Cobpyth's Film Reviews

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Great to see another fan of Sweet Smell of Success.
It was already on my watchlist for a very long time, but seeing it on your list was the final push I needed to actually give it a shot, so thank you for that.



I don't care for The Searchers. I don't like Westerns and I don't like John Wayne. That said, it looks beautiful, which is strange for a Western.
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5-time MoFo Award winner.



I don't care for The Searchers. I don't like Westerns and I don't like John Wayne. That said, it looks beautiful, which is strange for a Western.
What about spaghetti westerns?



The Searchers is a brilliant film that I don't see get much praise around here, I absolutely love it. One of my favourite Westerns, but also one of my favourites overall, I think some people don't truelly understand the full beauty of the film upon a first viewing and think it needs to be viewed a couple of times to fully understand the layers and themes displayed. John Wayne's character is one of the best troubled individuals displayed on screen, filled with racism that drives the main plot, the last scenes in particularly are fantastic and a great reflection of his character and the journey he has undergone throughout the film.

The only bit I don't like is the stupid 'comic relief' scenes, as you describe them. Although like you also mentioned I understood they were included to give a finer balance to viewers who may have found some of the other scenes more disturbing, so I don't let these scenes bother me too much.

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Life as a shorty shouldn't be so rough
Do you mean do I like them or do I think they look beautiful? Doesn't really matter because the answer is "no" to both.
You should see The Great Silence. It really is beautiful. The snowy scenery is a thing to behold.



What about spaghetti westerns?
Now, those are the real deal.

I generally find the John Ford style westerns boring, it was Akira Kurosawa who developed the western into a satisfactory style of film, with his samurai movies. Later on Sergio Leone remade these movies into proper westerns and there came the good stuff:

Classic westerns:

The Searchers

Rio Bravo


Spaghetti westerns:

Once Upon a Time in the West

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
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The Searchers is a brilliant film that I don't see get much praise around here, I absolutely love it. One of my favourite Westerns, but also one of my favourites overall, I think some people don't truelly understand the full beauty of the film upon a first viewing and think it needs to be viewed a couple of times to fully understand the layers and themes displayed.
That applies to many films. To give a definitive judgment of many films one needs to watch it several times. That's one of the reasons why it is impossible for a film buff to have a satisfactory level of knowledge of the vast world of film.



Reviews of the day:

Mean Streets (1973)

Martin Scorsese is one of my favorite directors, but there are still some of his films that I didn't watch. His first real classic, Mean Streets, is the eleventh movie I saw from this cinematic mastermind.

The film is mainly a rough tale about low life Italian gangsters and the new York neighborhood they live in. It centers around the character Charlie (played by Harvey Keitel) and his issues with guilt and the choice between his friends and his rich uncle.
In the first scene we see him praying in church, asking for redemption, but he can't find it there. You only find it on the streets... From then on we see Charlie often looking for punishment in the form of fire, which symbolizes hell.
Charlie's best friend, Johnny Boy (awesomely portrayed by De Niro) is a self destructive troublemaker with a lot of debts who doesn't seem to care about anything. His life becomes more complicated when his amount of creditors rise and when one of them becomes very impatient.
Meanwhile Charlie is asked by his uncle to not get involved with Johnny and his niece, Teresa (his epileptic secret girlfriend), because he is bad influence and because "honorable men go with honorable men".
Although he initially tries to follow the advice of his uncle, he ends up helping Johnny and undergo the consequences.

This gangster story is told in a "typically Scorsese" stylish and rock'n roll way with a great soundtrack and some very cool scenes. My favorite one was the famous pool fight scene. That was a scene full of adrenalin and testosteron, filmed in a continuous 'hand camera' way. AWESOME stuff!
I rate this movie a very well deserved:















Reviews of the day:

The Hustler (1961)

This movie was on my watchlist for a very long time and I finally saw it yesterday night. It didn't disappoint! Paul Newman was fantastic as Fast Eddie Felson and the side characters were also unbelievably interesting. There is George C. Scott as the frightening top gambler Bert Gordon, Jackie Gleason as the cool pool player Minnesota Fats and Piper Laurie as the alcoholic and self-destructive love interest. Together they create firework on the screen!

Fat Eddie is a very talented pool player and a hustler. Together with his partner, Findley, they go to pool bars and try to win a lot of money by tricking people into betting high against Eddie.
When he hears about Minnesota Fats, the best pool player in the country, he wants to beat him and challenges him in his own bar. After some time he has a profit of 18000 dollars, but his pride and his "lack of character" makes him lose everything at the end of the 30 hours game. After this experience he flees away from his partner and meets a girl, named Sarah. She's clearly an alcoholic, but he doesn't mind and moves in with her. When his old partner finds him, he rejects his offer to go back on the road, but he starts to become obsessed with the thought of beating Minnesota Fats.
After he meets Bert Gordon, who tells Eddie he's a born loser, and rejects his offer to work for him, he gets into trouble in another obscure pool bar, after hustling a guy, and he ends up with broken thumbs.
He starts to grow much closer to Sarah during his rehabilitation and when he's cured, he accepts Gordon's offer to go on the road with him and win money. From that moment on, the darkest themes of the film begin to surface...

This dark story about the underworld of pool and street gambling is shown with some beautiful black and white cinematography and is accompanied by an alarming jazz tune.
This movie is more than just a story about pool. It's a character study of a neurotic man and the dark mess he's getting himself into. It also takes the time to develop the most important side characters, so we can also see everything from their point of view. I rate this movie:

+












Mean Streets is great and I would give it a similar rating, and then The Hustler is a film that I want to see and think I would really like, Paul Newman is a great actor and I enjoy most of his films.



The Hustler is a fantastic film, and yes, Newman is great, especially when up against Jackie Gleason. Near made my Top 100.

Not keen on the follow up The Colour Of Money though.
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Originally Posted by doubledenim
Garbage bag people fighting hippy love babies.

Bots gotta be bottin'



Daniel, If you like Paul Newman, you really should give it a try. It's one of his best performances!

The Color of Money (1986)

25 years after The Hustler, Paul Newman entrusted Martin Scorsese with the assignment of directing a kind of 'sequel' to The Hustler. Although, it's not really a sequel, because it doesn't really build further on the storyline of the original film. It only uses the character of Fat Eddie and a very minor black character again. It is, however, a MUST, in my opinion, to watch The Hustler first, because it gives the character of Fat Eddie way more depth and makes you understand his actions much better.

The film was not as intense and deep as The Hustler, but it certainly had its own qualities. For instance, the cinematography and the directing were AWESOME (what else did you expect from Scorsese?) and some of the scenes really were sweeter than sweets. The film also had a cool rock'n roll vibe!

The film features Paul Newman again as Fast Eddie and Tom Cruise as Vincent Lauria, a very talented and young pool player, that Eddie discovers in one of the bars where he's selling booze.
He takes Vincent and his girlfriend on the road to hustle people and Eddie recognizes himself in Vincent sometimes and tries to avoid that Vincent makes the same mistakes as he did.
Because of his love for the game and because he never had the chance to really become someone very important (you have to see the Hustler to understand that dimension) in the world of pool, although he had the talent, his hunger for succes starts to take over and after he's beaten by another hustler, he decides to get back in the game!
He leaves Vincent and his girlfriend alone, telling them he can't learn them anything else, and he starts hustling himself again. When he goes to a big pool tournament in Atlantic City, after he perfected his skills again, he once again meets his former pupil, who is now a full-blown hustler himself.

I enjoyed this movie a lot and it had some really interesting scenes both visually and dialogue wise.
My favorite visual scene was probably the mirror ball scene in the end and my favorite dialogue scene was when Paul Newman told Vincent's girlfriend to stop flirting with him, because they are partners. While thinking about the movie, I keep raking up great moments. I enjoyed it a lot! My rating for this movie:

(-)














Not keen on the follow up The Colour Of Money though.
It's a much lighter movie than The Hustler and the story is indeed not as good and intense, but I couldn't hold myself from enjoying its exuberance and its coolness.



Hustler and Color Of Money are both great films. I actually find myself enjoying Color Of Money a bit more and I think it is because of Newman and Cruise's banter. There interaction is great and there really isn't a relationship that compares to that in the Hustler in my opinion. I also love the scene with Newman and Whitaker, one of my favorite and most memorable scenes in any film



That's indeed a great scene!

Reviews of the day:

Porco Rosso (1992)

It's my fourth Miyazaki movie and I was once again pleased very much!
The main characters, Porco, is one of the most interesting I've ever seen in an animated picture and the young female character, Fio, is certainly one of the most likable!

It's an original story that takes place in the 20s/30s about an extremely cool, chain smoking, (literally) pig-headed fighter pilot, who lives on a deserted island and earns his money as a bounty hunter by hunting air pirats. He seems to be a former human pilot in the Italian army, but he became a pig when he left his army friends alone in a deadly air battle, with Porco as the only survivor. His traumatizing past and his feelings of guilt made him a pure cynic (his style makes me think of Rick Blain in Casablanca). His piggish appearance is in my opinion a metaphor for his self image.
Despite the fact that the Italian army wants to arrest him for desertion, he goes to Milan when his plane seems broken and when it's shot to pieces by an American rival pilot during the trip.
There he meets a young girl, named Fio, who is a plane engineer. At first he doesn't want her to repair his plane because she's just a girl, but later he starts to acknowledge her qualities.
When he returns from Italy with Fio, he gets into trouble when the air pirats decide to take revenge for every time he defeated them...

Besides the characters, I was also a big fan of the visuals and the imaginative locations. For example the Hotel Adriano in the middle of the sea and the deserted home island from Porco were truly fantastic.
The film was great and I enjoyed it a lot. The only remark I have, is that it's a little too short. The characters and the story have so much potential that the film could go on for another half hour without getting boring.
I rate this movie:

+














Give me all of your candy!
This actually sounds like a good movie for me to check out to get into this genre. Great write-up! Love the medley of pictures you use in your posts.



Thanks for the nice words, fuze!

Eraserhead (1977)

Lynch's infamous surrealistic film about a strange man with a strange haircut in a dark, industrialized world is most certainly one of the oddest movies ever made.

The extremely simplified plot:

When Henry visits his girlfriend, Mary, and his parents-in-law, they tell him that Mary was pregnant and had a premature baby and that they have to marry.
After they married, Mary has a breakdown because of the (deformed) baby and leaves Henry alone with "it"...

There are a lot of interpretations of this film. Nobody really knows for sure what David Lynch actually meant with characters like "the man in the planet" or the "lady in the radiator". Lynch himself describes the movie as a "dream of dark and troubling things".
I personally see it as a nightmarish tale with a lot of atmosphere and some unbelievably beautiful scenes! When placing myself inside Lynch's dark dreamworld, I experienced the man inside the planet as a kind of higher force who's pulling the strings and the lady in the radiator as the bright spot in this darkness.
Although I can't explain everything that happens in it, I got carried away by the film's wonderful black and white cinematography and its odd world and characters. I liked it and I will watch this again for sure!
I don't really like to give a rating to this one, but I'll try anyway. At this very moment, I rate this film:

















Reviews of the day:

True Romance (1993)

This film is FUN! The dialogue was sometimes just plain awesome and because of that some scenes were pure cinematic firework. I'm talking about three scenes in particular. The fight between Drexl and Clarence, the scene between Hopper's character and Walker's and ofcourse the fight between Gandolfini's character and Alabama.
The cast of this movie is also amazing. It has big stars like Gary Oldman, Brad Pitt, Samuel L. Jackson (very shortly), Christopher Walken, James Gandolfini, Dennis Hopper and Chris Penn in supporting roles. Every actor did a great performance and the film stayed very good popcorn cinema untill the very ending!

It tells the story about Clarence, a guy who works in a comic store and is a big admirer of Elvis! Sometimes when he's alone, he hears him talking to him and giving him advice. On his birthday, he goes watching three kung fu movies in a row and bumps into Alabama, a call girl who's hired by his boss as a present for Clarence, but he isn't aware of that in the beginning. They have a great night untill she tells him the truth after they made love. She starts to cry and confesses her love for him. Clarence loves the girl too, because of the many similarities between them and they decide to marry eachother.
Clarence can't live with the thought of Alabama still being the possesion of a pimp, named Drexl and he decides to kill him. After a big fight he finally succeeds and runs away with the suitcase that should contain Alabama's clothes. When he arrives at home, they discover that the suitcase is actually filled with a lot of coke. They decide to go on a trip to L.A. to sell it, so they can fly away to a happy life together without any financial worries.
While being hunted by the Sicilian mob, they start their dangerous journey to happiness...

I think Tony Scott did a really good job with turning the script into a movie and although his directing style is not as refined as Tarantino's, it fitted the story very well! It may not be the smartest movie I've ever seen, but it certainly was an entertaining piece of filmmaking, so I rate this movie:

(-)