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Old April 15th 09, 01:50   #701
Jade Jaguar
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Re: What are you watching now?

Even though I got not the slightest bit of encouragement from anyone here the last two times I touted some cinema of the weird offering on Turner Classic Movies, I'm going to do it again.

Saturday, 2:15am EDT, TCM is showing The World's Greatest Sinner. Unavailable on DVD, so rare and obscure that I have never seen it, but I've long wanted to. Made in 1962, it is a satire of religion, politics, sex and rock and roll. A bored insurance salesman forms a religious cult and runs for office. The score was composed by the 22 year old Frank Zappa. Here's a review, and a link to a description:
http://www.allmovie.com/work/the-wor...-117743/review
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Old April 15th 09, 03:58   #702
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Re: What are you watching now?

That the flick made by Zappa's English teacher? (IIRC my Zappa lore correctly)

I watched a bunch of flicks over the weekend: Slumdog Millionaire, Taken, and Gran Torino. All three pretty much deliver what you'd expect after watching the trailor.
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Old April 15th 09, 04:55   #703
Jade Jaguar
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Re: What are you watching now?

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Originally Posted by GKarsEye View Post
That the flick made by Zappa's English teacher? (IIRC my Zappa lore correctly)
I couldn't say. The film maker is character actor Tim Carey. I don't know if he also taught English.
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Old April 15th 09, 05:16   #704
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Re: What are you watching now?

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Originally Posted by Jade Jaguar View Post
I've been watching Anime since before it was called Anime. It used to be called "Japanimation." But, most of it, I don't care for. I particularly dislike that most of the lead characters have identical faces. Ugh! That said, Grave of the Fireflies is a great film. Princess Mononoke is pretty much typical Anime, but better than a lot.
The strange and wonderful thing about anime is that it can be astonishingly crude and basic... and then give you images of astonishing beauty. I recall a movie about police in robot suits which also included some stunning cityscapes, and let the camera linger on them. It was rather unexpected.

Anime can also do nightmare fuel pretty well.
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Old April 15th 09, 15:48   #705
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Re: What are you watching now?

Do you mean Patlabor ? Always wanted to watch that. I still love Akira, and rate it up there with BaldeRunner. Not watched much else, but am always partial to a bit. I agree on the 'genericness' feel of it all, although that may partly be down to Western sensibilities and conditioning.
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Old April 15th 09, 17:51   #706
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Re: What are you watching now?

Yeah, it was Patlabor 2, I think. I only saw the first 20 minutes or so.

Akira was impressively confusing. Trigun's probably my favorite anime, although I want to see more of Miyazaki's stuff.
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Old April 19th 09, 17:50   #707
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Re: What are you watching now?

[QUOTE=Sisko;340478]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cell View Post
As usual, full reviews can be found at,

Bill's Movie Emporium
http://billsmovieemporium.wordpress.com/



Tenkű No Shiro Rapyuta (Castle In The Sky, 1986)
Great animation, a lot of fun, cool characters, deep messages, great action, I can't say anything bad about this film. Yet another gem from Miyazaki, a really cool movie that plays across so many genres and should be fun for anyone.


CelI would like your take on these if you have seen them.
Princess Mononoke (my favorite in Japaneese with English sub titles).
Grave of the fire flies.
Only Yesterday.
Last two can't find in DVD
I like most Studio Ghibli films
Thanks.
I reviewed Grave Of The Fireflies on my site, and for the local paper, but it is an amazing movie, currently sits in my all time top 10. Princess Mononoke is also an amazing film, but I have yet to see only Yesterday.

As usual, full reviews can be found at,

Bill's Movie Emporium
http://billsmovieemporium.wordpress.com/

On Golden Pond (1981)
I don't understand why this movie has such a bad rep, it really is all times of great. Hepburn and Fonda are amazing, and the story is simple but it works. Great from start to finish.

Millions (2004)
There are moments when the narrative is interrupted to the point of exasperation, but, overall a fun fantasy film. People trying to apply real world dynamics to this film are missing the point because this is clearly a fantasy tale. Great acting from the kids.

The Rats Of Tobruk (1944)
An abysmal WWII film, it does everything wrong and feels like complete fluff in the process.

Ghost Dog: The Way Of The Samurai (1999)
Cool movie, that's what I most took away from this. There are moments when it's a bit too heavy with the philosophy and it too gadget heavy, but the music is great, the acting is great and the film ends up as a fun experience.

Election (1999)
Good acting all around, but it is sad to see Reese Witherspoon here and then realize she has wasted all her talent on romantic comedies. Funny and smart, I enjoyed the great majority of the movie, even if I didn't completely buy some moments with Mr. McAllister at the end.

The Night Of The Hunter (1955)
Great atmosphere throughout, some great acting and a simple, but well done take, on the classic of good versus evil. The one underwater shot may be the best looking single sequence I've ever seen. My lone complaint is that the ending was stretched out a bit too much, it really should have ended in the barn.

Sweet Smell Of Success (1957)
A well made film, but it pounds away at you with its viewpoint so much that after a while I was numb to the entire experience. It would have helped if I was given some sort of respite from Curtis and Lancaster, but I realize that falls on the lack of ability shown by the two actors in the love story. This is a film where i can recognize how well made it is, but I felt like I was constantly getting clubbed over the head and beaten down while watching it, and that became quite repetitive.

Ikiru (1952)
Takashi Shimura is all kinds of awesome, him backing down the gangsters by slowly shuffling around is beyond awesome. Moved at a slow pace, but I didn't mind, I actually thought the last half of the film was its real strength and elevated a good but normal first half.

Batman (1989)
The characters are all woefully underdeveloped, the plot really doesn't matter, but this was a lot of fun. It looks great, Gotham has never looked better or more realistic from afar, Nicholson is really good and the music is superb. Still far better than either of Nolan's atrocities.

Ace In The Hole (1951)
My favorite Wilder, funny, dark, cynical, just superb. It's well acted, it works as a noir but it also subverts the tropes of the noir genre. I even love the ending as I see it as more calculation on Douglas' part as opposed to a change of heart. Oh, the dialogue, such great dialogue.

Tonari No Totoro (My Neighbor Totoro, 1988)
Pure joy, that's the best way I can think to describe Totoro. From beginning to end it was a pleasure to watch, the type of uplifting movie that doesn't come along often. The relationship between the sisters is engaging, as are the actions and interactions of every character in the movie. I would put this behind Spirited Away as far as Miyazaki's movies go, such an excellent movie. Oh yeah, the Catbus is awesome.

Network (1976)
I didn't really view this as a satire. Maybe I would have in 1976, but viewed as a satire I think one has to be completely naive about the media and somehow believe that the business was honest and consisted of nothing but good guys prior to the 70's. I took Network as more of an honest slight against the media and against us, because really, who's worse, the media for producing exploitative material or us for continuing to tune in and watch it?

Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003)
Probably the closest I have come to declaring a Tarantino effort to be any good, but I still couldn't go there. He does some things I like, the look and setting of the final fight, the color used throughout and as usual the music. But, there was plenty that didn't work or outright sucked. The anime was bad, admittedly I don't like that animation studio, but man was it ever all kinds of bad. The movie stopped, just completely stopped the moment Sonny Chiba entered the picture and I had to fight the urge to fall asleep or just abandon the movie. But, most of all it isn't a complete movie, it's a total rip off. It's not even a movie that begs for a sequel, Kill Bill, Vol. 1 doesn't have an ending, it doesn't have a narrative, it's a totally incomplete movie. And Tarantino is the one who decided to cut the original full movie in half, so there's no excuse for this not feeling like a complete film.

The Hudsucker Proxy (1994)
The Movie really did look gorgeous, and there were moments of laughter. But, in trying to mimic a golden era screwball comedy the Coens forgot two important things, heart and a lead character that we care about.

The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951)
While I appreciate the subject matter and did find this appealing, I didn't find it anywhere near worthy of the masterpiece label now that I have revisited it all these years later. It's good, but it's also too cold and emotionless in parts. It also lacks any character development whatsoever, with the characters feeling more like props than anything else. Still, an interesting story and ideas I could associate with make up for the emotionless tone and dead ending.

Hannah And Her Sisters (1986)
I wouldn't put this above Annie Hall as far as Woody's best and my favorite goes, but it's up there. An excellent study of what makes people tick, how we are all a little bit crazy and how our craziness is in the end what allows us to live. Really funny too, and possibly my favorite line of all time,

“How the hell do I know why there were Nazis? I don’t know how the can opener works!”

The Man Who Wasn't There (2001)
I still think Fargo is the best Coens picture, but this is tied with Fargo for my favorite. It looks gorgeous, the black and white cinematography is exquisite, the shot where the glass cracks as Billy Bob is pressed against is a sight to see. This is a film that is odd and dark, it's about how one man perceives things and how despite all his intentions he is an idiot. It's funny, honest, just great all around.

High Plains Drifter (1973)
Great Western from Clint Eastwood. It's a weird amalgamation of the classic, spaghetti & modern Western with some supernatural elements thrown in as well. The direction is simple, but effective. Eastwood's the Stranger is a fantastic character and the epitome of the movie amoral stance on what it is showing. There's also some brilliant cinematography.

Shocker (1989)
This movie sucked, easily one of the worst I've ever seen. Not even so bad it's good, just downright terrible, that's all there is to say about it.

Traffic (2000)
Easily my favorite Soderbergh, although my exposure to him is very limited. The stories are weaved together tremendously, I loved Soderbergh's use of color hues to distinguish where we were at in the world and the acting was great. It doesn't really say anything in its message, it just presents the truth, that drugs are rampant and that governments are losing the drug war. An all around great movie.

The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956)
One of Hitchcock worst films, even worse than the original that I found pretty bad. The story isn't interesting and is even more ludicrous than I expect from Hitchcock who loved ludicrous stories. The payoff isn't a payoff at all and none of the humorous moments work. A bad film no matter how you slice it.

McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971)
McCabe & Mrs. Miller is big on atmosphere, and I do love its atmosphere, the music of Leonard Cohen and the dirty Old West that the movie puts forth. However, I felt the movie was too on the nose in its deconstruction of the Old West and was plagued by some iffiness with the way the final showdown was shot. A good movie, but not a great one.

This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
There's really not much to be said about This Is Spinal Tap that hasn't already been said. There are some minor moments that aren't funny, but on the whole it is hilarious with lots of great moments and awkward pauses. This is the sort of dry humor that I love.
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Old April 19th 09, 18:30   #708
GKarsEye
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Re: What are you watching now?

I'm also a huge fan of Election and agree w/ you about Witherspoon.
If you haven't already done so, check out Man on the Moon, one of her first films. It's a pretty simple little coming-of-age type movie and she's so young, maybe 13 or so, but so good.
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Old April 20th 09, 07:22   #709
Jade Jaguar
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Re: What are you watching now?

I'm a big Robert Mitchum fan, and Night of the Hunter is one of his best, even if he does play the bad guy.

Ikiru is also great, as are most films by Kurosawa. Check out Dersu Uzala, if you've never seen it.

As previously stated, I'm not much of an anime fan, but I did like My Neighbor Totoro. Who wouldn't love a catbus? If I owned a bus, I'd paint it to look like that.

I can't agree with you on The Hudsucker Proxy. True, it isn't as good as Fargo, but it's in my top five Coen bros. films.

What I'm currently watching is Joe Bob Briggs, from Joe Bob Briggs' Drive In Theater. I recorded roughly 70 hours of Joe Bob's film commentaries, spanning about 8 years, 1988 to 1994, from his old show on The Movie Channel. I am currently transferring them to the HDD of my DVDR, editing them, and burning them to disc. I ran across another Joe Bob fan on the Audio Video Science Forum, and he is going to be trading me bunches of stuff for them.
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Last edited by Jade Jaguar; April 20th 09 at 07:27.
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Old June 9th 09, 01:00   #710
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Re: What are you watching now?

Several People have expressed an interest in Akira Kurosawa (sp?). I noticed this weekend on TCM, there was an advertisement for Seven Samurai to be aired on Thursday at 8PM ET, in case people might be interested in it.
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