Return of the RECENT VIEWING

..and why not?
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby SWIMMING POOL HARRINGTON » 28 Nov 2018, 16:14

$P.Muff$ wrote:
The Bulfine Papers (1917) wrote:One: there's film of him doing improv and his reactions to other people's lines are insanely fast and funny. To be that fast AND that funny without knowing in advance what he was going to be hit with indicates a very special mind. It worked like no other I can think of.


Copious amounts of cocaine played a huge role in his spitfire wit. I always found him extremely annoying, but I don't doubt that he was a very smart individual.


The cocaine might account for the speed at which he operated, but not his wit. That was something he was born with - and this is evidenced by the documentary. And anyway he was clean for much of his career.

I get the 'annoying' thing, I really do. I used to feel the same way. I'm sure he was hard work at times. But you realise he was a fine actor and quite often he played it very subtly - he wasn't always off on a tear (maybe he's most famous for those roles - Mork and Mindy, Good Morning Vietnam). And his kids speak of how much fun, and how loving he was.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby $P.Muff$ » 28 Nov 2018, 16:23

Thing is, even if he was sober (and I'm not trying to denigrate drug users, I am one) he always reminded me of a cokehead. They get on my nerves. I'm a chill kinda guy. But yeah, I imagine having him for a father would have been a hoot.

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby the masked man » 28 Nov 2018, 18:22

Matt Wilson wrote:
Geezee wrote:I wonder about that - what's the evidence for him being a once-in-a-generation comic genius? He certainly had his moments. But I wonder how docs like that handle the undeniably saccharine, awful side of his work. We saw the Whitney Houston doc recently and while it does occasionally highlight the fact that she was effectively producing sugary, meaningless pop, there is no real critical appraisal of this - instead just her fans lavishing praise on her brilliance and plenty of talk of the records she broke. I can imagine something similar with Robin Williams. I mean do they in any way delve into the fact that this man is responsible for some of the worst movies of all time?


Why would he be responsible for them? He didn't write the parts. Plenty (all?) of great actors have made shit films. Does that make them 'responsible?' Filmmaking is a collaborative process and no one has a perfect record of successes.


He chose the roles, and has responsibility for that. It's a similar story with De Niro, who in his later years has made a pile of utterly terrible movies, ruining the memory of his early career. Whereas someone like Jeff Bridges has chosen roles very well and has very few cinematic clunkers on his CV.

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 28 Nov 2018, 19:39

Image

Wreck it Ralph 2: Ralph Breaks the Internet

An orgy of brand and product placement, this was redeemed by a sweet story, although it had a tendency to get a bit lost in the weeds of its own conceit. Needless to say, the little one enjoyed it.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Matt Wilson » 28 Nov 2018, 19:44

the masked man wrote:
Matt Wilson wrote:
Geezee wrote:I wonder about that - what's the evidence for him being a once-in-a-generation comic genius? He certainly had his moments. But I wonder how docs like that handle the undeniably saccharine, awful side of his work. We saw the Whitney Houston doc recently and while it does occasionally highlight the fact that she was effectively producing sugary, meaningless pop, there is no real critical appraisal of this - instead just her fans lavishing praise on her brilliance and plenty of talk of the records she broke. I can imagine something similar with Robin Williams. I mean do they in any way delve into the fact that this man is responsible for some of the worst movies of all time?


Why would he be responsible for them? He didn't write the parts. Plenty (all?) of great actors have made shit films. Does that make them 'responsible?' Filmmaking is a collaborative process and no one has a perfect record of successes.


He chose the roles, and has responsibility for that. It's a similar story with De Niro, who in his later years has made a pile of utterly terrible movies, ruining the memory of his early career. Whereas someone like Jeff Bridges has chosen roles very well and has very few cinematic clunkers on his CV.


All that means is that choosing good projects for yourself is important to you, personally. Bridges is great because he never disappoints, but he has also never reached the manic heights of a Brando or a DeNiro either. Or even a Williams for that matter.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 28 Nov 2018, 21:16

Matt Wilson wrote:All that means is that choosing good projects for yourself is important to you, personally.

Huh? How could it be otherwise?
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby SWIMMING POOL HARRINGTON » 28 Nov 2018, 21:20

could be that they just need the $$$
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Matt Wilson » 28 Nov 2018, 21:48

No one knows the outcome of a film project when they agree to do it. I've heard many actors say that they went into the role with the best intentions but circumstances outside their control conspired to make the end result disappointing. Endless rewrites to the script, the studio taking away the picture and tacking on audience-pleasing endings, the director not choosing the best takes of a scene, weird editing, etc. Since so many people are involved with the final product, I don't blame one actor for a film not working, when there's usually a multitude of reasons involved.

Not to mention virtually every great artist has been responsible for sub par work. To say "Oh, that guy's no good because he made shit films along with the great ones" shows a lack of appreciation for the film medium itself, or, at best a naivete regarding the process of movie-making.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Matt Wilson » 28 Nov 2018, 21:51

And then there's the notion of an artist taking on a commercial project simply because he wants to pay the bills. There's that story of a reporter asking Michael Caine about one of his more dubious choices (was it a Jaws sequel?), the guy asked Caine if he'd even seen the picture. "No," said Caine, "but I've seen the house that film paid for and it looks quite nice, thank you."
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby algroth » 28 Nov 2018, 22:10

Image

Just watched Widows myself. I was worried from the previews that it'd play out as a Snowman/Counsellor-type affair where a lot of talent was poured into what ultimately plays and looks like your average heist thriller, but I'm glad to inform, it's a Steve McQueen film through and through, it shares basically the same feel for pace, framing and almost lyrically fluid montage that the rest of his work has, and is paired with that effortless sensibility to it all that makes his stuff feel so unique and genuine in a moment where most contemporary 'auteurs' seem so driven by their search for style and cinematic virtuosity that their works feel plastic and overwrought in comparison. I like that it's at once something of a crowd-pleaser heist film, but at the same time has a way of capturing the American setting in a way that is very unfiltered, replete with all the warts, idiosyncracies and grotesqueness that makes it feel very genuine and rooted. This is proper political filmmaking through and through, even if at times the film may suffer due to wearing some of its commentary as overtext, and the odd farfetched story beat which, to be frank, is just about what you'd expect from a script that comes from the author behind Gone Girl. But these few missteps hardly affected my enjoyment of the whole, and the end result is thoroughly engaging, imbued with a propelling energy, and simply unmissable. Worth a watch on the big screen.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby algroth » 28 Nov 2018, 22:14

Also I feel bad for Garret Dillahunt, he's a great actor and's got arguably a bigger role than a few of the people billed in the poster, but still he gets completely ignored. Shame.

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 28 Nov 2018, 22:52

Matt Wilson wrote:No one knows the outcome of a film project when they agree to do it. I've heard many actors say that they went into the role with the best intentions but circumstances outside their control conspired to make the end result disappointing. Endless rewrites to the script, the studio taking away the picture and tacking on audience-pleasing endings, the director not choosing the best takes of a scene, weird editing, etc. Since so many people are involved with the final product, I don't blame one actor for a film not working, when there's usually a multitude of reasons involved.

Not to mention virtually every great artist has been responsible for sub par work. To say "Oh, that guy's no good because he made shit films along with the great ones" shows a lack of appreciation for the film medium itself, or, at best a naivete regarding the process of movie-making.

Oh come off it, you just want an excuse to like Patch Adams.

;)
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Goat Boy » 28 Nov 2018, 23:05

Williams choices were sometimes evidence of a cloying sentimentality that inevitably led to some terrible movies. Whether this was related to his sadness, melancholy, depression, I don’t know but I’m struggling to think of a Great Williams movie. Some films are clearly turkeys from the off and Williams didn’t seem to have much discernment.

I recognise his talent and his comedic brain but I didn’t find him particularly funny either and his movie career was largely a disappointment.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby SWIMMING POOL HARRINGTON » 28 Nov 2018, 23:10

Dead Poets Society
Good Will Hunting
The Fisher King
Good Morning Vietnam
Awakenings
Insomnia


and I believe he's also really good in

Mrs Doubtfire
Moscow on the Hudson
One Hour Photo
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Goat Boy » 28 Nov 2018, 23:22

Fisher King seems to be the one most people really rate. I haven’t seen it nor a couple of others but the rest are no great shakes even if he is sometimes very good.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby algroth » 28 Nov 2018, 23:39

My favorite film starring Williams in any role would be The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, but he does play a smallish role in it. The Fisher King is great and I recall really liking both One Hour Photo and Insomnia as well - though it's been ages since I've seen them.

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby $P.Muff$ » 29 Nov 2018, 01:27

He isn't bad in Dead Poets Society. As far as inspirational teacher type films go, it's probably one of the better ones. I just wish it wasn't about rich-ass white kids.

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Geezee » 29 Nov 2018, 09:47

Matt Wilson wrote:
Geezee wrote:I wonder about that - what's the evidence for him being a once-in-a-generation comic genius? He certainly had his moments. But I wonder how docs like that handle the undeniably saccharine, awful side of his work. We saw the Whitney Houston doc recently and while it does occasionally highlight the fact that she was effectively producing sugary, meaningless pop, there is no real critical appraisal of this - instead just her fans lavishing praise on her brilliance and plenty of talk of the records she broke. I can imagine something similar with Robin Williams. I mean do they in any way delve into the fact that this man is responsible for some of the worst movies of all time?


Why would he be responsible for them? He didn't write the parts. Plenty (all?) of great actors have made shit films. Does that make them 'responsible?' Filmmaking is a collaborative process and no one has a perfect record of successes.


He is responsible because he really consistently went for the same role. It's what he went for, and what he was typecast as - a sentimental, well-meaning, empty blaaghhh. The vast bulk of his movies really are the worst of what Hollywood can produce, and the fact that he consistently sought those movies is ultimately up to him. Yes he sought to diversify towards the end but the movies seemed pretty generic to me and were only remarkable in that they could promote it by saying "Look at this! Robin Williams is playing a dark role!". None of his movies would likely features in my top 500 movies of all time - and many would feature at the very bottom. Even his roles in movies like Good Morning Vietnam and Dead Poets are problematic to me.

But absolutely, I recognise the uniqueness of some of his qualities - the almost exhausting quality of his energy. And in some ways I admire that, including when I see it in others. But I did find his comedy was typically very bland (someone put up here - likely when RW passed away - several examples of his comedy, including some sketch on golfing in Scotland or something like that, as evidence of his supreme talent and I found it completely generic observational comedy).

I almost certainly will watch the documentary though.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby SWIMMING POOL HARRINGTON » 29 Nov 2018, 10:45

Do that.

'generic observational comedy' is absolutely NOT what he was about, whatever other faults you might find in him
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby caramba » 29 Nov 2018, 10:46

Matt Wilson wrote:And then there's the notion of an artist taking on a commercial project simply because he wants to pay the bills. There's that story of a reporter asking Michael Caine about one of his more dubious choices (was it a Jaws sequel?), the guy asked Caine if he'd even seen the picture. "No," said Caine, "but I've seen the house that film paid for and it looks quite nice, thank you."


To also quote St Michael: "To maintain a very high standard of living, it is sometimes necessary to do a very low standard of film".

Does any one here remember the Spitting Image episode where he kept on popping up in people's wedding videos (sadly can't find on YT)?

\