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Gatsby's New and Improved Flick Critique

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So, Gatsby, I've just gone through and read every single word in this thread. I agree with the others who say that your reviews have improved significantly. I'm also really enjoying the humorous incorporation of Judge Judy into your rating scale -- that's a nice touch to help yourself stand out. You're a good writer. And when you take into consideration that English isn't even your native tongue, that makes your writing skills even more impressive. You write better in English than the majority of English-speaking people I know. Same goes for MovieMeditation and some of the other foreign members of the forum. I'm not sure if that's an indictment against American schools or a testament to how intelligent and gifted some of you MoFos are. (Probably a little bit of both.) Now, if only you could get rid of those annoying hieroglyphic symbols that keep popping up in some of your reviews . . .

It seems like our opinions on films are usually in the same ballpark, and that trend continues with these reviews. I especially enjoyed your review for Aguirre, the Wrath of God. That's the movie that made me fall in love with Herzog and Kinski. I agree with you about the documentary-like feel of the film. It's that level of realism that lends the film so much power. Have you ever seen Fitzcarraldo? If not, check it out. I'm confident that you'll love it.

I haven't seen The Rock in forever, but I remember it being a very fun action film. Never heard of Mr. Hulot's Weekend. I haven't seen Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind since it first came out, so I don't really know how I feel about it now, but I remember liking it. Your thoughts on Moonrise Kingdom mirror my own. I expect The Graduate to place in the top ten on the 60's Countdown. It barely missed making my own list. The General remains a staggering technical achievement. Annie Hall is my favorite Woody Allen film, although I'm not really a big fan of the director. I think it's Allen's funniest film by far. Even that "I'm into leather" .gif you posted made me laugh.

The only review where we don't see eye-to-eye is The Blair Witch Project. Personally, I love it, so I don't understand the vitriol that it receives with people saying that it's one of the worst films they've ever seen. Typically, I hate found-footage films, finding them lazy and obnoxious and gimmicky, but The Blair Witch Project is the best pure found-footage film that I've seen. I think it's a very effective horror film. I grew up in the boondocks surrounded by woods, so maybe that's why I find the film so damn creepy. The ending always gives me chills. Plus I love the film's ambiguity. You can watch it with the interpretation that the woods are really haunted or that it's just a bunch of twisted locals f*cking with them. In a way, I also find the film very inspiring. The Blair Witch Project is so incredibly simple that it feels like something I could've made with friends, yet it became a huge financial success and kinda revolutionized the genre (albeit negatively, perhaps). Maybe that's why people don't like it --- because it feels like something anybody could've made -- but I'd think people on a movie forum would appreciate that aspect more than resent it.

Anyways, keep up the good work!

(Oh, and you and MovieMeditation should really try to refrain from performing fellatio on each other in public view of others. Only SC and I can get away that kind of debauchery.)



Master of My Domain
You write better in English than the majority of English-speaking people I know. Same goes for MovieMeditation and some of the other foreign members of the forum. I'm not sure if that's an indictment against American schools or a testament to how intelligent and gifted some of you MoFos are. (Probably a little bit of both.) Now, if only you could get rid of those annoying hieroglyphic symbols that keep popping up in some of your reviews . . .
It's probably the latter, because schools don't teach you how to appreciate cinematic masterpieces and analyze them, rather the teachers would tell you to avoid R rated films because obviously they are as harmful as meth. Which is depressing and totally wrong, and it happens universally. Plus, we all know MoFos are gifted and highly superior.

Yeah I noticed the symbols are popping up again. But don't worry. I think I finally have a solution. If it appears again in my next review, you can stick the thumbs up I gave you up my ass.

It seems like our opinions on films are usually in the same ballpark, and that trend continues with these reviews. I especially enjoyed your review for Aguirre, the Wrath of God. That's the movie that made me fall in love with Herzog and Kinski. I agree with you about the documentary-like feel of the film. It's that level of realism that lends the film so much power. Have you ever seen Fitzcarraldo? If not, check it out. I'm confident that you'll love it.
I knew we had similar tastes ever since you followed my Top 50 films thread. Great to have you join my team of followers.

I haven't seen Fitzcarraldo, I'm still a beginner when it comes to Herzog. The length kinda worries me, but the crazy premise and the always brilliant Klaus Kinski has me looking forward to it. Will check it out soon.
I haven't seen The Rock in forever, but I remember it being a very fun action film. Never heard of Mr. Hulot's Weekend. I haven't seen Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind since it first came out, so I don't really know how I feel about it now, but I remember liking it. Your thoughts on Moonrise Kingdom mirror my own. I expect The Graduate to place in the top ten on the 60's Countdown. It barely missed making my own list. The General remains a staggering technical achievement. Annie Hall is my favorite Woody Allen film, although I'm not really a big fan of the director. I think it's Allen's funniest film by far. Even that "I'm into leather" .gif you posted made me laugh.
Well, first of all, it's Mr. Hulot's Holiday, not "Weekend". Is that a film that combines the best moments of a great Tati and Godard film? I would love to see it.

Nice to see someone agree with my opinion Moonrise Kindgom and Annie Hall.
The only review where we don't see eye-to-eye is The Blair Witch Project. Personally, I love it, so I don't understand the vitriol that it receives with people saying that it's one of the worst films they've ever seen. Typically, I hate found-footage films, finding them lazy and obnoxious and gimmicky, but The Blair Witch Project is the best pure found-footage film that I've seen. I think it's a very effective horror film. I grew up in the boondocks surrounded by woods, so maybe that's why I find the film so damn creepy. The ending always gives me chills. Plus I love the film's ambiguity. You can watch it with the interpretation that the woods are really haunted or that it's just a bunch of twisted locals f*cking with them. In a way, I also find the film very inspiring. The Blair Witch Project is so incredibly simple that it feels like something I could've made with friends, yet it became a huge financial success and kinda revolutionized the genre (albeit negatively, perhaps). Maybe that's why people don't like it --- because it feels like something anybody could've made -- but I'd think people on a movie forum would appreciate that aspect more than resent it.
You'd be happy to hear that I wanted to give the film only half a star, but as a person who is currently studying the art of film and respect low-budget, independent films a lot, I upped my rating by a slight bit. You're opinions are all valid, but the film simply did nothing for me.
(Oh, and you and MovieMeditation should really try to refrain from performing fellatio on each other in public view of others. Only SC and I can get away that kind of debauchery.)
Fellatio? Haven't you noticed we go full anal in public? You are totally underestimating us. You and SC aren't the hot ones anymore.



Dude, you're making my last post on MoFo become a reality sooner and sooner with every post like this one.

If you don't want to get a divorce you shouldn't watch it with her.

Watch it alone and tell me that you hated it. I'm sure you'll dislike it more than over 10 yrs ago for the first time in the hick town since now you easily have a good taste.

Just curious, were you married to her when you watched the film?

Thank goodness nobody remade Taxi Driver, that would be something only Spike Lee would do.
Not yet



I have to return some videotapes.
So that's the bastard that started filmmakers (loosley defined nowadays, anyone can be one) to make their cameramen wiggle the camera for no apparent reason?




Master of My Domain
The Third Man (1949)




Directed by: Carol Reed
Starring: Joseph Cotten, Orson Welles, Alida Valli, Trevor Howard


But cuckoo clocks are awesome!

The necessity of a great thriller is starting from the very bottom, with characters oblivious to what will happen to them, almost on the level of the audience, whom are ready for anything once the opening credits fade away, then slowly build up into a finale through conflicts and conversations. The Third Man begins on Holly Martin (Joseph Cotten) arriving at postwar Vienna to visit his childhood friend, Harry Lime (Orson Welles). However, he soon discovers that Harry was killed in a car accident - but suspicion over it increases as a "third man" is said to have carried Lime's body. Martin encounters Anna Schmidt (Alida Valli), the heart broken lover of Lime, and the two start to uncover how these certain events were unfolded in the first place.

The reveal of Harry Lime's death is immediate. When we find out, it's less than a few minutes into the entire film. This comes as quite a shock, even if you know the basic synopsis, because the very brief, but original purpose and motive of Holly Martin is instantly removed, including our expectations; a new one is implanted. This effectively sucks viewers into the story about to unfold, and is a huge influence to modern thrillers, such as Miler's Crossing and The Departed.

The Third Man takes place in postwar Vienna, and the portrayal of the inner desolation scattered in a void city is perfect. We never get a full shot looking at the overall look at the city - instead the focus is on the barren, dark and stone-paved streets and low buildings that look like hunchbacks. The ends of streets, leading into unseen nooks, feel as if they would suck in anything that passed nearby and make transform them into an everlasting gloominess. There are shadows all around the ground, most fake, created by invisible souls of unfortunate dead hiding in the walls, shown by dutch angles. This film is one of the most atmospheric ever made, the paths always seem to face downward and the air is heavy - a visual painting brilliantly describing war aftermath, a palette fit for noir.

How I should tackle the main theme of this film is a tough cookie - it fits in so well, yet there is no clear, satisfying way to simply put it. It is extremely ominous, vibrant, with a slight breeze of suspicion and many wrenched hearts in it. Arguably, it can not be explained using a combination of adjectives, because again, it is purely made to be another part of the film. For the majority of the film, whether it's when characters talk or chases happen, the direction of the plot is uncertain. The theme bounces up and down, ranging from a "piano" level of sound to "forte" very fast, thanks to a zither. Even when Harry Lime appears, we are still uncertain if he's playing on a sincere note or a sinister one. Then the music flows, and it all enters our minds.

Harry Lime, Orson Welles' most memorable role, matching with the lasting cultural significance of Charles Foster Kane, doesn't appear until two-thirds of the film have elapsed. This is another innovative move (but now it has become common) by such an influential masterpiece. His appearance is foreshadowed by Anna's cat, but the twist comes from Lime's face when he is caught by a sudden light above. His expression consists of only a calm smile, full of of wisdom but also mischief. Welles' baritone, serene voice is used to it's best. He has become a seller of fake penicillin - but in the process did not lose his original wit and charm that made him become an acquaintance of Holly and Anna.

That's what makes Harry Lime such an interesting villain. He did not appear into the film to declare some sort of dramatic, theatrical revenge on his once allies, or reveal all of the backstory behind the plotting when he or she dies. Lime remains a charming, legendary mystery even after it has been over 60 years since the film's initial release. Shrouded in shadows, slanted by the angles, and covered in fully black attire, Welles' character is a phantom, reborn after the assumed death, and is ready to enter the underworld beneath the stoned path, and eagerly willing to drag in others as well.

The monologue spoken by Lime while trying to convince Martin inside the Prater amusement park Ferris Wheel is not only memorable but is the underlying theme of The Third Man. Shortly after the war was over, the people were still living in a world of sorrow and unexpected death, shady backstreets and already fully adapted to obtaining items through illegal ways and violence. Italy produced an entire artistic movement through endless wars, while peaceful Swiss didn't, so what's wrong with darkness' illusions?

Out of all people, a child carrying a ball falsely accuses Martin of murdering Lime's old butler, and then he is bitten by a parrot for no particular reason relating to the plot, he finds out his old friend is not dead and instead a mastermind criminal, and a woman he had hoped for ends up bitterly leaving him. The Third Man is a depressing, unforgiving, and turns to and travels the sewers. But it also one that is very cool, atmospheric, and thrilling. After all, with a subtly surreal and awesome look at Vienna, a badass villain, twisted, steady, voyeuristic camera movement, believable and intriguing characters, what else do you need. The only thing not perfect about The Third Man is wrong pronunciations of names throughout.






I think that is your best review yet Gatsby. I love The Third Man so much. You might want to tell people not to read your review till they see it. I know it's 100 years old but I went in fresh and it made for a fantastic first viewing.
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Master of My Domain
I think that is your best review yet Gatsby. I love The Third Man so much. You might want to tell people not to read your review till they see it. I know it's 100 years old but I went in fresh and it made for a fantastic first viewing.
Thanks Sean. That review is the first one I wrote that when I finished it, I said to myself; "Damn, this gon b good".

And yeah I did put in a few spoilers, because if I didn't, IMO the review would be poor. But I didn't use spoiler tags because it would interfere my planned structure of my writing. Don't know if I should regret my decision or not.
Definitely gonna give it a read later on, Gats! A promising film to do a review of, which I have yet to watch, so I hopw you don't spoil anything.
Ummm... you might want to think about that. It reveals a couple turns in the plot.



Damn, guess I'll read it whenever I get around the film. But I don't exactly have it planned for watching anytime soon. I guess I'll try to get around it asap anyways.



Master of My Domain
Damn, guess I'll read it whenever I get around the film. But I don't exactly have it planned for watching anytime soon. I guess I'll try to get around it asap anyways.
I'm gonna keep bugging you until you see it and read my review via messages, so get to it! Even better, maybe a review in your own thread?



I'd definitely hold off reading the review until you've seen the film, MM. I don't know how much the knowledge will spoil your enjoyment of such a wonderful film (and I don't think it relies on its story for its impact) but why dilute it even a smidge?



Excellent review of an excellent film, Gatsby. I've only seen The Third Man once, but it would probably already crack my top 100 just based on the strength of that one viewing. The famous "cuckoo clock" speech is one of the greatest monologues in cinema. And I don't think I've ever seen a film utilize shadows to greater effect.



Wow man that was some great reviews right here even tho I didn't really like The Third Man your review make me like the movie a little bit more and yes The Blair Witch Project is horrible and I actually like found-footage horror a lot.
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Master of My Domain
Wow man that was some great reviews right here even tho I didn't really like The Third Man your review make me like the movie a little bit more and yes The Blair Witch Project is horrible and I actually like found-footage horror a lot.
Thanks Derek. If you ever get to rewatch The Third Man I hope you like it at least a bit more. And yeah The Blair Witch Project is a disgrace to found footage, but ironically it started the whole craze.

Btw I noticed you nominated me for Best Reviewer.

Edit - Wouldn't it be awesome if The Third Man was a horror film?



Thanks Derek. If you ever get to rewatch The Third Man I hope you like it at least a bit more. And yeah The Blair Witch Project is a disgrace to found footage, but ironically it started the whole craze.

Btw I noticed you nominated me for Best Reviewer.

Edit - Wouldn't it be awesome if The Third Man was a horror film?
yeah it would be awesome but sadly I'm not the biggest fan of Film-Noir I probably gonna rewatch it one day because it's obviously a classic of the cinema