Good weekend to everyone.It has been a week of changes, but they have not stopped me from seeing a few movies.THE STENDHAL SYNDROME (1996) – This is a surprising effort from Dario Argento. I hesitate to use the word ‘great’, but it undoubtedly is a solid film. Everything works because Anna is such a well-rounded character. While, to me at least, Asia Argento is too young for the role, she portrays the psychological struggles of Anna very well. I appreciated that the violence is disturbing without being titillating. The main flaws are the early CG effects and the pacing in certain parts of the film, but they are not detrimental to its impact. WAKE IN FRIGHT (1971) – One of the early works of Australian cinema, this is a character driven film all the way through. A rural teacher, trying to get to Sydney for the Christmas holiday, gets stuck in the middle of nowhere in the Outback. Already disillusioned, the teacher gradually loses all sense of himself in the strangeness of the land and its people. I admired the film more than I liked it. A couple Australian films from the 1970s with a similar theme, Walkabout and Picnic at Hanging Rock, I prefer.
WIF sound very interesting. i ordered the australian blu-ray because the US release seem to be out of print, but it looks like they're essentially the same thing
It looks like there is a couple of versions of Wake in Fright available. The one I saw is 109 minutes.
"Stendhal" is arguably Argento's last solid work as a director. I own it on DVD, feel no need to upgrade to Blu-ray and don't plan to buy any post-'96 Argento flick on physical media... 'nuff said. "Wake In Fright" is an amazing flick. I saw it about a year ago at a theatrical screening with director Ted Kotcheff in attendance, and it remains one of my most treasured recent movie-going experiences. :-)
I rented the Blue Underground Blu-ray of Stendhal Syndrome from Netflix. The film does look good, but the extras seem to be from the time the DVD came out. I do not think you are missing anything, J.M.
i feel dirty, i bought a Brett Ratner movie, HERCULES. i have yet to watch it, but i remember not hating it, probably due to the presence of Dwayne Johnson. also it was cheap, and it was a special pack that came with a 'making of' and 'art' booklet. among other things, i fell into the rabbit hole of the Mill Creek 2-movies blu-rays. first in line, CAMP NOWHERE and ERNEST GOEST TO CAMP. not masterpieces, but the perfect light movies after a hard days work.also, i finally got the blu-ray for THE MAN FROM EARTH: HOLOCENE. this is the sequel to THE MAN FROM EARTH, which was a masterpiece. the sequel is less of a masterpiece, no surprise there. it's good enough for a sequel, but my main issue with it is they made it as a pilot for an eventual tv series. and that bothers me a lot. why does everything needs to me turned into a tv show nowadays. i could spend the whole day explaining why i don't care about those anymore, but i won't. so yeah, MFH:H is still worth the watch, until the last few minutes where they open it and basically tells you to stay tuned for the next episodealso watched MORTAL KOMBAT LEGACY SEASON 1. good stuff, waaayyyyy better than the other moviesi also received a 5-pack of Jean-Claude Van Damme movies, which i'll try to dig in this week. and i'm waiting on a 3-pack called Payback Time with Dolph Lundgren, Chuck Norris and Jan-Michael Vincent. fun times ahead.
I love The Man from Earth, and didn't even know there is a sequel. Will have to get my hands on it. Thanks for the heads up.
Over the last couple of years I have bought several multiple film packs. I tend to get the DVD sets (a great value), so there is a grainy transfer from time to time. I am usually satisfied, however. I have a couple Mill Creek sets, but most of what I have are the 4-film packs from Warner Brothers. There are some good collections of 1980s and '90s movies available.
I wouldn't buy it, but Rattner's "Hercules" is not a bad flick at all. It has The Rock in it, and no movie this man appears in can be a complete waste of time (especially when surrounded by character actors clearly enjoying themselves). See it, have fun, enjoy yourself and then put the disc back in the case. ;-)
Been mostly rewatching older stuff this week: Thunderball (not the worst Bond but one of my least favorites, the underwater stuff is beautiful but takes waaaaay too long), Man on the Moon (more of an interesting story than an outright good movie, but still enjoyable), The Terminator and Rogue One (both with RedLetterMedia's commentary tracks) and Rocky IV and Sneakers, two absolute comfort movies.Also went to see a new Finnish horror movie with mildly high hopes, but was slightly disappointed. Kyrsyä (English title: Tuftland) was barely a horror, more of a mystery/thriller/comedy about a small village full of eccentric people and a visiting city girl out of her element. There's some nice visual touches in the direction and the story takes some suitably weird turns, but by the end it falls into cliché and is tonally all over the place. It also makes a joke out of a serial rapist, which instantly took me out of the movie. Still, might be worth 85 minutes if you happen by it (it's played a few international festival, no idea if it's getting a wider release), but definitely not worth seeking out.
Tonight's selection: The Illustrated Man and Bon Cop, Bad Cop. The first one was a collection of mildly interesting sci-fi short stories with a bonkers framing device, and the latter was a really fun cop comedy with great actors.Is Bon Cop, Bad Cop 2 worth seeing?
BCBC2 is fine. It's a sequel with all the problems that usually comes with sequels.
Is summer eating other seasons like Christmas has been eating other holidays?So I posted something last week in the thread but I put it up so late I don't know how many eye balls saw it: Need a little help from the community. Trying to find a movie I saw as a kid but don't remember the title of or really a whole lot about. It begins with monks delivering ornate scrolls of invitation to various fighters across the globe to a big kumite. I do remember one fighter acting like an actual monkey as his style. It had to be before the year 2000 because it was during the 90s when my parents were renting literally everything. I don't remember a single actor or even the character names and I've tried looking up movies that feature a fighting tournament and couldn't find it. Sorry I couldn't be more specific. Thanks if anyone can pull it out.Things I've watched in the last week:Rent: Girlfriend finally wore me down to watch it after 4 years, didn't connect with anything on the screen but glad it's over.Kickboxer: Very similar to Bloodsport. Didn't care for it, didn't care for this.Prometheus: Excellent ideas executed poorly. I went back to listen to the podcast on this movie and I just couldn't agree more with what Patrick and JB had to say about this one. I wish these reboots wouldn't bend over backwards to try to recall every famous scene. Please just make something original in the world we all enjoy (see Blade Runner 2049).One-Armed Swordsman: I was really looking forward to this because of its placement on so many martial arts lists online. It was slow going in the beginning, but picked up especially towards the end. Could have used a little more character building but honestly it's a solid Shaw film. My favorite was when the titular character fights four men at a bar along the road.Equilibrium: 1984 meets John Wick. The action scenes were second to none in my opinion and the world building wasn't terrible. Just a little more and this one I think could have been a classic.In Cold Blood: This is the type of movie I hope to shoot one day. The reveal of one of the main characters on a bus at the beginning is so much inspiration for me. About half way through the movie it does slow down a good bit, but that first hour fifteen is simply amazing.Starship Troopers 2: Skip this movie at all costs.Starship Troopers 3: If you're a fan of the original, definitely go check this one out. Not quite as good as the first, but just barely for me. They introduce some new wrinkles to the story like religion. It's a little hammy in some of the religious dialogue, but the ideas are there. "God's back and he's a citizen too."The Avengers: Hadn't seen this one since the theater. I didn't care for it back then, but I've been watching more "fun" movies in the last few months and wanted to see if my stance had softened. My thing with these Marvel movies is that I just don't care about the action scenes. There are giant cartoons for me and I just don't care. If the characters and story is there around it, then I can manage the action scenes. This one had the characters and story down and I loved it.Captain America: Civil War: So basically everything I said about the Avengers, reverse. Hardly any character development and I never got hooked on the story.
Your "monks sending scrolls for a fighting tournament" movie sounds an awful lot like Van Damme's first directorial feature, 1996's THE QUEST. Funny since you also saw "Kickboxer" recently. :-P
Yeah that's what it is. I didn't remember Van Damme being in it, probably didn't even know who that was at the time. Thanks for responding, I really appreciate it.
Glad you found the movie you were looking for. I've never seen it. How Did This Get Made had an episode on it, and they didn't think too higjlh of it. Also, it was directed by JCVD himself.
I actually think it's more palatable than Bloodsport or Kickboxer. It just retreads old water.
I keep seeing people reference How Did This Get Made on this site, is it something I should check into?
@Cole Hall,HDTGM is not one of my favorite, but a lot of people like it. i suggest you give it a try
Re: One Armed Swordsman. If you haven't seen it, it's worth checking out Tsui Hark's remake of OAS called The Blade. He's definitely going for a more arthouse vibe with it, but it's an interesting remake and well worth a watch. Plus Vincent Zhao is a legit on-screen fighter.
I'll check into it. I like the old Shaw movies but sometimes they are incredibly cheesey.
Are there any HDTGM episodes I should check out in particular?
Videodrome. Getting starz for free this week for some reason and trying to take advantage. Patrick mentioned it in his other podcast at daily dead when him and Heather were talking remakes/films that have not been remade. Have not seen this in over 20 years. So damn good. #hammertime
More like #BetamaxSucksTime. ;-)
I devoted part of the night to visiting the glory that was Italian cinema. BOCCACCIO '70 is an anthology film released in 1962. I watched the first two parts. Federico Fellini's contribution, The Temptation of Doctor Antonio, is great filmmaking. At his peak, Fellini could create wondrous images. The first segment, Renzo and Luciana, is a portrait of early 1960s Italy in full transformation. The economy is booming, a consumer culture is taking shape, and the cities of the north are growing. The times may be good, but that does not make life any easier to get through.
I feel like you’re describing the Van Damme film ‘The Quest’ from 1996. There are monks delivering scrolls to different fighters during the opening credits, and one of the fighters does use the ‘monkey’ style. Here’s a link to check it out, might be what you’re looking for!! http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xjzj9x
This is in reply to Cole Hall... for some reason it looks like it posted as a new comment instead of a reply! Either way, you have some luck tracking down what you’re looking for.
That is it! Thank you so much.
I went to the theater yesterday and saw two movies that couldn't be more different.YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE - This one is a gut punch. It's a disturbing, slow-burn, artsy revenge thriller that is not AT ALL for everyone. However, it's beautifully made with an awesome score, and I was pretty fascinated the whole way.I FEEL PRETTY - Do you like romantic comedies? This is a pretty typical one, but as a fan of the genre I really enjoyed it. It's cute, sweet, and the two leads are very charming together. With this and Trainwreck, I can definitely call myself a fan of Amy Schumer.
I'm a little conflicted about You Were Never Really Here as a movie-going experience. The pace and tone makes me feel it'd work better in the privacy of one's home instead of a dark movie, where I watched it and made me go 'Meh.' Joaquin Phoenix is so good at playing a manly dude dealing with personal issues I wish the movie he's in was as strong as his performance. That scene with the henchman in the kitchen and his "water rebirth" were excellent, but everything else felt like a set-up for a revenge resolution that punished me for wanting it to go there. Worth seeing, but I'd wait for VOD and Blu-ray instead of going out of my way to see it.
I watched Three Billboards Outside Ebbing 4x on airplanes over the last few weeks, along with some other less interesting movies. I love everything about TBOE. I heard some criticism like there’s too many coincidences - but it’s a comedy, so I think those are all allowable. I love that all the characters are lovable but ridiculous, well intentioned but hurtful, righteous and yet so wrong. I love the calm at the end. And every actor was so much fun to watch. It’s a movie I could watch every day.
I solved a blind spot and finally watched the middle film of the Dollars Trilogy: For a Few Dollars More. I don't know how it ranks with the other two (because who cares) but Van Cleef and Eastwood as friendenemies is great. Oh that hat scene.Silent Hill (2006) - I rewatched this after seeing it in theaters because Corpse Club did a recent podcast on it and Resident Evil (an absent Patrick probably was such because he wouldn't have been able to contain his excitement for a Paul WS Anderson discussion). Beautiful to look at and with a wonderful atmosphere, but I had a hard time connecting with much of the narrative. This gets love for being one of the best video game adaptations and that may not be wrong.
Sergio Leone is one of my great movie loves. For A Few Dollars More tends to be forgotten in the discussion of his westerns, but it is full of memorable scenes and that Leone style. The gunfight between Indio and the man who turned him in is as tense anything I have ever seen a film. I also love Indio's "sermon" about carved bank vaults.Have you ever watched Once Upon A Time in the West?
Yeah Once Upon is probably my favorite western. Totally unique pick, I know...
A quick dump of some of the flicks that I've seen recently:--EXIT THROUGH THE GIFTSHOP (2010): Still trying to process this one. It looks, sounds and smells like a hoax, but it's so well put together and fun you want to surrender yourself to the idea it's "lightning in a bottle" truth. It belongs in the same plateau as "The Blair Witch Project" and Michael Moore's "Roger & Me," IMHO.--LOL (2012): only saw this because I wanted to hear the "How Did This Get Made?" podcast episode about it, which turned out to be a bust since June and Jason weren't even present. French writer/director adapts her hit 2008 French movie to America, completely butchers the cultural differences (the slomo opening shot lands stronger in its French version than here), Demi Moore is no Sophie Marceau, Miley Cyrus' voice when reading a soon-to-not-be private diary is grating and the joke made at the expense of the Down Syndrome girl is repulsive. Still, Chicago and Paris have never looked lovelier or more different than the innards of a chicken during a webcam-inserted, Chatroulette-inspired sex joke. Barf! :-O--FRIDAY THE 13th PART III 3D (1982): Because like Patrick & Co. mentioned for their classic commentary track, if you're not watching Jason's iconic hockey mask debut in 3D you're a lame person. Well, I'm not lame anymore! :-P--WILD THINGS (1998): not worth the midnight theatrical experience at Nitehawk Cinema, but a fun flick that marked the end of John McNaughton's mainstream output. Neve Campbell has her only post-"Scream" movie role that lived up to her potential, Bacon delivers a second of full-frontal joy for men/women who care for such a thing, Bill Murray flirts with McNaughton one last time before casting his lot with Wes Anderson and Denise Richards looks fresh and still unpolluted by Charlie Sheen's "tiger blood" (yikes!). It's okay.--Disney's ALADDIN (1992): first time in at least 20 years. Loved that each of the four main characters has a sidekick (Jasmine = Rajah, Genie = Carpet, etc.), with Gilbert Gottfried's Iago stealing the lion's share of the funny. And even though the contemporary jokes in a centuries-old setting feels jarring, at least Robin Williams is making fun of people (Nicholson, Buckley Jr., Sullivan, Groucho, etc.) that have stood the test of time and don't feel as out of place like, say, Vanilla Ice. The songs by law offices of Menken, Ashman & Rice are few, but they sure pack a memorable punch. A whole new world (of hand-drawn animation with a sprinkle of early Pixar 3D), indeed. :-)
Exit Through the Gift Shop is so damn entertaining I don't even think it matters if it is "real" or not. None of the people involved are really all that likeable and it's still just so engrossing.
My week in movies:Destino, dir. Dominique Monféry (2003)*short film double feature part. 1*Originally started in 1945 as a collaboration between Walt Disney and Salvador Dali and not finished till 2003(!) this is a beautiful and surreal mood piece and well worth the 6 and a half minute running time!..Firebase, dir. Neill Blomkamp (2017)*short film double feature part. 2*One of the numerous short films from director Neill Blomkamp's (District 9 etc.) Oats Studio and the first chosen to become a feature*... Whilst I've found his previous features somewhat flawed, though I do like Elysium more than most and I would have loved to have seen his Alien movie, I'm finding the work he's doing in his own studio very interesting and this 27 minute short points to good things... Filled with more ideas than most full features and hitting the "R" rating HARD, this is a visually excellent teaser!..* UPDATE: Sadly this currently looks like it isn't going to happen now...The Wild Pair, dir. Beau Bridges (1987)Another lost relic of the eighties and a buddy cop movie that seems to hardly ever get mentioned! Thankfully the whole feature is on YouTube, back in the day I do recall having the ex-rental VHS in my hands BUT I never bought it... Though having seen it, it is not a very good film but it is a very interesting one at least... Directed and starring Beau Bridges (brother of Jeff) and Bubba Smith (aka. Hightower from the Police Academy series), this hits all the beats of the buddy cop movie, car chases and shoot outs however it is filled with some strange rather eccentric touches including at least three porno related scenes and weird background details like a scene set in a strange firehouse themed casino/restaurant/massage parlour! the real problem is the lack of chemistry between the two leads and Bridges the director's rather flat directing style... Certainly not with its moments and I dare say ripe for a Blu-ray clean up, a flawed but fascinating lost 80's action movie.
For action fans I watched two Bollywood action films that are worth checking out: Commando-One Man Army, and Commando 2: The Black Money Trail. Neither are exceptional but star Vidyut Jammwal is unreal He's basically Bollywood's Scott Adkins. I had to track down a DVD for Commando, but Commando 2 is streaming on Amazon Prime, and as basically no connection to the first movie so you can just start with it.