Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2020 on: August 31, 2019, 05:08:59 AM »
dark phoenix

it was shitty.  one of the most emotionless movies i've seen in a long, long time.  i guess the set piece on the train was cool, but that's really the only good thing i can say about dark phoenix.

way to fuck that one up, fox.  0 out of 420 stars.
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Offline rooster

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2021 on: September 01, 2019, 08:25:03 AM »
Spider-Man: Far from Home was garbage.
I'm so excited to say that I agree with Snupes on an MCU movie for once. I didn't see the first Tom Holland Spiderman movie because I dislike Spiderman, but I saw the second because I visited my mom and she wanted to see it. Anyway, it was 100% dull and lifeless. The "twist" was so predictable and boring I felt bad for Gyllenhaal. Worst MCU movie I've seen in awhile.

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Offline Snupes

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2022 on: September 02, 2019, 11:20:05 AM »
I was starting to wonder if I was insane. Thank you, lol
Quote from: garygreen date=1480782226
i also took an online quiz that said i was a giraffe.  and i guess you're dumb enough to believe that i must be because the internet said so.

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Offline Snupes

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2023 on: September 04, 2019, 03:19:48 AM »
Started trying to check out some anime to find some that aren't garbage. I watched the first few episodes of The Promised Neverland, Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash, and Mononoke.

The Promised Neverland had some of the worst dialogue and exposition I've ever seen in anime, which is a shame since the core conceit/twist is interesting enough. I just cannot stand shows that treat me like a child that needs everything spoon-fed to them. So I'm probably done with that one.

Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash actually has pretty good writing, a neat world, and wonderful animation so far. That said...the women. Dear god. I hope it gets better, but it feels like it's written by a horny 13-year old. I haven't cringed so much watching an anime in a long time. Like, it's really, really bad. I may try to finish it, but we'll see.

Then Mononoke. This show is absolutely wonderful so far. It's an anthology sort of series, each story being about two episodes long (sometimes three if it needs more time), but the show is so lean and well-made that nothing is ever overlong. It's basically focused around Japanese folklore and mononoke (similar to youkai, but mononoke are spirits that tend to be more malevolent) and the Medicine Man, a mysterious medicine peddler who goes around trying to seal these creatures. To do so, he has to discover their "form" (what shape they take, what are they), "truth" (what is their purpose, what are they here for), and "reason" (what do they want), all of which unfold very naturally throughout the episode. The art style is gorgeous but definitely would put off some people.

I'm gonna keep digging because I know there are good anime out there, despite my experience to the contrary.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2019, 03:21:32 AM by Snupes »
Quote from: garygreen date=1480782226
i also took an online quiz that said i was a giraffe.  and i guess you're dumb enough to believe that i must be because the internet said so.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2024 on: September 16, 2019, 10:40:03 PM »
Peanut Butter Falcon

Entertaining movie, reminded me of many round earthers here.
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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2025 on: October 23, 2019, 01:59:54 PM »
20 Remote Controlled Batarangs/20: A Batshit Odyssey Returns!

Batman Returns (dir. Tim Burton)

Batman's second outing under the joint stewardship of Burton and Keaton is also his last. Burton was not interested in doing another sequel, and Warner Bros. execs were concerned about the dark tone of Burton's films. The impasse thus formed led to the two quasi-neo-Batmania (I did the Kenosha Kid, I can do the Popcrit too) films directed by Joel Schumacher. Would that they could have seen their Snyderian future. Perhaps some did, those poor Cassandras of the executive suite. But it's understandable: with the first Batman a big success, Burton was granted greater control over the sequel, and all that was suggestively fairytale and carnival of that first effort is foreground and writ large here. I always liked this film as a kid, it was equal parts goofy and nasty, vibrant and sinister, a cartoonish noir fantasy of the urban Gothic. But unlike the original Burton outing it has not been a film that I have thought about much since my childhood, let alone watched. Will it hold up? Let's find out! I wrote this introductory paragraph before I even sat down to watch the film, so I literally do not know, but of course will have known for at least day or two by the time you get to the second paragraph.

Sidestepping any pretence of suspense, I can reveal that I had a blast watching this again, it's seriously off-the-rails, wacky, hilarious, and occasionally violent. I don't think the executive, or indeed critical assessment that it was too dark is at all fair. In comparison to the previous film, its dark parts are darker, but its light parts are lighter. Burton managed to ramp up the expressionist inspiration of the first film by putting it everywhere, not just in the architecture, the light and the shadows, but in the comedy, in the story, in the characters. Everything is heightened, more extreme, more sharply contrasted. While many would blame Burton's successor Joel Schumacher for turning this first WB Batman series into an over-the-top silly cartoon, in a lot of ways Burton was already there. Consider the rooftop fight between Batman and Catwoman: Batman knocks her to the floor (Catwoman was an asshole etc.), she says “how could you? I'm a woman,” Batman drops his guard with concern for her, allowing her to get the upper hand and hang him over the ledge with her whip. It might as well be Adam West's Bruce Wayne falling for Miss Kitka in his pursuit of improving US-Soviet relations.

The set-up to the story is a bit more complicated than that of the first film. An armed gang of circus performers attacks a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Gotham Square with the aim of kidnapping Max Shreck, a wealthy industrialist who is giving a speech there. Shreck escapes but falls through a mechanised grate into the sewer lair of the Penguin, who was abandoned by his parents as a baby and now wishes to return to human society. Shreck is eventually able to return to his office, having a made a deal with the Penguin. Upon arriving there he learns that his bumbling secretary Selina Kyle has been snooping in his private files and has discovered that his big plan, a new power plant, is actually a device by which he can suck up the city's power for himself and hold it to ransom. To shut her up, he pushes her from a high window, killing her. Her body attracts a bunch of street cats who inexplicably bring her back to life, imbuing her with the agility, reflexes, and folkloric nine lives of a cat, as well as engendering the emergence of a dangerous new side to her personality. At another public gathering, one of the circus gang members kidnaps the Mayor's baby and descends down an open manhole only to be “defeated” by who else but the Penguin. Ascending above ground with the baby in his arms, Penguin becomes an instant hero and press sensation, prompting Batman to investigate.

The focus of the film in the beginning is definitely on the villains. Batman shows up to fight off the circus gang at the tree lighting event, but the film wants us to know Penguin and Catwoman and Shreck. And why not? We know an awful lot about Bruce Wayne and his alter ego from the previous film, but almost everything else starts over from zero. So we have origin stories galore for each of the villains except Shreck himself. Although Penguin is this film's equivalent of the Joker, Shreck is in truth the main villain of the story. He abuses and parasitises both Penguin and Catwoman for his own gain, and his latest business venture seeks to do the same thing to Gotham itself. Max Schreck, for whom the character was named, was a German silent film actor best known for playing the vampire in the original Nosferatu, and was even fictionalised as a vampire himself. Like Shreck's impeccable wardrobe, the reference is extravagantly worn, he leeches the blood of the city while posing as its prime benefactor, and though the name refers to Count Orlok, the look and portrayal are definitely owed to Dracula. He is possessed of a kind of agelessness, serving as the embodiment of the concept of avarice.

It doesn't get an origin story of its own, but even Gotham seems somewhat different this time around. It maintains its larger than life architecture and its distortions of space and form, but the overall feel is different, and it's not just the Christmas lights. In the first film so much of the city seemed to be made up of pipes and vents, its theme was industrial sprawl, we were invited to hang around with the lowlife of the city, like rats crawling through the pipes. Jack Napier becomes the Joker in a chemical factory, Oswald Cobblepot is born the Penguin in a practically Victorian aristocratic home. The setting moves from the industrial to the commercial, to the political. This time the true villain is puppetmaster capitalist Shreck, a white collar criminal, a self-assured untouchable of the top floor penthouse class. The action takes place at political events, plush offices, government buildings, high-rise apartments, department stores, all of which tie back either directly or at least in some way to Shreck.
 
Cobblepot's ambition to reclaim his birthright as an aristocrat is seized upon by Shreck, who thrusts him into a campaign against the incumbent mayor, who is having difficulty containing the chaos caused by the circus gang, which is of course being run by Cobblepot himself. This sub-plot, based on two episodes of the 1960s TV show, presents itself as Preston Sturges by way of Burtmania, and it kind of works. The big climax revolves around Bruce Wayne's infamous CD scratching. It is actually possible to scratch a CD like a vinyl record, albeit not in the way that happens in this scene. It's either an ass-pull or an acceptable “of course he did” as we learn that Batman secretly recorded Penguin talking shit about Gotham's citizens during one of their encounters. Wayne uses the sound clips when he hacks into the PA system at a Cobblepot for Mayor rally, prompting everyone to suddenly produce rotten fruit and veg to hurl at him. The knowing silliness of the film is, once again, much closer to the Batmania style than many people seem to think. And I haven't even gotten to the rocket launcher penguins yet, or the remote control Batmobile arcade ride. This film has so many wacky setpieces that it's hard to know which to address and in what order.

Like the film itself, I'm going to suddenly veer off topic here to talk about Catwoman. She has a lot going for her over the previous female lead. Vicki Vale was kind of a one note damsel in distress despite being a war photographer. Selina Kyle is the opposite of that, well, at least she becomes the opposite of that. When we first see her she seems like a laughtrack sitcom character, replete with knowingly corny one-liners and an impossibly ditzy manner. Whe she is pushed out of the window and resurrected by the street cats, she retains this basic personality, particularly her penchant for one-liners, but she has taken on a crazed femme fatale persona with a DIY aesthetic, stapling together her Catwoman costume from a cut-up old coat and fashioning claws out of various materials she has lying around the apartment. She proceeds to wage a one woman war against her murderer, Shreck, blowing up his department store, and later plots to assassinate him at a masked ball he is hosting.

While the other villains have an adversarial relationship with Batman in the case of Penguin, and Bruce Wayne in the case of Shreck, Catwoman/Selina Kyle is presented as a mirror image of Batman/Bruce Wayne. As their unmasked selves they begin a romance, while their night-prowling alter egos clash violently atop Gotham's high rooftops. These relationships escalate in their intensity until somethin's gotta give, and give it do. The impossibly cheesy refrain “mistletoe can be deadly if you eat it / but a kiss can be even deadlier if you mean it” reveals the double life of each to the other, threatening to immediately throw their already quite bizarre relationship out of the frying pan and into ripping their masks off while electrocuting Christopher Walken in a sewer tunnel. Different strokes for different folks. Bruce tries to save Selina from herself in the dramatic climax, but her suicidally pathological desire for revenge against Shreck proves too strong.

While Returns has never been as well received or fondly remembered as its predecessor, it does offer... and I won't say “depth”, because there is nothing deep about it, it's a film about people in ridiculous costumes hitting each other after all, but I think it is a richer film, with greater thematic unity and complexity than the 1989 Batman. That film, as much as I love it, is quite superficial, its conflicts basic, its characters archetypal and not much beyond that. The Joker is a villain who must be stopped, end of. Returns, through Catwoman, Penguin, and Shreck, forces Batman to reckon with possible other versions of himself. While the latter two are closer to the “must be stopped, end of” side of things, and this despite the nascent tragedy of the Penguin's origin story, it is Catwoman who drives a sword of ambiguity right through the moral heart of the main character. While The Killing Joke propelled into the public consciousness the idea of Batman and Joker as two sides of the same coin, something that has been echoed strongly in a great many Batman stories since, Batman Returns gives a more multifaceted take on the dual nature of Bruce Wayne's life, and how he is just a few steps removed from the villainy he fights both in and out of costume. On top of that, it's just a big ol' fun ol' cartoon of a movie, and I think it's pretty great.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2019, 02:08:07 PM by Crudblud »

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2026 on: January 01, 2020, 02:35:09 PM »
Batman Forever (dir. Joel Schumacher)

Let's begin by being as clear as possible. This film sucks. It really sucks. I'm aware that people might think Batman & Robin a more memorably bad film, and it probably is, since I must admit that, in the time between my father taking me to see it in the cinema and the viewing I undertook for this review, I had pretty much forgotten everything about Forever except for one or two things, but make no mistake: this is a diabolically confused mess of no small magnitude. Initially it may have shown some promise, as Joel Schumacher wanted it to be an adaptation of Frank Miller's much lauded Batman: Year One, one of the comics of the late 1980s that defined the modern idea of Batman, but the project was gradually transformed into something that was most decidedly not that. Batman Forever is sometimes described as a throwback to the Batmania of the 1960s, but in making that comparison people seem to forget that while that version of Batman was very silly, it knew what it was doing and carried itself with a warmth and affability that made it very fun to watch. What we have here is a charmless, directionless, oddly cold and synthetic vision of a Batman without purpose.
 
So, what happened? How the hell should I know. Tim Burton and Michael Keaton were originally attached for a third and probably final entry in their Batman series, with the working title “Batman Continues”, and then they ceased to be so. It seems that from the start Warner Bros. execs were actively pushing Burton to go lighter in response to the (in my view wrongly) perceived “darkness” of Batman Returns, so it's likely that at least some of the nigh unutterable stupidity that goes on in the finished product was there from near the beginning of its production. At the very least we know the character of Chase Meridian was there in the early stages, since Burton had already cast Rene Russo in the role. So while Joel Schumacher often gets the blame for this movie and its sequel, it seems that here at least he was simply the chump they brought on board to clean up whatever mess had been left behind in the wake of Burton's departure, and was later left fumbling even more blindly as Keaton followed suit and walked away. Of course, we know Burton later signed back on with the project as producer, since his name is pretty much the first thing you see in the opening credits, and while the question “why?” might be intriguing, I'll leave that where it is in favour of simply discussing the mess that is the film itself rather than the mess surrounding it.
 
With a film as confused and scrappy as Batman Forever, it's hard to know exactly where to begin. Normally a plot synopsis would suffice, but the plot itself may be the least remarkable thing about the film, not just because the rest of it is so misguided on pretty much every level, but also because it barely even registers as a story told. The stakes are clear-ish, but none of them has any weight. We are told for example that Riddler's machine will suck all the intelligence out of Gotham's citizens and pump it straight into his brain, yet at no point does this ever actually seem to happen. I mean, we see the machine working, allegedly, yet the Riddler's level of intelligence never seems to rise above that of a small child thrown into a bathtub full of sugar at any point during the film. It's easy enough to joke that the writers weren't smart enough to write the Riddler as a super genius, especially since, as we shall see, they were hardly capable of writing the Riddler at all, but when you realise that they weren't even able to write an accurate if fairly shallow elaboration on the phrase “idiot box”, that's when you start to consider just how much of this particular iceberg's mass is hidden below the water line.
 
While the film pays a little lip service to its villains' defining traits every now and then, neither of Batman's foes really maintains more than a passing resemblance to his namesake from the source material; Two-Face is basically “Joker with a Coin”, while Riddler is “Jim Carrey Funny Moments 10 Hour Compilation SO RANDOM!!! xD”. So when the two get together you're essentially left with a pair of failed Joker auditions sandwiched together into a sort of villainous near non-entity, a duo of (in the sincerest mode of charity) embryonic personalities crushed under the weight of conflicting and unrealistic expectations: don't recall Burton, but also play bigger than Nicholson. For Batman Returns, both Danny DeVito and Michelle Pfeiffer understood well enough that their characters could not simply be sartorially differentiated retreads of Nicholson's Joker, that to step out from under his shadow they would have to find their own voices, their own physicalities. Whatever you think of them, they cannot reasonably be accused of copying their predecessor, and I suppose in their results neither Tommy Lee Jones nor Jim Carrey could be accused of resembling Nicholson's Joker either, but it is clear enough to me from what they seem to intend to be doing on screen that they were being pushed in that direction. Indeed, I get the feeling that the goal of this film from the studio's perspective was to spiritually retcon Batman Returns.

Perhaps the worst thing about these rather horrible portrayals is that it's very difficult to tell who is at fault, since at least in the case of Jones I want someone else to blame. Carrey I could probably leave to the wolves, but as we see from later performances in his career, much as with Robin Williams, a good director can rein him in and channel his naturally extreme energy in the service of pathos, which on some level is a state to which most Batman villains can aspire. So there at least we might blame screenplay or direction, although it is possible that Carrey, whose star was arcing very high in the Hollywood sky at that time, was granted executive carte blanche to “Carrify” his performance as much as he liked. One thing is certain: something went very, very wrong. Whether it is the character's totally unbelievable claim to being a genius scientist, his terrible one liners which seem to come out of some deep recess of juvenile tastelessness, so deep that I can hardly believe real grown adults actually came up with them, or his mediocre attempts at being anything remotely resembling a threat to anyone whatsoever, the Riddler is simply bad in this film. Sure, he's supposed to be insufferable, his whole shtick by and large is that he envies Batman's intellect and wants to outdo him by the most spectacular means possible, in one of the comics he even goes to extremes in an attempt to drive Batman insane, but the insufferability of Carrey's Riddler seems to be almost entirely directed at the audience, so many of his cringe-worthy verbal eruptions are made when no one else is around that it is hard to believe I am not being personally targeted when he screams “joygasm!!!” after blowing up the batmobile.
 
With Jones, you might be tempted to exclaim “who the fuck knows”. It may be that an actor used to playing fairly down to earth dramatic roles might struggle to walk a mile in the larger than life shoes of a comic book villain, but really his delivery matches the garbled lines he has to work with, so in that sense at least he did a good job. Indeed, short of walking off the set while telling the writers to shove their dialogue up their arses in whatever form should prove least comfortable, Jones could probably not have done any better. Two-Face is a complicated character, on the one hand he is still Harvey Dent, a former District Attorney, much closer to the kinds of roles Jones had usually played up to this point; on the other he has succumbed to a sort of scarring of the mind equal to the scarring of his face, such that the ideal of blind justice is taken to extremes with the aid of a defaced coin, pure chance, a fifty-fifty split. The character is then dramatically compelling fare for a film, a dark mirror of Batman's own dual nature to match Returns' Catwoman, yet here he is, as I said before, treated as “Joker with a Coin”. Jones is not really given the basis of Harvey Dent to expand from, and any sense of Two-Face's actual character is subsumed into a shambolic medley of cackles, mumbles, and circus ringmaster pomp, yet the gravest crime committed is not that he barely resembles himself, but that for all his gun-waving, coin-flipping antics he is about as threatening, about as compelling, and about as tragic as a slightly misshapen Werther's Original.
 
Now might be the time to mention that this film, and indeed its sequel, are intended as continuations of the Burton films. The only real on-screen confirmation of this is the presence of Michael Gough as Alfred Pennyworth, the stalwart and stately butler of Wayne Manor. Of course, he too has not survived the transition from Burtmania to whatever the hell this is. He is reduced to playing a doddering old man who is easily fooled by the buffoonery of fake trick or treaters that couldn't have been less convincing even if they had been dressed up as the titular villains from Killer Klownz from Outer Space. He is at his best in his few scenes with Dick Grayson, here played by Chris O'Donnell, forming perhaps the only relationship in the film that comes close to resembling genuine human interaction. O'Donnell is probably the most likeable major screen presence in the film, and while his Robin is more akin to the wayward Jason Todd than your typical Dick Grayson, he doesn't do too badly with the fairly shoddy material he has to work with. But the inclusion of Robin at the halfway point of the film immediately comes across as an unnecessary addition to a stage that is already overcrowded, albeit by a bunch of cardboard cut-outs and other non-entities, and it is through this perpetual narrative greed that the film's confused identity is matched by its confused focus. There's a reason Two-Face essentially retreats behind Riddler later on in the film, this being that the writers, or perhaps meddlers from the darker recesses of the studio system, began to realise that the film was trying to contain too much stuff and basically jamming it in any which way it could, such that the audience is left trying to navigate a room where two thirds of the doorway are blocked by furniture and the floor itself is totally covered with stacked chairs, tables, and garishly upholstered sofas, none of which can be sat upon or at with any comfort. Forever lacks any of the sense of proportion, balance, tonal continuity, or purposeful storytelling that grounded and propelled the action of its predecessors.

Possibly the most notable difference when comparing this film to the previous two is the near total absence of Gotham City itself. In the Burton films we are often treated to shots of its bustling streets, political and social events, alleyway robberies and so forth. Batman feels for all his high-tech gadgetry like a street level crime fighter; he has amassed his formidable arsenal essentially to save people who, just like his own parents, take a wrong turn on their way home from the theatre, to fight the rot that festers in the dark corners of the city, and to instil fear in the hearts of the cowardly and superstitious lot that lie in wait in the long shadows. Because we see almost nothing of Gotham except for some rather unappealing CG cityscapes devoid of so much as even Lowry-esque stick-figure crowds, Batman's crusade is made to feel like a vanity project, this sense not being helped by his ludicrously flashy vehicles and, yes, his overly sculpted suit, replete with injection moulded nipples and “dummy thicc” rear end. Bruce Wayne of course first donned the cowl for personal reasons, but Batman do what he do with a view to upholding values that actual human beings tend to hold as universal: justice, crime and punishment, rehabilitation, mercy. Here the entire world seems to exist for a handful of characters, anyone else who might happen to appear in frame is so much ephemeral, almost accidental decoration, you might even take them for ghosts from the previous films still haunting select interior spaces of a now largely abandoned Gotham. Along with the art design, this feeling would be surreal were it not so eminently forgettable.
 
Also notable for its absence, the brooding neo-Wagnerian score that Danny Elfman provided for the two Burton films. Elliot Goldenthal was brought in to try and unify through music the fecklessly assembled budget caterer's buffet of half-baked characters with some of that good ol' leitmotivic special sauce. Goldenthal sort of apes Elfman here and there, but his themes are not as memorable, and we are at no point given the impression of a Batman, a crusader who roams the night seeking justice, but rather being told “look, it's Batman, there he goes, being Batman”. It has the slimy wool-over-the-eyes quality of a carpetbagger. We can never really quite believe that what we're hearing is the soundtrack to Batman, and like the film itself the soundtrack reads like a knock-off competitor hastily rolled out to make a buck. Things do not get better when we look at the attempts to lend weight to the villains through scoring. Two-Face's music, which Goldenthal has rather bafflingly claimed was inspired by Prokofiev and Shostakovich, fails to ground Tommy Lee Jones's messy performance with thematic stability because it is itself a complete mess of noisy effects, only serving to heighten the incoherence of the portrayal. Meanwhile, the Riddler is mismatched with a theremin heavy throwback to old science fiction scores, attempting to play up the intended mad scientist character, but instead hammering home just how little Carrey's performance matches anything of that description.
 
But what of Batman himself? This is after all a Batman film. Well, sad to say, this iteration of the caped crusader, played by Val Kilmer, is neither equal to the task of succeeding Michael Keaton nor recalling the light-hearted straightman act of Adam West. I bring up West because, by all accounts, Forever is supposed to be the return of Batmania. As I said in my review of Batman Returns, Burton was already doing Batmania, especially in that film, but apparently cheesy rhymes about mistletoe and DJ scratching CDs are just too dark for kids. Pouty-lips Kilmer is not dark, but he is hardly light either, being at best a neutral earth tone, inoffensive at the side of his garish counterparts. It is only when you see him away from the obscuring presence of these paltry interlocutors that you realise he might as well be a potted plant, for that is basically the level of expressivity he manages to reach in any given scene. He's cracking a joke with Alfred, he's bashing down a door to try to save a life, he's in a bank vault that is suspended from a helicopter and inexplicably filling up with acid; his plain and immutable foliage of an expression is not so much a reassuring anchor of calm and stability as it is the face of a man who is trying not to show how bewildered he is by the fact that he is in Batman Forever. This makes the scene in which he turns to camera and smiles quite surprising, but probably not in the way the director intended. It is surprising not just because Kilmer's face has been in a single and completely different configuration the entire film up to that point, but because the change occurs over the non-person that is Chase Meridian.
 
Meridian, played by Nicole Kidman, is a woman what gets kidnapped, and that's basically the entirety of who she is. Meridian succeeds only in making me nostalgic for Vicki Vale, who was easily the weakest part of the 1989 Batman, but there are some interesting points to consider when comparing the two love interests. Vale is essentially a bystander who is rescued by Batman, and their relationship deepens as the Joker begins to take a perverse interest in her. Vale is a fairly typical damsel in distress, but there is a developmental line that is established and followed over the course of the film, and it begins with her resisting her colleague's fascination with the Batman myth. Meridian is the opposite, she is already possessed of a consuming obsession with Batman, and she thrusts herself into his path as often as possible. She makes herself the damsel in distress, but at no point in the film is this questioned, critiqued, or even so much as addressed in passing. Unlike the villains, I can't even criticise Kidman for turning in a bad performance, she has almost no character to portray, and the most consistently surprising thing about Meridian's relationship with Batman and Bruce Wayne is that he continues to fall harder and harder for what can at best be described as a cardboard cut-out of a woman. While it is a lazy criticism, the entire “why” of the romance subplot may be best explained as follows: because it's in the script.
 
So that's Batman Forever, two hours of people you're never given a reason to care about doing things that make no sense because Warner Bros. wanted a kid friendly Batman movie, or rather because they desperately didn't want another Tim Burton Batman movie. The film has the sense of having been guided so much by what it was to avoid, rather than by what it was to aim for, that it spends most of its duration in the violent throes of an identity crisis that is only resolved in the end by the realisation and acceptance that it in fact has no identity at all. Its synthetic, contrived narrative, character portrayals, and locations all combine into an offensively bland mush, and even the most refined of gourmands would be hard pressed to identify even one flavour in this broth spoiled not by too many cooks but by a disorganised kitchen led by a head chef who didn't even know the recipe. It is not in thrall to the crass commercialism that permeates its infamous sequel, but its lack of even this as some kind of defining characteristic leaves it shambling in a pile of its own mess, miserable and forgotten down in the shadowy sewers where lie yesteryear's most fleeting of pop cultural dalliances.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2027 on: January 04, 2020, 09:04:13 AM »
The Death of Stalin (dir. Armando Iannucci)

Hilarious yet unflinchingly bleak farce depicting a loosely historically accurate version of the internecine struggles at the very top of the Soviet Union following Stalin's death. While the film is obviously set in Russia and the characters are all Russian, the cast is mostly British and American, and the actors all use their regular (or close to regular) voices, so you get for example Nikita Khrushchev with a Brooklyn accent courtesy of Steve Buscemi. While the film features too many excellent performances both large and small to list without succumbing to fatigue, Simon Russell Beale absolutely fucking kills it in his role as Lavrentiy Beria, one of the most shockingly vile figures of the Stalin era. Really just a brilliant film from start to finish.

Also, shout out to the original music by Chris Willis, who does a very good job of capturing the feel of Soviet era classical music, particularly Shostakovich, whose music has always sounded to me like a soundtrack in need of a movie.

You Were Never Really Here (dir. Lynne Ramsay)

Sort of a psychological anti-thriller in which Joaquin Phoenix plays a hired killer contracted to rescue a politician's daughter from an underground sex trafficking ring. It's very atmospheric and well paced, and the subtly rich portrayal of the central character is compelling. The child sex abuse theme might be difficult for some viewers to stomach, but the strong central performance and uncompromising direction makes the film very much worth a watch.

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2028 on: January 12, 2020, 10:04:40 PM »
(2019) Sam Mendes - 1917

Wow wow wow. I'm rattled and shook. Utterly stunning. I begrudgingly saw it with my dad because he really wanted to, even though I generally don't find war movies very interesting, but I was so gripped by the story, the acting, the cinematography, the film in its entirety, and I even sobbed at the end (wow shock I know). Amazing film.
Quote from: garygreen date=1480782226
i also took an online quiz that said i was a giraffe.  and i guess you're dumb enough to believe that i must be because the internet said so.

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Offline Lord Dave

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2029 on: January 19, 2020, 09:35:30 PM »
Harley Quinn (TV Series 2019)

I just binged this and while it is a parody sitcom, it's decently written and done up.  I'm enjoying the journey of watching Harley move through a male dominated supervillian world to become a member of the Legion of Doom and outshine her Ex.

It's kinda odd though to see so much graphic violence and death while also having the main character specifically not kill innocents (ie. civillians, non-guards, etc...).  As was put, Harley is "Broadcast Bad."  Still, an enjoyable ride thus far.

Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2030 on: January 24, 2020, 03:25:45 AM »
just watched the first episode of star trek: picard, and it was significantly better than i thought it would be.

20 years after the events of nemesis, picard lives in france, hangs out getting drunk with his dog, and writes a bunch of idiot history books.  he also has some romulan slaves in charge of running his plantation vineyard.  the romulan sun went supernova in 2009 and killed a bunch of dumb romulans, and picard tried to get the federation to save the population.  but apparently the federation is all MAGA now and hates immigrants, so picard quit star fleet.  he kept the slaves, though.  also the new United Federation of Fascists is super racist against androids now.  they're illegal.

my main beef with e01 was the pacing.  i think this should've been two episodes.  the plot picks up when some stranger shows up at picard's plantation and starts ranting about killing a bunch of people, and picard is just like "yes okay this is all making sense, please come inside."  the whole thing just moved way too fast.  take and episode to set the stage and build some plausible foreshadowing.  and of course because the pace is so fast, they cover ground with a lot of exposition. 

but whatever, that's pretty typical of the series in general.  i can live with it.
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Offline Snupes

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2031 on: February 06, 2020, 03:45:03 AM »
GLOW (Season 1, 2017)

What a rollercoaster of feelings. I wasn't really excited for this and I only really checked it out because I was incredibly bored and really wanted to watch something but the Twilight Zone reboot was boring as shit. During episode one I fluctuated between thinking it's pretty good to thinking it's awful, and the following episode or two I was ready to drop it as schlocky misogynistic trash. But, once the gimmicks were set and the characters were all introduced, the show began such a wonderful deep dive into everyone as people and completely yanked the rug out from right under me. There's so much natural and well-done development, great plot and pacing, and while it's definitely not the deepest work of art in the world it definitely strives to be more than just a fun show. That and the fact that it has so much heart and everyone is clearly deeply invested just pulled me right in, and I couldn't not see it through.

And I know me crying doesn't have much impact by this point, but I cried a few times for what it's worth. Psyched and ready for the next few seasons.
Quote from: garygreen date=1480782226
i also took an online quiz that said i was a giraffe.  and i guess you're dumb enough to believe that i must be because the internet said so.

Offline stryfy

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2032 on: February 06, 2020, 09:55:07 AM »
I watched  Marvel in my recliner and slept all movie onmy new recliner >o< I think recliner is the best place for sleeping for me. I found that chair on review thebestreclinersreviews next time I want to buy recliner for gaming.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2020, 11:47:30 AM by stryfy »

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Offline rooster

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2033 on: February 11, 2020, 11:15:42 PM »
GLOW (Season 1, 2017)

What a rollercoaster of feelings. I wasn't really excited for this and I only really checked it out because I was incredibly bored and really wanted to watch something but the Twilight Zone reboot was boring as shit. During episode one I fluctuated between thinking it's pretty good to thinking it's awful, and the following episode or two I was ready to drop it as schlocky misogynistic trash. But, once the gimmicks were set and the characters were all introduced, the show began such a wonderful deep dive into everyone as people and completely yanked the rug out from right under me. There's so much natural and well-done development, great plot and pacing, and while it's definitely not the deepest work of art in the world it definitely strives to be more than just a fun show. That and the fact that it has so much heart and everyone is clearly deeply invested just pulled me right in, and I couldn't not see it through.

And I know me crying doesn't have much impact by this point, but I cried a few times for what it's worth. Psyched and ready for the next few seasons.
Love that show. I've definitely cried a few times as well while watching it.

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Offline honk

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Re: Just Watched
« Reply #2034 on: February 21, 2020, 11:45:40 PM »
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (Bob Perischetti, Peter Ramsey & Rodney Rothman, 2018)

Beautifully animated, vibrantly colorful, and very funny at times, this is easily the best Spidey movie since Spider-Man 2. I do wish the climax hadn't been another stupid fucking skybeam, though.

Knives Out (Rian Johnson, 2019)

This was fantastic. Johnson's love of "classic" murder mysteries is written all over this movie, and yet it's so brilliantly written that everything feels entirely original and subversive in the best way possible. In stark contrast to The Last Jedi, which I felt devoted far too much time to a meandering subplot that failed to meaningfully add to the story by the movie's end, there is not a wasted minute here. The cast is terrific too, and I really liked how Daniel Craig's silly accent, while certainly endearingly goofy, never really distracted from the events of the plot or became a source of "comedy" all by itself. I can't say enough good things about this. It's smart as hell, funny, suspenseful, and a must-watch for mystery fans.
ur retartet but u donut even no it and i walnut tell u y