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3rd Annual ICM Forum Secret Santa

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Fergenaprido
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3rd Annual ICM Forum Secret Santa

#1

Post by Fergenaprido »

What is Secret Santa?

The concept is simple, whoever wants to be involved either leave your interest (with your iCM ID so your gifter can check out what you have seen/like if they are not to familiar with your tastes and any preferences/restrictions) below or by PM. After a couple of days when I believe no one else will be joining in I will randomly assign everyone who is participating another participant to gift a movie to. Everyone then has a couple of days to assign your giftee a movie that you think they will enjoy which they haven't seen and send it to me via PM to me. Once I have everything in I will reveal everyone's movies and then we all just simply watch our given movie (preferably in December but that is not a hard rule) and then give it a quick review here in this thread to let your gifter know what you thought of it. It is then that you will find who gifted you your Christmas present. With the movies seen in this group I know the movies handed out will be of a high quality and outside the norm of what my other group gives.

In Summary:
To be involved you will need to:
Step 1: state your intention to be involved by putting your ICM name below along with any restrictions (eg. No longer than 3hrs, fits one of the December challenges) or preferences (eg. To lift the spirits, genre preference)
Step 2:.once I give you your random participant find a movie they haven't watched that fits their restrictions/preference and PM with it.
Step 3: watch your assigned movie and report back here.

2021 Thread
2020 Thread

How are these for deadlines?
Sign-up: Monday, November 28th, midnight
Choice of film: Thursday, December 1st, midnight


It's a quick turnaround, but that way I can reveal the films over the first weekend in December and people can get a start on finding/watching them.
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#2

Post by zzzorf »

While I'm not hosting I'm definitely in.

https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/zzzorf/

I have no restrictions as I will watch anything but I do say my main love for this forum is the obscurities it delivers my way.
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#3

Post by RogerTheMovieManiac88 »

Thanks for keeping zzzorf's tradition going, Ferg!

I'd love to be a part of this merry exchange once again.

https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/r ... emaniac88/

Something not exceeding 100 minutes would appeal. I wouldn't mind a grindhouse or cult choice, but I'm open to pretty much anything.
That's all, folks!
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#4

Post by Onderhond »

Count me in!

For those who don't know me yet, I prefer contemporary cinema, love a good mix of genre and auteur, and films that are not too long (which translates to something < 120m).
https://www.onderhond.com/movies (for everything I've seen so far)
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#5

Post by sol »

In.

https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/sol-/

Prerequisites

<400 checks
44-134 minutes long
Something I can find online

Preferences (not essential)

<350 checks
60-105 minutes
Horror, sci-fi, mystery, thriller or comedy

Subgenres that tend to work well for me:
Spoiler
Neon cinema
Paranoia thriller
Conspiracy thriller
Cubesque thriller
Reality blurs
Body horror
Cronenberg-influenced horror
Time loop and/or time paradox
Unfriended-style 'screen' thriller
Closed room murder mystery
Father/daughter relationship
Girl coming-of-age drama
Personal identity dramas
Courtroom drama
Confidence tricksters
Hong Kong action
Martial arts action
Meta horror
Meta comedy
Heist comedy/thriller
Body swap comedy
Slapstick comedy
Silent comedy
Revenge
Subgenres that do NOT tend to work well for me:
Spoiler
Found footage
Samurai
Superhero
Space Opera
Torture porn
Misery porn
Melodrama
Arthouse drama
Dialogue-heavy drama
Historical/costume drama
Boy's Own style adventures
Films where "nothing happens"
Films just about "the vibes"
Fantasy action
J-Horror
K-Horror
Vampires
Mythical creatures
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Long live the new flesh!
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#6

Post by filmbantha »

Thanks for hosting ferg. Here's what I posted last time and the same still stands:

'I'll watch pretty much anything but I'm not interested in documentaries. The links in my signature should be useful if my santa isn't sure what type of films I enjoy.'

Here is my icm profile: https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/filmbantha/
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#7

Post by St. Gloede »

I'm in.

Open to more or less anything (including documentaries - oh Bantha!).

If you don't know my tastes I have leanings towards films that go beyond being just narrative cinema, be that something more visceral and immersive or something more Brechtian. Surrealism, minimalism, essay films, etc. is always appreciated, as is films that just look damn stunning (or purposefully go against beauty norms).

(I still love a good narrative as well, so recommend away)

Fav directors: JLG, Bunuel, Pasolini, Varda, Yoshida, Bergman, Kurosawa, Bresson, Haneke, Scorsese, Maddin, Murnau, Rohmer
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#8

Post by pitchorneirda »

I'm in :) https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/pitchorneirda/

Less than 140 minutes; no westerns or action-driven movies in general.

I like essay films or anything out of the ordinary.
Examples of films watched recently in that spirit: Museum Hours (2012, Jem Cohen); Chain (2004, Jem Cohen); De weg naar het zuiden (1981, Johan van der Keuken); Sophie's Place (1986, Larry Jordan)
"Art is like a fire, it is born from the very thing it burns" - Jean-Luc Godard
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#9

Post by shugs »

I'm in https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/shugs/

Looking for either horror or something action packed. Maybe from Asia. My tastes are pretty mainstream :letbxd: My best viewings this year
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#10

Post by flavo5000 »

I'm in again! I'll watch pretty much anything I haven't seen. My tastes are all over the place but I do tend to like genre stuff, and I'm not a fan of a lot of overly pretentious slow cinema.
https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/flavo5000/
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#11

Post by clemmetarey »

I'm in: https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/clemmetarey/

I usually prefer slow cinema, horror, films with clever discussions, but I'm open to discovering some obscure favorite of my santa.
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#12

Post by sortile9io »

Something I can watch with smart kids or that deals with the religious side of Christmas, please. Thanks for hosting, Fer.

https://www.icheckmovies.com/profiles/sortile9io/

:smilz19:
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#14

Post by Fergenaprido »

zzzorf wrote: ↑December 4th, 2022, 9:43 pm How is this progressing? We are a few days past the given dates now
Oh f*ck. I forgot about it. :facepalm:

I'mma do it right now.

Edit: Also, I'm participating. Realized I didn't make that clear in the first post. No preferences, just hopefully something you'll think I'll enjoy.
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#15

Post by Fergenaprido »

Secret Santa 2022 Participants:

zzzorf
RogerTheMovieManiac88
Onderhond
sol
filmbantha
St. Gloede
pitchorneirda
shugs
flavo5000
clemmetarey
sortile9io
Fergenaprido

I randomized the names and then used this fun wheel to assign the Santas: https://wheelofnames.com/

PMs have been sent to everyone with their assignee. Once I have all the film choices from everyone, I'll reveal the full list.
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#16

Post by zzzorf »

I have used that wheel many a time for this exact purpose in my Facebook groups based around this sort of activity.
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#17

Post by Fergenaprido »

Fergenaprido wrote: ↑December 4th, 2022, 11:05 pm PMs have been sent to everyone with their assignee. Once I have all the film choices from everyone, I'll reveal the full list.
I have 10 gifts wrapped, just waiting for two more. ^_^
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#18

Post by pitchorneirda »

Awfully sorry for the delay, I'm on it, I'll send you my pick ASAP
"Art is like a fire, it is born from the very thing it burns" - Jean-Luc Godard
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#19

Post by Fergenaprido »

All right, we have everyone's gifts now, so Christmas is coming two weeks early for all you kiddies.

Secret Santa 2022 Participants and their gifts:

zzzorf - The Mudge Boy (2003)
RogerTheMovieManiac88 - Weatherwoman (1995)
Onderhond - Red Nights (2010)
sol - Radioland Murders (1994)
filmbantha - Thief (1981)
St. Gloede - Marinetti (1969)
pitchorneirda - Salt for Svanetia (1930)
shugs - A Chinese Ghost Story (1987)
flavo5000 - Back to the USSR (1992)
clemmetarey - I, Pierre Rivière, Having Slaughtered My Mother, My Sister and My Brother... (1976)
sortile9io - Where the Wild Things Are (2009)
Fergenaprido - Animal Farm (1954)

Some Santas included some notes behind why they picked the film they did, but I'm going to hold off on sharing those until after the secret is revealed so as to not give anything away. Also, I recommend not trying to see who has already checked the film until after you watch your gift, as it may or may not give things away and ruin the surprise (though at least one person gifted a film they hadn't already seen themself). ;)

Also, fun fact, the order in which I received the films was in a chain a few times. i.e. I received the gift for Person Z from Person Y, then for Person Y from Person X, then for Person X from Person W.

Ho Ho Ho and Merry Christmas. Enjoy :)
Last edited by Fergenaprido on December 10th, 2022, 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#21

Post by flavo5000 »

Thanks, Ferg! And thanks to whoever my secret santa is. Back to the USSR looks like an interesting one!
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#22

Post by filmbantha »

Thanks for organising Ferg, and thanks Santa for picking Thief for me. Looking forward to watching it, definitely seems like a film I would enjoy. I like everything I've seen by Michael Mann so that bodes well :thumbsup:
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#23

Post by clemmetarey »

I think I know who my santa is :P. I have a copy available, so I might watch it tonight.
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#24

Post by Onderhond »

Looking forward to my present, thanks in advance!
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#25

Post by sortile9io »

I may wait until Christmas to open my present, as usual. It seems that Santa (no idea who he is, probably not Onderhond) found easier to pick something for the smart kids instead of the religious thing. Let's see how it works, apparently it looks a bit unconventional mix. Thanks in advance.
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#26

Post by St. Gloede »

Seems like my santa went our and found the most experimental work he (I believe all santas this year are men) could think of, and well ...

Thanks Santa!

Marinetti (1969, Albie Thoms)

Image

I have to admit that my knowledge of Marinetti was so limited I had to look him up after seeing the film, so I will have to thank Thoms for including a 10-15 minute talk about him and his work and history by two giggling intellectuals, musing about his connection to Fascism and Mussolini, and connecting him to other movements - oh, and all this while the screen is completely blank, mainly showing a static black image, alternating with bright white. The idea of anti-film is brought up from time to time, and with respect to Marinetti's declaration against the past, wishing to destroy libraries, academics, etc. it is pointedly fitting and showing an amusing lack of respect for, well, everything, subject matter and possibly even audiences (at least those somehow tuning in for traditional aesthetics) alike.

What is said by the commentators, or our later narrator, is held in such esteem that music and sound effects will often be played as they speak, swallowing their words, as the visuals, after the empty lull of the beginning, take the forefront in an increasingly abstract fashion. What starts out as something arguably intimate, showing the life of our director, partner and those around him, shot without audio and cut together as a lyrical dance, with thoughts and ideas read aloud to accompany what we see, become increasingly structural. The visuals, the tone, the crassness - complete with nudity and suggestive sexual elements - mirror Marinetti's futurist movement and divorces itself just as strongly from the past. The sentiment does certainly seem far less "fascistic" if you will, with clearer left-wing implications, but the respect for the form, or shall we say respectful disrespect is simply incredible.

Marinetti is a psychedelic patchwork comparable to Pierre ClΓ©menti, if he was patching together shots by Stephen Dowskin and scratching them up like Bruce Conner and creating hypnotic shapes like Hans Richter and Man Ray. It is a stunning if not at first a trying viewing, and one that by the end had thoroughly won me over.

9/10
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#27

Post by flavo5000 »

Image
Back to the USSR - takaisin Ryssiin (Jari Halonen, 1992)
My secret santa gifted me this incredibly offbeat Finnish comedy, and I gotta say, it was definitely pretty interesting with some really bizarre turns in the narrative I didn't see coming. It mainly is about this abrasive suicidal communist who finds that the world he lives in wants no part of him, so after failing at trying to kill himself (he finds his neck too strong to break from gritting his teeth so much... :lol: ), he meets up with another guy who is perceived to be an outcast he can commiserate with at which point they hit the road to find the real USSR that was left behind. Along the way he discovers his friend is a vampire, so there's also that. While I didn't wholeheartedly love this film (the narrative seemed like kind of a mess and at times characters seemed to do random things that made no sense), I definitely liked parts of it and thought overall it worked pretty well as a black absurdist comedy. Having said that, it did feel. like there was something I didn't quite get culturally that made some of the character motivations seem really confusing, but given the nature of the film, it's possible I wasn't missing anything and they were just behaving in totally bizarre ways for no reason. Still, I enjoyed it and appreciated whoever gifted this to me for finding a flick on a list I haven't seen as many from.
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#28

Post by Fergenaprido »

St. Gloede wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 12:22 pm Seems like my santa went our and found the most experimental work he (I believe all santas this year are men) could think of, and well ...

Thanks Santa!

Marinetti (1969, Albie Thoms)
Your Secret Santa was Roger.
"I've gone with an experimental pick for Gloede that might I hope tickle his fancy."
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#29

Post by Fergenaprido »

flavo5000 wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 4:22 pm Back to the USSR - takaisin Ryssiin (Jari Halonen, 1992)
You're Secret Santa was me. :D

I almost didn't pick this because I was one of only 2 participants to have seen it and I thought it would be a dead giveaway. I wanted to find something genre-ish and went through a bunch of options, with my final choice between this one and Happy End (I was surprised that you haven't seen it yet). I went with this one because it was more obscure and from a film country you didn't seem to have explored much. So I'm glad it worked out. :)
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#30

Post by St. Gloede »

Fergenaprido wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 9:22 pm
St. Gloede wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 12:22 pm Seems like my santa went our and found the most experimental work he (I believe all santas this year are men) could think of, and well ...

Thanks Santa!

Marinetti (1969, Albie Thoms)
Your Secret Santa was Roger.
"I've gone with an experimental pick for Gloede that might I hope tickle his fancy."
He was very right indeed. Wouldn't mind Roger gifting me a few more.
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#31

Post by zzzorf »

Fergenaprido wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 9:26 pm
flavo5000 wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 4:22 pm Back to the USSR - takaisin Ryssiin (Jari Halonen, 1992)
You're Secret Santa was me. :D

I almost didn't pick this because I was one of only 2 participants to have seen it and I thought it would be a dead giveaway. I wanted to find something genre-ish and went through a bunch of options, with my final choice between this one and Happy End (I was surprised that you haven't seen it yet). I went with this one because it was more obscure and from a film country you didn't seem to have explored much. So I'm glad it worked out. :)
Well back to the drawing board for me. I looked at my gift and thought, well this seems like a Ferg pick to me. Guess I was wrong.
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#32

Post by Fergenaprido »

zzzorf wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 9:38 pm
Fergenaprido wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 9:26 pm
flavo5000 wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 4:22 pm Back to the USSR - takaisin Ryssiin (Jari Halonen, 1992)
You're Secret Santa was me. :D

I almost didn't pick this because I was one of only 2 participants to have seen it and I thought it would be a dead giveaway. I wanted to find something genre-ish and went through a bunch of options, with my final choice between this one and Happy End (I was surprised that you haven't seen it yet). I went with this one because it was more obscure and from a film country you didn't seem to have explored much. So I'm glad it worked out. :)
Well back to the drawing board for me. I looked at my gift and thought, well this seems like a Ferg pick to me. Guess I was wrong.
:lol:

I mean, you're not wrong. When I saw that it was selected for you I immediately thought "Yep, sounds like a zzzorf film for sure" :D
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#33

Post by flavo5000 »

Fergenaprido wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 9:26 pm
flavo5000 wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 4:22 pm Back to the USSR - takaisin Ryssiin (Jari Halonen, 1992)
You're Secret Santa was me. :D

I almost didn't pick this because I was one of only 2 participants to have seen it and I thought it would be a dead giveaway. I wanted to find something genre-ish and went through a bunch of options, with my final choice between this one and Happy End (I was surprised that you haven't seen it yet). I went with this one because it was more obscure and from a film country you didn't seem to have explored much. So I'm glad it worked out. :)
Thanks! Yea, not sure why I haven't gotten around to Happy End yet. It does seem like one I'd like. It's on my seemingly endless list of things I want to watch. I think with that one it just hasn't snugly fit into any challenges I've been participating in lately.
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#34

Post by RogerTheMovieManiac88 »

St. Gloede wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 12:22 pm Seems like my santa went our and found the most experimental work he (I believe all santas this year are men) could think of, and well ...

Thanks Santa!
I'm glad that Thoms' experimental feature worked for you as a Christmas prezzie. Your review is really lovely, and has helped me with grasping the intent behind the opening scene.

I watched this for Ferg's Australia poll earlier this year and was ultimately blown away by it, after the slightly distancing opening 15 minutes. To find something for you, I searched on IMDb for 1960s and '70s films with a low vote count and then ordered results by my rating. This one stood out very quickly and I had chosen it and sent it along to Ferg in the space of 10 minutes.

Wishing you and yours a very Happy Christmas, Gloede!
That's all, folks!
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#35

Post by St. Gloede »

RogerTheMovieManiac88 wrote: ↑December 12th, 2022, 10:52 pm To find something for you, I searched on IMDb for 1960s and '70s films with a low vote count and then ordered results by my rating.
:lol: :lol: :lol:

Sounds like you discovered the secret quick-fire method of pleasing Chris.

If you had any runner-up recommendations feel free to share these as well. :cheers:
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#36

Post by filmbantha »

Thank you Santa for picking Thief. I enjoyed seeing the intricacies of a safe cracker at work although I felt short changed with the amount of robberies we actually see during the film. Frank's back story is very engaging, and his admission of this to Jessie is one of the film's highlights, with Caan being entirely convincing in his embodiment of a person with nothing left to lose. I have a huge soft spot for 80s synth soundtracks so having Tangerine Dream involved was a big plus. It's a striking and gritty thriller, containing all of the right elements that would usually appeal to me though for some reason, it didn't quite come together as one of Mann's better works. I'm glad to have seen it - I'm currently working on the DtC list (albeit very slowly) so it was a nice bonus to get another check on that list, and I gave it a 6/10, though maybe this would be rounded up to 7 on a revisit, knowing that the film is less about heists and more of a character drama. I feel like the Action genre tag on IMDB is also somewhat misleading.

In terms of who picked this, let's try and narrow it down! I feel like Onderhond, Sol, Zzzorf, Clem and Flavo would probably have gifted me an obscure horror so I don't think it was from any of them. I also imagine Gloede may have plumped for an art house offering though I'm not fully ruling him out at this stage. We know Roger and Ferg's choices so that leaves it with potentially being either Pitch, Shugs or Sortile. I'm not going to be cheeky and check if they have actually seen Thief to narrow it down any further. So let's take a punt and guess that it was Sortile9i0?

Whoever it was, thank you very much for a well thought out choice. I'm a fan of Mann's work; gritty, downbeat thrillers, and 80s synth soundtracks so this was a strong pick and well considered even if it didn't quite hit the sweet spot for me :thumbsup:
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#37

Post by sortile9io »

filmbantha wrote: ↑December 13th, 2022, 5:03 pm ... so that leaves it with potentially being either Pitch, Shugs or Sortile. I'm not going to be cheeky and check if they have actually seen Thief to narrow it down any further. So let's take a punt and guess that it was Sortile9i0?
Oops, wrong guess. Michael Mann is not my type. Want to try another one before Fer comes back?
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#38

Post by Fergenaprido »

filmbantha wrote: ↑December 13th, 2022, 5:03 pm Thank you Santa for picking Thief.

so that leaves it with potentially being either Pitch, Shugs or Sortile. I'm not going to be cheeky and check if they have actually seen Thief to narrow it down any further. So let's take a punt and guess that it was Sortile9i0?

Whoever it was, thank you very much for a well thought out choice. I'm a fan of Mann's work; gritty, downbeat thrillers, and 80s synth soundtracks so this was a strong pick and well considered even if it didn't quite hit the sweet spot for me :thumbsup:
Your Secret Santa was shugs :)
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#39

Post by filmbantha »

Fergenaprido wrote: ↑December 13th, 2022, 8:05 pm
filmbantha wrote: ↑December 13th, 2022, 5:03 pm Thank you Santa for picking Thief.

so that leaves it with potentially being either Pitch, Shugs or Sortile. I'm not going to be cheeky and check if they have actually seen Thief to narrow it down any further. So let's take a punt and guess that it was Sortile9i0?

Whoever it was, thank you very much for a well thought out choice. I'm a fan of Mann's work; gritty, downbeat thrillers, and 80s synth soundtracks so this was a strong pick and well considered even if it didn't quite hit the sweet spot for me :thumbsup:
Your Secret Santa was shugs :)
Aha! So I might have got there given one more guess. Thanks for your pick Shugs, cool that you got to return the favour of me being your secret santa last year :cheers:
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#40

Post by shugs »

filmbantha wrote: ↑December 13th, 2022, 8:31 pm Aha! So I might have got there given one more guess. Thanks for your pick Shugs, cool that you got to return the favour of me being your secret santa last year :cheers:
:ph43r: :cheers:

Glad you somewhat enjoyed Thief. It's definitely a movie that grows on you on further rewatches.

I'll get to watch my present in a few days, it's actually a movie I've been meaning to see for some time now (and its sequels). Nice choice, Santa!
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