Oh! I read that as Tyrion by mistake. I was confused for a minute.
it's summer, baby.
Prometheus has been on my mind a lot this week. And something I realized that was a big part of my apathetic response to it was the characters. In the first two films, I really rooted for Sigourney's character. She was very likeable, and made it easy to be on her side. Prometheus contained absolutely no characters anywhere near as appealing. Noomi Rapace's character was the only one who was even remotely tolerable, but even she was no more than a 6 or 7 out of 10 on the charisma scale.
Maybe the extra 20 to 30 minutes in the directors cut will give us a little more in characters. Also I guess there was supposed to be a big fight scene between Shaw and the Engineer but Ridley didn't find it realistic. It'll be a deleted scene on the dvd.
In Prometheus almost all of the "personality" given to the characters feels forced, especially in the geologist and biologist characters, both of whom i didn't buy for a second. Besides verbally stating their professions, they offered absolutely nothing to lead me to believe that they were of any value to the mission whatsoever, and they were unfunny assholes. The captain was the only member of the crew that made think of the earlier films.
I Watched The Patriot last night for the first time in probably 10 years. It's a lot dumber and sappier than i remembered - I never realized is was directed by Roland Emmerich. Even so, once it kicks into high gear it's pretty damn entertaining. The battle scenes are really exquisite. Emmerich has a great eye for massive violence and mayhem, which this movie has plenty of - canon balls knocking people's heads off, Mel Gibson chopping people up with an axe, hundreds of extras blowing each other to bits in open fields, an entire village being burnt to death. There's enough of this to not really care about historical inaccuracies, non-accents, and the snappy quips of all the supporting soldier roles. It pretends to be a highfalutin drama the same way that Pearl Harbor,m but at least Emmerich had enough sense to make the focus of the film its revenge-story core and as much brutal, relentless, hard R-rated violence as possible, all shot as lovingly as Terrence Malick shoots nature. Jason Isaacs, as I remembered, is the real treat in the whole thing, but it's a shame he's not in it more. He plays the sadistic villain a quiet intensity and a subtlety that seems downright out of place amongst all the noise of the rest of the movie.
The only thing I remember about the patriot is the melting of his son's toys into bullets so he could go kill somebody. I remember thinking it was "cool".. :x
Patriot was kind of fun when it came out, and some good folks in it.
Russell Crowe isn't as good at being Mel Gibson as Mel Gibson used to be.
I recommend Zardoz, one of the best worst movies of all time. The trailer speaks for itself.
[SIZE=2]April 9th - The Residents at the Regent Theater
April 23rd - Parov Stelar at Club Nokia
May 2nd - Tortoise at the Teragram Ballroom
May 6th -*Sunn O)))*at the Regent Theater
May 7th - Melvins, Melt Banana at the Troubadour
May 16th - Brötzmann/Adasiewicz/Edwards/Noble at Zebulon
ATP Iceland, July 1-3, 2016*
FYF Fest, August 27-28, 2016*/SIZE]
A bunch of us all watched it right around the same time two years ago. it's so fucking strange that i had a hard time even describing it, beyond being a serious test of patience.
I went on a post-apocalyptic spree and watched Zardoz, Logan's Run, and A Boy & His Dog all in the same week. the latter was my favorite of the 3.
Can I ask a somewhat serious question? Is film dead? What I mean is, do you think film has any cultural relevancy anymore? I'm not asking if good films still get made, but whether or not the cinema is in any meaningful way connected to the zeitgeist of the early 21st century. Whether or not this communal experience has much value to today's audiences. Sure, there will always be plenty of cinephiles (see: this thread) and there will always be big tentpole films which make buckets of cash and (at least temporarily) become part of the national conversation (see: Prometheus), but there's been a shift in the last 10-15 yrs, hasn't there? I feel like in past decades, one could look back on a year -- especially in those crucial years in which one is coming of age -- and fondly recall the films that made an impact on the larger culture that year. That's not to suggest they were always good films; just that they resonated and were part of the national conversation. I find it hard to believe that kids who are coming of age right now (or even those of us who are well into adulthood now) will look back on 2012 or 2009 and say, "that was the year of xx film". Well, I know avid cinephiles might, but I'm talking about the larger general population.
I guess this shift was inevitable with the explosion in mobile and broadband technology. The entertainment options available at the touch of a finger are astounding when you compare it to just 10 or even 5 years ago. We're also, clearly, living in a golden age of television drama in which there is a higher concentration of high quality, well produced, directed, written and performed televisions series which, with DVRs, Netflix, Hulu and the like, we simply watch on our own schedule. Who has time for film when there's Homeland, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Downton Abbey, Boardwalk Empire, Game of Thrones etc...
I think the bit you are reaching for is kids growing up and "coming of age" now not having any films to look back fondly upon. Its always a tough trick to decide what is a "classic" when it is still settling in the minds of the people in the now.
In general I think people take it all for granted. Its not a big deal to go to the movies anymore. Or even to have an amazing screening of a film at home. And if it is a big deal to some people its only because they aren't willing to spend $15~ every time they go. And once they are in the theater its not as if they respect it in the slightest. Decorum goes out the window because of the distractions of always being connected to others instead of the art playing on the giant screen in front of you. A lot of people think they are better than what they are watching, while they (like the people in this thread) should revere it.
Prometheus was one of the most visually exquisite films I've seen in a long, long time. Absolutely worth the price of admission in that regard.
Do you guys know if Moonrise Kingdom will reach more theatres than the ones listed on its website anytime soon? It seems to be playing in every major city in Texas, except for El Paso...
Do limited releases generally become regular releases down the line?
I wish they had Joss Whedon write this one, or had someone like Bill Paxton for comic relief.
it's summer, baby.
I'm going to finally try to see this thing on Tuesday, I think. Can't believe it's taken me so long.
Prometheus was o.k. Too many questions that were unanswered even if its supposed to be a trilogy. I would have liked more of a back story of what was going on on Earth at the time, but the CGI was pretty amazing...some great landscape shots.
I saw Safety Not Guaranteed last night, some good laughs and a surprising ending (at least for me). Aubrey Plaza is pretty hot, but i'd like to see her in a role different than her emo/antisocial character.
Mayer Hawthorne 05/08
For whatever reason I decided to spend the past 24 hours embarking on a depressing film triple feature.
I started with Melancholia. I'm a von Trier fan and pretty forgiving of his outrageousness in general, but this was actually rather low key for him. I enjoyed the film, although I'm not sure I loved it. It's main strength (as has generally been acknowledged in most reactions I've read) is in its ability to deftly portray the inexplicable but all consuming despair of depression that can turn what should be the happiest of days into an unbearable slog. The domestic drama and Udo Kier's self absorbed wedding planner in the first half were vintage von Trier. As a whole, the thing is kind of a mess, but the manner in which the film was able to sustain a personal, quiet sort of dread and panic was impressive. Not really a failure, but not quite a success either, it almost seems like von Trier trying to work some things out on film so he can pursue other projects.
Next up was the documentary Dear Zachary. Supposedly, this started off as a home movie project by an aspiring amateur filmmaker but ended up building into something more. It's set up as a video letter to the unborn son of the director's best friend, who was murdered by the child's mother after he broke up with her, as a way for the kid to get to know his father. As time goes on and the legal system begins to fail the grieving loved ones of the victim by not incarcerating his murderer, it turns into a document of the custody battle for the baby between the mother and his grandparents on his father's side. It's a really harrowing, fascinating story with some truly devastating "plot twists" (they're almost presented as such, despite being non-fiction). The director was lucky enough to have enough footage to edit together to keep things varied and moving swiftly, which, combined with the fascinating story, keeps things fairly compelling. Unfortunately, he decided to make some really distracting and unnecessary stylistic choices with the editing and effects that come off as tacky and manipulative. The story is strong enough to stand on its own, but these choices sometimes drag the film down into second rate CourtTv territory. Another problem with the film, which is to be expected with such a personal involvement with the subject matter, is a lack of objectivity. All the interviews are done with friends, family, and co-workers of the victim who heap hyperbolic praise upon him, leaving us with a rather incomplete picture of him as a real human being, despite the surplus of footage ranging from his childhood up until the time of his murder. The inverse is true of his murderer, who is set up as basically "the devil," as the guys parents call her, and while her actions are inexcusably horrific, the film loses a great deal of complexity by not allowing her to be a three dimensional person. I suppose a lot of this is a result of being too close to the subject matter and the director being an amateur, and there is enough good stuff here to make it worth watching through at least once, but it's definitely not on the same level as something like The Thin Blue Line or Capturing The Friedmans, documentaries that Dear Zachary some times echoes but never matches.
Finally, thanks to this thread, I rounded out my downer marathon with Tyrannosaur, undoubtedly the best of the three. You know you're in bleak territory when the most joyous scene in the film is at a funeral. It's a restrained, tense drama that really lets the actors do the heavy lifting, and everyone pretty much rises to the occasion. These felt like real, complicated people and even though their brutality and ugliness shone through more often than not, it's hard not to get invested in their lives. And while it was filled with unrelenting despair, it wasn't just misery porn. The film was a testament to the redemptive power of simple human connection, even if the people connecting are severely and probably irrevocably damaged. No one is really saved in the film, the protagonist is still pretty much the same miserable bastard at the end of as he was at the beginning, but his life is made just a little bit less unbearable by the presence of Olivia Colman character. At times, it felt like a particularly harsh Mike Leigh film. It's rare to come across a film with such fully realized characters who aren't clearly symbols for some grand statement, so even thought it was a fairly small film in scope, it was extraordinarily refreshing, and in the end, not even a total downer.
I'm now rinsing my palate with the pure retardery of the Tim & Eric movie.
Saw Killer Joe tonight at LA film festival and loved it. Super twisted and dark.