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All very good movies.
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1st Re-watch...haven't seen too much discussion on this site regarding this movie but I loved it...richly entertaining and endlessly imaginative, featuring Oscar-worthy performances from Taron Egerton and Dallas Bryce Howard.

Fair do's, I'll put my musical differences aside and watch in slow-time.

Nothing will convince me Elton John is anything other than an absolute tool.



Nanoha Reflection (2017)


This is the third movie of the Nanoha fantasy/sci-fi anime franchise. I really like the aesthetic style of this franchise, it is all made by the same animation studio in Japan (Seven Arcs) which maintains aesthetic and narrative consistency. It is kinda like an animated version of the Marvel Cinematic Universe but with girls main characters instead of men and that it takes itself more seriously (there are almost no jokes in these movies, in fact I cannot recall a joke here). I found the plot is a bit predictable by this point (it has many similarities with other Japanese plots) but the animation/direction/aesthetics are all very high quality suff.



Asphalt (1929)




I don't see anywhere that labels this as a noir, but that's exactly what it was as far as I'm concerned. It's the earliest I've seen and the first since I've been prepping for the Pre-30's Countdown. There were points that seemed like time was standing still, but otherwise it was a very good flick.



Nanoha: Detonation (2018)


This movie is actually the second part of Reflection, its similar to Infinity War/Endgame in that sense. So it was unfair of me to rate the previous movie before this? Well, I gave separate ratings to the Lord of the Rings movies so... This gets to a very dramatic climax, in fact I almost cried in some parts. Although since it still has that self conscious reference to the children's genre it was inspired by nobody among the main characters died in the end, including the villain! Except a character that was terminally ill).

8/10



It's based on a children's book series aimed at kids aged 9-12, so I figured the film wasn't intending to be rated higher than that, otherwise it would be excluding the source material's target audience. If it's pushing the PG-13 rating though, that would be a pleasant surprise for me.
Oh yeah, I meant it in the way that it didnít feel like a PG-13 movie at all. I could have seen this being Rated R to be honest.



Professional horse shoe straightener
'Happy as Lazarro' (2019)


A haunting Italian fable / folk tale about a naive, simple young man with nothing but goodness running through his veins, and difficult to review without spoilers.

The film is beautifully shot on 16mm film and there are some wonderful images of rural Italy, especially the drone shots that double up as a helicopter. The casting in this film is impeccable, with the family of all ages played very well by actors that almost appear like accidental extras at some points.

The movie centres around a poor family working on a plantation in a time that isn't easy to put a stamp on, until a character with a mobile phone enters the picture. But this is purposefully done by Director Alice Rohrwacher - as time is a theme central to the film. There is a huge shift towards the middle of the film, which is best left unspoilt, and throughout, our naive, angel-like lead Lazarro seems at one with nature. There's a particular theme showing Lazarro as a wolf howling at the moon (and even one of the characters names literally translates as 'of the moon'. The symbolism, religious and otherwise is heavy. Biblical references are also heavily present, and the plot is almost a re-telling of one of the more famous religious stories.

There is a large dose of "magical realism" involved, and the subtext seems to hint that there are some good people are out there, but if something looks too good to be true - it probably is. Part social critique, part mystical tale telling. It also has something to say on capitalism and how economies shape people. It does end on a happy note, but it goes through some journey to get there.




Weekend re-watches:



40 years after it's original release, this movie still makes me laugh out loud. "You mean I'm gonna stay this color?"






If you're looking for the facts on the life of Fanny Brice, this is not the place to find them, but if you're looking for a richly entertaining musical, get your fill here. This film features maybe the most incredible film debut in history with Barbra Streisand's Oscar-winning performance as Fanny Brice...the ease and power with which she commands the screen completely belies the fact that this was her very first movie. She is in practically every frame of the movie and never once makes you regret it.






Billy Wilder took home three Oscars in 1961 for this 1960 Best Picture Oscar winner which he produced, co-wrote, and directed. This slick and edgy tale of corporate and sexual politics is still razor sharp and masterfully directed and as for the performances...Jack Lemmon's performance was #1 on my list of favorite performances of his and Shirley MacLaine was robbed of the Best actress Oscar, in the performance of her career. Jack Kruschen received a Best Supporting Actor nomination for his compassionate doctor, but that nomination really should have gone to Fred MacMurray, cast radically against type in his best performance ever as the slimy JD Sheldrake. And don't sleep on Ray Walston and Edie Adams either. Everything works here.






Easily the most acclaimed Scorsese/DeNiro collaboration, this is powerhouse moviemaking...a haunting and angry look at PTSD, loneliness, and alienation that scratches at the gut long after the credits roll. I've talked in many reviews about films that provide the "midnight to dawn" atmosphere of New York City, but no film ever did it better than this one. Love the scene with Scorsese as the husband planning to kill his cheating spouse and Travis' encounter with the secret service agent. Another movie staple this one did better than anything was the "suiting up" sequences...the scenes of Travis preparing for his mission...the preparing of the guns and holsters, the taping of the knives to his boots, the practicing drawing his weapons...absolutely mesmerizing. Scorsese, DeNiro, Jodie Foster. and especially Bernard Hermann were ALL robbed of Oscars for their work here...Scorsese wasn't even nominated! WTF? Though I find the ending a little troubling, this is still the cinematic marvel it was in 1976.




The Phantom Of The Opera (Rupert Julian, Lon Chaney, Ernst Laemmle & Edward Sedgwick, 1925)

Manages to belie the troubled creation of a troubled creation



Don't ask me why but I watched the first 4 parts of Friday the 13th over the weekend.

There's no point in rating these, really - to me, they're all essentially the same thing on endless repeat. The first one gets the edge for being slightly more interesting because it was the first, and the shtick was new - I guess. After that, they all just blur in my mind into one monotonous routine with interchangeable annoying teenagers getting killed in a bunch of boring ways.

Friday the 13th -

Other parts -
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