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Film What's the Last Film You Saw? v. Tell Us What You Thought!

Cream Gravy?

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Gosh my list of unreviewed films is like 14 now... I'll try and get started today, finally feeling rested after a long week. Also wanted to knock out The Neon Demon too. I have a bit of a thing for Elle Fanning even if she put on some weight in 2020 ;)
 
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Cream Gravy?

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Alright, got 14 movies to review... gonna start with the ones I don't recall as well and work forward each day.




Ordinary People (1980)

This film encapsulated my high school 'tragedy' sooooooo well. It hit me on so many levels.

In essence, it was about a family who had lost their eldest son in a boating accident. The younger son, being the survivor, blames himself for the death of his brother and as such we see him at the beginning of the film having recently returned home from a long stay at an in-patient hospital for having cut his wrists (down the river, ain't no attention seeking here...) and nearly bleeding to death.

We see his parents try to interact with him. Their life should be peachy keen, they're rich as can be, the father (played excellently by Donald Sutherland) is a businessman or lawyer of some type and makes big bucks. The mother is the unaffectionate type... we see this play out till a sort of shocking end to her roll in the family. She's always trying to pretend her son isn't depressed, ignore his suicide attempt, while his dad is trying to understand his grieving son and grieve himself.

The wife is ashamed of their son seeing a psychologist (of course, it's 1980) and denies it to people, while the husband desperately tries to understand and help his son, realizing just how much his other son's death truly impacted him as well.

I don't wana give away too much of the plot. Watching this 2 hour family tragedy is worth doing is all I'll say. As someone from a less affluent but still very socially strict family who tried to off himself at 16... I really, really identified with this film. My wife said to me, "Oh wow, so the whole movie is just based off your high school years huh?" Gave me a chuckle... in a sad, yet good way.

I think any parent dealing with a depressed child should give this movie a watch. The film won 4 Oscars, and they were all well deserved. Can't recommend this one enough!

8.5/10




American Honey (2016)

Not much to this film (yet a 2hr53min run time!) and yet it was so powerful. A group of impoverished teenagers travel from city to city in the U.S. trying to con rich folks into buying magazine subscriptions (and yes, it's contemporary, people in the film laugh at the concept of magazines). Led by a bitch of a woman (played by Riley Keough) who lords over the group, and her lackey played by a very charismatic Shia LeBeouf, they expose to us the collapse of the American dream. The lead actor Sasha Lane does an amazing job portraying the struggles that white Southern impoverished youth face (poverty in America isn't racial... slaves are needed no matter their skin color. The slaves at your small-town Walmart are white, have you noticed?) and the film is so gripping that you just can't look away, despite the runtime!

No contemporary film has helped me to realize just how far we've fallen in America, how sad our lives truly are here; yes, the kids have their fun, they travel, they sing along to crappy rap music to pump themselves up... but in the end, the music always stops, and we see them having that 'thousand yard stare' as they blankly look out the window at run down small towns throughout the South and Midwest.

In my experience, no other film has EVER captured youth poverty so fucking well. Most of the 'actors' were just kids the director approached on the street and interviewed on the spot, giving the film a truly realistic and gritty feel. Even Sasha Lane as the lead lol... when she was approached on the beach in Panama City by the casting crew, she tried to walk away with her friend because they thought they were being scouted for porn. That says it all right there I feel.

Amazing film. Depressing, gritty, true to life. A bit long winded though, so by the end you feel the message is being pounded into your face a biiiit too much. But by then, you're nearly done with the film, and by gosh does this message need to be seen and heard. The Zoomers are being left behind, and well... America doesn't care.

7.7/10
 
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Cream Gravy?

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The Neon Demon (2016)

This N.W.R. film was... something lol. Drive was a classic, but the screenplay was written by someone else. Here we see Winding-Refn in his true, self-indulgent form; the technicolor beauty of this film cannot be denied, and yet it's only skin-deep (no pun intended).

Elle Fanning was only 16 years old when they shot this film, so unfortunately(?) the nudity was rather limited. There are a few scenes where we get a pretty good look at Fanning in her panties (sorry y'all, I'm a perv). Anyways, she really showed some amazing acting chops in this one. Despite N.W.R.'s terrible screenplay, we see Fanning truly hit her stride. To be frank all the acting was good, from her to Keanu Reeves. But the plot... the screenplay... bleh!

This was a gorgeously shot film with a fantastic soundtrack full of good actors. BUT, it was not a good film. I had my wife watch it a second time with me to confirm my feelings about it, and both of us turned to each other and said, "I feel like I was just visually raped." I think that about sums it up lol.

If you're cool with gorey, outré type stories, this'll tickle your fancy. If on the other hand you're repulsed by say, necrophilia... steer clear.


5/10 (because it did spur me to watch it twice)
 

Burnt Offerings

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^ Yeah that movie was lame. I liked some of his other movies like, as you said, "Drive", even "Only God Forgives" (which, admittedly, was slow as hell and definitely self-indulgent but had some good elements I thought). I also liked NWR's "Pusher" trilogy, which is done is a quite different style than his later films...more realistic and gritty, less stylized...but I didn't like "The Neon Demon" at all. I only watched about half of it, turned it off and never finished it
 

birdup.snaildown

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Bloodthirsty (2020)

Following the tradition of taking classic horror tropes in different directions, Bloodthirsty mixes lycanthropes with the indie music scene. It's a weird beast. The twist near the end didn't do much for me. The transformation scene pales in comparison to 1981's American Werewolf in London. The cast is a bit of a mixed bag. I was looking forward to seeing Michael Ironside, but he only makes a cameo appearance... Overall, Bloodthirsty was a pretty forgettable experience but decent enough to keep me watching until the end.

2/5
 
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birdup.snaildown

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mal3volent said:
Fiddlesticks. This is what I was expecting but in the back of my mind I was trying to convince myself to overcome my cynicism and give it a chance. I don't know if I'll be able to. The last thing I want to do is watch a bunch of hollywod elites appropriate my culture if it's clear they didn't put in the effort to truly understand it.

YMMV.

It's probably worth watching for Glenn Close's performance. It depends on how much an Oscar queen you are, I guess. I'm always curious about nominated performances. In this case, she deserves the nom more than the Borat girl. Can't say if she deserved to win. I haven't seen Winners or The Father yet. The latter is definitely on my short list, but not just because of the quality of the cast. I also have a serious thing for Olivia Colman. If I had to pick top my top two celebrity crushes, it'd be her and Mary Steenburgen (circa 1993).

I realize I have unusual taste, but - if anyone happens to be interested - Colman did a nudist film with Robert Webb (the idiot from Peep Show). Throughout the entire history of cinema, there are few scenes from movies that I can substitute for pornography. Steenburgen seducing a young Johnny Depp in What's Eating Gilbert Grape also does the trick for whatever reason. I'd rather not think about why too much.

I went off on a bit of a tangent there.

Elegy isn't a bad film. Don't not watch it based on my opinion. I liked Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull and I hated There Will Be Blood, so what the fuck do I know?

I suggest you give it a go.

NSFW:
 

Snafu of the Forest

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If you're a fan of horrible B Movies and lovable bad movies this is a jackpot. Rates 2.9 on IMDB.

This movie is so hilariously bad and the fact that it stars Bruce Willis makes it infinitely more hilarious.

It has a decent budget and production and takes itself seriously which makes it even more funny.

The acting, characters, dialogue, effects and death scenes are SOOOOO bad I was laughing like a little kid watching family guy.

Definitely worth a watch.

I'd give it 8.5/10 in entertainment value. I loved it.

They probably spent 95% of the budget just to hire Willis and that makes it worth watching alone.
 

Cream Gravy?

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I didn't like "The Neon Demon" at all. I only watched about half of it, turned it off and never finished it
The first half is the only worthwhile footage anyhow. I'd say by around 60 minutes in, turn off the film. You've got your answers by then lol.

I liked Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull and I hated There Will Be Blood, so what the fuck do I know?
Woah. I don't even know how to comprehend those words :ROFLMAO: :rolleyes: different strokes for different folks!
 
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Cream Gravy?

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Lost in Translation (2003)

This film was great, yet the very definition of melancholy I felt (yeah, fuck you Lars von Trier). Two strangers played by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansen keep crossing paths, as they spend a lonely few weeks in Tokyo, their respective spouses far away or busy.

We watch as their romance blooms, slowly, shyly. Never pushy. In fact they barely even kiss towards the end... and yet you cry, you cry for all that was lost that could have been. In the end, the amazing soundtrack, compliments of Air and a few other contemporary bands at the time, really gives you the feels. You want so badly for Murray and Johansen to embrace and love one another... yet in the end, they can't.

This film was Sofia Coppola in her best form. Here I thought she couldn't top The Virgin Suicides... yet here we are, with an even better film, full of amazing character development yet very little dialogue.

Some say she stands on the shoulders of her father; well, financially, most likely. Yet her films are very unique from her father's films. This is no Francis Ford Coppola film, this is truly his daughter's own work.

An amazing, melancholic film with a fantastic soundtrack. I really enjoyed it despite crying my eyes out at the end.

Lost in Translation... such an apt name for this film.

8.5/10



The Rainbow (1989)

Ken Russell was at the directing helm of this D.H. Lawrence adaptation, with some help from his wife on adapting the screenplay. In typical Russell fashion, this film is sumptuous to look at, yet for once he packed a heck of a lot more substance into it. This is like 50% of the usual Russell style we see in his other 80s films.

In essence, it's a coming of age film about a young woman in Ireland... but not for those too young ;) lots of nudity, lesbianism, the works. Definitely an adult film. Anyways, it was very easy to relate to the main character played amazingly by Sami Davis. The runtime is a bit long, but still worth the watch, most especially if you're trying to kill a slow Sunday morning or just want something visually exciting to take up the end of an acid trip.

Not a film for everyone, but a great coming of age flick if that's your thing.

6.8/10
 
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Burnt Offerings

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Nah, not familiar with that one. What's it about?

It's a Ken Russell film. Pretty crazy, over-the-top movie...from what I remember (saw it long ago) it kind of brings together wild psychosexual themes together with political intrigue set in the late middle ages/early modern state period. Stars Oliver Reed, of Hammer film fame (but who most movie audiences probably know from the film "Gladiator").

Check it out, it's good!

 

ghostfreak

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Very surprised how well this indie horror was done, suspenseful throughout with hardly any dialogue but kept you on the edge of your seat for the entire film. Will be interesting to see what the director does next in the horror/thriller genre.

4/5

As always there’s films and reviews I forget to post here so check out my Letterboxd profile as I log everything there 😊
 

Cream Gravy?

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Gonna shoot off some reviews for films I either don't recall as well or didn't enjoy quite so much:


Spotlight (2015)

This was an amazingly depressing movie truth be told. I grew up Catholic. I never wanted to think that the Church would turn a blind eye the way it has in the past...

If this film wasn't a complete fictionalization of the whole priest-pedophilia fiasco that has been going on for centuries, well... it still convinced me to turn away from the Church. I already had, but this seals the deal. The Catholic Church, the Pope, they are not conduits or messengers of God anymore. Maybe they once were. I still have great respect for Pope John Paul II... nonetheless, these egregious crimes have been permitted in various fashions in perpetuity. Until we all stand up and say, "No more," to organized religions, these things will continue to happen; holy wars, pedophilia, coverups, the works.

Give this film a watch if you need your Catholic faith shook up. It'll get you good.

Amazingly executed, with great pacing, fantastic acting, the whole nine-yards. Worth a watch even if you already hate the Church. Deserved its Oscar wins for sure.

8/10


Cool Hand Luke (1967)

This was a boring ass film with a fantastic troop of a shit ton of would-be 70s-90s actors such as Dennis Hopper and Harry Dean Stanton. We don't see much of them... oh well.

The lead (Paul Newman) does a very meh job of portraying an anarchistic war hero who goes to prison for drunkenly sawing the tops off a bunch of parking meters. He winds up spending lots of time on a chain gang on a good ol' Southern style work farm from the early 20th century. In this respect, the film is mildly interesting; 20th century penology is fascinating. It was a more effective, brutal, and natural time of punishment. Anyhow...

Luke doesn't like prison (he's an anarchist essentially if you recall) and makes a fuss about it a lot. Him and the Warden quarrel. I can't even recall the end to this film to tell you the truth, it was just that darn dull.

This was/is a highly regarded film by many. I'd love for them to show me why. The Oscar for best supporting actor was deserved (George Kennedy) but the Academy Awards have always been a joke anyhow...

"What we've got here is a failure to communicate." Damned straight, I don't really know what was communicated to me here. This film did not age well at all.

4/10


Moonrise Kingdom (2012)

Another Wes Anderson flick. Can't go wrong. I don't recall much of this one (was probably pretty doped up during viewing) but all the classic actors were there. It was a classic W. Anderson film; quirky, quick editing, witty word play, etc.

As they sum up on IMDb:
A pair of young lovers flee their New England town, which causes a local search party to fan out to find them.

That's about it. The young lovers happen to barely be preteens as well, adding to the quirkiness. Hilarity ensues of course.

I'll try and give this one another watch sometime to give it a fair shake, but I'm more attached to his earlier The Darjeeling Limited lately and have rewatched it instead a few times (great flick btw).

7/10
 
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Burnt Offerings

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I didn't much care for "Cool Hand Luke" either. It's strange because usually I'm a sucker for "individual vs. institution"-type stories, but that one just didn't grab me.
 

Cream Gravy?

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It's strange because usually I'm a sucker for "individual vs. institution"-type stories, but that one just didn't grab me.
Same here. Not sure why it became such a 'classic'. Another example of how 'classics' are subjective. Roger Ebert loved the movie. The man also had horribly bad taste in films. Yet he's the most famous film critic of all time... life never stops baffling me.
 

Cream Gravy?

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Dredd (2012)

I'm not one for comic book stuff but I immensely enjoyed this version of Dredd starring Karl Urban. This film was aesthetically like a Gaspar Noe or N.W.R. film, but with a way more entertaining plot than they seem to average.

I thought it funny that the reason the 'Judges' are around is to crack down on drug-use related crime; they don't seem to care about any other crimes but drug use and murder related to it... perhaps commentary on American policing? Who knows.

Great sci-fi though. Over the top visuals and gore, yet you don't feel sickened. Wife and I watched it and felt none of the sickness we felt while watching The Neon Demon. Really enjoyable action sequences and great pacing. No real substance here though, just pure movie watching pleasure.

Might add it to my shelf someday.

7.8/10


The Founder (2016)

Michael Keaton did an amazing job in this film (as did Nick Offerman as one of the McDonald brothers, hats off) as the man who stole MacD's and turned it into the money-grubbing machine it is today. Obviously the man revolutionized fast food... but at what cost?

There's a particular bit at the end where Keaton really, really shows his acting chops through a slowly changing facial expression. I very much enjoyed his acting throughout, it was gripping and real. American is the word I'd use. He really captured the American entrepreneur perfectly.

If you enjoy dramas about real life events, this one might be up your alley. I don't like to eat at MacD's but I enjoyed the heck out of this film truth be told.

7.5/10
 

Max Power

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Cool Hand Luke (1967)
4/10
Wow. Granted I haven't seen this film in a few years but I remember enjoying it, Newman's performance in particular. Overrated? Possibly, but I am surprised by your rating. Maybe I should revisit. Not that I'm inferring this is relevant to the rating, but, would you agree there are parallels between this one and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, specifically from the angle of the protagonists? Just some food for thought.




I signed up for Criticker. I'm enjoying the site. I haven't had a chance to try out any of the recommendations because I have my own queue to work through first, but it's been mostly accurate in some of its predictions for movies I've already seen.

I think I'll post my full reviews on there and do quick quips here:

Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance (1982) by Godfrey Reggio
I'm a sucker for well-synced audiovisual and this film has it in spades. Oh, and Philip Glass. Love the way it tickles my synesthesia. 4.5/5

Defending Your Life (1991) by Albert Brooks
Written, directed, and starring Albert Brooks. And Meryl Streep. Soul did this story better. This one felt cookie cutter and . . . sterile. 2.75/5

WALL·E (2009 ) by Andrew Stanton
Finally watched this one, expectations were high. Expectations were not met. Still a cute movie with a lot of fucking heart and solid laughs tho. 4.25/5

The Shawshank Redemption (1994) by Frank Darabont
According to IMDB, this is the best film of all time but it honestly felt like a Lifetime movie. A fantastic Lifetime movie, but a Lifetime movie nonetheless. Missing a certain pizzazz to really be one of the all-time greats. 4.25/5

Busanhaeng AKA Train to Busan (2016) by Sang-ho Yeon
South Korean zombie flick. Some of the best sfx I've seen, specifically with the 'horde'. Not much takes place outside of the train to Busan, so the title is fairly spot on lol. 3.75/5

Trois couleurs: Bleu AKA Three Colors: Blue (1993) by Krzysztof Kieslowski
First in the Colors Trilogy. Another highly rated film that just didn't deliver. This film just felt too pretentious, ultimately. 2.75/5

The Kid Detective (2020) by Evan Morgan
Reminded me of a 2000s CBS sitcom, not necessarily in a good or bad way. It had enough humor to keep me entertained as to not feel like a complete waste of time. 3.75/5

(500) Days of Summer (2009) by Marc Webb
Wow, I really liked this one. The non-linear plot, the acting, the directing. Pixies and Bergman references abound. Plus Zooey is probably my dream girl. This film just resonated with me. 4.5/5

Kes (1969) by Ken Loach
Some nice, English-countryside cinematography. Always enjoy a 'every day slice of life' film, when its well done. A UK 400 Blows. This film has a bit more heart tho. 4.25/5

Repulsion (1965) by Roman Polanski
"A woman's descent into madness". It's been done before, no? I could see film schools having a field day with this one. Shout out Chico Hamilton and Gabor Szabo for the jazzy soundtrack. 3.5/5
 
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