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What did you watch this week?
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beltmann
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Joined: 26 Jun 2003
Posts: 2341
Location: West Bend, WI

PostPosted: 06.01.2004 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Danny Baldwin wrote:
When we aren't laughing at what's supposed to be serious, we're thinking about it, and therefore what's supposed to be silly seems like it's supposed to be serious. I don't know if that sentence makes sense, or if you understand what I'm saying, but I tried. Wink


It makes sense, and I don't disagree at all. I didn't like the movie very much, either; the only difference, I think, is that it was all so profoundly silly that I consider it utterly harmless. Might we argue that the film would be better had it fully embraced its goofiness? Probably, although it would still be a corny disaster flick. We could also just easily argue that the failed sincerity lends it part of its silly charm--isn't overblown fear mongering a staple of the genre? Plus, when it comes to art, I generally prefer siding with the big swing that missed than the bunt that worked. That might help explain why I prefer Day After Tomorrow--ludicrous histrionics and all--over something like Independence Day. (Besides, even though they are asked to deliver atrocious lines, the performances by Quaid and Gyllenhaal are at least mildly better than what usually appears in disaster flicks.)



I guess I'm just saying that a movie like Day After Tomorrow is so obviously insignificant that it's not worth getting worked up about its "narrative" faults or simplistic politics. Going in we know it will be disposable.



Eric
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Fred C. Dobbs
Director


Joined: 11 Mar 2004
Posts: 201
Location: New York

PostPosted: 06.01.2004 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

4/25 - 4/31:



5/25 - Stray Dog (Commentary) (1949) *****

5/27 - Bucktown (1975) ***

5/27 - A Day at the Races (1937) ****

5/30 - Smiles of a Summer Night (Film Forum) (1955) ***1/2

5/30 - Baadasssss! (2004) *****

5/31 - For Your Height Only (1979) - Haha!

5/31 - A Fistful of Dollars (1964) ***1/2

5/31 - Detour (1945) ****
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Danny Baldwin
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PostPosted: 06.01.2004 10:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

beltmann wrote:
Might we argue that the film would be better had it fully embraced its goofiness?


Without question, precisely.
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the night watchman
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PostPosted: 06.02.2004 12:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't mind that The Day After Tomorrow was silly; I minded that it was boring. Egad. How compelling did everyone think that an hour of worried expressions and doom-fraught dialogue after twenty minutes of spectacular disaster footage would be?
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Michael Scrutchin
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Joined: 26 Jun 2003
Posts: 832
Location: Pearland, TX

PostPosted: 06.03.2004 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The last 20 days or so (I need to start doing this weekly!):



  • Dial M for Murder (Hitchcock, 1954) B

  • The Penalty (Worsley, 1920) B+

  • Family Plot (Hitchcock, 1976) B

  • Marnie (Hitchcock, 1964) A-

  • Steamboat Bill, Jr. (Keaton, 1928) B+

  • The Lady from Shanghai (Welles, 1947) B+

  • Clash by Night (Lang, 1952) B+

  • The Asphalt Jungle (Huston, 1950) A-

  • The Trial (Welles, 1962) A-

  • The Kid (Chaplin, 1921) B+

  • The Shop Around the Corner (Lubitsch, 1940) A-

  • Smiles of a Summer Night (Bergman, 1955) A-

  • A Fistful of Dollars (Leone, 1964) B

  • The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (Ford, 1962) B+



I haven't been out to the movies in ages (I've only seen a few 2004 releases), but that'll change soon.
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the night watchman
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PostPosted: 06.03.2004 4:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michael B. Scrutchin wrote:


[*] Marnie (Hitchcock, 1964) A-





What did you make of Sean Connery's character; or, rather, what did you think of the movie's take on his character? He struck me, throughout the bulk of the film, as a sociopath -- more deranged, if better at hiding it, than Hedren's character. And yet, at the end, he moves into the "hero" role, as thought the movie has always approved of his actions. Struck me as very odd.
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Michael Scrutchin
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PostPosted: 06.03.2004 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the night watchman wrote:


What did you make of Sean Connery's character; or, rather, what did you think of the movie's take on his character? He struck me, throughout the bulk of the film, as a sociopath -- more deranged, if better at hiding it, than Hedren's character. And yet, at the end, he moves into the "hero" role, as thought the movie has always approved of his actions. Struck me as very odd.




Marnie is a sick, twisted movie, and I still don't know quite what to make of it.



[START POSSIBLE SPOILERS FOR MARNIE]



Connery's character is definitely a sicko, blackmailing Marnie into marrying him and then raping her on their honeymoon. According to the documentary on the DVD, the film's first screenwriter was fired because of the rape scene -- he didn't want to include it because he thought there was no way to redeem Connery's character after that. A female screenwriter was called in to replace him. Now, I couldn't believe what I heard this woman say in the DVD doc -- she didn't even consider it rape! In what world does a man forcing himself upon a woman who he blackmailed into marriage not constitute rape?



The first screenwriter was right -- Connery's character couldn't be redeemed after that. But the film is much stronger with it in there. The two central characters might be the most screwed-up people to ever take center-stage in a mainstream studio movie. Marnie is deliriously off-kilter, maybe even perverse, and I'm not sure how Hitchcock wants us to feel about Connery's character or the "happy" ending. I certainly never approved of Connery's character, though I sensed that there was a part of him that genuinely wanted to help her -- and he did, I suppose, even if the way he went about it was truly perverse.



[END POSSIBLE SPOILERS FOR MARNIE]



It's a sick, fascinating, mesmerizing mess of a movie.
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the night watchman
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PostPosted: 06.03.2004 8:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you hit the nail on the head with that analysis. I certainly think it's a compelling movie -- one of Hitch's most compelling -- precisely because of its perversity. I supposed I just wish it would have followed through all the way through the end (although I'm not sure what kind of ending could cap such a story off).
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Jim Harper
Director


Joined: 29 Feb 2004
Posts: 226
Location: Totnes, Devon, UK

PostPosted: 06.04.2004 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, this week I have seen:



Return of the King (Jackson, 2003)

The Black Scorpion (Ludwig, 1957)

Them! (Douglas, 1954)

Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (Lourie, 1954)

It Came from Beneath the Sea (Gordon, 1955)

The Giant Gila Monster (Kellog, 1959)

Haunted School 4 (Hirayama, 1999)

The Guard from the Underground (Kurosawa, 1992)



As you can tell, I've been on a 50s monster kick for a few days. They're all entertaining, although The Black Scorpion is probably the worst of them. Gila Monster is so terrible it's funny.



I'm not a great fan of LOTR, but the third one is definitely the best of them all. Mind you the third book was the best of the three too.



I tried to sit through Haunted School 4 but I couldn't make it. I tried. I really did.



The Guard from the Underground is very good. Different to his later works but worth watching.
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the night watchman
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PostPosted: 06.04.2004 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jim Harper wrote:




The Guard from the Underground is very good. Different to his later works but worth watching.




This is basically a slasher movie, isn't it? Have you seen any of Kurosawa's yakuza movies?
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Jim Harper
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PostPosted: 06.04.2004 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the night watchman wrote:
This is basically a slasher movie, isn't it? Have you seen any of Kurosawa's yakuza movies?




It is a slasher movie, but it's a very good and pretty unique one. You can spot all of his stylistic devices coming through as well. I've sent Michael a review, and I go into much more detail there.



I have seen any of his Yakuza films, I'm afraid. They're not easy to get outside of Japan. Hell, they're not easy to get in Japan. I mean, the IMDb lists three 'Suit yourself or shoot yourself' films. There's actually six, and he shot them all on video in about 18 months.
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the night watchman
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PostPosted: 06.04.2004 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jim Harper wrote:


It is a slasher movie, but it's a very good and pretty unique one. You can spot all of his stylistic devices coming through as well. I've sent Michael a review, and I go into much more detail there.




I look forward to reading it.
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Jim Harper
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PostPosted: 06.04.2004 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now that I've got the Italian horror book out the way, I should have a little more time to do reviews for the site. Hopefully I'll be able to do a few more reviews of Kurosawa's stuff (maybe even one of his soft-core porn thrillers). Fingers-crossed!
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the night watchman
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PostPosted: 06.05.2004 1:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mmmmm... Porn thrillers ....



Is the Italian horror book published yet?
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stefanieduckwitz
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Joined: 07 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: 06.05.2004 5:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just got home from Harry Potter Prisoner Of Azkaban. It was... meh.
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