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Old 10-22-2007, 02:10 AM   #991
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Great, great reviews, monkeyskin. I think Ikiru is Kurosawa's masterpiece, and is just one of those films that make you reevaluate your own life. It's just one of the greatest films EVER.

Rififi is another classic, and I had the pleasure of seeing this in the theatre when a new print was released maybe 5 or so years ago. That heist scene is so brilliant and ballsy...can you imagine a director (or more to the point, a studio) today having the courage to let the images speak for themselves for that long? No fucking way.
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Old 10-22-2007, 02:16 AM   #992
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Quote:
Originally posted by deep
Gone Baby Gone

8/10

I liked the entire film, all aspects of it.

Especially the ending.


In times like these -
when we have a continued involvement in Iraq ,
the rational thing to do would be for the U S to draw down and pull out

and the counter argument is only

"We are doing the right thing
it does not matter what the costs are,
or the consequences."

- the person that is the "decider" smugly hides behind the premise of "absolutes".

Deep, I'm assuming that with your political statements you're attempting to draw a parallel to the moral issue addressed at the end of the film, and without going into spoiler territory, are you saying you agree or disagree with Casey Affleck's decision? Because the more I think about it, the more I think he was right. If I'm reading you correctly, you're saying that the U.S. Government's pride and/or honor is preventing them from doing the right thing, and that Affleck has fallen into the same trap. But whereas the U.S.'s reasoning behind that stubbornness is empty, there is something very just in Affleck's position. It's not that cut and dried.

It's a testament to the power of the film that these questions can be raised and thought about long after it's over, because it's something that requires so much more than a gut reaction. It's really a case of damned if you do, damned if you don't (which I certainly don't think is true of the occupation in Iraq).
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Old 10-22-2007, 04:32 AM   #993
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Memento, the second time, on TV.

Still not sure if "John G" in the end was the right guy or not. Still one of the most original movies and a good cast, especially the leading man - well done C. Nolan.

10/10
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Old 10-22-2007, 11:35 AM   #994
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Quote:
Originally posted by lazarus
That heist scene is so brilliant and ballsy...can you imagine a director (or more to the point, a studio) today having the courage to let the images speak for themselves for that long? No fucking way.
The thought of the Harold Becker/Al Pacino remake in production actually scares me. I enjoyed Sea of Love and City Hall to a certain extent, but come on this is Rififi. You don't fuck with perfection.
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Old 10-22-2007, 04:34 PM   #995
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or at least do it in French with Vincent Cassell and Jean Reno...
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Old 10-22-2007, 06:16 PM   #996
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Bloody remakes. I won't write it off yet because you just never know, especially with The Departed doing a fine job with the Infernal Affairs trilogy recently.

As for Ikiru, I'm more eager now to watch more Kurosawa films than I was before. I've seen a few of his samurai films but the only other contemporary one was High and Low which also made a few interesting comments about modern life and society. If anyone has seen more of his films, do they also have something relevant to say? It's not often a director can actually make me think about my life and society rather than focusing on thematic plotlines and characters with a moral at the end.

And glad you enjoyed them laz
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Old 10-23-2007, 02:44 AM   #997
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American Beauty *SPOILERS*

I have been looking for this film on the net for ages, and I found it a couple of hours ago. What I have seen in those two hours blew me away.

First off, this isn't a groundbreaking film. I wasn't shocked by anything I saw (maybe slightly caught off guard, if anything), I wasn't dazzled by anything this film had to offer, and the way I view films hasn't been changed. But I was impressed by every facet of this film.

The script was the best part. Somehow, it managed to bring humor to a truly tragic situation. The hilarious moments were spread around evenly among the characters, but the majority came from Kevin Spacey's Lester Burnham, one of my new favorite characters of cinema. The relatability, the sweetness, the love for life he had was palpable. He was the catalyst that set the movie alight, and personifies the brazen, balls-out attitude this film repeatedly took.

"And your mother seems to prefer that I go through life like a f***ing prisoner while she keeps my dick in a mason jar under the sink."

Yes, this film is not for everyone. The story has been done before (suburban-dweller goes through a mid-life crisis), but never has a film been this open about, well, everything. The guy masturbates twice, he has a crush on a teenage girl who he comes this close to having sex with, and that kind of sums the film up: it's all about the primal urges, the things that get shoved under by society. Lester was fitter, happier, and more productive, but just got tired of it.

There are a few unfortunate stereotypes in this film, but it manages to dodge that bullet by simply taking the characters as far as they can go, and not playing it safe. Nobody gets off the hook, and everyone is mocked repeatedly. The girl who hates her looks and wants breast augmentation actually happens to far nicer breasts than her (supposedly) promiscuous friend, who happens to have been a virgin all along. The homophobic marine happens to be gay. And so on.

Did I mention the directing? Yeah, it wasn't bad. Just one more highlight in a film that's already stacked with greatness.

So yeah, I'm pretty much in love with the film. Anyone that disagrees can shut up and go watch it again, because they clearly didn't get it the first time. 10/10
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:59 AM   #998
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I liked this film a lot the first time I saw it, as it spoke to the complacency of my own life at the time, where I was trapped in a job I didn't like (retail hell), living in an area I couldn't stand (Orange County, for the record).

It didn't hold up quite so well, as some of the satire was directed at easy targets, and the stuff with the marine was a bit OTT. Also, Fight Club came out right after this film, and spoke even more directly to my station in life (AB's subject is mid-life crisis rather than what I call the pre-life crisis in FC), and that held up even after 5 viewings in 2 months.

Also, Thora Birch may have bigger breasts than Mena Suvari, but I don't know if that necessarily makes them nicer. A matter of taste, I imagine. Annette Benning has better boobs than either of them, or at least she did when she was nude in The Grifters about 10 years earlier.
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:08 PM   #999
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"My Kid Could Paint That"

Superb film! Fascinating exploration into the nature and value of art.
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Old 10-26-2007, 02:24 AM   #1000
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Catch Me If You Can - 8/10
Solid little chase film from Spielberg. It's entertaining, light, and easy to digest. DiCaprio turns in another great performance, proving what a strong force he's going to be in the many years to come.

3-Iron - 9/10
Absolutely gorgeous film from Korean director Ki-Duk Kim, the director of Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring. Featuring virtually no dialogue from the two romantic leads, this film is an absolute wonder of narrative and visual beauty. The film takes a more existential turn in the final act, which will either completely turn one off the film if drive it to even greater hights as it did for me. One of the most heart-warming and heart-wretching love stories of this decade, this is a film I see myself revisiting again and again and again.

The Rules of the Game - 9.5/10
My first Renoir, it's a shame I saw Altman's remarkably similar Gosford Park before this, because I couldn't get that film out of my head during the duration of this viewing. However, it made for a great comparison and analytical tool while watching this. The Rules of the Game seems to have a much more universal theme than Gosford Park, though the narrative is firmly rooted in French aristocratic society of the era. Gosford Park was much more concerned with the strict study of class conflict, while the story almost felt like it could have happened anywhere in any time strangely enough. Either way, this was probably my favorite film we've screened for class this semester, no doubt because of it's wonderful balance of drama and humour, and my particular fondness for ensemble casts.

Cidade de Deus - 9/10
I'm not entiretly sure yet what to make of this film's narrative, though I just finished it less than 10 minutes ago, I guess I need to give it time. There was a very lose direction throughout most of the plot, but the script was so perfectly written, by the end of the film everything felt in order, and I could appreciate the ground work laid in the first act of the film. Beautiful writing. This is a heavily stylish gang epic where the style benefits the brilliant script, and doesn't feel like the director is simply polishing a turd, much like most of the Tarantino rip-offs of the past decade or so. This film has a vision, and it accomplished that vision beautifully. It's a story about war, friendship, love, betrayal, family, honor, and the trials of the sons to rid himself of the fathers' sins. It's a story that feels like it deserved 4 hours of film, but accomplished more than it had two in just a little over 2. That's the sign of brilliant filmmaking.
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Old 10-26-2007, 12:17 PM   #1001
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lancemc
Cidade de Deus - 9/10
I'm not entiretly sure yet what to make of this film's narrative, though I just finished it less than 10 minutes ago, I guess I need to give it time. There was a very lose direction throughout most of the plot, but the script was so perfectly written, by the end of the film everything felt in order, and I could appreciate the ground work laid in the first act of the film. Beautiful writing. This is a heavily stylish gang epic where the style benefits the brilliant script, and doesn't feel like the director is simply polishing a turd, much like most of the Tarantino rip-offs of the past decade or so. This film has a vision, and it accomplished that vision beautifully. It's a story about war, friendship, love, betrayal, family, honor, and the trials of the sons to rid himself of the fathers' sins. It's a story that feels like it deserved 4 hours of film, but accomplished more than it had two in just a little over 2. That's the sign of brilliant filmmaking.
Excellent film, one that blew me away the first time I saw it and now firmly one of my favourites. Visually it's a tour de force and while it doesn't use every trick in the book to tell the story it comes mighty close. The story of the apartment and the separate plot strands leading up to L'il Ze's arrival there stand out. What's also incredible is that the cast were local ameteurs. Again, not a new trick in itself but the performances are still top notch.

I've been very keen to watch the spin off TV series, City of Men, for a while now. With news that that's being adapted into a spin off film it just makes me even more eager.

(Have you seen Amores Perros? I saw them both around the same time and also think of them together. It's a similar structure to Pulp Fiction and the director of 21 Grams and Babel, well worth a look.)

Also, I wasn't especially fond of The Rules of the Game / La Regle du Jeu. Maybe I just wasn't in the right frame of mind for it at the time, I'll have to give it another go at some point.
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