The Movie Thread
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main character deserves a best supporting actress Oscar. My problem with the film is that it is but another portrayal of poor black people living in a ghetto who are drug addicts, pushers and prostitutes. I imagine this exists in the U.S, but I'm kind of tired of seeing this in the films as pretty much the only representation of Black people. I recently saw Straight outta Compton and even though it is based on a true story,once again we are shown violent, drug-filled,gross black people. It is just too much for me. And the depiction of the gay element of the film is also a little strange.
But still it is moving and very well produced and shot and the score is lovely and haunting.
incorrect, but that was the sense I got from the preview.
Maybe I'll watch Down with Love tonight. It's silly, but never fails to put a smile on my face.
I really want to see the Arrival -- hopefully tomorrow.
Another streaming service that is interesting is Fandor. They have a half-price sale on right now so an annual membership is quite reasonable. They focus on independent and international films and documentaries. I haven't joined because I already have more streaming services that I can keep up with.
Interesting,just read that this year people are cutting the cable cord in droves-it's a massive reduction in subscribers now.
Yeah, let that sink in for a second.
Anyway we don't get to watch movies outside of our collection very much (my husband and I that is) and so on a recent flight we watched The Infiltrator with Bryan Cranston. It was great. I hadn't heard of it, what with the no internet, and incidentally, no TV either, but we only had to see his picture to know we wanted to watch it. It's set in the 1980s and Cranston plays an undercover agent for the US Customs. He's trying to find a way to take down the Escobar drug cartel by posing as a guy who launders money. Based on a real story so far as it goes. Tremendous.
There are movies out there right now with black characters who aren't poor -- the Madea Halloween one, and another one, Almost Christmas, are both in theaters right now. Just a few weeks ago, we had Southside With You, about the Obama first date; it was great and no one went.
I had a good run last week thanks to our local indie house -- The Handmaiden, the restored Battle of Algiers, Moonlight, and the absolutely lovely Certain Women, directed by Kelly Reichardt, who maintains her perfect record. I think she's my favorite living director now. All that plus Arrival -- which I really did like....well, it only took five movies for me to not want to die after the events of last week.
I think I'm signing up for Filmstruck this week, since Criterion's deal with Hulu is over because they're in cahoots with TCM. I've read that the TCM content on Filmstruck won't perfectly reflect their cable library, but there's hope that'll broaden out as time progresses, if they figure out people will pay for it.
Movie based on an unfinished Baldwin book.
Dr. Strange, in 3D in an iMax theater, gave me vertigo. It really felt like the world was tipping and sliding. I agree with >8 mkunruh: the cape was the best character. If you go see it, definitely try to catch the 3D version. It certainly adds a lot to the experience!
Arrival was quite satisfying - an alien contact movie of ideas rather than mayhem (trying hard to avoid spoilers here). 'Course, the main thrust of the movie being about the Whorfian hypothesis was pure pleasure for me - I worked as a linguist for many years and Language, Thought and Reality is one of my favorites.
Fantastic Beasts was enjoyable, but seeing it with a couple of Harry Potter fanatics made it an event! Eddie Redmayne does an absolutely hilarious mating dance and the bar scene is better than the one in Star Wars!
I wonder if I have any money left for next week?
On the other hand, Michael Shannon is fantastic.
Oh, and DG, McCabe and Mrs Miller is coming back in a week or two - the theater's tribute to Leonard Cohen. Let me know if you want to go. I saw it last year and I know you did too but I'm game for a second viewing.
Nocturnal Animals is planned for Monday afternoon.
I'll let you know about MMM.
Angela Lansbury is only 21 in this movie. She always looks much older than her actual age--she was only 19 or so in Gaslight. I think she was only 34 when she was in Murder, She Wrote.
I've been watching Westworld, and I keep mentally putting THG in that world, so now I'm waiting for Judy Garland to gun down everyone in the street and then wake up naked in a laboratory to talk to Anthony Hopkins.
I will say, though, that I had a verrrrrry vivid memory of it from childhood and when I went with my family to the Grand Canyon, we ate at some restaurant that was a Harvey outpost at some point and I was very shocked that waitresses were not running around with giant platters of three-inch steaks. There was a salad bar, for Garland's sake!
Angela Lansbury was BORN twenty years older than everyone else.
I have been considering going to a movie theater soon, but mostly because I am craving popcorn. I just rented some dumb stuff over Thanksgiving, nothing to write home about (Bad Moms, Sausage Party, Ghostbusters, and Finding Dory).
We saw Arrival this week. I really enjoyed it (linguistics! protagonist a woman! (although it certainly didn't pass the Bechtel test) large octopus! misty scenery!) but my 16-year-old was less than impressed by the camera work, the predictable storyline (up till the middle where it begin to shift), and the over earnest soundtrack. He gave it a 6.5/10. He did say that it really suffered in comparison to Moonlight. I, couldn't argue, but still enjoyed watching Amy Adams hyperventilate and talk about language for almost 2 hours. Next week is the Manchester movie (or whenever it comes out) and the 16-year-old is very anxious to see LaLa Land. I must say it is really fun to have someone eager to see movies who also wants to talk about them after.
It's cast to the nth degree -- everyone gets a good scene...Michael Sheen, Jena Malone.....Laura Linney gets the best one -- but it's funny, it's only the best scene because she MAKES it the best scene. You spend the next thirty minutes hoping she'll show back up.
It's a movie I kind of hated watching because it's so manipulative but I think about it a lot. Better in retrospect, perhaps.
also, during that first night-time scene, I don't think I exhaled. I haven't been that uncomfortable during a movie in I don't know how long.
Yes, it was Deliverance for about ten minutes.
I would probably be raving about Shannon more if Jeff Bridges hadn't just had almost the same part in Hell or High Water.
That being said - I think I posted about my friend's son who died last summer. Haven't been able to really cry. But the topic of the movie itself and its maudlin music, had me in tears by the end, thinking of Peter and my friend. So I guess it was good for something. I needed to do that.
Glad it had a cathartic effect for you, at least!
But I can't mention the movie because that gets spoilery. You all have a week! Then I'm blabbing.
Definitely don't wait to watch it at home. It's a movie theater movie if there ever was one.
That said, I enjoyed Storks. I have yet to see Trolls or Moana.
Adding my voice to the Michelle Williams controversy: she has like twelve lines! Matthew Broderick is in it as much as she is! It's not big enough for a supporting actress nomination, sorry. Though she's very good.
My audience laughed when Broderick appeared. Totaly idiotic to put him in the movie.
Williams is going to end up competing against Viola Davis who is really a lead performance. It's like a kitten and a tractor are in a fight.
Good grit, though. The original Cantina looked five star by comparison.
I watched 'Hell or High Water' and I am not sure it warrants all the 'one of the best of the year' hype. I get the story. I thought it was an okay film, but I'm not sure why everyone thinks it is so great. Any insight out there?
But I can't mention the movie because that gets spoilery. You all have a week! Then I'm blabbing."
Were you talking about La La Land? I saw it last night. It's been close to a week, I'm just saying.
I liked it a lot but I got fooled a bunch of times near the end thinking the credits were about to roll. I was also sitting next to one of those people who keep pointing out every little inaccuracy, like "they have the traffic headed the same direction on the 101." The fact this person was my husband didn't help.
I think once you give in and suspend disbelief and allow people to sing and DANCE IN THE AIR AMONG THE STARS, you don't get to hold them to Rand McNally geographic accuracy.
My mom had us watch something called The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill, which was a documentary and made me cry.
This pretty much sums up the division of taste in my family. But it is kind of awesome that dad always sits through mom's picks with equanimity, and she always sits through his with the same genial forbearance. And thus I'm always especially interested in the movies and shows that they both like, because it seems so unlikely that there would be any.
The kid - Lucas Hedges- was really good.
I do think there should be a ban on the use of Albioni's Adagio in G Minor in all films for the next century. Please, no more.
We saw Fences yesterday. It was better than I expected and Denzel is very very lucky that he had Viola Davis, although she is so good that I think she skews the storyline a bit away from the relationship with the sons, making the play much more about the marriage.
It's interesting to me that two of the actresses who will get nominated for Best Supporting had scenes where they cried so hard that snot came out of their noses.
I also saw "Rogue One" with my son, who grew up playing with model AT-ATs, me constantly tripping over a huge Millennium Falcon, and he carrying a Boba Fett figurine in his pocket wherever he went. I thought it was just okay. A nice afternoon with my son. He loved it.
I love Jeff Bridges, but I couldn't really root for him either. He was a sad, lonely character who cares for his partner, but shows in the only, inappropriate, way he knows how. It was awkward. But, perhaps that is why it is so good. Not sure.
'I loved Rogue One'!
I couldn't get past that whole 'jazz is dead and it's up the white guy to bring it back' especially in LA which is so rich in jazz of all kinds. Then I felt bad because I know the movie is about dreams and here I was dragging it down, asking it to be realistic. But I felt embarrassed for it as a movie.
I love Emma Stone though. I could look at her face forever.
BUT, if you are going to make a decision about what his journey is - and again, I agree, it's more about the club than his career, then why make it something so loaded? Anyone saying that they want to 'save jazz' when it doesn't need saving sounds like a dum-dum but a white guy saying it just sounds pitiful. And then those scenes in the club where he's playing and she's bopping around and all the African American folks are looking at them with approval - I was literally cringing in my seat.
Like The Impossible, it's got a lot riding on the ending and how they play it and it's pretty well-done; it earns the swelling music.
*the explanation of the title, though, is a good ta-da moment
It's still a charming movie, and I would watch a video of Emma Stone googling the White Pages.
"and I would watch a video of Emma Stone googling the White Pages."
I forgot to mention -- "Lion" features what has to be a 20-minute sequence of Dev Patel clicking around Google Earth. It's not the movie's finest moment.
I had fewer problems with La La Land than most of you. I didn't think of Gosling's character as trying to save jazz, but of trying to be a contributing part to exposing people so they learn to love it...six of one, half dozen of the other? He wanted people to love what he loved. And I had no problem with them hanging out and dancing in the club. That does happen, you know. I've been to jazz clubs and no one kicked me out for being white, even though I was almost the only one there and I wasn't trying to dance like I was in a Bjork video. Ha. However, I will agree that neither one of them is a good singer or dancer. I was hoping I was the only one who really noticed it. If you don't know much about dance, I think you may not see it. But to me, clearly they'd both taken dance classes at one point in their lives (most actors do, right?), but they weren't great.
I really want to go see Lion. Almost did yesterday, but a medical emergency at work had me dealing with paramedics and stuff (not me, an employee). And Moonlight is also at the top of my list, but it's playing like ONE theater. ARGH.
Yeah yeah I know .. I used "make art" in a sentence. That's like someone talking about the great recipes in the Betty Crocker Cookbook. Well FU, meatloaf can be art, too.
>99 JulieCarter: I didn't think of Gosling's character as trying to save jazz, but of trying to be a contributing part to exposing people so they learn to love it...six of one, half dozen of the other? He wanted people to love what he loved.
Interesting, thats how I see it as well. However I know others are more attuned to this, I get that. Maybe some can school me on this ?
BTW is the trailer for Boss Baby the worst ever? I can't imagine watching that movie.
Anyway. I also think if I was at all interested in "faith" I probably wouldn't have been fidgety, but every single minute of its almost three hour length is about this subject, so you're either in or out in like the first five second.
It's better than the deadly preview would suggest, but it's not top-tier. But also, who the fuck am I to talk crap about Scorsese?
There are two fun things: the majority of it is set in prohibition-era Tampa, so the setting doesn't look like the usual generic-looking big-city backlot brownstone sets and then also Anthony Michael Hall pops up in one scene and its fun playing "wait a minute, I know him from somewhere..."
Affleck manages to look both bloated and cadaverous at the same time.
>104 Pat_D: Pat, you should go and report back; I think it was a hard movie for me to embrace because it is ALL JESUS ALL THE TIME
Filming has completed for the movie adaptation, directed by Andrew Haigh. Interesting cast:
Ragnar = Ray (Charley's dad)
Charlie Plummer = Charlie
Steve Buscemi = Del
Chloe Sevigny = Bonnie
Steve Zahn in an unnamed role.
In the right hands, this could be sooooo good (fingers crossed).
The movie version of The Motel Life was an admirable effort, but ultimately disappointing. In fairness, that book probably wouldn't transfer to the screen well, no matter who tried. It has to be read to get the full effect.
It's most interesting attribute is how it fits in with Beginners -- Mike Mills' other movie portrait of his parental figures -- both movies are a little, hmmm, sketched, but they add up to a really good self-portrait of Mills himself. It seems like that would be navel-gazing-y, and maybe it is, but it's such a complete portrait that you're just happy to see such a thing.
There are a couple of snazzy directory things I could have done without (he speeds footage up occasionally, and it's a complete mystery as to why. Did it really take too long for Elle Fanning to climb down that scaffolding?), but then you get lots of scenes of people reading books, so it all balances out.
But I don't know, I think my days of being interested in yet another exploration of how unknowable women ciphers variously confuse, inspire, or sexually frustrate/initiate a boy into manhood were over a long, long, long time ago.
Heaven is definitely the more essential, but Obsession is a deeply weird movie.
Wyman has been the star of the month on TCM -- every Thursday....and hilariously uneven.
MO is so, so weird. And it has probably one of the most annoying child actresses on earth in it--approaching Little Mary in The Women levels.
I spend half of my life mooning over Heaven, but there's really nothing else like it. I watch it probably once a week.
Then you should watch Fassbinder's Ali: Fear Eats the Soul which borrows the plot - in this case, a older German woman falls in love with a Moroccan man.
This makes me sound like a kitten strangler, but I thought Hidden Figures was kind of a bore. The actual story is quite interesting, but the movie spends so much time making the three main characters into saints that any complexity they might have had as real people gets ironed right out. I think the worst thing any of them does is steal a library book and even that's for the Greater Good. I dunno; it just seemed like one of those old Hallmark movies, the ones they used to make that felt like BIG EVENTS but were still just TV movies. I'm sure they saved a lot of money filming Taraji running across the parking lot FIVE HUNDRED TIMES to go to the bathroom. I did spend a lot of time looking at the details in Taraji's house, though, and I'll take those two Blenko vases on the sideboard.
Despite anyone's personal feelings about the character, Joseph Gordon-Levitt turned in another excellent performance. It's such a beautifully subtle depiction that I don't know if anyone else noticed it, but he even changes the sound of his voice to more mimic the real Snowden. I think he might be one of his generation's most underrated actors. Ever since 50/50, I've made a point of keeping an eye out for his non-fratboy films. I wish he'd get more challenging roles.
Aside from "Hell or High Water," I haven't seen any of the 2017 nom's. I am eagerly awaiting "Hacksaw Ridge," rental availability because I saw a documentary about that main character, and I think it's an amazing story... how a pacifist managed to serve his country in combat. I don't expect much from Eastwood, I'm just very interested in the story.
I just broke my never explain a joke rule!
But as for their selection of theatre movies ... I don't know the business decisions behind how they get rights to stream movies, but I'm always intrigued when movies that are 40, 50, 60+ years old show up. For the most part, I'll always choose to watch an old movie than some comic book movie.
Anyway, for this month at least they are showing The Third Man. I don't even have to watch the whole thing but I like watching any part of it. Joseph Cotton was never a very good actor but he's perfect here. And all the odd camera angles. And the odd-looking European actors. And nothing but zither music on the soundtrack! And the big reveal!! (What's the statute of limitations on spoiler alerts?)
Anyway, if you have Netflix and haven't seen The Third Man, go watch it.
And I loved it that the whole audience practically screamed when he hit her; people were really invested in it.
My favorite late Mason pleasure is The Last of Sheila.
As an antidote to my football withdrawals, yesterday was a double bill. I watched both "Hacksaw Ridge" and "Manchester by the Sea." I scrolled back to check others' comments and saw:
alans: "Michelle Williams is on for barely ten minutes and her big scene is excellent,Casey Affleck is very moving,but the film felt so small."
I'm not sure what you meant by this, Alan. Did you mean lo-fi (as in budget), or mundane, or too specific? Honest question.
DG_Strong: "I made it to Manchester by the Sea today -- I admired it quite a bit, but everything is held at such a remove (except for a couple of times when it isn't) that it's kind of hard to love."
I didn't feel that, at all. It's one of the many things Lonergan gets so right- that Yankee stoicism that can easily be mistaken for flat affect (except when sports are involved). I spent most of my childhood growing up in a town almost exactly like that one, only in CT, and I can't think of another movie that was so on-the-nose with that trait. New Englanders are like walking/talking paradoxes. They're so damn possessive of their tragedy and guilt, yet their kindness and compassion and sense of community knows no bounds. They share nothing and everything of themselves.
I think it's the best movie I've seen all year, and I was prepared for a bit of a let-down after all the buzz. I still can't shake it (can you tell?). Like it's center stage in my frontal lobe, or something, or like when I experience a very affecting read that stays with me for days. Actually, it did feel like I was watching a novel.
laurenbufferd: "That part of the country is one I know very well and he sure got it right in every way. "
Snap. Couldn't agree more, Lauren.
"The kid - Lucas Hedges- was really good."
One of the first things I did after the movie ended was to pick up my phone and check whether he'd been nominated. I know he's very young, but that truly is an award worthy performance.
I've always hated those "make up for our f**k up" awards, so it's really strange for me to get on board with Michelle Williams' nomination for so little screen time. But every short scene she is in is exceptionally demanding skill wise and crucial to the plot. Especially that scene where Lee and Randi run into each other on the street corner after she's had her baby. I mean that not just because it's so packed with a plethora of her emotions: self-recrimination, pity, an epiphany of compassion, concern... and love (the way she says those three short words, "I love you," is absolute perfection, and I think it broke my heart almost as much as it did Lee's). It's an extremely important scene, because up until that moment, Lee is very conflicted about what to do with Patrick. So much so, he even starts job hunting in town. But then Lee runs into Randi, she tells him everything he's probably not consciously longed to hear for years, he falls back into his pattern of self-flagellating bar fights, and finally knows he can't stay there. It's a short scene in minutes but it's a huge scene for resolution. Willaims manages to pack in an awful lot in that scene without overdoing it.
Based on the limited amount of this year's nominated actors I've seen, I think Affleck should be a no-brainer. I could specify any of a number of scenes as evidence, but he should get the Oscar for the immediate aftermath of the tragedy alone. I've seen a lot of real life people in shock, and his portrayal of stunned grief and instant self-crucifixion is phenomenal. Then it segues into that incredibly amazing scene at the police station, and I'm not referring to the violent part. The way he delivers his version of events is absolute perfection when it so easily could have felt like so much exposition.
I also thought Lonergan's pacing was genius. For instance, he doesn't visually tell us the whole story of that night when the camera follows Lee home from the store. We find out just like the police do, and it's so much more effective that way.
Also, the movie is very close to being timeless in that I highly doubt it will ever feel dated in years to come. Just like Affleck, I thought the screenplay was sublime, and I wasn't surprised to read that Lonergen worked on it for three years.
I also like the odd screenwriting credit -- "Anthony Perkins and Stephen Sondheim" ... if I was a movie producer I would sign up odd couples to write movies screenplays.
Lady Gaga and Franklin Graham
Lin-Manuel Miranda and Vince Gallagher
Lena Dunham and Robert Towne
I'd criticize everything that was wrong with the flick, except I honestly felt that book was unfilmable from the moment I heard they were going to try. Nicest thing I can say about the movie is they cast the main character perfectly.
I thought the book was excellent, though.
Ang Lee is funny -- when he's on, he's ON -- and when he's not....well, hello Lust, Caution.
Then there's "Ride With the Devil" which I bought because I loved it so much.
But he's puzzling -- like John Huston or William Wyler, he makes a lot of completely different types of movies and it can be hard to pin down exactly what themes he's interested in. It might just take more movies before we see the thread. His next project is the Thrilla in Manilla one.
The thread I've noticed is that all of his stellar films, IMO, are the ones with screenplays written by established writers (Woodrell, Austen/Emma Thompson, Wang Dulu, Prouix) that come with a strong sense of cinema already built-in. Ben Fountain (Billy Lynn author), wrote a truly great book, but it was not one that would translate to the screen well, since so much of it is dependent on its structure via the written word. I also think he seems to do better with period pieces.
I think Lee has a thing for challenges; I know everyone on earth thought Life of Pi was unfilmable, so he said, eh, we'll see. I wasn't super-keen on it (I really dislike the book), but I thought it was pretty inarguable that he had indeed made a good movie out of the material.
And, having just looked at his list of movies, you can focus mainly on his movies from 1948 and earlier and 1975 and later.
I didn't either! I saw it in the theatre, I think. There were a couple of surprise. Incredible story.
2015 - "Spotlight" -- really really good movie; heratbreaking in spots. I'ts streaming, but I don;t feel compelled to watch it again.
2014 - "Birdman" -- fun inventive movie that I have watched a half-dozen times already and would watch again
2013 - "12 Years a Slave" -- didn't see it
2012 - "Argo" -- fun trailer, entertaining movie, no strong desire to see again
2011 - "The Artist" -- i was entertained but have no desire to see again
2010 - "The King's Speech" -- preachy period piece ... no desire to see again
2009 - "The Hurt Locker" -- saw it ... good tension as I remember but have no desire to see it again
2008 - "Slumdog Millionaire" -- inventive, kinetic, both depressing and exhilarating. Have seen it a half dozen times and would see it again. Best closing credits EVER
2007 - "No Country for Old Men" -- compelling and depressing. I watch Fargo whenever I get the chance but have not felt the desire to watch this again.
2006 - "The Departed" -- boy I'll sound film-snobby but I prefer the Hong Kong original Infernal affairs. also features one of the worst Jack Nicholson performances
2005 - "Crash" -- want to feel depressed about humans? here's the movie for you. no desire to see again
2004 - "Million Dollar Baby" -- I really loved this movie when it came out, but have no desire to see it again
2003 - "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" -- ugh ugh ugh ... this is the only of the series that I saw and I hated it. The longest most boring mountain climb EVAH.
2002 - "Chicago" -- didn't see it; have seen the stage show a couple of times and like the music.
2001 - "A Beautiful Mind" -- never saw it
2000 - "Gladiator" -- never saw it
My favorite movies rarely win these big awards, just as my favorite tv shows hardly ever get recognized by The Emmys (I still can't come to terms that The Wire never even received a nomination), so they hold very little credibility with me. I don't watch it live, so I can fast forward through the commercials and really awful parts, but it's hard to completely avoid the spectacle.
I only saw La La Land, Manchester by the Sea, and Arrival (and one of the animated movies, I think). I've been wanting to see Moonlight, but it's never at a convenient time by my work, and it's in like 3 theaters in the entire area. Hopefully it will open at some new theaters now. I looked at the theater closest to my house on Saturday, and they are only showing shit movies. I mean, like that one with James Franco? Trash. I can't even remember what they were, because they are all monumentally unappealing. Anyway, with Manchester by the Sea, I had heard a lot about Casey Affleck (including the ick-factor news) and Michelle Williams. I waited for her few scenes to blow me away, and she doesn't until that one near the end. THAT scene is why she got nominated, and it was a great, great scene. But you can't really compete with Viola, can you?
However, there are a TON of big, blockbuster type movies coming up, which many of you may not care for. But I'm all in for Wonder Woman an Guardians of the Galaxy 2. There are a few more like that coming, and I'm more likely to go see some of those in the XD theaters or 3D theaters. The rest will just have to wait for me to rent them at Redbox or wait for cable. Grrr.
Cindy asked: Are you not a fan of musicals? Or was it something else all together?
I think it was something else altogether. I can't say I don't like musicals, but I only like them when the music (and the dancing) is something that is special, fresh, new--or at least contributes to the story in a way that is enlightening, or at least informative. I wasn't at all moved by the music, although a lot of it was pretty.
I never felt the love between these two characters. They were young and nimble together, but that was about it. Who the hell were they? Los Angeles is full of these vapid youngsters, bless their hearts. Even at the end of the movie they had barely reached the beginning of their lives. And the Ryan Gosling character--please--big jazz savior?
Maybe the movie was just bad timing. It seemed like a light-hearted, dancing musical would be just the thing to escape us from the now world. But it didn't do that for me. I felt especially sensitive to the fraud of it and the exclusiveness of it. I felt like this was the movie that the new order would vote for.
the Nazi period whose son gets killed in the war, and the father starts writing and anonymously dropping off postcards denouncing Hitler as a fraud and a liar. The way the film depicts the complicity of ordinary Germans and the difficulty in fighting the regime from within the country was just fascinating. I'm not usually a huge Emma Thompson fan but her performance as a very troubled German frau was wonderful. If you find it somewhere...watch it. It's a shame it never got released apart from New York.Sorry the movie is called Alone in Berlin. Her husband is played by
a very famous British actor but I can't recall his name. He too is exceptional. The story is based on a true story.
Last night I finished watching Jackie and I swear had I had to sit through that in the theatre I would have shot myself in the head. What a dreadful bore-just on and on about Jackie's thoughts and
inanities. I know the woman was going through a lot, but it is just so painful and boring to watch. And Natalie Portman's accent drove me around the bend. I thought Jackie was supposed to be
an intelligent woman? She sounds like a twerp in this and that little girl whisper is unbearable. Surprisingly Billy Crudup has a huge part in the film and he is totally unrecognizable. How he has
aged! But the movie is just this tedious bore, why anyone thought it was a great movie is beyond me. here is Jackie in Lincoln's bedroom, and here is Jackie in this state room....oh it was dreadful.
At the end of the film (no spoilers)John Hurt appears as this super self-righteous priest and I just wanted to throw up. He goes on and on about what Christ said and thought and I'm so tired
of the clergy assuming they know what Christ said and thought. The whole damn thing put me in a lousy mood.
I also watched a dreadful/fun (because it was so scary) movie with Naomi Watt who is very very beautiful. She plays this mother who is taking care of her paralyzed son and all sorts of spooky
things start to happen. The film is called Shut In. The plot twists are inane but I love being terrified so it was fun for that. Little Jacob Tremblay from Room was also in it.
Finally I watched Patriot Day-the movie about the Boston Marathon bombing. I really wasn't expecting much but I found the story so fascinating-especially the way the police and the FBI do
the investigation and find the brothers. A very sad film...Place a bomb in the middle of a crowd where a three year old was blown up is sick beyond belief, but I found the telling of the story to
be very respectful and there were a lot of details I didn't know about. Boston Proud!!
lame and silly.
I watched What Ever Happened to Baby Jane for the first time on saturday. What a joy,what a treat, what a wild adventure! I'm so glad I finally got to see it. I wanted to see it in order to prepare for The Feud. But when I looked at a clip from The Feud, the actresses look absolutely nothing like Bette Davis or Joan Crawford. Of course who would want to look like Davis in Baby
Jane,but there seemed to be absolutely no resemblance at all. Maybe this is the new normal,
you don't have to appear to look like the person you are playing as long as you act well.
whole cast was great.
I dunno. It wasn't horrible, but nowhere near as good as the book. It just barely touches upon the illusion of religion theme that was so profoundly realized in the book, and, IMO, except for Liam Neeson, it was terribly miscast.
Such a blown opportunity.
EDIT: And I thought the animation (as were the book's illustrations) was stunning.
I also think Anne Hathaway does something brilliant after years of being accused of not being likable -- in this, she plays someone kind of not likable and you end up loving her through the whole thing. Clever girl.
The Twilight guy gives the best performance, but everyone's good, even the dreaded Sienna Miller, movie killer, who seems to be channeling Jacqueline Bisset as she ages.
There are some second-rate tries at Garcia Marquez territory (a fully staged opera in the jungle, a fortune teller in a foxhole) and I don't care if they were true, they made me roll my eyes like crazy.
But it's good, it's a good afternoon at the movies.
Later this weekend: Their Finest and My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea.
Sofia Coppola's version of The Beguiled with Nicole Kidman, Colin Farrell, Elle Fanning, and Kirsten Dunst will be appearing at the Cannes Film Festival, and I've been reading a lot of buzz about it which claims it's going to be the indie hit of the summer. I remember watching the terrible Clint Eastwood and Geraldine Page version many years ago, but I did not know it was based on a Southern Gothic novel (A Painted Devil by Thomas Cullinan). One article I read said the 1966 novel has been out of print for 30 yrs., and it will be reissued as a movie tie-in.
The trailer looks much more like a movie based on a Southern Gothic novel than the Eastwood version:
Another selection for Cannes is Todd Haynes' adaptation of the YA novel Wonderstruck (another book by Brian Selznick who wrote The Invention Of Hugo Cabret), starring Julianne Moore and Michelle Williams and an unprecedented number of deaf actors/actresses. This is another Amazon production.
I'm really excited about the Coppola movie. I plan on reading the book asap.
I saw Their Finest yesterday -- it has the worst title in quite some time -- and it's a very Readerville movie; I sort of jokingly said it was a cross between Call the Midwife and Argo, but that's actually kind of true. It's about an effort to make a British propaganda movie during WW2 right before America jumps into the war (that figures prominently), and all the making-the-movie stuff is really interesting -- you see how they would shoot scenes on a beach with matte paintings or whatever and there's some spectacular footage of the movie that they make (they talk about Technicolor a lot but you don't see the actual Technicolor bits until the end and it's just thrilling, they get it exactly right).
There's a love story, blah blah blah, but you won't care about that part at all.
Another interesting thing is that there's an artist character in the movie -- a painter -- and for ONCE in a movie, the paintings are really good. I wanted all of them.
Anyway, it'll be streaming in about ten seconds, but if you can see it big, do, because the little movie bits pay off in a way that they might not on a TV screen with you on your phone and the dog barking to go out.
And I agree, the love story is the most forgettable bit.
Best use of typewriters since His Girl Friday.
also watched 20th C. Women now that it's on demand. The acting is superb and even the tweeness of the style didn't bother me but I think at 56, I am permanently over the mysterious sad girlfriend who will have sex with everyone but you. Maybe all straight guys have one. But i'm just not interested in that story.
Greta Gerwig though!!! I love her.
Eww, the trailer for Beguiled was dreadful! You can enoy it Deeg, Im staying home!
The more I read about the Emily Dickinson movie, the more excited I get.
Last week I watched Citizen Kane and the first half of Lawerence of Arabia because my 16-year-old continues to be into charging through the movie canon. The LoA print was crappy, too dark, and it is a shame to watch it on a TV screen, but both boys were entranced with Peter O'Toole as Lawerence. And Citizen Kane was significantly shorter than I remembered! But so much fun watching the framing shots, and the shadows, and doorways/windows.
Next, apparently is Bicycle Thieves which I've never seen (because I'm a weeny) and Vertigo. Both recommended (referenced?) by Scorcese during his Jefferson Lecture (I think). His tastes are very influenced the his boy-ness (Scorcese, Tarintino, Cohen Brothers) but I'm pleased to see him respond critically/thoughtfully to everything he watches.
It was just a whole lot of that kind of stuff. I've been indoctrinated by the feminazis, obvs. (HAHAHA.)
I did laugh at some of the gags, but it was not a movie I need to see again. There are better Sandler movies out there, believe it or not!
The new Noah Baumbach movie, for example, The Meyerowitz Stories. Though it also features Ben Stiller, and that's almost a deal-killer for me, those two single in anything...much less together. Luckily there's also Emma Thompson, who offsets a Sandler, a Stiller and maybe even the mumps.
It never came to the theaters, so we watched it through Amazon prime. At first we were ambivalent about it, but a few days later realized that we were thinking about different scenes in the movie. So we watched it again. And now we bought the DVD.
Very interesting movie, one you need to see more than once to get all the nuances from it.
Adam Driver has very interesting looks. Sometimes he looks downright ugly, other times he looks impossibly handsome. How is that?
That Greta is the real deal.
On a different topic, The Family Stone is one of my favourite Christmas Family movies, and one of the few movies I'll watch repeatedly. Are their the movies like this that I could try? I love the family dynamic 'thing.'
Also, Greenberg, which has Ben Stiller, so: sorry about that. But also Jennifer Jason Leigh!
There's an absolutely thrilling sequence right in the middle and a music thing accompanies it that is so exciting I almost came out of my chair -- it involves something I had no idea I remembered and then suddenly I knew what it was and girrrrrrl, i queened out big time.
All the acting is terrible but you won't care.
Last weekend I watched Let It Fall: LA 1982-1992, which is pretty good. It details events leading up to the trial, highlighting difficult relations between blacks and Korean shop owners, in particular the shooting of a teenage girl at a cash register. It didn't cover new (to me) ground, but it brought together a variety of people living in LA at the time. It reminded me what an ugly piece of work Darryl Gates was.
Next, Rodney King, a one-man show filmed by Spike Lee.
But this time I was focused on little things, like how good that cat is in the opening scene and how fake Talia Shire's preggo belly is when she's getting walloped and how terrible the grandchild in the tomato patch is and how the actress playing Apolonia is certainly no Helen Mirren, either in the acting or the boobs departments. There's a lot to look at in all the backgrounds, so that was fun. I never noticed that you can see Moe Green's crack during his deadly massage before. Well this time I did, and it was BIG SCREEN SIZE.
I hate to say it because I know how much you love her but Diane Keaton is so generic and she has just about zero chemistry with Pacino which is weird because I'm pretty sure they were involved at the time.
Lauren, I watched it with my boys as well (or at least one, the other struggles with lots of emotion on the screen, so begged off). It holds up brilliantly.
I do think it stacks the deck a little -- there's quite a bit of voiceover Dickinson poetry and the final one is both obvious and impossibly moving and I just challenge you to not be a little shaken by that bit. There's also a little movie-magic trick in the first twenty minutes or so that is so fantastic I almost squealed.
It's not perfect - there's a casting error in the first half that takes a bit of time to shake off -- but the two sisters, Cynthia Nixon and Jennifer Ehle are both so great that it all works out fine.
Easily top of my list so far this year.
It is a touch underbaked -- five more minutes in the oven and one more revision and it could have been a truly savage class warfare social comedy. Somehow the end manages to have it both ways (it would be a super-size spoiler to say how). It's also a touch over-cast: two people from Transparent, John Lithgow, Chloe Sevigny, Connie Britton -- a couple of them have nothing at all to do except be horrible rich whiteys. At the center of it all, though, is a truly nervy, unsettling Salma Hayek, about whom I have never given a single thought before. But she's fantastic here -- even though sometimes it looks like she's never worn pants before; she seems uncomfortable in them.
I'll recommend it, but it's a little chickenshit ultimately.
But other than that, I really liked it. Rock Hudson had those giant fake teeth like so many stars did back then, that look like dentures a la Clark Gable. And he didn't do a ton of acting in this, but somehow seemed sweet. Maybe a little boring and simple, but sweet. I hope they had years of amazing sex and cozy nights by the fireplace, not watching tv.
But my favorite part is this exchange between the daughter and Jane Wyman. There's something so throwaway and matter-of-fact about Wyman's last line that really sells it, especially compared to how whispery and pent-up she is in the rest of the movie. Sort of like she's just absent-mindedly agreeing with her daughter and not really listening, but she is, she IS. She's so deadpan and resigned, it makes me laugh every time I see it.
Kay Scott: Personally, I never subscribed to that old Egyptian custom. At least I think it was Egypt.
Cary Scott: What Egyptian custom?
Kay Scott: Of walling up the widow alive in the funeral chamber of her dead husband along with all of his other possessions. The theory being that she was his possession too so she was supposed to journey into death with him. And the community saw to it that she did. Course that doesn't happen anymore.
Cary Scott: Doesn't it? Well, perhaps not in Egypt.
There's no score at all, nothing but insects buzzing and nature sounds and that sort of thing until the very last scene, and it's such an interesting choice to add music right at the tail end.
There are only like ten lines of dialogue -- and I'll be interested to see how people react to the three different timelines that are three different lengths. Do see it in an IMAX format if you get the chance; it was mostly shot on film and it shows, especially that big.
There's also a funny bit of casting that had me thinking for a brief moment that Agent Peggy Carter might show up. She doesn't, but it would have been awesome.
I'll probably wait for the hype to fade and get to The Beguiled when rentable.
I saw where the Chaos Walking trilogy by Patrick Ness is being adapted... starring Tom Holland (jeez that kid is in everything, lately) and Mads Mikkelssen with a screenplay by Charlie Kaufman. I credit that series with sparking my interest in YA books.
The book-to-movie event I'm most eager for is Lean on Pete. I loved that book.
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I particularly enjoyed the first ninety seconds of Ingrid, though. THANKS FOR INVITING ME, YOU CUNT! I'm gong to say that at every party this season.
The brother was a bit of a mis-step to me but I get who he was and what he represented.
I do think the film captures the deep materialism of instagram and pinterest and the way that mostly women fall prey to that kind of curating life.
There was an article not to long ago in the NYer about a couple whose instagram posts of life in their VW van was being subsidized by corporate sponsors.
Tonight, I am seeing It with my younger son who loves scary movie. I don't. I hope I survive.
Katie Holmes is in it for about five minutes and she has that second-marriage-redneck-girl-who-looks-like-beef-jerky look down. And Channing Tatum, of all people, gets the accent just right; none of the cast matches each other accent-wise (Adam Driver's is particularly peculiar) but Tatum's actually sounds like a cross between my W Va dad and NC mom and those are the two states the plot occurs in, so his at least sounds specific.
Michelle Pfeiffer steals the show even though almost every frame of the movie has Jennifer Lawrence in it (she's fine, in an impossible part; you'll know why when you see it). Pfeiffer could get more roles like this and I'd be happy, but I think the only other ones like it are all Baby Jane types. So.
I have no idea if I am recommending it or not, it's just so deeply not similar to anything else out there right now.
The movie is interesting -- you really do get into it, even though it's not a very complicated story. It's also kind of puzzling, though -- there's really hardly any reason to be set it on an Indian reservation outside of maybe one scene involving jurisdictional authority. But maybe that's progress? That a movie can be set on a reservation and we don't have to see all the cliched scenes we always do (other than trailer meth)? There's also something faintly ridiculous that DOESN'T happen but you kind of think it's going to the whole time and then when it doesn't, you're both relieved and disappointed. IT INVOLVES CATS.
It's the Sicario/Hell or High Water writer guy -- this is my least favorite of the three but he is batting a thousand so far.
One thing I was pleasantly surprised by was the lack of a romantic relationship. I was really hoping that was not going to happen, and smiled when it didn't
Thank god for TCM
Anyway, since PBS was a major funder I expect it'll be broadcast as a three-part series one of these days. I didn't mind the length that much, though when I got up I said, "That was like a flight to Chicago." But I do highly recommend it.
It was interesting too because even though I work for a teeeny tiny museum, we have similar problems to the National Gallery - just on a much smaller scale. I suppose that will be true for other libraries and the NYPL and librarians will notice that.
It's probably not a complete success, but it's craaazy entertaining (especially the second half, though it takes its time getting there) and the cast is just stupid loaded: Stone, Carrell, Bill Pullman, Elisabeth Shue, the absolutely GREAT Andrea Riseborough...even Alan Cumming tries to steal a few scenes, though he can't manage it because Sarah Silverman walks off with the whole movie. Every time she shows up, the thing just spins off into outer space. That's probably a drawback; her tone is so different than everyone else's. But you really do just want to watch HER movie.
Saw Battle of the Sexes, and think Carrell is brillant as Riggs (and is having way too much fun doing so) and liked Stone as King. I remember the time period and the big ta do it all was at the time - and wonder if all the over the top bits that shocked us then would make much of an impression on young viewers now. I also didn't remember that Riggs beat Court. Liked it tho saddened me that while we have come a long way, some backpeddaling has happened that is most unsettling.
But I loved the rest of it.
But I don't know how anyone else would find it all that interesting.
Says the woman who saw maybe 5 movies total, one of which was The Emoji Movie. Rotten Tomatoes gave that one 6 stars which was 5 too many. I had to take my 5 and 7 year old nephews who spent half the movie yelling out, “Who’s the bad guy? Is that the bad guy? Are there two bad guys? What the....” That last one always got me nervous but they never said anything after “the.”
It takes place after a terrorist bombing in London.
Brenda Blethyn plays Elizabeth, whose husband died during the Falklands War and left her to raise their daughter on a small farm, with occasional help from Elizabeth's brother. She's feeling especially overworked and lonely after her daughter goes off to college in London. She calls to check on her daughter after watching scenes of the bombing aftermath on TV. After several days gone by with no word from her daughter, Elizabeth leaves her Guernsey farm in her brother's hands, takes a boat to England, and begins a heartbreaking search for her daughter. Not all of the victims have been ID'd, there have been recent sightings of her daughter in the company of a "dark-skinned" man, and she's found evidence that someone else has been staying with her daughter in her flat.
Sotigui Kouyate plays Ousmane, an African expat living in France and working as a forester for many years. He receives a phone call from his estranged wife in Africa who is frantic. She's not been able to contact their son, a London University student, since the bombing. Despite not seeing his son since he was six years old, he gives his word to the woman he abandoned years ago that he will find their son. He walks through the French countryside and somehow finds crossing to England. The police aren't much help, he's running out of money, so he visits a local Mosque and enlists some kindly help there.
Long story short, Elizabeth and Ousmane are brought together during their searches, discover their children are a couple, and both begin to suspect the worst. Did they die in the bombings? Did Ousmane's son radicalize Elizabeth's daughter? Were their children complicit in the bombings? After a very rocky start (Elizabeth is both afraid and suspicious of Ousmane and even has him arrested at one point), this unlikely couple jointly begin wrenching visits to morgues, hospitals, police headquarters, and neighborhoods.
More than a mystery, this is an incredibly moving story about prejudices, similarities, and connections. The two main performances are unforgettable in their slowly evolving friendship.
If you're a Prime customer, don't miss this movie. It's a real gem.
How can you not love a movie where a child improvises the line "if I had a pet alligator, I would name her Ann"?
David's still around; I see him on other fora/comment sections occasionally (he predated even Readerville, going all the way back to Table Talk at Salon before migrating over to Rville). I enjoyed his prickliness but wasn't really on the sharp end of it ever. In fact, he backed me up once on yet ANOTHER forum when I fact-checked Mistuh Rex Reed himself and RR was snippy about it.
My 17 year-old is all agog with the Spacey news, partly because he thought Spacey was cool and is sad that he's had to adjust that opinion, but mainly because Redditers are pulling of clips from a variety of sources (including Family Guy) that show that this was a well known industry "secret."
Lately the thought of Hollywood and the movies is making me feel really nauseous. I started watching this doc on TCM about this famous production coupl and I had to turn it off. Perhaps..I guess.. they never knew how sleazy the industry was,but I just can’t give into the myth anymore. Of course I’m not young and have heard the rumours about all kinds of grossness all my life,but lately it is just too much to handle. I feel really sick about all of the people who have suffered and continue to suffer. Perhaps I am naive,I have worked for the same institution all of my adult life,and no one pats women on the rear end or forces kisses on them,as far as I know and in my work place I would just know,it’s just all so sick.
Did not care for David Ehrenstein. I never really recall interacting with him myself, because I saw him as such a whiny, knee-jerk, melodramatic dick. I'm sure he'd accuse me of homophobia for that, because that's what he did to everyone else. And I agree with Nancy, he is a major misogynist.
As far as the Kevin Spacey (and everyone else) stuff, I guess I'm just crazy cynical, because I am not surprised or shocked by any of the allegations out there. I'm not going to say much more, because I have a feeling my thoughts will be taken the wrong way.
Cindy-I was thinking about you this past weekend. I remember you mentioning on several occasions that your father used to run a deli in Phoenix. This is just fascinating for me. Anyways I saw an incredible documentary
on the history of delis in North American on the weekend called Deli Man. It features interviews with people who
run delis all over the U.S. and talks about the history of the deli. In the 1930s there were over 2,000 delis in the New York area, today there are about 150 delis in the entire United States. It's a wonderful documentary, some real characters in it and the food looks amazing. Feyvush Finkl is in it and he's great as is Jerry Stiller.
Sorry to move off topic but I wanted to bring this to Cindy's attention. I'm a huge deli fan.
And it was deli-catered with corned beef sandwiches and and sour pickles and black and white cookies and kugel and, oh, so much other stuff. It was a good movie and it made me laugh so much because they'd show these big glistening closeups of like schmaltz dripping off a spoon and the room full of 200 65-year-old Jewish people would start moaning like crazy.
Heh never heard of deli man before, . Yeah after my dad passed, my brother took over the deli and had it for another 40 years. The mall that its in is closing so he decided it was time for his place to close as well. Big article in the paper about it, mentioning that it was one of the last real delis in the valley. I wonder if he knows about that show. My sis and I will go down there on his last day, get a last pastrami, and help my brother celebrate - tho since we all worked in daddy's deli, I think its going to be bittersweet that it is closing.
Thanks for thinking of me btw!
whatever happened to chicago jewish delis
Three Kings 1999....Swingers 1996 and The Lincoln Lawyer 2011.
But that said, it's still kind of fun to watch it unfold, especially with movie stars in almost every part. It's almost perverse -- the Oscar winners (Cruz, Dench) get literally three lines each, while the best actress in the bunch (Olivia Colman) gets to play her big scene entirely in German. Branagh himself is less twinkly than Finney, but not as dry as Suchet in the Poirot department. He's fine -- and I have to say, even with the fascinating mustache, he looks FANTASTIC, like back to the OG handsome Kenneth Branagh, so much so that I was looking closely to see if they were computer enhancing his face a little to smooth him out (I think they were) and he gives himself just these incredible blue-eyed closeups against white snowy mountains. It's SO MOVIE STAR.
It also looks great, lots of sweeping train shots, the engine chugging through landscapes thrillingly. And one single completely contrived shot almost at the end is so old-time movie great that it almost makes you un-remember that quite a lot that preceded it is a bore.
*except A Midwinter's Tale, which is perfect and underrated
Oh and I agree with you about him in Shakespeare, tho Much Ado About Nothing will always be my fav of his.
I was talking about having all the characters lined up at a long table in front of the tunnel -- for no reason! Except to take advantage of the fact that Branagh had fifty movie stars in a movie he was shooting in 65mm and had been cooped up on a train for the whole rest of the movie. It was such a great moment!
Sandler's getting so much attention for it, but I think it's because he's so terrible in ALMOST EVERYTHING ELSE that it seems faintly miraculous that he's bearable here (and the movie opens with a long Sandler segment, so you're either in or out right off the bat). Stiller's got what can only be called the Ben Stiller part, and I guess he knows how to do it if anyone does.
But it's really smart and well-written (except for the Emma Thompson part, which seems truncated or something) and I highly recommend it.
I'd actually go to the theater to watch this one.
I'm so much not a fan I have to agree--his thievery and plagiarism incenses me no end, because he's a clever robber of souls and his stuff gets substituted for his incomparably worthier sources.
Also looking forward to The Post.
Saw Coco and just loved it. Please take anyone who equates Day of the Dead with Halloween to be educated. And unless you are a huge Frozen fan, show up 15 minutes late so you won't have to watch the new Frozen short.
Even without having seen it, I'm pulling hard for Allison Janney in I, Tonya for best supporting...but it will be hard to not give it to Laurie Metcalf in Ladybird. She is having a VERY good year.
Last night, my son and I watched Wild River and oh my gosh, it was good - my heart was in my mouth for about half the movie. Very understated with a beautiful score and just enough dialogue to make it work.
But are you talking about Wind River? Suspiciously Babara Loden-free!
Don't bother. She has nothing to work with—it's a cardboard cutout of a role. We saw the movie today and I thought it was horrible, an absolutely reprehensible movie. I don't get the "black humor" label because there is not one funny moment in it, unless your idea of funny is laughing at backward rednecks—which, in fact, the audience in the upper west side theater where we saw it certainly did. It felt like sitting and listening to a bunch of white people laugh at a minstrel show. Zero nuance in any of the characters, including Tonya, lots of weird stereotyping (the fat guy eating sloppily in every shot). The fact that she was an incredibly gifted skater and loved what she did never felt real or true—you never once wanted to root for her. Honestly, it was one of the most morally bankrupt films I've ever seen (our entire party of four agreed).
But hey, don't take my word for it.
The Shape of Water is very beautiful -- parts of Beauty and the Beast, Amelie and Free Willy all sewn together into something altogether strange and unusual. I thought it was going to go wrong about fifty times but it makes one right choice after another and ends up being practically perfect. It's a two-hour long swooooon. There's one moment -- and I won't give it away -- that's so spectacularly nervy and movie-love-saturated that even if the whole rest of the movie was a disaster, I'd forgive it. It's only about a minute long, but they leave any hint of it out of the previews and that's an incredibly wise decision because I literally gasped out loud when it happened.
The fact that she was an incredibly gifted skater and loved what she did never felt real or true—you never once wanted to root for her.
During the titles at the end you see footage of the real Tonya skating—and then you see it, and realize just how much joy there was in her skating—both for her and for the audience, because it was absolutely contagious. But if that was the filmmaker's point, two hours of mean-spiritedness is an awfully long time to wait for that particular punch line.
The Shape of Water is on our holiday moviegoing list. Also Three Billboards.
I've said many times that she was ahead of her time -- both in personality (has there ever been a Trumpier heroine?) and particular skillset; now the way scores are determined (changed after the French judge debacle in Calgary), she would have walked away with all of it.
To go further off-topic, I really dislike the current scoring system. It took me from being a life-long fan to not watching figure skating at all.
appealing or funny in the least, even though I do have these elitist thoughts myself, I just don't want to see them advertised on a big screen.
Martin McDonagh directed one of my all time favorite movies "In Bruges". This movie is due to be released early January.
Alan, don't not see I, Tonya just on our say-so—lots of other people, including reviewers, have liked it a lot (which is how we got there in the first place). It may be that the class tone-deafness that we objected to so much is our particular area of prickliness, since it obviously doesn't bother everyone. If you don't mind coughing up the price of a ticket for something you may or may not like, I'd say go see it and let me know what you think, since I'm really interested to hear from someone who got something else out of it than I did.
Oh, when Jenny Lind starts to sing, its a contemporary song. I said to David, shouldn't she be doing something of that time? My dear husband replied, if Hamilton can do rap, she can do anything she likes )
Anyways,Three Billboards...is a wonderful film about an extremely angry and extremely fucked up town. Really shows the rage and confusion that seems so endemic in so much of the U S right now.
We went with our friends Steve and Mary to see this and apparently we only go see Dunkirk themed movies with them. (Still liked Dunkirk better but that was just a different styled film altogether so maybe it was that.)
I couldn't believe it turned out to be a follow-your-dreams, don't-hide-your-light, realign-the-stars (seriously, those are lyrics from the songs) musical, but then I thought, well, during the Depression, they made the dumbest, fluffiest musicals on earth, so these must be REALLY DARK TIMES for them to make this.
I liked the bearded lady, though.
ETA thought you were talking about films, then found the info on the Broadway show from the 80s. That would be interesting to see. Wonder if there was a reason they didn't just use that one? (
I also thought it was peculiar to give old-man Getty such a Shakespearean/operatic ending -- who was tending those roaring fires in all those hearths at two in the morning? -- when they'd kind of made the point that he was just another kind of con man earlier in the movie.
First up! Darkest Hour, which was only so-so, but I think we've been over-saturated with Dunkirk-related stories this year, so that probably didn't help. It's an Iron Lady-type movie -- abig fancy showstopping central performance (largely done by the makeup department, if you ask me), surrounded by a curiously un-rousing movie that you'll never want to watch again. Oldman will clean up in some areas, I'm sure, but I think the main accomplishment of the performance is that he didn't seem like Gary Oldman.
Then I snuck over to Molly's Game, which is fun and fizzy until it decides to embrace a gooey father/daughter redemption sort of ick. Lots of Sorkin talk talk talk, though, and I do like that, even if Molly sounds just like almost every other smart Sorkin female.
So an eh and a meh from me, but at six bucks per, a fine way to spend an afternoon.
I thought it was wildly sympathetic to Tonya -- but I'm guessing it had to be since it was based on interviews with her and Gillooly. She seemed....complicit, but not TOO complicit, which I myself think just isn't true.
As a movie, I thought it had a great first two-thirds and then it sort fell apart after "the incident," largely because we were spending too much time with Gillooly and his henchguy and Tonya was on the edges for too long, storywise. And you're right about it not being very funny, but a lot of that - for me - had to do with the way it was sold to me vs what it actually was. I teared up a little for her a couple of times.
But "lick my ass, Diane; she can do a fucking triple" is as elegant a line as Noel Coward ever managed.
There's also something super-generous going on when the big patriotic speech moment goes to a peripheral character and not Streep or Hanks.
I totally get your point about I, Tonya, DG. And yeah, it's nasty to everyone, there is that. I think at least part of our discomfort with it came from where we saw it, in a theater full of Upper West Siders who laughed at everything. It made me feel hostile, honestly. And I really didn't like the fourth wall-breaking, which was clearly the trump card (zero pun intended) and didn't come off right, I think.
Also I still don't get what everyone saw in Allison Janney's role. She was fine in it but it was so two-dimensional as written, it wasn't like she had a whole lot to do other than be a great big bitchy chain-smoking caricature. I imagine that's what people liked.
We didn't make it to any of the movies we wanted to see over our break because it was too goddamned cold to walk to the subway and we were too busy boiling giant pots of water on the stove to stay warm. But we did watch a couple on the big TV—I never watch movies at home so that was an event in itself: Bergman's Fanny and Alexander, which was wacky and strange and terribly beautiful, and Blade Runner 2049, which was pretty crappy—though some of the sets were great. I bet they paid Harrison Ford a boatload of money for that one.
I do know what you mean about the audience context; I saw it at our only arthouse, in the wealthiest liberal enclave in town and was expecting a response similar to your audience's. But I ultimately thought the audience agreed with me, that it was a much sadder movie than any of us had been led to believe. There was some OVER laughing in that way there ALWAYS is an this particular theater, but it settled down when people onscreen started getting slapped around.
Yesterday I saw Phantom Thread and to my complete surprise I really thought it was a masterpiece. Those clothes and those houses! The plot is very Jamesian and it’s so literate and disturbing and Day Lewis who I’m tired of was just sensational. Really a beautiful film. I’ve seen all of the biggies for this season and this is by far the best.
dg, have you seen it yet?
If you had issues with the way I, Tonya treated poor white folks, this one's gonna be a tough row to hoe for you also.
All that said, though-- I loved watching it! It's very entertaining...which might still be the wrong word. I didn't quite know which way things were going to turn from scene to scene...which might be what's wrong with it, actually, I dunno.
And that completes my main Oscar nominees slate with the exception of Denzel. The only things I'd change from their lists -- I'd pull out Margot Robbie and put in Cynthia Nixon and sub The Florida Project's Bria Vinaite for Mary J. Blige. I'd also drop The Darkest Hour from the Best Picture race. Other than that, it's a very respectable (if maybe a little predictable) slate of nominees; there are no humongous embarrassments.
And I would definitely do it with the fish guy.
Edit: Oops. It is the Shape of Water, yes
The fish guy also plays a major character on the new Star Trek series. Looks fairly similar in that role too.
I watched Wind River the other night. I like how quickly it solved the murders, and I took far too much pleasure in the deaths at the end. Wish the movie had put the Indigenous actors at the fore, instead of Renner and Olsen (even though I thought both were quite good). In particular, Tantoo Cardinal, who is a stunning actress. All she got to do was raise her eyebrows at Olsen's underwear. I did appreciate the text on missing Indigenous women at the end -- Winnipeg has far too many -- and the the director's respect for women. Plus scenery. Scenery was good.
Movie on TV Laurence Anyways French a wonderful three hours viewing for me, it has won many awards, I shall be keeping this one on my harddrive.
was about 22. he is a major talent. The film that comes after Laurence Anyways-mommy is a knock-out.
Marvel things -- the prerequisite car chase (mitigated somewhat by Lupita Nyong'o standing on the roof the car looking AWESOME), and a fight scene at the end that really doesn't make sense narratively.
Thrilled about Olman and McDormand, and Coco, tho I wish there was an honorable mention for Loving Vincent - really an amazing work of art.
I liked Shape of Water just fine whilst in the theater, but it's soured in memory. And don't even get me started on Three Billboards. For me, it was this years La-La Land and I just got more and more pissed as I was watching it. I'm not sorry Frances McDormand won - she's the only thing that gives that film any shred of decency. But sheesh, she's a movie star and she's married to a director so she's hardly risking anything to get all the women to stand up in the theater. Ho hum.
Now I'm going back to my grumpy troll hut under the bridge.
OOps, one more - Johnny Greenwood not winning for best score? That made me mad.
and although I've seen some of the nominees, I have zero interest in the winner. Shape of Water
was filmed in Toronto where I live and the media has been beside itself because of it's success and
win-it's sooooo tiresome. And the speeches-so sanctimonious and just such a tremendous bore. I think from the little I picked up today I'm going to go home and just delete the whole thing. The only part I find interesting are the memorials and I can catch that on you tube.
I'm with you on Three Billboards. We're going to be so collectively embarrassed by it in a decade, like the way we are with Crash.
I want longer speeches, longer montages and fewer skits.
>383 laurenbufferd: Albert Finney for me has played the best Winston ever in The Gathering Storm
Went to see a delightful English movie "Finding Your Feet" I hardly recognized Timothy Spall, he has lost so much weight.
Also just saw "Lady Bird." It was ok. I'm growing really bored by movies, books, and TV about kids. I know that's overly broad, but I'm an old childless lesbian and I'm growing impatient about my entertainment.
Speaking of old lesbians, we also saw "Battle of the Sexes." I thought it was wildly entertaining. Emma Stone was very good, although somewhat miscast. Steve Carell was funny, and way more likeable than the real-life Bobby Riggs. It was fun.
Next up: "A Quiet Passion" and "Florida Project" (let's see if my weariness of kids applies here). Can you tell we just bought an Amazon Fire Stick?
We also watched Paddington, which you should probably skip—kids AND talking bears, and Nicole Kidman doing a Cruella DeVil turn. I thought it was fun, and the CGI was extremely well done. I basically forgot he wasn't a real talking bear, which is something.
It's not that I don't like kids--I have liked several of them. I'm just not very entertained by them, artistically speaking.
Meow meow still don't meow Daniel Striped Tiger.
There is no one who respected kids more and didn't try to sell them anything. Revolutionary.
I was exactly the right age for Rogers and watched him until a boy I liked said he was uncool and I promptly stopped (silly me). But I still remember the feeling of security and warmth he provided. I enjoyed the American Sesame St. too, but Rogers was the jam.
re the title - wonder who chose it, the original author, or her niece who continued the book after her aunt died. I suspece the aunt had another title, and the neice was told to make it more marketable to book groups....
It's my favorite book too, and part of the reason why is that it meanders (look I love it, but it MEANDERS) for such a long time and then suddenly you hit the home stretch and it's sixty or seventy pages of true unadulterated joy unlike any I've run across in all of literature.
One of the miracles of it is that I loved it so much when I was so young (I first read it as a callow college junior; it was pushed on me by a librarian who was determined to make me a more thoughtful person) -- I love it even more now that I'm older, though parts of it now seem almost unbearable in their accuracy with regards to aging and friendship.
However, they loved Mama Mia Here We Go Again (as did I, because Cher singing Fernando was worth the price of admission), so its important to take all reviews with a grain of salt.
a gender thing-but all of that social media drove me insane. It's such a sad state of the world we live in. And of course I walked out of the theatre and everyone was on their cell phones. I saw
a group of three people and instead of engaging with one another they were all on their phones.
I think the generation that this movie talks about is so lost-it just really made me ill. And no I don't own a mobile.
I do think eighth grade is different for boys than it is for girls, so it's hard for me to judge it accurately, but I thought a lot of what was going on in the movie was universal -- the social media stuff was just a 21st century version of what always goes on in these kinds of movies. It used to be in teen and pre-teen movies that there was always a scene about lunchroom anxiety -- where to sit, will anyone talk to me, etc -- and now that seems to have turned into a scene about "will anyone like my YouTube video" or "I didn't get very many Instagram likes." It feels like the same thing to me, at least movie-device-wise.
(slight spoiler ahead)
And it's telling that she shuts down her YouTube channel -- one of her great realizations is to stop worrying about social media and go have dinner with the dorky kid.
and the high school friend wanted her to do something and she said-No, I don't feel comfortable
doing that. I really admired her for that.
But then I really didn't care for Lady Bird either so...
My partner taught Bel Canto in high school for years and he dreads to see what they did with the book because it's one of his all-time favorites.
Saw a great little indy movie on Demand that just came out - Support the Girls - a day in the life movie about the manager of an also-ran sports bar a la Hooters called Double Whammies on an access road somewhere off a Texas highway. The acting was fantastic, eps the lead Regina Hall, relentlessly cheerful despite the odds, determined to protect her employees, and deal with her depressed husband. It reminded me of Last Night at the Lobster - the dignity people bring to the lowliest of jobs.
We also saw a great restored print of Andrei Rublev, but I'm guessing nobody wants to talk about that. I liked it, anyway. Again, not so much of a date movie, unless you're us and the other couple we saw it with (which I guess makes it a double date movie).
Her Cinderella is even better (you see it after the above is finished)
Google did a cool Doodle of her work a few years ago
Shape of Water and Three Billboards were okay. The acting in both movies was fine, especially some very subtle stuff by McDormand and Harrelson. The more I see of Rockwell, the more he impresses me.
I loved The Florida Project. The acting was astonishingly real across the board as was the entire premise and execution. That had to be a hard movie to make.
Of the Oscar nominations, I was genuinely surprised by how much I liked Roman J. Israel, Esq. I haven't been a big fan of Denzel's late career, but this was a great story with truly wonderful performances.
2018 has been The Year of Nordic Noir and The Year of War for me. Most of my video favorites this year have been little known Nordic Noir TV miniseries and 4 war movies: Journey's End is a perfectly imagined flick about WW1 trench warfare that really affected me (it felt like a video representation of Brooke's, Sassoon's, Owen's, etc. poetry), 12 Strong based on a true, early event in the Afghan war that concentrates more on its humanity than machismo, The 12th Man is another movie based on fact and it takes place during WW2 in Norway. It portrays one of the most thrilling human endurance and escape sagas I've seen recently (plus, it has gorgeous scenery), Mother of Mine is a Finnish flick about children being sent to live with Swedish families during WW2 that's informative, beautifully acted and filmed, and incredibly poignant in a very old-school way.
Woman Walks Alone and Mary Shelley were two gems I also really enjoyed. I've read extensively by and about The Romantics, and I had a few issues with Shelley, but overall it's one of the better movies about the subject matter.
My hands down favorite this year, so far, is Lean on Pete. I'm a major Vlautin fan and absolutely loved that book. I was so worried that the movie version wouldn't do the book justice, but my fears were unfounded.
Where did you watch your Noir flicks/shows?
Mir, I found them on Amazon (I sub to MHz Choice, Walter Presents, Britbox, and Acorn which are great resources for International TV shows and miniseries), Netflix, and Hulu. When I get a chance I'll make a list. I'm obsessed with that genre. Plus, I just love the scenery.
Bel Canto is a millimeter away from being a camp classic -- it's THAT bad and inching right up on funny because of it. It's a classic case of someone reading a book and only thinking it's about the plot and that dumb person ends up being the person who makes the movie. Poor Julianne Moore; you feel sorrier for her than you do the opera singer she plays; making her be in this movie is the real terrorist act. THERE'S YOUR BLURB, POSTER DESIGNERS!
The Children Act, though! Emma is better than the rest of it, but the whole thing is pretty good -- it's the kind of part she used to get to do all the time and can do in her sleep but hardly ever gets to anymore so she really tears into it. I do think her one weakness as an actress is that she can't play less "smart," but that serves her well here -- her character being the smartest person in the room at any given time is the part! And she communicates it really well, how frustrating that is. So it's basically a movie about how Emma Thompson is smarter than you and it makes her crazy that you don't know it. But that's a rave from me! It's actually very good and the story has a good not-quite hairpin in the middle. Not really a plot hairpin, but a kind-of-movie hairpin.
We have a nice big screen in the family room with a very good sound system which comes close to mimicking the theater experience. I love kicking back in my favorite chair, being able to take a break or grab a snack whenever I want. Plus, I friggin' love having the power to rewind at will.
I'd have to travel to Jupiter or West Palm to find theaters that play most of the movies I prefer. I've discovered a whole other world of International TV and foreign movies thanks to the wonders of streaming. I'd never get to see that stuff in my area.
It's tanking, so go see it while, if, you can -- it's shot super-wide and a lot of that will be lost on a TV screen
Did I post that I went to see Bad Night at El Royale? I thought it was a hot mess, but still fun to see because lots to talk about. Doddard needs to either direct or write -- not both -- but he's got lots of interesting things going on in his head.
Oh, and I finally saw The Shining. It had taken on mythic status for me, so it was interesting to discover how un-scary it is. Now I'm going to dig up the documentary on it, cause I wanted to discuss it for hours after. And the soundtrack was probably the best part of the movie. Kubric does put together a talented team.
I thought the whole thing was a bit tighter than the book. But, I also thought it was a bit more positive than the book. They hint at a bit of an arc for Charlie, and if I remember, there really wasn't any, was there? In the book he only returns home because there is not other choice for him.
I think Charlie comes off more human in the movie than in the book, but that could be the magic of casting; Reilly is, after all, Mr Cellophane -- it's hard for him to not garner our goodwill.
I confess that the thing that affected me the most in both the movie AND the book was Charlie's horse. I won't say any more other than I was glad they left it in; it helps with the humanization of Charlie in both. I dunno if human is the right word; it's just important that he comes off as other-than-Eli.
We are NOT feeling Halloween this year and will probably go to the movies instead. I wish the Lee Israel movie was playing. Dying to see that.
Lauren, I didn't love the book as much as others, but I quite liked the movie -- it is violent though, so there's that.
Next up First Man, because the kid loves all things Damien Chazelle, and then I'm intrigued by Collette (probably because The Guardian keeps throwing up their positive review on my FB stream) -- has anyone seen it?
Saturday we're seeing Bohemian Rhapsody for my kid's 18th and I'm looking forward to that.
Also, I love Awkwafina.
Also, Jane Curtin!!!
Also, Justin Vivien Bond as the drag queen and singing Lou Reed's Goodnight Ladies as the credit's rolled. SOB!
I watched The Happlyland Murders last night with my older son. It's like an Avenue Q detective noir. If the idea of a muppet ejaculating (for a long time) bothers you, don't see it. But I laughed my head off.
It's interesting how many Hollywood-people-related projects there have been lately where you just get a single slice of the larger biography -- this one, the Joan & Bette Feud thing, Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool...it's an approach I like much better than the whole-lifetime, cradle-to-fame kind of movie bio, like Ray or whatever.
John C Reilly had a very good 2018 between Stan & Ollie and The Sisters Brothers (he could not be more different in the two movies, or scarcely better). And a total of ten people saw those two movies, sadly.
Has anyone see Leonard and Marianna. We did yesterday and man, I thought it was just awful - not poorly made but why was it made? It wasn't much of a story and there was so little about her life to share, it felt very one-sided. Because she was a beautiful and kind muse and their relationship inspired some of his greatest songs? God, that made me squirm. It felt reductive and sexist and so so sad. Also, many of the young expat kids that were on the island at the time (the 70s) were exposed to drugs and sex and other behaviors and their stories were horrifying; Marianne's own son ended up being institutionalized.
At one point I thought this movie was going to kill my admiration for Cohen and my love for many of his songs and considered walking out but I stayed and really don't feel it will have an adverse effect. It's not like I didn't know some of that before hand. What rock star wasn't a shithole in the 1970s?
One funny scene - him shaving whilst tripping. Also, Judy Collins' insane wig. Send in the clown.
Please tell me if you loved it and why.