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Old 03-17-2008, 06:17 AM   #406
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Night Watch aka Nochnoi Dozor (5/10)

This movie was released a few years ago now, and according to Wikipedia the international (dubbed) version which I saw had been chopped and changed quite a bit from the native Russian version, not to mention there are substantial differences from the book on which the story is based. The movie was very stingey with the story details, and the end result appeared to be a bit vague and scattered in places. Or maybe I was too daft to follow it because there are heaps of folks who genuinely loved this movie. Or, perhaps they'd all read the book(s) and knew exactly what was going on. The book is reputed to be great, but I think that the movie as a standalone experience doesn't do a good job of explaining the supernatural elements of the world nor the plot beyond a sort of patchy outline. I loved the concept and the dark style of the movie - some of the action sequences were awesome - and really wanted to get into it but instead was left feeling a bit bewildered. It left too much unexplained, and much of the time I was left wondering things like "How'd they know the Chosen One is out there now all of a sudden?", "What the hell is the Gloom and how does it work?", "What power does this Other have?", "What's the story with that weird vortex lady?", "Is that all it took for her to lift her own curse?", "Wait why are those two making out now, are they a couple?".

On the plus side I somehow still had a positive feeling about the movie, maybe 'cause I can see the potential of what's there to enjoy once I get a handle on it. I certainly enjoyed the different experience of watching a supernatural thriller without the usual Hollywood vibe - it's more exciting when there's that feeling that there are no 'rules'. One other thing that was pretty cool was that although there were opposing forces labelled as light and dark, their alignment to good or evil seemed open to interpretation. In short I'm still really intrigued by the movie and am keen to give it another chance.. after reading the book..
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Old 03-17-2008, 06:20 AM   #407
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dalton



Man, I hate to correct a noob, but the actual answer was:

Kate Beckinsale in leather 11/10
Oh so that's Kate Beckinsale...
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Old 03-17-2008, 07:32 AM   #408
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Originally posted by WinnieThePoo
well , you can always ask me about immigrant expexperience
better than a movie
I came here as a refugee, so I am well acquainted with the immigrant experience.

It is a wonderful movie nonetheless.
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Old 03-17-2008, 09:10 AM   #409
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sorry , i meant no harm
btw , couple months ago , i watched good doc about crystal meth with val kilmer doing the narrative , very positive film
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Old 03-17-2008, 01:28 PM   #410
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What's the name of that doc about crystal meth?
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Old 03-17-2008, 08:29 PM   #411
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American Meth

link
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Old 03-17-2008, 09:08 PM   #412
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Thanks
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Old 03-17-2008, 09:15 PM   #413
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Originally posted by corianderstem
What's the name of that doc about crystal meth?

My god, Cori. Get a hold of yourself.

You'll NEVER be Fergie.




I think this is how we lost NSW.
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Old 03-17-2008, 09:31 PM   #414
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He turned into Fergie-Ferg? I'm pretty sure that's not it.

She bugs the ever-lovin' snot out of me, but I will freely admit to digging a couple of her songs.
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Old 03-17-2008, 09:40 PM   #415
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I loved seeing her get attacked by zombies in Planet Terror.

That was satisfying.
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Old 03-17-2008, 10:14 PM   #416
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Originally posted by corianderstem
He turned into Fergie-Ferg? I'm pretty sure that's not it.

She bugs the ever-lovin' snot out of me, but I will freely admit to digging a couple of her songs.

Just wait and see what happens to those lumps, those lumps, those lovely, lovely lumps if you get on the meth train.

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Old 03-18-2008, 05:53 PM   #417
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Quote:
Originally posted by lazarus
The Double Life of Veronique (Kieslowski, 1991)

From the director of the Three Colors trilogy. I had seen this a looooong time ago, and finally got around to watching my new Criterion DVD. This is very much in line with the subsequent trilogy, in that Kieslowski maintains almost a god-like presence over his characters, pulling the strings of fate in what would normally seem like plot contrivances.

Irene Jacob (the beautiful, young Ingrid Bergman-resembling) who was the lead in Red, plays two roles here: The Polish girl Weronika, a young student and singer, and then for the remaining hour of the film, her doppelganger Veronique, a French music teacher (she won the Best Actress award at Cannes for this film). There is a moment in the first section where the two cross paths, and both of their lives change drastically after that scene, as the exposed connection seems to send shock waves through each of them.

This film is so unique that it's very difficult to describe because the plot is very simple. It's really about a young woman awakening to the world around her, even if that sounds like an ad for a feminine hygene product. There's a sense of mystery that pervades the final stretch of the film, and if the payoff seems simple, it's still very profound.
I only just watched this myself a few weeks back. I thought Irene Jacob was brilliant in the dual role and Kieslowski afforded her an unforgettable entrance with that shot of her singing in the rain. The look of pure joy on her face... wow. Can you believe he had Andie MacDowell in mind originally?!?

I found it a challenging film to watch though, not as immediately accessible as his Three Colours Trilogy. I'll have to return to it in the future as it seems to be one that demands multiple viewings to absord fully, once knowledge of the basic plot is out the way.

By the way, have you seen any of his Dekalog? I'm fascinated by the idea surrounding it but keep pushing it back.
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Old 03-18-2008, 06:44 PM   #418
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Oh yeah. The Dekalog is a landmark in cinema (even though it was initially broadcast on Polish TV). I own the script in book form and the DVD boxed set. Really amazing stuff. The film for the 5th Commandment, Thou Shall Not Kill, is one of the most powerful things you will ever see.
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Old 03-19-2008, 04:49 PM   #419
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The Fountain
I was really apprehensive about watching this again after not seeing it since at the cinema. Would it transfer well to the small screen and would it captivate me as much as the first time?

As good as can be expected and possibly even more so.

This is one of the most beautiful modern films I’ve seen and even if the fantastic visuals of the future sequences deserve to be seen on the big screen they still impress at home. Arronfsky infuses each time period with it’s own themes and tones and the only bum notes he strikes are most likely down to budget constraints (the opening Mayan scenes just seem too backlot constructed to completely convince). But his overall use of colour and sound, including not having any music score play during the contemporary scenes to great effect, work wonders and one never wishes to get back to another time period. They all fit together perfectly and never outstay their welcome. Jackman has never been better in a demanding role and the chemistry he shares with the also great Weisz is both tender and ultimately heart breaking. Much was said at the time of release about how the three different threads slot together and whether the past and future ones were real and / or literal. Over two viewings I’ve made up my mind but there’s so much more depth here than in this surface puzzle. If I were to redo my 2007 list it would definitely feature higher and it was already at #4.

Notes on a Scandal
Missed this last year and caught it on Sky at the weekend. A shame really as this was a gripping little drama with a quality turn from Judi Dench as an obsessive spinster. Cate Blanchett (does she ever stop working?) holds her own impressively but for all the explanations given I never quite got why she risked everything important in her life for a 15-year old nob who happened to be good at art. I know girls like a bit of rough, but come on. So as good as she is Cate is really just here to initiate the plot and act foolishly. Luckily Judi really is great and avoids overplaying her role into a boo-hiss villain. We get inside her head thanks to her titular notes and what’s gratifying is that we get her views on a variety of subjects as we view them impartially, rather than just solely given her perspective. Worth watching for her alone.

It Happened One Night
As far as romantic comedies go this is as good as they get, especially given the talent involved and the fact it practically minted the template modern rom-coms still use today. Clark Gable is a hoot as the down to earth, carrot munching, fast talking (and occasionally sozzled) journalist in need of that one big story to stop his boss from finally shit canning him. Gable’s performance is so entertaining and well realised it too has been emulated many times over the years (Chevy Chase’s Fletch is a good example). Claudette Colbert plays the stuck up, spoilt brat fleeing her wealthy father in Miami to meet up with her ill-suited suitor. Of course they meet and with one thing leading to another Gable accompanies her on her way. And then they slowly fall in looove…

So yes the plot might be as overly familiar these days but it’s the individual elements that make it so much fun. Frank Capra’s direction is a joy to watch, skipping briskly through their various escapades and always ending each scene on the right note, while the script is hilarious. No wonder the film won the top five Oscars. It’s also remarkably (and I suppose appropriately) chaste and it only adds to the charm. I’ve got too many favourite scenes to even begin referring to but doing so would spoil the fun. Give it a go even if you don’t normally bother with the classics or rom-coms.
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Old 03-22-2008, 01:46 AM   #420
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The Ice Storm just beat the living shit out of me. There's a ton in this film to digest, and I don't think I'm going to be able to find the rhyme and reason of all of it any time soon, certainly not until a second or third viewing. It's been a while since I've been left so uneasy by a film though, sort of like my feet have been slipped out from under me, you know? I do know that Ang Lee is a true master of the craft though, detractors be damned. Still need to see a few more of his films, but just about everything he's created in at least the last 10 year has been absolutely stellar, Hulk notwithstanding. Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Brokeback Mountain, Lust Caution, and now this. Not many people are capable of work of this caliber these days.
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