Rate The Last Movie You Saw

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I forgot the opening line.

By http://www.doctormacro.com/Movie%20S...ar%20Bride.htm, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5570072

I Was a Male War Bride - (1949)

I have to resign myself to the fact that not every comedy featuring Cary Grant can be as good as Bringing Up Baby or The Awful Truth - two films that lifted the bar a little too high perhaps. I still enjoyed watching him in this, but while the screenplay made much room for physical comedy, the funny stuff didn't register as strongly with me. Grant plays French Army Captain Henri Rochard - no accent or French mannerisms, just Grant being Grant. He has a contentious relationship with American Lieutenant Catherine Gates (Ann Sheridan) - but that's just the sexual chemistry talking. As soon as they're married, the film spends the rest of it's time preventing them from consummating the nuptials - but I'm sure they'd been doing plenty of that already. I mean, they get married three times due to regulations and a promise Rochard made to his local minister. He doesn't dress up and pretend to be a woman until the very end of the film. This was okay, but average compared to some of the better films Grant was in.

6/10


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Scary Movie - (2000)

This was somewhat better than I thought it was going to be, delivering a few laughs (along with many groans) - I really liked the Doofy Gilmore (Dave Sheridan) take on Dewey Riley from the Scream franchise. It simply throws a million cream pies, making it inevitable that a few will hit - there aren't as many hits than there are misses, but as I anticipated no hits at all I have to walk away surprised. I don't think I'll watch any of the sequels or related "Movie" films though.

5/10


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Tangerines - (2013)

During the war in Abkhazia, a civilian looks after two injured soldiers - both from opposing sides in the war, and both intent on killing the other as soon as they're able. A lot of valuable insight into the different perspectives people have during conflict, and how humanity can recover from pure hatred and murderous rage - reviewed here in my watchlist thread. Great movie.

8/10
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Paradise : Love - (2012)

Middle-aged, overweight Austrian lady Teresa (Margarethe Tiesel) goes on a "sex holiday" to Kenya in this heartbreaking first film in Ulrich Seidl's Paradise trilogy. Recommended. Review here, on my watchlist thread.

8/10
It's a good trilogy. I'm glad people are watching Seidl's films.



'Twelve and Holding' (2005)

Dir.: Michael Cuesta


I have no idea how I even heard about this film; so thanks to whoever suggested it - it's really quite good. It's the most Todd Solondz film not directed by Todd Solondz. A coming of age type affair but with some very humorous (and serious) drama.

It dissects three connecting families and their parent-children relationship. One is an overweight boy who is unhappy at his overeating, one is a girl who has just started menstruating and has an infatuation with a local builder (played by Jeremy Renner) and one is a boy who feels his parents love his brother more than him.

There are some slightly histrionic subplots (I mean really a 12 year old going on regular secret visits to prison?) but the film is sweet and has a sort of charisma that enables the viewer to overlook the inadequacies.

A nice way to spend 90 minutes

7.3/10







Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10191459

Scary Movie - (2000)

This was somewhat better than I thought it was going to be, delivering a few laughs (along with many groans) - I really liked the Doofy Gilmore (Dave Sheridan) take on Dewey Riley from the Scream franchise. It simply throws a million cream pies, making it inevitable that a few will hit - there aren't as many hits than there are misses, but as I anticipated no hits at all I have to walk away surprised. I don't think I'll watch any of the sequels or related "Movie" films though.

5/10

Not a fan of it either. The second one is the one to see out of the bunch. The hit to miss ratio in Scary Movie 2 is much better.



Fallen Leaves -


Bush was right: it is the little things that kill. Short, sweet and honest, this romantic comedy proves that our hindrances to happiness and fulfillment often come in small packages. Being small isn't a hindrance in and of itself, though. This movie, like the songs the patrons at its Karaoke bar perform, defines efficient. From the shot of the pile of hapless blue-collar worker Holappa's spent cigarettes as he waits for kind-hearted Ansa to show up to the moment where Ansa sadly unplugs her electronics after losing her job, almost every moment in this movie proves that less is more. Besides revealing the power of small things, the movie also does well at showing how miserable it is to feel small. The news reports of Russia's invasion of Ukraine make me feel powerless, so I can only imagine how much stronger the sensation is to a geographical neighbor. The kicker arrives when Ansa turns on the radio so that she and Holappa can listen to music together only for yet another war update to play instead. Despite all this hopelessness on both the small and large scales, I had reason to laugh many times regardless. We can only hope to have a friend like Holappa's pal Hannes, whose barb trading and uncertain age definitely add the most comic relief.

From a stolen cake past its expiration date to a tiny bottle of vodka to a slip of paper with a phone number written on it blowing away in the wind, we see how little things can have unfortunate ramifications. On the other hand, as the movie so optimistically demonstrates, a kind gesture can make a huge difference whether it's from a friend or for yourself. I like a good epic-length feature as much as the next person, but I doubt I'm alone in being less enthusiastic about discovering that a movie I am looking forward to has a 2+ hour runtime. Thankfully, we still have filmmakers like Aki Kaurismaki to prove that bigger is not always better, but also in more ways than one.




Unfaithfully Yours (1984)

One of the great things about watching an inferior remake is that it reminds you just how good the original really is - though sometimes you may also feel you didn't need to be reminded of it.
This remake of Unfaithfully Yours isn't all that terrible as far as 80s comedies go, but it certainly doesn't hold a candle to the 1948 original, for a number of reasons.
As a big Preston Sturges fan, I will naturally always stick with the original - but I have to confess, I had been curious about this movie for a while since it has had somewhat limited availability for home viewing in recent years. Maybe not because it isn't very good, although that probably didn't help, either.






1st Rewatch...Crisp direction by Ang Lee and a spectacular ensemble cast are at the success of this steamy suburban drama set in the early 1970's that focuses on the evolving sexual morals of the period. The sham marriage of Kevin Kline and Joan Allen, Christina Ricci as their angry and sexually provocative daughter having sex with brothers, and best of all, the sexual dynamo predator played by Sigourney Weaver. Also loved that key party. Great film.




The Man from London (2007, Béla Tarr, Ágnes Hranitzky)

I guess you could call this a mystery neo noir (btw, it is an adaptation of a novel by Belgian writer Georges Simenon) but the signature Bela Tarr treatment gives it a vibe and a look of emotional and intellectual profundity that elevates it way beyond genre constraints. It's not as monumental as Sátántangó (few films are), or as harrowing as Werckmeister Harmonies, or as bleak and depressing as the Turin Horse, but it stands on its own nonetheless. The black-and-white cinematography, replete with beautifully dreary, atmospheric sets, drawn-out static and tracking shots and Bergmanesque closeups, is magnificent and truly hypnotic— like those opening and closing shots, for instance, or the elliptical hut door scene. I also like how he choreographs his scenes, sometimes switching between a protagonist's POV to the audience POV, making us a quiet secret observer, almost like a witness at the crime scene. Great film, definitely the most accessible that I've seen from Béla Tarr.





Cabrini


It may have the subtlety of a sledgehammer and be as sophisticated as (and have the same depth as) a crayon drawing, but this movie still more than held my interest over almost 2-1/2 hours with the story of "America's first saint".

I don't know how closely it follow the actual facts of Cabrini's story - this is the kind of movie where you all but expect a bit of actual mustache-twirling by the bad guys, but it sort of gets the main idea across.

The cast includes some not-bad turns by David Morse and John Lithgow; Cristiana Dell'Anna does a fairly good job here as the title character despite the screenplay's obvious limitations.
Dell’Anna was brilliant in Gomorrah, the Italian series.
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Nothing special. Two leads very good. One of those movies where one wonders why they bothered.



The Man from London (2007, Béla Tarr, Ágnes Hranitzky)
His weakest since The Prefab People but still amazing since it's Bela Tarr. I need to rewatch it. (Just like all Bela Tarr films tbh)



Cutters Way (1981)

A bit of a strange Modern Noir here, featuring Jeff Bridges as a younger version of the Dude (but a bit of a gigolo) and John Heard as a disabled Vietnam veteran. They become embroiled in the death of a young lady and reluctantly decide to investigate. Alex comes across as unhinged due to his unpredictable and volatile behaviour beside John who is laid back to the max. It meanders as all films of this era seem to do. I enjoyed and the ending with the horse and blackout is a bit mad too which I appreciated.



His weakest since The Prefab People but still amazing since it's Bela Tarr. I need to rewatch it. (Just like all Bela Tarr films tbh)
Yeah if I were to rank the films that I've seen by him, this would definitely rank lowest, but that's saying little, given how tremendous the other ones are.



Now you're talking, An Elephant Sitting Still is absolutely mind blowing. Tinged with tragedy inside and outside the picture. His first and last film.

Garden of Words is the go to animated piece I state when people ask what's the most beautiful anime you've ever seen.

I need to see 5cm/s
Good choice for showcase animation.
If you can, watch Your Name (if you haven't already). Same director, beautiful anime.



Good choice for showcase animation.
If you can, watch Your Name (if you haven't already). Same director, beautiful anime.
I have seen Your Name and yes it's great. Not quite as beautiful as Garden of Words but very moving.



Yeah if I were to rank the films that I've seen by him, this would definitely rank lowest, but that's saying little, given how tremendous the other ones are.
What are some other favorite directors of yours?





MARCH 5, 2024


BOB MARLEY: ONE LOVE (2024)


DUNE: PART TWO (2024)

Last week was a special Tuesday two-fer, for a total of $15 and change. And both movies were well worth the money.

Kingsley Ben-Adir turned in a wonderful performance as the title singer in Bob Marley: One Love, and on the whole I found the movie very absorbing and involving. Granted, I've never really been that big a fan of reggae music, and I kind of found the Jamaican accent rather thick, so understanding some lines of dialogue proved to be a bit of a challenge sometimes. But I had no problem whatsoever following along with the story. I've heard and read things to the effect that the movie was either too much of a "routine" biopic or perhaps too much of an officially sanctioned whitewash of Marley's life story. (His son Ziggy - by which I mean the man himself - gives an introduction to the film, in effect giving the official imprimatur.) Not really being a die-hard fan, and not having any particular opinion myself, I can only go by what I saw on the screen, which was well-directed (by Reinaldo Marcus Green) and well-acted. All in all, an inspiring true story of a nation's political strife, faith, forgiveness and the redemptive, healing power of music. I would very much recommend it. (I also saw a trailer for the upcoming Amy Whitehouse Back To Black biopic. Anyone ever notice how musical biopics tend to come in two's? By way of example: Ray and Walk The Line in 2004-05, and Bohemian Rhapsody and Rocketman in 2018-19.)

I've got to say that Denis Villeneuve knocked it out of the park with Dune: Part Two. I had enjoyed Part One, but it very much felt like a setup for things which would pay off only later on. The thing about Part Two, however, is that it also feels less like something with a rounded conclusion, but more the middle part of a trilogy which would probably be concluded by Dune Messiah! (I've heard hints dropped that this is in fact what's in the works.) The thing which Villeneuve achieves so well with Dune: Part Two is the strange mixture of inspiration and dread with regard to the character of Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet). By which I mean, while it's inspiring to watch Paul Atreides training to become a fighter and leader of the Fremen, and learning to ride sandworms, we feel a sense of dread at what he starts to turn into once he drinks the Water of Life. This is also borne out by the manipulations of Paul's mother Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson), who is all too keen on exploiting the religious fanaticism of the Fremen people, just as the Bene Gesserit have done for eons. And the audience definitely feels a sense of regret at Paul's ultimate alienation of Chani (Zendaya) by the film's end. One feels like all this will ultimately come to a head in the third film. While not having actually read any of Frank Herbert's novels (as of yet - one of these days, right?), Villeneuve's vision strikes me as perhaps much closer to what Herbert had in mind thematically, and probably gets a lot closer to Herbert's vision than the 1984 David Lynch film - which perhaps suffered from having to compress far too much - or the unmade Alejandro Jodorowsky film from the '70s. (It must be said that however divergent Jodorowsky's and Lynch's visions might be from Herbert's original material, they both possess their own uniquely idiosyncratic qualities that are worthy of respect.) As with Villeneuve's first Dune, I am very much impressed and would heartily recommend the film. But as with its predecessor, I'm left kind of wanting more. And I know that if this film is financially successful enough, more will be forthcoming...
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