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HEART OF GLASS is a movie I loved but in keeping with it's dream-like quality, the details have faded beyond the general surreal impression and hypnotized performances.



The trick is not minding
Heart of Glass, along with Stroszek and The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser, are fantastic films that get overshadowed by Aguirre and Fitzcarraldo. I might even rank a few of them ahead of Fitzcarraldo.




By soloclasicosmodernos, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7089806

Ryan's Daughter - (1970)

I was only going to watch the first half of this 198 minute film last night, but once I got going I couldn't stop and had to watch the whole thing. This was blasted upon initial release because it didn't reach the epic heights of Lean's Lawrence of Arabia and Bridge on the River Kwai, but what got lost was the fact that it's still an extremely good film. Sarah Miles makes us feel both pity and hatred for her titular character - and John Mills won an Oscar for playing the village idiot Michael. Robert Mitchum plays completely against type. I wasn't even phased by it's length - I just found it enjoyable and compelling. The critics probably cost us a David Lean film or two - he went on a 14 year hiatus, wounded by not living up to his own high standards. Great cinematography too - as you'd expect.

8/10
__________________
My movie ratings often go up or down a point or two after more reflection, research and rewatches.




I, Robot


7/10


Over all very entertaining and pretty even though the script writing isnt that great. It also does clearly demonstrate the problem with robotic society...only if we had listened, haha...I also didn't think will Smith's characteristically PG humor was so bad.



In addition to the Arrow blu-ray, I think I've seen their stuff on iTunes. When I looked a few years ago. The Beast wasn't on iTunes (not surprising), but the Dr Jekyll and Miss Hyde one was (a little surprising).
Awesome, I use iTunes a lot and now that you mention it I think I did see Jekyll/Ms. Hyde on there.



1/10 Enemy of the State (1998)


This has everything i hate about the ocean movies and ****ty conspiracy theories. Too many points of disconnect in the plot develpment (ie., hard to understand what's really going on), and over-reliance on cinematography. The newer manchurian candidate is a lot better in terms of political espionage.
Yeah, I saw this in the theater and thought it outright sucked and was a real low-point for Gene Hackman. Not that he didn't do his job, he always did, but just for him to even dignify that film with his presence.





McCabe & Mrs. Miller, 1971

In a small, barely developed mining town, a man named McCabe (Warren Beatty) rolls into town and through sheer force of magnetism, determination, and deadly reputation, begins to organize the town into something significant. Before long, brothel madame Mrs. Miller (Julie Christie) arrives and persuades McCabe to front her the cost of opening a high-quality brothel in which they will share the profits. But the town's success attracts a few interested buyers, and they may not be willing to take no for an answer.

I guess the theme of this week's movie watching is 70s film subverting genre expectations. First with Night Moves taking on the detective/noir genre, and now with McCabe and Mrs. Miller upending the Western.

I can see why this film is held in such high regard. From a filmmaking point of view, I have no complaints. I think that what makes it so easy to admire is the fact that it doesn't seem to care all that much what you think about the main characters. It is content to show you their lives and their choices and let you draw your own conclusions. While there are secondary characters who fall more easily into the "good person/bad person" extremes, the two leads are admirably complex.

The film does a great job of conveying how dangerous--and arbitrarily cruel--the semi-tamed west could be. Everyone, in their own way, lives on the edge. It makes intuitive sense the way that the character jockey for control or at times choose to escape as with Mrs. Miller and her opium addiction. The details of the setting--especially seeing the characters' breath--really captures the harsh environment in which they find themselves. It all creates an effect where any moment of silence or calm or gentleness seems like some sort of miracle.

I thought that Beatty and Christie did a great job in their roles, and that the supporting cast were also strong. Everyone in the film brings a sort of grim acceptance to their scenes.

I thought that the soundtrack choices were interesting. At times I wondered if they weren't too modern, but I also have to admit that thematically and tonally they really fit the film and its events.

There's a certain fatalism to the film that did make me antsy at times. I think that it's intentional, so this isn't a flaw, per se. But that restlessness made it hard to stick with the film at points.

Overall an excellent piece of the Western canon. Chalk up another "deservedly classic".

Man, you're just hitting my 70s sweet-spots this week.
I had the same reaction when I watched this, man, it's been 10 years now, I think, but "deservedly classic" was exactly my takeaway. Altman may have been a difficult bastard but he could make a movie that stands out.



10 to midnight (1983) 7/10
Eye for an eye (1981) 6/10 i expected more from this but it seems that code of silence is a much better film on all fronts
I like both of these films for what they are but I think your ratings are probably right on the money.







Curse of the Crimson Altar (The Crimson Cult) - 1968 British horror from Tigon films and very loosely based on the short story, "The Dreams in the Witch House" by HP Lovecraft. Tigon was trying to compete with Hammer and Amicus productions in the field of low budget horror and were also responsible for films like Witchfinder General and The Blood on Satan's Claw among others.

Christopher Lee and Boris Karloff are first billed but they're on screen only part of the time. The actual star is Mark Eden and he plays antiques dealer Robert Manning who, when the film opens, is searching for his missing brother Peter. He has received a letter from Peter that indicates he was visiting the isolated Craxted Lodge in their ancestral town of Greymarsh. When Manning journeys there he finds a bacchanal of sorts going on that he eventually discovers has to do with the anniversary of a witch burning that took place 300 years ago. Lavinia Morley was found guilty of witchcraft and burned at the stake at the prompting of Robert's ancestor. Before dying Lavinia cursed the people of the town and in particular the descendants of her accusers.

It's a talky but somewhat effective supernatural thriller and, while not in the same league as most of Hammer's offerings, still might keep your interest chiefly because of the two old warhorses Karloff and Lee. Painfully thin and plagued by arthritis Karloff was near the end of his career and life and this turned out to be his final movie released during his lifetime. And yet he still manages to imbue his Professor John Marsh with a quiet sort of dignity and his frailty doesn't show in his line readings. Lee was said to have hated this film but like Karloff his professionalism wins out and his role as Lavinia's ancestor is satisfying enough. Seminal horror actress Barbara Steele also manages well in her scenes as Lavinia and another horror mainstay, Michael Gough, acquits himself well in the small role of Lee's attendant Elder.

Maybe not a must-see horror film but if you're any kind of aficionado you'll for sure want to check this off your list.

Ooooh... "The Dreams In The Witch House" is one of my all-time favorite Horror stories, I will definitely add this for October (if it's available to me, of course).



Yeah, I saw this in the theater and thought it outright sucked and was a real low-point for Gene Hackman. Not that he didn't do his job, he always did, but just for him to even dignify that film with his presence.

i was flirting with this idea that enemy of the state is the worst movie ever made, because they clearly used a lot of talent and resources in service of movie that frankley doesn't make much sense. I've crapped on the ocean movies a good bit but they're definetely a lot better than enemy of the state. Basically, i enjoyed the first two scenes. They were well acted by everyone involved (for example, those mobsters were pretty scary), but then I'm like "well wait, what do the mobsters have to do with any of this?" pretty shortly after.


EDIT: It also seems like a lot of people involved in this production don't know anything about the state, which is quite aggravating. Even though the mobster scene is good, if the mobsters were as evil and creepy as they were made out to be in that scene, then they wouldn't be blatantly threatening A LAWYER. Plus, there's that scene:


Will Smith: Do you have a warrant?

Genius Haxxer Kid: oh, he's good!

I guess we should give the mobster ashole a benefit of the doubt: he never has heard of recording devices until he saw that videotape...which so describes real mobsters from that time period!
https://media1.giphy.com/media/I2m7l...iphy.webp&ct=g





Heart of Glass, 1976

In a small town, the owner of a glass factory has died, unexpectedly taking the secret of the town's famed Ruby Glass with him. Unable to conceive of a future without their successful Ruby Glass formula, the owners of the glass factory and the town's residents fall into a sort of living stupor. A local shepherd (Josef Bierbichler) watches events unfold, making ominous-but-accurate predictions about the future.

After I watched this movie I immediately went to read Ebert's review of it (it is one of his Great Movies). Sometimes when I like a movie but can't quite articulate why, I just enjoy reading someone else saying smart, interesting things about it.

Ebert's thoughts on the film actually hew really close to mine: this is a film to be felt more than understood. The great strength of it is in the way that it evokes a very specific mood---some kind of strange intersection between the infinite and the mundane. There are several sequences in which music plays over beautiful scenes of nature. There are also scenes in which a woman dances to no music on a table in a bar. Together, the different scenes make you aware of the long stretch of time and of the small, mundane moments.

The characters in the movie (aside from the shepherd and one of the glass factory owners who is obsessed with finding the missing formula) are incredibly muted and their line delivery is intentionally very flat. Even the characters who stand out a bit speak as if in a haze---or, as I felt watching the film, like people who have already accepted that they are being swept out to sea even as they go through the motions of paddling against the current.

In a handful of conversations about Herzog, it's been asserted that his documentary work outstrips his narrative work. Until this film I would have agreed, but this might be in contention as a favorite film of his. It builds mood and meaning and a unique, dream-like reality.

You have me really intrigued with this.
Probably need to save it for November, when all of my Fantasy/Sci-Fi/Thriller/Horror silliness is out of my system and I can watch something great, but I'm definitely interested.
Your bolded statement certainly resonates with me and is why I have always loved reading movie reviews even when I was a kid and why I actually have the physical volumes of Ebert's Great Movies on my shelf. Movies like Last Year At Marienbad really benefit from hearing someone else talk about them as well.



The Lair of The White Worm 1987
This was one weird film tbh, a cult classic, shame about the cheesy ending in an otherwise really good horror comedyq



Ooooh... "The Dreams In The Witch House" is one of my all-time favorite Horror stories, I will definitely add this for October (if it's available to me, of course).
I should have added a "buyer beware" for Lovecraft fans because you might end up disappointed. The term "loosely based" is part of the film's synopsis but I added the "very" because I couldn't figure out what they meant. There is no Walter Gilman and it's not set in Arkham. There is mention of an accused witch but it's not Keziah Mason. And there certainly isn't any Brown Jenkin. The only thing the film and short story had in common was an attic room but that certainly isn't enough to hang a "loosely based" label on. There might potentially be a good film adaptation to be made but this isn't it. Instead it's like I said, a "somewhat effective" but "not a must-see" horror film. Sorry for getting your hopes up.





Malignant (2021)

A lot of people like this movie, it was given away for free with HBO MAX and I thought about saving it for my Halloween challenge. But man was this crap, I think James Wan went out and tried to make The Room but as a horror film. The film is 2 hours long yet somehow it manages to miss 40-60% of the needed exposition. You have scenes that make no sense to frankly a laughable level, the tone of the film is off-putting to say the least. This is a deliberately terrible film...




I should have added a "buyer beware" for Lovecraft fans because you might end up disappointed. The term "loosely based" is part of the film's synopsis but I added the "very" because I couldn't figure out what they meant. There is no Walter Gilman and it's not set in Arkham. There is mention of an accused witch but it's not Keziah Mason. And there certainly isn't any Brown Jenkin. The only thing the film and short story had in common was an attic room but that certainly isn't enough to hang a "loosely based" label on. There might potentially be a good film adaptation to be made but this isn't it. Instead it's like I said, a "somewhat effective" but "not a must-see" horror film. Sorry for getting your hopes up.
I feel like "buyer beware" is implied for all "Lovecraft adaptations". The things he described and his concepts are understandably challenging to convey on the screen and rare is the Lovecraft adaptation that gets things right (Call Of Cthulhu, obviously, The Resurrected, From Beyond, Dagon, and, even though it's not an actual Lovecraft adaptation per se, In The Mouth Of Madness gets the spirit right; I also enjoyed The Unnamable, for an very low-budget attempt).
I kinda feel like if you capture the main gist of Lovecraft's concept of Horror then I'm pretty happy. Beggars can't be choosers.
And I imagine creating a credible Brown Jenkin in 1968 would've been a challenge.
Michael Gough-starring 60s British Horror That Nods Subtly In The Direction Of Lovecraft is plenty good enough for me.





Malignant (2021)

A lot of people like this movie, it was given away for free with HBO MAX and I thought about saving it for my Halloween challenge. But man was this crap, I think James Wan went out and tried to make The Room but as a horror film. The film is 2 hours long yet somehow it manages to miss 40-60% of the needed exposition. You have scenes that make no sense to frankly a laughable level, the tone of the film is off-putting to say the least. This is a deliberately terrible film...

Man, people are so all over the map with this movie, I guess I'm just gonna have to watch it for myself.



Please Quote/Tag Or I'll Miss Your Responses
The Professor's Beloved Equation - 6/10
Someone recommended me this, and she seemed to have good taste, but it's a shame I wasted the energy to see this and be underwhelmed. It's been about a month or two since I last saw a movie, and this isn't going to help "get back in the saddle again"
The last half-hour is probably the best. The numbers didn't appeal to me, and there wasn't much happening.




Man, people are so all over the map with this movie, I guess I'm just gonna have to watch it for myself.

It's very similar to the late bad Dario Argento films...but it could also be considered Scary Movie 6.



It's very similar to the late bad Dario Argento films...but it could also be considered Scary Movie 6.
Oh crap.
I thought Mother Of Tears was literally one of the worst films I've ever seen.