Discussion in 'General' started by knuck, 13 Jun 2010.
Snooze fest, thank jiminy cricket for the invention of a fast forward button.
The Town - red sox/10
Pretty decent pace throughout, heists, gangsters, minor love story, ended well. Worth a watch.
Hostel: Part III - 4/10
Meh. Seems to fare better than the first two movies with the critics, and I guess it's not terrible... maybe if the torture-horror genre is your thing you'll dig it.
Stan and Ollie (2018) 9/10
One of those rare films I actually watched all the way through and without falling asleep. Steve Coogan as Stan Laurel was brilliant.
Venom - 8/10
Decent marvel effort. Bit more fun and not as up its own arse as avengers.
Sabotage - 5/10
Arnie's died hair was a baaad idea, looked ridiculous. Bit hammy at times, characters all over the place and largely unlikeable, ending fairly obvious. Passed the time but not really worth the effort. Wasted opportunity
Yeah, it's an old movie, but I really watched it at the first time 2 days ago
Would You Rather 7/10
Now this was a lot better as far as torture horror movies go. It's more plausible than others of the same ilk, and the acting is good. Brilliant ending too.
Death Note 5/10
Definitely not one to watch if you are a fan of the Anime as it's not a faithful adaptation, but as a film in its own right, it's... alright. Ryuk is cool.
Alita: Battle Angel 9/10
Fantastic. The best Anime adaptation I've seen yet, and it's just amazing. Great story, great acting, fantastic design / visuals throughout. Loved it.
Blade Runner 2049.
Absolutely stonking film, cinematography, visual design, costumes, sets, etc - the whole look of the film from top to bottom - is arguably the pinnacle of dystopian science fiction. The plot is simple and linear, like the original's, but still fine.
Ryan Gosling is surprisingly captivating as a brooding replicant-hunting replicant (this is not a spoiler - it's explicitly the premise from scene 1). He's perfect. Old Harrison is still perfect. The other major cast are also pitch perfect.
The film picks up and meaningfully develops all the themes, ideas and emotional tones that made the first one so unique and memorable. Unusually for a modern CGI-laden star-studded blockbuster, I found myself actually paying attention to this film and remembering it vividly for weeks afterward. The pacing helps: slow, meditative, neo-noir detective trudge with maudlin character drama, like the original. It gives you time to savour every fantastic visual and interesting character moment, never distracting with quick cuts or enthusiastic action sequences. The action, where it does occur, is just as uncomfortable, tense and desperate as in the original. You don't want the good guy to win; you want him to survive.
The film also does some really icky, weird, disturbing things with gender, sexuality and parental desires in its villain, and it's brilliant. Wikipedia notes that "the harshest reviews criticized the film's depiction of its female characters in submissive roles," demonstrating that when a piece of art is subtle, some of its critics will miss the point so hard it hits them in the back of the head: the film's depictions of the commoditization of femininity and female bodies in a technologically obsessed future is a cutting commentary on the inevitably lecherous and base uses men invariably apply technology to, as well as the eternal and historically observable male obsession with reproductive control. (edit - found this article which explores this subject in more detail, but consequently it is full of partial spoilers.)
It actually adds a new element to the Blade Runner formula, one that fits perfectly. The psychology and dark side of what would drive corporate egomaniacal men to want to make better, more human androids is not an original theme (countless android sci-fis have gone there, most recently Ex Machina) but this is one of the creepiest, most Thomas Harris-level messed up explorations of it. This was a villain (and performance) that I watched with as much fascination and discomfort as Javier Bardem in No Country for Old Men: psychotic to the very edge of being unrealistic, but toeing the line and somehow ending up terrifyingly believable.
The speculative distinction between how human minds work and how an android's mind would work, again tapped in countless sci-fis, is masterfully handled here. Arguably this is more fleshed out and detailed than in the original film, which barely gave itself a way to examine the replicant mind - keeping the villains threatening necessitated some distance. Here, with Ryan Gosling's protagonist, the film is free to explore the odd second-citizen almost-human bachelor existence of an institutionalized replicant.
It does so with subtlety and care. Replicants are distinguished from humans but only imprecisely. They're slightly odd, slightly uncanny valley, but it's directed and written with ten times more softness and care than the clunky OTT body language of Humans and Star Trek TNG. Replicants are sad, sombre, resigned figures, living so far from the possibility of spiritual freedom and human rights, yet so close to human experiences in day-to-day terms, that they cannot muster a strong sense of injustice: it's easier for them to simply exist, to make the best of the imposed caste system. Their hopelessness reminded me of prisoners of war, concentration camp inmates or paroled convicts: the film studies their subjugated, controlled circumstances, and along with the protagonist and the audience, quietly wonders if there's any possibility of change and liberation.
The film maturely sidesteps the very current and fashionable temptation to 'woke' the replicants' situation and make it an allegory for current racial, immigrant or class divisions, instead simply allowing it to be its own in-universe thing - to its strength. The world of 2049 is populated by fugitive replicants, obedient drone replicants, cop replicants, ordinary civilian replicants and hopeful revolutionary replicants. Many exist in squalor, solitude or undercover for safety's sake. Some lick the hand that feeds. Others are brutalized and subjugated. Drawing a parallel to race, migration or class would have been incredibly easy, but the film has its sights set higher than that. This allows it to feel truly futuristic and authentic, since nothing breaks the immersion of a future setting worse than the intrusion of present-day moral foibles. There are no ham-fisted Orwell-esque metaphors, no corny speeches to the middle distance here.
I could write about it for another 20 paragraphs (insomnia, obviously) but the simplest way to summarize it would be: imagine if the Coen Brothers and Alex Garland got together to make a sequel to Blade Runner. Imagine how bizarre, novel and excellent that would be. Because that's pretty much how it is.
Sniper Assassins End
Down right bloody terrible.
Did you see this guy?
b_e I couldn't have written it so eloquently, but you've nailed in exactly how I felt about 2049.
It's one of the most stark examples I can remember of a film's trailer (which had explosions abound) being so far away from the actual viewing experience, it's a magnificent film and a worthy sequel to one of the best Sci-Fi films ever made.
now I really want to watch this again.
Mulan (2020) - 6/10
visually very pretty, probably the sharpest bluray I ever saw (I didn't know my setup was this crisp) , Vibrant colours, great, a beautiful movie.
But the storytelling is just too drawn out, almost boring, turned into a drama and worst of all, it's devoid of humour.
This wouldn't be a problem, if it wasn't called "Mulan".
Imagine "Maleficient" would'd have been called "Sleeping Beauty", it wouldn't have fitted, the same goes for this.
Blade Runner 2049 8/10
Basically everything boiled_elephant said; particularly the cinematography is what does it for me. IMO it's longer than it needs to be, but still a great picture.
Bone Tomahawk 7/10
OOOOFT...you'll need a strong stomach for this one. I couldn't watch the scene with the sound on, but I made it through the film nevertheless. I'm a big fan of Kurt Russell in general, but I especially like some of his latter movies, with this being one. The plot is very linear and the pacing fairly pedestrian, but the acting and characterisation are great. Patrick Wilson and Matthew Fox are excellent. Simple, no-frills western if that's your thang.
Started Pacific Rim: The Black today. Have a long bus ride tonight, will be able to easily finish it. Looks promising.
Coming 2 America
Atlas Shrugged (the three parter thing on Amazon Prime) Libertarian BS/10
I was listening to this while I sorted out some Lego and it was the first time I'd heard anything by Ayn Rand (excepting Bioshock...). What utter drivel, driven by 2 dimensional characters. If this truly is a look into Ayn Rand's mind, I think her politics can be safely discounted.
Ayn Rand makes a lot more sense if you think of her as a Russian Jew who survived the Bolshevik Revolution as a child, had her middle class family stripped of their business and property, got hounded out of her studies as a young adult and fled to America, then got to watch the rise of fascism and see her family either die at Leningrad on in the gas chambers. Her philosophy of no state, only the market doesn't work so well now, but it's easy to understand why she'd think that way.
Boss Level - 7/10
Groundhog Day/Edge of Tomorrow meets Kill BIll. surprisingly decent but I don't know if I'd watch it again.
That does make more sense. But it doesn't make her correct.
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