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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2220 on: October 31, 2022, 04:50:11 PM »
Anyway that being said, I enjoyed it. If you can ignore the flaws it's a fun romp that amazingly just flies by, even with the ridiculous Zach Snyder slo-mo that's littered through. 6/10 would recommend. But just barely.

I saw it yesterday and concur. Now just waiting for saddam's wall of text about it.

I guess I should watch Shazam. Really haven't watched much of whatever DC has been doing lately, but I think they unironically have a chance to do something more compelling than Marvel at the moment.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2221 on: November 18, 2022, 10:57:08 PM »
I'll watch the latest capeshit once a decent version of it is available online. In other generic fantasy news:

House of the Dragon (2022)

It's very tempting for critics of the LotR show to point to this one and argue that it's the perfect "this is how it's done" counterexample, especially given their concurrent airing (something that I guarantee was not a coincidence, even though Amazon will never admit it). And to be sure, the level of technical competence on display puts LotR to shame. Every episode is masterfully crafted by excellent directors and editors, brought to life by terrific actors, and overseen by experienced showrunners who know what they're doing and have a clear vision for what this show is meant to be. But I think people are missing out on properly critiquing HotD if they're only viewing it in the flattering light of how much better it is than LotR, as this show does have some major flaws.

The main issue is how frequently the show jumps ahead in time and recasts its main roles. This may have been something they had to do to properly tell this story, but the effect is rough. The story's momentum feels like it's always being interrupted. More casual viewers will probably be confused by the constantly changing faces. And most importantly, the aged-up versions of the characters we've already seen are so unlike their younger counterparts that they're essentially entirely new characters. Young Rhaenyra is cheerful and enthusiastic; older Rhaenyra is bitter and world-weary. Young Alicent is warm and caring; older Alicent is cold and manipulative. Young Laenor is solemn and dutiful; older Laenor is hedonistic and irresponsible. Young Aemond is creepy and emotionally-stilted, older Aemond is brash and assertive. It's very difficult to maintain a level of investment and interest in characters that are suddenly replaced with ones that look and act so differently.

I also have a few problems with the casting. Emma D'Arcy and Olivia Cooke are fine actresses, and I have no issue with their performances in and of themselves, but they're simply far too young to be playing Rhaenyra and Alicent. The show tries to cover up their youth with some makeup and costuming meant to make them look a little bit older, but it isn't convincing, and the effect is laughable whenever they're side-by-side with actors clearly only a few years younger than them that we're meant to believe are their sons. It's not like D'Arcy and Cooke are huge A-listers that the show couldn't have been made without, after all, and the fact that the show erred so young in casting them really feels to me like more of the weird and shitty habit that movies and TV shows have of avoiding casting actresses above a certain age whenever they can get away with it. Fabien Frankel is similarly too youthful as Criston after the main time skip, but I can at least understand that the show was in a tough position with him, as it would have been really awkward to recast a character who was a grown man and not a teenager from the beginning.

Finally, the ninth episode, "The Green Council," is a pretty bad hour of television. Hinging the central conflict of the show on a ridiculous soap opera-style misunderstanding over which Aegon a dying man was referring to was stupid. The race between Alicent and Otto to find Aegon first made no sense at all - why was it taken for granted that the first one to find him would be the one to decides what he'd do? Both the king's mother and his Hand would have plenty of access to him once he was on the throne. The focus on Arryk and Erryk as if they're suddenly main characters that we totally care about was bizarre and wrongheaded, and the fact that there's no way to tell them apart muddles any appreciation of their character development (Which one expressed unease with putting Aegon on the throne? Which one fought Criston? Which one defected? I don't know! They're fucking identical!). Turning Larys into a weirdo who's into feet robbed him of his mystique. And perhaps worst of all, the big climax with Rhaenys casually slaughtering hundreds of innocent people but then choosing not to kill the only people present that it would have actually made some sense to kill was idiotic to the point of frustration. And the show frames it as an act of magnanimity! That she's doing the right thing by not taking action to avert what promises to be a horrific war, even though she's apparently fine with hundreds of entirely innocent people dying in her wake!

Apart from the above, though, HotD is pretty good overall, and I can't wait for the next season. If you were a fan of GoT but felt burned by its monumentally shitty final season, I'd encourage you to give this one a try.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2023, 02:23:09 AM by honk »
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2222 on: November 30, 2022, 05:04:20 AM »
I saw Black Adam and it was bad
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2223 on: November 30, 2022, 04:39:02 PM »
I saw Black Adam and it was bad

maybe you are bad instead

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2224 on: November 30, 2022, 05:44:07 PM »
Could be
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2225 on: November 30, 2022, 07:53:43 PM »
#bostonbad
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2226 on: January 01, 2023, 10:56:12 PM »
Marriage Story (dir. Noah Baumbach)

As a big fan of Baumbach's previous film The Meyerowitz Stories, I really wanted to like this. It has a lot of good elements, but I think also so many things I didn't like that I'm not really able to say that I liked or disliked it overall. I think, despite Baumbach's characteristic deadpan "realism", I didn't really buy the central relationship, which was just a couple of people being angry jerks. The most intense moments between the two leads played out for me as a kind of hysterical comedy. Structurally I liked that Baumbach committed to doing quite a few long scenes which foregrounded the acting over the directing or editing, but I felt the structure was ultimately too cute in its arcs and repetitions to come across anything like as real as it seemed he wanted it to be. Randy Newman's beautifully orchestrated but cloyingly saccharine score offers neither support nor counterpoint to the tone of the film, instead seeming like it was made for something else. My experience of this film was thus of a bunch of individually mostly (and in some cases very) well done things that didn't really sit together, not even in a way that could be taken as an embodiment of the messiness of the relationship it depicts.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2227 on: January 02, 2023, 08:09:49 PM »
Avatar:The Way of Water

Say what you will about the first Avatar, it was rarely boring. This one is, for long stretches. And the return of not one but two dead cast members from the first, combined with a story of assimilation into a foreign culture that mirrors that of the first, and I find myself wondering if James Cameron was truly interested in telling a compelling story or just going for fanservice.

It's a very pretty movie, just like the first. The effects are top-notch.

4/10, can really only recommend this to Avatar superfans who will see it (and love it) anyway.
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2228 on: January 04, 2023, 08:03:47 AM »
I'm Thinking of Ending Things (dir. Charlie Kaufman)

Anyone who knows me knows I'm a huge mark for Kaufman. With the greatest regret possible for someone not in control of the relevant events in any way, shape or form, Charlie Kaufman will never write a film for Andy Kaufman directed by Lloyd Kaufman. This movie isn't anything like what I imagine that would have been like, but that's fine because it's wonderful in its own way. I see a lot of comparisons to Lynch, but I think people have a habit of defining Lynch as "weird things happening with foreboding sound design". One point where Kaufman and Lynch do run along parallel lines is their love of process, albeit Lynch in the doing, Kaufman in the recording. I'm Thinking of Ending Things can very much be read as a companion piece to Synecdoche, New York, and I have a strong suspicion that your liking for this film will have a clear precedent in your liking for that one. It definitely has a lot of thematic crossover with other Kaufman films as well. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind comes to mind most readily, but I'm Thinking of Ending Things is a much more successful film precisely because it doesn't rely on a twist which, once revealed, makes the rest of the film less interesting. This is one of Kaufman's best films.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2023, 08:05:22 AM by Crudblud »

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2229 on: January 05, 2023, 06:24:45 PM »
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (Rian Johnson, 2022)

While it's still an enjoyable watch due to Daniel Craig's delightfully goofy performance, this is nowhere near as good as Knives Out. I don't like how it's structured. About halfway through the movie, we're presented with a major twist and treated to a lengthy flashback and an exposition dump that tells us what's really going on. It's meant to recontextualize what we've seen in the first half, but to me, it felt more like the movie was awkwardly restarting and trying to cram a whole new story into its remaining runtime. I also feel like Johnson's eagerness to bash Elon Musk comes at the expense of the movie's story, although it's hard to go into details without spoilers. Very briefly, the movie emphasizes that the villainous Musk stand-in is dumb as well as sleazy, and so the crimes he commits are stupid and poorly thought-out. Unfortunately, because this is a mystery film, that essentially means that the plot of the movie itself is stupid and poorly thought-out. I have no love for Musk, but the story of the film is what should always take precedence, not the accuracy of the parallels to real life. I would much rather have a more satisfying story with a Musk stand-in who's a bit less like the real-life Musk than a less satisfying story with a Musk stand-in who's a bit more like the real-life Musk.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2023, 09:47:31 PM by honk »
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2230 on: January 05, 2023, 06:47:33 PM »
The Menu.

It was okay. Kinda dumb. Entertaining enough.
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2231 on: January 06, 2023, 03:49:08 AM »
the wolf of wall street

tbh i don't get why this movie was so highly acclaimed. the first two hours were just the same scene over and over again. jordan narrates himself doing coke and banging hookers. that's really all that happens. things pick up a little bit in the final act, but then the movie just sort of ends.

that said — i actually found it to be pretty entertaining. the cast is great. the script prefers to show and not tell. and it's absolutely hilarious at times. i think each individual scene is fantastic. it's just that there are way too many of them, and they're all the same.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2232 on: January 06, 2023, 03:28:40 PM »
the wolf of wall street

tbh i don't get why this movie was so highly acclaimed.
Outside of the great acting and general entertainment, I think it played into a lot of male fantasies. All of the salesmen I worked with at my first job ate that shit up.

Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2233 on: January 06, 2023, 04:24:01 PM »
Last Night in Soho

Wasn’t what I was expecting although tbh I didn’t know that much about it.
Thought it was worth a look though, it's got Ana Joy whatsherface in, who I quite like, so I asked Santa for the DVD and he obliged.
I liked it. Didn't go where I thought it would but I guess that's a good thing.
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2234 on: January 06, 2023, 05:23:50 PM »
it's got Ana Joy whatsherface in, who I quite like
Ah yes, I too do not know the names of people I like.

It's Anya Taylor-Joy.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2235 on: January 14, 2023, 09:28:36 PM »
Mank (dir. David Fincher)

A not entirely successful venture from David Fincher, who is here swept up in a sort of De Palma fantasy of artifice. The black and white doesn't really seem to do anything to service the story and is merely a case of the presentation being foregrounded. The script is witty and abounds with charm, as does, in my opinion, Gary Oldman's central performance. Yet the meta intent behind the film somewhat misses the mark; for a film about the writing of the script for Citizen Kane, it doesn't reach for the heights of its subject. It is an imitation without purpose, but reasonably enjoyable overall nonetheless. And no, I don't give a shit how much of the story it tells is true.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2236 on: February 02, 2023, 07:54:31 PM »
It's a Cruddy cinema roundup! From least to most recent:

The Happening (dir. M. Night Shyamalan)
I was expecting this to be one of those overhyped "worst movies of all time" that was simply mediocre, but no. This is actually horrifically bad, and enough has been said about it over the years that mercifully I don't have to relive it in detail here.

Fantastic Four (dir. Tim Story)
Casual sexism galore as stupid men get upset about horrible women while also becoming super. Way better than Josh Trank's odious Fant4stic, but still quite horrid.

The Turin Horse (dir. Béla Tarr)
Apocalyptic potato eating and long tracking shots courtesy of the king of slow cinema. Oddly compelling but so slow I had to watch it in instalments.

X-Men (dir. Bryan Singer)
Competent and pretty good fun overall. Certainly makes for a nice change of pace after so many MCU and DCEU movies.

Manifesto (dir. Julian Rosefeldt)
Cate Blanchett dresses up in an array of disguises and reads various manifestos. I'm wary of being too harsh on this since it was originally designed to be seen as part of an installation in which all its vignettes would play simultaneously. Watching them in sequence is pretty tedious, though there are some nice ideas and Blanchett puts a good amount of oratory heft into a rather dry concept.

Ulysse (dir. Agnès Varda)
My first Varda, the French art house legend I've known of for some time but am just now getting around to. This is a short film about a series of photographs she took decades prior and the people who modelled for them. One of the most relaxing films I've ever seen.

Nightmare Alley (dir. Guillermo Del Toro)
Carnival noir! A moody slow burn with a few characteristic Del Toro twists. I had a lot of fun with this one!

Uncut Gems (dir. Joshua and Ben Safdie)
A sacred cow of contemporary cinema, and a much vaunted return to serious cinema for leading man Adam Sandler. I've really enjoyed Sandler in his previous dramatic turns with Punch Drunk Love and The Meyerowitz Stories, so I was disappointed to sit through what amounts to two hours of hateful dullards yelling at each other about nothing. I think you have to be able to sympathise with the Sandler character to care about what happens to him and I just didn't. Another GoodFellas for me.

Antiporno (dir. Sion Sono)
Sono was hired to make a "serious" plot-driven soft porn movie to help revamp Nikkatsu's "Roman Porno" genre in Japan. Sono being Sono, he gave them a postmodern psychodrama about a woman whose life is falling apart as she deals with a terrible grief and the societal double standards for women in Japan. This is an intense film and quite a difficult watch, but a sharp and wildly artsy skewering of misogynistic eroticism. Worth watching if you have the stomach for it.

Event Horizon (dir. Paul W. S. Anderson)
Before the Resident Evil movies, the reason Paul Thomas Anderson has to use his full name was trying to warn us that he by no means should be approached to direct horror movies. A spaceship bends space around itself and teleports to another part of the universe, or does it??? What if I told you it actually went... to hell?!??!?! (prety sppoky huh? lol :3) Cue 90 minutes of swishy tensionless space goings on featuring a crew of morons and a gaping hole where most of the gore was cut out because test audiences just didn't care for it. Most bafflingly, this is essentially a cheesy PG adventure movie that suddenly veers off into spooky town when you least expect it, but you only don't expect it because it doesn't make any sense.

The Other Side of the Wind (dir. Orson Welles)
Yet another legendary lost Orson Welles movie. Welles returned to Hollywood in the 1970s after it had shunned him so many decades before, naturally his first move on being welcomed back was to fashion a cinematic bayonet to stick it with. This is a satire of Hollywood, both Old and New, of auteurism, of art house cinema, of erotic cinema, of critics, of groupies and hangers on, of directors and actors and their debasement and destruction at the hands of a parasitic industry. Perhaps above all it is a self-parody. Gorgeously and chaotically shot in both colour and black and white, and on different kinds of cameras and film stocks, the film records the events of a screening party for an incomplete film by the impish and imperious master Jake Hannaford, played with acerbic aplomb by the great John Huston. Imperfect and still rough, for it was never finished and what we have here is a sort of best guess compiled from over 100 hours of footage and Welles's copious notes, this is nonetheless the kind of film that could only be made by a director who has such complete mastery of their art as to be able to coalesce their love and hate of it into a unified vision.