry and clothes. Coppola has done a better job at exploring fashion lust in Marie Antoinette and she has nothing particularly insightful to say about our culture's obsession with celebrity. But like I said before, it does have its moments.
9. A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III(dir. Roman Coppola)
10. "Behind the Candelabra"(dir. Steven Soderbergh)
Unconvincing is my problem with it. There's something about the central relationship that never convinced me that it made any sense outside of Liberace being interested in Scott for his young hot bod (Matt Damon is probably too old for the part) and Scott being interested in Liberace for his money, which would be fine if the film didn't seem to be skewed that it was more than that. The unconvincing could tie into the central actors actually being straight or the exterior stuff of their performances. For instance, I couldn't help but be distracted by Michael Douglas' accent and both of their hair and makeup. Damon might fare better in that regard because it's not such a physical transformation, even after when his character is actually supposed to be physically transformed at one point, but the whole him being too old thing kind of plays into this problem. Rob Lowe fares the best in the cast as a Botox'd Frankenstein Monster of a plastic surgeon and he overplays his part just enough. He's the equivalent of Matthew McConaughey in Magic Mike in that he's kind of the over-the-top anomaly in a film filled with rather low-key and naturalistic performances. Soderbergh also seems to take a laid-back approach to this and doesn't do anything particularly noteworthy. As Peter Andrews (his cinematographer alias), the film still resembles a TV movie for HBO, which it is, but considering his pedigree, I was expecting it to be less drab visually. The film was at its best when refreshingly the couple are open in dealing with the nuts and bolts in their sexual relationship along with Scott's paranoia of being replaced by a younger man, which resulted in the film's best visual moment (it involves him being backstage and draped in red light). It's a film I wish I liked more than I did.
11. Stoker(dir. Park Chan-wook)
Probably will be lower than this, but as of now, here it is. Character logic is all wackadoo in this. Maybe if Matthew Goode wasn't cast as Uncle Charlie and someone with actual charisma was in his place, I'd understand, but since Matthew Goode was cast, it's no Goode (you see what I did there?). He's good at creepy dead eyed stillness, but his ability to portray a character that I assume is able to coax and manipulate people through personality, he's just no Goode (double whammy?). Mia Wasikowska does her best, I guess, playing a character that doesn't have much of a reason for her actions other than she's a confused teenager in grief or something. There's plenty of moments that could have been uncomfortable and disturbing if it wasn't for the fact that the handling of the details through script and direction wasn't so clumsy. The shower scene in particular could have been creepy and off-putting, but just ends up hilarious with its slow motion and strangely triumphant score. Park works overtime to concoct "interesting" visuals that have a tendency to come across as glossy and overdone. A dissolve of India playing the piano to a shot of her eyes is the only memorably good image that I can think of at this time. Drama-wise, the revelation of Charlie is handled well, even if it's not surprising at all. I don't have much to compare it to since Thirst is the only other Park film I've seen, which I thought was definitely better than this. The entire ordeal comes across as confused or maybe, that's just me.
12. Kiss of the Damned(dir. Xan Cassavetes)
13. Pacific Rim(dir. Guillermo Del Toro)
I think indifference is the hardest thing to write about, which is the case here. There's moments I enjoyed. Best scene on a dramatic level is Mako getting lost in her memory, which is also the most fleshed out use of "the drift" that this film goes on and on about, and my favorite moments in the fights tended to be some previously unknown Jaeger device or feature getting pulled out and changing the dynamic of the battle. For a silly concept, the film seems to take itself a little too seriously and I think the 2 hour runtime is a good example of this. I could imagine enjoying this more if it was a lean 90 minutes, but all the chatter inbetween the fights is kind of a drag, especially since the film just seems to touch on the drama of the characters and doesn't follow through with any of it. I also wouldn't call the fights particularly spectacular or anything like that, but they, along with the more comedic scenes with Charlie Day and Ron Perlman, are where the film seems to display the most levity. Like I said at the start, I walked away out of this feeling pretty indifferent. Also, Idris Elba's speech featured in pretty much every trailer they put out for this is not on the same level as Bill Murray's in Meatballs for sheer inspiration and eloquence in dictation.
14. The Side Effects(dir. Steven Soderbergh)
This is almost the opposite of "Behind the Candelabra" in that Soderbergh seems to be working extra hard to make the material convincing despite the fact that there really is no way to do so. De Palma would have been a much better fit for this than Soderbergh. One plot point, in particular, I could imagine him having a field day with. It starts off strong enough, I suppose, and visually, unlike the other Soderbergh, it looks pretty good and the acting is strong, too. The subject could have been interesting if the film didn't decide to go down a trashy thriller route, which would have been fine if like, I said, someone like De Palma was at the helm, but with Soderbergh, it's just a reminder of the squandered potential if the story played it straight.
15. Iron Man 3(dir. Shane Black)
16. A Good Day to Die Hard(dir. John Moore)
I think the problem with the entire thing could be exemplified with the big "suspense" scene in the beginning. There's four points of interest during the scene: John McClane in front of the courthouse, Jack in the courthouse, bad guy in armored truck, and cars with explosives inside. The suspense rests on knowing where the cars are in relation to everyone else (maybe not the truck so much) and the film completely fumbles this aspect. We see the cars park near a building. Is that the court house? Probably, but too bad all the buildings look the same on the street. Explosives go off and we don't even see John during the explosion. The film just shows him getting up after it. It's like watching a magician pulling a rabbit out of his hat, but only showing you the hat being empty and then the rabbit in his hand, no pull involved. It's a wonky sequence and in terms of generating suspense in a competent way, it's pretty bad and this complaint can be extended to the rest of the film. Bad guy in armored truck delivers his lines awkwardly and does not exhibit any real sense of menace or charisma. Brother ain't no Alan Rickman, Jeremy Irons, or even Timothy Olyphant. The rapport between Jack and John is just as strained as the guy's attempt at being a memorable villain. Here's a choice exchange of dialogue. Jack: "I'm a McClane. John McClane." John: "John McClane, Jr." Jack: "That makes you a senior." John: "That's right and try not to forget it." Only thrill I got out of this thing was John saying his signature line, but then again, it just underlined how shitty of a Die Hard movie this is.
17. The Great Gatsby(dir. Baz Luhrmann)
I think the middle initial of Jay Gatsby is a Z. at least in this Sparkle Notes version of this. Alright, I'm all out of clever and the film is too by about the time the second Jay Z song plays on the soundtrack. Problem is the film tries to present the story as a tragic love story, which worked for Luhrmann in Romeo + Juliet because, you know, that's what it is. I do have to say that I'm a fan of two of the three versions of the Lana Del Rey song that they play during the burgeoning love portion of the film that's about fifteen to twenty minutes of the actual running time. Leo is strong in this. It might be his strongest as an adult from what I've seen, at least. Everybody else is whatever. Joel Edgerton is especially not good in this, but then again, his character is supposed to be an oaf. It's just that he tends to oversell it too much. Then again, it's not like Luhrmann is much for subtlety. Luhrmann's typical excess works fine with the parties at Jay's mansion, but once he actually has to handle the story like the climatic events near the end, it's overwrought and unbearable. I want to say that climatic stretch is 50 minutes long (it could have been less), but it felt like 3 hours. Also, if you ever wanted to see that symbolic green light about 20 times, this movie is for you.
18. Man of Steel(dir. Zack Snyder)
The influence of Nolan is strong in this one. I don't think the story is particularly Nolan-esque. It is actually rather simple and straightforward compared to his last three films. The clunkiness of some of the dialogue, especially the childhood scenes where we are constantly reminded that Clark Kent is extraordinary and "destined for great things," fit with Nolan, I guess. It's more a tonal thing and lack of humor, while I'm not sure Snyder is exactly a laugh riot, but compared to his last film, which some might say is too Snyder-esque, this feels defanged in comparison. There's no slow-to-fast editing that's often found in his films, which might be his biggest calling card as filmmaker, but Faora, one of the only elements in the film I liked, could basically be considered a personification of that said technique with her teleport fast speed before assaulting her target in regular speed. Big problem with the film is that once Superman becomes Superman, it's a drag. The pre-Superman Clark Kent scenes are the strongest because it shows him doing heroism minus a villain, which is strangely rare in these superhero movies, that I found kind of exhiliriating and cathartic, but then they lose their luster, when Ma and Pa Kent keep talking about how super Clark is. Once Clark turns into Superman, he's basically "superhero" and that's all. Lois Lane might as well been named "Love Interest" and Zod might as well been named "Villain." There's barely any character development, especially for the five I've mentioned. The three characters from the Daily Planet might as well be named "Suspense Device #1, #2, and #3." Military guy might as well be named "Military Guy." Scientist guy (tragically not played by Jeff Goldblum) might as well be named "Scientist Guy." Then there's the final hour or something that's just a long and tedious action sequence capped with a fight that could have involved Goku and Vegeta except set in Metropolis, involving less fireballs, and being more dull somehow. Hopefully with the sequel, they allow Snyder to let loose more because this is some dreadful stuff. All it did was make me want to rewatch Watchmen just to make sure it's still good.

Need to see: Hors Satan, Night Across the Street, Greetings from Tim Buckley, Shadow Dancer, Frances Ha, The World's End, Wolf of Wall Street, I'm So Excited, The Spectacular Now, Drinking Buddies, Look of Love, Don Jon, 12 Years a Slave, Nebraska, Inside Llewyn Davis, Anchorman 2, Computer Chess

Gonna try to update the calendar post today.


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#39 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 12:30 PM

Sexy, nice write ups.  Have not read something from you in a while.  I will definitely see Grown Ups 2, though I might wait until DVD.  Here's my take on ...
 
Pacific Rim (2013: Guillermo del Toro) **½ or ***/****
 
It certainly is easier to write about films you love or hate.  When you are ambivalent about a film it is easier to find another one you are passionate about.  The hype this film has had with various friends on and offline had me intrigued and looking forward to viewing this.  I am also a fan of the director (Hellboy, Blade II, Pans Labyrinth) and I knew this would be something he could do well.
 
I do not know if I was disappointed, but I felt the film was lacking in storyline and characterization with too many dumb scenes, too predictable of a plot and I was left wanting.  Maybe I am just burnt out of action movies and/or I have just seen too many.  I certainly enjoy a large robot hitting an intergalactic monster with a ship, but I also want to care about the characters.  I might just need to watch a few Eric Rohmer, documentaries and non-action films for a while.
 
A portal to another dimension has been opened (somewhat like The Mist) and large creatures called kaiju (Japanese for monster) have appeared to wreak havoc on the populace.  Since these creatures were quite difficult to destroy, large robots were created (better looking versions of Robot Jox) to combat these creatures though they need two pilots who are neuro-linked to each other with one performing the right brain activity and the other the left.  The arc of the story involves Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam) who lost his brother in a kaiju fight (a really stupid move cost them this; something no real solider or fighter would have done, you always make sure you finish off the enemy instead of celebrating early.)*  Several years have gone by and the kaiju keep getting stronger (reminds me of a similar aspect in The Incredibles); however, governments have decided to disband this very expensive program in favor of really large walls to stop the creatures (this is also incredibly stupid, even if it worked they would have no access to the oceans and what would happen if these walls were breachable ) Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) needs all the help he can get when keeping this waning program up.  Of course guess who is going to get back into the program.
 
Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi) had dimensions and some pathos, though her character was still pretty standard (though kudos for not going the romance route).  I though Hunnams performance lacked gravitas.  Elba has it, but could have had a better written Henry V rallying speech.  The kaiju groupee (Charlie Day) and the mathematician and Lee Evan imitator (Burn Gorman) make a nice though predictable team.
 
There are certainly aspects of the film that I liked quite well.  The after-market organ harvester Hannibal Chau (Ron Perlman) and his operation feel like pure Del Toro and so does the humongous monsters (a trademark in his oeuvre); though I thought a more diverse design of those creatures could have helped.  There was certain sameness to the bunch that I thought was weird considering the amount of past kaiju films Del Toro could have taken from.  The CGI was quite good, though the cinematography could have used a more diverse palate.
 
I might be one of the few to say this: but I would have rather had a Hellboy 3 than this.  I am glad he has a hit, mainly because he can possibly make that third Hellboy film. Make sure you say through the first part of the credits as you have an extra scene which is funny.
 
* How about the later and more annoying move: hey wait we are being beat up and I forgot we have a sword moment.
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My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

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#40 clydefro

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Posted 31 August 2013 - 11:00 PM

Ain't Them Bodies Saints is probably the first film from this year I've seen that seems guaranteed to place on a top 10 list when those things happen. It's great filmmaking, with a very withholding, threadbare plot and terrific performances. I paid $13.50 to see it in a room with three and a half rows of seats, no surround sound and black borders on the top and bottom of the frame. Still wasn't disappointed. 

 

As of now I have NYFF tickets for Bastards, from Claire Denis, the Coens' Inside Llewyn Davis, Kurosawa's Real, and the latest Hong Sang-soo picture. 






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