Rate The Last Movie You Saw

Tools    





Sound of Freedom (2023)

Better than expected. Moral load is heavy handed at times, but that is partially to subject matter. More often than not it is justifiably sentimental, engaging and entertaining, which I appreciate, especially because the movie is low budget. Production money were well spent.



MonteCristo's Avatar
Registered User
Even subpar Howard Hawkes is plenty entertaining. Wayne is in fine form in Rio Lobo, though surrounded by a mostly lightweight cast. Jorge Rivero in particular is about as wooden as it gets. But the familiar Hawksian themes, and women, are present. Beautiful Jennifer O'Neill took flak for her acting ability but I thought she was, well, fine, in more ways than one. She's feisty, spirited and beautiful, and that's all the role requires. Young, musclebound Mike Henry makes an odd villain. He's the same guy who would play Jackie Gleason's dimwitted son just a few years later in Smokey and the Bandit. Going in, I kept waiting for Ricky Nelson or Dean Martin to appear, conflating it with Rio Bravo. This surely isn't as good but I liked it. Time has a way of revealing movies for what they really are.







SF = Z



[Snooze Factor Ratings]:
Z = didn't nod off at all
Zz = nearly nodded off but managed to stay alert
Zzz = nodded off and missed some of the film but went back to watch what I missed
Zzzz = nodded off and missed some of the film but went back to watch what I missed but nodded off again at the same point and therefore needed to go back a number of times before I got through it...
Zzzzz = nodded off and missed some or the rest of the film but was not interested enough to go back over it



Really impressed with Paprika (2006). Best way I can describe it is honestly it's like a whimsical anime of a William F Gibson cyberpunk mystery, but with heart. A new cybernetic device allows therapists to enter their patients' dreams. Researchers start going mad, a rogue therapist steals a prototype, dreams and reality start to merge, things generally get weird. Looks fantastic, would recommend it to anyone interested in anime.









Prospect - 2018 Western tinged scifi starring Pedro Pascal, Jay Duplass and Sophie Thatcher. Set in an unspecified future Damon (Duplass) and his teenage daughter Cee (Thatcher) lead a hardscrabble life with their latest money making venture involving mining for valuable gems on the toxic forest moon Bakhroma Green. They're dropped off in a pod with the plan being to be picked up once the freighter makes it's return journey. But the two immediately run into problems when their ship malfunctions leaving them miles off course. On the way to their rendezvous with a group of mercenary fortune hunters they run into two other prospectors. Loquacious leader Ezra (Pedro Pascal) attempts to strongarm Damon until the concealed Cee shows herself, allowing her father to disarm both men.

There's a sudden act of violence that might well doom the survivors to being marooned on the poisonous planet. But, things being what they are on "The Green", nebulous alliances are forged. Director/writers Zeek Earl and Chris Caldwell focus almost exclusively on the social dynamics over the utilitarian yet effective practical effects. Pascal is his usual affable self but you're never quite sure what his character's true motivations are. The script is lean so there's not much leeway set aside for depth but Thatcher does a fine job as the dark horse protagonist while Pascal holds up his end nicely as the personable rogue archetype. It's not a "big" movie but it largely succeeds at it's modest ambitions.

80/100

I'm a big fan of Prospect. I think that it does interesting things with its world-building and with its characters, and it brings those two strengths together very well in its final act.



The Art of Love (1965)



I never knew this movie existed. Seems somebody wanted a new buddy movie with a new comedy team-up of Dick Van Dyke and James Garner.

It reminded me of that thread we had here about what-if certain actors teamed up for a movie (little did I know, these two already did so).

Allegedly, the movie was a flop. Not that it was bad, but I think the two actors were already too established as comedic leads to have a great chemistry as a team. As I said in my last review where I mentioned James Garner: even when he did drama, I could only view him as humorous. This goes without saying for Van Dyke (since he rarely did drama), but both also seem somehow out of their realm in a buddy comedy.

As far as odd team-ups go, this movie isn't quite as effective as Boeing Boeing (with Tony Curtis & Jerry Lewis from the same year), yet is still enjoyable.

The strength lies more in the plot than the onscreen chemistry, and I'm not one for synopses, BUT... Van Dyke's character is a failing artist who jokingly contemplates suicide so his art might sell. His buddy and roommate (Garner) also jokingly writes a suicide note for the artist, but when the artist disappears, Garner thinks his friend went through with it. Van Dyke's artwork starts to sell like hot cakes and Garner profits, but soon he is accused of Van Dyke's murder (when unbeknown to most, Van Dyke is still alive) and "hilarity" ensues. (I only dozed off a couple times.)

As eye candy we have Elke Sommers and Angie Dickenson, both at their loveliest!

Only a few occasional chuckles, but an overall entertaining premise.

WARNING: "Spoilt" spoilers below
Don't know if this was an intentional homage to Mary Poppins which premiered the previous year in 1964 or just a schtick the studio liked for Dick Van Dyke, but at one point in the movie Van Dyke disguises himself as an elderly man who looks remarkably similar to the elderly banker he played as an alternate role in Mary Poppins.





I forgot the opening line.

By Derived from a digital capture (photo/scan) of the Film Poster/DVD Cover (creator of this digital version is irrelevant as the copyright in all equivalent images is still held by the same party). Copyright held by the film company or the artist. Claimed as fair-use regardless., Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=39331498

Fruitvale Station - (2013)

In Ryan Coogler's Fruitvale Station we get to know Oscar Grant (Michael B. Jordan) - an African-American man with a partner and four-year-old daughter. He's been in prison for drug dealing, has affairs and will fight if provoked - but in general he's a stand-up, friendly guy who is kind to those in need. While unarmed, and forced onto his front with two cops on him, one pulled his gun and shot Oscar in the back - killing him. Obviously excessive force, considering the cops weren't in any danger whatsoever. When we know Oscar as a person, it comes as a great shock to see him killed in this fashion. Instead of a focus on the shooting, this film is more concerned with painting a portrait of the man killed - we meet his mother Wanda (Octavia Spencer) and partner Sophina (Melonie Diaz) along with his whole family. Coogler's screenplay is effective at what it sets out to do, and Jordon can pull of 'likeable' with one hand tied behind his back, which he almost literally does here. While no angel, Grant wasn't the kind of person you'd call dangerous, and his life went on to serve as another example of a need for police reform in the United States - I think police deserve the right to use any force needed in any given situation - but that gun should stay holstered for any but the most dire situations.

8/10


By The poster art can or could be obtained from Miramax Films., Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=11795675

Eagle vs Shark - (2007)

Taika Waititi's first film gave every indication that he had a natural talent for comedy, and an extraordinary instinct for finding what's most funny in any given situation. Here he brings two 'adult-children' together in Lily McKinnon (Loren Horsley) and Jarrod Lough (Jemaine Clement), whose relationship has to overcome the hurdle of Jarrod's immature attitude to life, and his need to seek revenge over Eric (Dave Fane), who used to bully him in school. Consistently funny, well-written and with two fantastic comedic performances from McKinnon and Clement, it's a must-see for fans of Waititi and comedy in general. New Zealand, to Australians, is pretty much what Canada is for Americans - but I'll give them kudos for bringing the world such a freshly creative filmmaker. Eagle vs Shark is sweet, unusual and a low-key comedic classic.

8/10
__________________
Remember - everything has an ending except hope, and sausages - they have two.

Latest Review : Aftersun (2022)





Second attempt at this & got to the end though I missed stuff in the middle. It seemed ok to me though not my cuppa tea. Such a NOISY movie.



A classic of French cinema. How the director got this 5 years old little girl to perform so well in this movie is beyond me. (She actually plays a 4 years old.) Have a hankie nearby for tears.

Had a very hard time finding a streaming venue for this, but found it at last on kinonow.com.
__________________
Iím here only on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays. Thatís why Iím here now.



21. Night of the Living Dead (1990/DVD)



This remake of the 1968 classic was directed by horror special effects legend Tom Savini. I didn't come away very impressed, even by the special effects.

It's mostly the same story with a few big changes to the characters. Tom is now a relative to the owners' of the farmhouse, which gives his character more depth. Judy is Judy Rose for some reason. And the biggest change is to the shell-shocked Barbra, who now becomes an action hero.

The problem is that the characters come off as caricatures. Harry, the selfish man in the basement, is egregiously cartoonish. Barbra is a character out of an action movie. And the gun-toting rednecks at the end are stereotypically dumb and cause a groan-worthy observation.

The middle of Night of the Living Dead is where it really starts to tread water. I know the original takes its time as well, but was there this much hammering? At least half an hour of the runtime is accompanied by the sounds of hammering. There's also a lot of petty arguments that don't add up to much.

Overall, it's interesting to see some changes to the classic movie, but most of them aren't improvements.


22. The City of the Dead (1960/Tubi)



This British film is about a New England town that was cursed by a dying witch in the 17th century and still suffers from her wrath. A college student visits there to study its history and comes under the watchful eye of the mysterious inhabitants.

I love the atmosphere of this movie. The town of Whitewood is dark and gloomy, with secret underground passages and a huge cemetery. There's also a hell of a lot of fog everywhere. Whenever someone is outside, they are at least ankle-deep in fog. I don't know how they drive in that stuff.

The plot of City of the Dead isn't very unique, but there's a development that brings to mind another 1960 thriller. It was unexpected and really brings home how dangerous Whitewood is. Christopher Lee is always welcome as a villain and he does good work. The ending is pretty cheesy, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.






Tales of Halloween - This holiday anthology from 2015 must not have made much of an impression on me because I'd forgotten I'd seen it. The first entry, Sweet Tooth, didn't so much ring a bell as had me convinced they were blatantly ripping off another movie I'd seen. Turns out this was that movie. That's when you know you might be in for some uninspired storytelling. Maybe if they'd cut back on the number of stories they all wouldn't have come off as rushed and kind of meager.

I did like certain small touches such as how most of the characters had the original Night of the Living Dead running in the background and numerous shots of a candy bar with the brand name Carpenter. There's also a reference to the Clover Corp. I'm not even sure I had a favorite story but I guess the one I found passably interesting and winner by default was Friday the 31st in which a Jason Voorhees/Leatherface type has the tables turned and becomes the hunted. If you've got a hankerin' for an anthology spankerin' stick with Trick r' Treat or maybe the V/H/S franchise.

40/100



I forgot the opening line.

By The cover art can or could be obtained from Heritage Auctions., Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=32569149

A Walk to Remember - (2002)

A Walk to Remember seems to have the sole purpose of getting 12-year-olds ready for a life full of bland, cut-and-paste movies with no soul or purpose. It doesn't want to give any young person the expectation that the films they watch in the future will feature performances that dig deep, or have expressive and original melodrama in them. It starts itself off blasting 'Cannonball', by The Breeders, and uses that to falsely imply it's a cool and hip movie, while in all actuality it's about to hold it's hand out for more money for the soundtrack album - which is the only reason 'Cannonball' is there. It features a character who is an unpopular, mostly friendless girl who is probably the most beautiful girl ever to set foot in a high school, and a wild young boy whose sole act of unholy rebellion is to trespass on somebody else's property. It will end up making millions of kids desperately unhappy, because they aren't nearly as attractive as the people in it - without knowing that no kids are that perfect in skin tone, bone structure, make-up and genetics. Nevertheless, many will adore this film, and force their unfortunate boyfriends/girlfriends to watch it with them, over and over and over again. Many will watch it many years later and think to themselves "This is my favourite movie? It's terrible." If it was really bad, then at least it would be somewhat enjoyable, but instead it's like sitting down and eating a meal that consists only of plain rice crackers with no topping or spread on them. It's big pull at the heart didn't move me, I was never 'in' the film at all - it didn't have a single performance I could believe in.

4/10



Please Quote/Tag Or I'll Miss Your Responses
Old Dads - 5/10
After comedy/movies went "woke" I'd say there would be a lot of anti-woke movies that would make a lot of money because of the sub-genre. I like Bill Burr, although I stopped listening to his YouTube (I don't care about sports, or his wife's issues, etc) but it was something to watch at night. I saw it a week ago, but it was so uneventful I forgot about it. Not a sign of a good movie. So mediocre in every way.


Real artists wouldn't bandwagon the currency of the moment and check every topical box or whatever is trending on Twitter. Artists do their own thing and hopefully inspire others to do the same, but I can't think of any older movies I need to see.






Please Quote/Tag Or I'll Miss Your Responses
Rebel Without a Pause - 5/10
I saw this over 20 yrs ago and felt the same way. James Dean sucks as an actor, and copies everything he can from Brando, but because he died, he got the attention, despite making a few movies, none that needed him. Sal Mineo is another annoying sissy.






Old Dads - 5/10
After comedy/movies went "woke" I'd say there would be a lot of anti-woke movies that would make a lot of money because of the sub-genre. I like Bill Burr, although I stopped listening to his YouTube (I don't care about sports, or his wife's issues, etc) but it was something to watch at night. I saw it a week ago, but it was so uneventful I forgot about it. Not a sign of a good movie. So mediocre in every way.

Real artists wouldn't bandwagon the currency of the moment and check every topical box or whatever is trending on Twitter. Artists do their own thing and hopefully inspire others to do the same, but I can't think of any older movies I need to see.
Glad I read your commentary. I had the film on my list, but I think I'll remove it. I like some of Bill Burr's stuff, but the movie sounds like a miss.



Rebel Without a Pause - 5/10
I saw this over 20 yrs ago and felt the same way. James Dean sucks as an actor, and copies everything he can from Brando, but because he died, he got the attention, despite making a few movies, none that needed him. Sal Mineo is another annoying sissy.
This was a landmark picture when it came out. I loved it at the time, and have watched it several times since. I think Dean's best role was in Giant (1956). Sadly he was dead at aged 24 by the time of its release. I was never a big fan of East of Eden (1955). It's a good story but Dean really overacted. There again its subject matter was fresh and rather naughty for the time.

I don't put Dean high on the list of great actors, but he was very magnetic to the youth of the day, and of course had great looks and a boyish nature. He simply resonated as a rebel in that transitional era.

It's the first time I recall ever seeing the Griffith Park Observatory in a picture. When I finally got to visit there in 1959 it was very exciting to imagine where the movie was shot, and where some of the action took place.



I forgot the opening line.

By IMP Awards, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=54045327

The Killing of a Sacred Deer - (2017)

I have further to dig! 2018 film The Favourite was my first Yorgos Lanthimos film, and it gave me little idea what was in store with the more freaky The Lobster (2015) and this film, the most horror oriented of his I've seen so far. There are four Greek films which precede these - which I look forward to seeing. Right from the start, it's obvious that this exists in a world not quite the same as ours. Characters all speak in precise ways, and in an unemotional manner - it makes for a very different experience, but doesn't have an obvious bearing on the story itself. In it heart surgeon Steven Murphy (Colin Farrell) has a strange kind of close relationship with the son of a former patient of his, Martin Lang (Barry Keoghan) - at first I thought they were lovers, but he introduces the boy to his family, consisting of wife Anna (Nicole Kidman), son Bob (Sunny Suljic) and daughter Kim (Raffey Cassidy). Martin looks to be after one of two things, for one reason, the result of which makes it the strange horror movie it turns out being. For all I know everyone who's reading this has seen it, but I don't want to give anything away. This demands to be seen blind. It had that part of my brain which kicks off a party in my mind when inspired with all the lights on and music blaring - in other words I was really engaged and excited from seeing such an original and enjoyable movie.

8/10




By IMP Awards, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=54045327

The Killing of a Sacred Deer - (2017)

I have further to dig! 2018 film The Favourite was my first Yorgos Lanthimos film, and it gave me little idea what was in store with the more freaky The Lobster (2015) and this film, the most horror oriented of his I've seen so far. There are four Greek films which precede these - which I look forward to seeing. Right from the start, it's obvious that this exists in a world not quite the same as ours. Characters all speak in precise ways, and in an unemotional manner - it makes for a very different experience, but doesn't have an obvious bearing on the story itself. In it heart surgeon Steven Murphy (Colin Farrell) has a strange kind of close relationship with the son of a former patient of his, Martin Lang (Barry Keoghan) - at first I thought they were lovers, but he introduces the boy to his family, consisting of wife Anna (Nicole Kidman), son Bob (Sunny Suljic) and daughter Kim (Raffey Cassidy). Martin looks to be after one of two things, for one reason, the result of which makes it the strange horror movie it turns out being. For all I know everyone who's reading this has seen it, but I don't want to give anything away. This demands to be seen blind. It had that part of my brain which kicks off a party in my mind when inspired with all the lights on and music blaring - in other words I was really engaged and excited from seeing such an original and enjoyable movie.

8/10
You know, I would have never in a million years said Farrell's name if asked for someone who is a perfect fit for Lanthimos's writing, but I think that he nails the tone of the dialogue every dang time. Every word out of his mouth is walking the line of pathetic, deranged, and hilarious. The rest of the cast is really good as well, but Farrell just absolutely walks away with this movie for me.