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  1. #81
    Author of 101 WWE Matches To See Before You Die Samuel 'Plan's Avatar
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    Yeah, I have to say that I'm with Powder. I thought TSOW was terrible. I went to the cinema to see it, quite looking forward to it as well. It struck me as a brave and relatively original idea. What I found it to be was a long, unconvincing and dull slog with nothing original to say at all. The main premise was always going to be a tricky sell to the common cinema goer, and I think it failed to capture the right sense of fairytale. The final twist I called the first time you saw the main character's neck so came as no surprise at all, and it just stopped being fantastical and started being silly. I checked out with the kinky hour in a flooded bathroom. So yeah, I thought it was pretty dire; a far-cry from Pan's Labrynth, Del Toro's best.

    I too am also sick of the snobbery of the Academy towards sci-fi, fantasy and comic book movies. But that said, I'm unconvinced Black Panther is worthy of a nod anyway. I really like the film, enjoy the hell out of it even, but it has some terrible flaws when you look at it dispassionately for the sake of critical appraisal.

  2. #82
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Eh, I enjoyed it. I don't really get where either of you are coming from. I don't think it was amazing but it looked good, sounded good, and most important for that kind of arts cinema, was bigger than itself. Thought-provoking.

    But on the other point, I don't really agree at all about snobbery and the Oscars. I don't think I've ever seen a comic book movie that I've thought deserved a nomination, and as much as I love them, I don't really think I've seen many sci-fi movies that really should be in the conversation too - although I'll admit there is a curious tendency for some things, like 2001 and Gravity, to net their director the best director nod while they don't win the best picture (though Gravity did get a nomination so that is less curious). And quite a few sci-fi movies do get nominated, including classics like E.T. and Star Wars, and then a bunch of sci-fi films nominated in the last decade.

    The truth is that the Oscars has never been particularly elitest the way some people claim, and a look at the kind of films that have won over the years should show that immediately. They've always been very 'middle brow', honouring films that combine a strong popular sensibility with an artistic sensibility or a bit of an auteur in charge with a clear vision. Popular genres actually do very well in the history of the best picture - a huge number of westerns have won, back when they were the 'action' movies of their day, and musicals have won it on a semi-regular way too - and no one can say they are exactly heavy, high-art, either.

    The vast majority of comic book movies and even a lot of the sci-fi movies that I love don't really have much status as 'art', but are explicitly, solely commercial productions. And can be the product of so many different influences and contributors that in the end a clear artistic vision struggles to really come through. And honestly, when it does you can often end up with something that feels like the Nolan Batman movies: a far better example of pretension than anything else that has been mentioned in this conversation so far.

    The truth is the idea comes around because people get suckered into thinking that if I like it, it must be great art, and ergo it deserves to win. But if you look at the history of the award it's far, far more true that those kind of movies get a much better deal out of the Academy Awards then "real" arts cinema, or foreign language, or one of several other categories.




    Anyway, on to more jolly stuff. Haven't been to the cinema lately but got some big projects off my desk, so looking to get more use out of my card. Any reviews of recent releases gratefully received.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  3. #83
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    A short list of comic book movies not only worthy of a best picture nod:

    Superman - 1978, 35 years ahead of its time
    The Dark Knight
    The Dark Knight Rises
    Guardian of the Galaxy - probably one of the most underrated movies even though it is universally loved
    Wonder Woman
    Black Panther
    Infinity War Part 1

    Sci-Fi
    King Kong 1933
    Planet of the Apes 1968
    Empire Strikes Back
    Blade Runner
    Close Encounters of the Third Kind
    Mad Max: Fury Road
    Back to the Future
    Alien
    Exorcist

    And in regards to Gravity...please, talk about another completely overrated movie, that was just a retelling of Cast Away but in space.
    Sandra Bullock stranded in space on her own "island" due to crash
    Has to figure out to survive
    Creates imaginary friend to keep her sane
    Imaginary friend floats off into oblivion
    After giving up all hope gets rescued.

  4. #84
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I've seen all of those comic book movies, and wouldn't nominate any of them. Not even close. The only one I'd even think about was probably the Burton first Batman film.

    I've seen most of the Sci-Fi movies too, and think you can make a case for Blade Runner and Close Encounters, but that's about it. Maybe Alien, at a push. They did only nominate around 5 movies in those years so it was pretty tough to even get a nod.

    I like a lot of the films, but again, don't confuse what you like for what is 'good' and you'll get a much better idea of the question. If you can't separate the two out then you're never gonna get it.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  5. #85
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    I wasn't using my opinion. I actually did some research on the Sci-Fi movies and the ones I listed were my preferences from the "snubbed" lists. And in regards to the comic book movies, they are also the best ones made.

    I absolutely love Batman 1989, but it is NOT better than the Dark Knight.

  6. #86
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    OK, there's far too much to address here, I've got some philosophy I need to prep for a finalists class on Wednesday and a few other posts here I need to get to in what time I do have, but I'm just going to highlight this....

    Quote Originally Posted by Powder View Post
    I wasn't using my opinion [...] they are also the best ones made.
    .... as the moment where I had to just leave this one alone.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  7. #87
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    I was referring to the sci-fi movies.

    BUT. Name a better comic book movie than the ones I listed.

  8. #88
    The Brain
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    All I'll say about the Oscars is The Wrestler should have gotten a lot more attention. But it's all just opinions, anyway.

    Saw A Simple Favor this past weekend. I liked it visually and the three leads are so damn charismatic, but the plot itself... well, did you ever see the episode of Community which culminates in a series of increasingly ridiculous reveals in which different combinations of people have been scheming against each other to teach them a lesson? It's ultimately that, but played oddly straight. I still enjoyed it but I don't think I'd recommend it too strongly.

  9. #89
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I do get where you are coming from with that. That's exactly the kind of movie that can do well at the Oscars and has that kind of 'middling', artsy-but-popular feel that the Academy usually go for.

    Went to the cinema the other day and missed the start of what I'd gone to see so ended up watching Night School. Oh man. I'm not Kevin Hart hater by any means but I found this one painful in places.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  10. #90
    The Brain
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    Yeah, that... did not look good! Or at least not to my taste. And I like Kevin Hart for the most part.

  11. #91
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    Very few stand up comedians can translate well to television/movies, though.

  12. #92
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Oh it's not him. He's fine in it, as far as you can be fine in a bad movie. It's not any of the performances really, it's the script - they've got very little to work with.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  13. #93
    Author of 101 WWE Matches To See Before You Die Samuel 'Plan's Avatar
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    Anyone seen Venom yet? I'm hesitant to see it. I usually don't make those decisions based on critical reception, but when there's so many films of its kind flying around and when it's listed as being an arse-numbing 2.5 hours long (just about) then it makes me reticent to commit....

  14. #94
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    Yes, and from the Marvel thread:

    Quote Originally Posted by Powder View Post
    OK...so....Venom.

    The movie was good and entertaining. It was not light and fun like Deadpool or the MCU, but it had humor. They got most of Venom's origin correct with the entire LACK IF F'N SPIDER-MAN!!!! Also they made Eddie Brock, the stereotypical High School bully, turned into adult bully (which is THE reason that Venom finds it's true host with Brock) into a whiny, down on his luck loser who is a underlying nice guy who constantly makes poor life choices and can't get out of his own way.

    I know I am usually overly hard on comic book movies/shows with their changes to the source material, but this one, to me is unforgivable. Venom and Eddie Brock are HUGE parts of Spider-man's history, and Sony threw that out the window.

    The movie was fun, but very disappointing to this comic book fan.

  15. #95
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Went to the cinema to see Venom. Don't really want to talk about that because it mostly bored me. But just going to mention that the trailers for the next James Cameron Sci-fi epic are out. Looks impressive as you'd expect. No idea if it's going to be any good (with JC it can go either way I find) but looks like one you might have to see to have an opinion on one way or the other.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  16. #96
    The Brain
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    I actually enjoyed Venom! It was funnier than I anticipated, which I think was the right call. It bothered me a bit that there wasn't even really a nod to the Spiderman connection but ah well. Not movie of the year or anything but I had a good time with it.

    Did JC even do anything after Avatar? Feels like I haven't heard his name in ages, except the constant rumor of Avatar sequels.

  17. #97
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    There was a nod at Spider-Man, but it was quick and subtle and most people missed it. When Brock and Anne were talking about Brock's self destruction, and they were mentioning the fact that he got fired from his job in NY from the Daily Bugle. The Bugle is the paper that Peter Parker and J. Jonah Jameson work for. And Brock did so as well.

  18. #98
    The Brain
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    Sorry, didn't explain myself quite clearly. I thought it was implied fine that they were in the Spiderman universe, in fact I'm pretty sure the first infected astronaut was J. Jonah Jameson's kid, which I think is in line with the original story.

    What I meant was the story has always been Venom manifested with his trademark look because he first bonded with Parker and picked up on his Spider Style, but here seemingly he just decided to look Spiderman-ish randomly and/or all symbiotes just naturally look a bit like Spiderman. Not a dealbreaker, just a slight annoyance for me.

  19. #99
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    Gotcha, but here was my review from the weekend it came out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Powder View Post
    OK...so....Venom.

    The movie was good and entertaining. It was not light and fun like Deadpool or the MCU, but it had humor. They got most of Venom's origin correct with the entire LACK IF F'N SPIDER-MAN!!!! Also they made Eddie Brock, the stereotypical High School bully, turned into adult bully (which is THE reason that Venom finds it's true host with Brock) into a whiny, down on his luck loser who is a underlying nice guy who constantly makes poor life choices and can't get out of his own way.

    I know I am usually overly hard on comic book movies/shows with their changes to the source material, but this one, to me is unforgivable. Venom and Eddie Brock are HUGE parts of Spider-man's history, and Fox threw that out the window.

    The movie was fun, but very disappointing to this comic book fan.

  20. #100
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Music films seem to be the fashion lately. Bohemian Rhapsody and A Star is Born remake coming out at roughly the same time. Also a trailer for an Elton John movie due in 2019.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  21. #101
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    For everyone who has seen A Star is Born, loves it. But you could not drag me to see it, as I hate country music.

    But the Freddie Mercury biopic, I am really excited for.

  22. #102
    Author of 101 WWE Matches To See Before You Die Samuel 'Plan's Avatar
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    I went to see Bohemian Rhapsody yesterday and really enjoyed it. Funny, witty, charming and uplifting with a real feel good ending. The narrative structure is as simple as it gets, but considering it's a biopic you sort of give them a free pass for that. Overall it was really good.

    I also had my interest spiked by Peterloo too, which I went to see today. I'm not sure if it's had an international release or not, being about the Peter's Field Massacre. It was...eh. I don't know if my expectations were too high, but I've never seen quite so unusual a film. It felt quite televisual, the first two hours was a relentless conveyor belt of orators addressing crowds about political injustice and saying the same thing in ten different ways (which I'm sure was going for historical representation, but for a film didn't lend well to engaging viewing) and the end - which portrays the massacre itself - didn't feel at all tense. It had some shocking moments but it lacked any real punch because the film did nothing to attach the grand historical narrative to an individual story. So it all ended up feeling like a historical essay than an emotive retelling.

  23. #103
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    Quote Originally Posted by Samuel 'Plan View Post
    I went to see Bohemian Rhapsody yesterday and really enjoyed it. Funny, witty, charming and uplifting with a real feel good ending. The narrative structure is as simple as it gets, but considering it's a biopic you sort of give them a free pass for that. Overall it was really good.
    I literally just got back from seeing that, and I was going to say pretty much the exact same thing. (And add that itís got the best soundtrack to any movie ever.) Highly recommended if youíre a fan of the band.

  24. #104
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    So I saw Smallfoot. Ended up being a little more kiddy than the trailer I'd seen made it look but there's still enough laughs for the grown ups if you want to watch it with the kids.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  25. #105
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    Question for you Brits (I already know the answer for Murica#1)... how do you guys feel about Clint Eastwood? Heís got a new movie coming out- The Mule. It looks freaking awesome. (Almost Logan-esque, just without being a comic book.) Itís got quite the line up, as well. Bradley Cooper, Michael Pena, Laurence Fishborne (Maybe there is a comic relation, after all) and Andy Garcia. Anyway... looks amazing, and this might be one of the few movies I catch in the theatre.

  26. #106
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Whenever his name has come up here the impression seems to be that his reputation was really at its peak after Million Dollar Baby, and it's been in a bit of a slide since then.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  27. #107
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    Gran Torino was pretty good. His older stuff is obviously why people got into him, though. His new one... The Mule... Iíll probably drag myself to the theatre and deal with other people in order to see this one. Check out the trailer when you get a chance.

  28. #108
    Feeling Minnesota Powder's Avatar
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    Red Sparrow: Well it was NOT a complete rip off of Black Widow. It was clearly inspired by it. It was long, and took way too long to get to the point, and it was very similar to Spy Game with all the twists and turns. The ending was a little obvious, and Jennifer Lawrence was good in moments, and stiff as a board in others. Also they completely rushed through the training and I would give it a 5.5/10. Watch it, but it was not great.

  29. #109
    He’s made good movie after good movie since Million Dollar Baby. Only miss really was the one last year when he used real people for that train movie. The guy is impressive churning out almost one movie per year at his age. He’s freaking 88! My grandpa just turned 90 and couldn’t tell you what day it is.

  30. #110
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    Well if you actually read it the question wasn't about the quality of the movies. I haven't seen many so not well placed to comment.

    The question was about his standing in the UK, where after a height following Million Dollar Baby his movies seem to have been less well received, generally, and frankly the name is likely to promote a discussion of some of his political stunts as much as of his cinema.

    I think amongst the cinephiles there's a sense that he has great ability as a director, but I get the feeling we're less hot on his actual output than the American audience. At least, that's my impression from a few different sources (press, teaching film, and just good old fashioned conversations).

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  31. #111
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    Only reason I asked that... heís an American hero. But for whatever reason, sometimes us Yanks decide to confuse acting with politics. From my understanding, you Brits are a bit more left leaning. (Correct me if Iím wrong...) Eastwood is very right. Was just wondering if his politics turned you off from his acting/directing. To give you an idea... my pops refuses to watch a Sean Penn movie nowadays because Penn is very left. (And my pops is dumb and canít get over being super political about everything. Even to the point that he refuses to watch a good actor/director based on politics and nothing else.)

  32. #112
    Administrator Prime Time's Avatar
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    I mean I'm not sure this is the thread for it, but we probably are a bit more to the left here, but I think it has more to do with the fact that mainstream conservatism here looks and feels very different - so even our right wing don't necessarily like people that far to the right of American politics. And several of our Conservative politicians embraced Obama, for example.

    But anyway, Eastwood's politics don't put me off his movies, but then I haven't really wanted to see that many on their own terms either. The two aren't especially connected for me.

    As for his acting, I don't think he has ever had a reputation as a great actor here - traditionally seen more as a 'star' than an actor. Probably quite unfair but that's how I remember him being framed in conversation. Directing, and MDB, reshaped his whole image in Britain - and then his politics and his stunts has sort of pulled back on that, not because it changes how people see his talent so much as it drowns out conversations about anything else.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  33. #113
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    Yeah, I wasnít trying to debate politics or anything. Iíll just leave it at this... The Mule looks really good.

  34. #114
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    Oh no, didn't think that you were suggesting that. Just a quick line to make sure we don't get sidetracked.

    I'll keep my eyes open for the trailer for it...

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  35. #115
    What stunts has he done? Not trying to be combative, just curious. I know he talked to a chair at the Republican National Convention many years ago but other than that I can’t recall anything. And I’m not even sure that was a stunt, just a strange skit.
    Last edited by comfortablynumb; 2 Weeks Ago at 10:23 PM.

  36. #116
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    Pretty sure thatís what PT was talking about. (Granted... I canít speak for him; I can only guess.) That was a stunt, and it was to make a point. Now maybe, him being 80-some-odd years... he wasnít quite cognizant of what was going on that night. But... still.

    #donewiththisconvo
    #checkoutTheMuletrailer
    #looksawesome

  37. #117
    The Mule looks great. He’s one of the greatest actors and filmmakers of all time. And I say that as someone not in line at all with his political views.

    Similar to how Tom Cruise is a kook but churns out great movie after great movie.
    Last edited by comfortablynumb; 2 Weeks Ago at 02:26 AM.

  38. #118
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    ^ someone else who probably has a reputation here as more of a star than an actor, funnily enough.

    But yeah the chair thing was what I was thinking of most of all, but maybe stunt isn't the best word. I was just trying to come up with a catch-all for all his political interventions.

    I don't think it's affected how people see his films, but it's replaced most of that conversation so if you bring up the new Eastwood film it's likely to be followed by, 'gosh, he's a looney now isn't he?' or something else equally British.

    "The worst moron is the one too stupid to realise they're a moron."

  39. #119
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    Yeah, Eastwood is probably a bit of a kook these days, and the chair thing was truly bizarre, but I'm still a big fan of his work. Don't think anything has topped Unforgiven for me as far as his directing career, though his best will always be The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly if we're including his acting performances.

  40. #120
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    This is sorta of veering off but usually, the only time I try to actively avoid someone's movies is if they've abused women or children... Basically stuff like that. Even then, you can't know about everyone. The politic stuff wouldn't make me not go see a movie...

    My biggest issue with Actors and Politics is using the Award shows as like a personal platform for their political agenda. It may be the most visible way to voice support for something you care about.. but its very cringe imo.

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