The Personal Recommendation Hall of Fame II

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I haven’t seen All About My Mother, I may have to check it out.

I’ve seen 3 other Almodóvar films - Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!, The Skin I Live In, and Pain and Glory. I don’t like Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! but of course love The Skin I Live In and really liked Pain and Glory.



While I think I agree with the first half, I definitely disagree with the last part. I haven't seen the film in quite awhile, but the thing I remember most is that it is rife with social commentary and specifically about addressing prejudice. I recall Fassbender's framing and overall use of mise-en-scčne being very purposeful, and it was nearly as important as the dialogue itself to understanding the film, which wouldn't really support a documentary-like approach to the subject matter.

But like I said, I don't remember very much about the film itself. I have always liked that the German title, Angst essen Seele auf, is grammatically incorrect, mirroring Ali's imperfect speech.
I agree with what you're saying...maybe I'm not explaining my thoughts well? It's been known to happen!

I agree the film looks at prejudice but in a more balanced way than the typical, socially correct modern American film would've done.

Fassbinder has German citizens believing falsehoods about the immigrant Arab workers, but he balances that by showing that the Arab workers also have their own falsehoods about the Germans. We're told how horrible the working conditions are for the Arab immigrant workers, but we see Ali at his mechanic's job with Germans, and it doesn't look all that horrible, in fact they look like they all get along (from what we can tell).

If anything I'd say Fassbinder is saying both the Germans and the immigrant workers are both just people...and people of all types can have prejudices and believe in falsehoods and are never perfect. I think that's evident when we see Ali isn't a saint but cheats on his wife, and the Germans aren't all evil as at the end they seem to accept Ali and his wife. I guess that's what I'm trying to say...that the film was more reflective and balanced than preachy. Which I liked.



The thing isolated becomes incomprehensible
Almodovar is one of the greatest directors of today's non-american cinema. I'd say even the greatest. I should pick more films by him in later HoFs.

@cricket, check "Talk to Her" by him. It's insanely beautiful, and probably his best film. I also love Bad Education. And there's also a lovely short film called La consejala antropofoga that is on youtube.



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Almodovar is one of the greatest directors of today's non-american cinema. I'd say even the greatest. I should pick more films by him in later HoFs.

@cricket, check "Talk to Her" by him. It's insanely beautiful, and probably his best film. I also love Bad Education. And there's also a lovely short film called La consejala antropofoga that is on youtube.
After looking over his filmography there's like 10 I'd like to see.



After looking over his filmography there's like 10 I'd like to see.
He's got a solid top ten

All About My mother
Broken Embraces
Live Flesh
The Matador
Pain and Glory
The Skin I live In
Talk to Her
Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!
Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown
Volver

What I really like about him is unlike other directors he doesn't have one particular phase that is vastly greater than another one.



That's wonderful, Johnny!
Random Harvest


Yeah, I'll come back and review this when I've stopped crying maybe?

In all seriousness, I really liked this. I was absolutely gripped by their romance and the whole flight from the asylum, even though when they get their happy ending forty minutes into the film you know it can only go downhill from there. I don't know what to say because of spoilers. I just felt so sorry for everybody with the whole Kitty situation.

I did think some of what happened over the twelve years was a little implausible...surely there were other things she could have tried to bring back his memory? It was a bit frustrating to watch her being a bit too patient and self-sacrificing when it wasn't doing him any good either. Especially considering how things happened in the end.

Ronald Coleman is far too old for the lead character, yet I was absolutely charmed by his performance as Smithy. Greer Garson is great too, despite her terrible Scottish accent in her music hall performance.

I don't know why this film isn't better known, really. Or maybe it is and I just overlooked it. Glad to have seen it now, perfect melodrama for curling up on the sofa with.

I'd guess at CR having nominated this but don't know for sure.

I love Random Harvest so much that it is currently on my list of movies that might make my top 25 for the countdown.

I felt sorry for Kitty too, but I thought he was too old for her, and I think, she was kind of related to him, (his sister's stepdaughter, if I remember correctly), so they probably shouldn't have been engaged anyway.

In regards to what else Greer Garson's character could have done to try to spark his memory, she had a conversation with the doctor about pushing him too hard to remember, and how that could have made him resent her. I think she was afraid to lose him, so she just had to hope that he would remember on his own somehow.
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That's wonderful, Johnny!

The King of Comedy
"Why not me? Why not? A guy can get anything he wants as long as he pays the price. What's wrong with that? Stranger things have happened."

While I don't necessarily agree with that quote it certainly worked out well for Rupert. This is a tough movie to review because I didn't LIKE it yet there isn't much to complain about either. It just kind of...is.

Robert De Niro is Rupert Pumpkin, er Pupkin, the self proclaimed King of Comedy. He's a little loose upstairs and begins stalking late night host Jerry Langford (Jerry Lewis), after a late night encounter, to secure a spot on his night time talk show. After being rebuffed several times by Langford's assistant (and SECURITY!) he enlists his equally nutty "friend" Masha (Sandra Bernhard), who is also infatuated with Langford, to kidnap and hold Langford for ransom. The ransom: a spot on Langfords late night show.

My biggest issue with the movie is there isn't anyone to root for. I didn't like Rupert, he's the kind of person I find insanely annoying, but were not supposed to like him so... mission accomplished. I never got the sense that he felt entitled to anything but he definitely wasn't interested in putting in the work to get to where he wanted to go. He wanted a shortcut to success and in the end, maybe he got what he wanted. The rest of the characters just kind of do their thing. The only standout for me was Sandra Bernhard who I thought provided some dark comedy. I really liked her take on a crazed fan.

This being a Scorsese movie there really isn't much to complain about from a filmmaking point of view. It doesn't have any of the flash of later Scorsese pics but a film like this doesn't really lend itself to too much flash and the performances are all good.

As for what it has to say about fame and celebrity, I think the themes of this movie were a little ahead of its time. It feels more relevant in the past 20 years than it did in the 80's. Probably why a recent blockbuster chose to go down a similar, albeit darker, path. The King of Comedy isn't a bad movie by any stretch but it's not my type of movie. I need someone or something to pull for a little bit or for someone to be so incredibly awful that I want something to happen to them. This felt cold. If I were to create a 1,000 movies to see before you die this would be on it because it does have something to say and I can see why people love it, I just didn't care.

I saw The King of Comedy back when it was originally in the theaters, and I didn't like it. I've read a lot of good reviews of the movie, but I've never really understood what people see in it because I felt pretty much the same way you did. (It probably didn't help that I don't really like Robert De Niro, Jerry Lewis or Sandra Bernhard.)



I never could get the hang of Thursdays.
In contrast to just about everybody else, I've seen a whole bunch of Almodovar movies but not The Skin I Live In. I should get onto that, since it seems popular.

I would second the recommendation of Talk to Her for Cricket, it's not a nice film but it's a clever one in all sorts of ways.

My personal favourite of his films that I've seen is definitely Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.



After looking over his filmography there's like 10 I'd like to see.
If his Dark Habits isn't already one of those ten then you really ought to make that 11. I found it really amusing at times but then perhaps that's just my sense of humour.
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It probably didn't help that I don't really like Robert De Niro, Jerry Lewis or Sandra Bernhard.
Not a Jerry Lewis fan either, especially his comedy, but I thought he very good in The King of Comedy. Same with Bernhard. She always used to annoy me but I liked her character and performance here.



The King of Comedy

My biggest issue with the movie is there isn't anyone to root for...I need someone or something to pull for a little bit or for someone to be so incredibly awful that I want something to happen to them...
I call that the Disney/Star Wars effect. Those type of populist movies have made it so that people feel that if there's not someone to root for in a movie then there's nothing for them to like. I hear that all the time on MoFo. And of course if that's how a person feels, then that's how they feel....But me, I think The King of Comedy is Scorsese at his best. It's clever, bold, original and ground breaking. It was nominated in the 18th HoF and came in 2nd. People were really split on it, either hating it or loving it.



In contrast to just about everybody else, I've seen a whole bunch of Almodovar movies but not The Skin I Live In. I should get onto that, since it seems popular.
It's an incredible film. You really need to see it.

I nominated it in the 23rd HOF, which just ended a few days ago. It didn't win (Schindler's List did, unsurprisingly), but it came in second.



The thing isolated becomes incomprehensible
In contrast to just about everybody else, I've seen a whole bunch of Almodovar movies but not The Skin I Live In. I should get onto that, since it seems popular.

I would second the recommendation of Talk to Her for Cricket, it's not a nice film but it's a clever one in all sorts of ways.

My personal favourite of his films that I've seen is definitely Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.
And I second recommend that!!! Terrific film!



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




Is the person who recommended this to me, the same one who recommended The French Connection? Are they a die-hard Hackman fan and they want me to see more of his movies?

I think I expected a little bit more paranoia and a little bit more wiretapping. The film opens with a great sequence in which we see "the master" at work trying to record a conversation of two people as they walk about a busy union square. Then we move on to scenes of him trying his best to clear the audio up for the client and things start to get a little fishy when the client isn't around to accept the recordings, but his eager assistant is.

I think we spent a little too much time at the convention and at the party afterwards, I wanted more of his deep dive into the possibilities of what these people were saying. Coppola does a pretty good job of delivering us information as he sees fit. Showing us one way to listen/view things and then revealing the same scene but from a different perspective. Too many times in real life do people emphasize different words, which give off different meanings.

A decent performance from Hackman, although I could tell he was having trouble with the character. It's pretty amazing that this and The Godfather Part II came out in the same year. Also...dude...when someone who is known for bugging people casually slips a pen in your pocket...how the hell do you not suspect it to be a bug? I knew from the moment he slipped it in, you should have too.
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The Conversation is yet another movie that I want to see again. I watched it for the 70's countdown and was a little disappointed but so many people love it and I'm a big Hackman fan.



The thing isolated becomes incomprehensible
The Sting (1973)

A very good film that I've been meaning to watch for quite some time.

It's exactly what I was expecting. The acting is as great as you'd expect with such a stellar cast, the writing is very tongue in cheek and straight to the point and the plot balances well its turns and twists with a steady pacing. I really liked the literary aspect to it too, with that beggining and all the chapter cards.

Of course, with a genre that is so popular the final twist kind of comes unsurprisingly but that's not exactly the movie's fault.

Nice choice!




Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
That also would be me. Just to echo CR here, Wilder is also one of my favorite Directors as well.
Also, outside of Working Girl for Thursday, I’m doing pretty well here. 😎
Just realized I didn't thank you directly -- THANKS Wylde!! This has been burning a SERIOUS hole in my Must See! Films and will be moving over to my Rewatchable Films.
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- This is one of those films where I liked it on first viewing but I feel like watching it again might actually make me dislike it, but that's pretentious existentialism for you.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
I realise that I sort of answered the wrong question before, I missed the 'when'. Although my answer was true for this film.

I guess that it's a question of audience - the audiences who want to see male nudity probably don't want want to see female nudity and vice versa. Although most films are seen by a whole mixture of people so that doesn't really hold up to scrutiny. It's probably more about what film studios assume audiences want to see.

I watched Game of Thrones recently and there's a definite imbalance in the nudity in that.
You mean Game of Boobs?
Yeah, just a little bit