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Since the 2009 movie thread has pretty much expired I thought I'd start a new one for people who want to talk about movies they saw.
I haven't seen many so far, probably because most of the really good ones are either pushed earlier for Oscar considerations or pushed later for better markets. But a few I want to see are coming around here soon, like Ajami, and I'm going to see Shutter Island and Green Zone. The only ones I've seen so far:
Red Riding 1974: 8/10
Red Riding 1980: 5/10
The Red Riding trilogy has been talked about as a trilogy about a serial killer, but it's really a serial killer about Yorkshire law enforcement. The serial killer differs from installment to installment, and the main thread connecting the three is pretty loose.
I enjoyed the 1974 one because of it's dark atmosphere and strong vigilante reporter main character. The problems with the 1974 one are slow pacing and some cliche over the top police corruption. The 1980 one had all the problems of 1974 but without any of the virtues. The only part that didn't bore me to death was the revelation at the end that connected it to the first. Red Riding is a one week only screening here. I was planning on seeing all three but now I think I'm going to wait for the DVD to see 1983.
Shutter island 6/10
pretty predictable but ultimately enjoyable. it really doesn't do anything new or exciting but there is some pretty tight filmmaking but what else is there to expect from scorsese?
I can't understand why they skipped over 1977. By far the best of the novels, imo. Nic, I think you like 1974 the best, right?
I haven't read the novels. All I know is I like the 1974 movie better than the 1980 movie. If they dropped one of the novels it's because, you got to make it a trilogy right? Epic film series are trilogies! If you go past three you have to to all the way up to seven. A quartology is just silly!
A movie taking place in a poor Islamic neighborhood in Israel, broken up into five chapters. The first four seem kind of scattershot at first, jumping around between storylines and forward and back in time, but then you realize they were just setting up the ending. The last chapter's choatic confluence of unfortunate misinterpretations results in one of the most depressing endings I've ever seen. The way the movie builds up to the ending is just brilliant.
Shutter Island: 5/10
The problem with Shutter Island is at the beginning they make it so obvious everybody is lying, packing on dense layers of psychological drama and conspiracy, you stop caring very much about the resolution. The twist at the end wasn't something I was expecting, but it neither surprised me very much nor made very much sense. Plus it was just like the twist in... I can't say which movie it was just the same as without spoiling it, but suffice to say it in no way new ground.
I've seen Lovely Bones a few weeks ago and it is pretty bad, the scenes on "real life" are decent, with a surprisingly good Mark Whalberg, but the scenes in "the place between Earth and Heaven" just sucks with awful visual effects, lame dialogues, failed emotional builds, clumsy metaphors... It heavens succeeds in the hard performance of making a scene with Song to the Sirens by This Mortal Coil totally pointless and emotionless.
Add to that a lame romance, bad endings and a performance by Stanley Tucci that starts impressive but ends pretty dull and worn out.
I've also seen Fantastic Mr Fox yesterday and I totally loved it, much a better Road Dahl adaptation than Tim Burton's Willy Wonka, with at the same time the spirit of the original book and the Anderson universe. Some of Anderson's twitches (tics ?) are slightly annoying, but as a whole it works.
The Ghost Writer: 7/10
A Polanski movie, which starts out looking like it's going to be political satire then turns into Chinatown about the Iraq War. It's the sort of movie where the characters are fictional, but it's obvious which character is supposed to represent which real life figure. It would have gotten an eight if they ended the movie two scenes earlier. They spent the entire movie skirting the line of believability, then at the very end jumped over it just for the sake of saying "Yes I am a Roman Polanski movie".
A Prophet: 8/10
On this board people were raving it was the best movie of the year. The reviews said things like "As epic as the Godfather". Thus, I went in the movie expecting a cinematic masterpiece. What I got was just a very good prison movie with extremely well written characters. A guy is sent to prison for six years, with no connections in or outside prison. He lucks into a situation where he's the only one with an opportunity to kill a rat, and he can get under a mobster's protection. The movie shows him learning how things work and cleverly using the mobster's errands to build connections of his own, and it's just really well written. So, I have no complaints about the movie, except that everyone overhyped it.
Now that the year's half over, what are people's favorites so far?
My favorite film of the year so far is Winter's Bone, easily. It just has the perfect setting and perfect casting, and puts such a unique, original spin on mob movies.
Other of my faves:
I Am Love
What stands out about this film is the cinematography. It has one or two plot issues and is not accessible to people who aren't major film buffs.
A really fun deconstruction of the comic book genre.
A very well written movie and a satire on liberal guilt.
What started out as a slow year has really picked up in the last month or so.
Another movie I would put in the top category of movies for this year is Toy Story 3.
I seriously think it's the best childrens' movie since The Lion King. (Not that I've seen many. Even when Lion King came out I felt I was a little older than the intended demographic.)
I'll also comment on the elephant in the room, Inception. I give it a 7/10. I like the movie but I always feel like focusing on the negatives because everybody is saying it's like the greatest movie of all time. It's not. It's a good movie with great visuals and effects, good acting, and an average script. I feel like Christopher Nolan sees his movies as 'magical realism', when they're really pure fantasy movies. I might rate it higher if he treated it as pure fantasy instead of magical realism.
I'm surprised nobody else is posting in this thread. Am I the only one going to the theater and seeing new movies?
Just came back from watching Inception, for me the first film this year worth commenting on in this topic. Loved it. No, not the greatest film of all time, not even close, but spectacular, fresh and innovative in a way that I haven't seen in a while. 9/10.
Wishlist: Biutiful, The Kids Are All Right, Toy Story 3, Winter's Bone
I don't think Toy Story 3 was as good as the first 2, I thought the jokes were a bit cheaper. I think that an adult would find more that appeals to them in Toy Story 1 than in 3.
Four Lions was good - I found myself laughing a lot more than I generally do in cinemas. Some quotes were just awesome -
Waj: I think I'm confused, but I'm not sure!
Hassan: [after seeing Faisal's impressive stash of liquid peroxide] Hmm. Liquid peroxide.
Fessal: It's a stock piling.
Barry: How'd you get it all?
Fessal: A wholesale shop down the road.
Barry: What, all from the same shop? You mug! You'll get us nicked!
Fessal: No. I used different voices every time I go in.
Barry: Different what? Different voices?
Barry: Show me.
Barry: Show me the voice, come on.
Fessal: [Slightly panicked] ... Well one of them's my voice...
Fessal: 'Can I have 12 bottles of bleach please?'
Barry: Yeah I know what that sounds like! What are the others?
Fessal: ...I.R.A. voice...
Barry: I-I.R.A. voice? Their terrorists Fess! Why d'you wanna do a terrorist voice for? You'll get us nicked!
Fessal: But I'll be disguised then, won't I?
Barry: Yeah, as a terrorist!... Show me the voice.
Fessal: [after another long pause and in the same deadpan voice as before] 'Can I have... 12 bottles of bleach please?... ' And I've got one like this as well...
[In the same voice again]
Fessal: 'Can I have 12 bottles of bleach please?'
Barry: What's that?
Fessal: It's a woman voice cos... they'd want lots of liquid peroxide... so they can... dye her hair or something...
Barry: And her beard.
Barry: You've got a beard!
Fessal: I covered it!
Barry: You covered your beard? How?
[Faisal covers his beard feebly with his own hands]
Barry: So you went into a shop... with your hands on your face, like that, and asked for 12 bottles of bleach? So why has she got her hands on her face, Fess?
Fessal: [after an uncomfortably long silence] Cos she's got a beard.
Well, I haven't seen Toy Story 2 and the last time I saw 1 I was 11, so it was all pretty fresh for me. In 3 the jokes were entertaining, but what I found most appealing about the film was the emotional aspect of feeling discarded once you're not needed anymore.
Four Lions hasn't come out in the US yet. I'm lucky in that I live like four miles from one of the best arthouses in the country, so I get non-Hollywood stuff earlier than most here.
I think I agree with both the positive and negative stuff about Inception. The main gimmick is really, really cool, but beneath the main gimmick, it is a pretty typical thriller that is too often technobabble-driven.
I saw Inception yesterday. It's just not that special. It's entertaining alright, but it's just not a very good film. Memento is still Nolan's only very good film, I'm afraid.
Four Lions ****½ (close to *****)
#2 of the year so far.
The European films coming out now will be 2011 films for me.
Wow. I just realized how many films I'm going to have on my 2009 list.
Just saw Inception. I loved it, thought it was great. Good cast, great premise, had a ton of awesome visuals without losing its emotional core. A tad long though. I'd give it a 9/10.
The only other movie I've seen recently was Toy Story 3. Darn good for a second sequel, but it's nowhere near as good as the original. 7/10.
Inception is the first movie I saw in a theatre this year. We especially went to the theatre for the special effects. They were great.
One problem with the movie is its emotional emptiness: I didn't find myself concerned with the main characters' problems.
Another is the shooting and fighting, and violence in general, it just doesn't stop. Personally I 've never dreamt about shooting.
Animal Kingdom is the worst movie I've seen in my life.
I'm not exaggerating. It is seriously a horrible movie. Tedious, predictable, forced. The only movie I would ever call 'Worst movie ever' without doing a comic book guy voice. Just a very, very bad movie.
Sorry to keep talking about Inception, but I've finally seen it. First thoughts are that it's a lot of action densely packed into 2 and a 1/2 hours. Perhaps too densely packed. So while the action itself was compelling, I just found myself waiting for a comedown period which never really came. Perhaps a bit too overwhelming. The comedic (is that a word?) parts I felt were quite cheap and just put there for comedy's sake, for example that bit where Joseph Gordon-Levitt's character kisses Ellen Page.
On the whole though, it was very exciting. Overrated of course (the folks at IMDB place it at 4th of all time), and I think Maeby Funke of Arrested Development pins down why:
No! Deep is good! People are going to say "what the hell just happened?" and I'd better say I like it because nobody wants to seem stupid!
One final comment - why can't the bad guys in any film shoot straight?? I mean, Fischer Jr projected millions of army folk for god's sake. None of them could get a single shot on Leonardo DiCaprio or Joseph Gordon-Levitt? Not one. Yet they could shoot loads of you?? Purrrlease.
The only other film i've seen recently is Scott Pilgrim. Pretty good, I liked it. It was funny, yet still light-hearted, and pretty romantic. Michael Cera does that awkward teenager so well, and lived up to expectations.
Oh, I also saw Tetro. It's by Francis Ford Coppola. Just thinking about it annoys me.
I want to take a moment to highly recommend Last Train Home. It's possibly the best documentary I've ever seen. I haven't seen Shoah, but it's better than Grizzly Man.
It's a documentary-drama about Chinese peasants whose families live in the countryside and have to migrate to the city to work. Around Chinese New Year, 130 million people travel home at the same time.
I'd place it among the best films of the year.
Last Train Home is nice indeed. But it's also a 2009 film.
Well, yeah, but I'm not going to be able to see 2010 films from other countries until they come out here in 2011.
I saw The Social Network today. It's a pretty good film, but it doesn't remotely deserve to have a 97 on MC. It's written with a lot of wit, and it gets the cultural notes right leading up to the establishment of Facebook. What it doesn't get right is the emotional notes.
...I think I just described everything Aaron Sorkin ever wrote, if you fill in the blanks differently.
Seems about time to post a final list here.
I'm defining '2010 films' as 'Films released where I live in 2010', because otherwise I wouldn't be able to make a good list for another several months.
1. A Prophet
2. Winter's Bone
3. Toy Story 3
4. I Am Love
5. Enter The Void
6. Last Train Home
7. Scott Pilgrim Vs The World
8. White Material
10. Please Give
12. Four Lions
14. Black Swan
15. Rabbit Hole
19. The Town
20. The Social Network
Disappointment of the year: True Grit.
Still waiting to see: Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, Certified Copy, Dogtooth, Another Year, The Illusionist, Carlos, Film Socialisme, Eastern Drift
You've come around on A Prophet, eh? That's excellent. I tend to just stick to the IMDB release dates for my own lists, so I will be updating my list for some time. Here's a tentative top 10 though:
1. Inception (Christopher Nolan)
2. The Social Network (David Fincher)
3. Four Lions (Christopher Morris)
4. Winter's Bone (Debra Granik)
5. Exit Through The Gift Shop (Banksy)
6. Black Swan (Darren Aronofsky)
7. True Grit (Ethan Coen / Joel Coen)
8. The Town (Ben Affleck)
9. Toy Story 3 (Lee Unkrich)
10. The Kids Are All Right (Lisa Cholodenko)
True Grit was a bit of a disappointment, but I had anticipated that so I went in just wanting to see a decent western and I got exactly that. Uncle Boonmee is my personal disappointment of the year; Palme D'Or winners are often hit and miss for me but Uncle Boonmee was truly the most boring film I've seen all year. I rewatched part of it on 4x speed and I reckon it would've made a decent short film like that. Blasphemy, I suppose.
Wishlist: 127 Hours, Biutiful, Carlos, L'Illusioniste, Inside Job, The King's Speech, and The Way Back.
A very preliminary list, as I still need to see a lot of good 2010 movies. So far the list looks like this:
2.Panique au Village
5.How to train your dragon
6.The kids are all right
8.Exit through the gift shop
10. Black Swan
11.The Social Network
14.Toy Story 3
Didn't like: Wall Street 2, Scott Pilgrim VS The World, The Town, The American
Still to see: Winter’s Bone, Machete, Animal Kingdom, Mr Nobody, L’illusionniste, Tropa de Elite 2, La prima cosa bella, Uncle Boonmee, Enter The Void, Dogtooth, Everyone Else (Alle Anderen), Wild Grass (Les Herbes Folles), Mother, I Am Love, Another Year, Alamar, White Material, True Grit, Last Train Home, Please Give, Greenberg
On TV I liked the long Danish series The Killing the most, it's still running here, and Boardwalk Empire.
There was a short 2 part TV movie on the BBC that I liked a lot, called "Britz" about Pakistani's in Britain, kind of a companion for Four Lions because the lead actor is the same, and the subject also, only the treatment differs radically.
Maybe you run the 80's poll, and I sub for you in June?
My TV tastes are far more populist than my movie tastes. The shows I've been watching this year: Community, The Office, House, Stargate: Universe, South Park, The Amazing Race. That's pretty much it. I've been following Nurse Jackie but I have to wait for the DVDs to come out to see it because I don't get showtime. I want to see The Pacific and Boardwalk Empire as well.
We need another dark scifi serial melodrama! I miss my Galactica and Lost!
Yeah, that'll work.
Terra Nova seems promising, although it's not quite the same. Also, if you want dark, Breaking Bad is definitely the way to go. I definitely think you'd enjoy that series.
Based on Dutch releases in 2010:
01. Lebanon (Samuel Maoz)
02. The Social Network (David Fincher)
03. White Material (Claire Denis)
04. Yo, Tambien (Antonio Naharro & Álvaro Pastor)
05. Another Year (Mike Leigh)
06. Katalin Varga (Peter Strickland)
07. A Serious Man (Joel & Ethan Coen)
08. Shutter Island (Martin Scorsese)
09. Four Lions (Christopher Morris)
10. El Secreto de sus Ojos (Juan José Campanella)
I TOTALLY blanked on Lebanon. Stick that in my top ten somewhere.
Hmmm looks like Enter the Void is a 09 movie again in RYM (which it should be I guess).
Nevertheless it would have been my favorite of 2010 (and now it is my favorite of 09 )
1. L'illusionniste [The Illusionist] (France, UK)
2. Four Lions (UK)
3. Exit Through the Gift Shop (USA, UK)
4. Winter's Bone (USA)
5. Shit Year (USA)
6. Как я провёл этим летом [How I Ended This Summer] (Russia)
7. The Social Network (USA)
8. Paha perhe [Bad Family] (Finland)
9. Somewhere (USA)
10. Reindeerspotting - Pako Joulumaasta [Reindeerspotting - Escape From Santaland] (Finland)
11. Die Fremde [When We Leave] (Germany)
12. The Ghost Writer [The Ghost] (UK)
13. Sukunsa viimeinen [Pudana: Last of The Line] (Finland)
14. Toy Story 3 (USA)
15. Taulukauppiaat [The Painting Sellers] (Finland)
16. アウトレイジ [Outrage] (Japan)
17. Napapiirin sankarit [Lapland Odyssey] (Finland)
18. The Kids Are All Right (USA)
19. Rare Exports (Finland)
20. Kaboom (USA)
Very good year for Finnish cinema. My favorite of the year is Kohtaamisia (Heartbeats) (would be #5) but it was showed in one festival in Norway in late 2009 so I put that date in RYM when I added the movie.
Uncle Boonmee was disappointment,
I saw many 09 movies last year. The best seen after our 2009 poll are Enter the Void, Κυνόδοντας [Dogtooth] and Püha Tõnu kiusamine [The Temptation of St. Tony].
1 ) Piranha 3D
2 ) Machete
3 ) MacGruber
4 ) Exit Through the Gift Shop
5 ) Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
6 ) Inception
7 ) The House That Drips Blood on Alex
8 ) Due Date
9 ) Shutter Island
10 ) Jackass 3D
If I made a list, Piranha 3D would make my top 50 of all time. The only pseudo "remake" that's better is John Carpenter's The Thing. The underwater ballet scene was the best use of 3D since Avatar. I thought MacGruber was the best straight up comedy of the year, the hero was an asshole and Val Kilmer finally gets a great character to play.
True Grit & The Expendables really let me down.
Just watched Carlos, definitely worth the 330 minutes. Fantastic stuff. New #1.
If you like your movies to just be killfests, I can see how one would really like Pirahna 3d. Didn't see that one but I loved Machete.
Though given the choice between the two pirahna films I'd rather see the scifi movie 'Dino pirahna'. I like my campy films to be over the top silly, and that one has a giant pirahna eating a helicopter. Pirahna 3d looked like it's just a bunch of dumb teenagers being eaten in 3d. Like Snakes On A Plane, without Samuel L Jackson.
I really want to see Carlos, but IFC is only showing the shortened version and I think Criterion nabbed it, so I have to wait for them and pray they don't charge like $70 for it like I suspect they will.
I haven't heard of that one but it sounds like a winner, I love the SciFi Saturday movie marathons. You should see Piranha 3D though, the dumb teens/collegians get pushed to the background and don't come in to play until the end. And that ending, wow... it bests the Uma Thurman vs. the Crazy 88's fight in Kill Bill Vol. 1, which I hold in high regard. AMAZING use of make up and cgi. Great comedic turns from Christopher Lloyd & Jerry O'Connell too.
I'm glad someone else enjoyed Machete, it's about time they gave Danny Trejo a starring roll. It's about time Steven Seagal played a villian.
I don't have enough good things to say about Winter's Bone. I'll say this: Before last night I'd given 14 movies a perfect 5 stars on RYM. Make that 15.
A new (less tentative) list. Turns out early reports of 2010 being the worst year in film since the beginning of time were slightly exaggerated. In fact, I think it was quite a good year; it just took a while to get going.
1. Carlos (Olivier Assayas)
2. The Social Network (David Fincher)
3. Inception (Christopher Nolan)
4. The King's Speech (Tom Hooper)
5. Four Lions (Christopher Morris)
6. Winter's Bone (Debra Granik)
7. Exit Through The Gift Shop (Banksy)
8. 127 Hours (Danny Boyle)
9. Black Swan (Darren Aronofsky)
10. The Town (Ben Affleck)
Wishlist: Biutiful, The Fighter, L'Illusioniste, Inside Job[/quote]
Dogtooth is my new #1 of the year.