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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2017 9:42 am 
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Ghost in the Shell: Exactly what I expected, though I was holding out hope that it would be better. Nails the world design and cinematography, ripping & building upon the best parts of the anime... But the story is just such well-worn "perfect weapon" origin territory without any of the philosophical or emotional complexity if the source material. The action bits are staged & shot competently but are brief & unmemorable. No character gets fleshed out at all. Scarlett puts as much heart and depth as she can into what she's given, but I wish she was given more than Act I. This was clearly meant to be the first stage of a now non-existent new franchise - because since they didn't take any risks, only grasped what made the original great on the surface, and led off with the whitewashed casting, there will never be a sequel.

In conclusion, please tell Hollywood to stop letting focus groups, market research, & rich old CEOs dictate project development. Instead, I humbly offer a wild alternative. Hello.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2017 10:11 am 
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In Order of Disappearance When an Upstanding Citizen's son is murdered and the police will do nothing about it, the father takes matters in his own hands and seeks revenge on the killer(s). Nothing we haven't seen before, but this time with Stellan Skarsgard as the father, a snowplow operator in rural Norway, and that makes all the difference. I'm going to watch this one again. Bonus attraction: The remarkable Bruno Ganz as a Serbian crime boss. Directed by Hans Petter Moland.

tsukasa13 wrote:
In conclusion, please tell Hollywood to stop letting focus groups, market research, & rich old CEOs dictate project development. Instead, I humbly offer a wild alternative. Hello.

But, Marc, if you don't tell people what they like, how will they know what to watch?

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2017 8:47 pm 
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Breaking Away: I feel like I'm writing the intro to a high school cinema studies paper by using these terms, but the music, cinematography, and atmosphere are all perfect here. The acting is excellent and the story is about as good as it can be for the type of story it is. This is almost a perfect film. In fact, it might be.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 12:52 am 
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Day Glo wrote:
Neil_Leach wrote:
Day Glo wrote:
Politically speaking, yeah, this film should not star white actors.

Dear David,
Could you expand on this, please? I know nothing about the interpretational dimensions of anime.
Thanks
8)

Generally, it's rooted in the cultural specifics of the [alleged] story and themes of Ghost in the Shell which were discussed at length in an excellent piece by Emily Yoshida, which is here; and coupled with the insistence on telling a story from that cultural background, retaining the original setting, location, characters, but replacing the leads with white actors, contributing to the dreadful dearth of leading roles for actors of Asian heritage in Hollywood.

Thank you, Sir.

maxfrost wrote:
tsukasa13 wrote:
In conclusion, please tell Hollywood to stop letting focus groups, market research, & rich old CEOs dictate project development. Instead, I humbly offer a wild alternative. Hello.

But, Marc, if you don't tell people what they like, how will they know what to watch?

Didn't Mr. Watterson's Calvin say something similar but cuter?


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 8:50 am 
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Neil_Leach wrote:
Day Glo wrote:
Neil_Leach wrote:
Dear David,
Could you expand on this, please? I know nothing about the interpretational dimensions of anime.
Thanks
8)

Generally, it's rooted in the cultural specifics of the [alleged] story and themes of Ghost in the Shell which were discussed at length in an excellent piece by Emily Yoshida, which is here; and coupled with the insistence on telling a story from that cultural background, retaining the original setting, location, characters, but replacing the leads with white actors, contributing to the dreadful dearth of leading roles for actors of Asian heritage in Hollywood.

Thank you, Sir.

maxfrost wrote:
tsukasa13 wrote:
In conclusion, please tell Hollywood to stop letting focus groups, market research, & rich old CEOs dictate project development. Instead, I humbly offer a wild alternative. Hello.

But, Marc, if you don't tell people what they like, how will they know what to watch?

Didn't Mr. Watterson's Calvin say something similar but cuter?

That's probably where I got it from and, of course, I'm not as cute as Calvin.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 10:23 am 
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Power Rangers: Uhh. Way better than a cash-in reboot of a cheesy 90s children property deserves to be? Loads of genuine heart and emotional honesty through fleshed out, diverse characters - and more than a few solid laughs. It doesn't shy away from wanting to be "Breakfast Club but they're becoming superheros" which is fine because, for my money, they nail it. The climax rhythmically builds on itself and is satisfyingly huge, which makes up for a lack of action set pieces earlier on. Elizabeth Banks goes full gross villain and doesn't hold back, so that's a joy to watch.

It's one of those movies where it seems like everyone was genuinely having a blast making it, and that fun translates to screen. Didn't expect to like it half this much, or for it to be about 9000x more relevant than Ghost in the Shell, but here we are...

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Last edited by tsukasa13 on Fri Apr 07, 2017 4:42 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 11:21 am 
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Veronika Voss Once the brightest star in the UFA firmament, but now, ten years after the end of the war, just another morphine addict, Veronika Voss is largely forgotten, or at least unrecognized. Fassbender's critique of those who, no matter under what form of government, would strive to make a profit from someone else's suffering. Rosel Zech really is wonderful as the Third Reich pin-up girl as is Hilmar Thate as the sportswriter who tries to rescue her. Also, Armin Mueller-Stahl as a screenwriter and Voss's ex-husband.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 3:35 pm 
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tsukasa13 wrote:
Power Rangers: Uhh. Way better than a cash-in reboot of a cheesy 90s children property deserves to be? Loads of genuine heart and emotional honesty through fleshed out, diverse characters - and more than a few solid laughs. It doesn't shy away from wanting to be "Breakfast Club but they're becoming superheros" which is fine because, for my money, they nail it. The climax is builds on itself and is satisfyingly huge, which makes up for a lack of action set pieces earlier on. Elizabeth Banks goes full gross villain and doesn't hold back, so that's a joy to watch. It's one of those movies where it seems like everyone was genuinely having a blast making it, and that fun translates to screen. Didn't expect to like it half this much, or for it to be about 9000x more relevant than Ghost in the Shell, but here we are.

This is the second review on these lines that I've seen this week. That seals it. I'm seeing it asap.


Win It All: I'd never realised before now how stressful I find stories about money in general and gambling in particular, but gosh. This made me anxious. Eddie (Jake Johnson) is a good guy with an addiction, who tries to fix his life but struggles to get ahead of his problem. Also with Joe Lo Truglio, Keegan-Michael Key and Aislinn Derbez. A really good, focussed character piece. Written & directed by Joe Swanberg.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 3:53 pm 
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maxfrost wrote:
Veronika Voss

Good to hear that somebody could watch it. Oops, left my withering sarcasm on the floor.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 4:43 pm 
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Day Glo wrote:
This is the second review on these lines that I've seen this week. That seals it. I'm seeing it asap.

Win It All: I'd never realised before now how stressful I find stories about money in general and gambling in particular, but gosh. This made me anxious. Eddie (Jake Johnson) is a good guy with an addiction, who tries to fix his life but struggles to get ahead of his problem. Also with Joe Lo Truglio, Keegan-Michael Key and Aislinn Derbez. A really good, focussed character piece. Written & directed by Joe Swanberg.

Sounds like a good trade - I'll see Win It All tomorrow! :wink:

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2017 5:00 am 
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Paterson is a masterpiece

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2017 9:32 am 
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Day Glo wrote:

Win It All: I'd never realised before now how stressful I find stories about money in general and gambling in particular, but gosh. This made me anxious. Eddie (Jake Johnson) is a good guy with an addiction, who tries to fix his life but struggles to get ahead of his problem. Also with Joe Lo Truglio, Keegan-Michael Key and Aislinn Derbez. A really good, focussed character piece. Written & directed by Joe Swanberg.


This is the first Swanberg thing that I really enjoyed. Thanks, in no small part, to Johnson (who apparently co-wrote).


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:14 am 
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Train to Busan "I have had it with these motherfuckin' zombies on this motherfuckin' train!" I actually preferred this to either 28 Days Later or 28 Weeks Later, probably because it doesn't take itself quite as seriously as either of those two films.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:30 am 
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maxfrost wrote:
Train to Busan "I have had it with these motherfuckin' zombies on this motherfuckin' train!" I actually preferred this to either 28 Days Later or 28 Weeks Later, probably because it doesn't take itself quite as seriously as either of those two films.


Plus the ending is perfect. Loved this one.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:50 am 
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Watched a few this weekend. Where to start...

Guilt Is My Shadow: A young criminal makes his escape from London to a farm owned by his uncle. Decent displacement of noir from the shadows of American cities to the bright daylight of rural Britain. If you're interested, I'd advise not looking it up beforehand; a few sites include a major spoiler in the plot synopsis, and it's visible just by googling the title.

The Assassin: Chinese period film. Found it a bit hard to follow. I know I need to watch this again, I was exhausted. Slow. Stunningly beautiful. Mostly shot in Academy ratio, but flits between colour, black & white, high-contrast colour widescreen, etc. Written & directed by Hou Hsiao-Hsien.

Eden: A DJ's life from the 90s to modern day in the French dance music scene. Among the mostly French cast, Greta Gerwig appears, as does Brady Corbet in a walk-on role. Enjoyed it a lot, especially the running joke of nobody recognising Daft Punk. Co-written & directed by Mia Hansen-Løve.

Five Nights In Maine: A grieving man (David Oyelowo) visits his recently-deceased wife's mother (Ellen Barkin). Oyelowo is very good, Barkin is not. The material is not really worth the time of either actor or the audience.


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