Return of the RECENT VIEWING

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

Postby Darkness_Fish » 17 Jan 2018, 15:41

I was only taking the piss :lol:

Your post was better without the spoiler tags, and I'm literally the only cunt who might watch it. One star horrors are my staple diet.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby pcqgod » 17 Jan 2018, 20:44

Image

Dunkirk (2017)

Refreshing to see a taut, tense war movie with no extended exposition, no excess of character moments, no protracted scenes of politicians and generals sitting around a table discussing strategy, nor love stories for that matter.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Darkness_Fish » 18 Jan 2018, 09:28

Image

Essentially pointless violent ballet, which is lovely to look at. Not bad at all.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Goat Boy » 18 Jan 2018, 16:07

Image

The Lady From Shanghai

I have to say I was a bit bored watching the first part of this on the boat but when they get back onshore Welles cranked it right up and it really took off, becoming increasingly weirder and more intense until the delirious climax. Welles Irish accent jarred at first and I wasn’t entirely sure about his performance (I didn’t quite buy into his relationship with Hayworth (yes I know they were married). Some of the humour didn’t quite work for me either although I liked the barely concealed contempt at the rich wankers Welles is sailing with but there are moments of real brilliance and genius here. I loved the shift in tone after they get back onshore where it starts to get real twisty and turny. The court sequence was great with all the little individual moments from the crowd and the climax where Welles ends up at some amusement park is incredible.

I didn’t realise just how much was cut from this movie by the studio (Welles hated the score apparently which I can understand) so what you’re seeing of course isn’t Welles original vision which is a tragedy but par of the course for poor Orson. Imagine producing this stuff and having studio arseholes rip it to shreds. I’m amazed he didn’t kill one of ‘em.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 18 Jan 2018, 20:05

Image

Natalie P. doesn't really look anything like Jackie Kennedy, but the arresting thing about the performance is her elocution. She must have trained for months and she did a remarkable job (and perhaps she actually slightly overdid it). It's not (just) an accent, but a very distinctive pattern of speech you would only hear in rarefied enclaves of Long Island and Massachusetts, and which may in fact no longer exist.

The movie's pretty good, I thought, except for the ending, but don't ask me how it ended because I already forgot.

I do wonder about the historical accuracy of her having spent so much time alone in the immediate aftermath of the assassination. Didn't she have a big family?

Anyway, um yeah.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Matt Wilson » 19 Jan 2018, 00:53

Goat Boy wrote:Image

The Lady From Shanghai

I have to say I was a bit bored watching the first part of this on the boat but when they get back onshore Welles cranked it right up and it really took off, becoming increasingly weirder and more intense until the delirious climax. Welles Irish accent jarred at first and I wasn’t entirely sure about his performance (I didn’t quite buy into his relationship with Hayworth (yes I know they were married). Some of the humour didn’t quite work for me either although I liked the barely concealed contempt at the rich wankers Welles is sailing with but there are moments of real brilliance and genius here. I loved the shift in tone after they get back onshore where it starts to get real twisty and turny. The court sequence was great with all the little individual moments from the crowd and the climax where Welles ends up at some amusement park is incredible.

I didn’t realise just how much was cut from this movie by the studio (Welles hated the score apparently which I can understand) so what you’re seeing of course isn’t Welles original vision which is a tragedy but par of the course for poor Orson. Imagine producing this stuff and having studio arseholes rip it to shreds. I’m amazed he didn’t kill one of ‘em.


I love that movie. In terms of what was cut out, consider The Magnificent Ambersons, Dougie - originally about 2 1/2 hours, and cut down to less than 90 minutes. And even in its truncated form it's still a classic. I think this is too. Studio honchos were always fucking with Orson, to the extent that he left Hollywood in the late '40s for Europe only to return ten years later for Touch of Evil - and even then only upon Charlton Heston's recommendation.

Image
Absence of Malice

Pretty good treatise on moral ethics in journalism. Should reporters print stories which might hurt people if you can't prove they're not true? There's much more to it than that but I'm not going to go into it. Good performances and this is one of Newman's nominated roles.

Image
The Odd Couple

The second collaboration (and biggest hit) between Lemmon and Matthau is still enjoyable although it's probably a better play. Possibly Neil Simon's greatest achievement.

Image
Young Mr. Lincoln

Criterion's upgrade of their old DVD is one of Ford's better pictures, actually. With Fonda doing admirably despite his false nose, which is a distraction in some scenes. It's important to realize that Ford made this, Stagecoach, Drums Along the Mohawk, Grapes of Wrath, The Long Voyage Home, and How Green was My Valley all in three years. I'm not sure there was ever a greater burst of creativity which yielded such high results from any other filmmaker.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Darkness_Fish » 21 Jan 2018, 20:00

Image

A fairly strange take on the vulnerable women in an isolated house under attack shtick. Fairly understated, but not quite clever enough to be convincing, especially as it reveals more of the supposed sinister backstory.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Goat Boy » 22 Jan 2018, 15:09

Image

Inland Empire

This was the second time I’d watched it after only seeing it at the cinema when it came out. It’s safe to say that if you’re not a fan of the direction Lynch took from Lost Highway onwards (Straight Story excepted) then you should give this a wide berth because this is the furthest out Lynch has ever gone. For some this was clearly too far and I get that. I was frustrated when I first watched it in a way I wasn’t with Mulholland Drive where despite all the dream narrative and Lynchian bollocks there still felt like a clear narrative twinkling underneath the surface that wasn’t impossible to get at. Inland Empire feels even more opaque even if its themes are recognisable and recurring (dark side of Hollywood, brutalisation of women, the creative process, the relationship between artist and audience). This perhaps isn’t surprising given the fact that there was no complete screenplay and instead Lynch wrote dialogue on the day of shooting so it was an experiment on Lynches part. It lacks the unified vision of Mulholland Drive where you felt like Lynch was in control of what was going in. Here there’s a sense of enveloping madness and loss of control which may not be intentional but maybe more a happy accident given Laura Derns journey. The films second half in particular is heavy work where multiple stories and timelines converge, characters play multiple roles and fantasy and reality blend in one giant unforgiving maelstrom. So let’s start with the first half which is pretty straightforward:

Laura Dern is an actress who lands a great part in some Hollywood melodrama which is at least partially about marriage infidelity and its consequences. It turns out however that the movie is a remake of an earlier Polish project that was meant to be cursed and which lead to the two main actors being murdered. We also see a young woman (also a prostitute) called “the little girl” watching telly in what looks like a hotel room. On the telly is some kind of weird sitcom starring human sized rabbits who speak in bizarre non sequiturs and who clearly have some kind of significance but who knows what. Prior to finding out she’s got the role a new neighbour visits Dern to tell her she will get the role and that there is going to be a murder. She also tells Dern of two stories: one featuring a little boy who caused “evil to be born” and one featuring a little girl who went through a door and discovered a “palace”.

The movie goes ahead and pretty soon reality and fantasy start to blur as Dern gets lost in the role and an affair between her and her co-star develops (despite Derns husband warning the co-star of consequences should this happen). At this point the movie disappears down the rabbit hole as Dern stumbles upon a door marked “naxxon” (a reference to the opening scene where a gramophone plays the “the longest-running radio play in history) and suddenly multiple story lines appear involving eastern European prostitutes and Dern playing seemingly multiple roles. Dern has to be “little girl” who goes through the door but who’s the little boy? What is the evil that was born? Who is this mysterious figure called The Phantom who appears to the prostitutes pimp? Who the hell are all these prostitutes anyway and what is Inland Empire? What is the “longest running radio play in history?”

I’m not going to pretend I know exactly what the hell is going on here. Maybe, like Mulholland Drive, you can join up the dots and come up with some kind of linear narrative but more so than ever with Lynch I think that’s a pretty futile exercise although one that predictably many have attempted. Unlike Mulholland Drive I’m not interested in what it exactly is happening here, and I’m not convinced Lynch intended the movie to be viewed this way anyway. What you have here is a series of stories and scenes with overlapping themes and characters that Lynch has returned to again and again throughout his career and which on Inland Empire he combines into one phantasmagorical whole.

Going on what Lynch said around the time of the movie it appears he was very disenfranchised with the cinema and I’ve read one quote where he actually says “film is dead”. I think on one level Inland Empire is ultimately a tribute to the power of the cinema and its ability to influence peoples lives. We see the prostitute in the room watching the telly including seeing Laura Dern perform and there appears to be some kind of symbiotic relationship between the two to the point where possibly Dern is acting out her life (through a previous role? The prostitutes fantasy world?) and in the end Dern actually appears to magically liberate her from The Phantom so she can be reunited with her husband and child in the moving closing scenes. On another level the movie appears to be about the brutalisation of women by men (a long running Lynch theme that we find on Blue Velvet and, of course, Twin Peaks). Is the “longest running radio play in history” men’s ill treatment of women? Is this the evil the boy inadvertently created? Is the Phantom a supernatural manifestation of this abuse?

On another level it appears to be about infidelity and the madness of love, or maybe more accurately lust (“strange what love does”). Interestingly Lynch split up with his long term partner Mary Sweeney after a month of marriage in 2006. Was there infidelity there? Is this a reflection of Lynches personal life? Actions have consequences is a line said on more than one occasion during the film.

On yet another level it appears to be about the creative process an artist embarks upon and I think you can see Laura Derns journey down the rabbit hole as a representation of this journey in all its neurosis, confusion, frustration and, hopefully, ultimately triumph. In this way Lynch touches on movies like Persona (the movie within a movie) which goes back to my point about Inland Empire being a tribute to the power and imagination of the cinema. Is this the Inland Empire of the title? The part of the subconscious where creativity and imagination reside? Is the movie about the creative process of making a movie itself and its ultimate goal of connecting with its audience?

If you’re looking for answers then you won’t find them in Inland Empire but I do think there are clear themes and ideas here and some stellar moments of Lynch weirdness and Laura Derns performance is absolutely great. In some ways it feels like culmination of Lynches career but I’m not sure I would declare it a masterpiece. I think I’ll wait a couple of years and watch it again to see if it merits that honour. I think at the very least it deserves to be watched again.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby The Modernist » 22 Jan 2018, 18:25

Darkness_Fish wrote:I was only taking the piss :lol:

Your post was better without the spoiler tags, and I'm literally the only cunt who might watch it. One star horrors are my staple diet.


Oh I'll watch any UK horror from the 50s-70s although I don't always post them up on here.

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby jimboo » 22 Jan 2018, 20:06

Goat Boy wrote:Image

Inland Empire

This was the second time I’d watched it after only seeing it at the cinema when it came out. It’s safe to say that if you’re not a fan of the direction Lynch took from Lost Highway onwards (Straight Story excepted) then you should give this a wide berth because this is the furthest out Lynch has ever gone. For some this was clearly too far and I get that. I was frustrated when I first watched it in a way I wasn’t with Mulholland Drive where despite all the dream narrative and Lynchian bollocks there still felt like a clear narrative twinkling underneath the surface that wasn’t impossible to get at. Inland Empire feels even more opaque even if its themes are recognisable and recurring (dark side of Hollywood, brutalisation of women, the creative process, the relationship between artist and audience). This perhaps isn’t surprising given the fact that there was no complete screenplay and instead Lynch wrote dialogue on the day of shooting so it was an experiment on Lynches part. It lacks the unified vision of Mulholland Drive where you felt like Lynch was in control of what was going in. Here there’s a sense of enveloping madness and loss of control which may not be intentional but maybe more a happy accident given Laura Derns journey. The films second half in particular is heavy work where multiple stories and timelines converge, characters play multiple roles and fantasy and reality blend in one giant unforgiving maelstrom. So let’s start with the first half which is pretty straightforward:

Laura Dern is an actress who lands a great part in some Hollywood melodrama which is at least partially about marriage infidelity and its consequences. It turns out however that the movie is a remake of an earlier Polish project that was meant to be cursed and which lead to the two main actors being murdered. We also see a young woman (also a prostitute) called “the little girl” watching telly in what looks like a hotel room. On the telly is some kind of weird sitcom starring human sized rabbits who speak in bizarre non sequiturs and who clearly have some kind of significance but who knows what. Prior to finding out she’s got the role a new neighbour visits Dern to tell her she will get the role and that there is going to be a murder. She also tells Dern of two stories: one featuring a little boy who caused “evil to be born” and one featuring a little girl who went through a door and discovered a “palace”.

The movie goes ahead and pretty soon reality and fantasy start to blur as Dern gets lost in the role and an affair between her and her co-star develops (despite Derns husband warning the co-star of consequences should this happen). At this point the movie disappears down the rabbit hole as Dern stumbles upon a door marked “naxxon” (a reference to the opening scene where a gramophone plays the “the longest-running radio play in history) and suddenly multiple story lines appear involving eastern European prostitutes and Dern playing seemingly multiple roles. Dern has to be “little girl” who goes through the door but who’s the little boy? What is the evil that was born? Who is this mysterious figure called The Phantom who appears to the prostitutes pimp? Who the hell are all these prostitutes anyway and what is Inland Empire? What is the “longest running radio play in history?”

I’m not going to pretend I know exactly what the hell is going on here. Maybe, like Mulholland Drive, you can join up the dots and come up with some kind of linear narrative but more so than ever with Lynch I think that’s a pretty futile exercise although one that predictably many have attempted. Unlike Mulholland Drive I’m not interested in what it exactly is happening here, and I’m not convinced Lynch intended the movie to be viewed this way anyway. What you have here is a series of stories and scenes with overlapping themes and characters that Lynch has returned to again and again throughout his career and which on Inland Empire he combines into one phantasmagorical whole.

Going on what Lynch said around the time of the movie it appears he was very disenfranchised with the cinema and I’ve read one quote where he actually says “film is dead”. I think on one level Inland Empire is ultimately a tribute to the power of the cinema and its ability to influence peoples lives. We see the prostitute in the room watching the telly including seeing Laura Dern perform and there appears to be some kind of symbiotic relationship between the two to the point where possibly Dern is acting out her life (through a previous role? The prostitutes fantasy world?) and in the end Dern actually appears to magically liberate her from The Phantom so she can be reunited with her husband and child in the moving closing scenes. On another level the movie appears to be about the brutalisation of women by men (a long running Lynch theme that we find on Blue Velvet and, of course, Twin Peaks). Is the “longest running radio play in history” men’s ill treatment of women? Is this the evil the boy inadvertently created? Is the Phantom a supernatural manifestation of this abuse?

On another level it appears to be about infidelity and the madness of love, or maybe more accurately lust (“strange what love does”). Interestingly Lynch split up with his long term partner Mary Sweeney after a month of marriage in 2006. Was there infidelity there? Is this a reflection of Lynches personal life? Actions have consequences is a line said on more than one occasion during the film.

On yet another level it appears to be about the creative process an artist embarks upon and I think you can see Laura Derns journey down the rabbit hole as a representation of this journey in all its neurosis, confusion, frustration and, hopefully, ultimately triumph. In this way Lynch touches on movies like Persona (the movie within a movie) which goes back to my point about Inland Empire being a tribute to the power and imagination of the cinema. Is this the Inland Empire of the title? The part of the subconscious where creativity and imagination reside? Is the movie about the creative process of making a movie itself and its ultimate goal of connecting with its audience?

If you’re looking for answers then you won’t find them in Inland Empire but I do think there are clear themes and ideas here and some stellar moments of Lynch weirdness and Laura Derns performance is absolutely great. In some ways it feels like culmination of Lynches career but I’m not sure I would declare it a masterpiece. I think I’ll wait a couple of years and watch it again to see if it merits that honour. I think at the very least it deserves to be watched again.


Mmmmmmm, it's , well, you know.

Jeez , something is happening here. Good write up Dougie. I doubt many will stick with it to be honest. I doubt Lynch even knows where he is going with this one. I don't know what is truly going on but you made some pretty good points above. It ain't easy being a Lynch fan.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 22 Jan 2018, 20:20

^^^ Yeah, I saw that in the cinema when it came out and found it utterly baffling.

Nobody else seemed to be able to make any sense of it either (although it does have some wildly enthusiastic fans), but I do look forward to taking another crack at it & will surely have a closer look at your write-up after having done so.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Goat Boy » 24 Jan 2018, 11:37

Image

Wake In Fright

Doc Tydon: All the little devils are proud of hell
John Grant: You mean you don’t think The Yabba is the greatest little place on earth?
Doc Tydon: Could be worse
John Grant: How?
Doc Tydon: Supply of beer could run out


That’s the thing about fictional outback town The Yabba. It is hell, the locals are proud of it and like hell, you can never leave. John Grant is a primary teacher working in the middle of nowhere, which in Australia really does mean the middle of nowhere, as part of some government programme whereby teachers have to work a fixed amount of time at the behest of the government. Grant is resentful, bored of his job and dreams of escaping to Sydney and beyond but his only hope of escape is to buy himself out of his contract which would cost $1000 so he’s stuck here. Setting off for a holiday to visit his girlfriend in Sydney he travels to The Yabba, a small mining in order to get a flight. The locals are hospitable in that typically Australian way (take a drink!) but there’s an immediate undercurrent of tension not helped by Grants obvious dislike of the place rooted in his own intellectual snobbery and class unease.

There’s nothing to do in the Yabba except drink (and drink) and gamble and sensing an opportunity to escape his job he ends up losing all his money in some simple gambling game and so he’s stuck here for the foreseeable future until he can figure a way to get the money together for a flight. Things start to get worse rapidly as he stumbles upon a group of friends who take him under their wing. One of the friends is the enigmatic Doc Tydon (played with typical brilliance by Donald Pleasence) a disgraced alcoholic doctor who has embraced his base instincts and self-destructive nature of the Yabba and sees it as an opportunity to express his true nature. Grant obviously doesn’t fit in with these men and there’s a threat of violence but he decides to embrace the Yabba and full off drink they go hunting kangaroos. At this point the movie becomes increasingly delirious and strange and this scene in particular, which uses footage of an actual kangaroo hunt, is unlike anything else I’ve ever seen a movie. There’s a level of cruelty, debasement and horror here which is really taps into something deeply uncomfortable as Grants shadow self and primal nature emerges under pressure from his new friends culminating in a bizarre (almost) initiation ceremony where he ends up stabbing a wounded kangaroo to death. In the aftermath Grant resolves to finally leave Yabba but of course leaving hell isn’t quite that easy.

Like a lot of Aussie horror it deals with the tension between city and rural, something which it shares with contemporary films like Deliverance and Straw Dogs and it also shares with the latter the clash between “intellectual” and “working men”. But it goes deeper than this too, delving into Australian masculinity and its relationship with the natural world (the director was horrified when he witnessed the kangaroo hunt and used the footage to highlight its barbarism after consulting wildlife organisations). It’s hardly a flattering portrait of rural Australia but it’s not patronising either. There is community in Yabba, friendliness, generosity but at its heart is something dark and troubling and Grants confrontation with this leaves him irrevocably changed.

Amazingly this wasn't restored until 2009 but it's a great (Australian) film and well worth watching if you want something a bit challenging and disturbing.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby harvey k-tel » 24 Jan 2018, 14:23

Well, shit. Richard Davies has a song called "Chips Rafferty" and I'd always assumed it was just a fictional name.

I like the sound of that film, too. I'll have to seek it out.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Snarfyguy » 24 Jan 2018, 15:09

^^^ Seconded.

pcqgod wrote:Image

Blue Ruin (2013)

Dark and very violent revenge story. Excellent.

Saw this recently. Really liked its hillbilly/gothic sensibility, moral ambiguity and low-budget aesthetic.

Really good recommendations around here, as usual.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby pcqgod » 24 Jan 2018, 15:26

Image

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017)

Frances McDormand is probably best known for starring in productions by the Coen Brothers, so it seems fitting that 'Three Billboards,' like a good Coen Brothers movie, depicts hapless characters whose plans go awry and events spiraling out of control. McDormand is fabulous as the mom who has decided that she has taken all the shit that she will ever take from anyone, and Sam Rockwell's key supporting role as a small town police officer is wonderful. There were a few story contrivances that somewhat took me out of the story, but otherwise this is one of those rare movies that seems to take you on a ride through the full range of human emotion as it tells its story of people acting impulsively without thought of the consequences and eventually learning to treat each other as human beings.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Dr Markus » 24 Jan 2018, 19:10

Frances McDormand is one of he most underrated actors in Hollywood. Glad to hear it got a good review.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Goat Boy » 24 Jan 2018, 22:25

Griff wrote:The notion that Jeremy Corbyn, a lifelong vocal proponent of antisemitism, would stand in front of an antisemitic mural and commend it is utterly preposterous.


Copehead wrote:we have lost touch with anything normal

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Dr Markus » 24 Jan 2018, 22:39

Does she come to your mind straight away when thinking of brilliant actors? Chances are a lot of people have to be reminded about her.
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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Goat Boy » 24 Jan 2018, 22:48

Yes
Griff wrote:The notion that Jeremy Corbyn, a lifelong vocal proponent of antisemitism, would stand in front of an antisemitic mural and commend it is utterly preposterous.


Copehead wrote:we have lost touch with anything normal

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Re: Return of the RECENT VIEWING

Postby Dr Markus » 24 Jan 2018, 22:58

As usual, you're proving you're one in a million.
Drama Queenie wrote:You are a chauvinist of the quaintest kind. About as threatening as Jack Duckworth, you are a harmless relic of that cherished era when things were 'different'. Now get back to drawing a moustache on that page three model