25th Hall of Fame

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I haven't posted my thoughts about my own movie yet, so here they are:

Chimes at Midnight -


I really enjoyed Orson Welles' study of the relationships Prince Hal (Keith Baxter) has with his real father, Henry IV (John Gielgud) and his drinking buddy and "other" father, Falstaff (excellently played by Welles himself). While less popular than Welles' other works, it is just as great and as technically accomplished as his best. I was particularly impressed by the battle between Henry V and Hotspur's forces, which is just as exciting as any battle in Game of Thrones. You can definitely see why Falstaff appealed so much to Welles because the character's relationship to the monarchy closely resembles Welles' soured relationship with Hollywood. While the film's swooping camerawork and editing wizardry call too much attention to themselves from time to time and the Shakespearean dialogue is sometimes dense, not to mention hard to hear at times (subtitles are recommended), Prince Hal's journey is still a joy to follow and the conclusion packs a wallop.
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Last Great Movie Seen
Blow Out (De Palma, 1981)




The Green Years (Paulo Rocha 1963)

I'm impressed. This is my first Portuguese new wave film and there's much that I appreciated. Some might say there's little insight into the characters and their motives, but to me that screenshot says it all.

Dialogue and character deposition aren't necessary when the look in the character's eyes can explain more than words ever could...That screenshot perfectly encapsulates the emotional conflict of the couple.

The director intentionally keeps his distance from the story, as this is not a first hand telling, but a second hand telling by the uncle. Thus the lives of the young couple are seen as an impression through the eyes of the jaded uncle. I think that's brilliant film making.

There's been a lot said about some of the editing. Yes, it's a bit jarring at times. But that isn't a negative for me. I image shooting in the city presented special problems for the director with people walking into the frame ruining shots.

The cinematography: the way the camera moves, the way the director composes his scenes, the spacial distances and the angle of view...all magnificent. So many personable shots out of a window...and tracking shots that give movement to the story. Very nice.



A couple people mentioned the copy of the movie they watched had poor video quality. I understand how that can effect one's enjoyment of a film, it does effect me. Luckily I found a fully restored version that looked as good as new...and that quality made me appreciate the city-scape-cinematography. Much of the appeal of this film is the creative use of Lisbon. In a way the city itself is a character.

The one drawback for me is the ending, which felt tacked on so that the story could wrap up and the audience would have something to talk about afterwards. I'd preferred if the ending was earned by the movie's story and not just done for added 'flair'.

I prefer this ending: Julio knocks on the door and ask to see the maid, his girlfriend Iiad. When Iiad comes to the door, Julio stares at her and holds out his hand. In his hand is a photograph of Iiad. Iiad looks confused and hurt...Julio after standing motionlessly, turns his back to her and slowly walks away. The camera cuts to an exterior shot from a roof top angle and we see the figure of Julio walking down an empty street. The end.



Themroc (1973) -


This wasn't an easy watch, but even though it's a hard film to recommend, I did enjoy a couple things about it and thought it was competently directed.

To get my issues out of the way, I thought many scenes dragged on for too long. While the film became more watchable and focused once Themroc started destroying his apartment, I also thought many scenes throughout the final hour or so could've been tightened up. The initial conflict with the police, Themroc interfering with a man laying bricks outside his apartment, and the final scene made for some nice humor, but I didn't find these scenes as humorous as the movie did. More often than not, sequences like these overstayed their welcome, in part due to the film's one dimensional themes. I also didn't care for the frequent female nudity. The constant nude shots of Themroc's sister were unnecessary and got tiring after a while. In fact, the film contained no male nudity to balance any of this out. Like, yeah, there were a few scenes where it showed some male actors with no clothes on, but they were only shown from the waist up, at most.

In spite of those issues though, I'd still give this film a loose recommendation. As mentioned earlier, its themes on rebelling against society are one dimensional, but I did find the exploration of this one dimension amusing at times, with its one note constantly increasing in weirdness as it rolled along. My favorite part of the final hour was watching Themroc's apartment and the streets below him grow progressively more beaten up and polluted. It recalled the second part of Tie Xi Qu: West of the Tracks with how this progression made the film feel post-apocalyptic. I also found the incompetence of the police quite humorous, failing to stop Themroc multiple times and oftentimes simply standing around as he and his neighbors destroyed more things.

Overall, while this film is flawed, I enjoyed enough about it to think it was competent. I don't know of many people I'd recommend this to, but if you enjoy these kinds of films, I'd recommend giving it a go.

Next up: The Truth



A couple people mentioned the copy of the movie they watched had poor video quality. I understand how that can effect one's enjoyment of a film, it does effect me. Luckily I found a fully restored version that looked as good as new...and that quality made me appreciate the city-scape-cinematography. Much of the appeal of this film is the creative use of Lisbon. In a way the city itself is a character.
That's pretty cool that you found that version. Could you explain, then, what happened
WARNING: spoilers below
between the confrontation at the dance hall and the awkwardly silent departure afterwards?



That's pretty cool that you found that version. Could you explain, then, what happened
WARNING: spoilers below
between the confrontation at the dance hall and the awkwardly silent departure afterwards?
I didn't find a longer version, I found a version with really good video quality...as opposed to blurry images.



I didn't find a longer version, I found a version with really good video quality...as opposed to blurry images.
Ah, gotcha. At this point, I'm just going to assume that a "do you mind if we dance with your dates?" moment a la Animal House happened and not worry about it any more.



Ah, gotcha. At this point, I'm just going to assume that a "do you mind if we dance with your dates?" moment a la Animal House happened and not worry about it any more.
Ha could be!

I'm thinking as The Green Years was minimalist, nothing much happened at all with the working girls



The Green Years



To me watching this was like eating plain oatmeal. I needed more flavor and texture. I wasn't really overly impressed with anything, but the camerawork was pretty good. The story just felt so discombobulated that I never could really get into it and was more worried about the films runtime passing then being interested in what's going on. To me that's the most frustrating experience to watching film but in honesty it just is what it is. I think having more interesting characters could have made the movie more appealing. And as pretty much everyone has said that ending came out of nowhere and I wasn't a huge fan.




The thing isolated becomes incomprehensible
Much of the appeal of this film is the creative use of Lisbon. In a way the city itself is a character.
If one person got this, I'm already happy! That is, in my opinion, the main strength of the film. As someone who knows Lisbon quite well, because I lived there for a year, it's insane how well the energy and light of the city are so present in The Green Years.



If one person got this, I'm already happy! That is, in my opinion, the main strength of the film. As someone who knows Lisbon quite well, because I lived there for a year, it's insane how well the energy and light of the city are so present in The Green Years.
Good nom, Neiba. I also like Jim Jarmusch as many of his films feature impressive city-scape-cinematography. I like to see interesting backgrounds in movie scenes. With current Hollywood films, you just don't get much that's real anymore & interesting.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
Only Lovers Left Alive has a great representation of that statement, CR. Bouncing back and forth from Detroit to Tangier.
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If one person got this, I'm already happy! That is, in my opinion, the main strength of the film. As someone who knows Lisbon quite well, because I lived there for a year, it's insane how well the energy and light of the city are so present in The Green Years.
That's pretty cool. I hope your experience was better than Júlio's in the movie!
I'm a lifelong suburbanite and have never lived in a major city, so I'm jealous. Who knows, maybe someday.



5 left
Rewatches of Long Goodbye, About Elly and Vertigo

First time watches of Themroc and Sundays and Cybelle



cricket's Avatar
Registered User
American Movie



This was my second time watching this. The first was a few years ago and I believe it scored very high on my documentary countdown ballot. I didn't think I'd like it as much this time around but I loved it. The whole go for your dreams thing is great but I'm more into it for it's look at that part of America. I'm originally from that part of the country and these people remind me of my family in every way. I'd probably look and talk like that had I not moved to Boston as a teen. It's good in a lot of ways when everything is more simple and easygoing. I like all of the characters and I laughed a lot.

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Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?



Vertigo 1958

Gavin Elster: Scottie, do you believe that someone out of the past - someone dead - can enter and take possession of a living being?

Here's a huge Hitchcock twist. . . I was kinda so-so on this.

To those who know me and the high grades I usually give to any Hitchcock film or even when someone uses a Hitchcockian style to their films. I'm always pretty much on board and enthusiastic as hell. Now, while I could use the excuse that the bar was set far too high, I truly believe that that was not the issue.

It was the messy use of lighting throughout. It was like watching someone who was far more comfortable doing B&W and continued doing things that way instead of adjusting things to accommodate Color. Which, with all the "effects," took on a very amateur look for me. Appearing like the first attempt by a College graduate emulating Hitchcock. Definitely not something I would expect in a film so far into his career. A career that is, rightfully so, praised for technical prowess and ingenuity.

I'm also inclined with the critics of the time; Jimmy Stewart should not have been in this. More specifically, when it came to the romantic scenes with Kim Novak (who was stunning). While the twenty-odd year difference was a bit off, it is a common enough thing that I skipped past that. It was the severe lack of chemistry when they kissed. It looked like two people being smooshed together who had no wish/desire to be.


Much like the lighting, it misfired, utterly for me. It wasn't passionate; it was the facade of looking passionate and failing.


Which, being a fan that has only truly begun to delve into this man's craft and a number of his great's that I have always been fascinated with since childhood, truly sucks.
I mean, the first third of the film was pretty spot on with everything working as befitting a sordid, sexually taut Hitchcock thriller. From the opening chase scene on the rooftops - its fleeting moments of the clumsy lighting that would later cause more harm than the effect for me - I was very much enrapt in the story and the characters. Scottie's (Jimmy Stewart) "trailing" of Kim Novak's Madeline and her mysterious blacking out was ideal Hitchcock fodder, and I was, seriously, loving this. To the point that even after what I felt as serious "flaws," the twists remain [email protected] good ones.
WARNING: "I must admit --" spoilers below
I would have preferred if it was Scottie that died and not Madeline/Judy at the end.
He was such a d#ck due to his obsession and insistence that she transforms back to the lie instead of discovering who she truly was, angered me to no end.
I get the being pissed at being so expertly fooled, but attacking the gun instead of the one who wielded it? D#ck move.


To delve a little bit into the obsessive, to the point of abusive manner that Scottie demands that Judy change how she truly looks back to what Madeline looked like made me wonder if it mirrored Alfred Hitchcock's own demanding obsession with the Ideal Blonde Woman that I remember hearing about some decades past when it came to the continuous Leading Woman in so many of his films.

What sucks, even more, is: I am very afraid that more viewings would not change what should have been another addition to a great Hitchcock film and isn't, for me.
It remains a "Must See" film in my eyes, and I AM glad I FINALLY saw this.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
Alrighty, with the last-minute crossing the finish line that is my norm for the Asian and Foreign Themed Personal Rec HoFs, I am back. Not sure what, but I will be watching something today and maybe - maybe mind you, get another review out this evening.

We'll see.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
Going with Sundays And Cybele.
Twenty-four minutes in and I am LOVING the cinematography. The composition is pure craftsman. I must admit, for the first ten to fifteen minutes I was pondering: "Why, Alfie? Why! You KNOW this! You GOT this! ...why?"

Pausing now to go out to a Metropark. My roomie will be sunning, and I'll be taking photos of a "Crane Island" from the far side of a small lake. The usual shot being right off of the parking lot/entrance to the Nature Center/Trails.
And will pick this up this evening.

Review posting tonight: iffy, I gotta tell ya

POSSIBLE SPOILER
Still - love this film. The build-up between the two of them is quite lovely. I've paused on their first outing and she cries over her father's abandonment.
Very intrigued on, along with possible reactions to how it all unfolds/results, but the very film itself.
High marks so far.