I think it is about time I took a whipping. I thought Psycho and Rear Window were fine- not great, but fine. I ADORED Strangers on a Train and Notorious!
@Axe: I did have it in my top 20, but I recently bumped it out. Man, it hurts to bump out Vertigo from my top 30 list- its like pulling off a hangnail…
@Axelumog – You have to remember that Santino hates movies. This explains why he does not understand Seven Samurai.
C’mon, the ranking is very clearly….
3. Shadow of a Doubt
4. The Birds
…. not close!
The Birds? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
OK, seriously now.
I hear ya, I had to pick between Vertigo and Shadow of a Doubt for my top 20… Not having Shadow in my top 20 makes me feel physically ill.
That must be it, nothing else makes sense.
Hey hey go ahead and laugh the jokes on you NATE! The Birds is the real deal trust me, don’t let it’s pop culture rep take you down to bias town!
I have a soft spot for The Birds. Every time they gather around my bird-feeder I get the chills.
“everyone has those couple of closet universally acclaimed films that just don’t resonate.”
My closet is so stuffed full of films that are “universally acclaimed that just don’t resonate” that I could probably make a good run on Hoarders.
And everyone knows there’s Strangers on a Train and then there’s everything else.
I never thought much of Rear Window or The Birds. Rear Window is like Hitchock’s Panic Room.
..a Hitchcock discussion and nobody mentioned Rope….sigh….
..and I know that Santino didn’t really compare Rear Window to Panic Room……..I just know that didn’t just happen.
Rope IS my number 6 to be fair, it’s brilliant.
The Changeling (1980) – 3 stars
Not bad. Fun, old school haunting flick!
The Turin Horse
This post-post-apocalyptic view of the world is Tarr’s most oblique and pessimistic. Tarr creates a Beckett-infused reality, where the son and daughter can’t go on, but must go on. The wind blows relentlessly outside. The routines of dressing and eating potatoes are played out with relentless monotony. A para-Nietzschean neighbor calls to borrow some booze and gives a summation of Tarr’s, Hranitzsky’s, and Tarr’s co-writer László Krasznahorkai’s view that all is over – the acquirers have acquired everything, but realize too late it is really nothing. The world ends not with a bang, but a wind-blown whimper. The lights are out – and not just on Tarr’s cinematic journey. Nietzsche, the most amoral and relativistic of moral philosophers, is mad and so now are we.
Tarr has said this is his last film. It is Tarr’s version of the death of cinema, his Weekend. It is anti-traditional cinema at its most intense. Narrative structure is stripped bare. There is no real development, just endless circles of repetition, like a Dantean hell. Dialogue is a series of grunts and short commands like, “Come Here!”, uttered by the father to his daughter to help him dress. This is the starkest of black and white melodramas. The gypsies come and poison the well, because they are not welcomed. A circular plot that has no end or beginning. Just the perpetual darkness when all the embers have burned out and the wood worms no longer stir.
Tarr thumbs his nose for once and all at the brave new world of CGI 3-D technicolored epics at the multiplex. For his guts – 5/5.
Inspite of its deceptive simplicity or opacity of images, this is a film that further explores the metaphysical abyss so well laid out in Sátántangó and Werckmeister Harmonies. Perhaps with this film, Tarr announces to us his own death. But I sincerely hope it is not imminent. Cinema needs this curmudgeon.
What Happened Was… (Dir. Tom Noonan, 1994)
What a great movie! Watching these two ping pong back and fourth was riveting.
The Hunger Games 7/10
In what is probably the best movie I will see at mainstream theaters all year, The Hunger Games takes a great premise and does a passable job with it. Taking the Roman Collisseum into a futuristic setting is such an obviously great concept for a scifi movie I’m surprised this is the first time it has really surfaced. The Hunger Games tells the story well and kept me entertained, but it also drove me crazy seeing so many missed opportunities to make a stronger statement.
We see a hint of the voyeuristic mentality of the whole thing with a lot of darkly humorous commentary from the television broadcast. We don’t, however, see people watching at home crying out for blood. The film really could have used a few scenes of the home viewers cheering somebody’s murder or casually discussing whose head they’d rather see bashed in. Also, I liked the way they had the leaders in charge discuss the kind of narrative they wanted to present, but the way they kept arbitrarily messing with the rules made it seem more cartoony than the dark social commentary it was trying to make. The movie seemed not to have the guts to be as dark or socially relevant as it wanted to be. Ten minutes before the ending I was ready to give it a 5/10 or something, and it wasn’t until the very end that pushed it up to a 7.
(Heavy spoilers from here on out)
The film also never really put the protagonists in a position where they had to kill anybody sympathetic. Whenever the main character killed somebody it was directly in self defense and it was always somebody the audience already hated. It would have been awesome if they had the man from 11 who saved her life earlier outsurvive the main villain. That way he could maybe offer to make it quick and painless as she tried to talk him down, and she could have been forced to kill somebody the audience liked in self defense, but the film was afraid to go there, so instead they just had him mauled by large animals. Or what if, say, Roo outsurvived the main villain, and the last survivor other than the main characters was somebody the audience loved? That would have forced them to rebel more strongly against the games.
What I really loved about the ending happened after the games were over. The two main characters rebelled against the game and won. And what happened? They coopted her rebellion into their narrative, and turned it into just a dramatic plot twist. So nobody was outraged and rioted against the games like they wanted, and they were forced to keep playing their part in the narrative as star crossed lovers. That is what pushed my opinion of the movie from ‘decent’ to ‘good’.
The Raid—HOLY shit
so amazing I had to post twice, apparently
Sorry guys…. I’ve been busy as a beaver recently but I have watched several movies including the new Abel Ferarra flick and I also finally saw We Need to Talk about Kevin.
Will write reviews soon!
Peace out! :)
I finally updated my log for March
please everyone go to my profile page and leave a comment
Memories of Murder – 4/10 SPOILERS BELOW
A crime thriller that is a bit “Fincher-esque” which is fine by me, it strikes an interesting tone with it’s comedic approach to darker material. That’s about all I got for positive notes…
On the negative side: One thing the Finch usually avoids (thankfully) is the tried and untrue “who-dun-it” narrative structure, where you go red herring, after red herring, after red herring… This gets tiresome very quickly. This film finds this out first hand. It boasts some pretty obvious “set-ups” that you see coming from a million miles away (the mountainside taped confession for example). Couple that with some really ridiculous deus ex-machina deaths (Their one witness just happens to get run over by a train just moments after they realize he’s their only witness and track him down…. riiiiiiiight.) and you have yourself a nice one.
Black Orpheus 5/10
Plot make no sense!!!!!!
I’m happy to see Hunger Games is doing so well at the box office. Probably all the movies this year that are better than it will be only screened at art houses. Sure as heck more deserving than Avatar.
The Hunger Games – 2 stars
Boring. Lazy writing.
Mainstream at its worst.
Blow Out – 3/10
Tacky music? Check. Unwatchable acting from Nancy Allen? Check. Terrible genre clichés and a plot that doesn’t even make sense? Check.
A Brian De Palma film that is somehow worse than Carlito’s Way? ___.
Doktor faustus 1982
The devil to pay
dbbl post…forum acting up
I’d be curious to hear a further explanation of your view.
I think it compares positively writing-wise to, say, Avatar.
Full complete 5 1/2 hour restoration, live orchestra, real Polyvision. An ecstatic exciting experience. Fucking wow.
@ Jirin -
SPOILERS ALL OVER
I have to admit that this material is not really geared towards me. I’m not the demographic for The Hunger Games and I don’t really think it as good as something like Harry Potter to appeal to people outside the demographic (although the weekend box office results prove I’m probably wrong on this – haha).
One of the biggest problems I had with The Hunger Games is the way the rules were set up and then changed at a whim. They paint themselves into a corner but don’t know how to get out so they just change the rules. First only one person can survive. Oh but how is that going to work? Ok, let’s change the rules so two people can survive but only if they’re from the same district. But then let’s change it again to only one person. Oh but let’s allow them both to live..blah blah blah. The whole thing was ridiculous. If you’re going to change the rules anytime you don’t know how to overcome the obstacle you’ve created, how am I supposed to care about these characters? Why do I care about any of these characters if you’re going yank the puppet strings like that?
Another problem I had was that we all know that they’re all going to die. That’s the point, right? So when the little girl dies, it was no surprise nor was it heartbreaking because you knew she would. Ditto with all the others (as an aside, the teen gang thing also bothered me).
Also, on a much grander scale – I thought it was bizarre that everyone accepts these games, where children are slaughter. This is the 74th annual games so this has been going on for 74 years? And people just accept it – the only time one of the districts riots is when the little girl is killed? Why weren’t they rioting before? It just seems so bizarre to me, this promotion of fascism/authoritarianism. It didn’t seem grounded in real human behavior. I can accept people living under a totalitarian regime but it seems like in places like North Korea or Cuba, the leaders have indoctrinated the people into thinking that their leaders are great. But in The Hunger Games, everyone in the district knows the people in charge are evil. They’re so afraid, they’re so fearful. And that’s find if the leadership is passive but in the film, they’re killing their children. If you have nothing to live for, why wouldn’t you fight? It’s like people in some of the Middle Eastern coutnries – if you have absolutely nothing to live for, you will not fear death if it means a better life for future generations.
So those were a couple of my qualms with the film. I also found it too be ridiculously long; they clearly had trouble in the vast desert wasteland that is the second act and I had a hard time staying awake.
Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2002) 5/5
Great film! Clooney is one of the best directors working today.