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Last Movie You Watched 
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
unwindfilms wrote:
I can hardly wait for Avatar 2 :-)

If there's anything I dislike about Avatar, it's that the film's success at the box office convinced Cameron to work on a sequel rather than on the film I've been wanting to see from him, Battle Angel.

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Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:28 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Vexer wrote:

I wasn't "willing" to hate it, I just think the 3-D blinded some critics(including JB) as to how unremarkable the story was otherwise. It's not a bad film, but it's not that great of a film either, it's just decent at best.


You and I are pretty much in agreement. I saw Avatar in 2-D, because I felt that if the movie wasn't any good in 2-D then it probably wouldn't be any good in 3-D. Seeing it in 2-D actually amplified some of the film's weaknesses. The storytelling is pretty pedestrian, and there's nothing in Avatar that hasn't been done before story-wise. If we're being honest here, it's basically Dances With Wolves and The Last Samurai set in a sci-fi universe. Cameron got to play with all that money, but he forgot to write a compelling tale with character I cared about. Still, it was better than True Lies.

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Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:31 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Sexual Chocolate wrote:
You and I are pretty much in agreement. I saw Avatar in 2-D, because I felt that if the movie wasn't any good in 2-D then it probably wouldn't be any good in 3-D. Seeing it in 2-D actually amplified some of the film's weaknesses. The storytelling is pretty pedestrian, and there's nothing in Avatar that hasn't been done before story-wise. If we're being honest here, it's basically Dances With Wolves and The Last Samurai set in a sci-fi universe. Cameron got to play with all that money, but he forgot to write a compelling tale with character I cared about. Still, it was better than True Lies.


I saw Avatar 3D 3 times in the Cinema and once in 2D before I got my 3D TV where I have seen many times more (own the 3D blu ray). On 2D you really miss the world of Pandora in all its glory and you do not get so immersed in the story as well. In regarding the story, even Cameron seems to borrow from other movies at times , he still incorporates some original bits with a final result of all this mix to be quite entertaining to the point that many people saw it many times (otherwise, it would have not passed the 2Billion mark in the box office).

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Last edited by unwindfilms on Sat Mar 23, 2013 5:33 am, edited 1 time in total.



Fri Mar 22, 2013 11:04 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
unwindfilms wrote:
Sexual Chocolate wrote:
You and I are pretty much in agreement. I saw Avatar in 2-D, because I felt that if the movie wasn't any good in 2-D then it probably wouldn't be any good in 3-D. Seeing it in 2-D actually amplified some of the film's weaknesses. The storytelling is pretty pedestrian, and there's nothing in Avatar that hasn't been done before story-wise. If we're being honest here, it's basically Dances With Wolves and The Last Samurai set in a sci-fi universe. Cameron got to play with all that money, but he forgot to write a compelling tale with character I cared about. Still, it was better than True Lies.


I saw Avatar 3D 3 times on the Cinema and once in 2D before I got my 3D TV where I have seen many times more (own the 3D blu ray). On 2D you really miss the world of Pandora in all its glory and you do not get so immersed in the story as well. In regarding the story, even Cameron seems to borrow from other movies at times , he still incorporates some original bits with a final result of all this mix to be quite entertaining to the point that many people saw it many times (otherwise, it would have not passed the 2Billion mark in the box office).
I'm not bothered by him borrowing from other films so much, what really bothes me is how one-dimensional the characters are, and no amount of "immersive" 3-D can distract me from that, the military figures are all 100% evil and the na-vi are 100% pure, and there's that incredibly annoying environmental message that Cameron insists on shoving down people's throats at every single opportunity, after seeing that film, I wanted to go out and buy a Hummer. It's better then Titanic, but definitely not better then True Lies, i'd much rather get a sequel to that film then this one.


Sat Mar 23, 2013 1:05 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Vexer wrote:
I'm not bothered by him borrowing from other films so much, what really bothes me is how one-dimensional the characters are, and no amount of "immersive" 3-D can distract me from that, the military figures are all 100% evil and the na-vi are 100% pure, and there's that incredibly annoying environmental message that Cameron insists on shoving down people's throats at every single opportunity, after seeing that film, I wanted to go out and buy a Hummer.


Well there is not such thing as 100%. Jake Sully was a military himself and you have Trudy Chacon (Michele Rodriguez) herself who did not have even an Avatar and they were good. You last comment brought to my mind that Arnold Schwarzenegger as a Governor liked to lecture a bit about the environment but he also owned a hummer lol Anyway, I like when films make me think deeper about something and entertain me at the same time. For instance, I liked Life of Pi but that did not mean that I became religious because of it ;-)

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 1:21 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
unwindfilms wrote:
Vexer wrote:
I'm not bothered by him borrowing from other films so much, what really bothes me is how one-dimensional the characters are, and no amount of "immersive" 3-D can distract me from that, the military figures are all 100% evil and the na-vi are 100% pure, and there's that incredibly annoying environmental message that Cameron insists on shoving down people's throats at every single opportunity, after seeing that film, I wanted to go out and buy a Hummer.


Well there is not such thing as 100%. Jake Sully was a military himself and you have Trudy Chacon (Michele Rodriguez) herself who did not have even an Avatar and they were good. You last comment brought to my mind that Arnold Schwarzenegger as a Governor liked to lecture a bit about the environment but he also owned a hummer lol Anyway, I like when films make me think deeper about something and entertain me at the same time. For instance, I liked Life of Pi but that did not mean that I became religious because of it ;-)

Well maybe not 100%, but they were still one-dimensional caricatures for me and I had a very time taking them seriously, I failed to see any kind of "deeper meaning" in the film, Transformers had a deeper menaing then that film did IMO.


Sat Mar 23, 2013 1:58 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Vexer wrote:
I'm not bothered by him borrowing from other films so much, what really bothes me is how one-dimensional the characters are, and no amount of "immersive" 3-D can distract me from that, the military figures are all 100% evil and the na-vi are 100% pure, and there's that incredibly annoying environmental message that Cameron insists on shoving down people's throats at every single opportunity, after seeing that film, I wanted to go out and buy a Hummer. It's better then Titanic, but definitely not better then True Lies, i'd much rather get a sequel to that film then this one.


Avatar is what I like to call a "white savior" film, in which the white man encounters a culture, realizes the error of his ways (and thus his whiteness), and then goes into "kill whitey" mode. You're absolutely right about the portrayals of the military and the Na'vi; there is no nuance, it's pretty simple. White people bad, Na'vi good.

I hope for the day filmmakers realize that technology is a tool to tell the story, but not the film itself, and I really hope that people will someday realize that 3-D is a stupid, silly gimmick that adds nothing to the film and only exists to justify higher ticket prices.

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 7:49 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Django Unchained (2012) - 3.5 out of 4

Django Unchained finds Tarantino in fine form but is certainly not his most thorough or completely thought-out experience. The drawback for me was that the pace was completely halted in certain moments in the Candie manor. I was still not taken out of the experience, but I definitely felt as if the film was meandering in these moments. What would I have done differently? I am not sure, but I got the feeling that the film's disparate chunks didn't coalesce as well as they ought to have. Having said that, this is a Tarantino film, and I am never going to be anything less than substantially entertained while watching them, as was the case with Django.

The acting is uniformly excellent. I have no idea why Waltz won the Academy Award seeing as he's almost playing exactly the same role, a German Bounty Hunter as opposed to a German Jew Hunter. I still fucking loved him though. Foxx, Washington and Jackson are also brilliant. But the film's highlight is of course my man Leonardo DiCaprio. I've been getting the feeling that he's pigeonholed himself too much into brooding and intense roles. Although Blood Diamond, The Departed, Inception, Shutter Island are all award-worthy performances, they're too similar in terms of what they require from Leo. Calvin Candie couldn't have been more different and one look at the film told me why Leo personally wanted to play this role. It was a riveting performance and he played the character with subtlety when he could've easily resorted to scenery-chewing. Had I seen this before the Pedros, Leo would've been top of my ballot for best supporting actor.

Overall, I did enjoy the film a lot. However, that sheer exhilaration I felt when Basterds got over with that fucking fantastic line, "You know something Utivich, I think this just might be my masterpiece." was definitely missing. (Which other director will have the balls to say something like that?) That is actually unfair to Django Unchained because Inglourious Basterds is the best writing and direction Tarantino's (or anybody for that matter) done since Pulp Fiction and one of the best films of the last decade to boot.

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Last edited by Balaji Sivaraman on Sat Mar 23, 2013 10:40 am, edited 1 time in total.



Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:48 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Sexual Chocolate wrote:
Avatar is what I like to call a "white savior" film, in which the white man encounters a culture, realizes the error of his ways (and thus his whiteness), and then goes into "kill whitey" mode. You're absolutely right about the portrayals of the military and the Na'vi; there is no nuance, it's pretty simple. White people bad, Na'vi good.

I hope for the day filmmakers realize that technology is a tool to tell the story, but not the film itself, and I really hope that people will someday realize that 3-D is a stupid, silly gimmick that adds nothing to the film and only exists to justify higher ticket prices.


Oh my view of Avatar is about what a private company does very far from Earth where the military were hired guns. It is also the first chapter of a longer history that only Cameron and maybe few others know how will it end ( I read somewhere that goes up to Avatar 4 lol) . I am interested in seeing the next chapter and I am not making any assumptions. Of course you are in your right not to continue seeing if you choose so or making any assumption at this early point of the whole story. At the end of the day it is only a fantasy/adventure film which if it is not entertaining you then better stop watching particularly if you are not seeing in 3D lol

In regarding to 3D , it can be used fully as a gimmick or it can serve the story very well as in Avatar, it will depend in the Director. Now, I have heard some comments from some of my friends sometimes that they like a lot the fancy 3D. I even enjoy the fancy 3D now and then as sometimes serves the story like for instance see Spiderman swinging around and shooting a cob web at you lol. At the end of the day if people do not go to see movies in 3D then it will disappear as it did in the 1950s but do not hold your breath that it will happen again, particularly this time with true believers Directors like James Cameron around who is also looking for ways to make the 3D technology better and add real value to your entertainment experience in the Cinema :-)

Cheers

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 10:07 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Here's the deal though:

I have never once seen a 3-D film that was made better specifically because it was in 3-D. Not even Hugo, and that may be the best example of a 3-D film I can imagine. The glasses and the images mostly give me a headache, so I actively go out of my way to avoid 3-D movies.

The best use of 3-D was in Jackass 3D: Chris Pontius inserts a party toy into his anus and farts. The toy extends itself fully toward the camera (and thus toward the audience's faces). This is the only practical use 3-D has in the cinema.

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:21 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Sexual Chocolate wrote:
Vexer wrote:

The storytelling is pretty pedestrian, and there's nothing in Avatar that hasn't been done before story-wise. If we're being honest here, it's basically Dances With Wolves and The Last Samurai set in a sci-fi universe. Cameron got to play with all that money, but he forgot to write a compelling tale with character I cared about. Still, it was better than True Lies.


In the same vein, I can recall an article in Entertainment Weekly that discussed the possibility of Avatar containing "hidden" messages. I found the article laughable precisely because I don't think there was a single hidden or subliminal message to be found within.

There were, however, many messages and ideas that Cameron repeatedly wacked the audience over the head with, using the proverbial sledgehammer approach so to speak.
-Jeremy

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:36 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
If only Avatar was as subtle as a sledgehammer. A fucking hydrogen bomb more like.

I've seen WWE pre-fight trash talk with more sublety. It's not without a few impressive elements, but it's just too ham-handed. PC button-pushing politics for 9 year olds

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 6:27 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
I'll take ten True Lies over one Avatar any day of the week. The former is a fun, thrill-ride that I can watch repeatedly. The latter was a worthy theater spectacle, but not much more. I haven't felt compelled to see it after theaters.

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 6:45 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
The Croods is the most convincing account of the origins of human society I've ever seen. 7.5 of 10.

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Sat Mar 23, 2013 7:38 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
From the last week:

Swing Time - The films of Fred Astaire might represent the largest absence in my movie-watching history. Oh sure, I've seen films with Fred Astaire in them, most notably 1959's On The Beach, but nothing from his prime, when he was paired with Ginger Rogers. This 1936 feature seems to be the one that is the most highly regarded in the Astaire/Rogers oeuvre, so I figured it was an appropriate place to start. And I wasn't disappointed, and in certain areas it exceeded my expectations. I expected stunning dance sequences with expert choreography and displays of talent, but I wasn't really anticipating all the material that would surround them. In the manner of these things, the actual mechanics of the plot are a little flimsy, really only serving to bridge the gaps between the dance numbers, but the writing is sharp and there are a number of memorable supporting characters. The natural chemistry between Astaire and Rogers is there too, with their quirky personalities meshing together wonderfully.

Still, it's the dance numbers that leave behind the most lasting impression, even though in the grand scheme of the film, they take up a relatively small amount of screen time. Especially in an age when musicals typically use rapid-fire editing to mask the performers' lack of talent, seeing the one-shot performances in Swing Time is a real delight. The number where Astaire dances around in blackface is a blunt reminder that the film comes from a different time, but that only distracts a little from what is still a classic display of physicality. There aren't many moments in the film that pass by without earning a smile, and true to form the film ends literally with all the characters laughing with each other. In these more cynical times, a completely jovial experience like Swing Time is worth taking the time to appreciate. 8/10.

Like Someone In Love - Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, after years of making films in his home country, has recently ventured out to shoot his films in new locations. First there was 2010's Certified Copy, made in Italy and about a man and a woman who may or may not be a couple, and now there is Like Someone In Love, made in Japan and about the triangular relationship between a prostitute, her elderly client, and her fiancé. Although my knowledge of Kiarostami's extensive filmography is embarrassingly limited (having only previously seen Close-Up and Certified Copy), he seems particularly interested in examining traditional human roles, and then subverting expectations. The characters of Like Someone In Love feel more straightforward than the central couple in Certified Copy, but they also feel more natural and less like artificial constructions to be manipulated by the whims of the filmmakers.

The college student from outside Tokyo who has to turn to prostitution to get by. The old man who hires the prostitute not for sex, but for companionship. The jealous fiancé who didn't finish school but who runs his own car repair shop, and who may be too young and hot-headed to be insisting on marriage. How these characters interact with each other could almost be called suspenseful, if it weren't for Kiarostami's typically laconic and unobtrusive style. Much of the action, if you can call it that, takes place in cars, a Kiarostami trademark, as the characters drive from one destination to another and the viewer learns more about their backgrounds and their relationships with each other. It all builds to a final violent moment that somehow manages to be both satisfyingly climactic and frustratingly abrupt at the same time. It's the kind of ending that many will find exasperating (similar to John Sayles' Limbo), but it works as a belated release to an extended period of bottled-up tension. And it's the kind of ending that still has me thinking about it days after. The year is still very young, but this is the first standout film I've seen from 2013. 8/10.

Anna Karenina - Joe Wright’s 2012 adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s classic novel scored deserved Oscar nominations for Best Production and Costume Design and won for the latter. To give credit where credit is due, the production and costume design is truly exceptional. A shame then that the film has so little else going for it. Wright is not a stranger to adaptations of classic literature, having previously worked with Keira Knightley on Pride & Prejudice, and so you would expect a confident directorial touch with this latest effort. Instead, what you get is an over-confident directorial touch. In a bizarre and frankly consistently distracting decision, Wright stages the film as a stage play, with characters moving on and offstage and interacting in front of artificial scenery. While this concept does lend itself occasionally to moments of real visual wonder and invention, more often than not it just comes across as Wright showing off.

His direction thankfully does settle down a little in the second half, but this only magnifies the weaknesses of the story presentation. I haven’t read the original novel, but at over 800 pages I’m assuming it contains a substantial amount of extra detail that couldn’t be transferred over to the film. I’m also assuming that Anna Karenina as a character is far more complex and sympathetic in the novel, because in the film she is incredibly irritating, and that seems to me like a critical flaw. Instead of sympathizing with Anna as she rebels against society and has her illicit affair, you end up wanting to strangle her for gleefully flaunting her affair with no remorse or pity for her husband (Jude Law, in the film’s most effective performance) and then moaning and complaining when society reacts negatively towards her. There actually is a point late in the film when Anna’s young lover Count Vronsky accuses her of being unbearable, and you sympathize with his frustration. It’s not necessarily Knightley’s fault though; once again it all comes back to Wright, and his failure to really judge any aspect of the production correctly. There was potential here for a standout adaptation, but Wright’s ego kills it. 4/10.

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Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:02 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Blonde Almond wrote:
From the last week:

Swing Time - The films of Fred Astaire might represent the largest absence in my movie-watching history. Oh sure, I've seen films with Fred Astaire in them, most notably 1959's On The Beach, but nothing from his prime, when he was paired with Ginger Rogers. This 1936 feature seems to be the one that is the most highly regarded in the Astaire/Rogers oeuvre, so I figured it was an appropriate place to start. And I wasn't disappointed, and in certain areas it exceeded my expectations. I expected stunning dance sequences with expert choreography and displays of talent, but I wasn't really anticipating all the material that would surround them. In the manner of these things, the actual mechanics of the plot are a little flimsy, really only serving to bridge the gaps between the dance numbers, but the writing is sharp and there are a number of memorable supporting characters. The natural chemistry between Astaire and Rogers is there too, with their quirky personalities meshing together wonderfully.

Still, it's the dance numbers that leave behind the most lasting impression, even though in the grand scheme of the film, they take up a relatively small amount of screen time. Especially in an age when musicals typically use rapid-fire editing to mask the performers' lack of talent, seeing the one-shot performances in Swing Time is a real delight. The number where Astaire dances around in blackface is a blunt reminder that the film comes from a different time, but that only distracts a little from what is still a classic display of physicality. There aren't many moments in the film that pass by without earning a smile, and true to form the film ends literally with all the characters laughing with each other. In these more cynical times, a completely jovial experience like Swing Time is worth taking the time to appreciate. 8/10.


That Astaire blackface number (Bojangles of Harlem) is problematic nowadays and brilliant. It was a tribute to Bill Robinson, so I forgive it a lot. That's the one where Astaire is dancing with his shadows. Swing Time has my single favorite Hollywood song ("The Way You Look Tonight"). The movie also has "Never Gonna Dance," which is one of those numbers where you hear what was involved and say, "Jesus Christ."

If I remember, "Bojangles of Harlem" is the one where you have several girls in white, and several girls in black, and they gradually merge their lines into black and white and it's perfect,

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Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:21 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Blonde Almond wrote:


Anna Karenina - Joe Wright’s 2012 adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s classic novel scored deserved Oscar nominations for Best Production and Costume Design and won for the latter. To give credit where credit is due, the production and costume design is truly exceptional. A shame then that the film has so little else going for it. Wright is not a stranger to adaptations of classic literature, having previously worked with Keira Knightley on Pride & Prejudice, and so you would expect a confident directorial touch with this latest effort. Instead, what you get is an over-confident directorial touch. In a bizarre and frankly consistently distracting decision, Wright stages the film as a stage play, with characters moving on and offstage and interacting in front of artificial scenery. While this concept does lend itself occasionally to moments of real visual wonder and invention, more often than not it just comes across as Wright showing off.

His direction thankfully does settle down a little in the second half, but this only magnifies the weaknesses of the story presentation. I haven’t read the original novel, but at over 800 pages I’m assuming it contains a substantial amount of extra detail that couldn’t be transferred over to the film. I’m also assuming that Anna Karenina as a character is far more complex and sympathetic in the novel, because in the film she is incredibly irritating, and that seems to me like a critical flaw. Instead of sympathizing with Anna as she rebels against society and has her illicit affair, you end up wanting to strangle her for gleefully flaunting her affair with no remorse or pity for her husband (Jude Law, in the film’s most effective performance) and then moaning and complaining when society reacts negatively towards her. There actually is a point late in the film when Anna’s young lover Count Vronsky accuses her of being unbearable, and you sympathize with his frustration. It’s not necessarily Knightley’s fault though; once again it all comes back to Wright, and his failure to really judge any aspect of the production correctly. There was potential here for a standout adaptation, but Wright’s ego kills it. 4/10.


Thanks for that. Now i don't have to feel guilty skipping it

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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Body Double

Brian De Palma really indulges his Hitchcock fetish here, with healthy doses of Rear Window and Vertigo tossed into the mix. This is a strange film, the kind that takes an hour of voyeurism before we get to any kind of central conflict, then shifts gears and sets us in a bizarre porno netherworld, finds time for a four-minute sequence featuring Frankie Goes to Hollywood, and then just ends. It's not a great film, but De Palma completists need to see this just to see all of his stylistic indulgences.

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Sun Mar 24, 2013 9:26 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Last watches...

Skyfall = B or B-
Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning = C or C+
Sinister = C- or D+
Seven Psychopaths = B

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Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:48 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Sexual Chocolate wrote:
Body Double

Brian De Palma really indulges his Hitchcock fetish here, with healthy doses of Rear Window and Vertigo tossed into the mix. This is a strange film, the kind that takes an hour of voyeurism before we get to any kind of central conflict, then shifts gears and sets us in a bizarre porno netherworld, finds time for a four-minute sequence featuring Frankie Goes to Hollywood, and then just ends. It's not a great film, but De Palma completists need to see this just to see all of his stylistic indulgences.


I feel the same way. It's a weird film.

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