Citizen Rules...Cinemaesque Chat-n-Review

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big eyes dressed as jesters
That rings a bell! I think I've seen that one too.

I think this might be the exact art that was in my room

I did NOT like it as kid. It looked so sad and wonder I turned out the way I did

You can't make a rainbow without a little rain.
That rings a bell! I think I've seen that one too.

I think this might be the exact art that was in my room

I did NOT like it as kid. It looked so sad and wonder I turned out the way I did

That reminds me of the Sad Sam dog dolls.

That rings a bell! I think I've seen that one too.

I think this might be the exact art that was in my room

I did NOT like it as kid. It looked so sad and wonder I turned out the way I did
There are other artists that do the Big Eyes style now...

I'm glad you liked Chef, Citizen Rules, since I'm the one who recommended it. I don't think the movie is anything special, but it's the kind of simple, inoffensive, good-hearted film that does everything well. It's hard to imagine anyone disliking it, even if they may not love it or remember much about it a few weeks later. I agree with your criticism about Robert Downey Jr's role in the film. That was my least favorite part. It felt like Favreau inserted his Iron Man pal just to add some star power. Same goes for Scarlett Johansson. Their roles were pretty inconsequential, but if being able to advertise them in the trailer increased the movie's visibility then their casting served its purpose. The movie is totally pornography for the taste buds, too. They even succeeded in making something as simple as a grilled cheese sandwich look unbelievably delicious. Most of the restaurant food was far too upscale for me, but everything they cooked on the food truck had me salivating.

I like Fury a lot more than you do, but I don't necessarily disagree with your criticisms. I think you exaggerated the "video game" feel, but I wasn't expecting a realistic, Saving Private Ryan-style war film, so I enjoyed the heavy focus on action, even if most of the action scenes did strain credibility. I laughed at your comment about the tanks firing lasers, since I had the same thought while watching the movie. (In my mind I was making Star Wars-style sound effects during some of these scenes.) Fury got off to a slow start and the character archetypes are overly familiar, but I thought the second half was pretty strong. I really enjoyed the sequence with the two German women, even if the sequence did last a little too long. The showdown with the German super tank had me on the edge of my seat. And the big climactic showdown at the end was also very thrilling. I get annoyed at the reluctance of most films to kill off their heroes. I know that's less of an issue in war films, and realistically there should have been no survivors given the characters' situation, but I applaud Fury for mostly pulling no punches in that regard.

As a big fan of the first film, Dumb and Dumber To was a major letdown. There were a few funny moments, but most of it was cringe-inducing. I also think there's something inherently depressing in seeing Harry and Lloyd in middle age. I know they weren't teenagers or anything in the first film, but they were still young enough that most of life was ahead of them. Seeing that their lives are still exactly the same twenty years later and that they've seemingly gotten even dumber, their situations become more sad than funny. I had no idea until reading your review that the raspy-voiced hag in the film was Kathleen Turner. That's even more depressing. I just recently watched Romancing the Stone and Jewel of the Nile. She's very attractive in both films. I know that was thirty years ago, but she had to hit every branch of the ugly tree to transform from the sexpot she was into the unrecognizable troll she's become. Getting old sucks, man.

I've never heard of Space Station 76. Your review for it didn't quite sell it to me, but it sounds vaguely interesting. I might look up a trailer for it and see if it does anything for me.

The premise of Big Eyes doesn't excite me, but I'm one of the few who still looks forward to Tim Burton's projects, so I'll definitely rent it at some point.

It's too bad you disliked Django Unchained, but I'm not surprised given earlier comments I've seen you make about Tarantino. Before you vow to never watch another Tarantino film, please give Jackie Brown a shot. I'm sure your Tarantino bias will prevent you from loving it, but I think a lot of your misgivings about him are mostly absent from Jackie Brown, which is his most mature and sophisticated film.

Anyways, keep up the good work! I may not respond much in this thread, but I always enjoy reading your reviews.

Snowpiercer (2013)

Director: Joon-ho Bong
Writer: Joon-ho Bong
Cast: Chris Evans, Jamie Bell, Tilda Swinton, John Hurt
Genre: Action Sci-Fi
Length: 126 minutes

Snowpiercer is set in a post apocalyptic future in the year 2031...The film starts by showing us a group of forlorn, ragamuffin people who are stuck in the back tail section of a super luxury train, The Snowpiercer.

Mankind in their attempt to end global warming sprays a newly invented chemical called CW7 into the atmosphere which will lower Earth's temperature. It works too good and the planet is plunged into a deep freeze. Life becomes extinct...except on this one super train.

The Snowpiercer train is miles long and self sustaining. It comes complete with a class system. Those with a first class ticket are in the front of the train. In first class it's a life of ease and luxury. The second class ticket holders are stuck in the middle. And the forlorn ragamuffin people didn't have a ticket so they were crammed into the tail section of the train where they live in squalor, fighting for scraps of food and plotting revolution.

Their revolution is to take over the train, they want a better life, they want to be treated with dignity. Their leader is an old man (John Hurt), he needs to find a new leader from among the poor masses. His younger friend (Chris Evans) has what it takes but is not willing to lead.

One man, the engineer makes the rules, he's unseen but worshiped by 1st and 2nd class passengers and hated by the freeloaders. He's sort of a Wizard of Oz, ala train style.

This film was not my cup of tea. It varies from a deadpan gloomy Walking Dead wanna be film to a zany, colorful film with ecliptic charters reminiscent of Brazil (1985) and A Boy and His Dog (1975). With this hodge-podge style of film making, it failed to be believable. Once I fell out of the storyline I became bored. There's not much in the way of inspired acting as it's a story based film and the story wasn't focused.

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I agree with that. I was just writing my thoughts on it for the Sci-Fi Hof. If I hadn't needed to watch the entire film, I would have shut it off at the point where the black-hooded ninja guys with axes, guts a live fish. That was stupid and gross.

You can't make a rainbow without a little rain.
I agree with that. I was just writing my thoughts on it for the Sci-Fi Hof. If I hadn't needed to watch the entire film, I would have shut it off at the point where the black-hooded ninja guys with axes, guts a live fish. That was stupid and gross.

That's funny. This is an exact quote from my notes for the movie:

"This movie felt more like a horror/slasher movie than a sci-fi movie, and if it weren't part of the HoF, I probably would have turned it off during the fish/axe-figthing scene."

Wild (2014)

Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
Writers: Nick Hornby, Cheryl Strayed(book)
Cast: Reese Witherspoon, Laura Dern
Genre: Biography Drama
Length: 115 minutes

Premise: Based on the autobiography by Cheryl Strayed. A woman who after the death of her mom becomes a junkie and sex addict. Cheryl decides to make a clean break from her past by undertaking an arduous 1000 mile hike on the Pacific Coast Trail.

Review: I've hiked on a small section of the Pacific Crest Trail so I thought this would be an introspective movie about one woman's conquering of the vast 1000 miles of this multi state trail. I thought we would learn how she overcame hardship to find inner strength and peace. Wild is nothing like the one man act movie Castaway which gave us deep insight into loneliness and survival. I don't think I've ever seen a more poorly executed story than Wild.

Flash backs...this movie has more flash backs inter-cut with the main hiking story than I've ever seen. The flash backs come at the most impromptu times, breaking any sense of awe and loneliness that the hiking scenes might have shown us. We don't hardly see the trail at all. Instead we get flash backs of Cheryl (Reese Witherspoon) using heroin and having multiple sex partners in a back alley. The director relies on graphic shocking scenes to give the audiences some emotional jolt. This is film making at it's poorest.

One might think there would be stunning cinematography in a film like this. Think again. The camera work is blase. Oh sure there is the natural beauty of the Pacific Crest Trail but it's not shot with any artistry.

Reese Witherspoon doesn't get to do much here and that's odd as it's a one person show. Mainly we get her mumbling to her self about how much she hates the hike. Just to add drama, the script includes her meeting up with some leering, lonely men on the trail. Practically ever cliche that can happen does.

I found this movie unrewarding.

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Oh dear, I still really want to see Wild. Haven't finished the book yet, but it seems to have a lot of flashbacks too.

I've been on a very tiny part of the PCT as well and I was hoping the movie would highlight the meditative experience a person can have when you immerse yourself in nature.

Your low rating is making me curious. I'm going to see if Redbox has this tonight.

Which part of the PCT where you on? In the movie she starts at Mojave, which looked very dry and hot.
I was hoping the movie would highlight the meditative experience a person can have when you immerse yourself in nature.
I'd be very interested if you see that quality in the movie. That's what I was hoping to see, but didn't find it. Cool, that you're going to watch it, let me know what you think.

Your summing up of Snowpiercer was pretty much what I thought of the film too CR, and I was looking forward to it as the director has done some decent films.
I thought about watching Wild, but thought it might be one of those films that worked much better in the original book. Is it worth reading FF?

Pulp Fiction

Director: Quentin Tarantino
Writers: Quentin Tarantino, Roger Avary
Cast: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson, Tim Roth, Amanda Plummer, Bruce Willis, Rosanna Arquette, Eric Stoltz
Genre: Crime Drama Action
Length: 2 hours 14 minutes

Premise: an interwoven tale of four stories involving shady underworld characters: The daily life of two hit men, a boxer involved with a gangster, the gangster's wife and a couple who rob diners. All of their stories become intermixed.

Review: The last time I watched Pulp Fiction was over twenty years ago, at that time like most people I thought it was great. I watched it for the second time, the other day. After twenty years my opinion has changed. When Pulp Fiction first came out it was a unique indie film. Now for me that uniqueness has worn off.

On the pro side the characters are still rich and lively. I mean these are some colorful people! But the scenes drag, they go on and on past the point of the average attention span. Then there's the interesting conversations about nothing much, I.E. the famous Big Mac speech. At first this seems pretty cool, as the characters are talking like real life people. But after awhile I realized Quentin is just padding the film with random dialogue. And it grows thin. First John Travolta is an expert on an inane subject like hamburgers in Europe. Then
Samuel L. Jackson is an expert on foot massages and launches into his speech. Later this trend continues with Travolta and Uma Thurman at the restaurant both taking turns at their expert speeches.

Perhaps the worst part of the film is Quentin's acting role. Nothing takes you out of the world of Pulp Fiction like seeing Quentin act. It was such a strange juxtaposition of professional actors immersed in their roles (Travolta,Jackson) talking to Quentin in the kitchen scene. If this wasn't bad enough, Tarantino adds a block of dialogue about getting his good linen dirty when he talks to Harvey Keitel. This scene erases any integrity that the film had built up. Not to mention the entirely unnecessary scene in the junk yard with Julie Sweeney who seemed an odd choice for this film.

In short the movie is too long, the scenes are too long, and Quentin's on screen time is a distraction. Once this film might have seem like something interesting. Now it's just another flick.

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You know, I have to say that there's some merit to your criticisms of Pulp Fiction. It doesn't matter for me; I love it anyway.

I was sort of interested in seeing Wild, but certainly won't seek it out based on your review.

Pulp Fiction might be overlong, but if you love what you're watching it shouldn't matter.

Cricket good evening. You might like Wild much more than I did, (based on what you said in the top 10 reasons you won't watch a movie thread) And hey you get to see Reese topless!