Rian's Forum

A place to discuss Rian's stuff, and stuff that isn't Rian's stuff. Hello!
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:51 pm 
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Rian, you linked to Jim Emerson's biography on your blog.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 09, 2008 10:43 pm 
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Yellow Calx wrote:
Rian, you linked to Jim Emerson's biography on your blog.


Thanks, fixed.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 9:07 pm 
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To be fair, it was a pretty interesting biography.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 3:42 pm 
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Hi Rian, hope you are still reading this thread. Wanted to weigh in on your reaction to my review over at Twitch. First off, I loved BRICK, and after covering the film for quite some time before released my expectations were thru the roof and somehow EXCEEDED. Nice.

**Potential mild spoiler for forum readers** Bloom went south for me when the story tried to get weighty and dramatic when the fun set-up couldn't support the weight (so to speak). It's tough to have it both ways (Wes Anderson & David Mamet) and the balance wasn't quite there. And Joseph Gordon Levitt seemed to mine the teen angst in Brick in relation to what the picture was trying to do better than Adrian Brody managed to project mid-thirties-malaise in the context of Bloom.

I'm also curious why The Brothers Bloom was originally titled Penelope. I know that in her own charismatic way, Ms. Weisz is the heart and soul of the film, but at the same time, that title seems doesn't seem to fit (and I guessing it was changed due to the Christina Ricci fable). The Brothers Bloom is definitely the better title.

**potential minuscule spoiler for forum readers** I would like to note that amputee kittens in film are always a good thing, as I did really like the opening grift in the film. The highlight of the picture.

Question: Did you (Rian) enjoy the Argentinian grifter flick "NINE QUEENS"?

---

FYI: I'm happy that you are a fan of Twitch, because a number of us are big fans of your work. Oh, and if you ever wish to have a chat regarding LOOPER, BLOOM and BRICK, I'd really love to. (kurt@twitchfilm.net)

---

Twitch Coverage of Rian: (http://twitchfilm.net/site/search/results/ff74853e512c9888ade847e8d06751f9/)

Twitch Coverage of Brick (http://twitchfilm.net/site/search/results/183b41def3592ec8a3b9555e1f447cd3/)

My previous Review of BRICK: http://kurtscomment.blogspot.com/2006/08/kbt-presents-brick.html

p.s. to one other commenter in this forum: Personally, I generally like Quirk(tm) and loved the Life Aquatic & the pirate attack scene.

p.p.s. not to sound surly, but on Jeffrey Wells - I sat beside him in one of the TIFF press screenings (Before the Devil Knows You're Dead) and he did some of the rudest personal hygiene things in the screening. (Who takes their shoes off and puts their feet up in a Theater? Who cleans their ear with a pen (or car key, it was dark) in a screening? Weird and distracting. Strange fellow, or I caught him on the wrong day.


Last edited by Triflic on Tue Sep 16, 2008 5:47 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:15 pm 
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Hey Triflic, welcome to the forum! The reason I white-ified your review up there is that I suspect it may have some spoilers in it. Having not seen the film yet (grumble grumble) I couldn't read it closely, so if I am wrong, feel free to re-edit your post and take out the color tags.
However, if my guess was right, please do us all a solid and copy your post, delete it, and then repost it in the "questions rants and raves" forum. That section is for people who have seen the film, so "spoilers" are ok.

Thanks, and welcome again!

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:29 pm 
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No spoilers (well I talk about one visual gag in the film, which I'll keep white, and remove the rest of the white text.)


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:43 pm 
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Triflic wrote:
Bloom went south for me when the story tried to get weighty and dramatic when the fun set-up couldn't support the weight

I consider this spoiler material.

Welcome to the forum, Triflic!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:50 pm 
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ronen wrote:
Triflic wrote:
Bloom went south for me when the story tried to get weighty and dramatic when the fun set-up couldn't support the weight

I consider this spoiler material.

Welcome to the forum, Triflic!


'fixed' --- meaning white-ified.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 6:20 pm 
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Feel free to start discussing the movie over in the Rants 'n' Raves section...it needs the company!

*looks at it wistfully*

And thanks for not yelling at me for messing with your post ^_^

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 9:48 pm 
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Hey Kurt, pleasure to have you on the forum! As a regular Twitch reader, send the whole crew over there my regards.

Triflic wrote:
I'm also curious why The Brothers Bloom was originally titled Penelope. I know that in her own charismatic way, Ms. Weisz is the heart and soul of the film, but at the same time, that title seems doesn't seem to fit (and I guessing it was changed due to the Christina Ricci fable). The Brothers Bloom is definitely the better title.


I'm really glad you think so - 'Penelope' as a title was always a sort of misdirection, as the film's obviously about the brothers. But at the same time, beyond her charms, she's the point on which the compass turns for both of the Brothers. She isn't the movie's main arc but she puts it in motion, and it somehow felt appropriate for a con man movie to be titled after the hand which isn't holding the cards. Also I thought 'Penelope' just had a ring to it. (And evidently so did Ms. Ricci. Godblessher.)

Triflic wrote:
Question: Did you (Rian) enjoy the Argentinian grifter flick "NINE QUEENS"?


I have to watch it again, it's been awhile. And I've since seen the American remake, which I wasn't a fan of, and which sorta clouded my memory of the original even more. My vague recollection though is that I enjoyed the film but was underwhelmed by the twist at the end, or maybe just by the ending. But I should revisit it.

This is a whole other conversation, but I honestly can't remember the last movie that really made an impact on me with a plot twist. And with the movies I love that feature big plot twists (Sleuth, House of Games, etc) the twists have little to do with what I enjoy about them. Which is part of what motivated some of the choices in Bloom.

Thoughts?


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 17, 2008 4:40 pm 
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On Nine Queens:

Nine Queens ending is weak, but the last 20 minutes is a spot on bit of commentary on the Argentinian economy as it went down in flames the year before NQ was made. Never caught the remake, but the original is worth the revisit for the opening 2 acts more than the convoluted House-of-Games-esque closing one.

On Twists:

I agree on the Twist thing. I'm not a fan of movies that are overtly relying on the twist over the rest of the film (Which is why M. Night's Unbreakable is 100x the film that is The 6th Sense).

Take the Prestige for instance, there is kinda-sorta-a-twist, but it's telegraphed right from the 'bird-magic-trick' at the beginning, and really, in that film, the idea of technology vs. magic is much more intriguing than the actual plot. Speaking of Mr. Nolan, the kinda-sorta twist in Memento is pretty darn good and a great way to cap off that flick.

Furthermore, movies that give up their 'twist' in unusual ways before the 1/2 way point (like Brad Anderson's THE MACHINIST, and Mamoru Oshii's THE SKY CRAWLERS) - or for that matter Kashuo Ishiguru's fabulous novel NEVER LET ME GO - are better films for it.

One film where the twist recontextualized the film quite dramatically the second time around is David Fincher's Fight Club. The Marla-Narrator-Tyler triangle is a fascinating thing to observe on the second go around. Truly a deserving twist in a well constructed satire.

Likewise, a novel I'm patiently waiting to be adapted into at $60M (ish) European production (a pipedream, but ya gotta dream) is Alistair Reynolds novel CHASM CITY (which comes with my highest recommendation btw). It's got a doozy of a twist that is nicely integrated into the basic themes of the novel and yet, it is only a small element in an otherwise pulp-scifi-noir-action-revenge-fuckin-masterpiece.

Also (because I'm rambling on here) perhaps the single greatest and inevitable twist in the history of Cinema is John Frankenheimer's masterpiece SECONDS. Wow, that's how to end a film.

Recently at TIFF, I also caught Christian Petzold's 'immigrant-noir' JERICHOW, that uses its twist to comment on the 'successful' immigrant experience in modern Germany. A pretty angry twist that leaves the ending as a fair bit of work to be done by the viewer...the more I think about it, it's a pretty darn slick ending for a neo-noir.

I should also mention the recent Spanish flick TIME CRIMES (Spanish genre cinema is absolutely on fire recently), it is a film of constant twists (and little else outside of a a thin morsel of nihilism), yet the way it rewards the viewer as it plays out (The film gets ahead of the audience, then lets the audience get ahead of it, then sprints back ahead of the audience) is like nothing I've ever seen before. A hilarious audience film as people keep having "AHA!" moments over the course of the film, and nearly everyone has a giddy smile that this little film is fucking with them in the best possible way.

Finally, yes I passed your kind words over to the Twitch crew, we're glad you are reading!


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2008 4:31 am 
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(Rian) can’t help loading his film with more stylistic and thematic baggage than its thin frame can bear.

Technically a negative review, perhaps, but did they just compare the movie to a thin chick with breast implants?

Dude, this review is totally worth it.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2008 3:36 pm 
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ronen wrote:
(Rian) can’t help loading his film with more stylistic and thematic baggage than its thin frame can bear.

Technically a negative review, perhaps, but did they just compare the movie to a thin chick with breast implants?

Dude, this review is totally worth it.


I've been told by every Londoner I've spoken to that a bad review from the Evening Standard is actually a badge of honor for a film. I guess they're sort of the British Rex Reed.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 1:14 pm 
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2009 Films I Can’t Wait To See Again
-Assassination of a High School President: the last known distributor of Brett Simon’s entertaining noir lark recently declared bankruptcy, so who knows whether or not they’ll be finally forced to open it or simply unload onto a studio that might know how to give it the release it deserves
-The Brothers Bloom: Rian Johnson’s crime caper seems perfectly whimsical and quirky on the surface – helped in no small part by Rachel Weisz’ loosest, giddiest performance to date – but a second viewing might help unravel just how these characters try to con their marks for a living and deceive themselves with regards to life
-The Good, The Bad, The Weird: Ji-Woon Kim’s Korean action-adventure/Spaghetti western epic is a peculiar blast from the past, a unique and exhilarating mix of The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly with, say, Kung Fu Hustle and the first Pirates of the Caribbean, and boy, do I hope that’s enough to get you to catch it on as big and loud a screen as possible
-How to Get Rid of the Others: maybe, just maybe, some kindly North American distributor will find room for this pitch black Danish comedy in which that nation’s malcontents are round up and threatened with execution if they don’t justify the toll they’ve collectively taken on the well-behaved, tax-paying populace

http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/featu ... ature=2640

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 1:34 pm 
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maxfrost wrote:
2009 Films I Can’t Wait To See Again
-Assassination of a High School President: the last known distributor of Brett Simon’s entertaining noir lark recently declared bankruptcy, so who knows whether or not they’ll be finally forced to open it or simply unload onto a studio that might know how to give it the release it deserves
-The Brothers Bloom: Rian Johnson’s crime caper seems perfectly whimsical and quirky on the surface – helped in no small part by Rachel Weisz’ loosest, giddiest performance to date – but a second viewing might help unravel just how these characters try to con their marks for a living and deceive themselves with regards to life
-The Good, The Bad, The Weird: Ji-Woon Kim’s Korean action-adventure/Spaghetti western epic is a peculiar blast from the past, a unique and exhilarating mix of The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly with, say, Kung Fu Hustle and the first Pirates of the Caribbean, and boy, do I hope that’s enough to get you to catch it on as big and loud a screen as possible
-How to Get Rid of the Others: maybe, just maybe, some kindly North American distributor will find room for this pitch black Danish comedy in which that nation’s malcontents are round up and threatened with execution if they don’t justify the toll they’ve collectively taken on the well-behaved, tax-paying populace

http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/featu ... ature=2640


Three of those four films, I saw at Fantastic Fest. Two of those three, I saw back-to-back.


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