what's the last movie you saw?

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Sonic# » Thu Mar 16, 12:45 2017

I saw Hercules on mute while I was bowling. Highly recommended, at least in this format. One of my teammates made us pay attention to all the bits where Hercules (played by Dwayne Johnson) used his bulging muscles to flip horses, pull himself free of pillars to beat his enemies with the chains, and so on.

Eravial wrote:In addition to disagreeing, I'm also just confused by what you said about taking the ending literally, since I don't think any horror films are supposed to be taken literally.


Just want to say I also found this puzzling. If the issue is plausibility (like, could it actually happen), I don't think I watch horror films for that element.

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Unvoiced_Apollo » Thu Mar 16, 20:13 2017

Eravial wrote:
Unvoiced_Apollo wrote:Get Out - It's a satire of the black experience in the form of the suspense/thriller genre. Anyone with an ounce of wit wouldn't take the ending literally and understand it's more like mocking appropriation of black culture by white people. :3houses:.5

It's still pretty good, just doesnt feel like a 4 or 5 movie.

I have to wholeheartedly disagree. This was also the last film I saw, and I thought it was FANTASTIC, easily :5houses:. It's also far more complex than you've made it sound. It intelligently tackles problems with white liberalism, from appropriation and tokenism to the dehumanization/objectification of black people. It's a huge metaphor for the insidiousness of racism in a culture that thinks itself post-racial. It shows (in a way that white people can actually start to understand) why many black people don't feel like they can trust white people, or large groups of white people, even if they are liberal. The friend I saw it with and I talked about it for a while after leaving the theater, and we were still making connections between different elements of the film an hour later. It was just super well done. I recommend you read some black people's takes on the film. This one was good. This podcast was great.

That's why it's a 3 out of 5. Because the political statement and satire is excellent but I didn't feel the thriller aspect was on par with the rest of it. And that to me brings it down when it's supposed to be both horror and satire.

My mention of people taking the ending literally is a reference to the user reviews on rotten tomatoes who clearly don't understand the symbolic meaning of the ending,
thinking it's only about evil white people wanting to be black
. It's such a simplistic interpretation that they have to be taking it literally.


After some reassessing, I'm uping it to :4houses:, the missing one represantative of the thriller aspects not being quite up to par with everything else.

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Unvoiced_Apollo » Sat Mar 18, 18:29 2017

Beauty & The Beast (2017) - The acting and singing are serviceable, but that's about it. The movie is an almost beat for beat remake of the original. Very few changes are made, and out of the ones that are, most of them aren't explored enough or they don't make sense. Also, the original did a much better job at developing the romance and in a shorter time. I didn't buy the budding romance in this one because it misses a key element from the original. The new songs are alright, but I did like the new song for Maurice. LeFou and Gaston were fun, but that has more chemistry than the two leads. So a prettily dressed remake with too many undeniable flaws. :2houses:

Spoilers:
Good Changes
Provided a little more depth to Maurice.
Gay LeFou

Providing more development about what happened to Belle's Mom: she died of the plague.

Bad changes:
In the original, Beast is coached by Lumiere to provide Belle better accomadations. In the trip to her room, he tells her she has free roam of the castle except the west wing. She also promises not to leave. Right here, they have an uncomfortable interaction but Lumiere helps Beast tap into his humanity, even though he still needs to dig even deeper later on. This establishes Belle being able to see more in him when he rescues her. She gets to reflect on that sliver of humanity she experienced and realize that there must be more to him if he's willing to risk his life. This is where the romance begins to develop when he makes a conscious effort to change for the better and she becomes more open to his less refined but non-abusive) ways.

In this new version, Lumiere releases her so there is no direct contact between her and the Beast in a way that shows some humanity between the time she is imprisoned and the time she is rescued. Not only this, she makes no promise to stay so there's absolutely nothing keeping her there, not even her word. In fact she even begins an attempt to escape but is interrupted by Mrs. Potts and she never tries again until the Beast scares her. There's nothing built into her decision to go back beyond his rescue. By decreasing her interaction, they remove any depth from her decision to return which in turn decreased any chemistry they would build.

And speaking of the scene in which Beast scares Belle from the West Wing and castle, Belle actually interacts with the bell bar and nearly comes into contact with the wioting rose. The rose being tied to the curse, this justified Beasts anger, which hides his fear of the petals falling. In the new version, she doesn't get within 40 ft of the damn thing before Beast scares her off.

They have a throw away line about the servants standing by while the son was molded into the terrible beast you saw This provides an explanation as to why the servants were cursed too, but it's never actually explored. This would have been a great change from the original. They could have really delved into the Beast's background and they didn't.

These issues really stand out when I think about them and just makes me realize how near perfect the original was.

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Sonic# » Mon Mar 20, 9:52 2017

We saw Hidden Figures over the weekend. :5houses:

I really like the early history of NASA. Going to the National Air and Space Museum in Washington and the US Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, AL were like religious experiences for me; merely being in the presence of an Apollo capsule or a Saturn V rocket section makes me ecstatic. In my enthusiastic reading, as both a kid and an adult, I've perused the histories, schematics, math problems, and accounts of early rocketry and space flight. I really like the film Apollo 13.

Hidden Figures combines that interest and wonder with the figures often hidden in those histories and accounts: Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson. The aeronautical is also the personal - the film manages to focus simultaneously on the immediate effects of segregation on these women, the mission everyone had to put a man in space, and their personal lives. (For me, a scene where Dorothy Vaughan goes with her son to the library sticks out in particular.
She's looking for a book on FORTRAN so she can learn how to maintain the new IBM at Langley. A librarian approaches her for being in the white section of the library, and after a tense exchange the scene cuts to she and her son being led out the door by an officer. She yells at him to let go of her son; the tension between protecting her child and not overstepping the place she's been put in and being arrested is palpable. Then another cut - they're sitting in the back of a segregated bus. Dorothy is lecturing her son about what's fair and what's right, and she pulls the library book out of her coat. Her son asks about it. Dorothy quips back that it's her right: she paid the taxes that paid for every book, so it's hers. I don't have the words to describe Octavia Spencer's acting throughout the scene; it's pitch-perfect.
) All this is to say I really like it. I came in for the NASA history and interest in learning more about segregation, and came away entertained, awed, and wanting to learn more. I want to teach this film as soon as possible, and I've already got plans to read the nonfiction book the film is based on.

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Tweek » Mon Mar 20, 10:52 2017

I watched the Thai film Ong Bak: The Beginning*. Not the deepest of plots but lots of great martial arts action :) :4houses:

*Click link to read my full review on the IMDb.
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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Storage and Disposal » Fri May 12, 21:03 2017

I finally got around to seeing Ghostbusters. I went in with fairly low expectations, but quickly became pleasantly surprised. All the leads had great chemistry, everyone was funny, I was thoroughly enjoying myself. None of the complaints I've heard about it are valid, in my opinion.

But then I noticed a weird cut that confused me. One scene ended abruptly and the next one started abruptly, like they forgot to come up with a transition. Then I noticed it happen again. Then again. Then one of the cameos occurred in the same sense. The awkward editing became just too distracting to me. At some point in the movie, I started noticing some jokes falling flat for me, too. It started out with so much promise, I was really disappointed when the finale hit and I just wasn't that invested anymore. It somehow went from great to all right by the end.

:3houses:

And I didn't really care for the music. I was still fairly entertained throughout the movie, but I probably won't be buying this one.
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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Sonic# » Mon May 15, 13:05 2017

I saw Guardians of the Galaxy 2. I enjoyed it a lot. 3.5/:5houses:

Spoilers:
Maybe I've read about enough utopian worlds that I usually begin looking for the skulls under the surface, or maybe I've seen enough films involving demi-gods that I can predict the moment they'll shift from "we/life" to "I/no one else," or maybe I saw that Kurt-Russel-lookalike Jeff Bridges movie where his alter-ego was a tyrant seeking to choke out all life not like him, but it was easy to foresee the plot points a mile away. Yep, skulls under the surface. Yep, he wants to kill all life for being imperfect. Yep, Ego just went "god" from Star Trek V. The delight was in the reactions of characters, the momentary spectacles, the humor, and especially in Yondu's love and sacrifice for Starlord. I'll give it a lot for those things, but it didn't take any risks with my expectations, so I felt like I'd seen this film before.

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby rowan » Mon May 15, 13:26 2017

I liked it, :4houses: / :5houses:
Totally agree on the plot but I super enjoyed the emotional aspects of the film (except for that one eye-rolly bit at the end) but seriously I totally want more with my superhero movies being people
spacefem wrote:All your logical argue are belong to us!

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Sonic# » Tue May 16, 21:36 2017

^ Agreed!

I saw King Arthur.

I liked it as this medievalist metal action flick, brooding and serious to the point of near-absurdity at points, willing to crack some humor at other points.

So, as an action flick it's rather light on the explanations, and at times a bit muddled. The action begins with a besieged castle and lots of action. Names fly; some of them stick. To the credit of the filmmakers, it felt legendary. As director, Guy Ritchie likes having characters describe what's going to happen over montages of it happening, something that keeps the film quick-paced but has led me later to wonder whether a couple of scenes actually happened. (And not in an awesome, subjective, postmodern way.) He, perhaps, could have done The Hobbit in 2.5 hours, making it similarly enjoyable but somewhat fuzzy in parts. The action is fun; good fights, yeah. The acting is pretty good too, both in the central and supporting cast.

The film is heavy on machismo. Arthur becomes a man who learns how to protect the brothel workers who helped raise him. He surrounds himself with men who know how to talk fast, crack a joke, and put on a stiff upper lip under tremendous pressure. Moms die and are absent; dads die and sons witness their deaths, perhaps repeatedly. Phallic symbols fly. Spoiler:
Arthur needs to repeatedly relive and face the death of his father in order to master Excalibur (his phallic symbol) and overcome the serpentine, phallus-tower-constructing Vortigern. His mom also dies in these cutscenes, but she doesn't fight, and Arthur never engages her in these flashbacks. In the middle of the movie, a boy named Blue witnesses his father interrogated and killed by Vortigern; the death triggers an immediate reaction in Blue, and a more gradual determination in Arthur.
Men do a variety of things, many of them centered on fighting, drinking, or acting politically. Women are subsumed into various supportive roles: they advise and encourage (Lady of the Lake); they support with magic (Mage); they die while fulfilling little other plot function (most of the other named women).

I've read some reviews that lament the lack of a focused Arthurian narrative here. In one way, they're right - this isn't the classic Arthur of Sword in the Stone or Le Morte Darthur, as seen in Excalibur. However, its subsuming of women, its focus on the phallic masculinity of men, and its interest in some scant political ethos being developed in Arthur seems Arthurian in a medievalist, anachronistic sense: it's some of the worst parts of the Arthurian mythos mixed with some of the most potent, readapted into a form that doesn't care it mixes four temporalities in vast, anachronistic fashion (~500 CE Londinium + 1400 CE arms and armor + 1100 CE allusions to Crusader narratives + some of the politics of today).

I really want to like it. Arthur is directly in my field of study. I read and appreciate Arthurian texts with substantial flaws that I don't overlook but I manage to deal with. Similarly, here, I enjoyed it (anachronisms and all) and could talk about it all day, and by that measure it succeeded. Still, I'm exasperated by its core conservatism, especially regarding gender. I feel like they used their own vision of what "medieval" is to justify putting men front and center and putting four women in (not literal) refrigerators. "THIS IS MEDIEVAL!" it screams with every set, every gesture, every retrograde gender assumption. "You can do better," I reply, and I'm not referring to the prop anachronisms.

:3houses:

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Re: what's the last movie you saw?

Postby Tweek » Wed May 24, 4:50 2017

Last night I watched Moonraker; I bought the DVD yesterday afternoon shortly before I heard that Sir Roger Moore had died :(
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