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12 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

(It all boils down to my being a terrible, narcissistic, insecure and ultimately hollow person, really, but I've come to accept this fact with time. )

So has everyone on these boards, but we still like having you around. :D

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I hated Eraserhead the first time. The second time I liked it, I felt I sort of got it. Tarantino is a fave and that's a surprise. A casual survey of my temperament would deem Tarantino not acceptable but I'm totally won over. The violence in some of movies pass muster with me and I don't like excess violence in movies. But story and characterizations are terrific. Tarantino is some kind of genius. Actually, the blood in Fargo didn't bother either. It takes talent to showcase fairly graphic violence and not offend. Kubrick is a mixed bag for me. Strangelove would be a candidate for all-time favorite. 2001 is general fave. I haven't seen Barry Lyndon and I have a vague memory of Eyes Wide Shut but I remember being okay with it. A Clockwork Orange, forget it. I'll never put myself through that.

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as long as someone does ONE FILM in their career that i think is a legit masterpiece- I'll cut 'em some slack overall- (because i know it's not easy)

Lucas has AMERICAN GRAFFITI, Woody Allen has SLEEPER, Polanski has CHINATOWN, Kubrick has PATHS OF GLORY- and each one of those is (to me) a legit masterpiece- flawless or damn close; so even tho I don't like A LOT (or all) of their other films, I always have to be, "we-ell, he knew what he was doing once (or twice) at least..."

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I've expressed my fondness for the Coens' movies, but that doesn't mean I don't find fault with many of them. As anyone who looks at my reviews may have noticed, I rarely give out a 9/10 or a 10/10 (an A grade, or 4 star equivalent), because I invariably see some flaws in most of the movies I see. Among the Coens' films I was least impressed by The LadykillersIntolerable CrueltyHail Caesar, and True Grit

With Stanley Kubrick, I wasn't very fond of Barry Lyndon or Eyes Wide Shut, but they've grown on me.

My least favorite David Lynch is actually Twin Peaks. I know that sounds like heresy, but when that show premiered it seemed like watered down David Lynch, like a generic form of his tone. I've also grown to appreciate it and what an impact it had on television going forward, but at the time I wasn't crazy about it. But I also disliked most TV back then.

And with Tarantino, I disliked Death Proof, his section of Four Rooms was derivative and pointless, and I was disappointed in, but still liked The Hateful Eight.

As far as directors that others around here or that critics adore that I generally don't, that list would include Douglas Sirk, Vincente Minelli, and much of the French New Wave, particularly Jean-Luc Godard, who I find to be an insufferable, pretentious con artist. I like Truffaut as a person, via his writings and his acting performance in Close Encounters, but I haven't been impressed with any of his directorial efforts that I've seen. 

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Have you seen Day for Night?  It's probably Truffaut's most conventional movie, and the movie that caused Godard to break off his friendship with Truffaut because Truffaut wasn't challenging the right people.

It's one of the great movies about movies.

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Stanley Kubrick is my all time favorite director (followed closely by Hitchcock and William Wyler) and I love ALL of his movies....but I can certainly understand why other folks might not like his movies. There is a large amount of 'coldness' to his films (starting with DR STRANGELOVE), but on the other hand there is also quite a unique style in his movies that sets them and Kubrick apart from other films and directors.

As for the Coen brothers, I can take them or leave them. Like Kubrick, you either appreciate them or they're simply not your cup of tea. I personally love THE HUDSUCKER PROXY, TRUE GRIT, THE BIG LEBOWSKI and FARGO. Couldn't quite get into NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN though.

David Lynch I never could quite get into though. 

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50 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

I rarely give out a 9/10 or a 10/10

I've noticed that. The majority seem to be 6 or 7, which I take to mean that it at least "good" in a general sense. I have never rated movies until recently and i use the four-star system with 1/2 increments. That yields eight settings if you exclude BOMB and ****1/2. If you assign a numerical value to replace the stars, 1-3 are pretty bad, depending ; 4-below average ; 5 is a mixed bag, not bad, but not good either ;  6-good movie, above average ; 7-extremely good - 8-superlative. A flaw seems to be that there is more distinction at the bottom and less at the top. It should be the other way around, since most movies are generally good rather than generally bad. I may adopt the Netflix scheme ; 5-loved it, 4-liked it a lot, 3-liked it, 2-did not like it 1-hated it. This affords more hair splitting on better movies, rather than poor ones, which I think is appropriate. Not that all of this means much, but it's kind of fun.

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49 minutes ago, Fedya said:

Have you seen Day for Night?  It's probably Truffaut's most conventional movie, and the movie that caused Godard to break off his friendship with Truffaut because Truffaut wasn't challenging the right people.

It's one of the great movies about movies.

Yes, I've seen it, and I know it's very well regarded, but it left me cold. I'm usually not too fond of movies about movies, movie making, or Hollywood, with some exceptions.

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13 minutes ago, laffite said:

I've noticed that. The majority seem to be 6 or 7, which I take to mean that it at least "good" in a general sense. I have never rated movies until recently and i use the four-star system with 1/2 increments. That yields eight settings if you exclude BOMB and ****1/2. If you assign a numerical value to replace the stars, 1-3 are pretty bad, depending ; 4-below average ; 5 is a mixed bag, not bad, but not good either ;  6-good movie, above average ; 7-extremely good - 8-superlative. A flaw seems to be that there is more distinction at the bottom and less at the top. It should be the other way around, since most movies are generally good rather than generally bad. I may adopt the Netflix scheme ; 5-loved it, 4-liked it a lot, 3-liked it, 2-did not like it 1-hated it. This affords more hair splitting on better movies, rather than poor ones, which I think is appropriate. Not that all of this means much, but it's kind of fun.

I started using the 1-10 score from rating movies on IMDb in order to help keep track of what I've seen. I see the score translating to a scholastic letter grade, which is how they were rated in Entertainment Weekly for many years, although I don't know if they still are since I haven't read it in a long time. So a 10 = A+, 9 = A-, 8 = B+, 7 = B-, etc.

I'm as picky about handing out a 1/10 or a 2/10 as I am a 9/10 or 10/10. To earn a 2 or 1, it has to be exceptionally bad, with a 1 being a thing of inept "genius". Out of the 14,752 movies that I've rated on IMDb, I've only given 30 movies a 1/10 , and 83 movies got a 10/10.

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I admit I've only seen a few Tarantino films but the one I liked best was Jackie Brown. Perhaps it's his most conventional effort but I found it emotionally satisfying and loved watching still hot mama Pam Grier in what may be her best performance. This film gave her opportunities as an actress that she never had in any of her blaxploitation films. I also appreciated the director's casual, almost off handed presentation of violence in some scenes.

I did see his Reservoir Dogs, as well,  and while I appreciated that it was well crafted and acted, I was permanently repelled by the film's most famous scene, the one of sadism and torture. Of course the director wants his audience to be uncomfortable in that scene, and in that he succeeded. But it's not my idea of entertainment.

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I also like Jackie Brown. I rank it third among Tarantino's movies, behind Kill Bill (both parts as one film,#1) and Inglourious Basterds (#2). After Jackie Brown it's Reservoir DogsDjango UnchainedPulp FictionThe Hateful Eight, and Death Proof in last.

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I couldn't watch Kill Bill, there was nothing for me there, absolutely nothing. I know I didn't give it a chance but I could see it's not my cuppa. I just didn't care. O Uma, Uma, you were so good as those sweet ingenues in movies past. Now look what's happened to you.

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Call Me by Your Name (2017) - Romantic drama from Sony Pictures Classics, based on a book by Andre Acimen, screenplay by James Ivory, and directed by Luca Guadagnino. Over a lazy summer in northern Italy, teenager Elio (Timothee Chalamet) undergoes a sexual awakening brought on by visiting American post-graduate student Oliver (Armie Hammer). Also featuring Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar, Esther Garral, and Victoire Du Bois.

There's a heavy European vibe from the cinematography and the beautiful locations, as well as the leisurely pace. Unfortunately for me, I also found it dull and overlong. I know it's a well liked movie, with many vocal fans, but to me it's another case of ordinary people in ordinary circumstances, which for me isn't what I look for in movies. Romantic films, straight or gay, are among my least favorite, and this is a very romantic movie. A gay-themed film hasn't made quite as much of a splash since Brokeback Mountain, and I liked that earlier film more, but I tend to like tragedies. There's some skill in the filmmaking, but I just couldn't get into it. I am happy that it brought a long-overdue Oscar to James Ivory, though.   (6/10)

Source: Sony Blu-ray.

Call-Me-by-Your-Name-1-620x388.jpg

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2 hours ago, Bethluvsfilms said:

David Lynch I never could quite get into though. 

TCM shows Eraserhead occasionally, and while it's not perfectly the film it wants to be, if you catch on to What He's Trying to Do, it's a key for understanding all his movies up to and including Blue Velvet. (Not after:  Basically, we watched Lynch fall apart during the second season of Twin Peaks, and we never got him back.  :(  )

Eraserhead was Lynch trying to film an actual REM-state dream, as when you wake up and remember your own dreams, they don't look exactly like movie dream sequences, do they?  The whole idea of the character wandering through a black-and-white world of non-plotted isolated scenes, odd/muffled sound, things suddenly going disturbing, and other characters hysterically saying things that don't 100% make sense, is good for a technical exercise--But when they had to hitch Lynch up to the harness of a straightforward narrative movie like "The Elephant Man", "Dune" or the classic first-season of Twin Peaks, we still get the story seen as if in a dream.  (Elephant Man basically cribs the initial abstract-image opening of Eraserhead, and when it jarringly cuts to a sudden Anthony Hopkins "where am I??" turning around and he's in the London side show, that's exactly the "Middle of the story" dream plot we've had every night once we're past the abstract-image stage and our plot-filling subconscious kicks in.)

And then after Wild At Heart and Twin Peaks S2, he turned nutty and stylized, and thought everything would be "artistic" if they started shouting and primal-screaming for no apparent reason.  

1 hour ago, laffite said:

I couldn't watch Kill Bill, there was nothing for me there, absolutely nothing. I know I didn't give it a chance but I could see it's not my cuppa. I just didn't care. O Uma, Uma, you were so good as those sweet ingenues in movies past. Now look what's happened to you.

"Sweet" Uma Thurman??  :blink:  Maybe it's that my vision of Thurman will forever be corrupted by "Batman & Robin", but seemed like she always went out of her way to play the self-consciously weirdo-edgy roles--Tarantino is a given, and I'll throw in the "Adventures of Baron Munchhausen" gig she did for Terry Gilliam.  And yes, her Mrs. Peel for the '99 "The Avengers" movie could have been so much better, or at least as good as it should have been when we heard her cast.

Btw, has she worked since "My Super Ex-Girlfriend"?  I'm too lazy to check IMDb.

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Spellbound (1946) - A love story, a psychological thriller, a murder mystery (aWho-Is-He as well as a Who-Dun-It) and a look at a small facet of psychoanalysis.  Hitchcock directs. Salvador Dali is Director of Dreams.

The new chief (Gregory Peck) of Green Manors, a mental institute and asylum, arrives and is greeted by staff, one of them being Dr. Constance Petersen (Ingrid Bergman), a brilliant young psychoanalyst whose cerebral approach to just about everything seemingly precludes any interest in, say, love (she is mercifully chided about this by a colleague [Michael Chekhov, son of the brother of Anton]). This is at once repudiated by Miss Petersen who immediately falls in love with Dr. Anthony Edwardes (Peck) who in turn immediately falls in love with her in the classic love-at-first-sight tradition. The glitch to the love story is that there appears to be something wrong with Dr Edwardes. Certain things that his eyes might randomly fall upon trigger a spell and Dr Peterson immediately informs him that his suffering is a result of repressed memories that is causing a guilt complex. Further developments complicate matters. He doesn't appear to be who he seems to be and may be suffering from amnesia. The dramatic flow depends on Ingrid Bergman curing Gregory Peck before the cops are on to him as he had become by now implicated in an unsolved murder. Dr Peterson though having just gained a lover now finds herself as having just found a patient as well and if her love for him is to be sustained, she must cure him, and fast.

Early on, Constance, feverishly thinking about her new interest while in bed and trying to sleep, gets up, dons a robe, and mounts a staircase to ostensibly get a book out of the library but cannot refrain from looking somewhat longingly (wantonly?) at the light under the door of Gregory's quarters which is located next to the library. The scene carries on but not to be revealed here. The music is saccharine but necessary. It just fits. The sequence is highly stylized and romantic (sexy might be better). If it's a little hokey I, for one, completely forgive it. I loved it. It's my favorite scene in the movie.

Constance, along with a colleague, interprets a dream that gets fairly elaborate cinematic treatment. And later, Peck remembers something vital making a tremendous breakthrough while skiing down a hill with Bergman. The ski ride is wildly unrealistic and laughably so ... but again I forgive. I look at it as being impressionistic (so to speak). The movie is simply telling us that skiing down the slope triggered something important in Peck's psyche but spruced it up a bit (with a nod and a wink) so the audience wouldn't get bored. :D A fail-safe explanation perhaps for any and all hokey scenes that appear in these movies. Sometimes it works though and sometime not. About half way down the slope the music gets exciting in a Bernard Hermann sort of way. (Rojas did the music, however).

The staircase music is a love theme of sorts that reappears often like an leitmotif. And Peck's spells are sometime accompanied by quivery, spooky notes played on a theremin (maybe) that makes one think of 1950s sci-fi thrillers when descending aliens have the electronic eye on some poor unsuspecting human.

Rhonda Fleming (in her first movie) has a short appearance at the very beginning of the movie as a patient who is hostile, aggressive, and nasty. She flings herself at the aid escorting her down the hall on the way to see Dr Petersen while digging her fingernails savagely into his arms. She immediately launches into a tirade against psychoanalysis to Dr Peterson, the movie's way of impressing upon the audience that the story is going to be about that very subject.

Gregory Peck is fine. I panned him a bit in Kilimanjaro but I do believe there were a few things more to do there, more than here. I don't believe the character here had to be so extravagant, even for someone with this affliction.. I just thought he was fine throughout. And with Ingrid, I lavished praise upon her in Indiscreet   that she made 12 years later and here I do the same. Funny thing, whenever something comes up on the Boards as to, the prettiest, the most glamorous, the most sex appeal, the best actress, issues like this that arise, Ingrid never enters my thoughts. But when I see her in a movie I'm a wreck just looking at  her.. I do believe I am ready to declare that in the category of All Purpose Appeal for Actress, the winner is (no envelope required) none other that Ingrid Bergman. She wins the Laffite-O Award. She has this remarkable face that goes along with intelligence and sophistication and she is just plain solid as an actress.

And yes, there is an intangible wonder about her. The best. I won't be too specific but just to say that those who have already seen the film will know what I'm talking about when I say that the "about face" in a latter part of the film was a wonderful little trick. Just absolutely love that. There are implausibilities here but the overall is so good they seem to fall away. I think it particularly unfair to bash the movie for the facile look at psychology. They took a small facet of it and did what they could. It's impossible to do justice in a 2-hour movie, anyway. There are certain time when allowances should be made.

****

out of five

 

 

 

 

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Yeah, wow, I love almost all of the Coen Brothers films. I won't argue that they do seem to occasionally look down their noses at everyone, but I would strenuously argue against the assertion that their films are tedious! I think they're the most consistently interesting American filmmakers of the last 30 years.

Edit: That's a response to Lorna's post from two pages ago. I thought it was from this page, otherwise I would have quoted it.

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4 hours ago, laffite said:

I hated Eraserhead the first time. The second time I liked it, I felt I sort of got it. Tarantino is a fave and that's a surprise. A casual survey of my temperament would deem Tarantino not acceptable but I'm totally won over. The violence in some of movies pass muster with me and I don't like excess violence in movies. But story and characterizations are terrific. Tarantino is some kind of genius. Actually, the blood in Fargo didn't bother either. It takes talent to showcase fairly graphic violence and not offend. Kubrick is a mixed bag for me. Strangelove would be a candidate for all-time favorite. 2001 is general fave. I haven't seen Barry Lyndon and I have a vague memory of Eyes Wide Shut but I remember being okay with it. A Clockwork Orange, forget it. I'll never put myself through that.

See Barry Lyndon practically every frame is a masterpiece. 

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2 hours ago, TomJH said:

I admit I've only seen a few Tarantino films but the one I liked best was Jackie Brown. Perhaps it's his most conventional effort but I found it emotionally satisfying and loved watching still hot mama Pam Grier in what may be her best performance. This film gave her opportunities as an actress that she never had in any of her blaxploitation films. I also appreciated the director's casual, almost off handed presentation of violence in some scenes.

I did see his Reservoir Dogs, as well,  and while I appreciated that it was well crafted and acted, I was permanently repelled by the film's most famous scene, the one of sadism and torture. Of course the director wants his audience to be uncomfortable in that scene, and in that he succeeded. But it's not my idea of entertainment.

Check out True Romance (1993) a Quentin Tarantino film Directed by Tony Scott B)

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Harry Tracy: The Last of the Wild Bunch (1982) (aka Harry Tracy, Desperado)

A sirupy sweet take on the story of Harry Tracy, nice scenery (shot in British Columbia and Alberta) but story lacks grit. Seems more of a love story with Bruce Dern in his aw-shucks mode. Also stars Helen Shaver, Michael C. Gwynne, and Gordon Lightfoot. If it had a music video included it would fit right in the Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid, The Life And Times of Judge Roy Bean, The Balad Of Cabel Hogue, and The Dutchess And The Dirtwater Fox. 6/10
 

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38 minutes ago, cigarjoe said:

Check out True Romance (1993) a Quentin Tarantino film Directed by Tony Scott B)

Yeah, I left that one out of my Tarantino list because he didn't direct it, but I like True Romance a lot. I also like Natural Born Killers, but Tarantino's contribution is minimal in the final product. It came from fragments of stuff from the original True Romance script, which was reportedly gargantuan. 

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2 hours ago, EricJ said:

"Sweet" Uma Thurman??  :blink:  Maybe it's that my vision of Thurman will forever be corrupted by "Batman & Robin", but seemed like she always went out of her way to play the self-consciously weirdo-edgy roles--Tarantino is a given, and I'll throw in the "Adventures of Baron Munchhausen" gig she did for Terry Gilliam.  And yes, her Mrs. Peel for the '99 "The Avengers" movie could have been so much better, or at least as good as it should have been when we heard her cast.

I think I am too steeped in the past. Late Uma is probably not known to me. I'm thinking of Dangerous Liaisons (1986) and another about the same time with a setting at Lake Como and starring Vanessa Redgrave, the title escaping me. Perhaps a couple of others. I was fairly near shocked that this creature I was looking at with my aborted attempt at watching Kill Bill was my young Uma. :(

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22 minutes ago, laffite said:

I think I am too steeped in the past. Late Uma is probably not known to me. I'm thinking of Dangerous Liaisons (1986) and another about the same time with a setting at Lake Como and starring Vanessa Redgrave, the title escaping me. Perhaps a couple of others. I was fairly near shocked that this creature I was looking at with my aborted attempt at watching Kill Bill was my young Uma. :(

That would be A Month by the Lake. There was also a  dark noir she was in back in 1992 called Jennifer 8, where she played a blind girl in danger. Her character was very sweet, kind, and innocent in that. 

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9 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Yeah, I left that one out of my Tarantino list because he didn't direct it, but I like True Romance a lot. I also like Natural Born Killers, but Tarantino's contribution is minimal in the final product. It came from fragments of stuff from the original True Romance script, which was reportedly gargantuan. 

I downloaded a copy of Natural Born Killers because Rodney Dangerfield is in it. I haven't gotten around to watching it yet because I understand he doesn't crack a lot of jokes in it.

 

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