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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:34 am 
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Aaltra One of the oddest road trip films I've ever seen, with dead pan black humor. Twin brothers, one more obnoxious than the other when physically whole, become unbearable once they're paralyzed from the waist down.
Neil_Leach wrote:
"Aaltra"_3/4_Gustave de Kervern & Benoît Delépine_2004_Belgium
exquisitely dry. funny. widescreen B&W. dry. did i mention that it was dry?
the Belgians seem to like their humor dry. dry and funny and dry.


Elle After seeing this film one wonders why it took so long for Paul Verhoeven and Isabelle Huppert to work together. Perhaps people were afraid that they'd achieve some sort of critical mass. If so, they were right to be afraid.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2017 2:16 pm 
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the evil dead
Mercilessly cheesy and ruthlessly inept. File next to "Manos : The Hands of Fate". Bruce Campbell before his voice changed and the unibrow surgery is kinda cute. Majestically sexist.

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... the story of a bull elephant on its way to the elephant’s graveyard, only to find it full of ambulances. ~ Steve Aylett


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 10:37 am 
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La Collectionneuse A battle of the sexes as to who has the moral high ground. Eric Rohmer's "Moral Tales" are generally talky and this one seems even more so, but that shouldn't bother anyone who likes Rohmer. The woman's ability to thwart the two men's attempts to impose their will on her "for her own good" is pretty amusing.

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The key to entertainment is always talent, it is what the director inspires the talent to do that pushes the crew.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:02 am 
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AVIDA
Benoit Delepine, Gustave Kervern - France - 2006 - 83 min.
Delepine and Kervern, the team who brought you AALTRA, are up to their abstruse hijinks again. True to form, this production is comedic in the theater of the absurd sense, and remarkably dry. Deborah Young of VARIETY calls AVIDA "Somewhere between Monty Python, Jacques Tati and a slideshow of New Yorker cartoons ...", which is accurate enough. My guess is that the name "Avida" is in reference to André Breton's 1939 derogatory anagram "Avida Dollars", made from Salvador Dalí's name and referencing Dalí's apparently pedestrian motivations; which might give you an idea of the rarefied nature of this narrative. Shot in high contrast black and white, the imagery is evocative. Visual motifs from AALTRA pop up from time to time as if to reinforce their "point". Foremost seems to be the recurring image of the two benighted principals laboring up a hill. Waiting for Sisyphus? Who cares? AVIDA reminds me of nothing more than Alfred Jarry's 1896 play UBU ROI. In other words, you REALLY have to be in the mood to tolerate this stuff. Those with animal sensitivities may not care for several close ups of a mad taxidermist preparing a carcass. Salvador Dalí's 1942 painting "Las llamas, llaman (The Flames, They Call)" features toward the end of the film and probably offers better insight into this movie than any trailer could. In practical terms, the sobriquet "experimental cinema" often implies that a "take it or leave it" attitude may be appropriate. So said.

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... the story of a bull elephant on its way to the elephant’s graveyard, only to find it full of ambulances. ~ Steve Aylett


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 1:55 pm 
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Ashura A retired demon slayer climbs back into the saddle when he learns of a demon-led apocalypse on the horizon (I think). Japanese film shot in English and then with English ADR (to remove any accents?). Lots of special effects, all of which look as though they were done on somebody's laptop. Some material is interesting (the Kabuki playwright, for example), but most of the rest just fall flat. Directed by Yojiro Takita.

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The key to entertainment is always talent, it is what the director inspires the talent to do that pushes the crew.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 7:47 am 
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maxfrost wrote:
Ashura A retired demon slayer climbs back into the saddle when he learns of a demon-led apocalypse on the horizon (I think). Japanese film shot in English and then with English ADR (to remove any accents?). Lots of special effects, all of which look as though they were done on somebody's laptop. Some material is interesting (the Kabuki playwright, for example), but most of the rest just fall flat. Directed by Yojiro Takita.

Well to the point as always. I enjoyed ASHURA in a left handed sort of way as each scene had me wondering what sort of bizarre and/or semi-legitimate cinematic trope Mr. Takita might pull out of his hat next. I do not recall being impressed, neither do I recall being bored. Sorta like good anime provided you do not, like myself, believe that the phrase is an oxymoron.


BOGOWIE | GODS
Lukasz Palkowski - Poland - 2014 - 120 min.
This movie is a recounting of events leading up to and including the first several successful heart transplantation surgeries performed in Poland. The historic meat of the story could hardly be more complex or dramatic. BOGOWIE is an ambitious project focusing on the achievements of a singularly ambitious man, Professor/Doctor Jako Zbigniew Religa played by Tomasz Kot. The period presented is circa 1985, a period in which every dynamic within Polish society was in a feverish flux searching for stability. Director Palkowski focuses all of the production on the character of Prof. Religa. Kot turns in a performance which is statuesque. Period detailing was well considered and accurate to the limits of my knowledge. The dialog was generally crisp and avoided egregiously expository digressions. Cast was excellent, including the wonderful Zbigniew Zamachowski, possibly the most well know Polish actor in the west and a man of tremendous range. My one teeny, tiny quibble was the "cute" score which seemed gratuitous at best and annoying at worst; but then I might well be described as obsessive about scores. I enjoy MY SHARONA as much as the next music nerd, but really? I love the shabby gigantism of Eastern European period architecture and industrial design. Weird little cars. Highly recommended.
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... the story of a bull elephant on its way to the elephant’s graveyard, only to find it full of ambulances. ~ Steve Aylett


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:20 pm 
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Little Caesar Iconic gangster film and one of the three gangster films that wise guys went to see to learn how to dress, talk, and behave like gangsters (the other two being Roaring Twenties and Scarface). Edward G. Robinson as Caesar Enrico Bandello, a small-time hood who makes it to the top of the underworld, only to end up in the gutter. "Mother of mercy. Is this the end of Rico?" Robinson's fun to watch, see, and even more fun to listen to, see. Now, go on, get outa here before I change my mind. With Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. Directed by Mervyn LeRoy.

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The key to entertainment is always talent, it is what the director inspires the talent to do that pushes the crew.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 7:05 am 
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COLLATERAL
Michael Mann - Hollywood - 2004 - 120 min.
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I have been wanting to see this one again for a minute. The story and script¹ do not approach HEAT dimensions, but the cast is very good and the look sizzles. Cinematography was handled by Aussie lens man Dion Beebe(HOLY SMOKE² / IN THE CUT² / GANGSTER SQUAD / EDGE OF TOMORROW) and Paul Cameron(GONE IN SIXTY SECONDS / MAN ON FIRE³ / DEJA VU³ / WESTWORLD various episodes). This is one handsome photoplay. Signature Mann angles, pans, and frames are everywhere. You can let the dialog run as subliminal content and just absorb the look. Want to see how a pro shoots automobile interiors? Step right up. Lighting is insane : perfection on ice. Jim Miller(MEN IN BLACK / THE ADDAMS FAMILY) and Paul Rubell(TRANSFORMERS / THOR) handle the cut and splice. James Newton Howard score is professional, but unexceptional; which is a lot better than unprofessional and exceptionally incongruous. Francine Maisler herds the cats and provides the project with : Tom Cruise / Jamie Foxx / Jada Pinkett Smith / Mark Ruffalo / Peter Berg / Jason Statham(in a 10 second walk through) / Bruce McGill / Barry Shabaka Henley / and Javier Bardem. Production design by David Wasco(PULP FICTION / INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS / RESERVOIR DOGS / KILL BILL : VOL. 1). Art direction by Daniel T. Dorrance(SAVING PRIVATE RYAN / BRAVEHEART / SERENITY). Like I said, this is one handsome photoplay. Hit up your friend with the huge screen.

¹with the exception of a nice convo between Cruise and Henley about Miles Davis
²Jane Campion
³Tony Scott

Extra special ear tidbits include : band in a jazz club syncing to Mile Davis' SPANISH KEY - single edit / dance club DJ dropping Oakenfold's READY SET GO - "Korean" style / Johann Sebastian Bach's AIR ON A G STRING coming over the cab radio as lounge piano / Groove Armada - HANDS OF TIME / musical interlude(it is Michael Mann after all) - Audioslave - SHADOW OF THE SUN / OST playlist

Don't neglect the original 17:34 minute BITCH'S BREW version of SPANISH KEY

86% at https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/collateral/
Desson Thompson's Washington Post review
IMDb 81 image photo gallery

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... the story of a bull elephant on its way to the elephant’s graveyard, only to find it full of ambulances. ~ Steve Aylett


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:49 am 
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Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle The humor holds up, for the most part, although if you've seen it before you might find that the surprise element has faded, taking some of the laughs with it. The gross comedy parts (and, yes, I'm talking about "battleshits" here) are just as difficult to watch as they ever were. With John Cho, Kal Pen, and Neil Patrick Harris. Directed by Danny Liener.

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circuitsnake wrote:
The key to entertainment is always talent, it is what the director inspires the talent to do that pushes the crew.


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