Return of the RECENT VIEWING

..and why not?
User avatar
PENK
Midnight to Six Man
Posts: 33665
Joined: 07 Aug 2004, 20:12
Location: Stockholm

Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby PENK » 23 May 2010, 21:56

90 pages on the last thread: time for a new one?

Image

A great little film about a pair of hitmen hiding out - for reasons they and we are not made immediately aware of - in Bruges following a botched job in London.
A mix of gangster thriller, black comedy and cultural tour, the film is boosted by sharp dialogue, vibrant action, glowing scenery and strong performances from the leads: Colin Farrell might be limited but he's very good at being Colin Farrell, while Brendan Gleeson is reliable and Ralph Fiennes, dodgy accent notwithstanding, is convincingly cracked.
It also has an unpredictable plot, which doesn't rush to reveal details, an entertaining tongue-in-cheek approach to gangster film clichés (especially relevant given the hopeless wave of such films that followed in the wake of Guy Ritchie's success) and one of the strangest dwarves-and-hookers scenes ever seen on celluloid. Above all, it's a clever and original take on the old "honour among thieves" theme, which, despite occasionally opting for humour at the wrong time and relying on one or two rather neat coincidences, is also one of the more funnier comedies and more gripping thrillers of recent years.
Darkness_Fish wrote:One slight disappointment was that there turns out to be two cinemas in Bolton

Lemon Yoghourt
Posts: 6625
Joined: 28 May 2008, 13:40

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Lemon Yoghourt » 23 May 2010, 23:29

Image

User avatar
mentalist (slight return)
under mi sensi
Posts: 14248
Joined: 17 Jul 2003, 10:54
Location: Sydney
Contact:

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby mentalist (slight return) » 24 May 2010, 00:51

Image
king of the divan

User avatar
Still Baron
Diamond Geezer
Posts: 41976
Joined: 18 Jul 2003, 05:38
Location: Impregnable Citadel of Technicality

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Still Baron » 24 May 2010, 03:05

I started Season 2 of Deadwood this weekend. The first two episodes are a part I/II affair and for the first half of the second episode I was starting to wonder whether LoL's idea to blow if off wasn't a good notion. But my faith was restored. I'll check out more episodes when I'm back from California and I'm pretty stoked.
take5_d_shorterer wrote:If John Bonham simply didn't listen to enough Tommy Johnson or Blind Willie Mctell, that's his doing.

User avatar
Geezee
Posts: 11882
Joined: 24 Jul 2003, 10:14
Location: Where joy divides into vision

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Geezee » 24 May 2010, 09:35

saw these two on a flight yesterday...they form quite a nice twosome. Clearly, Sex & Drugs is something special - very well crafted movie, and the lead performance really is astounding. the focus of attention shifting onto Baxter is very interesting - i wasn't expecting that essentially it was trying to create a father & son tale. And on the other hand, watching andy's serkis' utterly convincing performance leaves one wanting a bit more from the lead in Nowhere Boy. yes, it is unfair to compare the two, but the lack of resemblance, coupled with his total lack of seeming age parity with anyone else, really brought the film down a notch or two. it's even worse with McCartney i think...and perhaps i'm wrong but he comes across as far more of a weasel than actually seems in real life. There are some genuinely moving moments - particularly between John and Paul actually, but of course also with Julia and Aunt Mimi - but i'm not sure i'm 100% convinced.

Image

Image
Smilies are ON
Flash is OFF
Url is ON

Bungo the Mungo

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Bungo the Mungo » 24 May 2010, 14:02

Over the last few days:

Image

Image

Image

I hit gold! All thoroughly enjoyable, especially the Fassbinder, which is one of the best I've seen from him.


Also lots of these:

Image

Despite Lipton's dreadful obsequity, I was rivetted. The best was with Dustin Hoffman, who cried a lot and at the same time showed a bit of rage. He was the most forthcoming and sincere of the lot, actually - and some great anecdotes. DeNiro's was good but just a little disappointing (he's not a very interesting person), Michael Caine threw in some showbiz cliches but was still interesting.

The Modernist

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby The Modernist » 24 May 2010, 18:20

Image

Les Valseuses (Bertrand blier 1974)

There was always a provocative, iconoclastic edge to the French New Wave and in Les Valseuses Blier seems to have wanted to up the ante, taking the rebellious attitudes of a sixties Godard and launching it into the seventies with a massive 'fuck you!'

Les Valseuses is a fairly slight story of two drifting hoodlums, Pierrot (another Godard nod presumably) and Jean-Claude, who spend their time robbing and sexually assaulting those they come across with a bemused nonchalance. It introduced French cinema to the coruscating presence of Gerard Depardieu who plays the tough, assertive Jean-Claude, equally impressive is Patrick Dewaere as the neurotic, supercharged Pierrot. Dewaere turned in a succession of electrifying roles in 70's French cinema, but sadly took his own life in the early eighties. Les Valseuses itself was something of a cause célèbre, causing outrage at the time of its release but proving hugely popular with young audiences.

It's a curious film viewed today. It has the kind of winking, whimsical nature of a lot of Gallic light comedy, but then you have to remind yourself we are being asked to laugh at sexual assault or casual violence directed against women. In fact it reminded me of nothing less than Butch Cassady and the Sundance Kid, had Newman and Redford been injected with the amoral perversity and nihilistic impulses of Alex and his Droogs. Which is all very 1970's when you think about it.

I was also reminded of Andreas Baader. Baader's revolutionary war against bourgeois Germany ultimately seemed less ideologically inspired than a psychotic expression of some existential need to impose himself on the world. Likewise while Les Valseuses eschews overt politics, this is very much a post-68 film. The targets of Jean-Claude and Pierrot are the petit-bourgeoisie, the sexually "uptight" in the lexicon of the times, and the suffocating normality of small town France. Their first act of kindness ( itself coming as a relief after the cruelty of much of their actions) is towards a women (played by the iconic Jeanne Moreau, and including a ménage à trois which is a clear homage to the much earlier Jules et Jim ) who finds herself abandoned on her release from a long prison sentence.

It's a very uncomfortable watch at times, especially some early scenes where they trap and terrorise a series of women. Even within the context of the macho sexual politics of the time, this is pretty offensive stuff. Yet there is something very watchable about Les Valseuses, the sheer energy of the performances (and as well as Moreau, we have early appearances from Miou-Miou and Isabella Hupert) combined with its intoxicated, freewheeling structure which sees the film jump from place to place with wild abandon and little regard for causal narrative, make quite an impression.
Whilst this film was a late product of the counterculture, it's really punk cinema in many ways anticipating that movement's confrontational shock values. Not exactly likeable, but uniquely memorable and very much charged with the spirit of the times.

User avatar
the masked man
Schadenfreude
Posts: 26602
Joined: 21 Jul 2003, 12:29
Location: Peterborough

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby the masked man » 24 May 2010, 20:06

Image

Control

This didn't really work, unfortunately. While Anton Corbijn's tribute to the Joy Division frontman is clearly a labour of love, it fails to give an incisive account of what Ian Curtis was like. The film always keeps a respectful distance from its subject, and that's a big problem.

Of course, it's questionable whether there was sufficient incident in the short life of the singer to fill up a two-hour film. Even so, I was struck by how superficial the early stages are - it whizzes through the formation of Joy Division, and gives little insight into why these four men decided to form a band. Likewise, there's little attempt to explain the importance of the band's music - casual filmgoers, with little knowledge of JD's cultural significance, would find no explanation of how the band fitted into the post-punk musical environment. Nor would they understand why this film is so timely, given that their massive influence on future musical generations also remains undiscussed.

From the point of view of this fan, there was plenty of sloppiness to endure. There were obvious historical inaccuracies (for example, Curtis did not actually know Barney and Hooky when the Sex Pistols played Manchester) and unsatisfactory casting. Almost no-one looks like the person they're portraying; in the lead role, Sam Riley looks disturbingly like Pete Doherty, while Craig Parkinson portrays Tony Wilson as a bizarre Wildean fop. On the other hand, at least the band can play properly, and their recreations of live performances prove the principal reason to stick with the film initially; these are designed with a fine eye for detail, and are genuinely exciting to watch.

But is this enough? The film certainly looks good, with clean, gleaming monochrome images, but perhaps this is overdone. One repeated image sees Curtis trudging up a Macclesfield street to his house, the scene symbolising a dead-end provincial life. However, Corbijn can't help sabotaging this mood by ensuring a beautiful Peak District backdrop is always in shot; this just looks too pretty to establish the required mood.

The film does, however, improve in the second half, and it's largely to the female roles. Initially struggling with an underwritten role playing Curtis' widow, Samantha Morton finally shows show effective actorly fireworks in the later stages. Even better is the astonishingly sexy Romanian actress Alexandria Maria Lara as Belgian temptress Annik Honoré. I feel a picture is in order:

Image

Blimey. Anyway, she has real chemistry in her scenes with Riley, and these quiet scenes ultimately provide the best moments of the film. (Of course, it's unsurprising that they work well together, given that they later got married in real life...)

So the film is something of a mixed bag. As a portrayal of a complex icon in British rock, it's a failure, and, for that, you'd be better off watching Grant Gee's magnificent documentary Joy Division instead. Yet the final scenes do present a believable and touching portrait of a man stuck way out of his depth. So, despite my disappointment with some aspects of the film, I did feel it was worth watching.

The Modernist

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby The Modernist » 24 May 2010, 20:47


User avatar
PENK
Midnight to Six Man
Posts: 33665
Joined: 07 Aug 2004, 20:12
Location: Stockholm

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby PENK » 24 May 2010, 21:03

Darkness_Fish wrote:One slight disappointment was that there turns out to be two cinemas in Bolton

User avatar
trans-chigley express
Posts: 16717
Joined: 11 Nov 2003, 01:50
Location: Asia's WC

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby trans-chigley express » 24 May 2010, 23:42

Image
The Ophanage.

Never heard of this but picked it up in an HMV sale and what a gem. Creepy as hell, deeply disturbing and painfully sad. Beautifully filmed too. Stays with you long after it's finished.

User avatar
Mr Maps
a drunk in a midnight choir
Posts: 14118
Joined: 16 Jul 2003, 19:07
Location: The City of Trees in Canada's Ocean Playground

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Mr Maps » 25 May 2010, 12:30

Charles Arse wrote:Also lots of these:

Image

Despite Lipton's dreadful obsequity, I was rivetted. The best was with Dustin Hoffman, who cried a lot and at the same time showed a bit of rage. He was the most forthcoming and sincere of the lot, actually - and some great anecdotes. DeNiro's was good but just a little disappointing (he's not a very interesting person), Michael Caine threw in some showbiz cliches but was still interesting.


This show was great in the early years, despite Lipton's being so effusive and fawning. But when it moved from The New School Actor's studio to Pace University it went down hill fast.
Initially the audience were 3rd and 4th year acting students and the questions were about the craft but when it became popular the audience were regular people and it became like any other chat show. They were running out of worthwhile guests too. I mean, Martin Lawrence?

This;
Image
Was better than Control.

My week with Rutger Hauer.
I spent some time with him on set this week and then there was a public screening of this;
Image
after which he did a great Q&A. Really enjoyed the film.
Then I finally got around to watching the director's cut of this;
Image
I had never seen any version of it before and I found it a bit dull to be honest.
nathan wrote:I realize there is a time and a place for unsexy music, but I personally have no time for it.


Django wrote: It's video clips of earnest post-rock I want, and I have little time for anything else.

19th biggest tosser on BCB

User avatar
Snarfyguy
Dominated by the Obscure
Posts: 52023
Joined: 21 Jul 2003, 19:04
Location: New York

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 25 May 2010, 14:38

Image

I gather this received mixed reviews. I consider it an unqualified success.

It's a good, old fashioned "head movie" in which the performances and story match the strength of the eye-popping visuals. Who's got a problem with that?

I loved the jarring juxtapositions of the faded glamour of the show the central characters mount with their surroundings in a very ordinary looking London.

Among other things. Plenty to enjoy here.
Jimbo wrote:Look, all I know is pretty much what I get from Robert Parry over at Consortium News.

The Modernist

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby The Modernist » 25 May 2010, 18:17

Mr Maps wrote:
My week with Rutger Hauer.
I spent some time with him on set this week .


Tell us more!
I'm a big Hauer fan, he's been great in just about everything I've seen him in. If you ever get a chance to see "Legend of the Holy Drinker" do, it's not very well known at all, but it's a quite magical film and he's great in it.

User avatar
Mr Maps
a drunk in a midnight choir
Posts: 14118
Joined: 16 Jul 2003, 19:07
Location: The City of Trees in Canada's Ocean Playground

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Mr Maps » 25 May 2010, 19:58

keith jennings wrote:
Mr Maps wrote:
My week with Rutger Hauer.
I spent some time with him on set this week .


Tell us more!
I'm a big Hauer fan, he's been great in just about everything I've seen him in. If you ever get a chance to see "Legend of the Holy Drinker" do, it's not very well known at all, but it's a quite magical film and he's great in it.


Around the time that Tarantino and Rodriguez released the Grindhouse double feature Death Proof and Planet Terror they had a contest at SXSW. Applicants made a trailer for a non existent grindhouse style film and the winner gets cash and some fancy film equipment and to meet the two above mentioned directors.
Some guys I know entered and won with their trailer for Hobo with a Shotgun.

They have since got funding and a few days ago wrapped making the film in their Trailer.
The spoke with a few people for the lead including Ian McShane but decided on Rutger Hauer.

He's nuts, brilliant, funny and exciting to be around.
I wish I had his energy at my age let alone his.
nathan wrote:I realize there is a time and a place for unsexy music, but I personally have no time for it.


Django wrote: It's video clips of earnest post-rock I want, and I have little time for anything else.

19th biggest tosser on BCB

User avatar
the masked man
Schadenfreude
Posts: 26602
Joined: 21 Jul 2003, 12:29
Location: Peterborough

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby the masked man » 25 May 2010, 20:40

Image

Lourdes

Although Austrian cinema has an increasing profile these days, it's hard not to feel dismayed by the stern misanthropy that seems to guide directors like Michael Haneke and Ulrich Seidl. Therefore, the gentle humanism displayed by Jessica Hausner in her subtle film about religious pilgrims, looking for a miracle at Lourdes, is to be applauded.

It focuses on a young French woman paralysed by Multiple Sclerosis, played by the excellent Sylvie Testud. Taken by her mother to the Pyrenean resort, her approach is somewhat pragmatic - she frankly admits that she attends pilgrimages mostly because it gives her the chance to travel. Indeed, Hausner's controlled and unhurried style downplays the spiritual element of the whole experience. As her camera picks the queues of pilgrims passing a souvenir shop as they wait to enter the baths, the location resembles an airport rather than a place of devotion and worship.

Although drama eventually occurs, it's more a satisfying film of small moments. One interesting point is that it's hard to tell what her viewpoint is about the strand of Catholicism. At various points, different characters are allowed to express their personal philosophies without the director applying an editorial filter. She certainly trusts her actors, and they respond with performances that match the subtlety of the direction - as much is communicated through gestures as through speech. In particular, I was pleased to see a major role for Elina Löwensohn, a Romanian actress who was a sparky presence in 90s US indie cinema (Simple Men,Amateur, Nadja) and never really built the career she deserved. Now approaching middle age, she's developed a commanding sense of hauteur, here playing a strict and moralistic nun.

The film is ultimately a portrait of souls attempting to find their way in the metaphysical darkness, trying to find answers but only discovering ambiguity. It's a haunting piece that stays with you.

User avatar
mentalist (slight return)
under mi sensi
Posts: 14248
Joined: 17 Jul 2003, 10:54
Location: Sydney
Contact:

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby mentalist (slight return) » 26 May 2010, 13:35

king of the divan

User avatar
Snarfyguy
Dominated by the Obscure
Posts: 52023
Joined: 21 Jul 2003, 19:04
Location: New York

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 26 May 2010, 21:18

Image

Amusing.
Jimbo wrote:Look, all I know is pretty much what I get from Robert Parry over at Consortium News.

User avatar
Mr Maps
a drunk in a midnight choir
Posts: 14118
Joined: 16 Jul 2003, 19:07
Location: The City of Trees in Canada's Ocean Playground

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Mr Maps » 26 May 2010, 21:32

Damning with faint praise?
nathan wrote:I realize there is a time and a place for unsexy music, but I personally have no time for it.


Django wrote: It's video clips of earnest post-rock I want, and I have little time for anything else.

19th biggest tosser on BCB

User avatar
Snarfyguy
Dominated by the Obscure
Posts: 52023
Joined: 21 Jul 2003, 19:04
Location: New York

Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 26 May 2010, 22:03

Mr Maps wrote:Damning with faint praise?

Sort of, I guess. It was pretty slight.
Jimbo wrote:Look, all I know is pretty much what I get from Robert Parry over at Consortium News.