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Last Movie You Watched 
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Ken wrote:
I haven't seen The Exorcist Part III in a good long while, but I remember being surprised by how good it was.

Do you have plans to watch either version of the prequel? The Schrader one is far from perfect, but it's well worth a look.


III has, if I may be so bold, the best scary scene in both of the films that I just watched. So, so long, and pay off terrifically.

I think I watched The Beginning when I was 15 (and not yet into films), and remember literally nothing about it except two scenes: Nazi execution, and some bloody dogs/hyenas writhing near a well.

Thanks for the rec; I might keep an eye out for it.


Fri Nov 01, 2013 8:26 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
I gather you had the sense to avoid Exorcist II: The Heretic.

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Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:37 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
I've never understood the whole "Whoa! that was good!" appeal of The Exorcist III. I mean, it's not Part II-awful, but I found it to be mediocre and messy.

Haven't seen it in years, but then again, haven't felt like it either.

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Fri Nov 01, 2013 9:34 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Machete Kills - ** 1/2 out of ****

Mildly amusing. Saved by a great supporting cast. Mel Gibson, Damien Bichir, Amber Heard, Michelle Rodriguez, Sofia Vergara, Jessica Alba. They are all great. Heck, even Charlie Sheen, credited as Carlos Estevez, is great. And while the character of The Chameleon is pointless, Walton Goggins has a great cameo as well. Too bad the ending sucks. Really, even in a silly romp like this, that ending is inexcusable.


Sat Nov 02, 2013 6:12 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Limitless I almost didn't watch this as I was switching channels, but I decided to go back and give it a chance. It ended up being quite good, considering I had no expectations. Bradley Cooper filled in the lead role quite well, and there was good intrigue and tension along the way. Robert DeNiro pretty much sleepwalked through his role, but it was good seeing him. Nothing remotely great, but I enjoyed it. Grade: B-

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Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:28 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Thief12 wrote:
Limitless I almost didn't watch this as I was switching channels, but I decided to go back and give it a chance. It ended up being quite good, considering I had no expectations. Bradley Cooper filled in the lead role quite well, and there was good intrigue and tension along the way. Robert DeNiro pretty much sleepwalked through his role, but it was good seeing him. Nothing remotely great, but I enjoyed it. Grade: B-


Actually I think De Niro has a couple nice little moments

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Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:34 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
I'm watching the BBC production of "Little Dorrit," which is interesting because it's based on a Dickens novel that I know nothing about. There was a six-hour film version (actually two linked movies) that I haven't seen. This I think totals to eight hours to give more room to all the extraneous subplots. Amy Dorrit is one of the less interesting characters in it, which seems normal for Dickens. This is the novel in which Dickens detailed life in a debtors prison, among many other things.

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Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:06 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Blue is the Warmest Color-- ***1/2

I weighed in on this movie over in the Recent Reviews section, but I'll add a little more over here. This is definitely a compelling film; the sex scenes and the actresses/director beef may be getting all the attention, but this is at its heart a great coming-of-age story. Three hours is a long time to sit in a theater, especially for a dialogue-driven movie, but this one kept me engaged throughout. Believe it or not, there's actually some kinship with Before Midnight in the sense that it shows how tough it is to maintain relationships once the red-hot, passionate times have simmered down. A lot has to happen before the movie gets to the sex; we get to know Adele quite well as a character in the first hour or so, which depicts her high school life. Some individual scenes drag a bit, but overall I understand the need for a lengthy running time.

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Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:53 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
KWRoss wrote:
Blue is the Warmest Color-- ***1/2

I weighed in on this movie over in the Recent Reviews section, but I'll add a little more over here. This is definitely a compelling film; the sex scenes and the actresses/director beef may be getting all the attention, but this is at its heart a great coming-of-age story. Three hours is a long time to sit in a theater, especially for a dialogue-driven movie, but this one kept me engaged throughout. Believe it or not, there's actually some kinship with Before Midnight in the sense that it shows how tough it is to maintain relationships once the red-hot, passionate times have simmered down. A lot has to happen before the movie gets to the sex; we get to know Adele quite well as a character in the first hour or so, which depicts her high school life. Some individual scenes drag a bit, but overall I understand the need for a lengthy running time.


Looking forward to seeing this. Thanks for the write-up

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Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:58 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
JamesKunz wrote:
KWRoss wrote:
Blue is the Warmest Color-- ***1/2

I weighed in on this movie over in the Recent Reviews section, but I'll add a little more over here. This is definitely a compelling film; the sex scenes and the actresses/director beef may be getting all the attention, but this is at its heart a great coming-of-age story. Three hours is a long time to sit in a theater, especially for a dialogue-driven movie, but this one kept me engaged throughout. Believe it or not, there's actually some kinship with Before Midnight in the sense that it shows how tough it is to maintain relationships once the red-hot, passionate times have simmered down. A lot has to happen before the movie gets to the sex; we get to know Adele quite well as a character in the first hour or so, which depicts her high school life. Some individual scenes drag a bit, but overall I understand the need for a lengthy running time.


Looking forward to seeing this. Thanks for the write-up


Any time. BTW, you're on the Eastern Shore, right? So where do you go for a good independent movie?

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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
KWRoss wrote:
JamesKunz wrote:
KWRoss wrote:
Blue is the Warmest Color-- ***1/2

I weighed in on this movie over in the Recent Reviews section, but I'll add a little more over here. This is definitely a compelling film; the sex scenes and the actresses/director beef may be getting all the attention, but this is at its heart a great coming-of-age story. Three hours is a long time to sit in a theater, especially for a dialogue-driven movie, but this one kept me engaged throughout. Believe it or not, there's actually some kinship with Before Midnight in the sense that it shows how tough it is to maintain relationships once the red-hot, passionate times have simmered down. A lot has to happen before the movie gets to the sex; we get to know Adele quite well as a character in the first hour or so, which depicts her high school life. Some individual scenes drag a bit, but overall I understand the need for a lengthy running time.


Looking forward to seeing this. Thanks for the write-up


Any time. BTW, you're on the Eastern Shore, right? So where do you go for a good independent movie?


I'm fortunate that the local cinema in Easton, where I live, plays an independent movie every Thursday. That's pretty clutch, and allowed me to see In A World... and The Way Way Back recently, with Wadjda coming in two weeks.

Failing that, though, I drive across the bridge to Annapolis like I did today to see 12 Years a Slave

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Sat Nov 02, 2013 10:24 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
JamesKunz wrote:
KWRoss wrote:
Blue is the Warmest Color-- ***1/2

I weighed in on this movie over in the Recent Reviews section, but I'll add a little more over here. This is definitely a compelling film; the sex scenes and the actresses/director beef may be getting all the attention, but this is at its heart a great coming-of-age story. Three hours is a long time to sit in a theater, especially for a dialogue-driven movie, but this one kept me engaged throughout. Believe it or not, there's actually some kinship with Before Midnight in the sense that it shows how tough it is to maintain relationships once the red-hot, passionate times have simmered down. A lot has to happen before the movie gets to the sex; we get to know Adele quite well as a character in the first hour or so, which depicts her high school life. Some individual scenes drag a bit, but overall I understand the need for a lengthy running time.


Looking forward to seeing this. Thanks for the write-up


Same. The only place this is playing near me is 45 minutes away, so I've been waiting for the right time to drive out and get a double feature out of the day with All Is Lost. The theater, at least at the times I most often go, is usually made up of senior citizens with nothing to do and so they buy their tickets without completely knowing what they're in for. That kind of an audience could make for a memorable viewing of Blue Is The Warmest Color.

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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
JamesKunz wrote:
Thief12 wrote:
Limitless I almost didn't watch this as I was switching channels, but I decided to go back and give it a chance. It ended up being quite good, considering I had no expectations. Bradley Cooper filled in the lead role quite well, and there was good intrigue and tension along the way. Robert DeNiro pretty much sleepwalked through his role, but it was good seeing him. Nothing remotely great, but I enjoyed it. Grade: B-


Actually I think De Niro has a couple nice little moments


He does, but it's nothing mind-blowing coming from him.


Anyway, another watch today... Olympus Has Fallen was a fairly entertaining, albeit clichéd and predictable action-fest. Far from a masterpiece, still. Gerard Butler was too hammy and overacting, plus I think the director went too high with some of the overdramatic, patriotic shots, and it plays too much to the vibe of Die Hard, but I still thought it was fun; at least for once. Grade: C+

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Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:06 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Two movies in theaters yesterday.

Ender's Game
(2013) ***

I was pleasantly surprised. They cut out the on-earth maneuverings I knew they would (and was fine with -- they drag the book to a screeching halt and would have been even worse cinematically) but also cut a lot of the battle school scenes that made the book so engaging. However, with that said, the film crafted a strong narrative and did justice to the themes of the novel. It's not quite as good as Gravity of course, but it's cool seeing two major science fiction releases within a month, and have both of them be good.

12 Years a Slave (2013) ***1/2

Ebert was once asked what the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 star rating for him was and he said "the tingle down my spine." I don't always agree, but here it applies completely. Every aspect of this movie was well made, but there was no tingle down my spine at all. That may sound like a meaningless criticism, but let me go a bit further. Say what you will about Spielberg, but for better or worse he makes you feel. Steve McQueen, by contrast, is an exceptionally chilly director. He and Kubrick might have been best pals. Sometimes this works (the first third of Hunger) but sometimes it doesn't (the last third of Hunger) and in 12 Years a Slave, I think it kept me at an emotional distance. I *observed* horrors, but I wasn't horrified by them. So while it's no doubt a good film, I don't think it's a great film.

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Sun Nov 03, 2013 9:27 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Glad to hear from a lot of people that Ender's Game is good, as I will see it in the next day or two. I also have noticed that those who have not read the book tend to rate it very highly.

42 (2013)

It followed the formula to a tee, but that's not necessarily a bad thing when it's executed well. The smooth direction elevated the movie, as did the performances. Harrison Ford is good but the real standout is Chadwick Boseman in a difficult role that has to infuse a famous figure with both some historical accuracy and a personality, and he did it well. Another performance that leaves an impression is Alan Tudyk, who is quite a chameleon: from lovable (Firefly), scary (Dollhouse), clueless (Tucker & Dale), to convincingly and hateably racist in this role. Also striking is a scene showing how racism can be passed down through parents and peer pressure in a boy (very brief but good performance there). 7.5/10

The To-Do List (2013)

I suppose the story is uneven and relies heavily on sketches at times, but damn is it funny. Aubrey Plaza puts and stretches her Parks persona to deadpan good use (love the in-joke to the show: "I'd have to report this to the Parks department"), and the screenplay is consistently clever throughout. All the supporting performances also made the stock roles very appealing and fun to watch. There are of course the requisite late dramatic scenes/morals, but the film keeps it short, subversive and breezy enough for them to go down easy. 8/10


Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:33 am
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
JamesKunz wrote:
12 Years a Slave (2013) ***1/2

Ebert was once asked what the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 star rating for him was and he said "the tingle down my spine." I don't always agree, but here it applies completely. Every aspect of this movie was well made, but there was no tingle down my spine at all. That may sound like a meaningless criticism, but let me go a bit further. Say what you will about Spielberg, but for better or worse he makes you feel. Steve McQueen, by contrast, is an exceptionally chilly director. He and Kubrick might have been best pals. Sometimes this works (the first third of Hunger) but sometimes it doesn't (the last third of Hunger) and in 12 Years a Slave, I think it kept me at an emotional distance. I *observed* horrors, but I wasn't horrified by them. So while it's no doubt a good film, I don't think it's a great film.

Agreed almost 100%. 100% if we're just talking about 12 Years a Slave. I like Hunger more than most.

I guess this is our Best Picture winner? If the Oscars were today, anyway.

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Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:27 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Pedro wrote:
JamesKunz wrote:
12 Years a Slave (2013) ***1/2

Ebert was once asked what the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 star rating for him was and he said "the tingle down my spine." I don't always agree, but here it applies completely. Every aspect of this movie was well made, but there was no tingle down my spine at all. That may sound like a meaningless criticism, but let me go a bit further. Say what you will about Spielberg, but for better or worse he makes you feel. Steve McQueen, by contrast, is an exceptionally chilly director. He and Kubrick might have been best pals. Sometimes this works (the first third of Hunger) but sometimes it doesn't (the last third of Hunger) and in 12 Years a Slave, I think it kept me at an emotional distance. I *observed* horrors, but I wasn't horrified by them. So while it's no doubt a good film, I don't think it's a great film.

Agreed almost 100%. 100% if we're just talking about 12 Years a Slave. I like Hunger more than most.

I guess this is our Best Picture winner? If the Oscars were today, anyway.


I guess so. I would be largely okay with it, but hell, I felt more flush with the excitement of cinema in at least 5 other films that came out this year, and we're barely in November

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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
Two more watches, first one on DVD and second one on TV...

Ginger & Rosa A well-done drama about two British teens at the peak of the Cold War era, juggling the typical issues of their age: love, sex, and paternal relationships, as well as the ensuing world issues around them and the threats of a nuclear catastrophe. The performances are all-around great, led by Elle Fanning and newcomer Alice Englert, who play the two best friends to perfection. The cast is rounded out by Alessandro Nivola, Christina Hendricks, and Annette Bening, among others. The film never reaches a peak, but it does carry a lot of emotional moments and great performances. Grade: B+

Zoolander Caught this on TV and, even though I had seen it before, I had to rewatch it. I love this comedy. It's so stupidly funny that I can't help but laugh at it. Ben Stiller and Will Ferrell are great, and Stiller does a great job directing it. Sure, some things are plain silly and not necessarily funny, but I still think it's a great comedy. Grade: B+

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Sun Nov 03, 2013 10:27 pm
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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
The Professionals (1966)

Had some promise, but ultimately disappointing, soft western. Despite Richard Brooks' flat direction, this cast could have made it great. Unfortunately, though the script is workable, it's a soft, amoral story with an ending stupid enough to rank alongside Red River. And honestly, at the end of the day:

[Reveal] Spoiler:
Somebody has to die in a story like this. If nobody dies then nothing was at stake, and it's a pointless fluff of a movie.
So the director just wasted 2 hours of my time.


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Post Re: Last Movie You Watched
The Hunger Games (2011)

The Hunger Games is a perfect example of what can go wrong when studios try to add arty pretentions and sentiment to what should have just been a brainless action film with a few concise observations.

The Running Man did all of this, and with a greater degree of self-knowledge. The one profound part of this film, was the X-Factor/America Idol style interviews they give the contestants to dry drum up support or an emotional reaction from a dumb, overly-emotive, TV-lobotomized crowd.

Other than that ...meh!

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