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<400 Checks Challenge (Official, August 2020)

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Melvelet
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<400 Checks Challenge (Official, August 2020)

#1

Post by Melvelet »

<400 Checks Challenge

incl. 1>500<400 challenge


Image

Goal:
Watch as many films with fewer than 400 checks on ICM as you can!

Challenge runs 1 August 2020 - 31 August 2020.

Rules:
- Rewatches allowed and good for the soul.
- A feature film (at least 40 min) counts as one entry.
- A total of 60 minutes of short films count as one entry.
- To qualify for the challenge, you must list the number of checks the film has, including your check. 400 or fewer, including your check, qualifies. Films with >400 checks are ineligible.
- For mini-series, individual episodes may count if the series page has <400 checks; report the check count for the overall series.
- No TV series this challenge.

Stats & Formatting:
- Title (year) #Checks is the preferred format (Include your check in the total)
- Linking to the IMDb entry would be cool as I plan to create some stats
- New posts are preferred over edited posts
- I'll be tracking years and checks with this challenge
- Link to ICM import: https://beta.icheckmovies.com/import/movies/

Bonus Challenge: 1>500<400 Challenge!
Goal: Watch films recommended by other participants of this challenge, just like in this challenge. Anyone can nominate one film after having watched 3 entries for this challenge. We'll use the same nomination rules as the previous challenge so a film must fulfil the following criteria:
1. Not on this year's or last year's 500<400
2. <300 checks for films on 0 official lists, <150 for films on 1 official list, <100 for films on 2 official lists, <50 for films on more than 2 official lists
3. Not nominated before by another forum member

It would be nice if you wrote a few lines about the film of your choice, a personal introduction. It's not necessary to answer all of these questions, but you could think of questions like: why exactly this is one of your favourite films? Why does this film deserve more love? What makes watching this film a unique experience? Why does this film deserve a high spot in our hidden gems list?
Try to trigger people into watching it. You might want to add a screenshot as well.
Nominations:
Nominator Film ICM Reason link to post
zzzorf Amazonia (2013) :ICM: This movie was a beautifully shot look at the Amazonian Jungle. A domestic Capuchin Monkey is stranded in the Amazon and encounters many perils as he investigates this vast forest. The original has no voice over which I think would work better here but there is a version out there with Martin Sheen doing a voiceover if anyone would prefer that (I have no idea how good that version is or if Sheen helps or hinders the movie) here
flavo5000 Symptoms (1974) :ICM: Casting the English countryside in golden hues of twilight is the perfect setting for this very atmospheric, moody and criminally underrated psychological horror film from José Ramón Larraz and is almost certainly his best film. It is well worth a watch (plus it'll count as a double for the '70s challenge as well ;) ). It's easily available on youtube (although frankly the transfer there is very poor and doesn't do the film justice) as well as a spiffy blu-ray which looks much better.here
Onderhond The Fourth Portrait (2010) :ICM: This is the film that got me hooked on Mong-Hong Chung. A cinematographer turned director who has a way with stylish, stilted drama. It's a nice change of pace of those who want something else than the typical Taiwanese New Wave films, but don't want to stray too far from the arthouse path. His latest film won the Golden Horse awards for best film + director, just so you know it's not some weird, underground dude who makes films for an audience of 5.here
beavis Hintertreppe (1921) :ICM: It has only 67 checks at the moment but it is truly an early masterpiece of silent cinema and expressionism. At only 50 minutes it won't take up much of your time, and what you'll get is a very "Lynchean" dreamlike atmosphere. In an attempt at pure cinema, this one reduces the amount of intertitles to almost nothing, setting the stage for more well known masterpieces of silent expression that came to a peak around 1928 or so. This one is perfect for what it sets out to do, and is, and I can't understand why it hasn't gotten more credit for it.here
maxwelldeux Keepers of the Magic (2016) :ICM: I genuinely think this is a film most folks around here would like, or at least appreciate. It's a documentary celebrating cinematographers and cinematography. It features interviews with a lot of cinematographers about their craft, and includes clips of famous scenes. I felt like I learned quite a bit from watching this doc, plus it was often a visual delight revisiting (or seeing for the first time) some beauty from the film medium.here
sol Despair (1978) :ICM: Michael Ballhaus photography's is superb here with plenty of glides and fluid camera movements around glass wall interiors. Coupled against disquieting sound effects and music, Despair plays out like a semi-surreal nightmare as the delusion protagonist finds a man who he inexplicably believes to be his exact double and concocts a wild scheme. Dirk Bogarde very relatable throughout with desire to escape his life - and his despair at not being able to.here
sebby Angela (1995) :ICM: This film needs more champions. Tragicoming-of-age story that blends a gentle idyllic visual canvas with a series of increasingly dark circumstances that threaten to vault the eponymous character into a biblical abyss into which she is constantly peering. Her monsters can only be slain with the sword of a religious fervor that manifests as the peculiar and dangerous behavior the often accompanies childhood trauma.here
cinephage Liza, a rókatündér (2015) :ICM: It is a dark hungarian comedy, about a single woman who thinks she may be cursed in her relationship with men... There is a lot of invention in the storytelling, and the film definitely looks up to Kaurismaki as well as japanese pop music (a strange mix, certainly, but this film is overall rather unusual in its tone). It is rather funny, but certainly not naive. I had to rewatch it to notice a lot of subtle elements and nice touches.here
72aicm The Art of Flying (2015) :ICM: It’s only seven minutes long and it’s on our «movies on 0 official list» list.here
Melvelet Asha Jaoar Majhe (2014) :ICM: A decidedly arthouse movie from an interesting part of the world that unfortunately most commonly shown through Bollywood and seldom explored (film-wise) by non-domestic viewers. The film is about a married couple who work in opposite shifts to make ends meet in a recession hit Calcutta. But even though they're under constant pressure to sustain their livelihood, their behaviour displays a strange, comforting calmness as we observe their daily lifestyles with fine details. The simplicity of the dialogue-free story is contrasted by the rich sensory experience that gives Labour of Love a meditative, poetic feeling.here

Official Lists:
ICM Forum's 500<400
(But check eligibility - 48 films are currently ineligible. When you sort by checks (i.e., above link), everything above Tretya meshchanskaya (1927) has at least 400 checks.)

Unofficial Lists:
1000<400 (2019 Update)
(But check eligibility - Everything from Red Army downwards is currently eligible.)

500<400 films which still have <400 checks (from all editions)

Participants:
Rank Participant Count Check count: MeanMedian500<400501-1000neither1>500<400nom. watched byuser watches
1 flavo5000 222 74.7 35.5 2 3 78 :ICM: 1 3
2 blueboybob 215 85.2 48.0 2 9 88 - - 0
3 hurluberlu 119 101.9 48.5 6 6 106 - - 0
4 allisoncm 105 60.5 23.0 4 3 53 - - 0
5 jdidaco 94 17.5 6.0 0 0 98 - - 1
6 psychotronicbeatnik 87 9.0 4.0 0 0 31 - - 0
7 PUNQ 80 20.4 10.5 0 0 0 - - 0
8 zzzorf 76 68.1 24.0 4 1 68 :ICM: 0 1
9 sol 63 87.4 36.0 1 1 41 :ICM: 2 0
10 Onderhond 61 57.3 19.0 1 1 59 :ICM: 3 0
11 beavis 58 66.3 34.0 1 4 53 :ICM: 1 3
12 lineuphere 50 77.7 31.5 4 6 40 - - 0
13 ororama 41 79.6 48.0 2 0 80 - - 0
14 VincentPrice 40 87.2 77.0 0 0 38 - - 0
15 RogerTheMovieManiac88 33 25.3 4.0 0 0 15 - - 0
16 maxwelldeux 30 107.4 69.0 0 1 11 :ICM: 1 2
17 OldAle1 29 90.6 44.0 1 1 12 - - 0
17 pitchorneirda 29 110.5 76.0 5 2 21 - - 1
19 AB537 24 280.7 311.0 1 1 7 - - 0
20 AdamH 23 152.7 153.0 8 0 3 - - 0
20 ChrisReynolds 23 61.4 1.0 0 0 3 - - 0
20 cinephage 23 130.4 96.0 7 0 1 :ICM: 0 0
23 vortexsurfer 22 80.0 24.0 1 0 19 - - 0
24 Melvelet 20 218.5 250.0 14 6 3 :ICM: 1 3
24 Obgeoff 20 133.5 130.0 1 0 0 - - 0
26 sebby 19 154.3 85.0 2 1 5 :ICM: 4 1
27 Lilarcor 16 48.6 8.5 0 1 15 - - 0
28 Cinepolis 14 127.2 59.0 0 0 14 - - 0
28 mightysparks 14 157.6 170.5 5 3 6 - - 0
30 blocho 13 172.6 167.0 2 2 7 :ICM: 3 1
30 Lonewolf2003 13 238.0 266.0 2 0 6 - - 0
32 frbrown 12 50.8 40.0 0 0 12 - - 0
33 72aicm 11 107.7 74.0 0 2 5 :ICM: 0 0
34 connordenney 10 130.0 117.0 1 0 7 - - 0
34 nimimerkillinen 10 40.1 25.0 0 1 8 - - 0
36 Mochard 7 165.3 187.0 0 0 7 - - 0
37 shugs 3 150.0 103.0 1 0 2 - - 0
- overall 1729 78.3 33.0 78 55 1022 - - 16

* The mean/median and 500<400 related stats count every entry as one (including mini-series and shorts)

Decade breakdown:
Decade Count
1910s 4
1920s 7
1930s 27
1940s 54
1950s 60
1960s 113
1970s 364
1980s 87
1990s 58
2000s 98
2010s 293
2020s 55

(takes into account all entries posted until post #352 and all entries with IMDb links posted afterwards)

Country breakdown
Decade Count
USA 345
France 205
West Germany 93
UK 84
Italy 74
Germany 68
Japan 64
Canada 50
Switzerland 41
Austria 30
Spain 30
Australia 29
Belgium 28
Sweden 24
Argentina 22
Hong Kong 22
Soviet Union 19
Czechoslovakia 15
Israel 15
Poland 15
Brazil 13
Denmark 12
East Germany 12
Netherlands 12
China 11
India 10
Mexico 10
Portugal 10
Taiwan 10
Hungary 8
Yugoslavia 8
Ireland 7
Greece 6
South Korea 6
Iran 5
Luxembourg 5
Turkey 5
Chile 4
Cuba 4
Georgia 4
Norway 4
Qatar 4
South Africa 4
Finland 3
Liechtenstein 3
Puerto Rico 3
Romania 3
Russia 3
Venezuela 3
Bulgaria 2
Colombia 2
Croatia 2
Iceland 2
Indonesia 2
Lebanon 2
Lithuania 2
Morocco 2
Philippines 2
Sweden 2
Tunisia 2
Angola 1
Burkina Faso 1
Chad 1
Côte d'Ivoire 1
Egypt 1
Ghana 1
Guatemala 1
Iraq 1
Kosovo 1
Kyrgyzstan 1
Macedonia 1
Monaco 1
Mozambique 1
New Zealand 1
Niger 1
Pakistan 1
Senegal 1
Serbia 1
Ukraine 1
Uruguay 1
Vietnam 1


(takes into account all entries posted until post #352 and all entries with IMDb links posted afterwards and uses all co-production countries listed in the film's OMDB entry)
Movies that have been challenged more than once
Times challenged Name Year IMDBICM
4 An American Pickle 2020 :imdb: :ICM:
4 Manuel on the Island of Wonders 1984 :imdb: :ICM:
4 Angela 1995 :imdb: :ICM:
4 Visaaranai 2015 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Numéro deux 1975 :imdb: :ICM:
3 The Fourth Portrait 2010 :imdb: :ICM:
3 An Injury to One 2002 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Alexandra's Project 2003 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Pays de cocagne 1971 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Vedreba 1967 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Nothing More 2001 :imdb: :ICM:
3 These Final Hours 2013 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Big Animal 2000 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Welfare 1975 :imdb: :ICM:
3 Nebulosan 1999 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Street Smart 1987 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Vem var Dracula? 1974 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Succubus 1968 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Never Let Go 1960 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Adventure in the Hopfields 1954 :imdb: :ICM:
2 For Ever Mozart 1996 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Count Dracula 1970 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Rapture 1965 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Stations of the Cross 2014 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Alone in the Wilderness 2004 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Dementia 1955 :imdb: :ICM:
2 A Simple Event 1974 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Cybernetics Guardian 1989 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Blackfoot Trail 2014 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Ares 2016 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Time for Revenge 1981 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Don Giovanni 1970 :imdb: :ICM:
2 I Love You, I Kill You 1971 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Why Does Herr R. Run Amok? 1970 :imdb: :ICM:
2 The Last Years of Childhood 1979 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Last Stop on the Night Train 1975 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Baal 1970 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Darktown Strutters 1975 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Eden and After 1970 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Hunting Scenes from Bavaria 1969 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Breaker! Breaker! 1977 :imdb: :ICM:
2 The Cassandra Crossing 1976 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Despair 1978 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Bloody Mama 1970 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Dead Man's Letters 1986 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Justin de Marseille 1935 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Lola Pater 2017 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Avanti popolo 1986 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Dossier 51 1978 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Muddy River 1981 :imdb: :ICM:
2 The Last of Sheila 1973 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Game Girls 2018 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Tenet 2020 :imdb: :ICM:
2 What We Become 2015 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Slaughter 1972 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Von Richthofen and Brown 1971 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Alambrista! 1977 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Hagazussa 2017 :imdb: :ICM:
2 A Safe Place 1971 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Dying at Grace 2003 :imdb: :ICM:
2 A Summer at Grandpa's 1984 :imdb: :ICM:
2 The Gambler 1974 :imdb: :ICM:
2 The Blue Bull 2008 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Jerichow 2008 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Autrefois J'ai aime une femme 1966 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Paradistorg 1977 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Catwalk: From Glada Hudik to New York 2020 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Tomorrow We Move 2004 :imdb: :ICM:
2 The Killer Inside Me 1976 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Hickey & Boggs 1972 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Hero of the Red Light District 1960 :imdb: :ICM:
2 La Vérité 1960 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Musume tsuma haha 1960 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Macario 1960 :imdb: :ICM:
2 Hiroshima: A Document of the Atomic Bombing 1970 :imdb: :ICM:

Post contents partially stolen from maxwelldeux & Gershwin
Last edited by Melvelet on September 2nd, 2020, 9:52 am, edited 71 times in total.
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zzzorf
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#2

Post by zzzorf »

So just checking the bonus rules before we dive into the challenge proper. We only get to nominate 1 movie in the 1>500<400 throughout the month and there won't be a chance for extra movies if we watch nominated movies or our choice is watched multiple times like the DTC challenge a few months ago?
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#3

Post by maxwelldeux »

I have it on VERY good authority that the person who edited the OP image is a major asshole.
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#5

Post by 72aicm »

I’m in for a couple. Thanks for hosting Melvelet.
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#6

Post by AdamH »

I'm in as well. Personally, I think if you watch a film and it's on 399 checks and you're the 400th checker it should count as well. I don't think it does going by the rules in the OP. If the point is to watch films with <400 checks then I definitely think it should count.
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#7

Post by AdamH »

Already mention in the OP but I'm keeping this list up-to-date and it includes all films that have appeared over the 8 versions of 500<400 which are still eligible (688 films). It includes a decent number of shorts as well and you can sort the list by runtime.

There's also still 453/500 with <400 checks in the 2019 500<400 list and 26 shorts in the current list (here). Only 3/26 shorts have reached 400 checks over the past year.
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#8

Post by Melvelet »

zzzorf wrote: July 30th, 2020, 9:57 pm So just checking the bonus rules before we dive into the challenge proper. We only get to nominate 1 movie in the 1>500<400 throughout the month and there won't be a chance for extra movies if we watch nominated movies or our choice is watched multiple times like the DTC challenge a few months ago?
I'm open to change the rules for this and I'm all for rules that encourage people to see (more) nominations instead of just creating a big list of movies that nobody watched.
What do the others say? Allow multiple nominations and if yes, after how many nominations watched? 5? 10?
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#9

Post by Melvelet »

AdamH wrote: July 31st, 2020, 12:04 pm I'm in as well. Personally, I think if you watch a film and it's on 399 checks and you're the 400th checker it should count as well. I don't think it does going by the rules in the OP. If the point is to watch films with <400 checks then I definitely think it should count.
Fair point. Although it also depends on how strongly the challenge is tied to 500<400. Anyway, the challenge is more about the watching, not the posting so I feel mathematically compelled to accept movies that have 399 checks when the viewing is starting ;)
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#10

Post by AdamH »

Melvelet wrote: July 31st, 2020, 1:56 pm
AdamH wrote: July 31st, 2020, 12:04 pm I'm in as well. Personally, I think if you watch a film and it's on 399 checks and you're the 400th checker it should count as well. I don't think it does going by the rules in the OP. If the point is to watch films with <400 checks then I definitely think it should count.
Fair point. Although it also depends on how strongly the challenge is tied to 500<400. Anyway, the challenge is more about the watching, not the posting so I feel mathematically compelled to accept movies that have 399 checks when the viewing is starting ;)
What about if it has 399 checks when you start watching it and then someone else checks it halfway through you watching it so it has 400 when you check it? Just kidding :D
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#11

Post by VincentPrice »

1 Where's Poppa?-1970: 7/10 (114 checks)
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#12

Post by sol »

1. The Blood Demon (1967) 88 checks

Image

The first half-hour here moves incredibly slowly with repetitive scenes of the protagonist searching for answers and trying to find someone to give him a ride. Once he arrives in a forest with his travelling companions though, the film becomes a blast. From the blue fog that illuminates the forest to grisly torture devices, traps and so on inside the castle destination, it is all quite spooky, though the tonally inconsistent final few minutes leave a sour taste.
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#13

Post by Melvelet »

1. Midaregumo — a.k.a. Two in the Shadow (1967) 8/10 (141 checks) - https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0061971/
The subtle art of Japanese melodrama. That's why I love it.

In general I'm quite in the mood for Japanese movies, there have been sooo many newly subbed movies (in addition to the overwhelming amount that had been available before) in my semi-absense and, apparently, I only watched about 10 Japanese movies over the course of the past 5 years...
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#14

Post by sol »

The <400 Blows
1. The Blood Demon (1967) 88 checks

2. Mark of the Devil (1970) 219 checks

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Opening with graphic depictions of a man being tarred and feathered and two women being burned alive at the stake, this look at the witch hunt trials of centuries ago is captivating from the get-go and things only get more intriguing as the film goes on. The chief antagonists all abuse their power with the film providing a scathing look at absolute power corrupting absolutely. Reggie Nalder is particularly well cast one of the more vicious witch-finders.
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#15

Post by sol »

The <400 Blows
1. The Blood Demon (1967) 88 checks
2. Mark of the Devil (1970) 219 checks

3. The Cat and the Canary (1939) 337 checks

Image

If not as visually arresting as Paul Leni's silent adaptation or as zany as Radley Metzger's take, this is a pretty decent screen treatment of John Willard's oft filmed stage play with Bob Hope as a cocky film actor who keeps comparing everything happen to how it would play out in a movie. The film also gets good mileage from Hope constantly being scared despite acting so brave. If more effective as a comedy than horror, this is spooky too at times.
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#16

Post by Onderhond »

Such an easy challenge, hardly anybody watches contemporary Chinese/Japanese cinema :D

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01. The Tears of the Great Sage (2020) 1 check - 2.5* by Frankie Chung

Another Monkey King/Journey to the West adaptation, but of the B-grade fantasy kind that is currently flooding the Chinese market. Demand is bigger than what the big studios can offer, so smaller production houses are cranking out these films at breakneck speed. It's a bit of a minefield, quality-wise, but from time to time you can find a gem in the rough. Tears of no Regret has so much CG it's practically an animated film. The actors are real humans, but they spend most of the time in CG-generated backgrounds, performing CG-assisted tricks. At least the art design is pretty interesting, very colorful, rather lush and well over the top. The CG isn't perfect, but aesthetically it's pretty cool. The rest of the film isn't up to par though. Performances are flaky, the story feels incredibly rushed (then again, the film is only 70 minutes long) and there are some musical interludes that are completely out of place. Not a great film, but it was interesting enough to keep me entertained for as long as it lasted.


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02. The Big Score (1990) 1 check - 2.5* by Jing Wong

A pretty basic but amusing Jing Wong vehicle. A combination of action, comedy and of course, a handful of gambling scenes. It's not a big surprise I only caught this film so late in my quest to finish his oeuvre, as it's unremarkable in just about every way possible, at the same time it did end up being pretty entertaining. Jing Wong teams up with Danny Lee and joins him in front of the camera. Not the best acting duo every put on screen, but the two have enough chemistry to guide you through the film. Because there are quite a few genre switches and because Wong had plenty of prior experience with all of them, the pacing is solid and there isn't really a dull moment in sight. Visually it doesn't look too bad, but if you've seen a couple of these early 90s Hong Kong action/comedy flicks you'll know what to expect. The soundtrack is incredibly cheesy though, cheap and distracting. Though a little hard to recommend, people who can stand Wong's film and have seen the bigger projects in his oeuvre are sure to have a bit of fun with this one.


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03. Double World (2019) 17 checks - 3.5* by Teddy Chan

Another milestone for Netflix. This is the first time they're dropping a big budget Chinese epic right onto their platform. Covid-19 is definitely offering them an advantage when directors like Teddy Chan are skipping theatrical releases and going directly to streaming. It's a brave new world indeed. Double World is a pretty standard blockbuster fantasy. That means you should except a hefty dose of CG, some slightly confusing lore and a plot that is more focused on action set pieces and broad spectacle than on character development and smart plotting. It would be weird to except anything else. My main gripe is that the creature designs felt a little lazy, a fantasy film like this could've more inspiring creatures rather than giant scorpions and a basic dragon. But the action scenes are solid and the ending was pretty impressive. Not enough to make this a true classic, but if you want some fun filler then Double Word delivers.
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#17

Post by connordenney »

1. Next of Kin (Atom Egoyan, 1984) – 179 checks
2. The Enigmatic Case (Johnnie To & Yeung-Wah Kam, 1980) – 10 checks
Spoiler
1. Next of Kin (Atom Egoyan, 1984) – 179 checks
2. The Enigmatic Case (Johnnie To & Yeung-Wah Kam, 1980) – 10 checks
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#18

Post by blueboybob »

1. Un lugar en el mundo (1992) - 159 Checks
2. Dvadtsat dney bez voyny (1977) - 163 Checks
3. Tiempo de revancha (1981) - 88 Checks
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#19

Post by Mochard »

1. Le chant du loup (2019) - 6.5/10 - 187 checks

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In the near future, a French submarine finds itself in a crisis situation.

Seen 1 - Avg Checks - 187
Goal: To have less than 200 average checks by end of the challenge.

<400 Days of Summer
1. Le chant du loup (2019) - 6.5/10 - 187 checks
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#20

Post by Onderhond »

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04. Amulet (2020) 14 checks - 2.5* by Romola Garai

A brave attempt to marry social drama with religious body horror. It's a pretty unique combination, but not an easy one to pull off and Garai really struggles to find the right balance. The first half of the film is a little too slow and dreary, whereas the second half suddenly jumps into the horror head-on. Tomaz is an immigrant in London who roams the streets. A friendly nun looks after him and knows a place where he can crash. She takes him to Magda, a woman who lives alone with her sick mother. Tomaz isn't to keen on moving in with her, but his situation doesn't leave him much choice, and so he accepts the offer. Garai has trouble with setting the right tone. The music is quite special and leading, but it's not exactly thrilling. The effects are nothing less than impressive, but the cinematography leans too heavily on social drama aesthetics (like watching a Dardennes film), which again takes away from the atmosphere. In the end it feels like an intriguing film, but the potential remains unfulfilled.

The trick is to watch contemporary cinema
01. The Tears of the Great Sage (2020) 1 check - 2.5* by Frankie Chung
02. The Big Score (1990) 1 check - 2.5* by Jing Wong
03. Double World (2019) 17 checks - 3.5* by Teddy Chan
Last edited by Onderhond on August 2nd, 2020, 10:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#21

Post by Mochard »

2. Arès (2016) - 7/10 - 75 checks

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In a future France with many unemployed, big companies run the country. Ares is a loser boxer. When his sister's arrested, he agrees to a new drug, that'll help him win.

Seen 2 - Avg Checks - 131
Goal: To have less than 200 average checks by end of the challenge.

<400 Days of Summer
1. Le chant du loup (2019) - 6.5/10 - 187 checks
2. Arès (2016) - 7/10 - 75 checks

Total checks - 272
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#22

Post by maxwelldeux »

1. Breaker! Breaker! (1977) 257 checks

Chuck Norris fights corrupt town officials to save his brother. He's a trucker, so other truckers help? Trucks. Roundhouse kicks. You get the drift. 4/10
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#23

Post by mightysparks »

I have 54 films left to see in the top 20 of the 500>400 list (Rapture, Welfare, Final Cut - just saw it was over 400 checks, of course the one I was most interested in lol, I.... comme Icarre, Dying at Grace) so I'm in to finish those off.
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#24

Post by VincentPrice »

2. Murder is My Beat-1955: 7/10 (112 checks)
Spoiler
1. Where's Poppa?-1970: 7/10 (114 checks)
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#25

Post by Mochard »

3. Rsasa taycheh (2010) - 6/10 - 12 checks

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Noha is about to get married. Her family is relieved to see her take advantage of this last chance before officially becoming a spinster just like her sister. Everything seems to be going well. However, on this special Sunday of August 1976 in Lebanon, on the same evening her elder brother is organizing a dinner in her honor 15 days prior to the wedding, Noha changes her mind.

Seen 3 - Avg Checks - 91.3
Goal: To have less than 200 average checks by end of the challenge.
Super Goal: To have less than 100 average checks by end of the challenge.

<400 Days of Summer
1. Le chant du loup (2019) - 6.5/10 - 187 checks
2. Arès (2016) - 7/10 - 75 checks
3. Rsasa taycheh (2010) - 6/10 - 12 checks

Total checks - 274
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#26

Post by blueboybob »

4. Shirley Thompson Versus the Aliens (1972) - 6 checks
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#27

Post by sol »

The <400 Blows
1. The Blood Demon (1967) 88 checks
2. Mark of the Devil (1970) 219 checks
3. The Cat and the Canary (1939) 337 checks

4. The White Spider (1963) 4 checks

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The plot becomes increasingly twisted as it progresses here and while the film tends to get lost in its plot complications and the myriad of disguises worn by one particular character, there is still plenty of interest. The antagonist's murder weapon - a wire rope that he uses as a lasso - needs to be seen to be believed. The police interrogation bits are very well done too with bright lights that seem to spin around, and Karin Dor shines in the lead.
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#28

Post by AB537 »

1. Numéro deux (Jean-Luc Godard, 1975) 3/10 ... 333 checks
2. Bloody Mama (Roger Corman, 1970) 5.5/10 ... 332 checks
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#29

Post by Mochard »

4. Resgate (2019) - 6/10 - 1 check

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Newly released from prison, a man returning to his girlfriend and their child subsequently learns about a dangerous debt taken by his late mother.

Seen 4 - Avg Checks - 68.75
Goal: To have less than 200 average checks by end of the challenge.
Super Goal: To have less than 100 average checks by end of the challenge.

<400 Days of Summer
1. Le chant du loup (2019) - 6.5/10 - 187 checks
2. Arès (2016) - 7/10 - 75 checks
3. Rsasa taycheh (2010) - 6/10 - 12 checks
4. Resgate (2019) - 6/10 - 1 check

Total checks - 275
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#30

Post by zzzorf »

1. Satan's School for Girls (1973) - 7/10 - 53 checks
2. Mockingbird Don't Sing (2001) - 7/10 - 132 checks
3. The Tall Man (2011) - 7/10 - 12 checks

Bonus Challenge: 1>500<400 Challenge!
Movie: Amazonia
Year: 2013
Director: Thierry Ragobert
Country: Brazil/France
Checks: 44
iCM: https://www.icheckmovies.com/movies/amazonia-2013/
IMDb: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1240899/
Reason: This movie was a beautifully shot look at the Amazonian Jungle. A domestic Capuchin Monkey is stranded in the Amazon and encounters many perils as he investigates this vast forest. The original has no voice over which I think would work better here but there is a version out there with Martin Sheen doing a voiceover if anyone would prefer that (I have no idea how good that version is or if Sheen helps or hinders the movie)
My Original Review: 27 March 2018
Only two words are needed to describe this movie.

BRILLIANT

BEAUTIFUL

That is all there is to it.

OK well I better elaborate.

First of let me say that the first thing this movie made me think about was The Adventures of Milo and Otis, a movie i have loved since childhood. This movie was shot on the similar idea, letting the animals play out the parts naturally and shooting it in a sort of documentary style.

That is where Amazonia really outshines Milo and Otis however, the cinematography in this was absolutely superb. You can tell those behind the camera really put an effort into getting the best shots they could allowing for some amazing footage, with the variety of animals looking absolutely beautiful.

Where Amazonia misses out though, and the reason I pulled short of giving a perfect score, was the lack of a narrator ala Milo and Otis. I think the added bit of a storyteller just missed that extra little thing to get over that last hurdle and meet the entire audience. Just think of someone like Richard Attenborough or Morgan Freeman telling the monkey's story while we were watching. According to IMDb Martin Sheen does do a narration so one day I may go looking for one of those copies and it may just give it that extra edge it needs. All the same though this is a must watch for the movie is just

BRILLIANT

and

BEAUTIFUL.
Trailer:
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#31

Post by sol »

The <400 Blows
1. The Blood Demon (1967) 88 checks
2. Mark of the Devil (1970) 219 checks
3. The Cat and the Canary (1939) 337 checks
4. The White Spider (1963) 4 checks

5. Numéro Deux (1975) 335 checks

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Consisting almost entirely of filmed television sets on black backgrounds, this Jean-Luc Godard movie depicts a bickering, dysfunctional couple with two curious children. The filming style is very dynamic, especially whenever two screens are present. Godard plays around with the size of the screens and the second set often contradicts the other as Godard uses the screen as a symbolic filter here to force us to evaluate his truth at 24 frames per second.
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#32

Post by hurluberlu »

1. Dead Man's Letters / Pisma myortvogo cheloveka (Konstantin Lopushanskiy, 1986) [347 checks] [Rewatch] 8 (=)
2-4. Manuel on the Island of Wonders / Manoel dans l'île des merveilles (Raul Ruiz, 1984) [120 checks] 7+
5. Peckinpah Suite (Pedro González Bermúdez, 2019) [8 checks] [8 checks] 7-
6. Wallay (Berni Goldblat, 2017) [7 checks] 6+
7. Préjudice (Antoine Cuypers, 2015) [35 checks] 6-
Last edited by hurluberlu on August 2nd, 2020, 12:36 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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#33

Post by AdamH »

mightysparks wrote: August 2nd, 2020, 1:45 am I have 54 films left to see in the top 20 of the 500>400 list (Rapture, Welfare, Final Cut - just saw it was over 400 checks, of course the one I was most interested in lol, I.... comme Icarre, Dying at Grace) so I'm in to finish those off.
:thumbsup: Then you can move on to the top 50 after that. :cheers:
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#34

Post by mightysparks »

AdamH wrote: August 2nd, 2020, 10:08 am
mightysparks wrote: August 2nd, 2020, 1:45 am I have 54 films left to see in the top 20 of the 500>400 list (Rapture, Welfare, Final Cut - just saw it was over 400 checks, of course the one I was most interested in lol, I.... comme Icarre, Dying at Grace) so I'm in to finish those off.
:thumbsup: Then you can move on to the top 50 after that. :cheers:
:(
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#35

Post by Cinepolis »

1. Películas para no dormir: La habitación del niño (2006) [257 Checks] - 6.5/10 | https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0430164/
2. Nelisita (1983) [22 Checks] - 5/10 | https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0084401/
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#36

Post by sol »

The <400 Blows
1. The Blood Demon (1967) 88 checks
2. Mark of the Devil (1970) 219 checks
3. The Cat and the Canary (1939) 337 checks
4. The White Spider (1963) 4 checks
5. Numéro Deux (1975) 335 checks

6. Mumsy, Nanny, Sonny & Girly (1970) 149 checks

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Although nowhere as graphic and out-there as Singapore Sling, the Nikos Nikolaidis film might be the best comparison piece with its stranger sucked into a power play between two women who may or may not be mother and daughter. As for Girly, it is much more of a comedy and sometimes to the detriment of the outlandish premise. The satire is potent throughout though as the daughter keeps insisting "we're a happy family!" and maybe they are.
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#37

Post by zzzorf »

Spoiler
1. Satan's School for Girls (1973) - 7/10 - 53 checks
2. Mockingbird Don't Sing (2001) - 7/10 - 132 checks
3. The Tall Man (2011) - 7/10 - 12 checks
4-6. Manoel dans l'île des merveilles (1984) - 4/10 - 121 checks
7. Pisma myortvogo cheloveka (1986) - 6/10 - 348 checks
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#38

Post by Melvelet »

2. Kapò (1960) 8/10 (284 checks) - https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0052961/
Quite lucky for them that everybody in the concentration camp spoke Italian, no matter where they're from. Except if they were a German soldier.
Spoiler
1. Midaregumo — a.k.a. Two in the Shadow (1967) 8/10 (141 checks) - https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0061971/
2. Kapò (1960) 8/10 (284 checks) - https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0052961/
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#39

Post by Melvelet »

Updated the OP. And we got our first 1>500<400 nomination, Amazonia (2013), nominated by zzzorf.
Don't forget to post your nominations if you have more than 3 entries in this challenge if you're interested in watching other people's nominations!
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#40

Post by flavo5000 »

mightysparks wrote: August 2nd, 2020, 1:45 am I have 54 films left to see in the top 20 of the 500>400 list (Rapture, Welfare, Final Cut - just saw it was over 400 checks, of course the one I was most interested in lol, I.... comme Icarre, Dying at Grace) so I'm in to finish those off.
Dying at Grace is terrifying... Not in a good way...
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