33rd Hall of Fame

Tools    





I forgot the opening line.
I guess I just didn't buy into why Denny (Michael Caine) wanted to know what his call girl Simone was doing. I mean wasn't she doing what she was suppose to be doing for money? So I don't get why George (Bob Hoskinks) was ordered to find out what Simone is doing behind close doors? (other than it makes for movie tension and sets up the final bloody ending so that it can happen...But from an in-story view, it didn't seem to make sense.)...So somebody clue me in when you read this, cause the only clue I have is that: George finds a porno movie tape of Simone in an adult book store...so was that what made Denny so mad, that she was making adult movies on the sly and he wasn't getting his cut?
That exact same thought went through my head, and Neil Jordan is way too smart to have something that silly in the film so I'm guessing Denny didn't mean "What kind of sex stuff are they up to?" You see Denny with the exact customer he's talking about, Raschid (Hossein Karimbeik) doing high-roller type business in the cleverly named "Cameo Room" at the fancy hotel before he starts asking. Obviously he's learned something, and it'd have something to do with what you said - he's worried that there's some business going on there that he's being cut out of, or else she's spilling secrets. Because we never learn anything more specific (we probably should have, to set that straight) that's all we can surmise - but it's definitely nothing to do with the sexual services she's meant to be doing. They make a big joke how it's "having tea" well, in slang, "tea" is a term used to refer to gossip or inside information. She might be letting secrets out that are hurting Denny. It can also be one for drugs. So there was something that Denny was furious about, because she's working for him - not herself, and if she's telling Raschid stuff he's not meant to know about Denny, that would infuriate him as well.

When we see Raschid and Denny at the hotel, Raschid is happy and playful, while Denny is furious and upset - something might have just been shared. Another option I thought of is that Raschid might be helping Simone get the necessary papers for her and Cathy to flee the country when she finds her, or else providing some other means of escape when the time comes - Denny might be suspicious of that, and eager to stop her from getting away. That's only a possibility though.
__________________
Remember - everything has an ending except hope, and sausages - they have two.

Latest Review : Aftersun (2022)



2022 Mofo Fantasy Football Champ
A Man for All Seasons



This was my second go around with this. At the forefront is the great script and the really good dialogue here. Fred Zinnemann is a very talented filmmaker and has quite a variety of tools when it comes to his directing. Paul Schofield really brings his A game here and delivers a really great performance as Sir Thomas More. There are lulls in the film and I'm not that excited once we get to the courtroom scene but overall is a really well done film. It won't be a favorite but rather one that is seen as quite respectable.




Trouble with a capital "T"
That exact same thought went through my head, and Neil Jordan is way too smart to have something that silly in the film so I'm guessing Denny didn't mean "What kind of sex stuff are they up to?" You see Denny with the exact customer he's talking about, Raschid (Hossein Karimbeik) doing high-roller type business in the cleverly named "Cameo Room" at the fancy hotel before he starts asking. Obviously he's learned something, and it'd have something to do with what you said - he's worried that there's some business going on there that he's being cut out of, or else she's spilling secrets. Because we never learn anything more specific (we probably should have, to set that straight) that's all we can surmise - but it's definitely nothing to do with the sexual services she's meant to be doing. They make a big joke how it's "having tea" well, in slang, "tea" is a term used to refer to gossip or inside information. She might be letting secrets out that are hurting Denny. It can also be one for drugs. So there was something that Denny was furious about, because she's working for him - not herself, and if she's telling Raschid stuff he's not meant to know about Denny, that would infuriate him as well.

When we see Raschid and Denny at the hotel, Raschid is happy and playful, while Denny is furious and upset - something might have just been shared. Another option I thought of is that Raschid might be helping Simone get the necessary papers for her and Cathy to flee the country when she finds her, or else providing some other means of escape when the time comes - Denny might be suspicious of that, and eager to stop her from getting away. That's only a possibility though.
Those ideas all make sense for the scene. I bet from a production viewpoint they had shot another scene or two, but for runtime reasons or other reasons cut those scenes but couldn't cut the scenes were they reference what was going on...hence the mystery.



Trouble with a capital "T"
2 left for me. I'll probably watch Treasure of the Sierra Madre on Monday.
I'm basically done. I decided not to re-watch Shoplifters, I seen it recently enough and thought highly of it.

I was going to wait to the very end of the HoF to finish, to see if everyone else finished. But I hate having to rush things and do them in the last moments. So I'll get my voting ballot in soon.



2022 Mofo Fantasy Football Champ
I'm basically done. I decided not to re-watch Shoplifters, I seen it recently enough and thought highly of it.

I was going to wait to the very end of the HoF to finish, to see if everyone else finished. But I hate having to rush things and do them in the last moments. So I'll get my voting ballot in soon.
It helps that I wanted to rewatch all of the ones I've already seen anyways so it wasn't a big deal to me.

I will say I liked how this Hall was really spread out as far as the decades each film was in.

I thought up and idea where each participant gets a blind draw of what genre to nominate so that we would have films from each genre up for grabs. Not necessarily for the next hall of Fame, but it could be an interesting trial run in the future.



Trouble with a capital "T"
...I thought up and idea where each participant gets a blind draw of what genre to nominate so that we would have films from each genre up for grabs. Not necessarily for the next hall of Fame, but it could be an interesting trial run in the future.
Cool idea for a genre HoF. You've had a lot of good HoF ideas in the past. You should give that idea a try.



Aftersun (2024)
I liked the juxtaposition of “found footage” with “reality”. The score was really good. I liked the isolation of the Bowie’s and Freddie Mercury’s voices in the last of the rave scenes. It made that scene slightly more intense. The outro music was beautiful.
My only problem with the film was I knew too much about the filmmaker’s back story. I wondered how I would have experienced the movie, if I hadn’t known that her father was dead. That the idea for the film came from going through old footage taken of her by her dad.
We know that the father is sad/depressed. You can see it on his face. His refusal to answer his daughter’s question of how he saw his life turning out when he was her age, underscores his shame about his place in life. The sad look he gives the group of tourists as they sing for his birthday.
When we see him run into the surf and later Sophie is locked out of her room, the viewer assumes he is committing suicide. It was a relief to see him lying on the bed sleeping when the attendant let her into the room. I suppose the scene at the surf and the final scene where he travels down an empty hall to the doors that open onto the rave are enough to indicated what happened to the character of the father. Still I wish I had known less about the movie to get an unbiased feel for it.



I forgot the opening line.


The Treasure of the Sierra Madre - 1948

Directed by John Huston

Written by John Huston
Based on the novel by B. Traven

Starring Humphrey Bogart, Walter Huston, Tim Holt & Bruce Bennett

A lot of life, I've found, is a matter of balance. Go around and trust everyone, and everything you hear people say, then you'll end up being conned, stolen from and misinformed - just as Fred C. Dobbs (Humphrey Bogart) and Bob Curtin (Tim Holt) are, getting fooled into doing work for Pat McCormick (Barton MacLane) during the first section of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre. They go without getting paid - trusting in his manner that he was a principled man. Conversely, trust nobody and believe nothing people say and you'll end up with paranoia, conflict and be a nervous wreck your whole life - just as Fred C. Dobbs does when gold fever starts to eat it's way into his mind, and he starts to suspect that his workmates, Bob and Howard (Walter Huston), are going to cheat him in some way after the three have gathered enough placer gold to be worth a small fortune to them. Neither extreme is good, and Sierra Madre explores that variable in human nature that can affect our ability to trust, cooperate and deal with each other as respectable human beings. It's a harsh dog eat dog world, but there has to be a limit to that somewhere along the line, lest we live as ravenous, violent animals.

I had a dream once that I was at the beach, wading out into the shallows, and kept on finding big gold bars just beneath the waves. I still remember it because of how excited I'd got in the dream, and how that excitement was with me the moment I woke up - before I realised I'd been dreaming, and had to come crashing down to earth. There's nothing that represents wealth more than gold does - finding the valuable metal is synonymous with the lotteries we see at the start of this film. For people, it leads to a kind of delirium. When gold was found in Coloma, California in 1848, the papers reported that it ďset the public mind almost on the highway to insanity.Ē In Sierra Madre we see the hard work and resilience needed to go where it is, and deal with the landscape along with other people - of being prepared, having someone experienced with you, and having the right equipment. We see the dangers, the toil, and the rewards of doing what our three main characters do - and we also see that 'highway to insanity' in the case of one of them.

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre is one of the first Hollywood films to have gone off on location in another country for the sake of authenticity - in this case Durango and Tampico, Mexico. It aids the film, and for some reason I kept thinking of Wages of Fear, which has a similar look to this, and follows many of the same themes - over and over again I'd think back to that French/Italian classic that came along 5 years after this. I was also really surprised by how battered, beaten and ugly Humphrey Bogart allowed himself to look in this movie. At some stages, with beard and furrowed brow, he reminded me of a rat - his toothy grimace and filthy face expressing the poisonous paranoia he was experiencing. It was Walter Huston who won a Best Actor Oscar though, for his performance as the much wiser Howard - swooping in like an angel to save a native kid, and becoming rather philosophical about the whole adventure and where it takes him. Although the film itself would miss out on a Best Picture win despite being nominated, it won for Best Director (John Huston) and Best Screenplay (John Huston) - which are wins people usually say indicate that it should have won Best Picture (that went to Laurence Olivier's Hamlet.)

Anyway, I'm happy to have finally (finally) seen this classic - it was one of the last true classics I hadn't seen yet (I'm probably exaggerating, there must be plenty more) and removes the great big void which would stare at me whenever the film came up in discussions or in what I was reading. I thought it would be more of an adventure - but it turned out to be something of a Western. Instead of action, I was really happy to see that this wanted to say something about being human, and examine certain personality traits. It explored how relationships can change as circumstances change, and how people can turn against each other when stakes are raised. It looked at what trusting too much and what not trusting at all leads to. We get plenty of action with Mexican bandits, including the famous line "Badges? We ain't got no badges. We don't need no badges! I don't have to show you any stinkin' badges!" - which (despite never having seen the film) I'd often use, always making the mistake of saying "We don't need no stinkin' badges!" - which is not what's said in the film if you want to be exact.

I'd also like to add, in the film's favour, the fact that it surprised me so often - especially in how everything ended up, which I won't go into in detail. Bogart dominates most of it, really willing to be, if not the bad guy (they were the bandit Mexicans - and I'm glad they were offset by the Federales), the guy who stoops to begging, violence and general disrespect. You see people like him still today - paranoid, needy, easily triggered into violent reactions, loud, cunning and just generally full of their "Oh, I know what's going on here!" pronouncements of mistaken finger-pointing. Fred Dobbs must have had that hidden deep within him right from the beginning, with the gold fever bringing it out - and it was adventurous for Bogart to play such a role. It's that character my mind goes to whenever I think about the film now. He was mentally ill by the end, and I have to admit that this kind of madness fascinates me. Is it something the wealthy suffer from in general? A 'get away from my fortune' kind of instinct? Such are the questions posed when looking at this side of humanity, and that's what I enjoyed most about this film. How it examined us.




A Man for All Seasons—Rewatch
This is a great screenplay. The question is: is this a great movie?
I don’t know, how to answer that. It won Best Picture at the Oscars. That’s one metric.
But is not a visually adventurous movie. It is very formal, almost staid. Is that a choice or a failing? It may be that Fred Zinneman was trying to evoke, what was happening to Sir Thomas More’s world. Becoming ever more restrictive as his fate becomes inevitable. This is the director, who gave us one of the most famous scenes of passion in movies; Deborah Kerr and Burt Lancaster embracing on the sand as the waves crash over them. So, it was not through a lack on the filmmaker’s part. It was a definite choice.
The score…is there a score? I really don’t remember it. If there was one it was so seamless that I did not even notice it. Which is I like in some movies. I really liked the movie Educating Rita. But the score was that annoying, overblown, classical style from the Eighties. I find movies that use that style unbearable. I have never seen Educating Rita twice because of that score. So, better one that is inobtrusive.
The acting is wonderful. Paul Scofield was reprising the role he had already been playing in the West End. A time or two this was evident. A time or two it was a little too stagy. But overall masterful. The supporting actors are marvelous. Leo McKern really holds the audience as Cromwell. John Hurt is never too obvious a villain as Richard Rich. He lets the dialogue and his costume tell his story and reveal his character. But the characters are foils for Sir Thomas and are all part of an obvious structure. Is the structure too obvious?
We find Sir Thomas, a man of impeccable character. Everyone else is scrambling to save themselves in the dangerous court of Henry the VIII. This includes Sir Thomas. He chooses retirement and silence as his life raft, which is soon overwhelmed by the demands of the state in the person of King Henry and his righthand Cromwell. The structure reveals the methods each person takes to secure their berth on the ship of state. But as the afterward informs us, only the most venal characters win. Richard Rich is the only one who dies after a prosperous life in his bed.
It is a movie that speaks to me. But you may be surprised at what it says to me. My initial thought when thinking back on previous viewings is that Sir Thomas More may be autistic. Who else would be so married to their idea of God and the afterlife that they would allow themselves to be martyred. Being autistic means you come clashing against the fuzzy thinking and very mutable feelings of others while your own course feels quite set. The other idea, I had was that we are living through a similar time. Institution that were once bastions of liberal humanism have become overwhelmed by left wing notions that are often ludicrous, yet are put forward as a gospel that you must accept.
Whether it is great or not it is certainly timely.



Trouble with a capital "T"
@beelzebubble Good review and not because I liked the movie but because it was an interesting read

The scoreÖis there a score? I really donít remember it. If there was one it was so seamless that I did not even notice it. Which is I like in some movies. I really liked the movie Educating Rita. But the score was that annoying, overblown, classical style from the Eighties. I find movies that use that style unbearable. I have never seen Educating Rita twice because of that score. So, better one that is inobtrusive.
I don't remember the score either which like you said is a plus as it moved the film and it's emotions without being obtrusive.

But you may be surprised at what it says to me. My initial thought when thinking back on previous viewings is that Sir Thomas More may be autistic. Who else would be so married to their idea of God and the afterlife that they would allow themselves to be martyred. Being autistic means you come clashing against the fuzzy thinking and very mutable feelings of others while your own course feels quite set.
Very interesting thought. I wouldn't have considered that but yes he seems like he might be autistic, a lot of really intelligent people tend towards that. If you don't mind me asking do you know someone who is autistic, is that why you feel Sir Thomas More was?


***The last part of your review....We're suppose to keep political stuff off of MoFo. I know Yoda doesn't like it as it can cause problems and it has no place in an HoF anyway.



@beelzebubble

Very interesting thought. I wouldn't have considered that but yes he seems like he might be autistic, a lot of really intelligent people tend towards that. If you don't mind me asking do you know someone who is autistic, is that why you feel Sir Thomas More was?
.
I was recently diagnosed with Autism 1 which used to be called Aspergerís Syndrome. I decided to get a diagnosis after my friend did. I have a feeling most of my friends are autistic. I really relate to the stubbornness and fixed ideas. I also see it a lot in other autistic people whether very intelligent or not.



Trouble with a capital "T"
I was recently diagnosed with Autism 1 which used to be called Aspergerís Syndrome. I decided to get a diagnosis after my friend did. I have a feeling most of my friends are autistic. I really relate to the stubbornness and fixed ideas. I also see it a lot in other autistic people whether very intelligent or not.
Thanks. I don't know much about it...but I believe I read once that people think Einstein might have been autistic of some type or another. If so you are in good company



I forgot the opening line.


The Bank Job - 2008

Directed by Roger Donaldson

Written by Dick Clement & Ian La Frenais

Starring Jason Statham, Saffron Burrows & Richard Lintern

Whenever I'm informed that I'm about to watch a film "based on a true story" I kind of go into a defensive "well then, I'm not going to believe one single thing I see" mode. It's not that I think I'm about to watch unadulterated lies - it's just that you never know at what point artistic license is about to kick in. Even the most faithful of films have to use it. Well, The Bank Job is what I'd call medium level as far as all that is concerned. If you know the true story of the 1971 burglary of Lloyds Bank safety deposit boxes in Baker Street, you'll still be in for plenty of surprises as far as the film is concerned. It adopts all of the rumours concerning the involvement of MI5, compromising photos of Princess Margaret, and evidence of ministerial misconduct as fact, and adds a dose of crime kingpin/crooked police drama for good measure. The tunnel and the bit with the walkie-talkies being overheard are the incontrovertible facts - and the film faithfully recreates the look of the street-corner bank, Chicken Inn store and Le Sac premises from which the tunneling was done.

Apart from Jason Statham, kind of typecast as the kind of person who is a mechanic as well as pulling off heists, there weren't many recognizable faces in this. Saffron Burrows might best be known as the lead in Deep Blue Sea - a film I'm not sure I've seen from start to finish. Richard Lintern could possibly be the most British-looking person alive (and he likewise appears in very British productions.) I knew I'd seen Stephen Campbell Moore somewhere before - and it's probably from History Boys. Daniel Mays I've seen plenty of times (for example, Rogue One : A Star Wars Story), but isn't a huge star. They really just depended on Statham as far as star power is concerned - and fair enough, that did the job. Did everyone who watched this spot Mick Jagger? Yeah, he's in this too - a cameo spot as one of the bank employees in charge of the vault. Very cheeky, and very hard to spot unless you're really on the ball. I was hoping John Lennon (Alan Swoffer) would get a line, but he's just a background historical figure (whoever plays Yoko doesn't even appear as uncredited anywhere.)

So, the various parts were straightforward, and the movie depended chiefly on it's screenplay - written in part by Dick Clement, an old hand as far as British drama goes, and very expert in every way possible. The other writer was his long-time partner Ian La Frenais - they were both in their 70s when writing this, but everything they lay out is sharp and well organized. They were both still working up until 2017, updating Porridge - a series they'd worked on in the 1970s. Perhaps it's good to have people who clearly remember the 1970s make a film which takes place in that decade. Director Roger Donaldson was likewise quite old for this kind of caper - Donaldson is an Australian filmmaker who made a few films in New Zealand before making The Bounty in England and graduating to the U.S. with Marie in 1985. He was the director of Cocktail, which I feel obliged to apologize for (I actually saw that at the movies way back in '88.) He's well known for the likes of Species (1995), Dante's Peak (1997) and Thirteen Days (2000) - the latter of which is his best film as far as I'm concerned. He directs The Bank Job in very competent fashion, and makes great use of what he was given.

So, the only other comments I have to exemplify it's best features is that 1970s period it successfully captures with it's art direction and production design. It's not perfect, but few are - and this one at least gave me the feeling of being back in the '70s. Other than that, it's sympathetic portrayal of the burglars had me on their side and cheering for them - not that I gave them much hope, although I have to add that I didn't know what had really happened while watching the film. Apparently a couple of them were never identified, but most were caught and got prison sentences ranging from eight to twelve years in length. Don't take that as a spoiler - this movie gets very creative as far as what really happened after the theft is concerned. If you want to find out all of the absolute facts - well, that file is closed until the year 2071. I'll have to improve my health if I hope to find out. The movie is simply a very well organized heist thriller and period piece, with secret agent/MI5 business and political intrigue weaved into it's tapestry. I never knew there was a Michael X (Peter de Jersey) - but now I do.

Just a note about the whole Michael X part of the story - he was an interesting figure. A revolutionary and civil rights activist in 1960s London. We see the famous instance of him putting a slave collar on businessman Marvin Brown (or, more precisely, two of his followers did as Michael X allegedly threatened him and tried to extort money.) I have a feeling there's more to that story. The North London headquarters for his movement mysteriously burned down, and Michael X fled to his native Trinidad and Tobago in February 1971. He was often aided by John Lennon (he'd bail him out when Michael was arrested), but the commune he started overseas also burned down - and when the fire was investigated two dead bodies were found. Michael X was tried for murdering one of them, ultimately convicted and executed. In The Bank Job we see him murder Gale Benson (Hattie Morahan) with a machete - she's revealed as a spy. The whole saga is another interesting historical chapter that The Bank Job introduces to a wider audience that may never otherwise have heard of these people. In the film, it's MI5 who burn Michael X's commune down - and I'm pretty sure it's the authorities who gutted his headquarters in London.

I wasn't expecting much from The Bank Job, but it turned out to be a better film than I expected to see - which, because Statham was leading a threadbare cast, I assumed would be more geared to action than intrigue and real historical events. Obviously there has been enormous liberties taken as far as speculation and artistic license is concerned, but the movie benefits by bringing MI5 and assorted other historical figures into the picture. We'd like to believe it's all true - and who knows, some of it might be, considering that there are undisclosed facts pertaining to what happened being locked away for so long. Probably not though. Anyway, heists are always fun, and Roger Donaldson gets a lot of value from what he was given to work with - mostly thanks to a no-nonsense screenplay. It knows just when to add the odd plague crypt or pair of dirty knickers into the narrative for fun - but not too much fun. A very nice addition to the heist genre, and an enjoyable trip back to '70s London. The only thing it lacks is a great cast and the need for really strong performances.




I forgot the opening line.
As a side note, I'm not sure there's something like that supper cutting torch which to me looked like it had a bunch of sparklers packed in a tube, but what do I know about cutting torches?
Thermic lances are awesome - and quite real. The business end reaches temperatures of a staggering 4,400 degrees C (8,000 degrees F) - hot enough to melt concrete. You could use one to open a safe, but it would burn and melt everything inside the safe as well as the safe itself. The real-life robbers tried using one, but unlike in the film it still didn't succeed - so they blasted the floor of the vault with explosives.



Now I have never seen a Jason Statham movie before and I have one question. Why is this ordinary looking guy, who is not the greatest actor and not that charismatic a movie star? I donít get it. He does have a good voice. But other than that, I donít get it.
A good question. I agree about the voice, and I think he has the right balance of looking like a tough guy, but a loveable tough guy - while also having the physical ability his Chinese martial arts, kickboxing, karate, football and diving gave him. Other than that, it seems luck simply threw him into Guy Ritchie's path and the rest was history. But he just might be a robot sent by extraterrestrials to study our movie-making industry - I've never seen him emote very much. He's just a really lucky average Joe.



Trouble with a capital "T"
Thermic lances are awesome - and quite real. The business end reaches temperatures of a staggering 4,400 degrees C (8,000 degrees F) - hot enough to melt concrete....
That's wild! I had no idea that was a real thing.



The Treasure of the Sierra Madre



Not sure how many times I've seen this before, at least twice but not many. It's the type of film that when I see it nominated I'm not excited, but when I put it on the joy of watching it comes back to me. It was definitely time to see it again.

I forgot what a lowlife Dobbs is and you can see it right off the bat. I get that he eventually goes mad but it was always within his character. I loved the other 2 main characters with Walter Huston being especially great. This was the first time I watched knowing that John Huston played the rich man in the beginning and Robert Blake the kid selling lottery tickets. Very cool! My favorite parts were actually the first 20 minutes and the latter scenes in the villages, rather than the scenes of the men on the mountain, but it's all good. I remembered it as more of an adventure film than it is, and I think the typical film would've gone that route. Not quite a huge favorite but it's a great watch that deserves it's classic status.




Trouble with a capital "T"
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
I forgot what a lowlife Dobbs is and you can see it right off the bat. I get that he eventually goes mad but it was always within his character.
That's exactly what I saw this time around. I had previously thought that Dobbs was just a regular joe and gold lust drove him crazy, but like you said the seeds were already there...I think that shows a well thought out and written script, and a great director too, both same man, John Huston. One of my favorite directors.