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Mike O

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20-Jun-2006
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18-Jun-2018
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2307

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Post
#1189669
Topic
Last movie seen
Time

DominicCobb said:

moviefreakedmind said:

DominicCobb said:

moviefreakedmind said:

DominicCobb said:

Honestly, no point badgering DE over it, considering he isn’t going to watch and pretty much never talks about it. Lot less annoying than if he was posting everyday about how Rian Johnson shat on his childhood and murdered Luke’s characterization and ate a baby and wore a lobster sweater once and how it’s clear that Mark Hamill hates him for that or whatever the shit.

Did that stuff happen in the movie?

If it did then I need to go grab a BD copy and give it a watch.

No, sorry for the confusion, Rian was the one who ate a baby and wore a lobster sweater.

Is the footage included in the behind-the-scenes featurettes?

Lobster sweater, yes. Baby eating, no (that’s here: https://www.instagram.com/p/BffVizCD3ew/?utm_source=ig_embed).

I can never unsee that.

The Guardian- Overlong tribute to the Coast Guard. The last film to date from one Andrew Davis. Costner is boring as usual, and Kutcher is also kind of dull, but there are a couple of impressive action set pieces. By no means a terrible film, just a mediocre one which could be a lot better, and really gets bogged down in the middle with the endless training scenes. The character moments almost all feel stock rather than genuine or emotional, but Davis hasn’t lost his action movie touch, and the rescue sequences are appropriately exciting.

Undisputed II: Last Man Standing- The film which essentially kicked off the straight-to-video action boom, this is a basic, no-frills martial arts flick with no pretentious about being anything else. Launched the DTV careers of White and Adkins, has very little to do with the first film, and if you dig this kind of thing, it’s quite a bit of fun. The dramatic moments are almost all out of a screenwriting handbook, but the actors carry them well enough. It’s really all about those fight scenes, and they’re more than impressive enough to carry the show.

Undisputed III: Redemption- More of the same, this time focusing on Adkins’ character and a surprisingly effective arc that’s about just what the title suggests. Still nothing that’ll ever win awards, and very by-the-numbers plot-wise, but the fights offer a wildly fun mix of styles, and Adkins’ presence is exactly the kind of characterization perfect for a genre movie. Lots of fun.

Boyka: Undisputed IV- The latest focus on the now iconic B-movie character loses director Isaac Florentine, and bring in a TV-bred B-filmmaker of the same type. Mostly though, this doesn’t matter, because as usual, it’s all about the fights. Doesn’t quite have the same fun mixture of styles that III did, but fight coordinator Tim Mann, who worked with Adkins on the excellent Ninja: Shadow of a Tear, deliver high-impact fisticuffs that are likely to satisfy genre fans. They certainly did this one.

Post
#1187398
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Last movie seen
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The Darkest Hour- Solid, if a little dry depiction of politics on the UK side during Operation Dynamo during WWII. Phenomenal performance from Gary Oldman, who took home a well-deserved Oscar for his work. The rest of the film is a pretty good, if unspectacular history lesson which will probably find its most natural home in schools. A decent docudrama about a pivotal moment in the war, with great performances and strong production values, but it falls a little short of being as dramatically involving as it wants to be.

Undisputed- Solid little boxing B-movie from underrated director Walter Hill. A film with no aspirations beyond being a genre movie, and that’s perfectly fine. Narrow in function, admittedly, but Hill’s lean, muscular direction and some strong lead performances from Ving Rames and Wesley Snipes make it involving, if not riveting action movie fare. I have to admire and respect a film with no delusions whatsoever about what it is and wants to be.

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#1186582
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Tobar said:

Pacific Rim (2013)

A fun film. Gorgeous visuals and great fight scenes. It gets bogged down a bit by the needlessly convoluted drift concept and the decision to set the film 12 years into the Kaiju war. But the main plot is decent and the character writing is solid. I wonder if del Toro had hoped they could turn the first 12 years into an animated series. It would certainly lend itself to that. In any case, I hope the sequel can live up to the visuals and character moments from the first.

I don’t care what’s wrong with this film. I love the hell out it for existing at all. All the Marvel fans have gotten a two dozen movies. I’m a kaiju fan and got this one. I’m just thrilled that I have it.

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#1186247
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Last movie seen
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SilverWook said:

Mike O said:

darthrush said:

Under the Skin

Masterpiece.

Johnanson’s nude scene is what got all the press, but it’s an interesting, highly unusual film that I sort of observed at arm’s length for its technique and style rather than getting involved in it.

I wanted to like that, but it frustrated me to no end.

Terror Train- Utterly mediocre Halloween knockoff. Does almost nothing interesting with its setting, which some other directors would have a field day with. Not particularly gory by today’s standards, though too well-made to qualify as straight exploitation. John Alcott, Stanley Kubrick’s cinematographer, does conjure up a few interesting images and shadows. Otherwise, not shot with much style, uninteresting characters, doesn’t milk any of its ideas enough, and not outrageous enough to work as exploitation. Sadly, overall, just boring.

Wow. How do you go from lensing The Shining to Terror Train? A job is a job I guess. I’m curious enough to check it out now.

He’s gotta eat, I suppose. It’s watchable as slasher movies go, but nowhere near as stylish as Carpenter’s movie. My old film teacher’s favorite punching bag was Halloween, and I too beat on it for years. but more slasher films that follow in its wake that I watch, the more that I realize that I was rather unfair.

PS- Does anyone here know anything about that Mad Max mono?

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#1185957
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Last movie seen
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darthrush said:

Under the Skin

Masterpiece.

Johnanson’s nude scene is what got all the press, but it’s an interesting, highly unusual film that I sort of observed at arm’s length for its technique and style rather than getting involved in it.

I wanted to like that, but it frustrated me to no end.

Terror Train- Utterly mediocre Halloween knockoff. Does almost nothing interesting with its setting, which some other directors would have a field day with. Not particularly gory by today’s standards, though too well-made to qualify as straight exploitation. John Alcott, Stanley Kubrick’s cinematographer, does conjure up a few interesting images and shadows. Otherwise, not shot with much style, uninteresting characters, doesn’t milk any of its ideas enough, and not outrageous enough to work as exploitation. Sadly, overall, just boring.

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#1185762
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Last movie seen
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moviefreakedmind said:

Everything is a product of its time.

True to an extent, but some things age well and even look prescient.

Olympus Has Fallen- Soul-crushingly dull wannabe action movie with a stiff Gerard Butler performance at its center. Not one of its action sequences has any suspense or excitement, and it assumes no one in the audience has seen Die Hard, Red Dawn, or an episode of 24. Cliched dialogue, depressing crude violence, and a boring derivative plot. A total yawn.

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#1184973
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Mad Max- Having seen the sequels several times (the second is a personal favorite I’ve seen way too many times, and love it), I finally decided to tackle the original. Unfortunately, both MGM and Shout fucked up and their “original mono” tracks are downmixes. Is there ANY way to get the original mono track outside of digging up old Australian pan-and-scan VHS tape? Anyway, all that aside, it’s a fun, super-iconic Ozploitation film, albiet very slow and dated by today’s standards. Director George Miller, one of the greatest action filmmakers of all-time in the sequels, manages to get a lot of mileage out of a minuscule budget (along with Carpenter’s Halloween, I think that it’s one the most successful independent films of the era). I just wish I could watch it with the original fucking audio track.

Dragonslayer- A rarity, a genuine, proper, serious sword and sorcery fantasy flick. The fist film to use ILM outside of the Star Wars universe. The story of a sorcerer’s apprentice attempting to slay a dragon, as the title states, it’s the coolest movie dragon this side of Smaug. Phil Tippet pulled out all the stops and used every bit of special effect technology available at the time to create the might Vermithrax Pejorative, and man, is it cool. The storyline isn’t fantastic; it’s your fairly standard stuff with the wizard’s apprentice, the girl with whom he falls in love, the town offering sacrifices, etc. The performances are solid, particularly a scene-stealing Ralph Richardson. But it’s the marvelously medieval setting and grim mood that really help the film to stand apart from most knockoff fantasy features, then and now. And that dragon? Wow.

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#1183964
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Last movie seen
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Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning- Not just “better than it should be for direct-to-video” but genuinely damn good. Though it wears the skin of a DTV action picture and boasts some awesome fight scenes courtesy of fight coordinator Larnell Stovall, it’s more like a twisted art-house horror film. Full of Gaspar Noe-esque first-person sequences and flashing strobe lights and Lynchian plot that questions memory, identity, and politics. Yeah, I know, it sounds crazy. But believe me, it’s facinating stuff.

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#1183519
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suspiciouscoffee said:

I haven’t seen the reboot, but I have no strong feelings on it or II.

I don’t see why II is hated if it is. It’s a pale shadow of the original, but a fun enough special effects comedy by itself.

Universal Soldier- Future blockbuster helmer Roland Emmerich’s first Hollywood feature, a 90s Jean-Claude Van Damme vehicle. A tolerable mid-budget Terminator knock-off about re-animated soldiers. Emmerich has yet to master the more-is-more aesthetic he’d later wield in films like Independence Day; by today’s standards, the pacing is slow and most of the action sequences are dated and lack much bite. Dolph Lundgren has fun as the psychopathic villain, but the requisite car chases, stunts, and fights are primitive by modern standards. Still, Emmerich is already developing his mixture of action and comedy, and it’s mildly interesting genre fare.

Universal Soldier: Regeneration- Straight to DVD (though shot in scope), director John Hyams, son of veteran journeyman director Peter Hyams, here the director of digital photography, makes this DTV fare way, way, better than it has any right to be. Eschewing Emmerich’s blockbuster silliness to play by his own rules, Hyams and Hyams shoot in Bulgaria like most Nu Image productions, but the grimy industrial parts of the city they choose-with the look of burnt out train tracks and abandoned chemical plants-have a bleak beauty. Having filmed documentaries about MMA fighters, Hyams casts them in the lead roles, and his fights and action sequences, in contrast to Emmerich’s slapstick, are quick, lean, and brutally violent. JCVD returns as a damaged shell of his former self, as does an unnerving Lundgren. Mix in some Bourne-esque car chases and shootouts, and you’re left with a brutal, utterly relentless straight-to-DVD sequel that’s better than it needs to be or has any right to be.

Post
#1181828
Topic
Last comic read
Time

Green Arrow: Year One- Diggle’s writing is solid, and the influence it had on the television show is pretty clear, but the real treat for me was Jock’s art: jagged edges, hard faces. This is my first taste of him outside of his film design work and I have to say, I really dig him. Sparse, raw, impressionistic, some his drawings look almost incomplete. It’s an odd, minimalist sort of beauty. Diggle’s writing is solid too, and gives a nice psychological edge to the character’s backstory, though full disclosure, this is the first Green Arrow comic I’m familiar with.

Edit: I didn’t realize I’d posted this already. Mods, feel free to delete.

Post
#1180605
Topic
4K restoration on Star Wars
Time

lurker77 said:

Very surprised to see this much praise of Lucas’s use of digital cameras and CGI.

They (digital motion picture technologies) are useful tools, but not all-purpose ones. The way Lucas used them, and the way Hollywood has generally used them since they became widespread, are as crutches. Because storage space is cheap, settings can be changed quicker, the final result can be previewed in real time, and digital editing has so many more bells and whistles, there is less motivation to put effort into getting a good shot. This applies moreso to effects, as the digital world does not have the limitations of the physical world, allowing thought out and naturalistic shots to be replaced by hyperactive, sensory overloading flash and impossible scale. Early CGI like Jurassic Park and Terminator 2 looked better because effort was taken to get it to fit in with live action footage by not shoving it in your face and often augmenting it with practical effects. Now it’s the other way around, with the live action being an afterthought.

As for digital cameras, they’re best used in situations that demand a small, lightweight, or remote camera.

Sounds good on paper, but money is king. If Kodak survives much longer, I’ll be very surprised.

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#1178649
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darthrush said:

DominicCobb said:

darthrush said:

Nice to see you enjoyed it. I also find it very nice. One of the plot threads felt a little cliche but the core of the movie was about her relationship with her mother which was very interesting and touching. Overall, it’s a very genuine film with great acting and though it’s not my favorite of the year, I’d be fine with it taking home Best Picture. I just can’t accept Shape of Water winning.

Why though

I mean of course, whatever wins will win, I just find Shape of Water overrated. Not nearly as much as Darkest Hour which has no place in the nominations whatsoever in my opinion. I find CMBYN or Three Billboards deserving of the award. If they nominated BR 2049 then I’d give it to that in a heartbeat.

As a major-league del Toro fanboy, I liked Shape of Water, though I didn’t find it his best work. But I’d love to see him take home the gold, especially as a genre filmmaker. Darkest Hour was OK, but I think Oldman will take home Best Actor.

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#1178327
Topic
The films of Sergio Leone- The best available versions
Time

So how does the new Kino compare to the MGM mess? I’m hoping Kino’s new remasters of the rest of the trilogy and DYS are good enough that I can chuck my German and Italian releases and my old Anthology boxed set and finally save some space!

I guess outside of a fan restoration, we’re never getting OUATIW with lossless mono.

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#1176450
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paja said:

MOON (2009) – Thumbs up!
No words Fantastic!

ALIEN - (1979) - Thumbs up!

The First Half is terrific and Fantastic! No Problems.

The Second Half is Basically looking around. SPOOKY ALIEN! Looking around… SPOOKY ALIEN! And that’s the rest of the film pretty much.

I love Alien, but for all of its sophisticated production design and lavish budget, it’s essentially just a haunted house movie in space, albeit a really, really good one.