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gromit
Posted: Thu Dec 31, 2020 2:25 am Reply with quote
Joined: 31 Aug 2004 Posts: 8869 Location: Shanghai
Ides wasn't well-like hereabouts:

Ghulam wrote:
gromit wrote:
Idea of March isn't a train wreck or anything. It's just the type of film you watch half of on cable ....


It just insults your intelligence. Otherwise it is okay.


billyweeds wrote:
You aren't the least bit harsh. The movie is okay, nothing more, and sometimes less. It's mediocrity personified, and the least impressive of Gosling's three outings of 2011. Drive is the gold, Crazy. Stupid. Love. the silver. Ides is a scuffed-up bronze.

However, I think you neglect the two best performances in the film. It's supposed to be about men, but the two females are for me the only really interesting characters. Evan Rachel Wood is savvy and sexy as the young woman in the case, and Marisa Tomei provides an original take on an old stereotype, the ball-busting newswoman. She's always fascinating to watch, even as here when she deliberately "uglies herself up."

Giamatti and Hoffman, competent though they are, can't transcend the dumbness of the situation they're acting out.

And Clooney's direction is, as you said, uninspired. Perhaps he was too invested in giving the wonderful performance he gives in The Descendants. (His on-screen work in Ides is nothing special.)



gromit wrote:
Ides of March was awfully sloppy in its plotlines. A film which was harmed by having stars behind it who could get their film made too easily. Would have been better if a writer came up with the idea, let it marinate, received criticism over the years, and honed the script until it made sense and worked. I did like Giamatti and PS Hoffman as the campaign managers. But that was about it.

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bartist
Posted: Thu Dec 31, 2020 10:05 am Reply with quote
Joined: 27 Apr 2010 Posts: 6702 Location: Black Hills
Quote:

You know, I read the summary on wiki and had a vague feeling maybe I did see it, but I couldn't recall a thing or have any visual recollection...
(quoted from Gromit, in CF)

It's funny how some films work that way. I've had that same lapse of memory with several films. A psychologist would have an interesting bit of research to discover the process by which mediocre films fall into the oubliette of the mind.

I realized I only fuzzily remembered TIOM, through a cheesecloth covered lens that blurred its flaws.
Anyway, it's possible Clooney is not quite the directing talent I thought. GNAGL might be his best work.

Your list from 2011 reminds me that was a good year in film for some offbeat films and foreign films.

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Syd
Posted: Thu Dec 31, 2020 10:44 am Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 21 May 2004 Posts: 12681 Location: Norman, Oklahoma
I remember re-watching "Being Julia" because I remembered liking it and discovered I hated it with a passion. Then I went back to my original review and discovered I hated it then, too. Memory is fickle. Then there's that Agnes Varda movie I mentioned a while back that I'd apparently seen and didn't remember at all.

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gromit
Posted: Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:44 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 31 Aug 2004 Posts: 8869 Location: Shanghai
That 2011 list might need rearranging.
I've rewatched and grown to like The Descendants more.
Same with Young Adult which I liked a good deal the first time.

Otherwise I'd peg it as a weak year with a lot of okay/mediocre films, and very few standouts. I recall being disappointed that the Top Ten never filled out with films I really liked, which is why starting at #4 it drops down to a somewhat tepid endorsement (Good - liked well enough).

The Estonian film The Temptation of St. Tony sits at #8, and that's primarily because I really liked the opening 20 minutes, with the rest of the film kind of a just-okay shrug.
As for the Mysteries of Lisbon, I quite liked Part I, but Part II seemed to rehash the same ground and tread water. (It's essentially 2 films at 4.5 hours).

So a meh year to gromit.

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bartist
Posted: Sat Jan 02, 2021 1:40 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 27 Apr 2010 Posts: 6702 Location: Black Hills
I'm not sure why I'm recommending "I am Woman," a 2019 biopic that's definitely Grade B, but for the remarkable performance of Tilda Cobham-Hervey who radiates the star power that the original Ms Reddy did, as well as doing her own (amazing) singing.

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gromit
Posted: Sun Jan 03, 2021 12:33 am Reply with quote
Joined: 31 Aug 2004 Posts: 8869 Location: Shanghai
I was putting together an early 70's compilation a few weeks ago, so I included some Helen Reddy. I like her version of You're My World. It sounds rather Dusty Springfield (or maybe Lulu) -- I would have thought it was a British tune -- though Reddy was Australian. Actually it's an Italian tune Il Mio Mondo, but the production sounds like pop British invasion-ish, maybe because the original English language version was by Cilla Black (aka Priscilla White) an early friend of the Beatles.

I always associate Delta Dawn with Tanya Tucker. But now I see the recording history was rather muddled, with a lot of folks recording it around the same time. Two fairly unknowns recorded the song (including the songwriter), and then Reddy, Tucker and Better Midler all recorded it around the same time. I don't think I ever heard Midler's version, so I'm d/l-ing it now.

Did the film get into Reddy helping Olivia Newton John get on track? Or Reddy's post-singing hypnotherapy career?

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bartist
Posted: Sun Jan 03, 2021 1:24 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 27 Apr 2010 Posts: 6702 Location: Black Hills
gromit wrote:


Did the film get into Reddy helping Olivia Newton John get on track? Or Reddy's post-singing hypnotherapy career?


No, it stops late 80s and then the return to school is mentioned in the credits. No mention of ONJ.

Yeah, I'm curious about the quantum shift from singer to hypnotherapist. I think it's admirable, her following her interests and not following a well-beaten track.

A review described Cobham-Hervey's performance as "luminous, " which is how it struck me. I thought the husband/manager's coke mania was overdone, until I looked at Jeff Wald's bio and... yes, he was a legendary coke fiend.

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Syd
Posted: Sun Jan 03, 2021 2:46 pm Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 21 May 2004 Posts: 12681 Location: Norman, Oklahoma
gromit wrote:
I always associate Delta Dawn with Tanya Tucker. But now I see the recording history was rather muddled, with a lot of folks recording it around the same time. Two fairly unknowns recorded the song (including the songwriter), and then Reddy, Tucker and Better Midler all recorded it around the same time. I don't think I ever heard Midler's version, so I'm d/l-ing it now.


Midler's version was quite good. It was to be an A-Side, but they flipped it when Reddy's version came out. Midler got a hit, too, but it was "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy."

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gromit
Posted: Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:14 am Reply with quote
Joined: 31 Aug 2004 Posts: 8869 Location: Shanghai
The Warriors is mostly fun.
I hadn't seen it in a long time.
It reminded me of The Omega Man, everyone against you.
And probably similar to many zombie flicks, but I don't watch those.

I like the set-up with all the gangs meeting a charismatic leader seeking to unite them. And how a Warrior sees the shooting so they get blamed/scapegoated. I think they had fun coming up with costume designs for all the various city gangs. Though it is a little hard to imagine that there really is a gang who all dress like mimes, and another who dress as NY Yankees with face paint. Seems you just might stand out a little and be easily identifiable to the police. But it's fun, and presents a goofy cool adversary complete with baseball bats.

Of course, the idea that 8 Warriors could devastate dozens of Orphans, and then go on to beat down a few dozen Yankees while only suffering a small cut on one Warriors arm, is rather fantastic.

The two weak spots are the gang that did the actual killing and blame it on the Warriors have next to zero motivation for taking such a huge and dangerous risk. The gang leader/shooter says that he likes to stir things up or some such flippancy. And the Hispanic girl who mouths off, leaves the Orphans and joins the Warriors. It's kind of fun and adds a female character but also is a bit silly and not terribly believable.

It's a gauntlet type film. A chase film. And the film doesn't worry much about motivations. I was sort of amused how the film's urban logic made the subway the only method of transport except for on foot. And how safe they felt enclosed in a subway car. For some reason they never think of stealing a car or grabbing a taxi. And the guiding idea that they'll be safe once they get back to Coney Island seems rather naive.

But as an action adventure film it works pretty well.
I like the simple set up and then the chase is on.

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bartist
Posted: Wed Jan 06, 2021 8:45 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 27 Apr 2010 Posts: 6702 Location: Black Hills
Trying to make a list of films dealing with coups, attacks on government buildings, that sort of thing. (ya know, something totally escapist...) About two-thirds of the list I've got so far might be worth watching or rewatching, so I'm trying to dig up a few more. Any suggs welcomed.


Elysium
Death of Stalin
Seven Days in May
Z
White House Down
Olympus has Fallen
Post Mortem (Spain, 2012)
The Day of the Jackal
The Colony (2015)
The Parallax View
The Good Shepherd
Three Days of the Condor
...and last but not least...
The Man Churian Canned, I Date

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gromit
Posted: Wed Jan 06, 2021 10:17 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 31 Aug 2004 Posts: 8869 Location: Shanghai
Mars Attacks!

The Battle of Chile (terrific documentary)

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Syd
Posted: Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:31 am Reply with quote
Site Admin Joined: 21 May 2004 Posts: 12681 Location: Norman, Oklahoma
Dave (if you think about it).

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gromit
Posted: Fri Jan 08, 2021 1:24 am Reply with quote
Joined: 31 Aug 2004 Posts: 8869 Location: Shanghai
Re-watched Precious.
Still a pretty powerful drama.
I imagine not many have seen the inner workings of a dysfunctional violent family -- abuse of various sorts. While Mo'Nique and Sibides are unusual and effective presences. I also like Mariah Carey as an urban social worker.
And the alternative school class is interesting and well-cast.

I'm less enamored of the fantasy sequences. They are fine in theory -- intentionally stark contrasts from Precious' harsh reality -- but the tone/style they used was just too distracting.

I'm glad I rewatched it. Original viewing I thought it was real depressing and bitter which made it hard to separate the film from the storyline.
______________________________________________________

Actually Precious' life is fairly similar to what Lisa Montgomery, the woman Trump is suddenly in a hurry to execute, went through.
https://www.thenation.com/article/society/lisa-montgomery-execution-federal/

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bartist
Posted: Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:31 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 27 Apr 2010 Posts: 6702 Location: Black Hills
Syd wrote:
Dave (if you think about it).


(smacks forehead) Of course. And the scene near the end, with people melting out of the room behind Frank Langella, seems to resonate with the past week.

LoL Mars Attacks.

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bartist
Posted: Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:32 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 27 Apr 2010 Posts: 6702 Location: Black Hills
https://www.npr.org/2021/01/08/955128728/michael-apted-director-of-the-up-documentary-series-dies-at-79

Wonder if someone will take over, on the "Up" series.

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