Make Your Picks

Rate The Last Movie You Saw

Tools    







Hiroshima Mon Amour, 1959

[...]
The film is definitely skewed very strongly toward the point of view of the actress. I would have wanted to know more about the experiences and feelings of the architect. That said, the film is convincing in showing the chemistry and emotion between the two of them to the point that you entirely believe why it would bring up such a well of emotion in her, and why he would persist in pursuing her despite her erratic state of mind.

A really lovely film that already begs a rewatch for deeper understanding.

For what it's worth, I encountered these lectures (or an earlier version/course of these lectures) probably close to a couple decades ago (back when you could get them through iTunes in your podcatcher of choice), and I'm pretty sure my now quarter-remembered recollection of them shapes how I view the characters behaviors in Hiroshima mon Amour.

https://www.learnoutloud.com/Free-Au...and-Film/18193

Also greatly influenced how I viewed AI: Artificial Intelligence as well, but that's a story for another time.



10 Foreign Language movies to go
I agree. Great film. The rapport between C. Grant and R. Russell is very appealing, as is their lighting fast dialogue-- which had been insisted upon by Howard Hawks.

You've probably seen The Front Page (1931), the original film based upon the Broadway play, but if you haven't, I think you'd like it. Aldolphe Menjou and Pat O'Brien played the main parts that Grant and Russell played later (Burns and Hilldy). And it was a good choice on Hawk's part to make Hildy a female in the re-make. "Page" is a very good picture, but I'd give the edge to "His Girl".
Yeah, I'd seen that adaption before I originally saw His Girl Friday, but the image and sound quality weren't the best. On the Criterion edition of Friday they actually include The Front Page in it's entirety as a special feature, and I'm hoping it's a lot clearer and more crisp - I'm looking forward to seeing it again.
__________________
My movie ratings often go up or down a point or two after more reflection, research and rewatches.




10 Foreign Language movies to go

By The poster art can or could be obtained from the distributor., Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=45249015

Phoenix - (2014)

Saw three weighty, first-class films yesterday, so it was hard to know which one to lead with. I gave the honor to Phoenix, a Fassbinder-like examination of identity in post-war Berlin, where in a strange twist of fate a woman pretends to be the exact person she is. Nelly Lenz (Nina Hoss) is a Jewish lady who has survived the camps - she was shot, and her face destroyed, but survived. After facial reconstruction she is taken to Berlin and helped by a woman (Lene Winter - played by Nina Kunzendorf) who intends to take her to Palestine. Nelly wants to find her husband however, despite the fact that he may have betrayed her to the Nazis. Nelly's husband, "Johnny" (Ronald Zehrfeld) doesn't recognize her, but has a feeling she's a perfect candidate to help him get his hands on Nelly's inheritance - all she has to do is pretend to be Nelly. Nelly yearns to reconnect with Johnny, despite the fact he's a cad, probably sold her out, and treats her harshly. She aches for his recognition, and for some kind of sign that he's divined her soul - and holds out hope that he isn't the person he so obviously is. It's a film that gives you pause so you can question what makes us who we are - what others perceive us to be? Our own idea of ourselves? Or is identity just an illusion? Something we think we know, but is ultimately unknowable? This was a very well constructed psychological drama by Christian Petzold - the first film of his I've seen.

8/10


By May be found at the following website: http://www.cinelibre.be/scripts/Film...he=1&Layout=01, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=31520323

The Kid With a Bike - (2011)

I was very much interested in seeing more films from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne after watching and reviewing La Promesse in a Hall of Fame, and The Kid With a Bike is the second feature of theirs I've landed on. It's a very grounded and heartfelt film, with Cyril (Thomas Doret) - a 12-year-old boy who has been abandoned by his father, but can't quite believe that his dad has done that to him. Not only that, but his father has sold the boy's precious bike - and this thoughtless and cruel rejection has predictable psychological consequences for the boy. One woman, Samantha (Cécile de France), takes to him, but has to not only manage his troubled behavior, but contend with neighbourhood drug dealers who try to befriend the love-starved Cyril and get him to participate in violent robberies. Some scenes, such as when Cyril pays a visit to his father who he really adores, but wants nothing to do with him, are especially poignant. Cyril's father is so young, you have to reckon on him being in his mid-teens when he had him - he has written Cyril out of his life story, and wants to start again. With this boy's misfortune, can any amount of love make up for the love he's lost?

7.5/10


By May be found at the following website: [1], Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=61690934

The Irishman - (2019)

The Irishman hits some awe-inspiring peaks, but I have to wonder if it really needed to be 209 minutes long. Films like Seven Samurai and Lawrence of Arabia did need to be as long as they were, but if feels like The Irishman is a story that could have been told in two and a half hours and still had room for contemplation and the kind of wistful regret that registers every time we see De Niro's face towards the end. God bless Scorsese for bringing back Joe Pesci, who gives one of the best performances of his career - all the more impressive that he had nothing to prove and wasn't yearning for one last glorious Scorsese role. I really liked The Irishman a lot, though I'm sad to say that it was hard for me to see Pacino as Hoffa - but that alone didn't sour my experience. The film dragged at times, but delivered much all the same.

7.5/10



The problem as I see it is that there aren't strict lines between the things we're attempting to characterize here. Where does "wooing" end and coercion begin? Where does coercion start to trip into intimidation? Where does intimidation become threat? Obviously applying relentless verbal pressure to someone is not the same as physically holding them down, but they're not entirely unrelated dynamics


Characterizing getting a woman to have sex with you as something you have to overcome inherently starts to skew into non-consensual territory. (Though again there is nuance because sometimes a person is hesitant or unexcited about something but is happy ultimately that someone talked them into it. In the specific context of this film, Sandy is obviously happy about how things went with Danny.).


I still fundamentally disagree with you, Stu, in your initial comment about seeing "Love at first sight" and "Did she put up a fight?" as contrasting ways of talking about the same thing. We can agree that "Did she put up a fight?" is asking "Did she resist having sex with you?", right?
Not necessarily; I mean, going back and rewatching that scene again has actually made me more convinced that there's less anything concretely skeezy about that line, because I actually Mandela Effected myself into thinking the guy made a fist when he sang it (and possibly symbolized some sort of a physical struggle in the process), but he really just puts his hand over his heart Pledge Of Allegiance-style, as if to say "Was it hard to win her heart/love?". And in that case, it's such a vague sentiment that could mean any number of things, since as far as we know, he was just wondering if Sandy was difficult to impress while Danny was trying to woo her, and maybe he had to spend a lot of money on a fancy date before she'd give him a chance, or something like that?


Of course, there's no way of knowing for 100% sure what was meant by the line/moment without asking the songwriters/filmmakers, but until then, unless something more concretely problematic can reasonably be inferred on our own, why infer it? I mean, if you assume there's something creepy about a vague line, then of course it's going to, well, seem creepy, but why assume that without the additional context needed here? Because if you ask me, I think there are enough actual offensive things in older movies to criticize (including other things in Grease itself, like the message of conformity Crumb talked about) without assuming there had to be something creepy about such a vague line, to be honest.



he really just puts his hand over his heart Pledge Of Allegiance-style, as if to say "Was it hard to win her heart/love?".

Yes, exactly the kind of question we should expect from a bunch of greaser toughs. Especially in a song where their responses always have sexual connotations attached to them.


You seem to think you would need the Pink Ladies to be asking Sandy directly "did you ****" before "did you put up a fight" can be interpreted as sexually orientated. But that is clearly not the point of the songs structure. The men are ironic counterpoints to the Pink Ladies' more swoony take on romance. To have that line be a direct response to their questions about love, with an answer that is also about love, would make literally zero sense in the context of what the running gag of the song is.


But no, we can't say for certain without talking to the songwriters. But this doesn't mean we can't look at character, context and intent to determine what is most likely the meaning. And you have to be reading the linguistics of this song in a complete bubble to at least not acknowledge the distinct possibility that this is how it should be taken.


And I'm more than fine having this response moved to another thread since it's not really the point of the thread




By The poster art can or could be obtained from the distributor., Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=45249015

Phoenix - (2014)

It's a film that gives you pause so you can question what makes us who we are - what others perceive us to be? Our own idea of ourselves? Or is identity just an illusion? Something we think we know, but is ultimately unknowable? This was a very well constructed psychological drama by Christian Petzold - the first film of his I've seen.

8/10
I love this film. It's an absolute 10/10 for me. And that ENDING!

And in that case, it's such a vague sentiment that could mean any number of things, since as far as we know, he was just wondering if Sandy was difficult to impress while Danny was trying to woo her, and maybe he had to spend a lot of money on a fancy date before she'd give him a chance, or something like that?
If you don't understand why someone, and specifically a female someone, would have a gut negative reaction to hearing someone ask if a woman "put up a fight" in the context of a sexual encounter, I simply don't know what to say anymore. I think that I have summed up all of my viewpoints in my previous posts.



For what it's worth, I encountered these lectures (or an earlier version/course of these lectures) probably close to a couple decades ago (back when you could get them through iTunes in your podcatcher of choice), and I'm pretty sure my now quarter-remembered recollection of them shapes how I view the characters behaviors in Hiroshima mon Amour.

https://www.learnoutloud.com/Free-Au...and-Film/18193

Also greatly influenced how I viewed AI: Artificial Intelligence as well, but that's a story for another time.
Thank you for the link!





Avengers: Endgame, 2019

In the aftermath of the events of Infinity War, the surviving members are trying to cope with their losses. Shocked when Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) reappears from the Quantum Realm, the Avengers realize that they might have a chance to get their loved ones back after all.

Okay, fine. FINE! I've used the words "exhausted" and "fatigue" to describe my feelings about most of the Marvel movies I've seen in the last 5 years or so. After enjoying most of the movies, I hit a turning point where the excessive runtimes and just overall sameness of the films had worn down my enjoyment. But to give full credit where credit is due, I enjoyed this movie quite a bit and thought it was a fitting bookend to what had come before it.

I was not optimistic when I was initially eyeing up the 3 hour run time. But I think that why the film largely worked for me is that it divides its story and its cast in clever ways. The first half of the movie is overtly styled as a heist. The Avengers must jump back to different points in their own pasts to capture the infinity stones before Thanos can get his hands on them. This works well on two levels. On the first level, it's just fun to see the way that the characters interact with their earlier selves and the events from their past. The second reason it works well is because it divides up the team into smaller groups so that we have more time to spend with each of them. This format allows for more small moments of reflection and personal interaction, such as when Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) quest to a distant realm where they must parse out their feelings on destiny and duty and self-worth and redemption.

The film is also very short on the kind of bloated, "what is even happening?!" CGI-laden action that I've come to find borderline insufferable. Even the final showdown, which looked like it was headed that way, managed to pull itself more into small moments and personal stakes. The action is highly centered on character decisions, and most of those are centered on difficult choices.

My favorite subplot in the whole Marvel universe up to this point has been the fractured-then-repaired friendship between Bucky (Sebastian Stan) and Captain America (Chris Evans). But I thought that the overall theme of this film---loss in its many forms--was really well done. Every character, at some point in the film, is forced to look at the losses they have suffered. For some of them, like Hawkeye, those losses can in theory be reversed. For Captain America, the loss is the love he left in the past. For Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and later the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), the loss is one that is irreversible. For Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr), the loss is what he risks if he ventures back into battle. And I really felt like it just works. It is coherent in a way that I've not really felt in one of these films in a long time, and it's impressive because of the way that it encompasses such a sprawl of characters.

Generally speaking, I felt like the choices made in this film (a handful of eye-rolling "comic relief" moments notwithstanding) were god ones. Very little wasted time. And just the right amount of sentiment for its characters. I really liked the touch of the actors' signatures over the roles that they played.




Victim of The Night


Avengers: Endgame, 2019

In the aftermath of the events of Infinity War, the surviving members are trying to cope with their losses. Shocked when Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) reappears from the Quantum Realm, the Avengers realize that they might have a chance to get their loved ones back after all.

Okay, fine. FINE! I've used the words "exhausted" and "fatigue" to describe my feelings about most of the Marvel movies I've seen in the last 5 years or so. After enjoying most of the movies, I hit a turning point where the excessive runtimes and just overall sameness of the films had worn down my enjoyment. But to give full credit where credit is due, I enjoyed this movie quite a bit and thought it was a fitting bookend to what had come before it.

I was not optimistic when I was initially eyeing up the 3 hour run time. But I think that why the film largely worked for me is that it divides its story and its cast in clever ways. The first half of the movie is overtly styled as a heist. The Avengers must jump back to different points in their own pasts to capture the infinity stones before Thanos can get his hands on them. This works well on two levels. On the first level, it's just fun to see the way that the characters interact with their earlier selves and the events from their past. The second reason it works well is because it divides up the team into smaller groups so that we have more time to spend with each of them. This format allows for more small moments of reflection and personal interaction, such as when Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) quest to a distant realm where they must parse out their feelings on destiny and duty and self-worth and redemption.

The film is also very short on the kind of bloated, "what is even happening?!" CGI-laden action that I've come to find borderline insufferable. Even the final showdown, which looked like it was headed that way, managed to pull itself more into small moments and personal stakes. The action is highly centered on character decisions, and most of those are centered on difficult choices.

My favorite subplot in the whole Marvel universe up to this point has been the fractured-then-repaired friendship between Bucky (Sebastian Stan) and Captain America (Chris Evans). But I thought that the overall theme of this film---loss in its many forms--was really well done. Every character, at some point in the film, is forced to look at the losses they have suffered. For some of them, like Hawkeye, those losses can in theory be reversed. For Captain America, the loss is the love he left in the past. For Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and later the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), the loss is one that is irreversible. For Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr), the loss is what he risks if he ventures back into battle. And I really felt like it just works. It is coherent in a way that I've not really felt in one of these films in a long time, and it's impressive because of the way that it encompasses such a sprawl of characters.

Generally speaking, I felt like the choices made in this film (a handful of eye-rolling "comic relief" moments notwithstanding) were god ones. Very little wasted time. And just the right amount of sentiment for its characters. I really liked the touch of the actors' signatures over the roles that they played.

You have given me joy-joy feelings.



10 Foreign Language movies to go

By May be found at the following website: [1], Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=42736742

Two Days, One Night - (2014)

This is the third Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne film I've seen, and my favourite out of all of them so far. Two Days, One Night speaks to most people who struggle in the modern world with few jobs and overburdening financial pressures - especially those the victim of unfair practices. In this Sandra Bya (Marion Cotillard) has been fired from her job after her boss told all of her workmates to vote over whether they want a 1000 euro bonus or else keep her on. Her husband and friend have convinced the boss to do the vote over on Monday, and so over the weekend Sandra must go from workmate to workmate pleading her case, desperate to keep a job she needs for the family to stay afloat. Meanwhile she's struggling with the aftermath of depression - which doesn't help when some workmates become aggressive with her. It's a battle with ebbs and flows - some are moved to tears and side with her, which bucks up her spirits, while some actually become physically violent. The atmosphere of financial desperation and utter hopelessness permeates this film, but it's not a depressing one - it's a rollercoaster of emotions and something that will have your absolute empathy.

Marion Cotillard is great in this (she was nominated for an Oscar), and the movie as a whole is a good example of the kind of everyday stuff the Dardenne brothers construct their films around, reminiscent of Italian neorealism. All of their movies are very grounded representations of real problems that real people might have - but in this an entire economic system is being held to account. Too many people are being unfairly squeezed into poverty needlessly, just so the rich can get even richer. Visually, it feels like we're walking around with Sandra on her wretched and distressing mission, without overt cinematic shots so it doesn't break the feeling of reality. An easy recommendation from me.

9/10




By May be found at the following website: [1], Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=42736742

Two Days, One Night - (2014)

This is the third Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne film I've seen, and my favourite out of all of them so far. Two Days, One Night speaks to most people who struggle in the modern world with few jobs and overburdening financial pressures - especially those the victim of unfair practices.
.
.
.
Marion Cotillard is great in this (she was nominated for an Oscar), and the movie as a whole is a good example of the kind of everyday stuff the Dardenne brothers construct their films around, reminiscent of Italian neorealism. All of their movies are very grounded representations of real problems that real people might have - but in this an entire economic system is being held to account. Too many people are being unfairly squeezed into poverty needlessly, just so the rich can get even richer. Visually, it feels like we're walking around with Sandra on her wretched and distressing mission, without overt cinematic shots so it doesn't break the feeling of reality. An easy recommendation from me.

9/10
The way that this film depicts how systems are put in place to pit people against each other while those at the top never have to scrabble at all is so painful. A friend of mine was just told she has to lay off three of the five people on her team, despite the fact that they are the most successful team at doing their role in the company. This led to others sharing their stories, including one person who was at a meeting where layoffs were announced. When someone asked if any of the executives were taking a paycut, one of them answered no because "it wouldn't have made any difference." Actually, if even one of them had taken a 5% paycut, it would have saved at least one person and maybe two from being let go.

I think that this movie puts that injustice out there, while also acknowledging that people like Sandra have no choice but to play the game because they do not have any leverage.

Have you seen L'Enfant? Just watched it a bit ago and thought it was very good.



10 Foreign Language movies to go
The way that this film depicts how systems are put in place to pit people against each other while those at the top never have to scrabble at all is so painful. A friend of mine was just told she has to lay off three of the five people on her team, despite the fact that they are the most successful team at doing their role in the company. This led to others sharing their stories, including one person who was at a meeting where layoffs were announced. When someone asked if any of the executives were taking a paycut, one of them answered no because "it wouldn't have made any difference." Actually, if even one of them had taken a 5% paycut, it would have saved at least one person and maybe two from being let go.
I read a joke this morning that touches on that. "A CEO, a Tea Party member, and a union worker are sitting at a table. A plate of twelve cookies appears. The CEO grabs eleven of them, looks at the Tea Partier, and exclaims, pointing to the worker, "Watch out - he wants your cookie!"" It takes a special kind of greed to set your own people against each other. It's so frustrating, because it's all often a greed that's so needless. A lot of these people in lofty positions are already rich, and have far more than they need - but they'll inflict suffering on others just so they'll be that little bit more rich.

Have you seen L'Enfant? Just watched it a bit ago and thought it was very good.
I read your review of that and enjoyed it - as I was already interested in the directors I'm looking forward to seeing it very much.



Victim of The Night
As I was writing this I was like, "Well, I know at least one person who will like this opinion."
Seriously, it's always been the character stuff and the world-building I liked about these movies. Very little of the action is any more interesting to me than any other action. But that's true in general for me these days.
Did you do Infinity War already, I can't remember.



Victim of The Night
I read a joke this morning that touches on that. "A CEO, a Tea Party member, and a union worker are sitting at a table. A plate of twelve cookies appears. The CEO grabs eleven of them, looks at the Tea Partier, and exclaims, pointing to the worker, "Watch out - he wants your cookie!"" It takes a special kind of greed to set your own people against each other. It's so frustrating, because it's all often a greed that's so needless. A lot of these people in lofty positions are already rich, and have far more than they need - but they'll inflict suffering on others just so they'll be that little bit more rich.
That's actually also one of my favorite jokes, though I hadn't heard it with the Tea Partier. I originally heard it when Trump was first running and turning immigration into the big issue.
"A banker, a blue-collar worker, and an immigrant are sitting around a plate with a dozen cookies on it. The banker takes elven and gets up to leave, then leans over and whispers in the worker's ear, "Hey! I think that immigrant's tryin' to take your cookie."
It works with a bunch of different characters. Great joke.



If you don't understand why someone, and specifically a female someone, would have a gut negative reaction to hearing someone ask if a woman "put up a fight" in the context of a sexual encounter, I simply don't know what to say anymore. I think that I have summed up all of my viewpoints in my previous posts.
I understand it; I mean, that's why I've been talking to you about it like this, so I can get a better understanding of why you feel the way you do about it (and vice versa, hopefully). If you don't want to talk about this anymore, then I'll leave you alone about it after this, I just want to say that adults of all genders should be able to exchange their thoughts on gender-related issues, and any other sensitive subject in good faith, without say, dismissing one another's opinions because of the differences in identity they might have, or refusing to communicate about them at all (or anything else that might get in the way of that), because otherwise, men and women might as well just stop talking to each other about anything, as far as I'm concerned.



Professional horse shoe straightener
'The Trial' (1962)
Directed by Orson Welles



Watched the new 4K Disc which is just stunning in terms of image quality and does Edmond Richard’s beautiful photography justice. Orson Welles filmed it in the former Yugoslavia with many shots including parallel lines of architecture and shadows. In later shots, clearly drawing from his love of German expressionism in terms of visuals, there are rooms filled with cracks and crates and spikes which seem to pay homage to the likes of Cabinet of Dr Caligari. However the audio wasn’t great, perhaps because Welles dubbed many of the international cast into English and the sync of the dialogue was out in most scenes.

The film is obviously the definition of ‘Kafkaesque’, as we enter a paranoid, disorienting nightmare faced by the main character Josef K (Anthony Perkins). Josef is accused of a crime by the police, who may or not be the police, but he’s not told what the crime is. He stumbles into various characters and into his own trial but gets more confused as the film goes on. Unfortunately I got more confused too. It’s difficult to follow at times and challenges the viewer with long scenes of profound dialogue, especially in the middle of the film.

The ending though is truly superb and must surely have inspired many films from ‘Being John Malkovich’ to ‘The Truman Show’ and everything in between. I will re-watch this film at some point to try and focus on the dialogue more than the beautiful photography, which may reveal more.