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Which films Did You See Last Week? 02/06/19 - 08/06/19

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sol
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Which films Did You See Last Week? 02/06/19 - 08/06/19

#1

Post by sol » June 9th, 2019, 12:00 pm

Which Films Did You See Last Week?

Please share with us which films you saw last week. It would be great if you could include some comments on each film. It would be awesome if you could also take some time to comment on everyone else's viewings (if you're like me, "real life" sometimes gets in the way, so no need to feel obliged).

This is what I saw:

Not as poor a movie-watching week as all of the one-star reviews might suggest. Most are simply mediocrities; Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is the only film among them that I really hated.

★★★★ = loved it / ★★★ = liked it a lot / ★★ = has interesting elements; somewhat recommended / ★ = did very little for me; not recommended

A Strong Man (1929). Hungry for fame and fortune, a writer encourages his best friend to commit suicide so that he can steal and sell his brilliant manuscript, but ill-gotten success takes a toll in this Polish silent movie. The film begins well with some intriguing morality play (his wife is so tired of being poor that she condones his heinous crime) and lots of innovative dissolve editing. Words also effectively appear over images at times - most strikingly, the word 'slawa' (fame) coming out of his friend's chest as he listens to the story and realises just how much money he could make from selling it. Alas, the middle of section of the film is far less ambitious, both stylistically and as a narrative, with dramatic tension only coming back in the last fifteen minutes. The film certainly ends on a bang though with some great reaction shots and angular compositions. (first viewing, online) ★★★

Macao (1952). Mistaken for an undercover detective, an American criminal becomes an assassination target while romancing a female pickpocket with singing ambitions in this ambitious if overstuffed noir entry, shot on location in the titular Chinese region. The authentic locations are great and with lots of snappy banter between leads Robert Mitchum and Jane Russell, the film gets off to a good start. The mistaken identity subplot adds much tension too. As the film progresses though, it becomes increasingly difficult to work out what the filmmakers were aiming for. The romance feels at odds to the detective and international intrigue angle and it is no surprise to learn that the movie had a rocky production history, transferred from Josef von Sternberg to Nicholas Ray - who producer Howard Hughes asked to partially rewrite the film after firing von Sternberg. (first viewing, VHS) ★★

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954). Six unmarried brothers desire a wife of their own when their eldest sibling marries on a whim in this bizarrely celebrated musical that was inexplicable nominated for the Best Picture Oscar in its day. In all fairness, the songs are not half-bad and the spirited choreography (especially during a barn-raising scene) is top-notch, but as a narrative the film is dead. The plot is never credible for an instance, with the oldest brother magically convincing the first woman he finds to marry him within seconds of meeting her (!). The attempts to derive comic relief from the younger brothers constantly brawling like two-year-olds are woeful too. There is an awkward kidnapping subplot too and throughout all this, the characters remain interchangeable and uninteresting. Even with notable song and dance bits, this feels utterly worthless. (first viewing, DVD) ★

Picnic (1955). Visiting a college buddy, an aimless and unemployed man sparks tensions by lusting after his mate's teenage girlfriend in this lavish Technicolor melodrama. There are some interesting dynamics at play with the buddy being successful and a near opposite of the protagonist. Cliff Robertson looks a little too old though to be playing a man dating teenagers and William Holden looks even older as the visitor. Where the film really trips up though is by placing so much focus on the Holden / Robertson / Kim Novak love triangle, when two subplots involving a spinster teacher and Novak's bookish younger sister are far more enticing. In fact, Susan Strasberg is the single best aspect of the film, playing a spunky, complex character torn between wanting independence and desiring the sense of security that comes from being a 'beauty queen' like Novak. (first viewing, DVD) ★★

Peyton Place (1957). Various scandals shake a small American town in the months leading up to World War II in this big screen treatment of a best-selling novel. The film is blessed with some solid supporting performances - in particular Mildred Dunnock's ageing schoolteacher and Arthur Kennedy's alcoholic school janitor - however the overall product is too overwrought and melodramatic to click. Franz Waxman's intrusive music is unintentionally funny, with loud crescendos as one teenager talks back to her mother and so on. Too much time is also spent on Lana Turner falling in love when the emotional crux of the film is what happens between Kennedy and Hope Lange, cast as his daughter. Had this received more focus, the film may have felt pointed rather bloated as it does, clocking in at over 2.5 hours. The moralising at the end also feels too blatant. (first viewing, DVD) ★

Horror of Dracula (1958). Or simply Dracula as it is sometimes better known, this take on Bram Stoker's classic horror story from Hammer is a very classy production, shot in lavish Technicolor and boasting genuine shocks and scares. The film begins well with lots of mystery and uncertainty as Jonathan Harker travels to the Count's mansion to document things deliberately left vague and Christopher Lee's initial entrance is great. Things become somewhat less interesting as Peter Cushing's Van Helsing soon takes focus instead, but with the novelty of highly sexualised vampirism victims here, the film remains intriguing. Renfield is sadly absent this time round, but a bigger budget and better special effects lead to this being more memorable than the Bela Lugosi version; the stop motion effects for when vampires go into sunlight are especially notable. (first viewing, online) ★★★

The Fabulous World of Jules Verne (1958). Sometimes known as A Deadly Invention, this Czech adaptation of one of Jules Verne's less famous tales (Facing the Flag) focuses on a scientist who is kidnapped and forced to build a doomsday device. The story is a bit dull as neither the villains nor the heroes are especially compelling characters, but the film comes with an amazing degree of visual flair, seamlessly combining live action and animated sequences. Furthermore, the animation comes in the style of the lithograph illustrations that accompanied Verne's first edition books. There are some nifty special effects too, ranging from two fish that merge into a butterfly to a giant claw that seems to only exist to pick pencils off the ground (!). These good ideas feel a little wasted in the second-rate story here, but the visuals on hand are really something else. (first viewing, online) ★★

H-8... (1958). Titled after a license plate number with unknown digits, this Yugoslav film takes inspiration from a real life head-on collision between a bus and a truck, caused by a reckless third vehicle that fled the scene. The opening nine minutes are breathtaking with point-of-view shots from inside the various vehicles as a narrator explains the events leading up to the crash. The final five minutes are strong too, building suspense as passengers change seats, creating mystery as to who will survive - yet the vast majority of the film is not as solid as these bookends. It has been compared to Airport, but the characters and performances are less engaging, and with a dialogue-heavy script, the filmmakers struggle to drum up any thrills or suspense in the midsection. The film begins and concludes on a strong enough note though that is certainly worth a whirl. (first viewing, online) ★★

Love Camp 7 (1969). Three army officers reminisce about a daring World War II mission in which two female agents posed as Jews to infiltrate a concentration camp in this bizarre thriller that was refused classification in multiple countries in its day. The film is not quite as shocking as reputation would have it, but it is not for the squeamish either with much sexual assault and public humiliation. As a narrative, the movie suffers from a poorly acted wrap-around segment that adds nothing to the plot, but the basic story is not half-bad with a well-developed Nazi soldier who comes to question his indoctrination while working at the camp, and a pre-Saló look at power abuse. Ilsa: She Wolf of the SS and Salon Kitty are certainly far classier takes on Nazi sexual deviancy, but this earlier affair is not as worthless as its low IMDb rating might suggest. (first viewing, online) ★

Axe (1974). Also known as Lisa, Lisa, this low budget horror film focuses on teenage girl whose farmhouse home is taken over by three violent intruders on the run from police. Described by some as a precursor to I Spit on Your Grave, the plot has her attack each of the intruders (separately) as they each try to rape her. This is less of an emotional rollercoaster than the 1978 classic though since her pain and suffering is very limited in each case before she strikes back. There is almost something of interest in how she toys with the emotions of the three intruders and tries to set them against one another, but the performances are too muted for proper effect. There are some nifty moments here (blood splattered across improperly tuned television set) but the between the ultra-low budget and second rate actors, the whole thing does not really resonate. (first viewing, online) ★

Island of Death (1976). Vacationing on a Greek island, a young couple brutally slay all of the perverts and sinners who they can find in this bizarre early career offering from Nico Mastorakis, who would later go on to write and direct the very worthwhile Blind Date and The Next One. The psychology of the protagonists are interesting as they believe that seducing everyone in sight (including goats!) is not sinful but rather the only way to test virtue, and then the pair resort to religious-themed extremes such as crucifixion to punish those they deem unfit. The film peters out a bit towards the end with a late twist that would have been better revealed earlier on, but with several extreme high and low camera angles and unsettling close-up fish eye lens shots, this is an engrossing if rather episodic film that is nicely unafraid to push the limits of good taste. (first viewing, online) ★★★

You Better Watch Out (1980). Retitled as Christmas Evil in some places, this horror movie focuses on a mentally disturbed man who becomes convinced that he is Santa Claus and tries to punish those who have been 'naughty'. The film is slow to warm up and odd at first as he obsesses over one particular 'good girl' who he spies on with binoculars. The second half is a blast though as Christmas finally arrives and he dons the red suit. There is a dark comedy vibe as he drives his van like a sleigh, has trouble squeezing down chimneys, and at the film's zaniest, there is a police lineup of Santas after he kills a heckler. The best sequence has kids gathering around to protect him from a concerned parent who cannot convince his daughter that Santa is dangerous. Topped off with a memorable ending, this is a fascinating look at the influence of the Santa myth. (first viewing, online) ★★★

The Boogey Man (1980). Childhood trauma reawakens in a young mother who unwittingly releases an evil spirit from a mirror in this odd horror film that plays out like Halloween with a supernatural twist. The basic idea is not half-bad with the shards of broken mirror glass causing those who touch them to kill themselves in a variety of creative ways (the most inventive novelty death involves a kiss that impales two teens) but the filmmakers seem unsure of where exactly their story is heading. Is it meant to be a demonic possession tale or something more like the vastly superior Oculus with the mirror influencing human behaviour? The red herrings with the protagonist's mute brother do not really fit in either. The film benefits from a tingling music score and very dark humour with some of the deaths, but this is a little too muddled to really work. (first viewing, online) ★

Inseminoid (1981). Impregnated by an alien creature while exploring a foreign planet, an astronaut goes mad and murders her colleagues in this British take on Ridley Scott's Alien. While the more economical budget shines through, the sets are surprisingly innovative. The special effects are pretty decent too with a great creature design, though we do not see many aliens - no doubt due to budget constraints. Where the film really excels though is in pushing the limits of good taste; with graphic alien sperm insemination and an equally graphic birth, it is easy to see why this was banned as a Video Nasty in its day. The film also has a grisly mutilation scene and a nicely moody synthesizer score. The acting is not the best and the characters are not well developed, but as a film about the scary unknowns of deep space, Insemnoid works surprisingly well. (first viewing, online) ★★

Nightbeast (1982). Panic grips a small town when an alien beast crash lands and goes on a killing spree in this Troma horror movie. The low budget is obvious with lots of poor outer space special effects, but the creature design is excellent and looks genuinely creepy when illuminated by electricity in the moments when they try to zap it to death. Alas, the alien is absent from significant stretches of the film as focus turns to the cops struggling to evacuate their town without creating hysteria and as focus turns to a lifeless romance set to corny music late in the piece. Even when the alien does appear, it is hard to say if there is any point to the film beyond highlighting how ill-equipped a small town might be to respond to such an odd problem. The gore does not disappoint though with some truly shocking images of innards between ripped out of victims and so on. (first viewing, online) ★

Mausoleum (1983). Possessed by a demon in childhood after entering a cursed graveyard mausoleum, a young woman suddenly embarks on a seduction and murder spree in this bizarre horror oddity. It is never explained why the demon laid dormant in her for over ten years or what started the killing spree and while there is some complex mythology at hand as her psychiatrist finds out how to stop the demon, it never really adds up and her actions ultimately feel random. The film looks absolutely divine though with glowing multicoloured neon lights inside the mausoleum and some very graphic chest erupting and impalement special effects. The demon's elusive motives also render the film fairly unpredictable with it always unclear just who she will go after next. If too flimsily scripted to really make a mark, the film is at least not a complete waste. (first viewing, online) ★

No films from the past 35 years this week. I don't know if that's ever happened before. :blink:
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#2

Post by Perception de Ambiguity » June 9th, 2019, 12:00 pm

江湖儿女/Ash Is Purest White (贾樟柯/Jia Zhangke, 2018) (theatrically) 5+/10

Stockholm (Robert Budreau, 2018) 5+/10

The Beach Bum (Harmony Korine, 2019) 6/10

Kyoto (市川崑/Kon Ichikawa, 1969) 8/10

曼陀羅 / Mandala (実相寺昭雄/Akio Jissoji, 1971) (2nd viewing) 9+/10


shorts

Rated R for Nudity (Denis Villeneuve, 2011) (2 viewings) 4/10

Migration (David Rimmer, 1969) 7/10


didn't finish

Halloween (David Gordon Green, 2018) [sum mins]


notable online media

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#3

Post by viktor-vaudevillain » June 9th, 2019, 4:00 pm

I watched these four monday/tuesday:

In Dog Years (Sophy Romvari, 2019, sh) - 7+
It's online on YT, if you're interested in old dogs and their owners relationship with them.

Gloria (John Cassavetes, 1980) - 8 theatrical
Two words: Gena Rowlands!

Manoel dans l'île des merveilles / Manuel on the Island of Wonders (Raúl Ruiz, 1984) - 9
My letterboxd blurb (rated it 4,5 there):
"I'm saving the remaining half star for the fine day when this has finally been restored, and hence don't have to watch it in a crummy recorded-from-television VHS tape-rip.
Actually the blurryness of the pictures makes for an even more dreamlike, ephemeral and otherworldly experience, though it would be lovely to actually be able to see some of the many details in the mise-en-scène and the many tones of coloring."

자유의 언덕 / Hill of Freedom (Hong Sang-Soo, 2014) - 7++

.... and then this happened yesterday, all three on glorious 35mm Grandscope at the Cinema:

The Human Condition I: No Greater Love (Masaki Kobayashi, 1959) - 9

The Human Condition II: Road to Eternity (Masaki Kobayashi, 1959) - 8+

The Human Condition III: A Soldier’s Prayer (Masaki Kobayashi, 1961) - 9+

The whole experience: 9+
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#4

Post by Onderhond » June 9th, 2019, 6:34 pm

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01. 4.0* - Kasane (2018)
Japanese body horror with strong Black Swan vibes. Kasane is intriguing genre cinema with slightly artistic influences. Smart fantasy elements bring two faulty characters together in an attempt to create one perfect human being, but it's clear from the start that neither is very happy with the situation. A fascinating film.

02. 3.5* - Polar (2019)
Fun and over-the-top action flick that does its very best to be both hard as nail as well as funny and entertaining. Everything here is a little "extra", sadly Åkerlund can't quite stretch it to last 120 minutes. It gets a little less edgy as the end draws near, which is a shame because I was getting ready for a crazy finale. Still, I like films like this, there just aren't enough of them.

03. 3.5* - Cutterhead (2018)
A ruthless, almost primordial thriller. Three people stuck in a cramped machine, deep underground, with air running out and no help on the way. Things are about to get tense and director Bro makes good use of that. The result is pretty claustrophobic and harrowing, but the film lacks a little extra finish to make it a true masterpiece. Still, very worthwhile though.

04. 3.5* - Head Count (2018)
A nifty slow burner that seems oddly hell-bent on sabotaging itself. The mystery is explained away in the very first scene with some pointless rhyme and the monster reveal is one of the worst I've seen. It's a small miracle that the film is able to overcome these fault, then again it's also a good indication that the direction is pretty damn solid.

05. 3.5* - Sleight (2016)
A nifty little and down-to-earth crime flick that is elevated by small but significant sci-fi touches. Don't go in expecting a big, futuristic spectacle, instead you get a fine crime drama with a little extra. Dillard's direction is solid, the actors do a decent job and the ending is spot on. A very pleasant surprise, looking forward to Dillard's next one.

06. 3.0* - Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017)
Amusing sequel that's a bit bolder and over-the-top compared to the original. Like most sequels though, it's also a bit more predictable. Still, all the actors are clearly having fun with their parts, the setting is daft yet interesting and Vaughn has enough directing chops to keep the film from losing steam. A pleasant diversion, everything a good blockbuster should be.

07. 3.0* - Gangster Squad (2013)
The story about a group of off the grid cops banding together to get a mafia mogul in California isn't all that special, but Fleischer brings enough flair to the table and the casting is pretty spot on. There are some solid action scenes, the atmosphere is the right mix of grim and romantic and although a little long, Gangster Squad never gets boring.

08. 3.0* - The Legend of the Stardust Brothers [Hoshikuzu Kyôdai no Densetsu]
Crazy and absurd musical comedy that doesn't score many points with its soundtrack or technical qualities, but wins you over with its completely mental absurdities. The film is pretty loud and hysterical, but from that spring a lot of insane jokes that make sure it never gets boring. You have to be able to appreciate the Japanese-ness of it all, but if you do it's a real killer.

09. 3.0* - 3x3 Eyes [Sazan Aizu] (1991)
I used to own this series on VHS, needless to say it's been a while since I last watched it. 3x3 Eyes remains a fun blend of fantasy and horror elements, but it's clear that the animation has lost a lot of its shine. The level of detail is disappointing and the animation itself is extremely low-budget. But whenever demons are allowed to go bonkers it's still a lot of fun.

10. 2.5* - Starfish (2018)
It's not that A.T. White failed to conjure up an intriguing universe, it's that he seems either reluctant or incapable to properly explore it. Instead of a solid sci-fi, horror or mystery (take your pick), we get a lot of teen angst and ill-conceived genre elements (the mid-way animation sequence being the worst offender). There's a lot of potential here, but the execution felt half-hearted.

11. 2.5* - The Rock (1996)
The rock is a decent action spectacle, though not quite the level of bayhem I prefer. There's a little too much talking going on and the camera work isn't as vital and energetic compared to his later films. It's an amusing little action film, with fun parts for Cage and Connery, it's just a little tame when putting it next to Bay's other films.

12. 2.0* - Closing Time (1996)
Kobayashi's first is a little too on the nose. With all the direct references to classic directors, this is clearly the work of a budding arthouse director who hasn't really found his own voice yet. The rhythm of Closing Time isn't too bad and there are some interesting characters that pop up, but overall it's a little too shallow to be worthwhile.

13. 2.0* - Mid90s (2018)
Clark made Kids, Van Sant made Paranoid Park. Not sure why Hill would try to make another one of those films, apart from the fact that the 90s are somewhat hot again. The film is way too specific for broader 90s nostalgia and even though the actors do a decent job, the drama is dull and lifeless. Not that good of a debut.

14. 1.5* - The Call of Cthulhu (2005)
A cute but largely ineffective attempt to create the silents of yonder. The acting isn't expressive enough, the visual fidelity is too inconsistent and the soundtrack feels a little too modern in places. It's probably nice if you're a big fan of silent (horror) cinema (which I'm not), otherwise there's really not much here.

15. 0.5* - Black Mirror: Bandersnatch (2018)
Not sure if it was the concept or the execution, but this was absolutely grating and excruciating. An endless sequence of boring and uninteresting choices, a lame framework that never grabbed my attention and a TV quality finish that was hardly flattering. If this is the template for interactive narrative entertainment, please count me out.
Last edited by Onderhond on June 10th, 2019, 10:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#5

Post by morrison-dylan-fan » June 9th, 2019, 8:32 pm

Hi all,along with the Czechflixs I'm watching for the challenge,I also saw:

Felicity (1978) 8

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Flirting across his career between Ozploitation offerings and Aussie New Wave (such as Breakfast in Paris (1982-also reviewed) flavour creations, co-writer/(with wife Diane) director John D. Lamond & Lamond's regular cinematographer Garry Wapshott fittingly have Felicity thrust between both genres/movements, via featuring a level of skin (from both sexes) which grinds to the fun frolics of Ozploitation, but is delicately captured with a smooth as silk stylisation of soft lights and dolly shots over the awakening cast across Felicity's face.Going to Hong Kong, Lamond and a cast/crew of just 12 wonderfully glide across the streets guerilla- style,in sequences of Felicity walking round historical shipping villages and the neon high streets being lit by glossy tracking shots, which dive into a sex scene on a (rented) tram,which was driven round the Hong Kong streets during filming.

Peaking at Felicity reading The Story of O a number of times, the screenplay by John and Diane Lamond smoothly fits into the high-end Erotica of the era,in going back to Felicity's innocent all-girls high school, (where they all shared showers) and shredding it layer by layer in steamy back rooms of Hong Kong, along with the awakening of Felicity's own sexual curiosity.Sprinkling a romance in for the final, the writers do very well at making it flow by keeping it light and breezy,in keeping with Felicity's relaxed attitude to exploring her sexuality. Putting on a good fake Aussie accent, Canadian Glory Annen gives a blissful turn,thanks to keeping the sexy (soft) scenes pinned on the psychological awakening of desire for Felicity.

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The Ant Bully 2006 6

Currently the last project he has written or directed, writer/director John A. Davis brings the ant bully down to size with very good,clean CGI, which shines most significantly in the realistic looking water and plants, along with the ants and other bugs being given an autumn coloured rocks appearance. Similar to the style he gave the show Jimmy Neutron,Davis make the humans (including the lead Lucas!) stand out like a sore thumb from being given a block, minimally expressive appearance at odds with the rest of the animation.

Adapting John Nickle’s picture book, the screenplay by Davis stands out from other CGI bug flicks by placing a focus on the daily routine of ants, which along with digging out comedy from the ant antics,also delivers the message of Lucas learning to respect another culture in a non-sickly sweet manner,partly thanks to the lively vocal turns of Nicolas Cage, Bruce Campbell and Julia Roberts, but also from the sweet bond gradual developed with Hova,who helps Lucas to become the anti-ant bully.

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#6

Post by joachimt » June 10th, 2019, 8:40 am

This was not a very good week filmwise. Out of 16 watches I had 7 dislikes. Part of the reason was my trial subscription on Amazon, which resulted in watching several titles from the box office list. I've seen everything I planned to see now, so I just ended the subscription.

Maudite soit la guerre AKA War Is Hell (1914, 1 official list, 37 checks) 8/10
Watched because it's an official feature less than 70 min.
Beautiful handpainted shots with very good production-values for its time.
A Cure for Wellness (2016, 0 official lists, 1455 checks) 7/10
Watched because it's on iCM Forum's Favorite Movies from 2017.
Creepy weird shit. Bit too complicated and it was dragged out a bit too long, but it kept me at the edge of my seat nonetheless.
Istoriya Asi Klyachinoy, kotoraya lyubila, da ne vyshla zamuzh (1966, 3 official lists, 143 checks) 7/10
Watched because someone shared it and it's on a list I plan to work on in the future.
Story was okay, nothing special. Beautiful outdoor black and white shots as you could expect from a Russian movie of those days.
Knight and Day (2010, 1 official list, 16460 checks) 6/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
This is scriptwriting by the book. Let's make another action-movie. First the story: let's have some object that is groundbreaking, so lots of people want it and we can have chase- and fightscenes with multiple parties. Check. Then of course some kind of secret agent is the lead character, because he needs to protect the object. Check. Which actor works well as secret agent? Of course, let's use Tom Cruise. And this secret agent is of course very good in his job, so he has safehouses everywhere, he always has an escape vehicle (car, boat, helicopter, ...) ready at all places in the world. No bullet can hit him for sure and he has the ability to escape from a room even though it is completely surrounded by SWAT. Alright, we need a woman as well. Let's get some blond bimbo into this who just happen to fall into the story and has to be dragged along. Why does the hero drag her along? Of course they fall in love at first sight. That's the only reason, because she serves no other prupose whatsoever. Okay, we need a blond bimbo...... yes, Cameron Diaz of course! Who else?! Did we think of everything? Oh right, be sure to put some plot twists in the script so the audience doubts who is the good guy and who is the bad guy. And of course
SpoilerShow
the good guy seems to be the bad guy, but appears to be the good guy after all, because we all love Tom
. I enjoyed this nonetheless......
Sepio (1996, 1 official list, 27 checks) 6/10
Watched because it's an official short.
Mildly interesting.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014, 1 official list, 13240 checks) 6/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
It's just another rather enjoyable Spidy-flick. I wish they would go further into the background story of his parents, because that felt rushed.
SpoilerShow
In the opening scene his father goes through lots of troubles to upload something to Rooseveld. Many years later Peter finds the hidden place of his father, he opens the file and all we get to see is a video of his father telling he was framed. That's it?!
The Green Hornet (2011, 1 official list, 17181 checks) 6/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
Harmless fun.
Step Brothers (2008, 2 official lists, 18126 checks) 5/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
Has it's moments and I giggled now and then, mostly because of Reilly. Can't stand Ferrell.
Visa de censure n° X (1967, 1 official list, 51 checks) 5/10
Watched because it's an official short.
Some nice overlays, but too much random hippie stuff.
Bad Teacher (2011, 1 official list, 16702 checks) 4/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
Bad movie.
Ghost Rider (2007, 1 official list, 27104 checks) 4/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
Pretty dumb.
Ghostbusters II (1989, 1 official list, 33418 checks) 4/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
Pointless sequel witt hardly any story excepts for some more ghosts that need to be hunted down.
Nuestra Señora de Paris (1982, 1 official list, 36 checks) 4/10
Watched because it's an official short.
Feels a bit like Michael Snow's La région centrale on high speed and instead of some mountain shot, be see the Notre Dame. Felt like random flashes to me. Exactly the kind of thing that makes DtC less valuable to me. Only lovers of this stuff have seen it and vote for it. When it is voted in, others are watching it and it will be voted down on a revote.
The Mummy's Curse (1944, 1 official list, 538 checks) 4/10
Watched because it's an official feature less than 70 min.
I'm fed up with slowly walking mummy's and people who seem to be incapable to outrun something terrifying that is slower than a snail.
Grown Ups 2 (2013, 1 official list, 4444 checks) 3/10
Watched because it's a random official check available on Amazon Prime.
There just aren't any normal human beings in this. Would be okay if it was funny, but it isn't.
LA Plays Itself (1972, 1 official list, 24 checks) 2/10
Watched because it's an official feature less than 70 min.
You can put layers of flowers over gay porn, but it's still gay porn. Even with flowers, I don't want to watch a hard dick inserted in an asshole.
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#7

Post by sol » June 10th, 2019, 9:59 am

PdA:

Seen none. Might watch the new Halloween for the Horror Challenge later this year, but I'm not exactly a massive fan of Carpenter's original, so no idea how this one would stack up for me.

Viktor:

I liked the first episode of Manoel more than the rest, but pretty nifty ideas either way with him conversing with different versions of himself etc.

I don't remember much of Gloria outside of thinking it inferior to Cassavetes par. Only ever seen it once on VHS though.

Onderhond:

The whole Statesman stuff seemed a silly way to me to Americanize the franchise, but I enjoyed the Kingsman sequel quite a bit too and might even rewatch it this month for the Banned Films Challenge.

I hated The Rock at the time (15+ years ago) but all that I recall of it off-hand is a lot of mindless violence.

m-d-f:

Seen neither, but always interesting to hear as about your erotica viewings each week; 3rd aside, you're probably our resident expert.

I noticed that you also watched one of the films I posted about this week (The Fabulous World of Jules Verne). Sounds like you viewed it under the less "senseless-marketing" title. I spent the first fifteen minutes thinking that it was the weird writer biopic that I had ever seen!

joachimt:

Love A Cure for Wellness. Great mood and atmosphere and probably the closest that any contemporary film has come to The Ninth Configuration.

Yes, Knight and Day is very enjoyable. I liked it a lot when I saw theatrically and rewatch a couple of years later confirmed its worth in my mind. It is also the only film that I can think of in which close-ups are used to emphasise Tom Cruise's grey hairs (I recall a running theme with the character's ages, not as young as they once were, etc).

Yes, Sepio is pretty interesting with its sole female character who does everything possible to avoid her face being seen on screen. Step Brothers was stupid. Same for Bad Teacher, but I found that one funnier. No strong opinion on Ghostbusters II, but I definitely liked it less than the first.
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#8

Post by morrison-dylan-fan » June 10th, 2019, 10:35 am

sol wrote:
June 10th, 2019, 9:59 am
PdA:

Seen none. Might watch the new Halloween for the Horror Challenge later this year, but I'm not exactly a massive fan of Carpenter's original, so no idea how this one would stack up for me.

Viktor:

I liked the first episode of Manoel more than the rest, but pretty nifty ideas either way with him conversing with different versions of himself etc.

I don't remember much of Gloria outside of thinking it inferior to Cassavetes par. Only ever seen it once on VHS though.

Onderhond:

The whole Statesman stuff seemed a silly way to me to Americanize the franchise, but I enjoyed the Kingsman sequel quite a bit too and might even rewatch it this month for the Banned Films Challenge.

I hated The Rock at the time (15+ years ago) but all that I recall of it off-hand is a lot of mindless violence.

m-d-f:

Seen neither, but always interesting to hear as about your erotica viewings each week; 3rd aside, you're probably our resident expert.

I noticed that you also watched one of the films I posted about this week (The Fabulous World of Jules Verne). Sounds like you viewed it under the less "senseless-marketing" title. I spent the first fifteen minutes thinking that it was the weird writer biopic that I had ever seen!

joachimt:

Love A Cure for Wellness. Great mood and atmosphere and probably the closest that any contemporary film has come to The Ninth Configuration.

Yes, Knight and Day is very enjoyable. I liked it a lot when I saw theatrically and rewatch a couple of years later confirmed its worth in my mind. It is also the only film that I can think of in which close-ups are used to emphasise Tom Cruise's grey hairs (I recall a running theme with the character's ages, not as young as they once were, etc).

Yes, Sepio is pretty interesting with its sole female character who does everything possible to avoid her face being seen on screen. Step Brothers was stupid. Same for Bad Teacher, but I found that one funnier. No strong opinion on Ghostbusters II, but I definitely liked it less than the first.
Thanks Sol, being ICM's expert on smut, (I mean "Erotica") is a badge I'll happily wear! :lol: Your review reminds me that I really need to check out H-8 (have heard about it for years.)

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#9

Post by peeptoad » June 10th, 2019, 1:06 pm

Hi-ho, sol! My time is getting shorter these days (grrrr......), but I have a few moments now though I don't have access to what I saw last week and no mental energy to try to recollect it right now (i.e. I'll post my views later, or maybe in next week's thread).
Horror of Dracula (1958) is on my list. I someday hope to have watched every Hammer film made, but that day isn't here yet.

seen of yours-
Axe (1974) 7 loved the lo-fi quality of this one and some of the weirdness of it all. I guess I liked it a lot more than you since you only gave it a 1. B)
Island of Death (1976) 6 is what I have this one rated. I'm having trouble recalling details other than the goat. Must have been under the influence of something when I saw this (it was several years ago). :whistling:
You Better Watch Out (1980) 7 enjoyed this one too.. is this a Troma release? (I can't recall- if it is it's one of the better ones imo). I liked the sort of downbeat, depressing vibe to it.
The Boogey Man (1980) 5 not very good, but better than the sequels
Inseminoid (1981) 4 also kind of "meh"... not one of Warren's best. Prey 77 is far better imho...
Mausoleum (1983) 5 or so. this film I saw about 15 years ago, but it's has some of the exact qualities of the type of films I used to rent form the video store back in the 1980s (well, duh, it's an 80s film ha ha, but that's not quite what I mean). It has a very early 80s feel to it for my experience of that decade. Blood Song, which was on the same disc I think was the better part of the double feature.
Onderhond wrote:
June 9th, 2019, 6:34 pm

01. 4.0* - Kasane (2018)
Japanese body horror with strong Black Swan vibes. Kasane is intriguing genre cinema with slightly artistic influences. Smart fantasy elements bring two faulty characters together in an attempt to create one perfect human being, but it's clear from the start that neither is very happy with the situation. A fascinating film.
This sounds fantastic (I enjoyed Black Swan... and loved Repulsion even more). Added to the proverbial list. :thumbsup:

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#10

Post by viktor-vaudevillain » June 10th, 2019, 1:50 pm

@Sol:
Macao - interested.
The Boogeyman - I may have seen some of this in my preteens... Or maybe I just saw it as a preview on another horror VHS?

@PdA:
Ash Is Purest White - 9 - this really worked wonders for me, though in hindsight my appreciation of it have vanished a bit. Let's see how it holds up on a rewatch.

The Beach Bum - looking forward! I've seen the trailer numerous times.

曼陀羅 / Mandala - really looking forward to this. It's in my up next-pile.

@Onderhond:
seen none...

@m-d-f:
seen none...

@Onderhond:
Knight and Day - 4
A Cure For Wellness - interested
Istoriya Asi Klyachinoy, kotoraya lyubila, da ne vyshla zamuzh - interested
War Is Hell - interested
not everything is fish, but fish are teeming everywhere

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#11

Post by sol » June 10th, 2019, 2:11 pm

peeptoad wrote:
June 10th, 2019, 1:06 pm
seen of yours-
Axe (1974) 7 loved the lo-fi quality of this one and some of the weirdness of it all. I guess I liked it a lot more than you since you only gave it a 1. B)
Island of Death (1976) 6 is what I have this one rated. I'm having trouble recalling details other than the goat. Must have been under the influence of something when I saw this (it was several years ago). :whistling:
You Better Watch Out (1980) 7 enjoyed this one too.. is this a Troma release? (I can't recall- if it is it's one of the better ones imo). I liked the sort of downbeat, depressing vibe to it.
The Boogey Man (1980) 5 not very good, but better than the sequels
Inseminoid (1981) 4 also kind of "meh"... not one of Warren's best. Prey 77 is far better imho...
Mausoleum (1983) 5 or so. this film I saw about 15 years ago, but it's has some of the exact qualities of the type of films I used to rent form the video store back in the 1980s (well, duh, it's an 80s film ha ha, but that's not quite what I mean). It has a very early 80s feel to it for my experience of that decade. Blood Song, which was on the same disc I think was the better part of the double feature.
Oh, cool - this banned film challenge is leading to you seeing more of my stuff than usual. :D

Actually, I voted Axe a 5/10 on IMDb, but in my simple four star rating system here, anything from 1/10 to 5/10 ends up as one star - which makes sense to me since it groups together all the films that did little or nothing for me. Axe is one of the films that did "little" for me more than "nothing". I liked the idea of her playing the three intruders off one another, but it only really amounts to her convincing the two remaining criminals that the other one killed the first one who she killed. Not a whole lot of of psychological manipulation, but a sliver for sure. I also didn't quite feel enough for her pain and suffering. I guess the comparisons to I Spit on Your Grave didn't help going into Axe, but I expected to feel more livid and outraged, yet all the rape scenes were brief nowhere near as graphic as the characters' later deaths.

I don't think You Better Watch Out is a Troma release, but that one and Island of Death were certainly my favourite first time viewings from last week. I still can't get over how demented the Christmas themed one is. It's sort of like a much more competent version of Silent Night, Deadly Night Part II with a much kookier sense of humour. I don't know if I would describe the film as depressing though. I think the fantastical ending is meant to be uplifting?? Oh, and the goat is certainly the most memorable part of Island of Death, but the whole thing was so WTF NSFW and envelope pushing that I couldn't help but love it. I wish the religious zealousness thing was more prominent, but like You Better Watch Out, it has the similar notion of an antagonist who is deluded into believing that he has the god-given right to punish evil-doers.

Not seen Prey or any of The Boogey Man sequels, but I thought you would have liked Inseminoid more with its glorious tributes (rips-off?) to Alien. Not seen Blood Song either, and I watched Mausoleum online, so I don't know if it is available to me. But yeah, Mausoleum also reminds me of the horror films that I rented as a kid in the 1990s and early 2000s, back when VHS was still king.
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#12

Post by MovieSchmuck » June 10th, 2019, 2:16 pm

Harlan County USA (1976). One of the great working-class documentaries of course, needs no introduction. But so hard to watch now because you know what's happened since to all workers rights in America.

Signpost to Murder (1964). Strange little British B movie. Stuart Whitman is the (possibly) insane killer who busts out of the looney bin & Joanne Woodward the woman he takes hostage in her isolated house. He insists he's sane & innocent, she turns out to have her own issues, and the police & various civilians keep dropping in & making things difficult. It's all been done before of course, but Whitman and Woodward are both terrific. The 87 minute running time means all the plot twists and character development zoom along so fast it gets almost surreal. (And a WTF cameo by Alan Napier, the butler on the old Batman TV show).

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#13

Post by peeptoad » June 10th, 2019, 4:01 pm

sol wrote:
June 10th, 2019, 2:11 pm
I thought you would have liked Inseminoid more with its glorious tributes (rips-off?) to Alien.
So did I actually, esp since it came on the heels of having seen Prey. Maybe I saw it too close to that (preferred) viewing. :shrug:
Your rating of 1 for Axe seems more appropriate (given your opinion, that is ;)) now that you explained your rating system more.

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