The Personal Recommendation Hall of Fame II


Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas was my recommendation for ya, Usual. The first time I saw it at the theaters, I felt like I was tripping for a few hours after. Crazy film and yeah, Del Torro does not get even love for what he did in that one.

Downfall is on my watchlist.
What to do if you find yourself stuck with no hope of rescue:
Consider yourself lucky that life has been good to you so far. Alternatively, if life hasn't been good to you so far, which given your present circumstances seems more likely, consider yourself lucky that it won't be troubling you much longer.

That Tobe Maguire though....I guess I just don't like his face....
They made him look even more goofy in Fear and Loathing with that hairdo. Even so, I thought that was the funniest part of the movie with Depp talking to himself out loud, maybe? Their trip through "bat country" is one of those scenes I can watch over and over and end up laughing every time.

Downfall was really good.

Saw Quills once, on the Big Screen. It was only showing at one theater in town, kind of an indie theater downtown. Wasn't my idea but a new gf wanted to see it so...didn't want to argue at that stage of the relationship. Ended up liking it more than her and I had no idea who the Marquis de Sade was yet. Took me a few more years to see Salo (something I still regret) otherwise I may have been the one recommending it. I should watch it again just to see how much I really liked it or if I was just trying too hard to impress.

Just watched Fight Club recently, second go with it. Hasn't moved up or down. Not one of Finchers best, imo. There's something about Ed Norton...guess I don't like his face but, damn, he's a solid actor!

28 days...6 hours...42 minutes...12 seconds
The Hustler

I can count the number of Paul Newman films I've seen on one finger....yup. Cars...the animated Pixar film. I've seen bits and pieces of Cool Hand Luke and Butch Cassidy, but not the ENTIRE piece. So this is my first real entry into the performance of Paul Newman. Crazy, I know.

Welp, in short, it was great. I'll probably check out The Color of Money soon too.

The Hustlin' business is dangerous and Fast Eddie knows a thing or two about that. He has the skill but his arrogance gets in the way sometimes. I thought the film was surprisingly well-paced for a movie about billiards that clocks in over 2hrs. It helps that Newman was the central character, making the film feel as smooth as he is.

Gleason was another stand-out that made sure Newman wasn't too bright of a shining star. They complimented each other rather well. The black and white cinematography captured the dark underbelly of gambling perfectly and the jazz tunes that play throughout had me tapping my feet.

A great choice and yes...I shall check out more Newman films.
"A laugh can be a very powerful thing. Why, sometimes in life, it's the only weapon we have."

Suspect's Reviews

The thing isolated becomes incomprehensible
Paper Moon (1973)

I expected this to go through a very different route, and in a way, I wish it got a bit deeper and darker, but I understand the director's vision.
Tatum O'Neal is the best thing about this, by far. She has this sweet girl look but ends up being so rough and resourceful, beating Moze at his own game! Her father, Ryan O'Neal, is ok though nothing extraordinary. I did love the chemistry between them, though.
The rest of the cast is ok. Trixie annoyed me, but I guess that was the point.

The story is quite linear and the ending is quite predictable once you realize the kid actually likes being with Moze. The fact that she never had any father figure probably helped too.
I had some problems with the pacing though as I felt this dragged quite a bit, especially during the second half.

It's quite a good film, and I'm glad I watched it.


seven samurai

this was probably the biggest movie i'd never seen before. i really don't have anything interesting to add to the conversation around this movie because it's all been said, but it's obviously a very good movie and kurosawa is clearly a master of the craft of filmmaking. i've never seen a movie find so many unique angles to shoot one scene without calling attention to it. i love how methodically it establishes its narrative and follows it through. given the film's reputation, i was expecting some moment of transcendence that never really came for me, but that's alright because at it's core it's just a movie that has everything you want in a movie tackling all the universal themes of humanity and whatnot in an entertaining way.

i do have a couple complaints that are relatively minor, but i'll bring them up in the interest of not repeating the same platitudes about how brilliant this movie is. for one thing, the last line is a bit insipid. it's a fine sentiment, but also a tiresome cliche that's really only defensible if the preceding film takes some interesting approach to realizing it. here it just feels tacked on. kurosawa addresses a number of philosophical questions throughout the film, but that's not one he seemed especially interested in exploring beyond the cursory level inherent in any film featuring war and death, so it's weird to suddenly make it the singular thought you'd like the audience to leave with. maybe it'd have registered more strongly in 1954, but it's not like there hadn't already been movies dealing with the cost of war. my only other complaint is toshiro mifune. i love him in yojimbo and i like some of what he's doing here, but his overacting is a bit much at times and doesn't always match the tenor of the film. i just wanted to tell him to tone it back at times because he's already one of the most naturally magnetic performers there ever was, not that i can't sometimes appreciate the rawness of his obnoxious physicality or willingness to bare his ass. otherwise i thought all the acting was quite good, particularly from takashi shimura. good movie imo.

Most Biblical movies were long If I Recall.
seen A Clockwork Orange. In all honesty, the movie was weird and silly

The thing isolated becomes incomprehensible
Five Easy Pieces (1970)

I liked this so much more than I thought I would.

I get why would someone pick something like this for me, and the truth is that I related more to Robert than what's expectable. It's not only the fact that I'm a musician too but because I went through a similar period where I stopped feeling anything, and I stopped having pleasure in what I did. I can tell this film explores that pretty damn well, including the fact that all these choices he makes are very difficult not to make.
My guess is that growing up in a family like that, he simply couldn't take the pressure anymore and he ran away. He started doing a "brainless" job with no direct consequences on him, dating a girl who had no self-esteem so she wouldn't ask him anything in return, everything to stop having people expect something perfect from him. The problem is that those choices are toxic and take you nowhere and it's no wonder he's struggling with them three years after that, so I totally understood when he couldn't take it anymore and just ran away again. I'm guessing to wherever he went, he just restarted the cycle of bad options, because there's simply no easy way out.

Nicholson does a tremendous job portraying a man like this and the film is really all about him. The rest of the characters are not shown any type of growth but they're not supposed to because they're just tools for him to tell his story. I think that I felt exactly the same he did for any of them because they are in some way archetypes to people who I met in my life. And that goes all to say how perfect his performance was.
I also liked how gritty was the whole direction and cinematography. It perfectly adapts to the theme of the film. And the constant juxtaposition of country music with classical music is simply amazing as if the whole personality of the main character was being disputed by two worlds seemingly impossible to combine.

I had some problems with the way he supposedly started liking Catherine because everything felt a bit rushed but I have to remind myself that she was only a tool to show his reaction and to explore his struggle. But then again, it distracted me from the main point, so I guess it could have been done better, though I don't know exactly how. I also didn't care for the section with the lesbians taking a ride, it really didn't add anything to the film. It was not long enough to hurt the pacing but still... The nurse is also not essential and I'm glad the storyline with Bobby's sister was kept to a minimum.
Of course, it's easy to forget those shortcomings once that last scene comes. Damn, it hit me like a ton of bricks...

As I write this, I'm thinking more and more about the film, and I'm liking it more and more, so thank you to whoever picked this.


The thing isolated becomes incomprehensible
The Birds, the Bees and the Italians (1966)

Another big surprise!

A 3-part sex comedy revolving around the high class of a city in Italy.
My favourite part of this is the rhythm with which everything happens. The soundtrack is always upbeat, people walk fast, talk fast and loudly, and lots of things happen in short periods of time. That really helps to enjoy the film cause the atmosphere created is of such happiness and fun that every joke works naturally.
The Doctor is probably my favourite character, and it's him who pretty much carries the pacing of the whole first story. He appears less during the rest of the film but when he does, he always dominates the screen.
I liked how theatrical the whole thing was too. That ending deserved curtains down and a round of applause!
There's not really much else to say, cause this one is more to enjoy than to analyze!

Nice pick!


cricket's Avatar
Registered User
Inmate has watched The Descent and sent his ballot as well. He will post his thoughts in the next couple days. Meanwhile, I'll be working on putting the results together as time allows. I'm on call all weekend so don't expect much!