The Personal Recommendation Hall of Fame

Tools    





I’m one of the few who has never liked Fargo since it was first released on vhs more then 20 years ago. I’ve watched it multiple times over the years in an attempt to see if maybe it ever clicks for me but after about 4 watches I’ve decided I just don’t like it. 🤷
I've never been especially fond of it either. I'd much rather watch The Big Lebowski or Burn After Reading.



"Money won is twice as sweet as money earned."



The Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Super Bowl 55 Champs!
I would think a fancy cinamatography style that looked incredible would be ill suited to the subject matter. It should IMO look like a documentary with hand held camera and close range shots. But like I said I haven't seen it in ages, so I'm only speculating.
I totally agree with you but I thought it looked like a high end TV movie. It's hard to explain.

That's weird, it should not be on 100 Cheers list. Did you happen to have the DVD with extras, if so I highly recommend watching them as the full story of the racial genocide in Rwanda is something that's very important and yet most of the world doesn't know about it.
I watched it on Starz




Pépé le Moko
(Julien Duvivier, 1937)



Pépé le Moko is a prime example of poetic realism. Sadly, I never attended film class, so I don't know jack sh*t about poetic realism. However, even my uneducated ass has seen enough films to recognize the influence, both thematically and technique-wise, that this 1937 French film had on the noir genre. Jean Gabin's suave anti-hero establishes an early mold for Bogart's most famous roles, and you can see the echoes of Gabin's style and demeanor reverberating decades later in the collaborations between Jean-Pierre Melville and Alain Delon. The titular character even provided the indirect inspiration for the narcissistic, love-obsessed skunk, Pepé le Pew.

The sloping labyrinth of the Casbah is both home and prison to notorious gangster, Pépé le Moko. Due to the maze-like network of interwoven pathways, safe houses and hidden passages, along with a populace that idolizes and protects him, authorities are unable to apprehend Pépé. Yet if Pépé exits this exotic enclave he exposes himself to incarceration for his past crimes. Complications arise when a Parisian beauty ignites within Pépé an insatiable desire to return to his beloved Paris, regardless of consequences. Unlike Bogart and Bergman in Casablanca, a film which clearly owes a debt to Pépé le Moko, having Paris as only a memory isn't enough.

From the start, every character, every romance, every dream, feels doomed to failure. A resigned sense of fatalism hangs over the proceedings. It's less the promise of tomorrow that fuels these characters, but rather the nostalgic longing of the past, and the flickering hope of reliving faded glories. This sentiment is best exemplified in one of the film's strongest, most melancholic scenes: A chanteuse sings along to a recording from her youth, her voice still just as lovely, but her weathered, beaten-down countenance a stark contrast from the radiant beauty forever young in the dusty photograph behind the gramophone.



Jean Gabin is deservedly iconic in the lead role. Impeccably dressed, smooth in demeanor, tough yet sensitive. The definition of debonair. Despite operating on the wrong side of the law, he possesses his own rigid set of principles. Men want to be him, ladies want to bed him, but do audiences root for him? I felt conflicted about that myself. As the film progresses, Pépé acts with increasing selfishness, his normal stoicism receding to impulsive recklessness. He also treats like crap the woman who loves him. Yet it's impossible not to feel some level of empathy for his character as malaise threatens to eat him alive. Pépé may not reside in a ten-foot cell with bars on the windows, but he's a prisoner nonetheless.

The Casbah setting is essentially a character in itself, providing the film with a unique atmosphere that's teeming with wildly interesting peoples from wide-ranging backgrounds and lifestyles. I was surprised to learn that only a few exterior shots were filmed on location, as the Casbah feels too big and authentic to be a studio recreation, so (fedora) hats off to the production team. I was also taken aback by how fresh the film feels despite its age. I assume the Hays Code didn't apply to foreign films, so it was refreshing to watch a 1937 film that wasn't bogged down with heavy-handed morality, as Pépé le Moko glorifies its gangsters while painting the police as mostly incompetent. I'm now curious to watch the Hollywood remake, Algiers, which also appears to be held in high regard, to see how many details had to be altered to appease the Hays Code.



__________________



I'd never heard of Pépé le Moko until it was nominated in a 1930's Hall of Fame. I went back and read some of the reviews for it and saw that @edarsenal had nominated it. That's enough evidence for me to guess that he nominated it here as well.




Fargo (1996)
My guess: I'm lost at this point, I've forgotten who has confirmed and who hasn't lmao, so uh... Captain Spaulding!
I already confessed to choosing One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest for you. Besides, I'm not a big fan of Fargo. For me, it's mid-tier Coens. I actually prefer the TV series.



I'm glad I'm not the only one in here slacking so far. Gonna try to pick up the pace going forward. I should be receiving Dear Zachary and The Illusionist in the mail within a day or two. (Hopefully COVID-19 doesn't affect Netflix's DVD service.) The Taking of Pelham 123 is airing tonight on TCM, so I've got it set to record. I also found a really good copy of Yellow Sky on YouTube. I plan on watching and reviewing all of those over the next few days.



I already confessed to choosing One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest for you. Besides, I'm not a big fan of Fargo. For me, it's mid-tier Coens. I actually prefer the TV series.
oh duh, of course



I started Near Dark yesterday and plan to finish it today. Hopefully I will have a write-up posted tonight.

That'll have me done until CaptainT's noms are announced.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
I've never been especially fond of it either. I'd much rather watch The Big Lebowski or Burn After Reading.
The Dude Abides!!
LOVE Big Lebowski
It actually took me a couple of watches to appreciate Burn After Reading and I'm so-so with that one.
__________________
They say: that after people make love there's a kind of melancholia, the petite mort, the little death. Well, I'm here to tell you, after a romantic night with yourself there's a very acute sensation of failed suicide. ~Dylan Moran



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?
I'd never heard of Pépé le Moko until it was nominated in a 1930's Hall of Fame. I went back and read some of the reviews for it and saw that @edarsenal had nominated it. That's enough evidence for me to guess that he nominated it here as well.
YOU GUESSED IT!


Though it's not in my review, I thought I had wrote up a bit regarding my previous love for the remake Algiers, that I had never known WAS a remake. Which I was going to nominate until I stumbled across this and found that it put the American remake to shame.
In fact, the French original was bought up by the American studio and was not allowed in the states until a year or more AFTER they remake was distributed.
The remake used a majority of the Casbah locale shots as well as several of the secondary characters from the French original. It starred Hedy Lamaar (whom I ADORE!!) and Charles Boyer, whom I thoroughly enjoy but always felt that there was zero menace in his performance and I had never took him seriously as the man in charge. As opposed to Gabin who WAS Pepe for all his strengths and flaws and after seeing the original I am now unable to even considering watching Algiers without opting, instantly to watching the original instead.

This, along with La Grande Illusion got me hooked on Jean Gabin and got me to watch several other of his films. He is iconic in his presence and his talent.