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> Cinemexperience: part deux., Some more filums you saw.
Serafina_Pekkala
post Apr 20 2012, 03:09 PM
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QUOTE (Raven @ Apr 20 2012, 02:20 PM) *
From the off Titanic was supposed to be a big budget action adventure and during the writing process it mutated into the Jack and Rose love story. The film was never attempting to be an account of the actual people on the ship, it was a fictional re-telling of an actual event and criticising it for not showing an aspect of the real story is the same as criticising Saving Private Ryan for not showing any British troops when that wasn't the story the film was trying to tell.


That Private Ryan analogy doesn't work at all. If Titanic wasn't about the actual Titanic - then it doesn't make it any less shit in my book. Maybe if they turned a major part of WW2 into a love story between 2 really annoying people, then maybe.

So Pearl Harbour then.

This post has been edited by Serafina_Pekkala: Apr 20 2012, 03:15 PM
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Raven
post Apr 20 2012, 04:09 PM
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The analogy does hold; both are fictionalised accounts of real life events told from specific points of view.

Titanic isn't primarily about the Titanic itself, in the way A Night to Remember is; it is about the romance between Jack and Rose (the sinking of the ship is just the background against which their story unfolds).
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maian
post Apr 21 2012, 12:24 AM
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QUOTE (Sean of the Dead @ Apr 20 2012, 02:33 PM) *
It doesn't stop the film from being a terribly written, mawkish, insincere, trivial, dull drag. Although, that's my memory of it when I last watched it aged 10 or so, and I was not a discerning critic back then.


That's a tad unfair: the bit where the guy hits the propeller is fucking rad.

I haven't seen Titanic in quite a while, probably about ten years or so, but my memory of it is that I really didn't care for the first two-thirds, but enjoyed the spectacle of the last third. At the time, I didn't really know all that much about the actual events, so I didn't have a problem with seeing a real tragedy used as a backdrop for an historical romance. I imagine that would probably bother me a lot nowadays, if my response to the film I watched earlier in the week is anything to judge by...

Heaven's Gate (1980)

I last watched Michael Cimino's epic failure of epic epicness about five years ago piecemeal over the course of about two weeks. This was partly because it's really hard to find time to just sit down and watch a near four-hour film, but mainly because I found it interminable, and watching it in anything other than ten to twenty minutes instalments felt like a terrible chore. I hated it, but I've always felt that was kind of an unfair way to judge the film, so I decided to watch it all in one go. (Well, two. I watched the prologue at "Harvard" (Read: Oxford, complete with an appearance from a young Ian Hislop as an extra, apparently) one day and the rest of the film the next.

I'll say this much for it: it's one of the most beautiful looking films I've ever seen, the design of it is astonishing and the sheer scale of it is awe-inspiring, especially viewed from the perspective of an age where you could recreate 1890s Wyoming in a laptop. Cimino and his crew actually rebuilt a bygone age and it's tough not to be impressed by the sheer overwhelming vastness of it.

It's easier not to be impressed by the story, acting, writing and pacing, though, because the film is just as dull watched in one go as it is in instalments. The main problem, as with Titanic, is that it uses an interesting historical occurrence - The Johnson County War - as a backdrop for a romance that is not at all engaging. Considering that the battle between rich landowners and poor farmers has since become pretty central to all Western fiction (Shane is very heavily indebted to it, and in the novel for True Grit it is implied that Rooster Cogburn acted as a hired gun for the landowners during the War) it feels like a story that should be grand and epic, but unlike, say, David Lean, who tell a big story in a way that moved at a hell of a speed, Heaven's Gate spends about a third of its running time focusing on people dancing on roller-skates (that is not as big of an exaggeration as it would seem) than on setting up the conflict and making it something worth caring about. By the time that bullets start flying in earnest I had completely checked out.

As ever, though, the most interesting thing about the film is the catastrophic size of its failure, the stories surrounding its production, and the effect that it had on Hollywood as the last of the big auteurist flops (after New York, New York, Sorceror, At Long Last Love and 1941) that pretty much put an end to the New Hollywood. There's a fine little documentary about it that's available in parts on YouTube, and I'd highly recommend checking it out to see just what happens when creativity overwhelms sense.

Part One
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sweetbutinsane
post Apr 21 2012, 07:00 PM
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QUOTE (maian @ Apr 21 2012, 01:24 AM) *
That's a tad unfair: the bit where the guy hits the propeller is fucking rad.


That is easily the greatest moment of the whole film.
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Silky
post Apr 21 2012, 07:25 PM
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QUOTE (sweetbutinsane @ Apr 21 2012, 08:00 PM) *
That is easily the greatest moment of the whole film.

Seconded. I laughed when I saw that as I walked past my sister watching it. Suffice to say I got a dirty look.
That is the only part of the film I've seen (aside from the boobies) and I'd recommend it purely on those bits.

This post has been edited by Silky: Apr 21 2012, 07:26 PM
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sweetbutinsane
post Apr 22 2012, 08:04 PM
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There's also a pretty good drinking game for it: Take a shot every time you hear "Jack" or "Rose".
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Serafina_Pekkala
post Apr 23 2012, 10:47 AM
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Cabin in the Woods

Above average slasher flick with some okay performances but anyone with any knowledge of Whedon's previous catalogue has seen these ideas before in different forms. I enjoyed it overall but on reflection, there were some things that did not sit right and made me rather irritated. The plot is basically Season 4 Buffy arc about The Initiative condensed into a movie with bits from other episodes along with Dollhouse and Angel and even some Dr Who. Some parts work in an entertaining way (like the cellar of choices) but others fall flat entirely - namely the 'Shaggy' character who was a massive tool, subsequent Scooby Doo references, anything weed associated, the 'this is just a job to me' mentality of the experimentors* and a terrible scene involving a speakerphone. Also the mythology was muddled and the notion that ancient gods live under middle America has been done in more accomplished forms by Stepehn King and others incluiding Whedon himself. It is a lot to cram in a movie and there should have been more Sigourney and Tom Lenk. I didn't feel the whole 'Japan' thing was explained correctly even though it did create my favourite scene throughout, with the frog! I find the increasing self-referential nature of his work to be less delightful with each turn. It has become a bit inter-trope-y for me, I'm afraid (if one wants to put it in Whedon language). However, I do think the makers put effort into their work and Drew Goddard is an accomplished director of action sequences in particular - he bounces things along with aplomb. If this signals Joss doing more for mainstream and less playing to the gallery, then it might just turn out nice again.

* This I found jarring at times particularly and reminded me uncomfortably of those pictures of champagne parties at Auschwitz guard barracks. I suppose it was the point but I didn't buy it. It seemed awkward.

Tell No One

In contrast - a remarkable thriller for grown-ups with enough twists and turns to satisfy even the most hardened mystery fan. It makes Cabin in the Woods look like mashed baby food. François Cluzet (in a remarkable performance that won him a Cesar) plays a doctor with an idyllic life that turns sour when his childhood sweetheart, Margot (Marie-Josée Croze) disappears in mysterious circumstances. His family and friends (including Kristin Scott-Thomas) want to help him overcome this tragedy but then, he receives an e-mail that changes his life and how he views the past. Guillaume Canet also won the Cesar as he directs in remarkable style and with just the right amount of tension and reflection. There are some great and genuinely scary cameo performances from Jean Rochefort, Canet himself and Mikaela Fisher as the most terrifying female torturer on screen in a long time. Also you could devote a TV series to Nathalie Baye's lawyer character. She was astounding. Highly recommended.
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logger
post Apr 23 2012, 10:56 AM
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QUOTE (Serafina_Pekkala @ Apr 23 2012, 11:47 AM) *
a bit inter-trope-y for me,

Oooh, you win my forum member of the day for that.
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Llama
post Apr 23 2012, 01:06 PM
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QUOTE (Serafina_Pekkala @ Apr 23 2012, 11:47 AM) *
my favourite scene throughout, with the frog!

Easily the best part, I laughed so much at "happy frog."
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Rebus
post Apr 23 2012, 11:35 PM
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The Baader Meinhof Complex. (2008)

Recounting the rise of the RAF (not our RAF, the Red Army Faction) in 1960s/70s Germany, it features very attractive people doing very violent things in their pursuit of an anti-imperialist ideal. I briefly studied far-left extremism in post-Axis countries at uni, so had a minimal understanding of what happened, and while the film threatened to stylise the actions and personalities of the RAF members in places, I think it by and large summed up who they were as people (ruthless, lost, and largely unlikeable). The plot threatened to become somewhat stagnant during the trial of the founding members, but towards the end we saw the birth of the second generation of activists, and it picked up the pace once again, driving home the message that extreme activism can breed violent extremism, and often becomes a cycle of violence and fanaticism that feeds itself.

7 out of 10 rubber chickens.

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post Apr 24 2012, 06:16 AM
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QUOTE (Rebus @ Apr 24 2012, 12:35 AM) *
The Baader Meinhof Complex. (2008)

, I think it by and large summed up who they were as people (ruthless, lost, and largely unlikeable).



and hot and naked. Don't forget that. It was my favourite part.
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Serafina_Pekkala
post Apr 24 2012, 09:05 AM
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QUOTE (Rebus @ Apr 24 2012, 12:35 AM) *
The Baader Meinhof Complex. (2008)

I think it by and large summed up who they were as people (ruthless, lost, and largely unlikeable).


Largely? They were all self-righteous arseholes - although less so in the films than in various documentaries on the instigators. The trial showed that excellently and also, how they tore each other apart.

Funny because I was discussing with a friend of mine born in the late 80s how the concept of political terrorism is alien to a lot of young people now - even less that it may be righteous. They associate it with religion and religious extremism primarily. I think the fall of the USSR et al. has a lot to do with it BTW. The Red Army Faction and even the IRA (who were always political and not really religiously motivated, more affiliated along cultural lines) appealed incredibly to angry young people in the 70s. Now that is all completely lost on their kids. My friend didn't know what the RAF were fighting for or whom they were fighting - she thought it was 'very vague'. Which of course, it was but people at the time did not see it as such. Just shows how things can shift in a generation.

This post has been edited by Serafina_Pekkala: Apr 24 2012, 09:06 AM
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Rebus
post Apr 24 2012, 01:02 PM
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QUOTE (Serafina_Pekkala @ Apr 24 2012, 10:05 PM) *
They associate it with religion and religious extremism primarily. I think the fall of the USSR et al. has a lot to do with it BTW. The Red Army Faction and even the IRA (who were always political and not really religiously motivated, more affiliated along cultural lines) appealed incredibly to angry young people in the 70s.


Point. This is an interesting article I read not so long ago on that very thing.

Anyway, moving on.

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol.

Not as mind-blowingly awesome as it had been hyped up to be by some, but still a really great action film that didn't take itself too seriously (not that it would have had any right to do so). The action didn't let up and only got marginally ludicrous towards the end, so the running time just flew by. Jeremy Renner was swoony, and Paula Patton in a corset was humina humina. Nice solid work from Mr Bird.
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Silky
post Apr 24 2012, 01:06 PM
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QUOTE (Serafina_Pekkala @ Apr 24 2012, 10:05 AM) *
My friend didn't know what the RAF were fighting for or whom they were fighting

Didn't they fight the Luftwaffe? I thought everyone knew that. cool.gif





Sorry.
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Serafina_Pekkala
post Apr 24 2012, 03:57 PM
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Ta for the article, Rebus.
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