Happy Memorial Day Weekend - Thank you to all who have served!Top Gun Maverick (2022 XD)"I gotta do something here..I still cant believe it......" I gotta say Top Gun Maverick is absolutely a PERFECT movie. Blew my socks off. If you have seen the original and enjoyed it even a little, do yourself a favor and go see this movie on a big screen.Full disclosure...the only reason i saw this was early good buzz. I grew up with the original being a core High School movie but dont hold it in any special high regard. So going into this movie and finding myself so emotionally tied to the story and characters really caught me off guard. Theyve managed to make a movie that tackles ideas around aging, obsolescence, grief, processing loss, death, mentoring, love, and more and package it all in an incredibly thrilling action movie. Oh, and its a sequel that should crumble under the weight of the original's impact and so many poor nostalgia attempts by other franchises. Yet it doesnt! Its so well written that while its full of direct call backs or repeated story beats, they do not feel forced or check-list in nature, its a very organic and compelling story. Cruise is, of course, outstanding. But the biggest surprise is how great all the new characters are. Sure many are allusions to previous but they are a great bunch to fly with. It bears repeating: the writing and direction on this movie is exceptional...there's even a situation involving an older plane that upon reflection is a massive metaphor for Maverick himself. This movie is the most fun ive had in the theaters in forever. Check it out. Peace .n. Permission to Buzz the F This Tower.Mash
He’s outstanding?! Of course?! Yes! I’m always happy he was my first movie star crush. Dammit, he deserved it. I rewatched the original this week to catch up on it. So satisfying in that old school way. To think that the sequel can be equally as satisfying, after all this time and coming up with something new, is awesome.
Good morning F-heads! Hope everyone is having a safe and happy memorial day weekend. It's been an especially tough month here in the States, including the untimely death of a man who's name I've just always known, Ray Liotta. Between Goodfellas and Field of Dreams, he was probably on the TV once a month in my house. My first instinct was to rewatch Goodfellas, a movie where Liotta doesn't deliver a single dull second. But I've seen Goodfellas a few dozen times already, I wanted to discover something new. So I went ahead and watched setting that's been on my Prime queue for over a year now: Turbulence. Oh boy, what a good decision. Now, is Turbulence good? Wouldn't say that. It's structure is wild, there are a ton of control room scenes (the worst kind of scene), and Lauren Holly spends half the runtime alone in a cockpit. But it does have 2 things going for it: Hillbilly Brendan Gleeson, and Ray Liotta having more fun than anyone should be legally allowed to have at work. If you've never seen it and have 100 minutes to spare, you could spend it worse. Also I rewatched Out of Sight and Out of Sight fucking rules. Currently my favorite Soderbergh.
Good reason as any to finally buy No Escape. I haven't seen it in a while, but i remember having a ton of fun with it
Takes place in 2022! It's as good a time as any.
There's no bluray. I was sure i saw a release a long time ago
Ah, it's under the title Escape From Absolom
Turbulence is a blast. If I remember correctly, it’s also a Christmas movie in a Die Hard sort of way.
It sure is, Ryan. I'm positive it's no coincidence.
CROUPIER (1998)Clive Owen plays a shady, unmotivated writer who reluctantly accepts a job as a croupier. You’re left wondering for a long time why he is so particularly good at this job he hates so much. Its narrated by Clive Owen’s character, who starts to form the story for his book with the characters he meets at the casino. His fictional narrative seems to confuse him and clash with his reality throughout.Even though Clive Owen kind of looks half dead (on purpose), it was a very refreshing watch! It felt like a film-school movie - low budget, very creative, a little too snarky to be realistic, and trying not to follow a formula. In that way it reminded me of that 2015 movie, TOO LATE. Speaking of TOO LATE, whenever I think of it I miss Dichen Lachman. She was equal parts sexy, beautiful and weird looking. I want to watch more movies like these. I finally caught up on HOUSE OF GUCCI. My big takeaway from HOG: So this is where Al Pacino belongs! Finally! He is perfect in this as a kind, adorable, wise old man. And dressed very well. In almost all his other movies I want to like him but feel like I’m missing something, like I’m not in on like an inside joke. But he was great in HOG.Looking forward to Top Gun this weekend!
I can’t even explain how much I loved Top Gun: Maverick. Thank you, Tom Cruise, Greatest Movie Star Ever.
Right??? its sooooo good.
Something they never tell you when you start your own YouTube Channel is how it sucks all your free time away. Between that, a new job with a killer commute (about 4 hours total coming and going) and life in general, and I'm skipping Weekend Open Threads left and right! Hell, today (5/29) is the 12th birthday of my niece, and it's the first time I'm missing the annual (except during COVID) Eliana birthday bash/Memorial Day BBQ. :'( Shame, but work before pleasure I guess. For what it's worth, Happy 12th B'Day Eliana! :-DEnough personal crap. I still managed to watch a ton of stuff, the last we get to talk about before Junesploitation! consumes what little free time I'll manage to scrounge over the next few weeks. Joseph Kosinski's TOP GUN: MAVERICK (2022, IMAX) comes dangerously close to "The Force Awakens" levels of shameless repetition of the beats, motifs, plot lines and even shot compositions of the OG pic it's emulating. Hell, the first minutes (recycled footage with updated credits) and last shot of "TG: Maverick" (new scene, same damn sunset) are like bread holding up tossed-to-near-perfection Simpson/Bruckheimer tasty blockbuster chicken salad. And despite talentless writers (Ehren Kruger) sharing screen credited with excellent ones (Christopher McQuarrie), or the great mixture of CG effects and practical cinematography (the way the MCU, Fantastic Beasts and other big franchise pics should be made, but aren't) bringing aerial dogfights to renewed cinematic vigor, we're all here because Tom Cruise and Jennifer Connolly are this film's best special effects. Looking closer to Miles Teller's age despite being closer to Ed Harris' or Jon Hamm's, Cruise is still able to play beach football shirtless (see? TOTALLY DIFFERENT from "TG's" beach volleyball! :-P) and hold his own (thank you editing) as an ageless Adonis of two centuries of cinema history now. Cruise's gem of scene with Iceman (Val Kilmer) is almost a visual essay from the filmmakers to the audience as to why "Maverick" exists as is. A giant improvement over Kelly McGillis' cold distant professional, Connelly's warm and lovely Penny (whose one-line backstory from the OG pic is disposed of in one line of dialogue here... DUTCH!) gives the private life of Maverick an emotional anchor that gives weight to (a) the repeat of the moments/beats of OG "Top Gun" and (b) the finale's convoluted detour into "Behind Enemy Lines" heroics (the fuck?!). As a relatively newcomer to "Top Gun" lore (only seen the movie in the past 12 years or so via theatrical re-releases, 3D Blu-ray, etc.), "Maverick" is just about the perfect summer blockbuster... especially since seeing it in the biggest, loudest theater is the biggest finger you can flash at COVID for delaying its release by almost two years. Recommended. :-DAudrey Diwan's HAPPENING (2022, theater) will make you even madder-than-hell you-know-who is about to outlaw legalized abortion in the United States. The most terrifying aspect about Annie (Anamaria Vartolomei, who is in every frame of the movie except two quick scenes that are her disoriented POV) seeking help in her plight to get rid of her unwanted pregnancy are ripped from the book of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit's" cliches (male friends who just want to get laid, doctors with agendas, male teachers unable to read between the lines, etc.), but made more terrifying by knowing this backwards-looking world of 1960's France could become reality (it already is, but on a much larger scale) in some parts of contemporary America. It's not as easy or fun watch (cringe moments galore), but a strong lead performance by Vartolomei and a last act appearance by Sandrine Bonnaire (who in her youth played idealized young women like Anne's without the knocked-up complications) put it over the top. Highly recommended if you tolerate the subject matter.
My internet just crapped out. I'm writing these reviews on the subway going to work. Just lost FOUR reviews I was writing... DAAAMMNNN! :-( Will write them again later tonight when I return home from work. Hope you all have a nice Memorial Day Weekend... bye! :-D
Sometimes life is like that, J.M. Matters of life took me away from movies this week, as well. I did not even have the energy to revel in the unveiling of the Junesploitation calendar.
I hear you Casual. Will just have to incorporate these reviews into Junesploitation! somehow over the next few days. Because a good review is a terrible thing to waste. ;-)
HIGHLANDER (1986). If you've got a sword concealed inside your trench coat, how do you sit down? ROLLERBALL (2002). This started out promising, with a lot of high-speed action and wresting-style showmanship, but it gets more and more dull as it goes along. A lengthy set piece filmed entirely in green night vision made me feel queasy. NICK OF TIME (1995). I don't get it. The villains coerce an ordinary guy to commit a murder for them, but the ordinary guy has seen their faces and knows who they are, AND they're making no secret of following him everywhere he goes. The real time gimmick isn't enough to save this broken premise. PUMP UP THE VOLUME (1990). "Talk hard!"
I recently watched Ennio (2022) which required a bit of VPN trickery as the documentary is currently only available on VOD in the UK as far as I can tell (there's a blu ray release June 27th for people who prefer to import, but I'm not sure when/if a release outside the UK is planned). As a big fan of Morricone's work I thought it was pretty great, and his filmography is going to factor heavily into my Junesploitation this year as so much of his worked helped define exploitation films. A good chunk of my weekend has been spent diving through his filmography trying to decide what would be good fits for various days in addition to determining what is actually readily available anywhere.
There are a lot of movies to to choose from if you are making a Morricone score the requirement. For many years I have enjoyed listening to his music outside of the context of the films. I have seen things purely because I was familiar with the music score. Some of my favorite pieces from Morricone's film composing are La Spiaggia, ... Girotondo, and Il Giardino delle Delizie. Morricone and Edda Dell'Orso were a heavenly combination. For complete soundtracks, as great as the westerns are, I would have to choose Once Upon A Time In America as my favorite.What are your favorite works from him, Ross?
I have one film with a Morricone score in my Junesploitation list: The Professional.
It won't be a full requirement as days like Shannon Tweed day, Pyun, Jackie Chan, or Blaxploitation don't really have any options, but I've already bookmarked a ton of options for most of the rest of the month. For Kung Fu day I could probably go with one of the many films that "borrowed" some of his music but I have a huge backlog of stuff already for that day.Aside from the obvious (the stuff he did on the Leone movies), I have a fondness for his score for The Mission as that's a movie my mom loves and introduced me to. Likewise I have a friend who is really into The Legend of 1900 so I have some affection for that score as well. Not soundtrack related, but I can't imagine anybody not being able to get into Se Telefonando.I just heard a brief snippet of the score for The Devil Is a Woman (aka The Tempter) when I was searching for stuff today and now I'm looking forward to hearing more of it when I watch the movie. The opening theme in Bird with the Crystal Plumage is another interesting one that I really dig.I mean, he has literally hundreds of scores, and has worked with Leone, Bava, Fulci, Argento, Tarantino, Carpenter, and DePalma. I've got a wealth of options for June.