Let's all go to the movies~

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Thad
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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby Thad » Wed Jun 15, 2022 5:28 pm

Mongrel wrote:I'll hold off 'till the actual reviews (from friends - you know, good sources), but I'm increasingly suspicious that this movie is actually going to be bust-a-nut good.

They piqued my interest when they announced Amy Schumer as Barbie. She didn't stay on, but that was a pretty good early indication that Mattel was willing to let the studio take a pretty unconventional approach to the property.

I caught a few episodes of some Barbie cartoon or other on Netflix with my niece once and it wound up actually being pretty good. There was a running gag where Barbie kept referencing her various past careers.

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nosimpleway
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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby nosimpleway » Wed Jun 15, 2022 6:19 pm

Apparently it's a running gag on Life in the Dreamhouse for Barbie to announce, for whatever situation they're in, that "We need a $profession!" Then Skipper points out "Weren't you a $profession?" "Right!" Barbie then zips off-camera and back on in costume for whatever they need.

Enough of a running gag that they start playing with the gag itself (around 0:45 in):

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Angry Beaver
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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby Angry Beaver » Wed Jun 15, 2022 6:45 pm

Life in the Dream house is far better than it has any right to be.

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Thad
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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby Thad » Wed Jun 15, 2022 9:12 pm

Yeah, that's the one.

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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby KingRoyal » Thu Jun 16, 2022 9:45 am

They would definitely be leaving money on the table if they didn't let Ryan Gosling be funny



If you haven't seen The Nice Guys you definitely should

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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby KingRoyal » Wed Jul 06, 2022 3:35 pm

Last Night in Soho (2021) isn't a bad film but it's certainly one of Edgar Wright's weakest movies. Like a lot of Wright's work, the first two acts are great before things start to completely fall apart, which is this case is a bit of a shame as I really liked the underlying ideas he has going but his execution in the finale undermines the story.

The film follows Eloise (Thomason Mackenzie) who is accepted to a fashion school in London but when she arrives she finds things in London to be stressful, with strange men leering at her and her classmates ostracizing her. She ends up living in a vacant loft of Ms Collins's (Diana Rigg) house, where she begins dreaming about being a beautiful woman named Sandie (Anya Taylor-Joy) who wants to be a singer in 1960s London, and who falls in love with a dashing recruiter named Jack (Matt Smith) who scores her her first gig. These visions inspire Eloise to design 60s style dresses and even change her hair and wardrobe to be morel like Sandie's. But Eloise soon learns that what she's seeing is much darker

It's a beautiful film, with a lot of dizzying visual effects work, particularly in how they body swap Mackenzie and Taylor-Joy in scenes to represent Eloise seeing things from Sandie's perspective. And as things get darker there are some genuine scares and frightening ghosts. And the principal cast is excellent, especially between Taylor-Joy and Smith, who are clearly having a lot of fun.

Things start to fall apart in the third act, though, as a series of twists kind of brings the narrative down around it.

⇳ Click to Expand Summary
Eloise is actually a medium who can see ghosts, and is watching a haunting of the past. It turns out that Jack didn't actually help Sandie, but is instead a pimp who trafficked her into a brother, even beating and drugging her to keep her there.

In the real world, Eloise soon the draws the attention of an elderly man at a pub who identifiers her and even comments on how she looks like Sandie. As Eloise watches more of these visions, she soon witnesses Jack hold down and brutally stab Sandie to death, and fears the man following her in real life might be Jack. She initially tells the police who express disbelief, and then confronts the man in the pub. But after the confrontation, she drives him out of the pub and he's hit by a car and killed. It's then revealed that the man was named Lindsey and was actually an undercover cop who worked vice in Soho.

Eloise prepares to leave and goes to tell Ms. Collins, who reveals she was visited by police and that actually she is Sandie. What really happened was during the struggle she wrestled the knife away from Jack and stabbed him. She then went on to lure to the apartment and kill over a dozen johns before going into hiding. The ghosts and visions Eloise had been seeing were actually the men Sandie killed. Sandie then reveals that she's poisoned Eloise's tea.

Eloise is able to escape Sandie, though, and explains that she understands what she went through, causing Sandie to let Eloise go as she stays in a burning building

And I really like the idea of it being revealed that Sandie killed Jack and then went on to kill the johns. The main problem, though, is that both the narrative has to straight up lie to viewer to make this twist work, and it ends up cramming these reveals into about 15 minutes. As she tells the story about how she overpowered him and took the knife to kill him, the camera zooms in and the soundtrack starts with the horror beats, except in this case she is completely justified in killing her attacker. And the johns she murders were shown to have raped her while she was drugged unconscious.

Eloise does express compassion for Sandie and that wraps up the narrative, but the whole thing doesn't get nearly enough time to really explore those parts of the themes. Turning her into a horror movie villain at the end then having her stop as she reflects "Did young me really come her to be a serial murder?" in like 10 minutes does not do that material justice.

There's also the reveal about the old man being the undercover cop doesn't work out because initially he acts nothing like Matt Smith but does act exactly like the undecover cop we get for only one scene. And for that matter, it's a mystery why he approaches her and acts the way he does. He's acting aggressive and creepy and mentioning Sandie to her, but... why? There's not enough about the character to understand why he's acting the way he is, other than to be an intentional red herring to make it seem like Jack is stalking her in the present.

A lot is done to mislead the viewer into thinking Jack is the primary villain and it just makes what's going on make less sense. Initially it seems like what we're seeing is a dream. But it soon turns into a haunting, a byproduct of Eloise's gift of site. Except, at one point she very clearly sees a vision of Jack murder Sandie. Which is then revealed to be false but like how. Did the ghosts lie to her? Why did the ghosts lie? Was Sandie the one causing the visions? Did she do this to murder Eloise? Had she done it before, because early in the film she mentions other girls staying there as "disappearing in the night." But if that's the case, none of that is in the movie


Anyway, that's a lot about what is a really fun movie. There's a lot to love about it, the performances and production are great. I just wish we had a movie that actually dove a bit deeper into the ending

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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby Mothra » Fri Aug 05, 2022 10:34 am

I watched Lifeforce (1995) on a lark, because I remember always being curious about the VHS box at the video rental store as a kid. Turns out this movie fucking owns.

It's by the director of the Poltergeist, the story is fairly nonsensical, the effects are fantastic, and it's fun. I think the only thing going against it is that it is like 20 minutes too long, and those 20 minutes are boring as shit and happen directly in the middle of the movie.

Overall, really loved it. Want to find more like it.

Here's some of the better scenes

The entire intro, entry into the creepy-ass vampire ship, and retrial of the vampires:



This absolutely dope scene where Patrick Stewart's character vomits blood out of every orphice on a helicopter and it forms into a clot demon vixen that then explodes:



This awesome zombie body animatric thing they made


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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby Mongrel » Fri Aug 05, 2022 1:57 pm

The summary tag is doing that thing where only the first entry on a given page works, so clicking on yours just opens Royal's from the previous post.
Image

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Thad
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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby Thad » Fri Aug 05, 2022 7:54 pm

Shaft is a great example of how lucky timing and a couple of canny hiring decisions can elevate a just-okay script to the defining film of an entire genre.

On paper it's a pretty by-the-numbers detective story. Not bad, but pretty undistinguished.

But you cast Richard Roundtree as the lead and get Isaac Hayes to write the score, and now you've got something special. The rest of the cast ain't bad (and Johnny Allen's contribution to the soundtrack is underrated), but when people think of Shaft they think of the theme song first, the leading man second, and the rest maybe not at all.

As for lucky timing, it's got a couple of things going for it. One is that it hit at the right moment to stand out as one of the first and biggest Blaxploitation films, while still benefiting from the trail blazed by the likes of Cotton Comes to Harlem and Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song. And another is that movies set in 1970s New York are like a genre unto themselves; it's as romanticized an American setting as the Old West or Old Hollywood (or, at one time, the Antebellum South, though that's a lot likelier to be a setting for a horror movie these days, and for good reason). Just seeing the streets of New York in the '70s tells a story in itself, and sets a tone.

It manages to be a movie that perfectly captures the zeitgeist for its moment in time. And that theme song's an all-timer.

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Re: Let's all go to the movies~

Postby Thad » Sat Aug 13, 2022 1:12 am

Thad wrote:The 7th Voyage of Sinbad is a stunningly beautiful movie that I can't really talk about without acknowledging that, y'know, it is an Arabian Nights adaptation made by a bunch of white people in 1958. There are definitely some brownface/exoticism problems. Though, that said, it was less racist than I expected; hell, it's less racist than Aladdin.

If you can get past the cultural appropriation, it's a stunning film. The production design is gorgeous, but of course the real star of the show is Ray Harryhausen. The stop-motion creature effects are quite simply some of the best ever committed to film.

It's a fun, zippy adventure movie and, above all, it's really impressive to look at.

I picked it up in the Ray Harryhausen: The Ultimate Collection Blu-Ray set a few months back, after watching The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms on Svengoolie and deciding I could use more Harryhausen in my life. The box set is Australian but the discs are region-free. Unfortunately there's no similar set available in the US; all the American Harryhausen sets I've seen have been some combination of more expensive, fewer films, and/or available on DVD but not Blu-Ray. It's a shame this stuff isn't easier to get.

That said, 7th Voyage appears to be streaming free with ads on Crackle and Plex.


Golden Voyage of Sinbad is largely more of the same, and feels a bit like diminishing returns, though it's still consistently enjoyable. Harryhausen's stop-motion monster battle game has advanced by 15 years and it benefits from a much stronger villain than the first movie in Tom Baker (in a role that helped get him Doctor Who).

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